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Sample records for fluctuating prey availability

  1. Simulation Analyses of Behaviours of Spatially Extended Predator-Prey Systems with Random Fluctuations

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    ISHIKAWA, M.

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available We often observe some kind or another of random fluctuations in physical, chemical and social phenomena to a greater or lesser extent. The analysis of influence of such fluctuations on phenomena is very important as a basic problem in various fields including design and planning of controlled systems in control engineering and analysis of option pricing in economics. In this paper, focusing on biological communities, we study the influence of the random fluctuations on predator-prey systems with diffusion. Noting that interaction of phytoplankton and zooplankton is the basis of a food chain in the lake and the ocean, we consider the two-species predator-prey systems consists of phytoplankton and zooplankton. We analyze the influence of the random fluctuations on the spatio-temporal patterns generated by phytoplankton and zooplankton by the numerical simulations.

  2. Prey size spectra and prey availability of larval and small juvenile cod

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Munk, Peter

    1997-01-01

    The aim of the present study is to describe the prey preference characteristics of cod larvae and assess preference variability in relation to species and size composition of copepod prey. A further aim is to examine the hypothesis that dietary prey size spectra remain the same during the larval ...... were indicated, dependent on location. The findings illustrate the usefulness of coupling dietary prey size spectra and biomass spectra of available prey sizes during studies of ichthyoplankton feeding ecology. (C) 1997 The Fisheries Society of the British Isles....

  3. Environmental fluctuations restrict eco-evolutionary dynamics in predator-prey system.

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    Hiltunen, Teppo; Ayan, Gökçe B; Becks, Lutz

    2015-06-07

    Environmental fluctuations, species interactions and rapid evolution are all predicted to affect community structure and their temporal dynamics. Although the effects of the abiotic environment and prey evolution on ecological community dynamics have been studied separately, these factors can also have interactive effects. Here we used bacteria-ciliate microcosm experiments to test for eco-evolutionary dynamics in fluctuating environments. Specifically, we followed population dynamics and a prey defence trait over time when populations were exposed to regular changes of bottom-up or top-down stressors, or combinations of these. We found that the rate of evolution of a defence trait was significantly lower in fluctuating compared with stable environments, and that the defence trait evolved to lower levels when two environmental stressors changed recurrently. The latter suggests that top-down and bottom-up changes can have additive effects constraining evolutionary response within populations. The differences in evolutionary trajectories are explained by fluctuations in population sizes of the prey and the predator, which continuously alter the supply of mutations in the prey and strength of selection through predation. Thus, it may be necessary to adopt an eco-evolutionary perspective on studies concerning the evolution of traits mediating species interactions. © 2015 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  4. Is the red spotted green frog Hypsiboas punctatus (Anura: Hylidae) selecting its preys? The importance of prey availability.

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    López, Javier A; Scarabotti, Pablo A; Medrano, María C; Ghirardi, Romina

    2009-09-01

    The study of the feeding ecology of amphibians is an old issue in herpetology. Notwithstanding, the lack of food resources data in many studies of amphibians feeding has lead to partial understanding of frog feeding strategies. In this study we evaluate the trophic selectivity of a red spotted green frog (Hypsiboas punctatus) population from a Middle Paraná River floodplain pond in Argentina, and discuss the importance of prey availability data when interpreting results from diet analysis. We analyzed the gut contents of 47 H. punctatus adults and compared frog's diet with the environmental food resources. Prey availability was estimated by systematically seep-netting the microhabitat where anurans were localized foraging. We identified 33 taxonomic categories from gastrointestinal contents. Numerically, the most important prey categories were dipterans, followed by hemipterans, homopterans and coleopterans. The diet similarity between males and females was high and no statistical differences in diet composition were found. The most abundant food resources in the environment were dipterans, coleopterans, homopterans and collembolans. In order to assess whether frogs were selecting their preys, we calculated Pianka's niche overlap index and Jacobs' electivity index comparing gut contents to prey availability data. Trophic niche overlap was medium but significantly higher than expected by chance. The electivity index indicated that H. punctatus foraged dipterans slightly above their environmental abundance. Among the secondary preys, hemipterans were foraged selectively, homopterans were consumed in the same proportion to their occurrence in the environment, coleopterans were foraged quite under their availability and collembolans were practically ignored by frogs. Without food resources data, H. punctatus could be classified as a specialist feeder, but dipterans also were quite abundant in the environment. Our results show that H. punctatus fit better as a

  5. Flocking and feeding in the fiddler crab (UCA tangeri) : Prey availability as risk-taking behaviour

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ens, B; KLAASSEN, M; ZWARTS, L

    1993-01-01

    For a full understanding of prey availability, it is necessary to study risk-taking behaviour of the prey. Fiddler crabs are ideally suited for such a study, as they have to leave their safe burrow to feed on the surface of the intertidal flats during low tide, thereby exposing themselves to avian

  6. Landscape-level movement patterns by lions in western Serengeti: comparing the influence of inter-specific competitors, habitat attributes and prey availability.

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    Kittle, Andrew M; Bukombe, John K; Sinclair, Anthony R E; Mduma, Simon A R; Fryxell, John M

    2016-01-01

    of their main inter-specific competitors. The availability of potential prey and vulnerability of that prey to predation both motivate lion movement decisions, with their relative importance apparently mediated by overall prey abundance. With practical and theoretical implications, these results suggest that while top carnivores are consistently cognizant of how landscape features influence individual prey vulnerability, they also adopt a flexible approach to range use by adjusting spatial behaviour according to fluctuations in local prey abundance.

  7. Relative availability of natural prey versus livestock predicts landscape suitability for cheetahs Acinonyx jubatus in Botswana

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    Hanlie E.K. Winterbach

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Prey availability and human-carnivore conflict are strong determinants that govern the spatial distribution and abundance of large carnivore species and determine the suitability of areas for their conservation. For wide-ranging large carnivores such as cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus, additional conservation areas beyond protected area boundaries are crucial to effectively conserve them both inside and outside protected areas. Although cheetahs prefer preying on wild prey, they also cause conflict with people by predating on especially small livestock. We investigated whether the distribution of cheetahs’ preferred prey and small livestock biomass could be used to explore the potential suitability of agricultural areas in Botswana for the long-term persistence of its cheetah population. We found it gave a good point of departure for identifying priority areas for land management, the threat to connectivity between cheetah populations, and areas where the reduction and mitigation of human-cheetah conflict is critical. Our analysis showed the existence of a wide prey base for cheetahs across large parts of Botswana’s agricultural areas, which provide additional large areas with high conservation potential. Twenty percent of wild prey biomass appears to be the critical point to distinguish between high and low probable levels of human-cheetah conflict. We identified focal areas in the agricultural zones where restoring wild prey numbers in concurrence with effective human-cheetah conflict mitigation efforts are the most immediate conservation strategies needed to maintain Botswana’s still large and contiguous cheetah population.

  8. Relative availability of natural prey versus livestock predicts landscape suitability for cheetahs Acinonyx jubatus in Botswana

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    Winterbach, Christiaan W.; Boast, Lorraine K.; Klein, Rebecca; Somers, Michael J.

    2015-01-01

    Prey availability and human-carnivore conflict are strong determinants that govern the spatial distribution and abundance of large carnivore species and determine the suitability of areas for their conservation. For wide-ranging large carnivores such as cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus), additional conservation areas beyond protected area boundaries are crucial to effectively conserve them both inside and outside protected areas. Although cheetahs prefer preying on wild prey, they also cause conflict with people by predating on especially small livestock. We investigated whether the distribution of cheetahs’ preferred prey and small livestock biomass could be used to explore the potential suitability of agricultural areas in Botswana for the long-term persistence of its cheetah population. We found it gave a good point of departure for identifying priority areas for land management, the threat to connectivity between cheetah populations, and areas where the reduction and mitigation of human-cheetah conflict is critical. Our analysis showed the existence of a wide prey base for cheetahs across large parts of Botswana’s agricultural areas, which provide additional large areas with high conservation potential. Twenty percent of wild prey biomass appears to be the critical point to distinguish between high and low probable levels of human-cheetah conflict. We identified focal areas in the agricultural zones where restoring wild prey numbers in concurrence with effective human-cheetah conflict mitigation efforts are the most immediate conservation strategies needed to maintain Botswana’s still large and contiguous cheetah population. PMID:26213646

  9. Relative availability of natural prey versus livestock predicts landscape suitability for cheetahs Acinonyx jubatus in Botswana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winterbach, Hanlie E K; Winterbach, Christiaan W; Boast, Lorraine K; Klein, Rebecca; Somers, Michael J

    2015-01-01

    Prey availability and human-carnivore conflict are strong determinants that govern the spatial distribution and abundance of large carnivore species and determine the suitability of areas for their conservation. For wide-ranging large carnivores such as cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus), additional conservation areas beyond protected area boundaries are crucial to effectively conserve them both inside and outside protected areas. Although cheetahs prefer preying on wild prey, they also cause conflict with people by predating on especially small livestock. We investigated whether the distribution of cheetahs' preferred prey and small livestock biomass could be used to explore the potential suitability of agricultural areas in Botswana for the long-term persistence of its cheetah population. We found it gave a good point of departure for identifying priority areas for land management, the threat to connectivity between cheetah populations, and areas where the reduction and mitigation of human-cheetah conflict is critical. Our analysis showed the existence of a wide prey base for cheetahs across large parts of Botswana's agricultural areas, which provide additional large areas with high conservation potential. Twenty percent of wild prey biomass appears to be the critical point to distinguish between high and low probable levels of human-cheetah conflict. We identified focal areas in the agricultural zones where restoring wild prey numbers in concurrence with effective human-cheetah conflict mitigation efforts are the most immediate conservation strategies needed to maintain Botswana's still large and contiguous cheetah population.

  10. Predicting seasonal and annual fluctuations in the local exploitation of different prey by Oystercatchers Haematopus ostralegus : A ten-year study in the Wadden Sea

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    Zwarts, L; Wanink, JH; Ens, B.J.

    1996-01-01

    We predict the intake rate and prey choice of Oystercatchers feeding along the Frisian coast, Dutch Wadden Sea, combining the optimal prey choice model (Charnov 1976) with detailed measurements of the widely fluctuating food supply. Assuming that the birds maximize their intake rate, the birds

  11. Taking movement data to new depths: Inferring prey availability and patch profitability from seabird foraging behavior.

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    Chimienti, Marianna; Cornulier, Thomas; Owen, Ellie; Bolton, Mark; Davies, Ian M; Travis, Justin M J; Scott, Beth E

    2017-12-01

    Detailed information acquired using tracking technology has the potential to provide accurate pictures of the types of movements and behaviors performed by animals. To date, such data have not been widely exploited to provide inferred information about the foraging habitat. We collected data using multiple sensors (GPS, time depth recorders, and accelerometers) from two species of diving seabirds, razorbills ( Alca torda , N  = 5, from Fair Isle, UK) and common guillemots ( Uria aalge , N  = 2 from Fair Isle and N  = 2 from Colonsay, UK). We used a clustering algorithm to identify pursuit and catching events and the time spent pursuing and catching underwater, which we then used as indicators for inferring prey encounters throughout the water column and responses to changes in prey availability of the areas visited at two levels: individual dives and groups of dives. For each individual dive ( N  = 661 for guillemots, 6214 for razorbills), we modeled the number of pursuit and catching events, in relation to dive depth, duration, and type of dive performed (benthic vs. pelagic). For groups of dives ( N  = 58 for guillemots, 156 for razorbills), we modeled the total time spent pursuing and catching in relation to time spent underwater. Razorbills performed only pelagic dives, most likely exploiting prey available at shallow depths as indicated by the vertical distribution of pursuit and catching events. In contrast, guillemots were more flexible in their behavior, switching between benthic and pelagic dives. Capture attempt rates indicated that they were exploiting deep prey aggregations. The study highlights how novel analysis of movement data can give new insights into how animals exploit food patches, offering a unique opportunity to comprehend the behavioral ecology behind different movement patterns and understand how animals might respond to changes in prey distributions.

  12. Seasonal Variation of Harbor Seal's Diet from the Wadden Sea in Relation to Prey Availability.

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    Camille de la Vega

    Full Text Available The Wadden Sea has an important role for marine mammals in terms of resting, nursing and foraging. Harbor seal is the most abundant marine mammal species in this area. The use of the food resources of the Wadden Sea by seals is not clear, and previous studies showed that this species can travel kilometers away from their haul-outs to forage in the North Sea. In this study, we analyzed the stable isotopes of vibrissae from 23 dead harbor seals found on the island of Sylt to investigate their diet. The predator´s carbon and nitrogen isotope compositions were compared to the compositions of different potential prey items from the Sylt-Rømø Bight and from the North Sea in order to study seasonal pattern in the diet and in the foraging location. In parallel, seasonal variation of abundance and biomass of the potential prey items from the Sylt-Rømø Bight were studied and compare to their contribution to the seal´s diet. The results revealed a change in the seal´s diet from pelagic sources in spring to a benthic based diet in summer, and an increasing use of the North Sea resources in fall and winter in accordance with the seasonal variation of the availability of prey in the Sylt-Rømø Bight.

  13. Prey availability affects territory size, but not territorial display behavior, in green anole lizards

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    Stehle, Chelsea M.; Battles, Andrew C.; Sparks, Michelle N.; Johnson, Michele A.

    2017-10-01

    The availability of food resources can affect the size and shape of territories, as well as the behaviors used to defend territories, in a variety of animal taxa. However, individuals within a population may respond differently to variation in food availability if the benefits of territoriality vary among those individuals. For example, benefits to territoriality may differ for animals of differing sizes, because larger individuals may require greater territory size to acquire required resources, or territorial behavior may differ between the sexes if males and females defend different resources in their territories. In this study, we tested whether arthropod abundance and biomass were associated with natural variation in territory size and defense in insectivorous green anole lizards, Anolis carolinensis. Our results showed that both male and female lizards had smaller territories in a habitat with greater prey biomass than lizards in habitats with less available prey, but the rates of aggressive behaviors used to defend territories did not differ among these habitats. Further, we did not find a relationship between body size and territory size, and the sexes did not differ in their relationships between food availability and territory size or behavioral defense. Together, these results suggest that differences in food availability influenced male and female territorial strategies similarly, and that territory size may be more strongly associated with variation in food resources than social display behavior. Thus, anole investment in the behavioral defense of a territory may not vary with territory quality.

  14. Diet and prey availability of terrestrial insectivorous birds prone to extinction in amazonian forest fragments

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    Luiz Augusto Macedo Mestre

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available This study compared niche breath, prey size, and diet variability in two pairs of sympatric species of terrestrial insectivorous birds, each pair containing one species that can persist in small forest fragments and one that does not. The pairs were Myrmeciza ferruginea and Sclerurus rufigularis; and Formicarius colma and F. analis, respectively. The prey availability in forest fragments was also sampled and compared to the availability in continuous forests. Niche breath indices did not differ between pair members, but diet variability differed in the opposite direction from that hypothesized. Although the two bird species most vulnerable to fragmentation fed on larger prey than less vulnerable species, prey availability, including that based on prey size did not differ among fragmented versus continuous forest sites. Thus, diet per se appeared not to be an important cause of extinction-proneness in these species. The simplest explanation proposed, that vulnerability to fragmentation was directly related to territory size, requires testing. However, it was consistent with observations that the bird species feeding on larger prey also need larger territories.Dieta e disponibilidade de presas de aves insetívoras terrestres em fragmentos florestais amazônicos. As aves insetívoras terrestres são um dos grupos mais vulneráveis à fragmentação de florestas tropicais; no entanto algumas espécies desta guilda ainda sobrevivem em fragmentos florestais e em florestas secundárias. Se a sensibilidade destas aves à fragmentação de florestas estivesse associada à dieta, então espécies com a dieta relativamente flexível teriam maior propensão em persistir nos fragmentos florestais. Este estudo comparou sobreposição trófica, amplitude de nicho, tamanho de presas e variabilidade de dieta de dois pares de espécies de aves insetívoras terrestres, onde cada par foi composto por uma espécie que persiste nos fragmentos e outra que n

  15. Defining ecologically relevant scales for spatial protection with long-term data on an endangered seabird and local prey availability.

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    Sherley, Richard B; Botha, Philna; Underhill, Les G; Ryan, Peter G; van Zyl, Danie; Cockcroft, Andrew C; Crawford, Robert J M; Dyer, Bruce M; Cook, Timothée R

    2017-12-01

    Human activities are important drivers of marine ecosystem functioning. However, separating the synergistic effects of fishing and environmental variability on the prey base of nontarget predators is difficult, often because prey availability estimates on appropriate scales are lacking. Understanding how prey abundance at different spatial scales links to population change can help integrate the needs of nontarget predators into fisheries management by defining ecologically relevant areas for spatial protection. We investigated the local population response (number of breeders) of the Bank Cormorant (Phalacrocorax neglectus), a range-restricted endangered seabird, to the availability of its prey, the heavily fished west coast rock lobster (Jasus lalandii). Using Bayesian state-space modeled cormorant counts at 3 colonies, 22 years of fisheries-independent data on local lobster abundance, and generalized additive modeling, we determined the spatial scale pertinent to these relationships in areas with different lobster availability. Cormorant numbers responded positively to lobster availability in the regions with intermediate and high abundance but not where regime shifts and fishing pressure had depleted lobster stocks. The relationships were strongest when lobsters 20-30 km offshore of the colony were considered, a distance greater than the Bank Cormorant's foraging range when breeding, and may have been influenced by prey availability for nonbreeding birds, prey switching, or prey ecology. Our results highlight the importance of considering the scale of ecological relationships in marine spatial planning and suggest that designing spatial protection around focal species can benefit marine predators across their full life cycle. We propose the precautionary implementation of small-scale marine protected areas, followed by robust assessment and adaptive-management, to confirm population-level benefits for the cormorants, their prey, and the wider ecosystem, without

  16. Availability and abundance of prey for the red-cockaded woodpecker.

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    Hanula, James, L.; Horn, Scott

    2004-12-31

    Red-cockaded woodpecker; Road to Recovery. Proceedings of the 4th Red-cockaded woodpecker Symposium. Ralph Costa and Susan J. Daniels, eds. Savannah, Georgia. January, 2003. Chapter 11. Prey, Fire, and Community Ecology. Pp 633-645. Abstract: Over a 10-year period we investigated red-cockaded woodpecker (Picoides borealis) prey use, sources of prey, prey distribution within trees and stands, and how forest management decisions affect prey abundance in South Carolina, Alabama, Georgia and Florida. Cameras were operated at 31 nest cavities to record nest visits with prey in 4 locations that ranged in foraging habitat from pine stands established in old fields to an old-growth stand in South Georgia. Examination of nearly 12,000 photographs recorded over 5 years revealed that, although red-cockaded woodpeckers used over 40 arthropods for food, the majority of the nestling diet is comprised of a relatively small number of common arthropods.

  17. On seasonal fluctuations of available Olsen P in soils

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    Vincenzo Tabaglio

    Full Text Available The likelihood of a strong seasonal effect on the analytical results of soil chemical tests has been substantiated by several findings. The occurrence of such a trouble would heavily affect the routine work of chemical laboratories dealing with hundreds or thousands of soil samples every year and would possibly interfere even with current timing of soil sampling and testing in agronomical research. Soils from four different experimental fields were sampled and analyzed for Olsen P test through the growing season of both spring-summer crops (maize and autumn-spring crops (soft wheat. To avoid the cross effect of recent P applications, samples were collected only from the control plots, with no P applied. In a first long-time experiment the level of Olsen P was followed in three soils during two years, while in a second experiment the study considered two different soils for a couple of years each. The amount of extractable (available Olsen P showed significant fluctuations-with-time in four years out of six. The observed variations seems entirely due to P absorption by crops, as they appeared in the final samplings during the cropping season. The amount of decrease was nearly always small, less than 1-1.5 mg kg-1 soil, and consistent with the reduction of the available pool which is to be expected as crops gradually take up nutrients. As far as Olsen P is concerned, no evidence was found for the occurrence of erratic seasonal variations such as those previously reported. As soil samples for advisory purposes are usually taken at different times of the year, it seems reassuring that no complications are to be expected about information needed to interpret the results of chemical tests.

  18. Prey fish returned to Forster's tern colonies suggest spatial and temporal differences in fish composition and availability.

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    Peterson, Sarah H; Ackerman, Joshua T; Eagles-Smith, Collin A; Herzog, Mark P; Hartman, C Alex

    2018-01-01

    Predators sample the available prey community when foraging; thus, changes in the environment may be reflected by changes in predator diet and foraging preferences. We examined Forster's tern (Sterna forsteri) prey species over an 11-year period by sampling approximately 10,000 prey fish returned to 17 breeding colonies in south San Francisco Bay, California. We compared the species composition among repeatedly-sampled colonies (≥ 4 years), using both relative species abundance and the composition of total dry mass by species. Overall, the relative abundances of prey species at seven repeatedly-sampled tern colonies were more different than would be expected by chance, with the most notable differences in relative abundance observed between geographically distant colonies. In general, Mississippi silverside (Menidia audens) and topsmelt silverside (Atherinops affinis) comprised 42% of individuals and 40% of dry fish mass over the study period. Three-spined stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus) comprised the next largest proportion of prey species by individuals (19%) but not by dry mass (6%). Five additional species each contributed ≥ 4% of total individuals collected over the study period: yellowfin goby (Acanthogobius flavimanus; 10%), longjaw mudsucker (Gillichthys mirabilis; 8%), Pacific herring (Clupea pallasii; 6%), northern anchovy (Engraulis mordax; 4%), and staghorn sculpin (Leptocottus armatus; 4%). At some colonies, the relative abundance and biomass of specific prey species changed over time. In general, the abundance and dry mass of silversides increased, whereas the abundance and dry mass of three-spined stickleback and longjaw mudsucker decreased. As central place foragers, Forster's terns are limited in the distance they forage; thus, changes in the prey species returned to Forster's tern colonies suggest that the relative availability of some fish species in the environment has changed, possibly in response to alteration of the available habitat.

  19. Prey fish returned to Forster’s tern colonies suggest spatial and temporal differences in fish composition and availability

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    Peterson, Sarah; Ackerman, Joshua T.; Eagles-Smith, Collin A.; Herzog, Mark; Hartman, C. Alex

    2018-01-01

    Predators sample the available prey community when foraging; thus, changes in the environment may be reflected by changes in predator diet and foraging preferences. We examined Forster’s tern (Sterna forsteri) prey species over an 11-year period by sampling approximately 10,000 prey fish returned to 17 breeding colonies in south San Francisco Bay, California. We compared the species composition among repeatedly-sampled colonies (≥ 4 years), using both relative species abundance and the composition of total dry mass by species. Overall, the relative abundances of prey species at seven repeatedly-sampled tern colonies were more different than would be expected by chance, with the most notable differences in relative abundance observed between geographically distant colonies. In general, Mississippi silverside (Menidia audens) and topsmelt silverside (Atherinops affinis) comprised 42% of individuals and 40% of dry fish mass over the study period. Three-spined stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus) comprised the next largest proportion of prey species by individuals (19%) but not by dry mass (6%). Five additional species each contributed ≥ 4% of total individuals collected over the study period: yellowfin goby (Acanthogobius flavimanus; 10%), longjaw mudsucker (Gillichthys mirabilis; 8%), Pacific herring (Clupea pallasii; 6%), northern anchovy (Engraulis mordax; 4%), and staghorn sculpin (Leptocottus armatus; 4%). At some colonies, the relative abundance and biomass of specific prey species changed over time. In general, the abundance and dry mass of silversides increased, whereas the abundance and dry mass of three-spined stickleback and longjaw mudsucker decreased. As central place foragers, Forster’s terns are limited in the distance they forage; thus, changes in the prey species returned to Forster’s tern colonies suggest that the relative availability of some fish species in the environment has changed, possibly in response to alteration of the available

  20. Linking extreme interannual changes in prey availability to foraging behaviour and breeding investment in a marine predator, the macaroni penguin.

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    Cat Horswill

    Full Text Available Understanding the mechanisms that link prey availability to predator behaviour and population change is central to projecting how a species may respond to future environmental pressures. We documented the behavioural responses and breeding investment of macaroni penguins Eudyptes chrysolophus across five breeding seasons where local prey density changed by five-fold; from very low to highly abundant. When prey availability was low, foraging trips were significantly longer and extended overnight. Birds also foraged farther from the colony, potentially in order to reach more distant foraging grounds and allow for increased search times. These extended foraging trips were also linked to a marked decrease in fledgling weights, most likely associated with reduced rates of provisioning. Furthermore, by comparing our results with previous work on this population, it appears that lowered first-year survival rates associated, at least partially, with fledging masses were also evident for this cohort. This study integrates a unique set of prey density, predator behaviour and predator breeding investment data to highlight a possible behavioural mechanism linking perturbations in prey availability to population demography.

  1. Linking extreme interannual changes in prey availability to foraging behaviour and breeding investment in a marine predator, the macaroni penguin.

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    Horswill, Cat; Trathan, Philip N; Ratcliffe, Norman

    2017-01-01

    Understanding the mechanisms that link prey availability to predator behaviour and population change is central to projecting how a species may respond to future environmental pressures. We documented the behavioural responses and breeding investment of macaroni penguins Eudyptes chrysolophus across five breeding seasons where local prey density changed by five-fold; from very low to highly abundant. When prey availability was low, foraging trips were significantly longer and extended overnight. Birds also foraged farther from the colony, potentially in order to reach more distant foraging grounds and allow for increased search times. These extended foraging trips were also linked to a marked decrease in fledgling weights, most likely associated with reduced rates of provisioning. Furthermore, by comparing our results with previous work on this population, it appears that lowered first-year survival rates associated, at least partially, with fledging masses were also evident for this cohort. This study integrates a unique set of prey density, predator behaviour and predator breeding investment data to highlight a possible behavioural mechanism linking perturbations in prey availability to population demography.

  2. Interactions among Behavioral Responses of Baleen Whales to Acoustic Stimuli, Oceanographic Features, and Prey Availability

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    2015-09-30

    understand, and effectively mitigate the affects of anthropogenic sound, including military sonar, on these animals . OBJECTIVES The overall...distribution and individual predator behavior has now been measured in portions of five field seasons of SOCAL-BRS. This has included two phases each in in...additional phases of SOCAL-15 with prey mapping are scheduled to occur in October-November 2015. By analyzing prey and predator at fine scales (100s of

  3. Prey size and availability limits maximum size of rainbow trout in a large tailwater: insights from a drift-foraging bioenergetics model

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    Dodrill, Michael J.; Yackulic, Charles B.; Kennedy, Theodore A.; Haye, John W

    2016-01-01

    The cold and clear water conditions present below many large dams create ideal conditions for the development of economically important salmonid fisheries. Many of these tailwater fisheries have experienced declines in the abundance and condition of large trout species, yet the causes of these declines remain uncertain. Here, we develop, assess, and apply a drift-foraging bioenergetics model to identify the factors limiting rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) growth in a large tailwater. We explored the relative importance of temperature, prey quantity, and prey size by constructing scenarios where these variables, both singly and in combination, were altered. Predicted growth matched empirical mass-at-age estimates, particularly for younger ages, demonstrating that the model accurately describes how current temperature and prey conditions interact to determine rainbow trout growth. Modeling scenarios that artificially inflated prey size and abundance demonstrate that rainbow trout growth is limited by the scarcity of large prey items and overall prey availability. For example, shifting 10% of the prey biomass to the 13 mm (large) length class, without increasing overall prey biomass, increased lifetime maximum mass of rainbow trout by 88%. Additionally, warmer temperatures resulted in lower predicted growth at current and lower levels of prey availability; however, growth was similar across all temperatures at higher levels of prey availability. Climate change will likely alter flow and temperature regimes in large rivers with corresponding changes to invertebrate prey resources used by fish. Broader application of drift-foraging bioenergetics models to build a mechanistic understanding of how changes to habitat conditions and prey resources affect growth of salmonids will benefit management of tailwater fisheries.

  4. Does diet in lacertid lizards reflect prey availability? Evidence for selective predation in the Aeolian wall lizard, Podarcis raffonei (Mertens, 1952 (Reptilia, Lacertidae

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    Pietro Lo Cascio

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available In this paper the invertebrate fauna occurring on Scoglio Faraglione, a tiny Aeolian island (AeolianArchipelago, NE Sicily inhabited by a population of the critically endangered lacertid lizard Podarcis raffonei(Mertens, 1952, was censused at different seasons and the resulting data were then compared with dataobtained analysing prey composition and prey abundance in the diet of the lizards occurring on the same islet.The diet of Podarcis raffonei was mainly based on insects and other arthropods. The results indicate that dietcomposition is not directly influenced by prey availability and temporal prey abundance, and that there isstrong evidence indicating selective predation. Lizards prey upon a number of arthropod categories fewer thanthat recorded in field. Some invertebrate taxa (e.g. Diptera and Gastropoda are really less attractive for lizardsand are rarely preyed or not preyed at all despite their spatial and/or temporal abundance. This suggests thatPodarcis raffonei is able to operate a hierarchical choice within the range of prey items constituting its preyspectrum, probably through the ability to discriminate between prey chemicals or visually oriented predation.

  5. Harvest-related edge effects on prey availability and foraging of hooded warblers in a bottomland hardwood forest.

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    John Kilgo

    2005-04-20

    The effects of harvest-created canopy gaps in bottomland hardwood forests on arthropod abundance and, hence, the foraging ecology of birds are poorly understood. I predicted that arthropod abundance would be high near edges of group-selection harvest gaps and lower in the surrounding forest, and that male Hooded Warblers (Wilsonia citrina) foraging near gaps would find more prey per unit time than those foraging in the surrounding forest. In fact, arthropod abundance was greater >100 m from a gap edge than at 0-30 m or 30-100 m from an edge, due to their abundance on switchcane (Arundinaria gigantea); arthropods did not differ in abundance among distances from gaps on oaks (Quercus spp.) or red maple (Acer rubrum). Similarly, Hooded Warbler foraging attack rates were not higher near gap edges: when foraging for fledglings, attack rate did not differ among distances from gaps, but when foraging for themselves, attack rates actually were lower 0-30 m from gap edges than 30-100 m or >100 m from a gap edge. Foraging attack rate was positively associated with arthropod abundance. Hooded Warblers apparently encountered fewer prey and presumably foraged less efficiently where arthropods were least abundant, i.e., near gaps. That attack rates among birds foraging for fledglings were not affected by distance from gap (and hence arthropod abundance) suggests that prey availability may not be limiting at any location across the forest, despite the depressing effects of gaps on arthropod abundance.

  6. Wind effects on prey availability: How northward migrating waders use brackish and hypersaline lagoons in the sivash, Ukraine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verkuil, Yvonne; Koolhaas, Anita; Van Der Winden, Jan

    Large numbers of waders migrating northward in spring use the Sivash, a large system of shallow, brackish and hypersaline lagoons in the Black Sea and Azov Sea region (Ukraine). The bottoms of these lagoons are often uncovered by the wind. Hence, for waders the time and space available for feeding depend on wind conditions. In hypersaline lagoons the benthic and pelagic fauna was very poor, consisting mainly of chironomid larvae (0.19 g AFDM·m -2) and brine shrimps Artemia salina, respectively. Brine shrimp abundance was correlated with salinity, wind force, wind direction and water depth. Dunlin Calidris alpina and curlew sandpiper Calidris ferruginea were the only species feeding on brine shrimp. As brine shrimp densities are higher in deeper water, smaller waders such as broad-billed sandpipers Limicola falcinellus are too short-legged to reach exploitable densities of brine shrimp. In brackish lagoons the benthic and pelagic fauna was rich, consisting of polychaetes, bivalves, gastropods, chironomid larvae, isopods and amphipods (8.9 to 30.5 g AFDM·m -2), but there were no brine shrimps. Prey biomass increased with the distance from the coast, being highest on the site that was most frequently inundated. Dunlin, broad-billed sandpiper and grey plover Pluvialis squatarola were the most abundant birds in the brackish lagoon. Due to the effects of wind-tides only a small area was usually available as a feeding site. Gammarus insensibilis was the alternative prey resource in the water layer, and their density varied with wind direction in the same way as brine shrimp. Curlew sandpipers and dunlins in the hypersaline lagoons and broad-billed sandpipers in the brackish lagoons often changed feeding sites, probably following the variation in prey availability. Only because of the large size and variety of lagoons are waders in the Sivash always able to find good feeding sites.

  7. Bottom trawling affects fish condition through changes in the ratio of prey availability to density of competitors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hiddink, Jan Geert; Moranta, Joan; Balestrini, Stephen

    2016-01-01

    pressure. 2. We assessed the impact of bottom trawling on the food availability, condition and stomach contents of three flatfishes and the Norway lobster in an area in the Kattegat hat is characterized by a steep commercial bottom-trawling gradient due to the establishment of an area closed to all....... This pattern was mirrored in both the condition and stomach contents of plaice and for long-rough dab. 4. No effect of trawling on dab prey and condition was found. Conversely, the condition of the main target species – Norway lobster – increased as its biomass decreased with increased trawling intensities. 5...

  8. Stable isotopes and mercury in a model estuarine fish: Multibasin comparisons with water quality, community structure, and available prey base

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Adams, Douglas H., E-mail: Doug.Adams@MyFWC.com; Paperno, Richard

    2012-01-01

    Stable-isotope ratios ({delta}{sup 13}C and {delta}{sup 15}N) and mercury in a model predator, and associated prey community assessments were used to make inferences regarding food web relationships and how these relationships are influenced by habitat variability and anthropogenic factors. Although interconnected, the three major basins of the Indian River Lagoon system on the Atlantic coast of Florida comprise noticeably different available habitat types with spatially distinct faunal communities and available prey for spotted seatrout, Cynoscion nebulosus, a model predatory fish species. Water quality, degree of urbanization, human population density, and levels of nitrogen enrichment clearly differ between these representative estuarine basins. The differences can influence feeding ecology and therefore result in different mercury concentrations and different stable-isotope signatures of spotted seatrout between basins. Mercury concentrations in spotted seatrout were greatest in Mosquito Lagoon (ML) and least in the Indian River Lagoon proper (IRL), although concentrations were low for all basins. Spotted seatrout from IRL were carbon-depleted and nitrogen-enriched compared with those from the other basins; this suggests either that the fish's primary source of carbon in IRL is an algae- or phytoplankton-based food web or that the pathway through the food web is shorter there. The {delta}{sup 15}N values of IRL spotted seatrout were greater than those in the Banana River Lagoon or ML, suggesting slightly different trophic positioning of fish in these basins. The greater {delta}{sup 15}N values in IRL spotted seatrout may also reflect the greater human population density and resultant anthropogenic inputs (e.g., observed higher total nitrogen levels) in IRL compared with the other more pristine basins examined. Understanding species' responses to broad-scale habitat heterogeneity in estuaries and knowing basin-specific differences in stable isotopes

  9. Shearwater foraging in the Southern Ocean: the roles of prey availability and winds.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ben Raymond

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Sooty (Puffinus griseus and short-tailed (P. tenuirostris shearwaters are abundant seabirds that range widely across global oceans. Understanding the foraging ecology of these species in the Southern Ocean is important for monitoring and ecosystem conservation and management. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Tracking data from sooty and short-tailed shearwaters from three regions of New Zealand and Australia were combined with at-sea observations of shearwaters in the Southern Ocean, physical oceanography, near-surface copepod distributions, pelagic trawl data, and synoptic near-surface winds. Shearwaters from all three regions foraged in the Polar Front zone, and showed particular overlap in the region around 140 degrees E. Short-tailed shearwaters from South Australia also foraged in Antarctic waters south of the Polar Front. The spatial distribution of shearwater foraging effort in the Polar Front zone was matched by patterns in large-scale upwelling, primary production, and abundances of copepods and myctophid fish. Oceanic winds were found to be broad determinants of foraging distribution, and of the flight paths taken by the birds on long foraging trips to Antarctic waters. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The shearwaters displayed foraging site fidelity and overlap of foraging habitat between species and populations that may enhance their utility as indicators of Southern Ocean ecosystems. The results highlight the importance of upwellings due to interactions of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current with large-scale bottom topography, and the corresponding localised increases in the productivity of the Polar Front ecosystem.

  10. Impact of routine Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis (Bti) treatment on the availability of flying insects as prey for aerial feeding predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Timmermann, Ute; Becker, Norbert

    2017-12-01

    Since 1980, mosquito breeding habitats in the Upper Rhine Valley were routinely treated with Bacillus thuringiensis var. israelensis (Bti). Bti is considered to significantly reduce the number of mosquitoes, and - especially when used in higher dosages - to be toxic to other Nematocera species, e.g. Chironomidae, which could be food sources for aerial feeding predators. To investigate direct and indirect effects of routine Bti treatment on food sources for aerial feeding predators, the availability of flying insects in treated and untreated areas was compared. A car trap was used for insect collection, which allowed their exact spatiotemporal assignment. The statistical analysis revealed that insect taxa abundance was influenced differently by the factors season, temperature and time of day. Nematocera (Diptera) were the most frequently collected insects in all areas. Chironomidae were the predominant aquatic Nematocera. The comparison of treated and untreated sites did not show significant differences that would indicate any direct or indirect effect of routine Bti treatment on the availability of flying insects. Additional to food availability, food selection must be considered when investigating food resources for aerial feeding predators. In this study, food selection of Delichon urbicum (House Martin) as an example was investigated with the help of neck ring samples. The preferred prey of the investigated D. urbicum colony consisted of diurnal insects with terrestrial larvae (Aphidina, Brachycera, Coleoptera). Chironomidae were consumed, but not preferred.

  11. A shallow-diving seabird predator as an indicator of prey availability in southern California waters: A longitudinal study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horn, M. H.; Whitcombe, C. D.

    2015-06-01

    We tested the hypothesis that the Elegant Tern (Thalasseus elegans), a plunge-diving predator, is an indicator of changes in the prey community in southern California coastal waters. Shannon diversity (H‧) of the tern's diet determined from dropped fish collected variously at the three nesting sites for 18 years over a 21-year interval (1993-2013) showed no significant change in diet diversity. Based on a species-accumulation curve, total diet species represented about 70% of an extrapolated asymptotic richness. Abundance patterns of five prey species making up > 75% of prey numbers for all years were compared with abundance patterns of the same species in independent surveys obtained from zooplankton tows, bottom trawls and power-plant entrapments. Three of the five species - northern anchovy, kelp pipefish and California lizardfish - showed significant, positive correlations between diet and survey abundances. Even though the tern's diet has been dominated by anchovy and pipefish, its diet is still broad, with prey taxa representing > 75% of the 42 species groups making up the California shelf fish fauna. Altogether, our results support the hypothesis that the Elegant Tern, with its flexible diet, is a qualitative indicator, a sentinel, of changes in the prey communities in southern California coastal waters.

  12. Temporal clumping of prey and coexistence of unequal interferers: experiments on social forager groups of brown trout feeding on invertebrate drift

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jonsson, Mikael; Skov, Christian; Koed, Anders

    2008-01-01

    Environmental fluctuations have been proposed to enhance the coexistence of competing phenotypes. Evaluations are here presented on the effects of prey density and short-term temporal clumping of prey availability on the relative foraging success of unequal interferers in social forager groups...... of juvenile brown trout Salmo trutta feeding on drifting invertebrate prey (frozen chironomids). Groups of three trout with established linear dominance hierarchies (dominant, intermediate and subordinate) were subjected to three different total numbers of prey, combined with three different levels...

  13. The effects of local and landscape-scale habitat characteristics and prey availability on corridor use by carnivores: A comparison of two contrasting farmlands

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Červinka, J.; Šálek, Martin; Padyšáková, E.; Šmilauer, P.

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 21, č. 2 (2013), s. 105-113 ISSN 1617-1381 Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : Agricultural landscape * Carnivores * Corridors * Czech Republic * Habitat characteristics * Prey availability Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 1.833, year: 2013

  14. Structuring of zooplankton and fish larvae assemblages in a freshwater-influenced Greenlandic fjord- influence from hydrography and prey availability

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Swalethorp, Rasmus; Malanski, Evandro; Munk, Peter

    2015-01-01

    The recent increase in temperature and freshwater runoff in the Arctic will influence the functioning of the plankton ecosystem and hence the life of the fish larvae residing in these areas. Here, we studied the strength of physical– biological linkages and the adaptability of individual larval...... of the individual larval fish species. Larvae were feeding on a variety of prey taxa and sizes; some larval species were generalists, while others were more specialized or fed on alternative prey taxa. Differences in feeding strategies might have the consequence that the species will be differently affected...

  15. Seasonal trophic activity of the aquatic morphotype of Atelognathus patagonicus (Anura, Neobatrachia and prey availability in the littoral benthos of a permanent pond in Argentinean Patagonia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María Elena Cuello

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available The diet of the aquatic morphotype of Atelognathus patagonicus was studied in frogs collected from the Laguna Verde pond (Laguna Blanca National Park, Neuquén, Argentina. The content of 35 gastrointestinal tracts of post-metamorphic specimens from November 2003 to April 2006 was related to the composition of the benthos in their microhabitat. Number, size, occurrence and relative importance of preys, diversity of the diet, trophic niche breadth and electivitywere estimated for each season of the year. The diet consisted of aquatic arthropods. The composition of both the benthos and the food (number and occurrence of organisms in the diet were dominated by the amphipod Hyalella sp. The relative importance (IRI of Hyalella sp. in the diet was over 99% in summer and autumn, and 100% in winter and spring. Diptera and Copepoda in summer, and Dytiscidae and Ostracoda in autumn, had seasonal IRI values ≤ 0.2%. Trophic niche breadth was very low in summer and autumn, and null (= 0 in winter and spring. The mean number of preys per individual was highest in spring (19 preys/frog and lowest in winter (4 preys/frog. Frogs continued with their trophic activity in winter, even when the surface of the pond was frozen. There is a correspondence between the frogs’ main food item and its presence in the benthos.

  16. Spectral decomposition of regulatory thresholds for climate-driven fluctuations in hydro- and wind power availability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wörman, A.; Bottacin-Busolin, A.; Zmijewski, N.; Riml, J.

    2017-08-01

    Climate-driven fluctuations in the runoff and potential energy of surface water are generally large in comparison to the capacity of hydropower regulation, particularly when hydropower is used to balance the electricity production from covarying renewable energy sources such as wind power. To define the bounds of reservoir storage capacity, we introduce a dedicated reservoir volume that aggregates the storage capacity of several reservoirs to handle runoff from specific watersheds. We show how the storage bounds can be related to a spectrum of the climate-driven modes of variability in water availability and to the covariation between water and wind availability. A regional case study of the entire hydropower system in Sweden indicates that the longest regulation period possible to consider spans from a few days of individual subwatersheds up to several years, with an average limit of a couple of months. Watershed damping of the runoff substantially increases the longest considered regulation period and capacity. The high covariance found between the potential energy of the surface water and wind energy significantly reduces the longest considered regulation period when hydropower is used to balance the fluctuating wind power.

  17. Physiological condition of juvenile wading birds in relation to multiple landscape stressors in the Florida Everglades: effects of hydrology, prey availability, and mercury bioaccumulation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Garth Herring

    Full Text Available The physiological condition of juvenile birds can be influenced by multiple ecological stressors, and few studies have concurrently considered the effects of environmental contaminants in combination with ecological attributes that can influence foraging conditions and prey availability. Using three temporally distinct indices of physiological condition, we compared the physiological response of nestling great egrets (Ardea alba and white ibises (Eudocimus albus to changing prey availability, hydrology (water depth, recession rate, and mercury exposure in the Florida Everglades. We found that the physiological response of chicks varied between species and among environmental variables. Chick body condition (short-term index and fecal corticosterone levels (medium-term were influenced by wetland water depth, prey availability, region, and age, but not by mercury contamination. However, mercury exposure did influence heat shock protein 70 (HSP70 in egret chicks, indicating a longer-term physiological response to contamination. Our results indicate that the physiological condition of egret and ibis chicks were influenced by several environmental stressors, and the time frame of the effect may depend on the specialized foraging behavior of the adults provisioning the chicks.

  18. Physiological condition of juvenile wading birds in relation to multiple landscape stressors in the Florida Everglades: effects of hydrology, prey availability, and mercury bioaccumulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herring, Garth; Eagles-Smith, Collin A.; Gawlik, Dale E.; Beerens, James M.; Ackerman, Joshua T.

    2014-01-01

    The physiological condition of juvenile birds can be influenced by multiple ecological stressors, and few studies have concurrently considered the effects of environmental contaminants in combination with ecological attributes that can influence foraging conditions and prey availability. Using three temporally distinct indices of physiological condition, we compared the physiological response of nestling great egrets (Ardea alba) and white ibises (Eudocimus albus) to changing prey availability, hydrology (water depth, recession rate), and mercury exposure in the Florida Everglades. We found that the physiological response of chicks varied between species and among environmental variables. Chick body condition (short-term index) and fecal corticosterone levels (medium-term) were influenced by wetland water depth, prey availability, region, and age, but not by mercury contamination. However, mercury exposure did influence heat shock protein 70 (HSP70) in egret chicks, indicating a longer-term physiological response to contamination. Our results indicate that the physiological condition of egret and ibis chicks were influenced by several environmental stressors, and the time frame of the effect may depend on the specialized foraging behavior of the adults provisioning the chicks.

  19. Physiological condition of juvenile wading birds in relation to multiple landscape stressors in the Florida Everglades: effects of hydrology, prey availability, and mercury bioaccumulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herring, Garth; Eagles-Smith, Collin A; Gawlik, Dale E; Beerens, James M; Ackerman, Joshua T

    2014-01-01

    The physiological condition of juvenile birds can be influenced by multiple ecological stressors, and few studies have concurrently considered the effects of environmental contaminants in combination with ecological attributes that can influence foraging conditions and prey availability. Using three temporally distinct indices of physiological condition, we compared the physiological response of nestling great egrets (Ardea alba) and white ibises (Eudocimus albus) to changing prey availability, hydrology (water depth, recession rate), and mercury exposure in the Florida Everglades. We found that the physiological response of chicks varied between species and among environmental variables. Chick body condition (short-term index) and fecal corticosterone levels (medium-term) were influenced by wetland water depth, prey availability, region, and age, but not by mercury contamination. However, mercury exposure did influence heat shock protein 70 (HSP70) in egret chicks, indicating a longer-term physiological response to contamination. Our results indicate that the physiological condition of egret and ibis chicks were influenced by several environmental stressors, and the time frame of the effect may depend on the specialized foraging behavior of the adults provisioning the chicks.

  20. Reconstruction of historical changes in northern fur seal prey availability and diversity in the western North Pacific through individual-based analysis of dietary records

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiyota, Masashi; Yonezaki, Shiroh

    2017-06-01

    We analyzed long-term dietary records of northern fur seals (Callorhinus ursinus) to reconstruct historical changes in prey availability and diversity in the western North Pacific off northeastern Japan. The nominal relationships between the occurrence frequencies of fishes or squids in fur seal stomachs and the sampling locations reflected the spatial heterogeneity of fish and squid distributions along the shelf-slope-offshore continuum off northeastern Japan, whereas changes in the temporal occurrence frequencies reflected mainly the migration and foraging patterns of the fur seals. The occurrence probabilities of fishes and squids in fur seal stomachs were standardized by using generalized linear models to compensate for sampling biases in space and time. The reconstructed historical trends revealed decadal shifts in relatively high prey abundance-from mackerels in the 1970s to Japanese sardine in the 1980s and myctophids/sparkling enope squids in the 1990s-that were related to decadal shifts in the oceanographic regime. The sequential increase in mackerel and Japanese sardine abundances coincided with the annual catch trends of commercial fisheries. The index of overall prey availability calculated from the standardized occurrence probabilities of fishes and squids in fur seal stomachs was fairly stable over the decades.

  1. Habitat selection by Eurasian lynx (Lynx lynx) is primarily driven by avoidance of human activity during day and prey availability during night.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Filla, Marc; Premier, Joseph; Magg, Nora; Dupke, Claudia; Khorozyan, Igor; Waltert, Matthias; Bufka, Luděk; Heurich, Marco

    2017-08-01

    The greatest threat to the protected Eurasian lynx ( Lynx lynx ) in Central Europe is human-induced mortality. As the availability of lynx prey often peaks in human-modified areas, lynx have to balance successful prey hunting with the risk of encounters with humans. We hypothesized that lynx minimize this risk by adjusting habitat choices to the phases of the day and over seasons. We predicted that (1) due to avoidance of human-dominated areas during daytime, lynx range use is higher at nighttime, that (2) prey availability drives lynx habitat selection at night, whereas high cover, terrain inaccessibility, and distance to human infrastructure drive habitat selection during the day, and that (3) habitat selection also differs between seasons, with altitude being a dominant factor in winter. To test these hypotheses, we analyzed telemetry data (GPS, VHF) of 10 lynx in the Bohemian Forest Ecosystem (Germany, Czech Republic) between 2005 and 2013 using generalized additive mixed models and considering various predictor variables. Night ranges exceeded day ranges by more than 10%. At night, lynx selected open habitats, such as meadows, which are associated with high ungulate abundance. By contrast, during the day, lynx selected habitats offering dense understorey cover and rugged terrain away from human infrastructure. In summer, land-cover type greatly shaped lynx habitats, whereas in winter, lynx selected lower altitudes. We concluded that open habitats need to be considered for more realistic habitat models and contribute to future management and conservation (habitat suitability, carrying capacity) of Eurasian lynx in Central Europe.

  2. Ichthyoplankton gut analysis with relevance to prey availability in the waters of Lamon Bay, northeastern Luzon, Philippines

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bollozos, I.; Yniguez, A. T.; Palermo, J. H.; Cabrera, O. C.; Villanoy, C. L.

    2013-12-01

    The waters in the eastern part of Luzon are highly influenced by the western boundary current system of the western Pacific brought about by the bifurcation of the North Equatorial Current into the Kuroshio and Mindanao Current. Eddies are formed with varying intensities as an effect of the ENSO cycle. Three spatial zones were identified according to prominent current movements and circulations observed during the summer 2011 and 2012 oceanographic cruises. These events also affect the productivity in the surrounding waters. Plankton samples were collected to determine the relative abundances of major groups representing three trophic levels. The abundance and composition of phyto- and zooplankton major groups slightly varied among the zones. Gut analysis of fish larvae was then conducted to determine potential prey preference and linked to the phyto- and zooplankton densities.

  3. Yearly fluctuations of flower landscape in a Mediterranean scrubland: Consequences for floral resource availability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flo, Víctor; Bosch, Jordi; Arnan, Xavier; Primante, Clara; Martín González, Ana M; Barril-Graells, Helena; Rodrigo, Anselm

    2018-01-01

    Species flower production and flowering phenology vary from year to year due to extrinsic factors. Inter-annual variability in flowering patterns may have important consequences for attractiveness to pollinators, and ultimately, plant reproductive output. To understand the consequences of flowering pattern variability, a community approach is necessary because pollinator flower choice is highly dependent on flower context. Our objectives were: 1) To quantify yearly variability in flower density and phenology; 2) To evaluate whether changes in flowering patterns result in significant changes in pollen/nectar composition. We monitored weekly flowering patterns in a Mediterranean scrubland community (23 species) over 8 years. Floral resource availability was estimated based on field measures of pollen and nectar production per flower. We analysed inter-annual variation in flowering phenology (duration and date of peak bloom) and flower production, and inter-annual and monthly variability in flower, pollen and nectar species composition. We also investigated potential phylogenetic effects on inter-annual variability of flowering patterns. We found dramatic variation in yearly flower production both at the species and community levels. There was also substantial variation in flowering phenology. Importantly, yearly fluctuations were far from synchronous across species, and resulted in significant changes in floral resources availability and composition at the community level. Changes were especially pronounced late in the season, at a time when flowers are scarce and pollinator visitation rates are particularly high. We discuss the consequences of our findings for pollinator visitation and plant reproductive success in the current scenario of climate change.

  4. Yearly fluctuations of flower landscape in a Mediterranean scrubland: Consequences for floral resource availability.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Víctor Flo

    Full Text Available Species flower production and flowering phenology vary from year to year due to extrinsic factors. Inter-annual variability in flowering patterns may have important consequences for attractiveness to pollinators, and ultimately, plant reproductive output. To understand the consequences of flowering pattern variability, a community approach is necessary because pollinator flower choice is highly dependent on flower context. Our objectives were: 1 To quantify yearly variability in flower density and phenology; 2 To evaluate whether changes in flowering patterns result in significant changes in pollen/nectar composition. We monitored weekly flowering patterns in a Mediterranean scrubland community (23 species over 8 years. Floral resource availability was estimated based on field measures of pollen and nectar production per flower. We analysed inter-annual variation in flowering phenology (duration and date of peak bloom and flower production, and inter-annual and monthly variability in flower, pollen and nectar species composition. We also investigated potential phylogenetic effects on inter-annual variability of flowering patterns. We found dramatic variation in yearly flower production both at the species and community levels. There was also substantial variation in flowering phenology. Importantly, yearly fluctuations were far from synchronous across species, and resulted in significant changes in floral resources availability and composition at the community level. Changes were especially pronounced late in the season, at a time when flowers are scarce and pollinator visitation rates are particularly high. We discuss the consequences of our findings for pollinator visitation and plant reproductive success in the current scenario of climate change.

  5. Effects of fluctuating temperature and food availability on reproduction and lifespan

    OpenAIRE

    Schwartz, Tonia S.; Pearson, Phillip; Dawson, John; Allison, David B.; Gohlke, Julia M.

    2016-01-01

    Experimental studies on energetics and aging often remove two major factors that in part regulate the energy budget in a normal healthy individual: reproduction and fluctuating environmental conditions that challenge homeostasis. Here we use the cyclical parthenogenetic Daphnia pulex to evaluate the role of a fluctuating thermal environment on both reproduction and lifespan across six food concentrations. We test the hypotheses that (1) caloric restriction extends lifespan; (2) maximal reprod...

  6. Seabirds maintain offspring provisioning rate despite fluctuations in prey abundance: A multi-species functional response for guillemots in the North Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Smout, Sophie; Rindorf, Anna; Wanless, Sarah

    2013-01-01

    1. Seabirds that consume more than one prey type may adjust their foraging to maintain provisioning rates for their chicks. How energetically effective are these strategies, and what are the implications for the management of seabirds and their marine habitat? 2. A multi-species functional respon...

  7. Prey detection and prey capture in copepod nauplii.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eleonora Bruno

    Full Text Available Copepod nauplii are either ambush feeders that feed on motile prey or they produce a feeding current that entrains prey cells. It is unclear how ambush and feeding-current feeding nauplii perceive and capture prey. Attack jumps in ambush feeding nauplii should not be feasible at low Reynolds numbers due to the thick viscous boundary layer surrounding the attacking nauplius. We use high-speed video to describe the detection and capture of phytoplankton prey by the nauplii of two ambush feeding species (Acartia tonsa and Oithona davisae and by the nauplii of one feeding-current feeding species (Temora longicornis. We demonstrate that the ambush feeders both detect motile prey remotely. Prey detection elicits an attack jump, but the jump is not directly towards the prey, such as has been described for adult copepods. Rather, the nauplius jumps past the prey and sets up an intermittent feeding current that pulls in the prey from behind towards the mouth. The feeding-current feeding nauplius detects prey arriving in the feeding current but only when the prey is intercepted by the setae on the feeding appendages. This elicits an altered motion pattern of the feeding appendages that draws in the prey.

  8. Effects of fluctuating temperature and food availability on reproduction and lifespan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwartz, Tonia S; Pearson, Phillip; Dawson, John; Allison, David B; Gohlke, Julia M

    2016-12-15

    Experimental studies on energetics and aging often remove two major factors that in part regulate the energy budget in a normal healthy individual: reproduction and fluctuating environmental conditions that challenge homeostasis. Here we use the cyclical parthenogenetic Daphnia pulex to evaluate the role of a fluctuating thermal environment on both reproduction and lifespan across six food concentrations. We test the hypotheses that (1) caloric restriction extends lifespan; (2) maximal reproduction will come with a cost of shortened lifespan; and (3) at a given food concentration, relative to a metabolically equivalent constant temperature environment a diel fluctuating thermal environment will alter the allocation of energy to reproduction and lifespan to maintain homeostasis. We did not identify a level of food concentration that extended lifespan in response to caloric restriction, and we found no cost of reproduction in terms of lifespan. Rather, the individuals at the highest food levels generally had the highest reproductive output and the longest lifespans, the individuals at the intermediate food level decreased reproduction and maintained lifespan, and the individuals at the three lower food concentrations had a decrease in reproduction and lifespan as would be predicted with increasing levels of starvation. Fluctuating temperature had no effect on lifespan at any food concentration, but delayed time to reproductive maturity and decreased early reproductive output at all food concentrations. This suggests that a fluctuating temperature regimen activates molecular pathways that alter energy allocation. The costs of fluctuating temperature on reproduction were not consistent across the lifespan. Statistical interactions for age of peak reproduction and lifetime fecundity suggest that senescence of the reproductive system may vary between temperature regimens at the different food concentrations. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. The allometry of prey preferences.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gregor Kalinkat

    Full Text Available The distribution of weak and strong non-linear feeding interactions (i.e., functional responses across the links of complex food webs is critically important for their stability. While empirical advances have unravelled constraints on single-prey functional responses, their validity in the context of complex food webs where most predators have multiple prey remain uncertain. In this study, we present conceptual evidence for the invalidity of strictly density-dependent consumption as the null model in multi-prey experiments. Instead, we employ two-prey functional responses parameterised with allometric scaling relationships of the functional response parameters that were derived from a previous single-prey functional response study as novel null models. Our experiments included predators of different sizes from two taxonomical groups (wolf spiders and ground beetles simultaneously preying on one small and one large prey species. We define compliance with the null model predictions (based on two independent single-prey functional responses as passive preferences or passive switching, and deviations from the null model as active preferences or active switching. Our results indicate active and passive preferences for the larger prey by predators that are at least twice the size of the larger prey. Moreover, our approach revealed that active preferences increased significantly with the predator-prey body-mass ratio. Together with prior allometric scaling relationships of functional response parameters, this preference allometry may allow estimating the distribution of functional response parameters across the myriads of interactions in natural ecosystems.

  10. Wind effects on prey availability: How northward migrating waders use brackish and hypersaline lagoons in the Sivash, Ukraine

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verkuil, Yvonne I.; Koolhaas, Anita; Van Der Winden, Jan

    1993-01-01

    Large numbers of waders migrating northward in spring use the Sivash, a large system of shallow, brackish and hypersaline lagoons in the Black Sea and Azov Sea region (Ukraine). The bottoms of these lagoons are often uncovered by the wind. Hence, for waders the time and space available for feeding

  11. Fluctuations in Availability of Arthropods Correlated with Microchiropteran and Avian Predator Activities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I.L. Rautenbach

    1988-10-01

    Full Text Available Aerial arthropods were sampled by driving a standard transect along the riparian forest of the Luvuvhu River, South Africa, to assess hourly and seasonal variations in available biomass. Sampling, with an air-plankton net mounted on a vehicle, was conducted hourly over 48-hour periods during the fullest phase of the moon for each of eight months during 1986/87. Seasonal variation in availability of terrestrial arthropods was assessed by means of six pitfall traps set in the riparian forest. On a daily basis, the available biomass of aerial arthropods was found to increase markedly at and during the two hours following sunset, with a slight peak at or in the two hours preceding dawn. Highest monthly availability was found to correspond with the warm summer rainy season, with a marked increase after the first rains. The peak for terrestrial arthropods was found to occur later in the summer than for aerial arthropods. These patterns of arthropod availability correlate well with the daily activity rhythms and seasonal reproduc- tion of microchiropteran bats and their avian predators.

  12. Macroinvertebrate Prey Availability and Fish Diet Selectivity in Relation to Environmental Variables in Natural and Restoring North San Francisco Bay Tidal Marsh Channels

    OpenAIRE

    Emily R. Howe; Charles A. Simenstad; Jason D. Toft; Jeffrey R. Cordell; Stephen M. Bollens

    2014-01-01

    Tidal marsh wetlands provide important foraging habitat for a variety of estuarine fishes. Prey organisms include benthic–epibenthic macroinvertebrates, neustonic arthropods, and zooplankton. Little is known about the abundance and distribution of interior marsh macroinvertebrate communities in the San Francisco Estuary (estuary). We describe seasonal, regional, and site variation in the composition and abundance of neuston and benthic–epibenthic macroinvertebrates that inhabit tidal marsh ch...

  13. Macroinvertebrate Prey Availability and Fish Diet Selectivity in Relation to Environmental Variables in Natural and Restoring North San Francisco Bay Tidal Marsh Channels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emily R. Howe

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Tidal marsh wetlands provide important foraging habitat for a variety of estuarine fishes. Prey organisms include benthic–epibenthic macroinvertebrates, neustonic arthropods, and zooplankton. Little is known about the abundance and distribution of interior marsh macroinvertebrate communities in the San Francisco Estuary (estuary. We describe seasonal, regional, and site variation in the composition and abundance of neuston and benthic–epibenthic macroinvertebrates that inhabit tidal marsh channels, and relate these patterns to environmental conditions. We also describe spatial and temporal variation in diets of marsh-associated inland silverside, yellowfin goby, and western mosquitofish. Fish and invertebrates were sampled quarterly from October 2003 to June 2005 at six marsh sites located in three river systems of the northern estuary: Petaluma River, Napa River, and  the west Delta. Benthic/epibenthic macroinvertebrates and neuston responded to environmental variables related to seasonal changes (i.e., temperature, salinity, as well as those related to marsh structure (i.e., vegetation, channel edge. The greatest variation in abundance occurred seasonally for neuston and spatially for benthic–epibenthic organisms, suggesting that each community responds to different environmental drivers. Benthic/epibenthic invertebrate abundance and diversity was lowest in the west Delta, and increased with increasing salinity. Insect abundance increased during the spring and summer, while Collembolan (springtail abundance increased during the winter. Benthic/epibenthic macroinvertebrates dominated fish diets, supplemented by insects, with zooplankton playing a minor role. Diet compositions of the three fish species overlapped considerably, with strong selection indicated for epibenthic crustaceans—a surprising result given the typical classification of Menidia beryllina as a planktivore, Acanthogobius flavimanus as a benthic predator, and Gambusia

  14. Commercially available avian and mammalian whole prey diet items targeted for consumption by managed exotic and domestic pet felines: true metabolizable energy and amino acid digestibility using the precision-fed cecectomized rooster assay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerr, K R; Kappen, K L; Garner, L M; Utterback, P L; Parsons, C M; Swanson, K S

    2014-10-01

    supplements are readily available to address potential deficiencies and improve protein quality. A direct comparison of the ME of whole prey items by in vivo feline and rooster experiments is needed.

  15. The diel rhythms of biosonar behavior in the Yangtze finless porpoise (Neophocaena asiaeorientalis asiaeorientalis in the port of the Yangtze River: The correlation between prey availability and boat traffic.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhitao Wang

    Full Text Available Information on the habitat use of the critically endangered Yangtze finless porpoise (Neophocaena asiaeorientalis asiaeorientalis is critical for its conservation. The diel biosonar behavior of the porpoise in the port areas of the Yangtze River was examined along with simultaneous observations of fish density and boat traffic. Biosonar pulses from the porpoises were detected for 1233 min (5.77% over a 21,380 min duration of effective observations. In total, 190 (5.63% buzzes (an indication of prey capture attempts were recorded among the 3372 identified click trains. Of the 168 echolocation encounters (bouts of click trains less than eight min apart, 150 (89.3% involved single animals, indicating that solitary porpoises were frequently present and feeding in the port areas. Significant diel patterns were evident involving the biosonar behavior of the porpoises (including click trains and buzzes, fish density and boat traffic. The frequencies of the click trains and buzzes were significantly lower during the day than in the evening and at night, which suggests that porpoises in this region are primarily engaged in crepuscular and nocturnal foraging. The lack of a significant diel pattern in the echolocation encounters indicates the importance of the port in porpoise conservation. A forced feeding schedule may be associated with the lack of a significant correlation between porpoise acoustics and boat traffic. Overall, prey availability appears to be the primary factor that attracts porpoises. Additionally, porpoises tend to migrate or remain downstream in the morning and migrate or remain upstream in the evening, most likely to follow their prey. The findings of this study can be used to improve the conservation of the Yangtze finless porpoise.

  16. Selective Predation of a Stalking Predator on Ungulate Prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marco Heurich

    Full Text Available Prey selection is a key factor shaping animal populations and evolutionary dynamics. An optimal forager should target prey that offers the highest benefits in terms of energy content at the lowest costs. Predators are therefore expected to select for prey of optimal size. Stalking predators do not pursue their prey long, which may lead to a more random choice of prey individuals. Due to difficulties in assessing the composition of available prey populations, data on prey selection of stalking carnivores are still scarce. We show how the stalking predator Eurasian lynx (Lynx lynx selects prey individuals based on species identity, age, sex and individual behaviour. To address the difficulties in assessing prey population structure, we confirm inferred selection patterns by using two independent data sets: (1 data of 387 documented kills of radio-collared lynx were compared to the prey population structure retrieved from systematic camera trapping using Manly's standardized selection ratio alpha and (2 data on 120 radio-collared roe deer were analysed using a Cox proportional hazards model. Among the larger red deer prey, lynx selected against adult males-the largest and potentially most dangerous prey individuals. In roe deer lynx preyed selectively on males and did not select for a specific age class. Activity during high risk periods reduced the risk of falling victim to a lynx attack. Our results suggest that the stalking predator lynx actively selects for size, while prey behaviour induces selection by encounter and stalking success rates.

  17. The smell of success: the amount of prey consumed by predators determines the strength and range of cascading non-consumptive effects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marc Weissburg

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available We examined whether chemically mediated risk perception by prey and the effects of changes in prey behavior on basal resources vary as a function of the amount of prey biomass consumed by the predator. We studied these issues using a tritrophic system composed of blue crabs, Callinectes sapidus (top predator, mud crabs Panopeus herbstii (intermediate prey, and oysters Crassostrea virginica (basal resource. Working in a well characterized field environment where experiments preserve natural patterns of water flow, we found that biomass consumed by a predator determines the range, intensity and nature of prey aversive responses. Predators that consume large amounts of prey flesh more strongly diminish consumption of basal resources by prey and exert effects over a larger range (in space and time compared to predators that have eaten less. Less well-fed predators produce weaker effects, with the consequence that behaviorally mediated cascades preferentially occur in refuge habitats. Well-fed predators affected prey behavior and increased basal resources up to distances of 1–1.5 m, whereas predators fed restricted diet evoked changes in prey only when they were extremely close, typically 50 cm or less. Thus, consumptive and non-consumptive effects may be coupled; predators that have a greater degree of predatory success will affect prey traits more strongly and non-consumptive and consumptive effects may fluctuate in tandem, with some lag. Moreover, differences among predators in their degree of prey capture will create spatial and temporal variance in risk cue availability in the absence of underlying environmental effects.

  18. Prey responses to predator chemical cues: disentangling the importance of the number and biomass of prey consumed.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael W McCoy

    Full Text Available To effectively balance investment in predator defenses versus other traits, organisms must accurately assess predation risk. Chemical cues caused by predation events are indicators of risk for prey in a wide variety of systems, but the relationship between how prey perceive risk in relation to the amount of prey consumed by predators is poorly understood. While per capita predation rate is often used as the metric of relative risk, studies aimed at quantifying predator-induced defenses commonly control biomass of prey consumed as the metric of risk. However, biomass consumed can change by altering either the number or size of prey consumed. In this study we determine whether phenotypic plasticity to predator chemical cues depends upon prey biomass consumed, prey number consumed, or both. We examine the growth response of red-eyed treefrog tadpoles (Agalychnis callidryas to cues from a larval dragonfly (Anax amazili. Biomass consumed was manipulated by either increasing the number of prey while holding individual prey size constant, or by holding the number of prey constant and varying individual prey size. We address two questions. (i Do prey reduce growth rate in response to chemical cues in a dose dependent manner? (ii Does the magnitude of the response depend on whether prey consumption increases via number or size of prey? We find that the phenotypic response of prey is an asymptotic function of prey biomass consumed. However, the asymptotic response is higher when more prey are consumed. Our findings have important implications for evaluating past studies and how future experiments should be designed. A stronger response to predation cues generated by more individual prey deaths is consistent with models that predict prey sensitivity to per capita risk, providing a more direct link between empirical and theoretical studies which are often focused on changes in population sizes not individual biomass.

  19. Sub-indicator: Prey fish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weidel, Brian C.; Dunlop, Erin

    2017-01-01

    , native species in Lake Huron comprised less than 10% of the community in 1970, but since alewife have declined, now represent nearly 80% of the community (Figure 2). Prey fish data are most consistent for in-lake populations, which are reported here; data from connecting channels was not consistently available across the basin. Abundance was not used to judge prey fish status since successful, basin-wide management actions, including mineral nutrient input reductions and piscivore restoration, both inherently reduce prey fish abundance. However, recent abundance trends as they relate to predator prey balance are referenced, such as in Lakes Michigan and Huron where piscivore stocking is being reduced to lower predation demand on prey fish populations and maintain sport fisheries.

  20. Prey preferences of the jaguar Panthera onca reflect the post-Pleistocene demise of large prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matt W Hayward

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Documenting the impacts of the Pleistocene megafaunal extinctions on predator-prey interactions is a challenge because of the incomplete fossil record and depauperate extant community structure. We used a comparative ecological approach to investigate whether the existing prey preference patterns of jaguars Panthera onca were potentially affected by the Pleistocene extinctions in the Americas compared with large felids in Africa and Asia. We reviewed the literature and found 25 studies reporting 3214 jaguar kills recorded throughout the species’ distribution. We found that jaguars significantly preferred capybara Hydrochaeris hydrochaeris and giant anteater Myrmecophaga tridactyla, and avoided agoutis, carnivorans, primates, black-eared opossum Didelphis marsupialis and tapirs. Generalised linear models showed that jaguars select prey primarily based on socio-ecological and behavioural traits (abundance and herd size, rather than morphological characteristics (body size. Nonetheless, their accessible prey weight range was 6-60 kg, preferred prey weight range was 45-85 kg, and mean mass of significantly preferred prey was 32 ± 13 kg leading to a predator to prey body mass ratio of 1:0.53, which is much less than that of other solitary felids. Compared with other large, solitary felids, jaguars have an unusual predator to prey body mass ratio, show limited effect of prey morphology as a driver of prey selection, lack evidence of optimal foraging beyond their preferred prey, and an absence of preferentially hunting on Cetartiodactyla herbivores. These features, coupled with the reduction in jaguar body mass since the Pleistocene, suggest that the loss of larger potential prey items within the preferred and accessible weight ranges at the end-Pleistocene still affects jaguar predatory behaviour. It may be that jaguars survived this mass extinction event by preferentially preying on relatively small species.

  1. Wild North Island Robins (Petroica longipes respond to Prey Animacy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexis Garland

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available North Island robins of New Zealand are a food hoarding species, which is unique in that they almost exclusively cache highly perishable hunted insects for later retrieval. In order to do so, they either kill and dismember or paralyze their prey for caching, depending on the prey size and kind. The present study comprises two experiments, using a Violation of Expectancy (VoE paradigm to examine variation in search behavior response to different prey conditions. The first experiment presents three different types of prey (mealworms, earthworms and locusts in expected (present and unexpected (absent conditions. The second experiment presents prey in varying states of animacy (alive and whole, dead and whole, dead and halved, and an inanimate stick and reveals prey in expected (same state or unexpected (differing state conditions. While robins did not respond with differential search times to different types of unexpectedly missing prey in Experiment 1, in Experiment 2 robins searched longer in conditions where prey was found in a differing state of animacy than initially shown. Robins also searched longer for prey when immediately consuming retrieved prey than when caching retrieved prey. Results indicate that North Island robins may be sensitive to prey animacy upon storage and retrieval of insect prey; such information could play a role in storage, pilfering and retrieval strategies of such a perishable food source.

  2. The Dynamics of a Nonautonomous Predator-Prey Model with Infertility Control in the Prey

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaomei Feng

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available A nonautonomous predator-prey model with infertility control in the prey is formulated and investigated. Threshold conditions for the permanence and extinction of fertility prey and infertility prey are established. Some new threshold values of integral form are obtained. For the periodic cases, these threshold conditions act as sharp threshold values for the permanence and extinction of fertility prey and infertility prey. There are also mounting concerns that the quantity of biological sterile drug is obtained in the process of the prevention and control of pest in the grasslands and farmland. Finally, two examples are given to illustrate the main results of this paper. The numerical simulations shown that, when the pest population is permanet, different dynamic behaviors may be found in this model, such as the global attractivity and the chaotic attractor.

  3. Gluttonous predators: how to estimate prey size when there are too many prey

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MS. Araújo

    Full Text Available Prey size is an important factor in food consumption. In studies of feeding ecology, prey items are usually measured individually using calipers or ocular micrometers. Among amphibians and reptiles, there are species that feed on large numbers of small prey items (e.g. ants, termites. This high intake makes it difficult to estimate prey size consumed by these animals. We addressed this problem by developing and evaluating a procedure for subsampling the stomach contents of such predators in order to estimate prey size. Specifically, we developed a protocol based on a bootstrap procedure to obtain a subsample with a precision error of at the most 5%, with a confidence level of at least 95%. This guideline should reduce the sampling effort and facilitate future studies on the feeding habits of amphibians and reptiles, and also provide a means of obtaining precise estimates of prey size.

  4. Effects of vole fluctuations on the population dynamics of the barn owl Tyto alba

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Klok, T.C.; Roos, A.M.

    2007-01-01

    Many predator species feed on prey that fluctuates in abundance from year to year. Birds of prey can face large fluctuations in food abundance i.e. small mammals, especially voles. These annual changes in prey abundance strongly affect the reproductive success and mortality of the individual

  5. Modelling landscape-level numerical responses of predators to prey: the case of cats and rabbits.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennyffer Cruz

    Full Text Available Predator-prey systems can extend over large geographical areas but empirical modelling of predator-prey dynamics has been largely limited to localised scales. This is due partly to difficulties in estimating predator and prey abundances over large areas. Collection of data at suitably large scales has been a major problem in previous studies of European rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus and their predators. This applies in Western Europe, where conserving rabbits and predators such as Iberian lynx (Lynx pardinus is important, and in other parts of the world where rabbits are an invasive species supporting populations of introduced, and sometimes native, predators. In pastoral regions of New Zealand, rabbits are the primary prey of feral cats (Felis catus that threaten native fauna. We estimate the seasonal numerical response of cats to fluctuations in rabbit numbers in grassland-shrubland habitat across the Otago and Mackenzie regions of the South Island of New Zealand. We use spotlight counts over 1645 km of transects to estimate rabbit and cat abundances with a novel modelling approach that accounts simultaneously for environmental stochasticity, density dependence and varying detection probability. Our model suggests that cat abundance is related consistently to rabbit abundance in spring and summer, possibly through increased rabbit numbers improving the fecundity and juvenile survival of cats. Maintaining rabbits at low abundance should therefore suppress cat numbers, relieving predation pressure on native prey. Our approach provided estimates of the abundance of cats and rabbits over a large geographical area. This was made possible by repeated sampling within each season, which allows estimation of detection probabilities. A similar approach could be applied to predator-prey systems elsewhere, and could be adapted to any method of direct observation in which there is no double-counting of individuals. Reliable estimates of numerical

  6. Prey aggregation is an effective olfactory predator avoidance strategy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Asa Johannesen

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Predator–prey interactions have a major effect on species abundance and diversity, and aggregation is a well-known anti-predator behaviour. For immobile prey, the effectiveness of aggregation depends on two conditions: (a the inability of the predator to consume all prey in a group and (b detection of a single large group not being proportionally easier than that of several small groups. How prey aggregation influences predation rates when visual cues are restricted, such as in turbid water, has not been thoroughly investigated. We carried out foraging (predation experiments using a fish predator and (dead chironomid larvae as prey in both laboratory and field settings. In the laboratory, a reduction in visual cue availability (in turbid water led to a delay in the location of aggregated prey compared to when visual cues were available. Aggregated prey suffered high mortality once discovered, leading to better survival of dispersed prey in the longer term. We attribute this to the inability of the dead prey to take evasive action. In the field (where prey were placed in feeding stations that allowed transmission of olfactory but not visual cues, aggregated (large groups and semi-dispersed prey survived for longer than dispersed prey—including long term survival. Together, our results indicate that similar to systems where predators hunt using vision, aggregation is an effective anti-predator behaviour for prey avoiding olfactory predators.

  7. Prey-mediated avoidance of an intraguild predator by its intraguild prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, R.R.; Blankenship, T.L.; Hooten, M.B.; Shivik, J.A.

    2010-01-01

    Intraguild (IG) predation is an important factor influencing community structure, yet factors allowing coexistence of IG predator and IG prey are not well understood. The existence of spatial refuges for IG prey has recently been noted for their importance in allowing coexistence. However, reduction in basal prey availability might lead IG prey to leave spatial refuges for greater access to prey, leading to increased IG predation and fewer opportunities for coexistence. We determined how the availability of prey affected space-use patterns of bobcats (Lynx rufus, IG prey) in relation to coyote space-use patterns (Canis latrans, IG predators). We located animals from fall 2007 to spring 2009 and estimated bobcat home ranges and core areas seasonally. For each bobcat relocation, we determined intensity of coyote use, distance to water, small mammal biomass, and mean small mammal biomass of the home range during the season the location was collected. We built generalized linear mixed models and used Akaike Information Criteria to determine which factors best predicted bobcat space use. Coyote intensity was a primary determinant of bobcat core area location. In bobcat home ranges with abundant prey, core areas occurred where coyote use was low, but shifted to areas intensively used by coyotes when prey declined. High spatial variability in basal prey abundance allowed some bobcats to avoid coyotes while at the same time others were forced into more risky areas. Our results suggest that multiple behavioral strategies associated with spatial variation in basal prey abundance likely allow IG prey and IG predators to coexist. ?? 2010 Springer-Verlag.

  8. Parasites as prey

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Goedknegt, M.A.; Welsh, J.E.; Thieltges, D.W.

    2012-01-01

    Parasites are usually considered to use their hosts as a resource for energy. However, there is increasing awareness that parasites can also become a resource themselves and serve as prey for other organisms. Here we describe various types of predation in which parasites act as prey for other

  9. Effects of prey abundance, distribution, visual contrast and morphology on selection by a pelagic piscivore

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansen, Adam G.; Beauchamp, David A.

    2014-01-01

    Most predators eat only a subset of possible prey. However, studies evaluating diet selection rarely measure prey availability in a manner that accounts for temporal–spatial overlap with predators, the sensory mechanisms employed to detect prey, and constraints on prey capture.We evaluated the diet selection of cutthroat trout (Oncorhynchus clarkii) feeding on a diverse planktivore assemblage in Lake Washington to test the hypothesis that the diet selection of piscivores would reflect random (opportunistic) as opposed to non-random (targeted) feeding, after accounting for predator–prey overlap, visual detection and capture constraints.Diets of cutthroat trout were sampled in autumn 2005, when the abundance of transparent, age-0 longfin smelt (Spirinchus thaleichthys) was low, and 2006, when the abundance of smelt was nearly seven times higher. Diet selection was evaluated separately using depth-integrated and depth-specific (accounted for predator–prey overlap) prey abundance. The abundance of different prey was then adjusted for differences in detectability and vulnerability to predation to see whether these factors could explain diet selection.In 2005, cutthroat trout fed non-randomly by selecting against the smaller, transparent age-0 longfin smelt, but for the larger age-1 longfin smelt. After adjusting prey abundance for visual detection and capture, cutthroat trout fed randomly. In 2006, depth-integrated and depth-specific abundance explained the diets of cutthroat trout well, indicating random feeding. Feeding became non-random after adjusting for visual detection and capture. Cutthroat trout selected strongly for age-0 longfin smelt, but against similar sized threespine stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus) and larger age-1 longfin smelt in 2006. Overlap with juvenile sockeye salmon (O. nerka) was minimal in both years, and sockeye salmon were rare in the diets of cutthroat trout.The direction of the shift between random and non-random selection

  10. Modeling Behavior by Coastal River Otter (Lontra Canadensis in Response to Prey Availability in Prince William Sound, Alaska: A Spatially-Explicit Individual-Based Approach.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shannon E Albeke

    Full Text Available Effects of climate change on animal behavior and cascading ecosystem responses are rarely evaluated. In coastal Alaska, social river otters (Lontra Canadensis, largely males, cooperatively forage on schooling fish and use latrine sites to communicate group associations and dominance. Conversely, solitary otters, mainly females, feed on intertidal-demersal fish and display mutual avoidance via scent marking. This behavioral variability creates "hotspots" of nutrient deposition and affects plant productivity and diversity on the terrestrial landscape. Because the abundance of schooling pelagic fish is predicted to decline with climate change, we developed a spatially-explicit individual-based model (IBM of otter behavior and tested six scenarios based on potential shifts to distribution patterns of schooling fish. Emergent patterns from the IBM closely mimicked observed otter behavior and landscape use in the absence of explicit rules of intraspecific attraction or repulsion. Model results were most sensitive to rules regarding spatial memory and activity state following an encounter with a fish school. With declining availability of schooling fish, the number of social groups and the time simulated otters spent in the company of conspecifics declined. Concurrently, model results suggested an elevation of defecation rate, a 25% increase in nitrogen transport to the terrestrial landscape, and significant changes to the spatial distribution of "hotspots" with declines in schooling fish availability. However, reductions in availability of schooling fish could lead to declines in otter density over time.

  11. Prey perception in feeding-current feeding copepods

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kiørboe, Thomas; Goncalves, Rodrigo J.; Florian Couespel, Damien

    2016-01-01

    We reply to the comments of Paffenhöfer and Jiang () who argues that remote chemical prey perception is necessary for feeding-current feeding copepods to fulfill their nutritional requirements in a dilute ocean, that remote chemical prey detection may only be observed at very low prey concentrati......We reply to the comments of Paffenhöfer and Jiang () who argues that remote chemical prey perception is necessary for feeding-current feeding copepods to fulfill their nutritional requirements in a dilute ocean, that remote chemical prey detection may only be observed at very low prey...... cells have short intense leakage burst, only a very small fraction of prey cells would be available to the copepod at any instance in time and, thus would be inefficient at low prey concentration. Finally, we report a few new observations of prey capture in two species of copepods, Temora longicornis...... and Centropages hamatus, offered a 45-μm sized dinoflagellate at very low concentration. The observed short prey detection distances, up to a few prey cell radii, are consistent with mechanoreception and we argue briefly that near-field mechanoreception is the most likely and common prey perception mechanism...

  12. Sequential assessment of prey through the use of multiple sensory cues by an eavesdropping bat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Page, Rachel A.; Schnelle, Tanja; Kalko, Elisabeth K. V.; Bunge, Thomas; Bernal, Ximena E.

    2012-06-01

    Predators are often confronted with a broad diversity of potential prey. They rely on cues associated with prey quality and palatability to optimize their hunting success and to avoid consuming toxic prey. Here, we investigate a predator's ability to assess prey cues during capture, handling, and consumption when confronted with conflicting information about prey quality. We used advertisement calls of a preferred prey item (the túngara frog) to attract fringe-lipped bats, Trachops cirrhosus, then offered palatable, poisonous, and chemically manipulated anurans as prey. Advertisement calls elicited an attack response, but as bats approached, they used additional sensory cues in a sequential manner to update their information about prey size and palatability. While both palatable and poisonous small anurans were readily captured, large poisonous toads were approached but not contacted suggesting the use of echolocation for assessment of prey size at close range. Once prey was captured, bats used chemical cues to make final, post-capture decisions about whether to consume the prey. Bats dropped small, poisonous toads as well as palatable frogs coated in toad toxins either immediately or shortly after capture. Our study suggests that echolocation and chemical cues obtained at close range supplement information obtained from acoustic cues at long range. Updating information about prey quality minimizes the occurrence of costly errors and may be advantageous in tracking temporal and spatial fluctuations of prey and exploiting novel food sources. These findings emphasize the sequential, complex nature of prey assessment that may allow exploratory and flexible hunting behaviors.

  13. Do phytoseiid mites select the best prey species in terms of reproductive success?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dicke, M.; Sabelis, M.W.; Jong, de M.; Alers, M.P.T.

    1990-01-01

    Optimal foraging theory predicts that predators prefer those prey species that are most rewarding in terms of reproductive success, which is dependent on prey quality and prey availability. To investigate which selection pressures may have moulded prey preference in an acarine system consisting of

  14. Prey detection and prey capture in copepod nauplii

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bruno, Eleonora; Borg, Marc Andersen; Kiørboe, Thomas

    2012-01-01

    Copepod nauplii are either ambush feeders that feed on motile prey or they produce a feeding current that entrains prey cells. It is unclear how ambush and feeding-current feeding nauplii perceive and capture prey. Attack jumps in ambush feeding nauplii should not be feasible at low Reynolds...... (Temora longicornis). We demonstrate that the ambush feeders both detect motile prey remotely. Prey detection elicits an attack jump, but the jump is not directly towards the prey, such as has been described for adult copepods. Rather, the nauplius jumps past the prey and sets up an intermittent feeding...

  15. Sensitivities and Tipping Points of Power System Operations to Fluctuations Caused by Water Availability and Fuel Prices

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Connell, M.; Macknick, J.; Voisin, N.; Fu, T.

    2017-12-01

    The western US electric grid is highly dependent upon water resources for reliable operation. Hydropower and water-cooled thermoelectric technologies represent 67% of generating capacity in the western region of the US. While water resources provide a significant amount of generation and reliability for the grid, these same resources can represent vulnerabilities during times of drought or low flow conditions. A lack of water affects water-dependent technologies and can result in more expensive generators needing to run in order to meet electric grid demand, resulting in higher electricity prices and a higher cost to operate the grid. A companion study assesses the impact of changes in water availability and air temperatures on power operations by directly derating hydro and thermo-electric generators. In this study we assess the sensitivities and tipping points of water availability compared with higher fuel prices in electricity sector operations. We evaluate the impacts of varying electricity prices by modifying fuel prices for coal and natural gas. We then analyze the difference in simulation results between changes in fuel prices in combination with water availability and air temperature variability. We simulate three fuel price scenarios for a 2010 baseline scenario along with 100 historical and future hydro-climate conditions. We use the PLEXOS electricity production cost model to optimize power system dispatch and cost decisions under each combination of fuel price and water constraint. Some of the metrics evaluated are total production cost, generation type mix, emissions, transmission congestion, and reserve procurement. These metrics give insight to how strained the system is, how much flexibility it still has, and to what extent water resource availability or fuel prices drive changes in the electricity sector operations. This work will provide insights into current electricity operations as well as future cases of increased penetration of variable

  16. Global Asymptotic Stability of a Predator-Prey Model with Modified Leslie-Gower and Holling-Type II Schemes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shengbin Yu

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available We study the predator-prey model proposed by Aziz-Alaoui and Okiye (Appl. Math. Lett. 16 (2003 1069–1075 First, the structure of equilibria and their linearized stability is investigated. Then, we provide two sufficient conditions on the global asymptotic stability of a positive equilibrium by employing the Fluctuation Lemma and Lyapunov direct method, respectively. The obtained results not only improve but also supplement existing ones.

  17. Prey selectivity affects reproductive success of a corallivorous reef fish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brooker, Rohan M; Jones, Geoffrey P; Munday, Philip L

    2013-06-01

    Most animals consume a narrower range of food resources than is potentially available in the environment, but the underlying basis for these preferences is often poorly understood. Foraging theory predicts that prey selection should represent a trade-off between prey preferences based on nutritional value and prey availability. That is, species should consume preferred prey when available, but select less preferred prey when preferred prey is rare. We employed both field observation and laboratory experiments to examine the relationship between prey selection and preferences in the obligate coral-feeding filefish, Oxymonacanthus longirostris. To determine the drivers of prey selection, we experimentally established prey preferences in choice arenas and tested the consequences of prey preferences for key fitness-related parameters. Field studies showed that individuals fed almost exclusively on live corals from the genus Acropora. While diet was dominated by the most abundant species, Acropora nobilis, fish appeared to preferentially select rarer acroporids, such as A. millepora and A. hyacinthus. Prey choice experiments confirmed strong preferences for these corals, suggesting that field consumption is constrained by availability. In a longer-term feeding experiment, reproductive pairs fed on non-preferred corals exhibited dramatic reductions to body weight, and in hepatic and gonad condition, compared with those fed preferred corals. The majority of pairs fed preferred corals spawned frequently, while no spawning was observed for any pairs fed a non-preferred species of coral. These experiments suggest that fish distinguish between available corals based on their intrinsic value as prey, that reproductive success is dependent on the presence of particular coral species, and that differential loss of preferred corals could have serious consequences for the population success of these dietary specialists.

  18. Prey Selection of Scandinavian Wolves: Single Large or Several Small?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Håkan Sand

    Full Text Available Research on large predator-prey interactions are often limited to the predators' primary prey, with the potential for prey switching in systems with multiple ungulate species rarely investigated. We evaluated wolf (Canis lupus prey selection at two different spatial scales, i.e., inter- and intra-territorial, using data from 409 ungulate wolf-kills in an expanding wolf population in Scandinavia. This expansion includes a change from a one-prey into a two-prey system with variable densities of one large-sized ungulate; moose (Alces alces and one small-sized ungulate; roe deer (Capreolus capreolus. Among wolf territories, the proportion of roe deer in wolf kills was related to both pack size and roe deer density, but not to moose density. Pairs of wolves killed a higher proportion of roe deer than did packs, and wolves switched to kill more roe deer as their density increased above a 1:1 ratio in relation to the availability of the two species. At the intra-territorial level, wolves again responded to changes in roe deer density in their prey selection whereas we found no effect of snow depth, time during winter, or other predator-related factors on the wolves' choice to kill moose or roe deer. Moose population density was only weakly related to intra-territorial prey selection. Our results show that the functional response of wolves on moose, the species hitherto considered as the main prey, was strongly dependent on the density of a smaller, alternative, ungulate prey. The impact of wolf predation on the prey species community is therefore likely to change with the composition of the multi-prey species community along with the geographical expansion of the wolf population.

  19. Coexistence for an Almost Periodic Predator-Prey Model with Intermittent Predation Driven by Discontinuous Prey Dispersal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yantao Luo

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available An almost periodic predator-prey model with intermittent predation and prey discontinuous dispersal is studied in this paper, which differs from the classical continuous and impulsive dispersal predator-prey models. The intermittent predation behavior of the predator species only happens in the channels between two patches where the discontinuous migration movement of the prey species occurs. Using analytic approaches and comparison theorems of the impulsive differential equations, sufficient criteria on the boundedness, permanence, and coexistence for this system are established. Finally, numerical simulations demonstrate that, for an intermittent predator-prey model, both the intermittent predation and intrinsic growth rates of the prey and predator species can greatly impact the permanence, extinction, and coexistence of the population.

  20. Prey-Predator Model with a Nonlocal Bistable Dynamics of Prey

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    Malay Banerjee

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Spatiotemporal pattern formation in integro-differential equation models of interacting populations is an active area of research, which has emerged through the introduction of nonlocal intra- and inter-specific interactions. Stationary patterns are reported for nonlocal interactions in prey and predator populations for models with prey-dependent functional response, specialist predator and linear intrinsic death rate for predator species. The primary goal of our present work is to consider nonlocal consumption of resources in a spatiotemporal prey-predator model with bistable reaction kinetics for prey growth in the absence of predators. We derive the conditions of the Turing and of the spatial Hopf bifurcation around the coexisting homogeneous steady-state and verify the analytical results through extensive numerical simulations. Bifurcations of spatial patterns are also explored numerically.

  1. Process-based models of feeding and prey selection in larval fish

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fiksen, O.; MacKenzie, Brian

    2002-01-01

    believed to be important to prey selectivity and environmental regulation of feeding in fish. We include the sensitivity of prey to the hydrodynamic signal generated by approaching larval fish and a simple model of the potential loss of prey due to turbulence whereby prey is lost if it leaves...... jig dry wt l(-1). The spatio-temporal fluctuation of turbulence (tidal cycle) and light (sun height) over the bank generates complex structure in the patterns of food intake of larval fish, with different patterns emerging for small and large larvae....

  2. The Allometry of Prey Preferences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalinkat, Gregor; Rall, Björn Christian; Vucic-Pestic, Olivera; Brose, Ulrich

    2011-01-01

    The distribution of weak and strong non-linear feeding interactions (i.e., functional responses) across the links of complex food webs is critically important for their stability. While empirical advances have unravelled constraints on single-prey functional responses, their validity in the context of complex food webs where most predators have multiple prey remain uncertain. In this study, we present conceptual evidence for the invalidity of strictly density-dependent consumption as the null model in multi-prey experiments. Instead, we employ two-prey functional responses parameterised with allometric scaling relationships of the functional response parameters that were derived from a previous single-prey functional response study as novel null models. Our experiments included predators of different sizes from two taxonomical groups (wolf spiders and ground beetles) simultaneously preying on one small and one large prey species. We define compliance with the null model predictions (based on two independent single-prey functional responses) as passive preferences or passive switching, and deviations from the null model as active preferences or active switching. Our results indicate active and passive preferences for the larger prey by predators that are at least twice the size of the larger prey. Moreover, our approach revealed that active preferences increased significantly with the predator-prey body-mass ratio. Together with prior allometric scaling relationships of functional response parameters, this preference allometry may allow estimating the distribution of functional response parameters across the myriads of interactions in natural ecosystems. PMID:21998724

  3. Prey Selection of Scandinavian Wolves: Single Large or Several Small?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eklund, Ann; Zimmermann, Barbara; Wikenros, Camilla; Wabakken, Petter

    2016-01-01

    Research on large predator-prey interactions are often limited to the predators’ primary prey, with the potential for prey switching in systems with multiple ungulate species rarely investigated. We evaluated wolf (Canis lupus) prey selection at two different spatial scales, i.e., inter- and intra-territorial, using data from 409 ungulate wolf-kills in an expanding wolf population in Scandinavia. This expansion includes a change from a one-prey into a two-prey system with variable densities of one large-sized ungulate; moose (Alces alces) and one small-sized ungulate; roe deer (Capreolus capreolus). Among wolf territories, the proportion of roe deer in wolf kills was related to both pack size and roe deer density, but not to moose density. Pairs of wolves killed a higher proportion of roe deer than did packs, and wolves switched to kill more roe deer as their density increased above a 1:1 ratio in relation to the availability of the two species. At the intra-territorial level, wolves again responded to changes in roe deer density in their prey selection whereas we found no effect of snow depth, time during winter, or other predator-related factors on the wolves’ choice to kill moose or roe deer. Moose population density was only weakly related to intra-territorial prey selection. Our results show that the functional response of wolves on moose, the species hitherto considered as the main prey, was strongly dependent on the density of a smaller, alternative, ungulate prey. The impact of wolf predation on the prey species community is therefore likely to change with the composition of the multi-prey species community along with the geographical expansion of the wolf population. PMID:28030549

  4. Prey Selection of Scandinavian Wolves: Single Large or Several Small?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sand, Håkan; Eklund, Ann; Zimmermann, Barbara; Wikenros, Camilla; Wabakken, Petter

    2016-01-01

    Research on large predator-prey interactions are often limited to the predators' primary prey, with the potential for prey switching in systems with multiple ungulate species rarely investigated. We evaluated wolf (Canis lupus) prey selection at two different spatial scales, i.e., inter- and intra-territorial, using data from 409 ungulate wolf-kills in an expanding wolf population in Scandinavia. This expansion includes a change from a one-prey into a two-prey system with variable densities of one large-sized ungulate; moose (Alces alces) and one small-sized ungulate; roe deer (Capreolus capreolus). Among wolf territories, the proportion of roe deer in wolf kills was related to both pack size and roe deer density, but not to moose density. Pairs of wolves killed a higher proportion of roe deer than did packs, and wolves switched to kill more roe deer as their density increased above a 1:1 ratio in relation to the availability of the two species. At the intra-territorial level, wolves again responded to changes in roe deer density in their prey selection whereas we found no effect of snow depth, time during winter, or other predator-related factors on the wolves' choice to kill moose or roe deer. Moose population density was only weakly related to intra-territorial prey selection. Our results show that the functional response of wolves on moose, the species hitherto considered as the main prey, was strongly dependent on the density of a smaller, alternative, ungulate prey. The impact of wolf predation on the prey species community is therefore likely to change with the composition of the multi-prey species community along with the geographical expansion of the wolf population.

  5. Behavior of prey links midwater and demersal piscivorous reef fishes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter J. Auster

    Full Text Available Pelagic and demersal guilds of piscivorous fishes are linked by a variety of biological and physical processes that mediate interactions with common prey species. Understanding the behaviors of predators and prey can provide insight into the conditions that make such linkages possible. Here we report on the behaviors of mid-water piscivorous fishes and the responses of prey that produce feeding opportunities for demersal piscivorous fishes associated with "live bottom" ledge habitats off the coast of Georgia (northwest Atlantic Ocean. Prey taxa reduced nearest neighbor distances and retreated towards the seafloor during predatory attacks by mid-water fishes. Demersal fishes subsequently attacked and consumed prey in these ephemeral high density patches. No predation by demersal fishes was observed when prey species were at background densities. If the predator-prey interactions of demersal piscivorous fishes are commonly mediated by the predatory behavior of midwater piscivorous fishes and their prey, such indirect facilitative behaviors may be important in terms of the population processes (e.g., prey consumption and growth rates of these demersal fishes.

  6. Water level fluctuations in a tropical reservoir: the impact of sediment drying, aquatic macrophyte dieback, and oxygen availability on phosphorus mobilization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keitel, Jonas; Zak, Dominik; Hupfer, Michael

    2016-04-01

    Reservoirs in semi-arid areas are subject to water level fluctuations (WLF) that alter biogeochemical processes in the sediment. We hypothesized that wet-dry cycles may cause internal eutrophication in such systems when they affect densely vegetated shallow areas. To assess the impact of WLF on phosphorus (P) mobilization and benthic P cycling of iron-rich sediments, we tested the effects of (i) sediment drying and rewetting, (ii) the impact of organic matter availability in the form of dried Brazilian Waterweed (Egeria densa), and (iii) alternating redox conditions in the surface water. In principle, drying led to increased P release after rewetting both in plant-free and in plant-amended sediments. Highest P mobilization was recorded in plant amendments under oxygen-free conditions. After re-establishment of aerobic conditions, P concentrations in surface water decreased substantially owing to P retention by sediments. In desiccated and re-inundated sediments, P retention decreased by up to 30% compared to constantly inundated sediments. We showed that WLF may trigger biochemical interactions conducive to anaerobic P release. Thereby, E. densa showed high P release and even P uptake that was redox-controlled and superimposed sedimentary P cycling. Macrophytes play an important role in the uptake of P from the water but may be also a significant source of P in wet-dry cycles. We estimated a potential for the abrupt release of soluble reactive phosphorus (SRP) by E. densa of 0.09-0.13 g SRP per m(2) after each wet-dry cycle. Released SRP may exceed critical P limits for eutrophication, provoking usage restrictions. Our results have implications for management of reservoirs in semi-arid regions affected by WLF.

  7. Do lions Panthera leo actively select prey or do prey preferences simply reflect chance responses via evolutionary adaptations to optimal foraging?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matt W Hayward

    Full Text Available Research on coursing predators has revealed that actions throughout the predatory behavioral sequence (using encounter rate, hunting rate, and kill rate as proxy measures of decisions drive observed prey preferences. We tested whether similar actions drive the observed prey preferences of a stalking predator, the African lion Panthera leo. We conducted two 96 hour, continuous follows of lions in Addo Elephant National Park seasonally from December 2003 until November 2005 (16 follows, and compared prey encounter rate with prey abundance, hunt rate with prey encounter rate, and kill rate with prey hunt rate for the major prey species in Addo using Jacobs' electivity index. We found that lions encountered preferred prey species far more frequently than expected based on their abundance, and they hunted these species more frequently than expected based on this higher encounter rate. Lions responded variably to non-preferred and avoided prey species throughout the predatory sequence, although they hunted avoided prey far less frequently than expected based on the number of encounters of them. We conclude that actions of lions throughout the predatory behavioural sequence, but particularly early on, drive the prey preferences that have been documented for this species. Once a hunt is initiated, evolutionary adaptations to the predator-prey interactions drive hunting success.

  8. Red fox prey demands and implications to prairie duck production

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sargeant, A.B.

    1978-01-01

    Experiments were conducted during spring and summer with 33 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) to determine prey demands, feeding characteristics, and growth rates using natural foods. Pups began eating prey the 4th week after birth. Then, prey consumption averaged 1.38 and 1.90 kg/pup/week for weeks 5-8 and 9-12 of the denning season respectively, and 2.54 kg/pup/week for the postdenning period. Feeding by adults averaged 2.25 kg/adult/week. Free water was not needed by either pups or adults. About 90 percent of the prey offered to pups on simulated natural diets was consumed, remains varied with prey availability and prey type. Prey biomass required by a typical fox family was estimated at 18.5 kg/km2 for the 12-week denning season and 2.4 kg/km2/week for the postdenning period. Because of the large prey demands, ducks could represent a small part of the foxes' diet and yet be of consequence to the productivity of particular species. An example is provided for the mallard (Anas platyrhynchos).

  9. Feeding behaviour of the nauplii of the marine calanoid copepod Paracartia grani Sars: Functional response, prey size spectrum, and effects of the presence of alternative prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura K Helenius

    Full Text Available Laboratory feeding experiments were conducted to study the functional response and prey size spectrum of the young naupliar stages of the calanoid copepod Paracartia grani Sars. Experiments were conducted on a range of microalgal prey of varying sizes and motility patterns. Significant feeding was found in all prey of a size range of 4.5-19.8 μm, with Holling type III functional responses observed for most prey types. The highest clearance rates occurred when nauplii fed on the dinoflagellate Heterocapsa sp. and the diatom Thalassiosira weissflogii (respectively, 0.61 and 0.70 mL ind-1 d-1, suggesting an optimal prey:predator ratio of 0.09. Additional experiments were conducted to examine the effects of the presence of alternative prey (either Heterocapsa sp. or Gymnodinium litoralis on the functional response to the haptophyte Isochrysis galbana. In the bialgal mixtures, clearance and ingestion rates of I. galbana along the range of the functional response were significantly reduced as a result of selectivity towards the larger, alternative prey. Paradoxically, relatively large prey trigger a perception response in the nauplii, but most likely such prey cannot be completely ingested and a certain degree of sloppy feeding may occur. Our results are further evidence of the complex prey-specific feeding interactions that are likely to occur in natural assemblages with several available prey types.

  10. Modelling prey consumption and switching by UK grey seals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Smout, Sophie; Rindorf, Anna; Hammond, Philip S.

    2014-01-01

    Grey seals (Halichoerus grypus) are adaptable generalist predatorswhose diet includes commercial fish species such as cod. Consumption by the seals may reduce the size of some fish stocks or have an adverse effect on stock recovery programmes, especially because predation may trap sparse prey...... populations in a “predator pit”. To assess the likely impact of such effects, it is important to know how consumption and consequent predation mortality respond to the changing availability of prey.Wepresent a model of grey seal consumption as a function of the availability of multiple prey types [a Multi...

  11. Spatio-temporal dynamics of ocean conditions and forage taxa reveal regional structuring of seabird–prey relationships.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santora, Jarrod A; Schroeder, Isaac D; Field, John C; Wells, Brian K; Sydeman, William J

    Studies of predator–prey demographic responses and the physical drivers of such relationships are rare, yet essential for predicting future changes in the structure and dynamics of marine ecosystems. Here, we hypothesize that predator–prey relationships vary spatially in association with underlying physical ocean conditions, leading to observable changes in demographic rates, such as reproduction. To test this hypothesis, we quantified spatio-temporal variability in hydrographic conditions, krill, and forage fish to model predator (seabird) demographic responses over 18 years (1990–2007). We used principal component analysis and spatial correlation maps to assess coherence among ocean conditions, krill, and forage fish, and generalized additive models to quantify interannual variability in seabird breeding success relative to prey abundance. The first principal component of four hydrographic measurements yielded an index that partitioned “warm/weak upwelling” and “cool/strong upwelling” years. Partitioning of krill and forage fish time series among shelf and oceanic regions yielded spatially explicit indicators of prey availability. Krill abundance within the oceanic region was remarkably consistent between years, whereas krill over the shelf showed marked interannual fluctuations in relation to ocean conditions. Anchovy abundance varied on the shelf, and was greater in years of strong stratification, weak upwelling and warmer temperatures. Spatio-temporal variability of juvenile forage fish co-varied strongly with each other and with krill, but was weakly correlated with hydrographic conditions. Demographic responses between seabirds and prey availability revealed spatially variable associations indicative of the dynamic nature of “predator–habitat” relationships. Quantification of spatially explicit demographic responses, and their variability through time, demonstrate the possibility of delineating specific critical areas where the

  12. Stochastic population oscillations in spatial predator-prey models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Taeuber, Uwe C

    2011-01-01

    It is well-established that including spatial structure and stochastic noise in models for predator-prey interactions invalidates the classical deterministic Lotka-Volterra picture of neutral population cycles. In contrast, stochastic models yield long-lived, but ultimately decaying erratic population oscillations, which can be understood through a resonant amplification mechanism for density fluctuations. In Monte Carlo simulations of spatial stochastic predator-prey systems, one observes striking complex spatio-temporal structures. These spreading activity fronts induce persistent correlations between predators and prey. In the presence of local particle density restrictions (finite prey carrying capacity), there exists an extinction threshold for the predator population. The accompanying continuous non-equilibrium phase transition is governed by the directed-percolation universality class. We employ field-theoretic methods based on the Doi-Peliti representation of the master equation for stochastic particle interaction models to (i) map the ensuing action in the vicinity of the absorbing state phase transition to Reggeon field theory, and (ii) to quantitatively address fluctuation-induced renormalizations of the population oscillation frequency, damping, and diffusion coefficients in the species coexistence phase.

  13. The effect of structural complexity, prey density, and "predator-free space" on prey survivorship at created oyster reef mesocosms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Humphries, Austin T.; La Peyre, Megan K.; Decossas, Gary A.

    2011-01-01

    Interactions between predators and their prey are influenced by the habitat they occupy. Using created oyster (Crassostrea virginica) reef mesocosms, we conducted a series of laboratory experiments that created structure and manipulated complexity as well as prey density and “predator-free space” to examine the relationship between structural complexity and prey survivorship. Specifically, volume and spatial arrangement of oysters as well as prey density were manipulated, and the survivorship of prey (grass shrimp, Palaemonetes pugio) in the presence of a predator (wild red drum, Sciaenops ocellatus) was quantified. We found that the presence of structure increased prey survivorship, and that increasing complexity of this structure further increased survivorship, but only to a point. This agrees with the theory that structural complexity may influence predator-prey dynamics, but that a threshold exists with diminishing returns. These results held true even when prey density was scaled to structural complexity, or the amount of “predator-free space” was manipulated within our created reef mesocosms. The presence of structure and its complexity (oyster shell volume) were more important in facilitating prey survivorship than perceived refugia or density-dependent prey effects. A more accurate indicator of refugia might require “predator-free space” measures that also account for the available area within the structure itself (i.e., volume) and not just on the surface of a structure. Creating experiments that better mimic natural conditions and test a wider range of “predator-free space” are suggested to better understand the role of structural complexity in oyster reefs and other complex habitats.

  14. Lake Ontario benthic prey fish assessment, 2015

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weidel, Brian C.; Walsh, Maureen; Holden, Jeremy P.; Connerton, Michael J.

    2016-01-01

    Benthic prey fishes are a critical component of the Lake Ontario food web, serving as energy vectors from benthic invertebrates to native and introduced piscivores. Since the late 1970’s, Lake Ontario benthic prey fish status was primarily assessed using bottom trawl observations confined to the lake’s south shore, in waters from 8 – 150 m (26 – 492 ft). In 2015, the Benthic Prey Fish Survey was cooperatively adjusted and expanded to address resource management information needs including lake-wide benthic prey fish population dynamics. Effort increased from 55 bottom trawl sites to 135 trawl sites collected in depths from 8 - 225m (26 – 738 ft). The spatial coverage of sampling was also expanded and occurred in all major lake basins. The resulting distribution of tow depths more closely matched the available lake depth distribution. The additional effort illustrated how previous surveys were underestimating lake-wide Deepwater Sculpin, Myoxocephalus thompsonii, abundance by not sampling in areas of highest density. We also found species richness was greater in the new sampling sites relative to the historic sites with 11 new fish species caught in the new sites including juvenile Round Whitefish, Prosopium cylindraceum, and Mottled sculpin, Cottus bairdii. Species-specific assessments found Slimy Sculpin, Cottus cognatus abundance increased slightly in 2015 relative to 2014, while Deepwater Sculpin and Round Goby, Neogobius melanostomus, dramatically increased in 2015, relative to 2014. The cooperative, lake-wide Benthic Prey Fish Survey expanded our understanding of benthic fish population dynamics and habitat use in Lake Ontario. This survey’s data and interpretations influence international resource management decision making, such as informing the Deepwater Sculpin conservation status and assessing the balance between sport fish consumption and prey fish populations. Additionally a significant Lake Ontario event occurred in May 2015 when a single

  15. Toxoplasmosis in prey species and consequences for prevalence in feral cats: not all prey species are equal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Afonso, E; Thulliez, P; Pontier, D; Gilot-Fromont, E

    2007-12-01

    Toxoplasma gondii is largely transmitted to definitive felid hosts through predation. Not all prey species represent identical risks of infection for cats because of differences in prey susceptibility, exposure and/or lifespan. Previously published studies have shown that prevalence in rodent and lagomorph species is positively correlated with body mass. We tested the hypothesis that different prey species have different infection risks by comparing infection dynamics of feral cats at 4 sites in the sub-Antarctic Kerguelen archipelago which differed in prey availability. Cats were trapped from 1994 to 2004 and anti-T. gondii IgG antibodies were detected using the modified agglutination test (> or =1:40). Overall seroprevalence was 51.09%. Antibody prevalence differed between sites, depending on diet and also on sex, after taking into account the effect of age. Males were more often infected than females and the difference between the sexes tended to be more pronounced in the site where more prey species were available. A difference in predation efficiency between male and female cats may explain this result. Overall, our results suggest that the composition of prey items in cat diet influences the risk of T. gondii infection. Prey compositon should therefore be considered important in any understanding of infection dynamics of T. gondii.

  16. Individual prey choices of octopuses: Are they generalist or specialist?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer A. MATHER, Tatiana S. LEITE, Allan T. BATISTA

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Prey choice is often evaluated at the species or population level. Here, we analyzed the diet of octopuses of different populations with the aim to assess the importance of individual feeding habits as a factor affecting prey choice. Two methods were used, an assessment of the extent to which an individual octopus made choices of species representative of those population (PSi and IS and 25% cutoff values for number of choices and percentage intake of individual on their prey. In one population of Octopus cf vulgaris in Bermuda individuals were generalist by IS=0.77, but most chose many prey of the same species, and were specialists on it by >75% intake. Another population had a wider prey selection, still generalist with PSi=0.66, but two individuals specialized by choices. In Bonaire, there was a wide range of prey species chosen, and the population was specialists by IS= 0.42. Individual choices revealed seven specialists and four generalists. A population of Octopus cyanea in Hawaii all had similar choices of crustaceans, so the population was generalist by IS with 0.74. But by individual choices, three were considered a specialist. A population of Enteroctopus dofleini from Puget Sound had a wide range of preferences, in which seven were also specialists, IS=0.53. By individual choices, thirteen were also specialists. Given the octopus specialty of learning during foraging, we hypothesize that both localized prey availability and individual personality differences could influence the exploration for prey and this translates into different prey choices across individuals and populations showed in this study [Current Zoology 58 (4: 597-603, 2012].

  17. Tactile Experience Shapes Prey-Capture Behavior in Etruscan Shrews

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael eBrecht

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available A crucial role of tactile experience for the maturation of neural response properties in the somatosensory system is well established, but little is known about the role of tactile experience in the development of tactile behaviors. Here we study how tactile experience affects prey capture behavior in Etruscan shrews, Suncus etruscus. Prey capture in adult shrews is a high-speed behavior that relies on precise attacks guided by tactile Gestalt cues. We studied the role of tactile experience by three different approaches. First, we analyzed the hunting skills of young shrews right after weaning. We found that prey capture in young animals is most but not all aspects similar to that of adults. Second we performed whisker trimming for three to four weeks after birth. Such deprivation resulted in a lasting disruption of prey capture even after whisker re-growth: attacks lacked precise targeting and had a lower success rate. Third, we presented adult shrews with an entirely novel prey species, the giant cockroach. The shape of this roach is very different from the shrew’s normal (cricket prey and the thorax – the preferred point of attack in crickets – is protected a heavy cuticle. Initially shrews attacked giant roaches the same way they attack crickets and targeted the thoracic region. With progressive experience, however, shrews adopted a new attack strategy targeting legs and underside of the roaches while avoiding other body parts. Speed and efficiency of attacks improved. These data suggest that tactile experience shapes prey capture behavior.

  18. Prey capture by harbour porpoises

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Verfuss, Ursula; Miller, Lee; Pilz, Peter

    their ultrasonic clicks as biosonar for orientation and detection of prey (mostly smaller pelagic and bottom dwelling fish), and for communication.  For studying wild animals, hydrophone arrays [Villadsgaard et al. J.Exp.Biol. 210 (2007)] and acoustic (time/depth) tags [Akamatsu et al. Deep Sea Research II 54...... (2007)] have been used.  For studying captive animals, arrays and video techniques [Verfuß et al. J.Exp.Biol. 208 (2005)] as well as miniature acoustic-behavioral tags [Deruiter et al. JASA 123 (2008)] have been used.  While searching for prey, harbor porpoises use clicks at long intervals (>50 ms......) that progressively decrease when closing on a landmark.  The source levels of captive animals reduce by about half for each halving of the distance to the target.  After detecting the prey, the click interval first stabilizes at about 50 ms and then becomes progressively shorter while approaching the prey...

  19. Dynamics analysis of a predator-prey system with harvesting prey and disease in prey species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meng, Xin-You; Qin, Ni-Ni; Huo, Hai-Feng

    2018-12-01

    In this paper, a predator-prey system with harvesting prey and disease in prey species is given. In the absence of time delay, the existence and stability of all equilibria are investigated. In the presence of time delay, some sufficient conditions of the local stability of the positive equilibrium and the existence of Hopf bifurcation are obtained by analysing the corresponding characteristic equation, and the properties of Hopf bifurcation are given by using the normal form theory and centre manifold theorem. Furthermore, an optimal harvesting policy is investigated by applying the Pontryagin's Maximum Principle. Numerical simulations are performed to support our analytic results.

  20. Prey preferences of the snow leopard (Panthera uncia: regional diet specificity holds global significance for conservation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Salvador Lyngdoh

    Full Text Available The endangered snow leopard is a large felid that is distributed over 1.83 million km(2 globally. Throughout its range it relies on a limited number of prey species in some of the most inhospitable landscapes on the planet where high rates of human persecution exist for both predator and prey. We reviewed 14 published and 11 unpublished studies pertaining to snow leopard diet throughout its range. We calculated prey consumption in terms of frequency of occurrence and biomass consumed based on 1696 analysed scats from throughout the snow leopard's range. Prey biomass consumed was calculated based on the Ackerman's linear correction factor. We identified four distinct physiographic and snow leopard prey type zones, using cluster analysis that had unique prey assemblages and had key prey characteristics which supported snow leopard occurrence there. Levin's index showed the snow leopard had a specialized dietary niche breadth. The main prey of the snow leopard were Siberian ibex (Capra sibrica, blue sheep (Pseudois nayaur, Himalayan tahr (Hemitragus jemlahicus, argali (Ovis ammon and marmots (Marmota spp. The significantly preferred prey species of snow leopard weighed 55±5 kg, while the preferred prey weight range of snow leopard was 36-76 kg with a significant preference for Siberian ibex and blue sheep. Our meta-analysis identified critical dietary resources for snow leopards throughout their distribution and illustrates the importance of understanding regional variation in species ecology; particularly prey species that have global implications for conservation.

  1. What you need is what you eat? Prey selection by the bat Myotis daubentonii.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vesterinen, Eero J; Ruokolainen, Lasse; Wahlberg, Niklas; Peña, Carlos; Roslin, Tomas; Laine, Veronika N; Vasko, Ville; Sääksjärvi, Ilari E; Norrdahl, Kai; Lilley, Thomas M

    2016-04-01

    Optimal foraging theory predicts that predators are selective when faced with abundant prey, but become less picky when prey gets sparse. Insectivorous bats in temperate regions are faced with the challenge of building up fat reserves vital for hibernation during a period of decreasing arthropod abundances. According to optimal foraging theory, prehibernating bats should adopt a less selective feeding behavior--yet empirical studies have revealed many apparently generalized species to be composed of specialist individuals. Targeting the diet of the bat Myotis daubentonii, we used a combination of molecular techniques to test for seasonal changes in prey selectivity and individual-level variation in prey preferences. DNA metabarcoding was used to characterize both the prey contents of bat droppings and the insect community available as prey. To test for dietary differences among M. daubentonii individuals, we used ten microsatellite loci to assign droppings to individual bats. The comparison between consumed and available prey revealed a preference for certain prey items regardless of availability. Nonbiting midges (Chironomidae) remained the most highly consumed prey at all times, despite a significant increase in the availability of black flies (Simuliidae) towards the end of the season. The bats sampled showed no evidence of individual specialization in dietary preferences. Overall, our approach offers little support for optimal foraging theory. Thus, it shows how novel combinations of genetic markers can be used to test general theory, targeting patterns at both the level of prey communities and individual predators. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  2. Generalist predator, cyclic voles and cavity nests: testing the alternative prey hypothesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pöysä, Hannu; Jalava, Kaisa; Paasivaara, Antti

    2016-12-01

    The alternative prey hypothesis (APH) states that when the density of the main prey declines, generalist predators switch to alternative prey and vice versa, meaning that predation pressure on the alternative prey should be negatively correlated with the density of the main prey. We tested the APH in a system comprising one generalist predator (pine marten, Martes martes), cyclic main prey (microtine voles, Microtus agrestis and Myodes glareolus) and alternative prey (cavity nests of common goldeneye, Bucephala clangula); pine marten is an important predator of both voles and common goldeneye nests. Specifically, we studied whether annual predation rate of real common goldeneye nests and experimental nests is negatively associated with fluctuation in the density of voles in four study areas in southern Finland in 2000-2011. Both vole density and nest predation rate varied considerably between years in all study areas. However, we did not find support for the hypothesis that vole dynamics indirectly affects predation rate of cavity nests in the way predicted by the APH. On the contrary, the probability of predation increased with vole spring abundance for both real and experimental nests. Furthermore, a crash in vole abundance from previous autumn to spring did not increase the probability of predation of real nests, although it increased that of experimental nests. We suggest that learned predation by pine marten individuals, coupled with efficient search image for cavities, overrides possible indirect positive effects of high vole density on the alternative prey in our study system.

  3. The Dynamical Analysis of a Prey-Predator Model with a Refuge-Stage Structure Prey Population

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raid Kamel Naji

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available We proposed and analyzed a mathematical model dealing with two species of prey-predator system. It is assumed that the prey is a stage structure population consisting of two compartments known as immature prey and mature prey. It has a refuge capability as a defensive property against the predation. The existence, uniqueness, and boundedness of the solution of the proposed model are discussed. All the feasible equilibrium points are determined. The local and global stability analysis of them are investigated. The occurrence of local bifurcation (such as saddle node, transcritical, and pitchfork near each of the equilibrium points is studied. Finally, numerical simulations are given to support the analytic results.

  4. Quantum fluctuations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reynaud, S.; Giacobino, S.; Zinn-Justin, J.

    1997-01-01

    This course is dedicated to present in a pedagogical manner the recent developments in peculiar fields concerned by quantum fluctuations: quantum noise in optics, light propagation through dielectric media, sub-Poissonian light generated by lasers and masers, quantum non-demolition measurements, quantum electrodynamics applied to cavities and electrical circuits involving superconducting tunnel junctions. (A.C.)

  5. Nitrogen deposition and prey nitrogen uptake control the nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Millett, J., E-mail: j.millett@lboro.ac.uk [Centre for Hydrological and Ecosystem Science, Department of Geography, Loughborough University, Loughborough LE11 3TU (United Kingdom); Foot, G.W. [Centre for Hydrological and Ecosystem Science, Department of Geography, Loughborough University, Loughborough LE11 3TU (United Kingdom); Svensson, B.M. [Department of Plant Ecology and Evolution, Uppsala University, Norbyvägen 18 D, SE-752 36 Uppsala (Sweden)

    2015-04-15

    Nitrogen (N) deposition has important negative impacts on natural and semi-natural ecosystems, impacting on biotic interactions across trophic levels. Low-nutrient systems are particularly sensitive to changes in N inputs and are therefore more vulnerable to N deposition. Carnivorous plants are often part of these ecosystems partly because of the additional nutrients obtained from prey. We studied the impact of N deposition on the nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia growing on 16 ombrotrophic bogs across Europe. We measured tissue N, phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) concentrations and prey and root N uptake using a natural abundance stable isotope approach. Our aim was to test the impact of N deposition on D. rotundifolia prey and root N uptake, and nutrient stoichiometry. D. rotundifolia root N uptake was strongly affected by N deposition, possibly resulting in reduced N limitation. The contribution of prey N to the N contained in D. rotundifolia ranged from 20 to 60%. N deposition reduced the maximum amount of N derived from prey, but this varied below this maximum. D. rotundifolia tissue N concentrations were a product of both root N availability and prey N uptake. Increased prey N uptake was correlated with increased tissue P concentrations indicating uptake of P from prey. N deposition therefore reduced the strength of a carnivorous plant–prey interaction, resulting in a reduction in nutrient transfer between trophic levels. We suggest that N deposition has a negative impact on D. rotundifolia and that responses to N deposition might be strongly site specific. - Highlights: • We measured nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia across Europe. • We measured tissue nutrient concentrations and prey and root N uptake at 16 sites. • Tissue N concentrations were a product of root N availability and prey N uptake. • N deposition reduced the maximum amount of N derived from prey. • N deposition reduced the strength of a

  6. Nitrogen deposition and prey nitrogen uptake control the nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Millett, J.; Foot, G.W.; Svensson, B.M.

    2015-01-01

    Nitrogen (N) deposition has important negative impacts on natural and semi-natural ecosystems, impacting on biotic interactions across trophic levels. Low-nutrient systems are particularly sensitive to changes in N inputs and are therefore more vulnerable to N deposition. Carnivorous plants are often part of these ecosystems partly because of the additional nutrients obtained from prey. We studied the impact of N deposition on the nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia growing on 16 ombrotrophic bogs across Europe. We measured tissue N, phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) concentrations and prey and root N uptake using a natural abundance stable isotope approach. Our aim was to test the impact of N deposition on D. rotundifolia prey and root N uptake, and nutrient stoichiometry. D. rotundifolia root N uptake was strongly affected by N deposition, possibly resulting in reduced N limitation. The contribution of prey N to the N contained in D. rotundifolia ranged from 20 to 60%. N deposition reduced the maximum amount of N derived from prey, but this varied below this maximum. D. rotundifolia tissue N concentrations were a product of both root N availability and prey N uptake. Increased prey N uptake was correlated with increased tissue P concentrations indicating uptake of P from prey. N deposition therefore reduced the strength of a carnivorous plant–prey interaction, resulting in a reduction in nutrient transfer between trophic levels. We suggest that N deposition has a negative impact on D. rotundifolia and that responses to N deposition might be strongly site specific. - Highlights: • We measured nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia across Europe. • We measured tissue nutrient concentrations and prey and root N uptake at 16 sites. • Tissue N concentrations were a product of root N availability and prey N uptake. • N deposition reduced the maximum amount of N derived from prey. • N deposition reduced the strength of a

  7. Prey selection by Bengal Tiger Panthera tigris tigris (Mammalia: Carnivora: Felidae of Chitwan National Park, Nepal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saneer Lamichhane

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Prey selection by tiger in Chitwan National Park, Nepal was studied from 77 tiger scats that contained the remains of principal prey species.  The scats were collected from January to March 2010.  Government reports on herbivore population in Chitwan provided the base data on density of principal prey species.  In order to understand prey selectivity, the observed proportion of prey species in the scats were compared with the expected proportion derived from density estimates.  The observed scat frequency of Sambar, Hog Deer and Wild Boar was found to be greater than the estimated frequency, and the reverse was true for Chital and Muntjac.  The average weight of the principal prey species killed was 84 kg. According to our results, Chital and Sambar constituted the bulk (82.07%, and Hog Deer, Wild Boar, and Muntjac constituted 17.93% of the tiger diet.  Sambar contributed the largest bulk (43.75% of prey composition, but Chital constituted the relatively most killed (50.36% prey species.  The present study makes a contribution to an understanding of the status of prey composition in tiger scat in Chitwan during the year 2010.  The study also highlights that both large and medium sized prey are important for the conservation of tiger in Chitwan National Park. 

  8. Environmental versus demographic variability in stochastic predator–prey models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dobramysl, U; Täuber, U C

    2013-01-01

    In contrast to the neutral population cycles of the deterministic mean-field Lotka–Volterra rate equations, including spatial structure and stochastic noise in models for predator–prey interactions yields complex spatio-temporal structures associated with long-lived erratic population oscillations. Environmental variability in the form of quenched spatial randomness in the predation rates results in more localized activity patches. Our previous study showed that population fluctuations in rare favorable regions in turn cause a remarkable increase in the asymptotic densities of both predators and prey. Very intriguing features are found when variable interaction rates are affixed to individual particles rather than lattice sites. Stochastic dynamics with demographic variability in conjunction with inheritable predation efficiencies generate non-trivial time evolution for the predation rate distributions, yet with overall essentially neutral optimization. (paper)

  9. Seasonal foraging ecology of non-migratory cougars in a system with migrating prey.

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    L Mark Elbroch

    Full Text Available We tested for seasonal differences in cougar (Puma concolor foraging behaviors in the Southern Yellowstone Ecosystem, a multi-prey system in which ungulate prey migrate, and cougars do not. We recorded 411 winter prey and 239 summer prey killed by 28 female and 10 male cougars, and an additional 37 prey items by unmarked cougars. Deer composed 42.4% of summer cougar diets but only 7.2% of winter diets. Males and females, however, selected different proportions of different prey; male cougars selected more elk (Cervus elaphus and moose (Alces alces than females, while females killed greater proportions of bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis, pronghorn (Antilocapra americana, mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus and small prey than males. Kill rates did not vary by season or between males and females. In winter, cougars were more likely to kill prey on the landscape as: 1 elevation decreased, 2 distance to edge habitat decreased, 3 distance to large bodies of water decreased, and 4 steepness increased, whereas in summer, cougars were more likely to kill in areas as: 1 elevation decreased, 2 distance to edge habitat decreased, and 3 distance from large bodies of water increased. Our work highlighted that seasonal prey selection exhibited by stationary carnivores in systems with migratory prey is not only driven by changing prey vulnerability, but also by changing prey abundances. Elk and deer migrations may also be sustaining stationary cougar populations and creating apparent competition scenarios that result in higher predation rates on migratory bighorn sheep in winter and pronghorn in summer. Nevertheless, cougar predation on rare ungulates also appeared to be influenced by individual prey selection.

  10. Prey capture by harbor porpoises

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Miller, Lee; Verfuss, Ursula

    2009-01-01

    their ultrasonic clicks as biosonar for orientation and detection of prey (mostly smaller pelagic and bottom dwelling fish), and for communication. For studying wild animals, hydrophone arrays and acoustic (time/depth) tags have been used. For studying captive animals, arrays and video techniques as well...

  11. Two-prey one-predator model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Elettreby, M.F.

    2009-01-01

    In this paper we propose a new multi-team prey-predator model, in which the prey teams help each other. We study its local stability. In the absence of predator, there is no help between the prey teams. So, we study the global stability and persistence of the model without help.

  12. Prey detection in a cruising copepod

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kjellerup, Sanne; Kiørboe, Thomas

    2012-01-01

    . Yet, direct interception has been proposed to explain how rapidly cruising, blind copepods feed on non-motile phytoplankton prey. Here, we demonstrate a novel mechanism for prey detection in a cruising copepod, and describe how motile and non-motile prey are discovered by hydromechanical and tactile...

  13. Chlorophacinone residues in mammalian prey at a black-tailed prairie dog colony

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vyas, Nimish B.; Hulse, Craig S.; Rice, Clifford P.

    2012-01-01

    Black-tailed prairie dogs (BTPDs), Cynomys ludovicianus, are an important prey for raptors; therefore, the use of the rodenticide Rozol (0.005% chlorophacinone active ingredient) to control BTPDs raises concern for secondary poisonings resulting from the consumption of contaminated prey by raptors. In the present study, the authors observed Rozol exposure and adverse effects to mammalian prey on 11 of 12 search days of the study. Mammalian hepatic chlorophacinone residues ranged from 0.44 to 7.56 µg/g. Poisoned prey availability was greater than previously reported.

  14. Selenium assimilation and loss by an insect predator and its relationship to Se subcellular partitioning in two prey types

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dubois, Maitee [Institut national de la recherche scientifique - Eau, Terre et Environnement, Universite du Quebec, Quebec City, Quebec, G1K 9A9 (Canada); Hare, Landis [Institut national de la recherche scientifique - Eau, Terre et Environnement, Universite du Quebec, Quebec City, Quebec, G1K 9A9 (Canada)], E-mail: landis@ete.inrs.ca

    2009-03-15

    Subcellular selenium (Se) distributions in the oligochaete Tubifex tubifex and in the insect Chironomus riparius did not vary with Se exposure duration, which was consistent with the observations that the duration of prey Se exposure had little influence on either Se assimilation or loss by a predatory insect (the alderfly Sialis velata). However, these two prey types differed in how Se was distributed in their cells. Overall, the predator assimilated a mean of 66% of the Se present in its prey, which was similar to the mean percentage of Se in prey cells (62%) that was theoretically available for uptake (that is, Se in the protein and organelle fractions). Likewise, data for cadmium, nickel and thallium suggest that predictions of trace element transfer between prey and predator are facilitated by considering the subcellular partitioning of these contaminants in prey cells. - Selenium assimilation by a predatory aquatic insect depends on Se availability in the cells of its prey.

  15. Selenium assimilation and loss by an insect predator and its relationship to Se subcellular partitioning in two prey types

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dubois, Maitee; Hare, Landis

    2009-01-01

    Subcellular selenium (Se) distributions in the oligochaete Tubifex tubifex and in the insect Chironomus riparius did not vary with Se exposure duration, which was consistent with the observations that the duration of prey Se exposure had little influence on either Se assimilation or loss by a predatory insect (the alderfly Sialis velata). However, these two prey types differed in how Se was distributed in their cells. Overall, the predator assimilated a mean of 66% of the Se present in its prey, which was similar to the mean percentage of Se in prey cells (62%) that was theoretically available for uptake (that is, Se in the protein and organelle fractions). Likewise, data for cadmium, nickel and thallium suggest that predictions of trace element transfer between prey and predator are facilitated by considering the subcellular partitioning of these contaminants in prey cells. - Selenium assimilation by a predatory aquatic insect depends on Se availability in the cells of its prey

  16. When attempts at robbing prey turn fatal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dejean, Alain; Corbara, Bruno; Azémar, Frédéric; Carpenter, James M.

    2012-07-01

    Because group-hunting arboreal ants spread-eagle insect prey for a long time before retrieving them, these prey can be coveted by predatory flying insects. Yet, attempting to rob these prey is risky if the ant species is also an effective predator. Here, we show that trying to rob prey from Azteca andreae workers is a fatal error as 268 out of 276 potential cleptobionts (97.1 %) were captured in turn. The ant workers hunt in a group and use the "Velcro®" principle to cling firmly to the leaves of their host tree, permitting them to capture very large prey. Exceptions were one social wasp, plus some Trigona spp. workers and flies that landed directly on the prey and were able to take off immediately when attacked. We conclude that in this situation, previously captured prey attract potential cleptobionts that are captured in turn in most of the cases.

  17. Competing conservation objectives for predators and prey: estimating killer whale prey requirements for Chinook salmon.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rob Williams

    Full Text Available Ecosystem-based management (EBM of marine resources attempts to conserve interacting species. In contrast to single-species fisheries management, EBM aims to identify and resolve conflicting objectives for different species. Such a conflict may be emerging in the northeastern Pacific for southern resident killer whales (Orcinus orca and their primary prey, Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha. Both species have at-risk conservation status and transboundary (Canada-US ranges. We modeled individual killer whale prey requirements from feeding and growth records of captive killer whales and morphometric data from historic live-capture fishery and whaling records worldwide. The models, combined with caloric value of salmon, and demographic and diet data for wild killer whales, allow us to predict salmon quantities needed to maintain and recover this killer whale population, which numbered 87 individuals in 2009. Our analyses provide new information on cost of lactation and new parameter estimates for other killer whale populations globally. Prey requirements of southern resident killer whales are difficult to reconcile with fisheries and conservation objectives for Chinook salmon, because the number of fish required is large relative to annual returns and fishery catches. For instance, a U.S. recovery goal (2.3% annual population growth of killer whales over 28 years implies a 75% increase in energetic requirements. Reducing salmon fisheries may serve as a temporary mitigation measure to allow time for management actions to improve salmon productivity to take effect. As ecosystem-based fishery management becomes more prevalent, trade-offs between conservation objectives for predators and prey will become increasingly necessary. Our approach offers scenarios to compare relative influence of various sources of uncertainty on the resulting consumption estimates to prioritise future research efforts, and a general approach for assessing the extent of

  18. Coexistence in a One-Predator, Two-Prey System with Indirect Effects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renato Colucci

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available We study the dynamics of a one-predator, two-prey system in which the predator has an indirect effect on the preys. We show that, in presence of the indirect effect term, the system admits coexistence of the three populations while, if we disregard it, at least one of the populations goes to extinction.

  19. Correlation between the seasonal distribution of harbour porpoises and their prey in the Sound, Baltic Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sveegaard, Signe; Andreasen, Heidi; Mouritsen, Kim N.

    2012-01-01

    herring and Atlantic cod were equally important during the low-density season. Prey availability and predictability are suggested as the main drivers for harbour porpoise distribution, and this could be caused by the formation of frontal zones in spring in the northern part of the Sound, leading to prey...

  20. Extinction in a generalized Lotka-Volterra predator-prey model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Azmy S. Ackleh

    2000-01-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we discuss the asymptotic behavior of a predator-prey model with distributed growth and mortality rates. We exhibit simple criteria on the parameters which guarantee that all subpopulations but one predator-prey pair are driven to extinction as t→∞. Finally, we present numerical simulations to illustrate the theoretical results.

  1. Spin fluctuations and the

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V.M. Loktev

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available We analyze the spectral properties of a phenomenological model for a weakly doped two-dimensional antiferromagnet, in which the carriers move within one of the two sublattices where they were introduced. Such a constraint results in the free carrier spectra with the maxima at k=(± π/2 , ± π/2 observed in some cuprates. We consider the spectral properties of the model by taking into account fluctuations of the spins in the antiferromagnetic background. We show that such fluctuations lead to a non-pole-like structure of the single-hole Green's function and these fluctuations can be responsible for some anomalous "strange metal" properties of underdoped cuprates in the nonsuperconducting regime.

  2. Influence of poisoned prey on foraging behavior of ferruginous hawks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vyas, Nimish B.; Kuncir, Frank; Clinton, Criss C.

    2017-01-01

    We recorded 19 visits by ferruginous hawks (Buteo regalis) over 6 d at two black–tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus) subcolonies poisoned with the rodenticide Rozol® Prairie Dog Bait (0.005% chlorophacinone active ingredient) and at an adjacent untreated subcolony. Before Rozol® application ferruginous hawks foraged in the untreated and treated subcolonies but after Rozol® application predation by ferruginous hawks was only observed in the treated subcolonies. We suggest that ferruginous hawks' preference for hunting in the treated subcolonies after Rozol® application was influenced by the availability of easy-to-capture prey, presumably due to Rozol® poisoning. The energetically beneficial behavior of favoring substandard prey may increase raptor encounters with rodenticide exposed animals if prey vulnerability has resulted from poisoning.

  3. The nutritional nexus: linking niche, habitat variability and prey composition in a generalist marine predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Machovsky-Capuska, Gabriel E; Miller, Mark G R; Silva, Fabiola R O; Amiot, Christophe; Stockin, Karen A; Senior, Alistair M; Schuckard, Rob; Melville, David; Raubenheimer, David

    2018-06-05

    1.Our understanding of the niche concept will remain limited while the quantity and range of different food types eaten remains a dominant proxy for niche breadth, as this does not account for the broad ecological context that governs diet. Linking nutrition, physiology and behaviour are critical to predict the extent to which a species adjusts its nutritional niche breadth at the levels of prey ("prey composition niche", defined as the range of prey compositions eaten), and diet ("realized nutritional niche" is the range of diets composed through feeding on the prey). 2.Here we studied adult-chick rearing Australasian gannets (Morus serrator) to propose an integrative approach using sea surface temperature anomalies (SSTa), geographic location and bathymetry over different years, to explore their relationship with the nutritional composition of prey and diets (i.e., prey composition and nutritional niche breadth), habitat use and foraging behavior. 3.We found that gannets feed on prey that varied widely in their nutritional composition (have a broad prey composition niche), and composed diets from these prey that likewise varied in composition (have a broad realized nutritional niche), suggesting generalism at two levels of macronutrient selection. 4.Across seasons, we established "nutritional landscapes" (hereafter nutriscapes), linking the nutritional content of prey (wet mass protein to-lipid ratio -P:L-) to the most likely geographic area of capture and bathymetry. Nutriscapes varied in their P:L from 6.06 to 15.28, over time, space and bathymetry (0 to 150 m). 5.During warm water events (strong positive SSTa), gannets expanded their foraging habitat, increased their foraging trip duration and consumed prey and diets with low macronutrient content (wet mass proportions of P and L). They were also constrained to the smallest prey composition and realized nutritional niche breadths. 6.Our findings are consistent with previous suggestions that dietary generalism

  4. Trait-mediated diversification in nematode predator–prey systems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mulder, C.; Helder, J.; Vervoort, M.T.W.; Vonk, J.A.

    2011-01-01

    Nematodes are presumably the most numerous Metazoans in terrestrial habitats. They are represented at all trophic levels and are known to respond to nutrient limitation, prey availability, and microbial resources. Predatory nematodes reside at the highest trophic level, and as such their feeding

  5. Effects of dams on downstream molluscan predator-prey interactions in the Colorado River estuary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Jansen A; Handley, John C; Dietl, Gregory P

    2018-05-30

    River systems worldwide have been modified for human use and the downstream ecological consequences are often poorly understood. In the Colorado River estuary, where upstream water diversions have limited freshwater input during the last century, mollusc remains from the last several hundred years suggest widespread ecological change. The once abundant clam Mulinia modesta has undergone population declines of approximately 94% and populations of predators relying on this species as a food source have probably declined, switched to alternative prey species or both. We distinguish between the first two hypotheses using a null model of predation preference to test whether M. modesta was preyed upon selectively by the naticid snail, Neverita reclusiana , along the estuary's past salinity gradient. To evaluate the third hypothesis, we estimate available prey biomass today and in the past, assuming prey were a limiting resource. Data on the frequency of drill holes-identifiable traces of naticid predation on prey shells-showed several species, including M. modesta , were preferred prey. Neverita reclusiana was probably able to switch prey. Available prey biomass also declined, suggesting the N. reclusiana population probably also declined. These results indicate a substantial change to the structure of the benthic food web. Given the global scale of water management, such changes have probably also occurred in many of the world's estuaries. © 2018 The Author(s).

  6. Fluctuation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Clarke, J.

    1980-01-01

    This paper briefly reviews sources of noise in Josephson junctions, and the limits they impose on the sensitivity of dc and rf SQUIDS. The results are strictly valid only for a resistively shunted junction (RSJ) with zero capacitance, but should be applicable to point contact junctions and microbridges in so far as these devices can be approximated by the RSJ model. Fluctuations arising from Nyquist noise in the resistive shunt of a single junction are discussed in the limit eI/sub o/R/k/sub B/T << 1 in which a classical treatment is appropriate, and then extend the treatment to the limit eI/sub o/R/k/sub B/T greater than or equal to 1 in which quantum effects become important. The Nyquist limit theory is used to calculate the noise in a dc SQUID, and the results are compared with a number of practical devices. The quantum limit is briefly considered. Results for the predicted sensitivity of rf SQUIDS are presented, and also compared with a number of practical devices. Finally, the importance of l/f noise (f is the frequency) in limiting the low frequency performance of SQUIDS is discussed

  7. Benthic prey fish assessment, Lake Ontario 2013

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weidel, Brian C.; Walsh, Maureen; Connerton, Michael J.

    2014-01-01

    The 2013 benthic fish assessment was delayed and shortened as a result of the U.S. Government shutdown, however the assessment collected 51 of the 62 planned bottom trawls. Over the past 34 years, Slimy Sculpin abundance in Lake Ontario has fluctuated, but ultimately decreased by two orders of magnitude, with a substantial decline occurring in the past 10 years. The 2013 Slimy Sculpin mean bottom trawl catch density (0.001 ind.·m-2, s.d.= 0.0017, n = 52) and mean biomass density (0.015 g·m-2 , s.d.= 0.038, n = 52) were the lowest recorded in the 27 years of sampling using the original bottom trawl design. From 2011-2013, the Slimy Sculpin density and biomass density has decreased by approximately 50% each year. Spring bottom trawl catches illustrate Slimy Sculpin and Round Goby Neogobius melanostoma winter habitat overlaps for as much as 7 months out of a year, providing opportunities for competition and predation. Invasive species, salmonid piscivory, and declines in native benthic invertebrates are likely all important drivers of Slimy Sculpin population dynamics in Lake Ontario. Deepwater Sculpin Myoxocephalus thompsonii, considered rare or absent from Lake Ontario for 30 years, have generally increased over the past eight years. For the first time since they were caught in this assessment, Deepwater Sculpin density and biomass density estimates declined from the previous year. The 2013 abundance and density estimates for trawls covering the standard depths from 60m to 150m was 0.0001 fish per square meter and 0.0028 grams per square meter. In 2013, very few small (recruitment. Nonnative Round Gobies were first detected in the USGS/NYSDEC Lake Ontario spring Alewife assessment in 2002. Since that assessment, observations indicate their population has expanded and they are now found along the entire south shore of Lake Ontario, with the highest densities in U.S. waters just east of the Niagara River confluence. In the 2013 spring-based assessment, both the

  8. A Sensory-Driven Trade-Off between Coordinated Motion in Social Prey and a Predator's Visual Confusion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bertrand H Lemasson

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Social animals are capable of enhancing their awareness by paying attention to their neighbors, and prey found in groups can also confuse their predators. Both sides of these sensory benefits have long been appreciated, yet less is known of how the perception of events from the perspectives of both prey and predator can interact to influence their encounters. Here we examined how a visual sensory mechanism impacts the collective motion of prey and, subsequently, how their resulting movements influenced predator confusion and capture ability. We presented virtual prey to human players in a targeting game and measured the speed and accuracy with which participants caught designated prey. As prey paid more attention to neighbor movements their collective coordination increased, yet increases in prey coordination were positively associated with increases in the speed and accuracy of attacks. However, while attack speed was unaffected by the initial state of the prey, accuracy dropped significantly if the prey were already organized at the start of the attack, rather than in the process of self-organizing. By repeating attack scenarios and masking the targeted prey's neighbors we were able to visually isolate them and conclusively demonstrate how visual confusion impacted capture ability. Delays in capture caused by decreased coordination amongst the prey depended upon the collection motion of neighboring prey, while it was primarily the motion of the targets themselves that determined capture accuracy. Interestingly, while a complete loss of coordination in the prey (e.g., a flash expansion caused the greatest delay in capture, such behavior had little effect on capture accuracy. Lastly, while increases in collective coordination in prey enhanced personal risk, traveling in coordinated groups was still better than appearing alone. These findings demonstrate a trade-off between the sensory mechanisms that can enhance the collective properties that

  9. Let's go beyond taxonomy in diet description: testing a trait-based approach to prey-predator relationships.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spitz, Jérôme; Ridoux, Vincent; Brind'Amour, Anik

    2014-09-01

    Understanding 'Why a prey is a prey for a given predator?' can be facilitated through trait-based approaches that identify linkages between prey and predator morphological and ecological characteristics and highlight key functions involved in prey selection. Enhanced understanding of the functional relationships between predators and their prey is now essential to go beyond the traditional taxonomic framework of dietary studies and to improve our knowledge of ecosystem functioning for wildlife conservation and management. We test the relevance of a three-matrix approach in foraging ecology among a marine mammal community in the northeast Atlantic to identify the key functional traits shaping prey selection processes regardless of the taxonomy of both the predators and prey. Our study reveals that prey found in the diet of marine mammals possess functional traits which are directly and significantly linked to predator characteristics, allowing the establishment of a functional typology of marine mammal-prey relationships. We found prey selection of marine mammals was primarily shaped by physiological and morphological traits of both predators and prey, confirming that energetic costs of foraging strategies and muscular performance are major drivers of prey selection in marine mammals. We demonstrate that trait-based approaches can provide a new definition of the resource needs of predators. This framework can be used to anticipate bottom-up effects on marine predator population dynamics and to identify predators which are sensitive to the loss of key prey functional traits when prey availability is reduced. © 2014 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2014 British Ecological Society.

  10. The modeling of predator-prey interactions

    OpenAIRE

    Muhammad Shakil; H. A. Wahab; Muhammad Naeem, et al.

    2015-01-01

    In this paper, we aim to study the interactions between the territorial animals like foxes and the rabbits. The territories for the foxes are considered to be the simple cells. The interactions between predator and its prey are represented by the chemical reactions which obey the mass action law. In this sense, we apply the mass action law for predator prey models and the quasi chemical approach is applied for the interactions between the predator and its prey to develop the modeled equations...

  11. A Generalist Protist Predator Enables Coexistence in Multitrophic Predator-Prey Systems Containing a Phage and the Bacterial Predator Bdellovibrio

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julia Johnke

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Complex ecosystems harbor multiple predators and prey species whose direct and indirect interactions are under study. In particular, the combined effects of predator diversity and resource preference on prey removal are not known. To understand the effect of interspecies interactions, combinations of micro-predators—i.e., protists (generalists, predatory bacteria (semi-specialists, and phages (specialists—and bacterial prey were tracked over a 72-h period in miniature membrane bioreactors. While specialist predators alone drove their preferred prey to extinction, the inclusion of a generalist resulted in uniform losses among prey species. Most importantly, presence of a generalist predator enabled coexistence of all predators and prey. As the generalist predator also negatively affected the other predators, we suggest that resource partitioning between predators and the constant availability of resources for bacterial growth due to protist predation stabilizes the system and keeps its diversity high. The appearance of resistant prey strains and subsequent evolution of specialist predators unable to infect the ancestral prey implies that multitrophic communities are able to persist and stabilize themselves. Interestingly, the appearance of BALOs and phages unable to infect their prey was only observed for the BALO or phage in the absence of additional predators or prey species indicating that competition between predators might influence coevolutionary dynamics.

  12. Feeding opportunities of larval and juvenile cod (Gadus morhua) in a Greenlandic fjord: temporal and spatial linkages between cod and their preferred prey

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Swalethorp, Rasmus; Kjellerup, Sanne; Malanski, Evandro

    2014-01-01

    preferences of the early-life stages of Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) to quantify the availability of prey during a spring-summer season in a West Greenlandic fjord. We hypothesized that abundances of larval and juvenile cod at size were synchronized to optimal availability of preferred prey in space and time....... These findings stress the importance of focusing on abundance of preferred prey when assessing the actual prey availability to young fish. We found a spatio-temporal overlap between cod and their preferred prey, and observations suggest that advection of both zooplankton and cod contributed to this overlap...

  13. Foraging behaviour and prey size spectra of larval herring Clupea harengus

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Munk, Peter

    1992-01-01

    size groups of larval herring Clupea harengus L. were studied when preying on 6 size groups of copepods. Larval swimming and attack behaviour changed with prey size and were related to the ratio between prey length and larval length. The effective search rate showed a maximum when prey length was about......, that the available biomass of food as a proportion of the predator biomass will not increase. In order to assess the uniformity of relative prey size spectra of herring larvae and their background in larval foraging behaviour, a set of experimental and field investigations has been carried out. In the experiments, 4...... in the biomass spectra of the environment is important to larval growth and survival....

  14. Influence of vegetation on the nocturnal foraging behaviors and vertebrate prey capture by endangered Burrowing Owls

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alan Marsh

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Restrictions in technology have limited past habitat selection studies for many species to the home-range level, as a finer-scale understanding was often not possible. Consequently, these studies may not identify the true mechanism driving habitat selection patterns, which may influence how such results are applied in conservation. We used GPS dataloggers with digital video recorders to identify foraging modes and locations in which endangered Burrowing Owls (Athene cunicularia captured prey. We measured the coarse and fine-scale characteristics of vegetation at locations in which owls searched for, versus where they caught, vertebrate prey. Most prey items were caught using hover-hunting. Burrowing Owls searched for, and caught, vertebrate prey in all cover types, but were more likely to kill prey in areas with sparse and less dense vegetative cover. Management strategies designed to increase Burrowing Owl foraging success in the Canadian prairies should try to ensure a mosaic of vegetation heights across cover types.

  15. Prey selection and feeding habits of the large carnivores in the Southern Kalahari

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. G. L Mills

    1984-12-01

    Full Text Available Prey selection and feeding habits of lions Panthera leo, spotted hyaenas Crocuta crocuta, cheetahs Acinonyx jubatus and leopards Panthera pardus are investigated. Lions kill mainly adult gemsbok Oryx gazella and blue wildebeest Connochaetes taurinus, tending to select older animals of both species and males in the case of gemsbok. Spotted hyaenas also prey mainly on gemsbok and wildebeest, but select for juveniles, particularly from gemsbok. Cheetahs prey heavily on springbok Antidorcas marsupialis lambs and then on adult males and older individuals. Leopards also prey relatively heavily on springbok, but appear to have a wider diet than cheetahs do. It is concluded that predators generally have a small impact on their prey populations in the southern Kalahari, although in the case of springbok they do appear to influence the structure of the population.

  16. Prey selection by the Barn Owl Tyto alba (Scopoli, 1769 in captivity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. Vanitha

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available We investigated prey selection of the Barn Owl Tyto alba under captive conditions where birds were allowed to choose among individuals of varying size from four field rodent species: Bandicota bengalensis, Millardia meltada, Tatera indica and Mus booduga. Owls showed little species preference and a tendency to favour the medium weight class in all prey species except M. booduga. Preference for body parts consumed varied according to prey size, ranging from the head alone in the large weight class to the entire body in the small weight class. Biochemical measurements showed that protein, carbohydrate and lipid levels were higher respectively in the brain, liver and muscles of all three species and weight classes studied. The preference for medium weight prey despite a lower nutrient content compared to large weight prey is attributed to a greater ease of capture.

  17. "Prey Play": Learning about Predators and Prey through an Interactive, Role-Play Game

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deaton, Cynthia C. M.; Dodd, Kristen; Drennon, Katherine; Nagle, Jack

    2012-01-01

    "Prey Play" is an interactive role-play activity that provides fifth-grade students with opportunities to examine predator-prey interactions. This four-part, role-play activity allows students to take on the role of a predator and prey as they reflect on the behaviors animals exhibit as they collect food and interact with one another, as well as…

  18. Effects of an infectious fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, on amphibian predator-prey interactions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barbara A Han

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available The effects of parasites and pathogens on host behaviors may be particularly important in predator-prey contexts, since few animal behaviors are more crucial for ensuring immediate survival than the avoidance of lethal predators in nature. We examined the effects of an emerging fungal pathogen of amphibians, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, on anti-predator behaviors of tadpoles of four frog species. We also investigated whether amphibian predators consumed infected prey, and whether B. dendrobatidis caused differences in predation rates among prey in laboratory feeding trials. We found differences in anti-predator behaviors among larvae of four amphibian species, and show that infected tadpoles of one species (Anaxyrus boreas were more active and sought refuge more frequently when exposed to predator chemical cues. Salamander predators consumed infected and uninfected tadpoles of three other prey species at similar rates in feeding trials, and predation risk among prey was unaffected by B. dendrobatidis. Collectively, our results show that even sub-lethal exposure to B. dendrobatidis can alter fundamental anti-predator behaviors in some amphibian prey species, and suggest the unexplored possibility that indiscriminate predation between infected and uninfected prey (i.e., non-selective predation could increase the prevalence of this widely distributed pathogen in amphibian populations. Because one of the most prominent types of predators in many amphibian systems is salamanders, and because salamanders are susceptible to B. dendrobatidis, our work suggests the importance of considering host susceptibility and behavioral changes that could arise from infection in both predators and prey.

  19. Encounter success of free-ranging marine predator movements across a dynamic prey landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sims, David W; Witt, Matthew J; Richardson, Anthony J; Southall, Emily J; Metcalfe, Julian D

    2006-05-22

    Movements of wide-ranging top predators can now be studied effectively using satellite and archival telemetry. However, the motivations underlying movements remain difficult to determine because trajectories are seldom related to key biological gradients, such as changing prey distributions. Here, we use a dynamic prey landscape of zooplankton biomass in the north-east Atlantic Ocean to examine active habitat selection in the plankton-feeding basking shark Cetorhinus maximus. The relative success of shark searches across this landscape was examined by comparing prey biomass encountered by sharks with encounters by random-walk simulations of 'model' sharks. Movements of transmitter-tagged sharks monitored for 964 days (16754 km estimated minimum distance) were concentrated on the European continental shelf in areas characterized by high seasonal productivity and complex prey distributions. We show movements by adult and sub-adult sharks yielded consistently higher prey encounter rates than 90% of random-walk simulations. Behavioural patterns were consistent with basking sharks using search tactics structured across multiple scales to exploit the richest prey areas available in preferred habitats. Simple behavioural rules based on learned responses to previously encountered prey distributions may explain the high performances. This study highlights how dynamic prey landscapes enable active habitat selection in large predators to be investigated from a trophic perspective, an approach that may inform conservation by identifying critical habitat of vulnerable species.

  20. Demographic consequences of predators on prey: trait and density mediated effects on mosquito larvae in containers.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barry W Alto

    Full Text Available Predators may affect prey population growth and community diversity through density mediated lethal and trait mediated non-lethal effects that influence phenotypic traits of prey. We tested experimentally the roles of thinning the density of prey (lethality in the absence of predator cues and density and trait mediated effects (lethality + intimidation of predatory midge Corethrella appendiculata on competing native and invasive mosquito prey. Predator-mediated reductions in prey and density reductions in the absence of C. appendiculata resulted in lower percent survivorship to adulthood and estimates of the finite rate of increase (λ' for invasive mosquito Aedes albopictus relative to that of controls. In most instances, thinning the density of prey in the absence, but not in the presence, of C. appendiculata cues resulted in lower survivorship to adulthood and λ' for native mosquito Aedes triseriatus relative to that of controls. Together, these results suggested trait mediated effects of C. appendiculata specific to each species of mosquito prey. Release from intraspecific competition attributable to density reductions in the absence, but not in the presence, of C. appendiculata enhanced growth and lengthened adult lifespan relative to that of controls for A. albopictus but not A. triseriatus. These results show the importance of predator-mediated density and trait mediated effects on phenotypic traits and populations of invasive and native mosquitoes. Species-specific differences in the phenotypic responses of prey may be due, in part, to longer evolutionary history of C. appendiculata with A. triseriatus than A. albopictus.

  1. How much is too much? Assessment of prey consumption by Magellanic penguins in Patagonian colonies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan E Sala

    Full Text Available Penguins are major consumers in the southern oceans although quantification of this has been problematic. One suggestion proposes the use of points of inflection in diving profiles ('wiggles' for this, a method that has been validated for the estimation of prey consumption by Magellanic penguins (Spheniscus magellanicus by Simeone and Wilson (2003. Following them, we used wiggles from 31 depth logger-equipped Magellanic penguins foraging from four Patagonian colonies; Punta Norte (PN, Bahía Bustamente (BB, Puerto Deseado (PD and Puerto San Julián (PSJ, all located in Argentina between 42-49° S, to estimate the prey captured and calculate the catch per unit time (CPUT for birds foraging during the early chick-rearing period. Numbers of prey caught and CPUT were significantly different between colonies. Birds from PD caught the highest number of prey per foraging trip, with CPUT values of 68±19 prey per hour underwater (almost two times greater than for the three remaining colonies. We modeled consumption from these data and calculate that the world Magellanic penguin population consumes about 2 million tons of prey per year. Possible errors in this calculation are discussed. Despite this, the analysis of wiggles seems a powerful and simple tool to begin to quantify prey consumption by Magellanic penguins, allowing comparison between different breeding sites. The total number of wiggles and/or CPUT do not reflect, by themselves, the availability of food for each colony, as the number of prey consumed by foraging trip is strongly associated with the energy content and wet mass of each colony-specific 'prey type'. Individuals consuming more profitable prey could be optimizing the time spent underwater, thereby optimizing the energy expenditure associated with the dives.

  2. A modified Leslie-Gower predator-prey interaction model and parameter identifiability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tripathi, Jai Prakash; Meghwani, Suraj S.; Thakur, Manoj; Abbas, Syed

    2018-01-01

    In this work, bifurcation and a systematic approach for estimation of identifiable parameters of a modified Leslie-Gower predator-prey system with Crowley-Martin functional response and prey refuge is discussed. Global asymptotic stability is discussed by applying fluctuation lemma. The system undergoes into Hopf bifurcation with respect to parameters intrinsic growth rate of predators (s) and prey reserve (m). The stability of Hopf bifurcation is also discussed by calculating Lyapunov number. The sensitivity analysis of the considered model system with respect to all variables is performed which also supports our theoretical study. To estimate the unknown parameter from the data, an optimization procedure (pseudo-random search algorithm) is adopted. System responses and phase plots for estimated parameters are also compared with true noise free data. It is found that the system dynamics with true set of parametric values is similar to the estimated parametric values. Numerical simulations are presented to substantiate the analytical findings.

  3. Stochastic analysis of a pulse-type prey-predator model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Y.; Zhu, W. Q.

    2008-04-01

    A stochastic Lotka-Volterra model, a so-called pulse-type model, for the interaction between two species and their random natural environment is investigated. The effect of a random environment is modeled as random pulse trains in the birth rate of the prey and the death rate of the predator. The generalized cell mapping method is applied to calculate the probability distributions of the species populations at a state of statistical quasistationarity. The time evolution of the population densities is studied, and the probability of the near extinction time, from an initial state to a critical state, is obtained. The effects on the ecosystem behaviors of the prey self-competition term and of the pulse mean arrival rate are also discussed. Our results indicate that the proposed pulse-type model shows obviously distinguishable characteristics from a Gaussian-type model, and may confer a significant advantage for modeling the prey-predator system under discrete environmental fluctuations.

  4. Influence of local carrying capacity restrictions on stochastic predator-prey models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Washenberger, Mark J; Mobilia, Mauro; Taeuber, Uwe C

    2007-01-01

    We study a stochastic lattice predator-prey system by means of Monte Carlo simulations that do not impose any restrictions on the number of particles per site, and discuss the similarities and differences of our results with those obtained for site-restricted model variants. In accord with the classic Lotka-Volterra mean-field description, both species always coexist in two dimensions. Yet competing activity fronts generate complex, correlated spatio-temporal structures. As a consequence, finite systems display transient erratic population oscillations with characteristic frequencies that are renormalized by fluctuations. For large reaction rates, when the processes are rendered more local, these oscillations are suppressed. In contrast with the site-restricted predator-prey model, we also observe species coexistence in one dimension. In addition, we report results on the steady-state prey age distribution

  5. Fluctuations in quantum devices

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H.Haken

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Logical gates can be formalized by Boolean algebra whose elementary operations can be realized by devices that employ the interactions of macroscopic numbers of elementary excitations such as electrons, holes, photons etc. With increasing miniaturization to the nano scale and below, quantum fluctuations become important and can no longer be ignored. Based on Heisenberg equations of motion for the creation and annihilation operators of elementary excitations, I determine the noise sources of composite quantum systems.

  6. Relating marten scat contents to prey consumed

    Science.gov (United States)

    William J. Zielinski

    1986-01-01

    A European ferret, Mustela putorius furo, was fed typical marten food items to discover the relationship between prey weight and number of scats produced per unit weight of prey. A correction factor was derived that was used in the analysis of pine marten, Martes americana, scats to produce a method capable of comparing foods on a...

  7. Optimal intermittent search strategies: smelling the prey

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Revelli, J A; Wio, H S; Rojo, F; Budde, C E

    2010-01-01

    We study the kinetics of the search of a single fixed target by a searcher/walker that performs an intermittent random walk, characterized by different states of motion. In addition, we assume that the walker has the ability to detect the scent left by the prey/target in its surroundings. Our results, in agreement with intuition, indicate that the prey's survival probability could be strongly reduced (increased) if the predator is attracted (or repelled) by the trace left by the prey. We have also found that, for a positive trace (the predator is guided towards the prey), increasing the inhomogeneity's size reduces the prey's survival probability, while the optimal value of α (the parameter that regulates intermittency) ceases to exist. The agreement between theory and numerical simulations is excellent.

  8. Optimal intermittent search strategies: smelling the prey

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Revelli, J A; Wio, H S [Instituto de Fisica de Cantabria, Universidad de Cantabria and CSIC, E-39005 Santander (Spain); Rojo, F; Budde, C E [Fa.M.A.F., Universidad Nacional de Cordoba, Ciudad Universitaria, X5000HUA Cordoba (Argentina)

    2010-05-14

    We study the kinetics of the search of a single fixed target by a searcher/walker that performs an intermittent random walk, characterized by different states of motion. In addition, we assume that the walker has the ability to detect the scent left by the prey/target in its surroundings. Our results, in agreement with intuition, indicate that the prey's survival probability could be strongly reduced (increased) if the predator is attracted (or repelled) by the trace left by the prey. We have also found that, for a positive trace (the predator is guided towards the prey), increasing the inhomogeneity's size reduces the prey's survival probability, while the optimal value of {alpha} (the parameter that regulates intermittency) ceases to exist. The agreement between theory and numerical simulations is excellent.

  9. Predators are attracted to the olfactory signals of prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nelika K Hughes

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Predator attraction to prey social signals can force prey to trade-off the social imperatives to communicate against the profound effect of predation on their future fitness. These tradeoffs underlie theories on the design and evolution of conspecific signalling systems and have received much attention in visual and acoustic signalling modes. Yet while most territorial mammals communicate using olfactory signals and olfactory hunting is widespread in predators, evidence for the attraction of predators to prey olfactory signals under field conditions is lacking.To redress this fundamental issue, we examined the attraction of free-roaming predators to discrete patches of scents collected from groups of two and six adult, male house mice, Mus domesticus, which primarily communicate through olfaction. Olfactorily-hunting predators were rapidly attracted to mouse scent signals, visiting mouse scented locations sooner, and in greater number, than control locations. There were no effects of signal concentration on predator attraction to their prey's signals.This implies that communication will be costly if conspecific receivers and eavesdropping predators are simultaneously attracted to a signal. Significantly, our results also suggest that receivers may be at greater risk of predation when communicating than signallers, as receivers must visit risky patches of scent to perform their half of the communication equation, while signallers need not.

  10. Fluctuations in quantum chaos

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Casati, G.; Chirikov, B.V.

    1996-01-01

    Various fluctuations in quantum systems with discrete spectrum are discussed, including recent unpublished results. Open questions and unexplained peculiarities of quantum fluctuations are formulated [ru

  11. Model evaluation of the function of prey in non-crop habitats for biological control by ladybeetles in agricultural landscapes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bianchi, F.J.J.A.; Werf, van der W.

    2004-01-01

    The availability of alternative prey is considered to be an important factor for the conservation of predators in agro-ecosystems. However, only a limited number of studies have investigated the effect of prey availability in non-crop habitats on predator impact. We studied the potential of the

  12. Kelp Forests versus Urchin Barrens: Alternate Stable States and Their Effect on Sea Otter Prey Quality in the Aleutian Islands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nathan L. Stewart

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Macroalgal and urchin barren communities are alternately stable and persist in the Aleutians due to sea otter presence and absence. In the early 1990s a rapid otter population decline released urchins from predation and caused a shift to the urchin-dominated state. Despite increases in urchin abundance, otter numbers continued to decline. Although debated, prey quality changes have been implicated in current otter population status. This study examined otter prey abundance, size, biomass, and potential energy density in remnant kelp forest and urchin-dominated communities to determine if alternate stable states affect prey quality. Findings suggest that although urchin barrens provide more abundant urchin prey, individual urchins are smaller and provide lower biomass and potential energy density compared to kelp forests. Shifts to urchin barrens do affect prey quality but changes are likely compensated by increased prey densities and are insufficient in explaining current otter population status in the Aleutians.

  13. Prey change behaviour with predation threat, but demographic effects vary with prey density: experiments with grasshoppers and birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belovsky, Gary E; Laws, Angela Nardoni; Slade, Jennifer B

    2011-04-01

    Increasingly, ecologists emphasize that prey frequently change behaviour in the presence of predators and these behavioural changes can reduce prey survival and reproduction as much or more than predation itself. However, the effects of behavioural changes on survival and reproduction may vary with prey density due to intraspecific competition. In field experiments, we varied grasshopper density and threat of avian predation and measured grasshopper behaviour, survival and reproduction. Grasshopper behaviour changed with the threat of predation and these behavioural changes were invariant with grasshopper density. Behavioural changes with the threat of predation decreased per capita reproduction over all grasshopper densities; whereas the behavioural changes increased survival at low grasshopper densities and then decreased survival at high densities. At low grasshopper densities, the total reproductive output of the grasshopper population remained unchanged with predation threat, but declined at higher densities. The effects of behavioural changes with predation threat varied with grasshopper density because of a trade-off between survival and reproduction as intraspecific competition increased with density. Therefore, resource availability may need to be considered when assessing how prey behavioural changes with predation threat affect population and food web dynamics. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/CNRS.

  14. Stochastic Predator-Prey Dynamics of Transposons in the Human Genome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xue, Chi; Goldenfeld, Nigel

    2016-11-01

    Transposable elements, or transposons, are DNA sequences that can jump from site to site in the genome during the life cycle of a cell, usually encoding the very enzymes which perform their excision. However, some transposons are parasitic, relying on the enzymes produced by the regular transposons. In this case, we show that a stochastic model, which takes into account the small copy numbers of the active transposons in a cell, predicts noise-induced predator-prey oscillations with a characteristic time scale that is much longer than the cell replication time, indicating that the state of the predator-prey oscillator is stored in the genome and transmitted to successive generations. Our work demonstrates the important role of the number fluctuations in the expression of mobile genetic elements, and shows explicitly how ecological concepts can be applied to the dynamics and fluctuations of living genomes.

  15. Invasive lionfish had no measurable effect on prey fish community structure across the Belizean Barrier Reef

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Serena Hackerott

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Invasive lionfish are assumed to significantly affect Caribbean reef fish communities. However, evidence of lionfish effects on native reef fishes is based on uncontrolled observational studies or small-scale, unrepresentative experiments, with findings ranging from no effect to large effects on prey density and richness. Moreover, whether lionfish affect populations and communities of native reef fishes at larger, management-relevant scales is unknown. The purpose of this study was to assess the effects of lionfish on coral reef prey fish communities in a natural complex reef system. We quantified lionfish and the density, richness, and composition of native prey fishes (0–10 cm total length at sixteen reefs along ∼250 km of the Belize Barrier Reef from 2009 to 2013. Lionfish invaded our study sites during this four-year longitudinal study, thus our sampling included fish community structure before and after our sites were invaded, i.e., we employed a modified BACI design. We found no evidence that lionfish measurably affected the density, richness, or composition of prey fishes. It is possible that higher lionfish densities are necessary to detect an effect of lionfish on prey populations at this relatively large spatial scale. Alternatively, negative effects of lionfish on prey could be small, essentially undetectable, and ecologically insignificant at our study sites. Other factors that influence the dynamics of reef fish populations including reef complexity, resource availability, recruitment, predation, and fishing could swamp any effects of lionfish on prey populations.

  16. Perceptual advertisement by the prey of stalking or ambushing predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Broom, Mark; Ruxton, Graeme D

    2012-12-21

    There has been previous theoretical explorations of the stability of signals by prey that they have detected a stalking or ambush predator, where such perceptual advertisement dissuades the predator from attacking. Here we use a game theoretical model to extend the theory to consider some empirically-motivated complexities: (i) many perceptual advertisement signals appear to have the potential to vary in intensity, (ii) higher intensity signals are likely to be most costly to produce, and (iii) some high-cost signals (such as staring directly at the predator) can only be utilised if the prey is very confident of the existence of a nearby predator (that is, there are reserved or unfakable signals). We demonstrate that these complexities still allow for stable signalling. However, we do not find solutions where prey use a range of signal intensities to signal different degrees of confidence in the proximity of a predator; with prey simply adopting a binary response of not signalling or always signalling at the same fixed level. However this fixed level will not always be the cheapest possible signal, and we predict that prey that require more certainty about proximity of a predator will use higher-cost signals. The availability of reserved signals does not prohibit the stability of signalling based on lower-cost signals, but we also find circumstances where only the reserved signal is used. We discuss the potential to empirically test our model predictions, and to develop theory further to allow perceptual advertisement to be combined with other signalling functions. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. The Fluctuation Niche in Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaume Terradas

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Classical approaches to niche in coexisting plants have undervalued temporal fluctuations. We propose that fluctuation niche is an important dimension of the total niche and interacts with habitat and life-history niches to provide a better understanding of the multidimensional niche space where ecological interactions occur. To scale a fluctuation niche, it is necessary to relate environmental constrictions or species performance not only to the absolute values of the usual environmental and ecophysiological variables but also to their variances or other measures of variability. We use Mediterranean plant communities as examples, because they present characteristic large seasonal and interannual fluctuations in water and nutrient availabilities, along an episodic-constant gradient, and because the plant responses include a number of syndromes coupled to this gradient.

  18. Invasive lionfish had no measurable effect on prey fish community structure across the Belizean Barrier Reef.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hackerott, Serena; Valdivia, Abel; Cox, Courtney E; Silbiger, Nyssa J; Bruno, John F

    2017-01-01

    Invasive lionfish are assumed to significantly affect Caribbean reef fish communities. However, evidence of lionfish effects on native reef fishes is based on uncontrolled observational studies or small-scale, unrepresentative experiments, with findings ranging from no effect to large effects on prey density and richness. Moreover, whether lionfish affect populations and communities of native reef fishes at larger, management-relevant scales is unknown. The purpose of this study was to assess the effects of lionfish on coral reef prey fish communities in a natural complex reef system. We quantified lionfish and the density, richness, and composition of native prey fishes (0-10 cm total length) at sixteen reefs along ∼250 km of the Belize Barrier Reef from 2009 to 2013. Lionfish invaded our study sites during this four-year longitudinal study, thus our sampling included fish community structure before and after our sites were invaded, i.e., we employed a modified BACI design. We found no evidence that lionfish measurably affected the density, richness, or composition of prey fishes. It is possible that higher lionfish densities are necessary to detect an effect of lionfish on prey populations at this relatively large spatial scale. Alternatively, negative effects of lionfish on prey could be small, essentially undetectable, and ecologically insignificant at our study sites. Other factors that influence the dynamics of reef fish populations including reef complexity, resource availability, recruitment, predation, and fishing could swamp any effects of lionfish on prey populations.

  19. Post-attack aposematic display in prey facilitates predator avoidance learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Changku eKang

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Warning signals protect unpalatable prey from predation because predators who learn the association between the warning signal and prey unprofitability decrease attacks on the prey. Most of the research have focused on visual aposematic signals that are constantly presented and visible to the predators. But a variety of chemically defended insects are rather cryptic when resting, and only in response to predator attacks (post-attack they perform displays of conspicuous abdomens or hindwings normally hidden under forewings. The function of those displays in unpalatable insects is not well understood. We examined two adaptive hypotheses on this facultative aposematic display using wild-caught oriental tits (Parus minor as predators. First, we tested whether the display increases the rejection of the prey by predators upon seeing the display (i.e. at the moment of attack through learning trials (aposematic signaling hypothesis. Second, we tested whether the display facilitates the memory formation between cryptic visible form of the prey and prey defense so that it prevents the predators initiate an attack upon seeing the cryptic form (facilitation hypothesis. We found that predators learned to avoid attacking the prey which supports the facilitation hypothesis. However, the support for the aposematic signaling hypothesis was equivocal. Our results open new directions of research by highlighting the possibility that similar facilitation effects may contribute to the evolution of various forms of post-attack visual displays in chemically, or otherwise, defended animals.

  20. Myxobacteria Are Able to Prey Broadly upon Clinically-Relevant Pathogens, Exhibiting a Prey Range Which Cannot Be Explained by Phylogeny

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul G. Livingstone

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Myxobacteria are natural predators of microorganisms and the subjects of concerted efforts to identify novel antimicrobial compounds. Myxobacterial predatory activity seems to require more than just the possession of specific antimicrobial metabolites. Thus a holistic approach to studying predation promises novel insights into antimicrobial action. Here, we report the isolation of 113 myxobacteria from samples of soil taken from a range of habitats in mid Wales. Predatory activity of each isolate was quantified against a panel of clinically important prey organisms, including Klebsiella pneumoniae, Proteus mirabilis, Candida albicans, Enterococcus faecalis, and three species of Staphylococcus. Myxobacterial isolates exhibited a wide range of predation activity profiles against the panel of prey. Efficient predation of all prey by isolates within the collection was observed, with K. pneumoniae and C. albicans proving particularly susceptible to myxobacterial predation. Notably efficient predators tended to be proficient at predating multiple prey organisms, suggesting they possess gene(s encoding a broad range killing activity. However, predatory activity was not congruent with phylogeny, suggesting prey range is subject to relatively rapid specialization, potentially involving lateral gene transfer. The broad but patchy prey ranges observed for natural myxobacterial isolates also implies multiple (potentially overlapping genetic determinants are responsible for dictating predatory activity.

  1. Why plankton modellers should reconsider using rectangular hyperbolic (Michaelis-Menten, Monod descriptions of predator-prey interactions

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    Kevin John Flynn

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Rectangular hyperbolic type 2 (RHt2; Michaelis-Menten or Monod -like functions are commonly used to describe predation kinetics in plankton models, either alone or together with a prey selectivity algorithm deploying the same half-saturation constant for all prey types referenced to external prey biomass abundance. We present an analysis that indicates that such descriptions are liable to give outputs that are not plausible according to encounter theory. This is especially so for multi-prey type applications or where changes are made to the maximum feeding rate during a simulation. The RHt2 approach also gives no or limited potential for descriptions of events such as true de-selection of prey, effects of turbulence on encounters, or changes in grazer motility with satiation. We present an alternative, which carries minimal parameterisation effort and computational cost, linking allometric algorithms relating prey abundance and encounter rates to a prey-selection function controlled by satiation. The resultant Satiation-Controlled-Encounter-Based (SCEB function provides a flexible construct describing numeric predator-prey interactions with biomass-feedback control of grazing. The SCEB function includes an attack component similar to that in the Holling disk equation but SCEB differs in having only a single (satiation-based handling constant and an explicit maximum grazing rate. We argue that there is no justification for continuing to deploy RHt2 functions to describe plankton predator-prey interactions.

  2. Presence of Native Prey Does Not Divert Predation on Exotic Pests by Harmonia axyridis in Its Indigenous Range

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Gui Fen; Lövei, Gábor L; Wu, Xia; Wan, Fang Hao

    2016-01-01

    In China, two invasive pests, Bemisia tabaci MEAM1 (Gennadius) and Frankliniella occidentalis (Pergande), often co-occur with the native pest, Aphis gossypii (Glover), on plants of Malvaceae and Cucurbitaceae. All three are preyed on by the native ladybird, Harmonia axyridis (Pallas); however, the native predator might be expected to prefer native prey to the exotic ones due to a shared evolutionary past. In order to clarify whether the presence of native prey affected the consumption of these two invasive species by the native predator, field-cage experiments were conducted. A duplex qPCR was used to simultaneously detect both non-native pests within the gut of the predator. H. axyridis readily accepted both invasive prey species, but preferred B. tabaci. With all three prey species available, H. axyridis consumption of B. tabaci was 39.3±2.2% greater than consumption of F. occidentalis. The presence of A. gossypii reduced (by 59.9% on B. tabaci, and by 60.6% on F. occidentalis), but did not stop predation on the two exotic prey when all three were present. The consumption of B. tabaci was similar whether it was alone or together with A. gossypii. However, the presence of aphids reduced predation on the invasive thrips. Thus, some invasive prey may be incorporated into the prey range of a native generalist predator even in the presence of preferred native prey. PMID:27391468

  3. Are lemmings prey or predators?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turchin, P.; Oksanen, L.; Ekerholm, P.; Oksanen, T.; Henttonen, H.

    2000-06-01

    Large oscillations in the populations of Norwegian lemmings have mystified both professional ecologists and lay public. Ecologists suspect that these oscillations are driven by a trophic mechanism: either an interaction between lemmings and their food supply, or an interaction between lemmings and their predators. If lemming cycles are indeed driven by a trophic interaction, can we tell whether lemmings act as the resource (`prey') or the consumer (`predator')? In trophic interaction models, peaks of resource density generally have a blunt, rounded shape, whereas peaks of consumer density are sharp and angular. Here we have applied several statistical tests to three lemming datasets and contrasted them with comparable data for cyclic voles. We find that vole peaks are blunt, consistent with their cycles being driven by the interaction with predators. In contrast, the shape of lemming peaks is consistent with the hypothesis that lemmings are functional predators, that is, their cycles are driven by their interaction with food plants. Our findings suggest that a single mechanism, such as interaction between rodents and predators, is unlikely to provide the `universal' explanation of all cyclic rodent dynamics.

  4. Modulation of shark prey capture kinematics in response to sensory deprivation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gardiner, Jayne M; Atema, Jelle; Hueter, Robert E; Motta, Philip J

    2017-02-01

    The ability of predators to modulate prey capture in response to the size, location, and behavior of prey is critical to successful feeding on a variety of prey types. Modulating in response to changes in sensory information may be critical to successful foraging in a variety of environments. Three shark species with different feeding morphologies and behaviors were filmed using high-speed videography while capturing live prey: the ram-feeding blacktip shark, the ram-biting bonnethead, and the suction-feeding nurse shark. Sharks were examined intact and after sensory information was blocked (olfaction, vision, mechanoreception, and electroreception, alone and in combination), to elucidate the contribution of the senses to the kinematics of prey capture. In response to sensory deprivation, the blacktip shark demonstrated the greatest amount of modulation, followed by the nurse shark. In the absence of olfaction, blacktip sharks open the jaws slowly, suggestive of less motivation. Without lateral line cues, blacktip sharks capture prey from greater horizontal angles using increased ram. When visual cues are absent, blacktip sharks elevate the head earlier and to a greater degree, allowing them to overcome imprecise position of the prey relative to the mouth, and capture prey using decreased ram, while suction remains unchanged. When visual cues are absent, nurse sharks open the mouth wider, extend the labial cartilages further, and increase suction while simultaneously decreasing ram. Unlike some bony fish, neither species switches feeding modalities (i.e. from ram to suction or vice versa). Bonnetheads failed to open the mouth when electrosensory cues were blocked, but otherwise little to no modulation was found in this species. These results suggest that prey capture may be less plastic in elasmobranchs than in bony fishes, possibly due to anatomical differences, and that the ability to modulate feeding kinematics in response to available sensory information varies

  5. Inferring predator behavior from attack rates on prey-replicas that differ in conspicuousness.

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    Yoel E Stuart

    Full Text Available Behavioral ecologists and evolutionary biologists have long studied how predators respond to prey items novel in color and pattern. Because a predatory response is influenced by both the predator's ability to detect the prey and a post-detection behavioral response, variation among prey types in conspicuousness may confound inference about post-prey-detection predator behavior. That is, a relatively high attack rate on a given prey type may result primarily from enhanced conspicuousness and not predators' direct preference for that prey. Few studies, however, account for such variation in conspicuousness. In a field experiment, we measured predation rates on clay replicas of two aposematic forms of the poison dart frog Dendrobates pumilio, one novel and one familiar, and two cryptic controls. To ask whether predators prefer or avoid a novel aposematic prey form independently of conspicuousness differences among replicas, we first modeled the visual system of a typical avian predator. Then, we used this model to estimate replica contrast against a leaf litter background to test whether variation in contrast alone could explain variation in predator attack rate. We found that absolute predation rates did not differ among color forms. Predation rates relative to conspicuousness did, however, deviate significantly from expectation, suggesting that predators do make post-detection decisions to avoid or attack a given prey type. The direction of this deviation from expectation, though, depended on assumptions we made about how avian predators discriminate objects from the visual background. Our results show that it is important to account for prey conspicuousness when investigating predator behavior and also that existing models of predator visual systems need to be refined.

  6. Food abundance, prey morphology, and diet specialization influence individual sea otter tool use

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujii, Jessica A.; Ralls, Katherine; Tinker, M. Tim

    2017-01-01

    Sea otters are well-known tool users, employing objects such as rocks or shells to break open invertebrate prey. We used a series of generalized linear mixed effect models to examine observational data on prey capture and tool use from 211 tagged individuals from 5 geographically defined study areas throughout the sea otter’s range in California. Our best supported model was able to explain 75% of the variation in the frequency of tool use by individual sea otters with only ecological and demographic variables. In one study area, where sea otter food resources were abundant, all individuals had similar diets focusing on preferred prey items and used tools at low to moderate frequencies (4–38% of prey captures). In the remaining areas, where sea otters were food-limited, individuals specialized on different subsets of the available prey and had a wider range of average tool-use frequency (0–98% of prey captures). The prevalence of difficult-to-access prey in individual diets was a major predictor of tool use and increased the likelihood of using tools on prey that were not difficult to access as well. Age, sex, and feeding habitat also contributed to the probability of tool use but to a smaller extent. We developed a conceptual model illustrating how food abundance, the prevalence of difficult-to-access prey, and individual diet specialization interacted to determine the likelihood that individual sea otters would use tools and considered the model’s relevance to other tool-using species.

  7. Relative Preference and Localized Food Affect Predator Space Use and Consumption of Incidental Prey.

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    Tyler E Schartel

    Full Text Available Abundant, localized foods can concentrate predators and their foraging efforts, thus altering both the spatial distribution of predation risk and predator preferences for prey that are encountered incidentally. However, few investigations have quantified the spatial scale over which localized foods affect predator foraging behavior and consumption of incidental prey. In spring 2010, we experimentally tested how point-source foods altered how generalist predators (white-footed mice, Peromyscus leucopus utilized space and depredated two incidental prey items: almonds (Prunus dulcis; highly profitable and maple seeds (Acer saccharum; less profitable. We estimated mouse population densities with trapping webs, quantified mouse consumption rates of these incidental prey items, and measured local mouse activity with track plates. We predicted that 1 mouse activity would be elevated near full feeders, but depressed at intermediate distances from the feeder, 2 consumption of both incidental prey would be high near feeders providing less-preferred food and, 3 consumption of incidental prey would be contingent on predator preference for prey relative to feeders providing more-preferred food. Mouse densities increased significantly from pre- to post-experiment. Mean mouse activity was unexpectedly greatest in control treatments, particularly <15 m from the control (empty feeder. Feeders with highly preferred food (sunflower seeds created localized refuges for incidental prey at intermediate distances (15 to 25m from the feeder. Feeders with less-preferred food (corn generated localized high risk for highly preferred almonds <10 m of the feeder. Our findings highlight the contingent but predictable effects of locally abundant food on risk experienced by incidental prey, which can be positive or negative depending on both spatial proximity and relative preference.

  8. The Fluctuation Niche in Plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Terradas, J.; Penuelas, J.; Lloret, F.; Penuelas, J.

    2009-01-01

    Classical approaches to niche in coexisting plants have undervalued temporal fluctuations. We propose that fluctuation niche is an important dimension of the total niche and interacts with habitat and life-history niches to provide a better understanding of the multidimensional niche space where ecological interactions occur. To scale a fluctuation niche, it is necessary to relate environmental constrictions or species performance not only to the absolute values of the usual environmental and eco physiological variables but also to their variances or other measures of variability. We use Mediterranean plant communities as examples, because they present characteristic large seasonal and inter annual fluctuations in water and nutrient availabilities, along an episodic-constant gradient, and because the plant responses include a number of syndromes coupled to this gradient.

  9. Analysis of dynamic multiplicity fluctuations at PHOBOS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chai, Zhengwei; PHOBOS Collaboration; Back, B. B.; Baker, M. D.; Ballintijn, M.; Barton, D. S.; Betts, R. R.; Bickley, A. A.; Bindel, R.; Budzanowski, A.; Busza, W.; Carroll, A.; Chai, Z.; Decowski, M. P.; García, E.; George, N.; Gulbrandsen, K.; Gushue, S.; Halliwell, C.; Hamblen, J.; Heintzelman, G. A.; Henderson, C.; Hofman, D. J.; Hollis, R. S.; Holynski, R.; Holzman, B.; Iordanova, A.; Johnson, E.; Kane, J. L.; Katzy, J.; Khan, N.; Kucewicz, W.; Kulinich, P.; Kuo, C. M.; Lin, W. T.; Manly, S.; McLeod, D.; Mignerey, A. C.; Nouicer, R.; Olszewski, A.; Pak, R.; Park, I. C.; Pernegger, H.; Reed, C.; Remsberg, L. P.; Reuter, M.; Roland, C.; Roland, G.; Rosenberg, L.; Sagerer, J.; Sarin, P.; Sawicki, P.; Skulski, W.; Steinberg, P.; Stephans, G. S. F.; Sukhanov, A.; Tang, J. L.; Trzupek, A.; Vale, C.; van Nieuwenhuizen, G. J.; Verdier, R.; Wolfs, F. L. H.; Wosiek, B.; Wozniak, K.; Wuosmaa, A. H.; Wyslouch, B.

    2005-01-01

    This paper presents the analysis of the dynamic fluctuations in the inclusive charged particle multiplicity measured by PHOBOS for Au+Au collisions at surdsNN = 200GeV within the pseudo-rapidity range of -3 < η < 3. First the definition of the fluctuations observables used in this analysis is presented, together with the discussion of their physics meaning. Then the procedure for the extraction of dynamic fluctuations is described. Some preliminary results are included to illustrate the correlation features of the fluctuation observable. New dynamic fluctuations results will be available in a later publication.

  10. Solving Ratio-Dependent Predator-Prey System with Constant Effort Harvesting Using Homotopy Perturbation Method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abdoul R. Ghotbi

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Due to wide range of interest in use of bioeconomic models to gain insight into the scientific management of renewable resources like fisheries and forestry, homotopy perturbation method is employed to approximate the solution of the ratio-dependent predator-prey system with constant effort prey harvesting. The results are compared with the results obtained by Adomian decomposition method. The results show that, in new model, there are less computations needed in comparison to Adomian decomposition method.

  11. An objective approach to determining the weight ranges of prey preferred by and accessible to the five large African carnivores.

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    Hayley S Clements

    Full Text Available Broad-scale models describing predator prey preferences serve as useful departure points for understanding predator-prey interactions at finer scales. Previous analyses used a subjective approach to identify prey weight preferences of the five large African carnivores, hence their accuracy is questionable. This study uses a segmented model of prey weight versus prey preference to objectively quantify the prey weight preferences of the five large African carnivores. Based on simulations of known predator prey preference, for prey species sample sizes above 32 the segmented model approach detects up to four known changes in prey weight preference (represented by model break-points with high rates of detection (75% to 100% of simulations, depending on number of break-points and accuracy (within 1.3±4.0 to 2.7±4.4 of known break-point. When applied to the five large African carnivores, using carnivore diet information from across Africa, the model detected weight ranges of prey that are preferred, killed relative to their abundance, and avoided by each carnivore. Prey in the weight ranges preferred and killed relative to their abundance are together termed "accessible prey". Accessible prey weight ranges were found to be 14-135 kg for cheetah Acinonyx jubatus, 1-45 kg for leopard Panthera pardus, 32-632 kg for lion Panthera leo, 15-1600 kg for spotted hyaena Crocuta crocuta and 10-289 kg for wild dog Lycaon pictus. An assessment of carnivore diets throughout Africa found these accessible prey weight ranges include 88±2% (cheetah, 82±3% (leopard, 81±2% (lion, 97±2% (spotted hyaena and 96±2% (wild dog of kills. These descriptions of prey weight preferences therefore contribute to our understanding of the diet spectrum of the five large African carnivores. Where datasets meet the minimum sample size requirements, the segmented model approach provides a means of determining, and comparing, the prey weight range preferences of any carnivore

  12. Bifurcation Behavior Analysis in a Predator-Prey Model

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    Nan Wang

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available A predator-prey model is studied mathematically and numerically. The aim is to explore how some key factors influence dynamic evolutionary mechanism of steady conversion and bifurcation behavior in predator-prey model. The theoretical works have been pursuing the investigation of the existence and stability of the equilibria, as well as the occurrence of bifurcation behaviors (transcritical bifurcation, saddle-node bifurcation, and Hopf bifurcation, which can deduce a standard parameter controlled relationship and in turn provide a theoretical basis for the numerical simulation. Numerical analysis ensures reliability of the theoretical results and illustrates that three stable equilibria will arise simultaneously in the model. It testifies the existence of Bogdanov-Takens bifurcation, too. It should also be stressed that the dynamic evolutionary mechanism of steady conversion and bifurcation behavior mainly depend on a specific key parameter. In a word, all these results are expected to be of use in the study of the dynamic complexity of ecosystems.

  13. Type of prey influences biology and consumption rate of Orius insidiosus (Say (Hemiptera, Anthocoridae

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    Simone M. Mendes

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available Generalist predators are capable of consuming different types of prey, and as each prey may have distinct nutritional values, each may have a distinct impact on the biology of the predator. Therefore, the aim of this study was to determine how the consumption of different prey influences certain biological characteristics and the predatory capacity of Orius insidiosus (Say. The investigation was performed in climatic chamber at 25 ±1 ºC, RH 70 ± 10% and fotophase 12. Eggs of Anagasta kuehniella (Zeller, adults of Caliothrips phaseoli (Hood and nymphs of Aphis gossypii Glover were used as prey and were provided daily ad libitum for all the mobile stages of the predator. The results showed that biological parameters of O. insidiosus are affected differently depending on the type of prey ingested. The development time of the nymphal stage was 13.1, 11.23 and 10.25 days for O. insidiosus feeding on eggs of A. kuehniella, nymphs of A. gossypii and adults of C. phaseoli, respectively. Longevity was five times larger for adults fed on eggs of A. kuehniella (56.25 days compared to that of adults that preyed on nymphs of A. gossypii (11.44 days, and four times larger when the prey were adults of C. phaseoli (13.58 days. The consumption of eggs of A. kuehniella by predator females resulted in a shorter pre-oviposition period (3.2 days and a longer oviposition period (44.4 days when compared to the consumption of other types of prey. In addition, fecundity was increased with the consumption of eggs of A. kuehniella (195.25 eggs laid / female when compared to feeding on the other prey, C. phaseoli (70.00 eggs laid / female or A. gossypii (22.50 eggs laid / female. However, the consumption of aphids was larger (148.28 nymphs/ nymphal stage than that of thrips (74.10 thrips / nymphal stage or eggs of A. kuehniella (37.03 eggs /nymphal stage for all of the nymphal stages of the predator. The results indicate that the eggs of A. kuehniella are the type of

  14. Sabretoothed carnivores and the killing of large prey.

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    Ki Andersson

    Full Text Available Sabre-like canines clearly have the potential to inflict grievous wounds leading to massive blood loss and rapid death. Hypotheses concerning sabretooth killing modes include attack to soft parts such as the belly or throat, where biting deep is essential to generate strikes reaching major blood vessels. Sabretoothed carnivorans are widely interpreted as hunters of larger and more powerful prey than that of their present-day nonsabretoothed relatives. However, the precise functional advantage of the sabretooth bite, particularly in relation to prey size, is unknown. Here, we present a new point-to-point bite model and show that, for sabretooths, depth of the killing bite decreases dramatically with increasing prey size. The extended gape of sabretooths only results in considerable increase in bite depth when biting into prey with a radius of less than ∼10 cm. For sabretooths, this size-reversed functional advantage suggests predation on species within a similar size range to those attacked by present-day carnivorans, rather than "megaherbivores" as previously believed. The development of the sabretooth condition appears to represent a shift in function and killing behaviour, rather than one in predator-prey relations. Furthermore, our results demonstrate how sabretoothed carnivorans are likely to have evolved along a functionally continuous trajectory: beginning as an extension of a jaw-powered killing bite, as adopted by present-day pantherine cats, followed by neck-powered biting and thereafter shifting to neck-powered shear-biting. We anticipate this new insight to be a starting point for detailed study of the evolution of pathways that encompass extreme specialisation, for example, understanding how neck-powered biting shifts into shear-biting and its significance for predator-prey interactions. We also expect that our model for point-to-point biting and bite depth estimations will yield new insights into the behaviours of a broad range of

  15. Time Delayed Stage-Structured Predator-Prey Model with Birth Pulse and Pest Control Tactics

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    Mei Yan

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Normally, chemical pesticides kill not only pests but also their natural enemies. In order to better control the pests, two-time delayed stage-structured predator-prey models with birth pulse and pest control tactics are proposed and analyzed by using impulsive differential equations in present work. The stability threshold conditions for the mature prey-eradication periodic solutions of two models are derived, respectively. The effects of key parameters including killing efficiency rate, pulse period, the maximum birth effort per unit of time of natural enemy, and maturation time of prey on the threshold values are discussed in more detail. By comparing the two threshold values of mature prey-extinction, we provide the fact that the second control tactic is more effective than the first control method.

  16. When prey provide more than food: mammalian predators appropriating the refugia of their prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bill Zielinski

    2015-01-01

    Some mammalian predators acquire both food and shelter from their prey, by eating them and using the refugia the prey construct. I searched the literature for examples of predators that exhibit this behavior and summarize their taxonomic affiliations, relative sizes, and distributions. I hypothesized that size ratios of species involved in this dynamic would be near 1....

  17. Prey selection of lions Panthera leo in a small, enclosed reserve

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    R.J. Power

    2002-12-01

    Full Text Available Annual trends in numbers of ungulate species on a 15 km² reserve from 1993 to 1998, were evaluated in the context of lion Panthera leo reintroduction during 1996, and subsequent predation by them. The ungulate prey base was enumerated annually by aerial counts and a road count that took place during 1998. The lion prey record was obtained from direct observations of a radio-located pride of eight lions and daily reserve management records. All ungulate species that underwent precipituous declines were also the most important prey to lions, comprising over 80 % of their prey, and they were preyed upon according to their availability. Lion predation was causal for the declines in wildebeest Connochaetes taurinus, Blesbok Damaliscus pygargus phillipsi and Warthog Phacochoerus africana, while the decline in Kudu Tragelaphus strepsiceros was only partly ascribed to lions, as other non-lion related mortality sources were identified. The only ungulate species to increase subsequent to lion reintroduction was the Impala Aepyceros melampus, which was furthermore under-selected by lions. The uncontrolled population growth of Impala could have elicited ecological degradation, and it was advised to either not stock Impala, or otherwise control their numbers if lions are unable to do so. Lion hunting success and kill rate, were 21 % (n = 63 and 1 kill/4.4 days, respectively. Three bushpigs Potamochoerus larvatus were killed but not utilised,and this finding is corroborated by an intensive study in Kwazulu-Natal, and this aversion is discussed. Predators can cause unprecedented declines of their prey where the prey are confined to small reserves that have no refuge from predation. On an annual basis, prey may need to be augmented to sustain predators on small reserves

  18. Australian fur seals (Arctocephalus pusillus doriferus use raptorial biting and suction feeding when targeting prey in different foraging scenarios.

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    David P Hocking

    Full Text Available Foraging behaviours used by two female Australian fur seals (Arctocephalus pusillus doriferus were documented during controlled feeding trials. During these trials the seals were presented with prey either free-floating in open water or concealed within a mobile ball or a static box feeding device. When targeting free-floating prey both subjects primarily used raptorial biting in combination with suction, which was used to draw prey to within range of the teeth. When targeting prey concealed within either the mobile or static feeding device, the seals were able to use suction to draw out prey items that could not be reached by biting. Suction was followed by lateral water expulsion, where water drawn into the mouth along with the prey item was purged via the sides of the mouth. Vibrissae were used to explore the surface of the feeding devices, especially when locating the openings in which the prey items had been hidden. The mobile ball device was also manipulated by pushing it with the muzzle to knock out concealed prey, which was not possible when using the static feeding device. To knock prey out of this static device one seal used targeted bubble blowing, where a focused stream of bubbles was blown out of the nose into the openings in the device. Once captured in the jaws, prey items were manipulated and re-oriented using further mouth movements or chews so that they could be swallowed head first. While most items were swallowed whole underwater, some were instead taken to the surface and held in the teeth, while being vigorously shaken to break them into smaller pieces before swallowing. The behavioural flexibility displayed by Australian fur seals likely assists in capturing and consuming the extremely wide range of prey types that are targeted in the wild, during both benthic and epipelagic foraging.

  19. Trait-based diet selection: prey behaviour and morphology predict vulnerability to predation in reef fish communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green, Stephanie J; Côté, Isabelle M

    2014-11-01

    Understanding how predators select their prey can provide important insights into community structure and dynamics. However, the suite of prey species available to a predator is often spatially and temporally variable. As a result, species-specific selectivity data are of limited use for predicting novel predator-prey interactions because they are assemblage specific. We present a method for predicting diet selection that is applicable across prey assemblages, based on identifying general morphological and behavioural traits of prey that confer vulnerability to predation independent of species identity. We apply this trait-based approach to examining prey selection by Indo-Pacific lionfish (Pterois volitans and Pterois miles), invasive predators that prey upon species-rich reef fish communities and are rapidly spreading across the western Atlantic. We first generate hypotheses about morphological and behavioural traits recurring across fish species that could facilitate or deter predation by lionfish. Constructing generalized linear mixed-effects models that account for relatedness among prey taxa, we test whether these traits predict patterns of diet selection by lionfish within two independent data sets collected at different spatial scales: (i) in situ visual observations of prey consumption and availability for individual lionfish and (ii) comparisons of prey abundance in lionfish stomach contents to availability on invaded reefs at large. Both analyses reveal that a number of traits predicted to affect vulnerability to predation, including body size, body shape, position in the water column and aggregation behaviour, are important determinants of diet selection by lionfish. Small, shallow-bodied, solitary fishes found resting on or just above reefs are the most vulnerable. Fishes that exhibit parasite cleaning behaviour experience a significantly lower risk of predation than non-cleaning fishes, and fishes that are nocturnally active are at significantly

  20. The curse of the prey: Sarcoptes mite molecular analysis reveals potential prey-to-predator parasitic infestation in wild animals from Masai Mara, Kenya

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    Soriguer Ramón C

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Recently, there have been attempts to understand the molecular epidemiology of Sarcoptes scabiei, to evaluate the gene flow between isolates of S. scabiei from different hosts and geographic regions. However, to our knowledge, a molecular study has not been carried out to assess the molecular diversity and gene flow of Sarcoptes mite in a predator/prey ecosystem. Results Our study revealed an absence of gene flow between the two herbivore (Thomson's gazelle and wildebeest- and between the two carnivore (lion and cheetah-derived Sarcoptes populations from Masai Mara (Kenya, which is in discrepancy with the host-taxon law described for wild animals in Europe. Lion- and wildebeest-derived Sarcoptes mite populations were similar yet different from the Thomson's gazelle-derived Sarcoptes population. This could be attributed to Sarcoptes cross-infestation from wildebeest ("favourite prey" of the lion, but not from Thomson's gazelle. The cheetah-derived Sarcoptes population had different subpopulations: one is cheetah-private, one similar to the wildebeest- and lion-derived Sarcoptes populations, and another similar to the Thomson's gazelle-derived Sarcoptes mite population, where both wildebeest and Thomson's gazelle are "favourite preys" for the cheetah. Conclusions In a predator/prey ecosystem, like Masai Mara in Kenya, it seems that Sarcoptes infestation in wild animals is prey-to-predator-wise, depending on the predator's "favourite prey". More studies on the lion and cheetah diet and behaviour could be of great help to clarify the addressed hypotheses. This study could have further ramification in the epidemiological studies and the monitoring protocols of the neglected Sarcoptes mite in predator/prey ecosystems.

  1. Stochastic population dynamics in spatially extended predator-prey systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dobramysl, Ulrich; Mobilia, Mauro; Pleimling, Michel; Täuber, Uwe C.

    2018-02-01

    Spatially extended population dynamics models that incorporate demographic noise serve as case studies for the crucial role of fluctuations and correlations in biological systems. Numerical and analytic tools from non-equilibrium statistical physics capture the stochastic kinetics of these complex interacting many-particle systems beyond rate equation approximations. Including spatial structure and stochastic noise in models for predator-prey competition invalidates the neutral Lotka-Volterra population cycles. Stochastic models yield long-lived erratic oscillations stemming from a resonant amplification mechanism. Spatially extended predator-prey systems display noise-stabilized activity fronts that generate persistent correlations. Fluctuation-induced renormalizations of the oscillation parameters can be analyzed perturbatively via a Doi-Peliti field theory mapping of the master equation; related tools allow detailed characterization of extinction pathways. The critical steady-state and non-equilibrium relaxation dynamics at the predator extinction threshold are governed by the directed percolation universality class. Spatial predation rate variability results in more localized clusters, enhancing both competing species’ population densities. Affixing variable interaction rates to individual particles and allowing for trait inheritance subject to mutations induces fast evolutionary dynamics for the rate distributions. Stochastic spatial variants of three-species competition with ‘rock-paper-scissors’ interactions metaphorically describe cyclic dominance. These models illustrate intimate connections between population dynamics and evolutionary game theory, underscore the role of fluctuations to drive populations toward extinction, and demonstrate how space can support species diversity. Two-dimensional cyclic three-species May-Leonard models are characterized by the emergence of spiraling patterns whose properties are elucidated by a mapping onto a complex

  2. Fluctuations and Photons

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gupta, Sourendu

    2007-01-01

    In this talk I discuss measures of fluctuations, especially those leading to the proof that the quark gluon plasma indeed contains quarks. I discuss the quark mass dependence of the critical end point of QCD. Then I discuss probes of the QCD critical point. Non-gaussian behaviour of event-to-event fluctuations of conserved quantum numbers is one such probe. Another is due to the coupling of fluctuations in baryon number and electrical charge, giving rise to long range random fluctuations of local charge density which relax slowly. These fluctuations can scatter photons, giving rise to critical opalescence

  3. Fluctuations and Photons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gupta, Sourendu

    2007-02-01

    In this talk I discuss measures of fluctuations, especially those leading to the proof that the quark gluon plasma indeed contains quarks. I discuss the quark mass dependence of the critical end point of QCD. Then I discuss probes of the QCD critical point. Non-gaussian behaviour of event-to-event fluctuations of conserved quantum numbers is one such probe. Another is due to the coupling of fluctuations in baryon number and electrical charge, giving rise to long range random fluctuations of local charge density which relax slowly. These fluctuations can scatter photons, giving rise to critical opalescence.

  4. Fluctuations and Photons

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gupta, Sourendu [Department of Theoretical Physics, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Homi Bhabha Road, Mumbai 400005 (India)

    2007-02-15

    In this talk I discuss measures of fluctuations, especially those leading to the proof that the quark gluon plasma indeed contains quarks. I discuss the quark mass dependence of the critical end point of QCD. Then I discuss probes of the QCD critical point. Non-gaussian behaviour of event-to-event fluctuations of conserved quantum numbers is one such probe. Another is due to the coupling of fluctuations in baryon number and electrical charge, giving rise to long range random fluctuations of local charge density which relax slowly. These fluctuations can scatter photons, giving rise to critical opalescence.

  5. Non-pest prey do not disrupt aphid predation by a web-building spider.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Welch, K D; Whitney, T D; Harwood, J D

    2016-02-01

    A generalist predator's ability to contribute to biological control is influenced by the decisions it makes during foraging. Predators often use flexible foraging tactics, which allows them to pursue specific types of prey at the cost of reducing the likelihood of capturing other types of prey. When a pest insect has low nutritional quality or palatability for a predator, the predator is likely to reject that prey in favour of pursuing alternative, non-pest prey. This is often thought to limit the effectiveness of generalist predators in consuming aphids, which are of low nutritional quality for many generalist predators. Here, we report behavioural assays that test the hypothesis that the generalist predator, Grammonota inornata (Araneae: Linyphiidae), preferentially forages for a non-pest prey with high nutritional quality (springtails), and rejects a pest prey with low nutritional quality (aphids). In no-choice assays, molecular gut-content analysis revealed that spiders continued to feed on the low-quality aphids at high rates, even when high-quality springtails were readily available. When provided a choice between aphids and springtails in two-way choice tests, spiders did not show the expected preference for springtails. Decision-making by spiders during foraging therefore appears to be sub-optimal, possibly because of attraction to the less frequently encountered of two preys as part of a dietary diversification strategy. These results indicate that behavioural preferences alone do not necessarily compromise the pest-suppression capacity of natural enemies: even nutritionally sub-optimal pest prey can potentially be subject to predation and suppression by natural enemies.

  6. An unprecedented role reversal: ground beetle larvae (Coleoptera: Carabidae lure amphibians and prey upon them.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gil Wizen

    Full Text Available Amphibians often feed on beetle larvae, including those of ground beetles (Carabidae. Preliminary reports have detailed an unusual trophic interaction in which, in contrast, larvae of the ground beetle Epomis prey upon juvenile and adult amphibians. While it is known that these larvae feed exclusively on amphibians, how the predator-prey encounter occurs to the advantage of the beetle larvae had been unknown to date. Using laboratory observations and controlled experiments, we recorded the feeding behavior of Epomis larvae, as well as the behavior of their amphibian prey. Here we reveal that larvae of two species of Epomis (E. circumscriptus and E. dejeani lure their potential predator, taking advantage of the amphibian's predation behavior. The Epomis larva combines a sit-and-wait strategy with unique movements of its antennae and mandibles to draw the attention of the amphibian to the presence of a potential prey. The intensity of this enticement increases with decreasing distance between the larva and the amphibian. When the amphibian attacks, the larva almost always manages to avoid the predator's protracted tongue, exploiting the opportunity to attach itself to the amphibian's body and initiate feeding. Our findings suggest that the trophic interaction between Epomis larvae and amphibians is one of the only natural cases of obligatory predator-prey role reversal. Moreover, this interaction involves a small insect larva that successfully lures and preys on a larger vertebrate. Such role reversal is exceptional in the animal world, extending our perspective of co-evolution in the arms race between predator and prey, and suggesting that counterattack defense behavior has evolved into predator-prey role reversal.

  7. Chemical basis of prey recognition in thamnophiine snakes: the unexpected new roles of parvalbumins.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maïté Smargiassi

    Full Text Available Detecting and locating prey are key to predatory success within trophic chains. Predators use various signals through specialized visual, olfactory, auditory or tactile sensory systems to pinpoint their prey. Snakes chemically sense their prey through a highly developed auxiliary olfactory sense organ, the vomeronasal organ (VNO. In natricine snakes that are able to feed on land and water, the VNO plays a critical role in predatory behavior by detecting cues, known as vomodors, which are produced by their potential prey. However, the chemical nature of these cues remains unclear. Recently, we demonstrated that specific proteins-parvalbumins-present in the cutaneous mucus of the common frog (Rana temporaria may be natural chemoattractive proteins for these snakes. Here, we show that parvalbumins and parvalbumin-like proteins, which are mainly intracellular, are physiologically present in the epidermal mucous cells and mucus of several frog and fish genera from both fresh and salt water. These proteins are located in many tissues and function as Ca(2+ buffers. In addition, we clarified the intrinsic role of parvalbumins present in the cutaneous mucus of amphibians and fishes. We demonstrate that these Ca(2+-binding proteins participate in innate bacterial defense mechanisms by means of calcium chelation. We show that these parvalbumins are chemoattractive for three different thamnophiine snakes, suggesting that these chemicals play a key role in their prey-recognition mechanism. Therefore, we suggest that recognition of parvalbumin-like proteins or other calcium-binding proteins by the VNO could be a generalized prey-recognition process in snakes. Detecting innate prey defense mechanism compounds may have driven the evolution of this predator-prey interaction.

  8. The adaptation of generalist predators' diet in a multi-prey context: insights from new functional responses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baudrot, Virgile; Perasso, Antoine; Fritsch, Clémentine; Giraudoux, Patrick; Raoul, Francis

    2016-07-01

    The ability for a generalist consumer to adapt its foraging strategy (the multi-species functional response, MSFR) is a milestone in ecology as it contributes to the structure of food webs. The trophic interaction between a generalist predator, as the red fox or the barn owl, and its prey community, mainly composed of small mammals, has been empirically and theoretically widely studied. However, the extent to which these predators adapt their diet according to both multi-annual changes in multiple prey species availability (frequency dependence) and the variation of the total prey density (density dependence) is unexplored.We provide a new general model of MSFR disentangling changes in prey preference according to variation of prey frequency (switching) and of total prey density (we propose the new concept of "rank switching"). We apply these models to two large data sets of red fox and barn owl foraging. We show that both frequency-dependent and density-dependent switching are critical properties of these two systems, suggesting that barn owl and red fox have an accurate image of the prey community in terms of frequency and absolute density. Moreover, we show that negative switching, which can lead to prey instability, is a strong property of the two systems. © 2016 by the Ecological Society of America.

  9. Nest occupation and prey grabbing by saker falcon (Falco cherrug on power lines in the province of Vojvodina (Serbia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Puzović S.

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Research on nest occupation and prey grabbing by saker falcon (Falco cherrug on power lines in Vojvodina (Serbia was done in the period from 1986 to 2004. During three specially analyzed periods, saker falcon took the nests of raven (Corvus corax in 91% of a total of 22 cases of nest occupation, and those of hooded crow (Corvus corone cornix in only 9%. Saker falcon regularly grabs prey from different birds that occasionally or constantly spend time around power lines [Kestrel (Falco tinnunculus, hobby (Falco subbuteo, hooded crow (Corvus corone cornix, jack-daw (Corvus monedula, marsh harrier (Circus aeruginosus, hen harrier (Circus cyaneus, buzzard (Buteo buteo, and raven (Corvus corax]. One year a studied pair of saker falcons on a power line in Donji Srem, Serbia grabbed prey from five different species of birds. Out of a total of 40 cases of prey grabbing in the period from January to December, as much 70% of the grabbed prey was taken from kestrel (Falco tinnunculus. During the winter and early spring, prey was grabbed predominantly by males; after May, prey was sometimes grabbed by females as well. Most of the grabbed prey was common vole (Microtus arvalis.

  10. Disturbed flow in an aquatic environment may create a sensory refuge for aggregated prey

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Asa Johannesen

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Predators use olfactory cues moved within water and air to locate prey. Because prey aggregations may produce more cue and be easier to detect, predation could limit aggregation size. However, disturbance in the flow may diminish the reliability of odour as a prey cue, impeding predator foraging success and efficiency. We explore how different cue concentrations (as a proxy for prey group size affect risk to prey by fish predators in disturbed (more turbulent or mixed and non-disturbed (less mixed flowing water. We find that increasing odour cue concentration increases predation risk and disturbing the flow reduces predation risk. At high cue concentration fish were able to locate the cue source in both disturbed and non-disturbed flow, but at medium concentrations, predators only located the cue source more often than expected by chance in non-disturbed flow. This suggests that objects disturbing flow provide a sensory refuge allowing prey to form larger groups, but that group sizes may be limited by level of disturbance to the flow.

  11. On the Gause predator-prey model with a refuge: a fresh look at the history.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Křivan, Vlastimil

    2011-04-07

    This article re-analyses a prey-predator model with a refuge introduced by one of the founders of population ecology Gause and his co-workers to explain discrepancies between their observations and predictions of the Lotka-Volterra prey-predator model. They replaced the linear functional response used by Lotka and Volterra by a saturating functional response with a discontinuity at a critical prey density. At concentrations below this critical density prey were effectively in a refuge while at a higher densities they were available to predators. Thus, their functional response was of the Holling type III. They analyzed this model and predicted existence of a limit cycle in predator-prey dynamics. In this article I show that their model is ill posed, because trajectories are not well defined. Using the Filippov method, I define and analyze solutions of the Gause model. I show that depending on parameter values, there are three possibilities: (1) trajectories converge to a limit cycle, as predicted by Gause, (2) trajectories converge to an equilibrium, or (3) the prey population escapes predator control and grows to infinity. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Microbiological survey of birds of prey pellets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dipineto, Ludovico; Bossa, Luigi Maria De Luca; Pace, Antonino; Russo, Tamara Pasqualina; Gargiulo, Antonio; Ciccarelli, Francesca; Raia, Pasquale; Caputo, Vincenzo; Fioretti, Alessandro

    2015-08-01

    A microbiological survey of 73 pellets collected from different birds of prey species housed at the Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation Center of Napoli (southern Italy) was performed. Pellets were analyzed by culture and biochemical methods as well as by serotyping and polymerase chain reaction. We isolated a wide range of bacteria some of them also pathogens for humans (i.e. Salmonella enterica serotype Typhimurium, Campylobacter coli, Escherichia coli O serogroups). This study highlights the potential role of birds of prey as asymptomatic carriers of pathogenic bacteria which could be disseminated in the environment not only through the birds of prey feces but also through their pellets. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Prey capture by freely swimming flagellates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andersen, Anders; Dolger, Julia; Nielsen, Lasse Tor; Kiorboe, Thomas

    2017-11-01

    Flagellates are unicellular microswimmers that propel themselves using one or several beating flagella. Here, we explore the dependence of swimming kinematics and prey clearance rate on flagellar arrangement and determine optimal flagellar arrangements and essential trade-offs. To describe near-cell flows around freely swimming flagellates we consider a model in which the cell is represented by a no-slip sphere and each flagellum by a point force. For uniflagellates pulled by a single flagellum the model suggests that a long flagellum favors fast swimming, whereas high clearance rate is favored by a very short flagellum. For biflagellates with both a longitudinal and a transversal flagellum we explore the helical swimming kinematics and the prey capture sites. We compare our predictions with observations of swimming kinematics, prey capture, and flows around common marine flagellates. The Centre for Ocean Life is a VKR Centre of Excellence supported by the Villum Foundation.

  14. Non-webbuilding spiders: prey specialists or generalists?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nentwig, Wolfgang

    1986-07-01

    Feeding experiments were performed with seven species of non-webbuilding spiders and a variety of prey taxa. Some species were generally polyphagous whereas other spiders restricted their prey to a few groups. At one end of the spectrum of prey specialization the thomisid Misumena vatia is limited to a few taxa of possible prey (Table 1). The literature of prey records of non-webbuilding spiders is reviewed (Table 2) with special emphasis on oligophagous or monophagous spiders. Monophagous spiders are generally rare and have specialized on only a few prey taxa: social insects (ants, bees, termites) and spiders.

  15. Interactive effects of prey refuge and additional food for predator in a diffusive predator-prey system

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chakraborty, Subhendu; Tiwari, P. K.; Sasmal, S.K.

    2017-01-01

    a predator-prey system with prey refuge and additional food for predator apart from the focal prey in the presence of diffusion. Our main aim is to study the interactive effects of prey refuge and additional food on the system dynamics and especially on the controllability of prey (pest). Different types......Additional food for predators has been considered as one of the best established techniques in integrated pest management and biological conservation programs. In natural systems, there are several other factors, e.g., prey refuge, affect the success of pest control. In this paper, we analyze...... of Turing patterns such as stripes, spots, holes, and mixtures of them are obtained. It is found that the supply of additional food to the predator is unable to control the prey (pest) population when prey refuge is high. Moreover, when both prey refuge and additional food are low, spatial distribution...

  16. Can species-specific prey responses to chemical cues explain prey susceptibility to predation?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Šmejkal, Marek; Ricard, Daniel; Sajdlová, Zuzana; Čech, Martin; Vejřík, Lukáš; Blabolil, Petr; Vejříková, Ivana; Prchalová, Marie; Vašek, Mojmír; Souza, Allan T; Brönmark, Christer; Peterka, Jiří

    2018-05-01

    The perception of danger represents an essential ability of prey for gaining an informational advantage over their natural enemies. Especially in complex environments or at night, animals strongly rely on chemoreception to avoid predators. The ability to recognize danger by chemical cues and subsequent adaptive responses to predation threats should generally increase prey survival. Recent findings suggest that European catfish ( Silurus glanis ) introduction induce changes in fish community and we tested whether the direction of change can be attributed to differences in chemical cue perception. We tested behavioral response to chemical cues using three species of freshwater fish common in European water: rudd ( Scardinius erythrophthalmus ), roach ( Rutilus rutilus ), and perch ( Perca fluviatilis ). Further, we conducted a prey selectivity experiment to evaluate the prey preferences of the European catfish. Roach exhibited the strongest reaction to chemical cues, rudd decreased use of refuge and perch did not alter any behavior in the experiment. These findings suggest that chemical cue perception might be behind community data change and we encourage collecting more community data of tested prey species before and after European catfish introduction to test the hypothesis. We conclude that used prey species can be used as a model species to verify whether chemical cue perception enhances prey survival.

  17. Predator-prey encounters in turbulent waters

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mann, J.; Ott, Søren; Pécseli, H.L.

    2002-01-01

    With reference to studies of predator-prey encounters in turbulent waters, we demonstrate the feasibility of an experimental method for investigations of particle fluxes to an absorbing surface in turbulent flows. A laboratory experiment is carried out, where an approximately homogeneous and isot......With reference to studies of predator-prey encounters in turbulent waters, we demonstrate the feasibility of an experimental method for investigations of particle fluxes to an absorbing surface in turbulent flows. A laboratory experiment is carried out, where an approximately homogeneous...

  18. Comparing prey composition and prey size delivered to nestlings by great tits, Parus major, and blue tits, Cyanistes caeruleus, in a Mediterranean sclerophyllous mixed forest

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Navalpotro, H.

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Resource partitioning is a central issue in ecology because it can establish to which point similar species can coexist in the same habitat. Great tits and blue tits have been classical model species in studies of trophic competence. However, most studies on the topic have been conducted at localities where caterpillars are by far the most relevant prey brought to the nestlings. In Mediterranean mixed forests, nevertheless, the abundance of caterpillars is relatively low and it is spiders that play a key role in the diet of great tits, at least for nestlings. The aim of this paper was to study nest food provisioning to establish the degree of diet overlap of these two tit species in a Mediterranean forest. Our results showed that blue tit feeding rates were higher than those of great tits, probably to compensate for the smaller prey delivered to nestlings by blue tits. Blue tits brought more spiders than great tits, while grey tits brought larger prey and more caterpillars. This may be because larger great tits can prey upon larger prey items than blue tits. As a main result, this study supports the view of resource partitioning by great and blue tits in sclerophyllous Mediterranean forest ecosystem.

  19. Echolocating bats cry out loud to detect their prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annemarie Surlykke

    Full Text Available Echolocating bats have successfully exploited a broad range of habitats and prey. Much research has demonstrated how time-frequency structure of echolocation calls of different species is adapted to acoustic constraints of habitats and foraging behaviors. However, the intensity of bat calls has been largely neglected although intensity is a key factor determining echolocation range and interactions with other bats and prey. Differences in detection range, in turn, are thought to constitute a mechanism promoting resource partitioning among bats, which might be particularly important for the species-rich bat assemblages in the tropics. Here we present data on emitted intensities for 11 species from 5 families of insectivorous bats from Panamá hunting in open or background cluttered space or over water. We recorded all bats in their natural habitat in the field using a multi-microphone array coupled with photographic methods to assess the bats' position in space to estimate emitted call intensities. All species emitted intense search signals. Output intensity was reduced when closing in on background by 4-7 dB per halving of distance. Source levels of open space and edge space foragers (Emballonuridae, Mormoopidae, Molossidae, and Vespertilionidae ranged between 122-134 dB SPL. The two Noctilionidae species hunting over water emitted the loudest signals recorded so far for any bat with average source levels of ca. 137 dB SPL and maximum levels above 140 dB SPL. In spite of this ten-fold variation in emitted intensity, estimates indicated, surprisingly, that detection distances for prey varied far less; bats emitting the highest intensities also emitted the highest frequencies, which are severely attenuated in air. Thus, our results suggest that bats within a local assemblage compensate for frequency dependent attenuation by adjusting the emitted intensity to achieve comparable detection distances for prey across species. We conclude that for bats

  20. Weather and Prey Predict Mammals' Visitation to Water.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grant Harris

    Full Text Available Throughout many arid lands of Africa, Australia and the United States, wildlife agencies provide water year-round for increasing game populations and enhancing biodiversity, despite concerns that water provisioning may favor species more dependent on water, increase predation, and reduce biodiversity. In part, understanding the effects of water provisioning requires identifying why and when animals visit water. Employing this information, by matching water provisioning with use by target species, could assist wildlife management objectives while mitigating unintended consequences of year-round watering regimes. Therefore, we examined if weather variables (maximum temperature, relative humidity [RH], vapor pressure deficit [VPD], long and short-term precipitation and predator-prey relationships (i.e., prey presence predicted water visitation by 9 mammals. We modeled visitation as recorded by trail cameras at Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge, New Mexico, USA (June 2009 to September 2014 using generalized linear modeling. For 3 native ungulates, elk (Cervus Canadensis, mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus, and pronghorn (Antilocapra americana, less long-term precipitation and higher maximum temperatures increased visitation, including RH for mule deer. Less long-term precipitation and higher VPD increased oryx (Oryx gazella and desert cottontail rabbits (Sylvilagus audubonii visitation. Long-term precipitation, with RH or VPD, predicted visitation for black-tailed jackrabbits (Lepus californicus. Standardized model coefficients demonstrated that the amount of long-term precipitation influenced herbivore visitation most. Weather (especially maximum temperature and prey (cottontails and jackrabbits predicted bobcat (Lynx rufus visitation. Mule deer visitation had the largest influence on coyote (Canis latrans visitation. Puma (Puma concolor visitation was solely predicted by prey visitation (elk, mule deer, oryx. Most ungulate visitation peaked during

  1. Fluctuations in the multiparticle dynamics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bozek, P.; Ploszajczak, M.

    1993-01-01

    The appearance and properties of intermittent fluctuations in physical systems, in particular the formation of rare structures in transport phenomena are discussed. The distribution of fluctuations approaches a limiting log-normal statistical distribution. The log-normal distribution is introduced as a simple parametrization of the energy fluctuations leading to the subthreshold production of particles in nuclear collisions, and it is shown that it fits all available data both for total π 0 production cross section as well as the π 0 kinetic energy spectra for E/A < 90 MeV. It is suggested that the same universal distribution should also describe the subthreshold production of other hadrons like η and K. (author) 36 refs., 11 figs

  2. Complex dynamics of a stochastic discrete modified Leslie-Gower predator-prey model with Michaelis-Menten type prey harvesting

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Elhassanein

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper introduced a stochastic discretized version of the modified Leslie-Gower predator-prey model with Michaelis-Menten type prey harvesting. The dynamical behavior of the proposed model was investigated. The existence and stability of the equilibria of the skeleton were studied. Numerical simulations were employed to show the model's complex dynamics by means of the largest Lyapunov exponents, bifurcations, time series diagrams and phase portraits. The effects of noise intensity on its dynamics and the intermittency phenomenon were also discussed via simulation.

  3. Resolution VII International Conference Working Group on Birds of Prey of Northern Eurasia “Birds of Prey of Northern Eurasia: Problems and Adaptation Under Modern Conditions”

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Igor V. Karyakin

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available From 19 to 24 September, 2016 VII International Conference of the Working Group on Raptors of Northern Eurasia “Birds of prey of Northern Eurasia: problems and adaptation under modern conditions” was held on the basis of the Sochi National Park. Materials for the conference were presented by 198 ornithologists from Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Moldova, Turkmenistan, Austria, Great Britain, Hungary, Mongolia, Poland, Estonia and the USA, who published 148 articles in two collections “Birds of prey of Northern Eurasia” and “Palearctic Harriers”.

  4. Perch, Perca fluviatilis show a directional preference for, but do not increase attacks toward, prey in response to water-borne cortisol

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lindsay J. Henderson

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available In freshwater environments, chemosensory cues play an important role in predator-prey interactions. Prey use a variety of chemosensory cues to detect and avoid predators. However, whether predators use the chemical cues released by disturbed or stressed prey has received less attention. Here we tested the hypothesis that the disturbance cue cortisol, in conjunction with visual cues of prey, elevates predatory behavior. We presented predators (perch, Perca fluviatilis with three chemosensory choice tests and recorded their location, orientation, and aggressive behavior. We compared the responses of predators when provided with (i visual cues of prey only (two adjacent tanks containing sticklebacks; (ii visual and natural chemical cues of prey vs. visual cues only; and (iii visual cues of prey with cortisol vs. visual cues only. Perch spent a significantly higher proportion of time in proximity to prey, and orientated toward prey more, when presented with a cortisol stimulus plus visual cues, relative to presentations of visual and natural chemical cues of prey, or visual cues of prey only. There was a trend that perch directed a higher proportion of predatory behaviors (number of lunges toward sticklebacks when presented with a cortisol stimulus plus visual cues, relative to the other chemosensory conditions. But they did not show a significant increase in total predatory behavior in response to cortisol. Therefore, it is not clear whether water-borne cortisol, in conjunction with visual cues of prey, affects predatory behavior. Our results provide evidence that cortisol could be a source of public information about prey state and/or disturbance, but further work is required to confirm this.

  5. Prey switching behaviour in the planktonic copepod Acartia tonsa

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kiørboe, Thomas; Saiz, E.; Viitasalo, M.

    1996-01-01

    The copepod Acartia tonsa has 2 different prey encounter strategies. It can generate a feeding current to encounter and capture immobile prey (suspension feeding) or it can sink slowly and perceive motile prey by means of mechanoreceptors on the antennae (ambush feeding). We hypothesized that A....... tonsa adopts the feeding mode that generates the highest energy intake rate; i.e. that prey selection changes according to the relative concentrations of alternative prey (prey switching) and that the copepods spend disproportionately more time in the feeding mode that provides the greatest reward...... be captured by suspension feeding copepods. Finally, we demonstrate that turbulence favours the selection of ciliates as prey. We suggest that prey switching by copepods may provide survival windows for microzooplankters during blooms of net phytoplankton because predation pressure from the copepods...

  6. Models of prey capture in larval fish

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Drost, M.R.

    1986-01-01

    The food uptake of larval carp and pike is described from high speed movies with synchronous lateral and ventral views.

    During prey intake by larval fishes the velocities of the created suction flow are high relative to their own size: 0.3 m/s for carp larvae of 6

  7. Killer whale prey - Determining prey selection by southern resident killer whales (SRKW)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Prey selectivity by southern resident killer whales is being determined by analyses of fish scales and tissue from predation events and feces. Information on killer...

  8. SRKW summer prey - Prey species and stock specific consumption estimates for SRKW in their summer range

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Southern Resident Killer Whales (SRKW) are listed as a Distinct Population Segment under the Endangered Species Act. Data concerning their prey species and stock...

  9. Competition and Dispersal in Predator-Prey Waves

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Savill, N.J.; Hogeweg, P.

    1998-01-01

    Dispersing predators and prey can exhibit complex spatio-temporal wave-like patterns if the interactions between them cause oscillatory dynamics. We study the effect of these predator- prey density waves on the competition between prey populations and between predator popu- lations with different

  10. Predatory mites avoid ovipositing near counter-attacking prey

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Faraji, F.; Janssen, A.; Sabelis, M.W.

    2001-01-01

    Attacking prey is not without risk; predators may endure counterattackby the prey. Here, we study the oviposition behaviour of a predatory mite(Iphiseius degenerans) in relation to its prey, thewesternflower thrips (Frankliniella occidentalis). This thrips iscapable of killing the eggs of the

  11. The functional response to prey density in an acarine system

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fransz, H.G.

    1974-01-01

    Predacious mites are considered to be important natural enemies of phytophagous mites. Their efficiency in the natural control of prey populations depends on the relationships of the number of prey killed per predator per time unit and the oviposition rate on the one hand and prey density on the

  12. Turing-Hopf bifurcations in a predator-prey model with herd behavior, quadratic mortality and prey-taxis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Xia; Zhang, Tonghua; Meng, Xinzhu; Zhang, Tongqian

    2018-04-01

    In this paper, we propose a predator-prey model with herd behavior and prey-taxis. Then, we analyze the stability and bifurcation of the positive equilibrium of the model subject to the homogeneous Neumann boundary condition. By using an abstract bifurcation theory and taking prey-tactic sensitivity coefficient as the bifurcation parameter, we obtain a branch of stable nonconstant solutions bifurcating from the positive equilibrium. Our results show that prey-taxis can yield the occurrence of spatial patterns.

  13. Permanence of a Semi-Ratio-Dependent Predator-Prey System with Nonmonotonic Functional Response and Time Delay

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xuepeng Li

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Sufficient conditions for permanence of a semi-ratio-dependent predator-prey system with nonmonotonic functional response and time delay ̇1(=1([1(−11(1(−(−12(2(/(2+21(],  ̇2(=2([2(−21(2(/1(], are obtained, where 1( and 2( stand for the density of the prey and the predator, respectively, and ≠0 is a constant. (≥0 stands for the time delays due to negative feedback of the prey population.

  14. Superconductivity and spin fluctuations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Scalapino, D.J.

    1999-01-01

    The organizers of the Memorial Session for Herman Rietschel asked that the author review some of the history of the interplay of superconductivity and spin fluctuations. Initially, Berk and Schrieffer showed how paramagnon spin fluctuations could suppress superconductivity in nearly-ferromagnetic materials. Following this, Rietschel and various co-workers wrote a number of papers in which they investigated the role of spin fluctuations in reducing the Tc of various electron-phonon superconductors. Paramagnon spin fluctuations are also believed to provide the p-wave pairing mechanism responsible for the superfluid phases of 3 He. More recently, antiferromagnetic spin fluctuations have been proposed as the mechanism for d-wave pairing in the heavy-fermion superconductors and in some organic materials as well as possibly the high-Tc cuprates. Here the author will review some of this early history and discuss some of the things he has learned more recently from numerical simulations

  15. Responses to river inundation pressures control prey selection of riparian beetles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matt J O'Callaghan

    Full Text Available Riparian habitats are subjected to frequent inundation (flooding and are characterised by food webs that exhibit variability in aquatic/terrestrial subsidies across the ecotone. The strength of this subsidy in active riparian floodplains is thought to underpin local biodiversity. Terrestrial invertebrates dominate the fauna, exhibiting traits that allow exploitation of variable aquatic subsidies while reducing inundation pressures, leading to inter-species micro-spatial positioning. The effect these strategies have on prey selection is not known. This study hypothesised that plasticity in prey choice from either aquatic or terrestrial sources is an important trait linked to inundation tolerance and avoidance.We used hydrological, isotopic and habitat analyses to investigate the diet of riparian Coleoptera in relation to inundation risk and relative spatial positioning in the floodplain. The study examined patch scale and longitudinal changes in utilisation of the aquatic subsidy according to species traits. Prey sourced from terrestrial or emerging/stranded aquatic invertebrates varied in relation to traits for inundation avoidance or tolerance strategies. Traits that favoured rapid dispersal corresponded with highest proportions of aquatic prey, with behavioural traits further predicting uptake. Less able dispersers showed minimal use of aquatic subsidy and switched to a terrestrial diet under moderate inundation pressures. All trait groups showed a seasonal shift in diet towards terrestrial prey in the early spring. Prey selection became exaggerated towards aquatic prey in downstream samples.Our results suggest that partitioning of resources and habitat creates overlapping niches that increase the processing of external subsidies in riparian habitats. By demonstrating functional complexity, this work advances understanding of floodplain ecosystem processes and highlights the importance of hydrological variability. With an increasing interest

  16. Ultrasonic predator-prey interactions in water– convergent evolution with insects and bats in air?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria eWilson

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Toothed whales and bats have independently evolved biosonar systems to navigate and locate and catch prey. Such active sensing allows them to operate in darkness, but with the potential cost of warning prey by the emission of intense ultrasonic signals. At least six orders of nocturnal insects have independently evolved ears sensitive to ultrasound and exhibit evasive maneuvers when exposed to bat calls. Among aquatic prey on the other hand, the ability to detect and avoid ultrasound emitting predators seems to be limited to only one subfamily of Clupeidae: the Alosinae (shad and menhaden. These differences are likely rooted in the different physical properties of air and water where cuticular mechanoreceptors have been adapted to serve as ultrasound sensitive ears, whereas ultrasound detection in water have called for sensory cells mechanically connected to highly specialized gas volumes that can oscillate at high frequencies. In addition, there are most likely differences in the risk of predation between insects and fish from echolocating predators. The selection pressure among insects for evolving ultrasound sensitive ears is high, because essentially all nocturnal predation on flying insects stems from echolocating bats. In the interaction between toothed whales and their prey the selection pressure seems weaker, because toothed whales are by no means the only marine predators placing a selection pressure on their prey to evolve specific means to detect and avoid them.Toothed whales can generate extremely intense sound pressure levels, and it has been suggested that they may use these to debilitate prey. Recent experiments however, show that neither fish with swim bladder, nor squid are debilitated by such signals. This strongly suggests that the production of high amplitude ultrasonic clicks serve the function of improving the detection range of the toothed whale biosonar system rather than debilitation of prey.

  17. Are single odorous components of a predator sufficient to elicit defensive behaviors in prey species?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raimund eApfelbach

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available When exposed to the odor of a sympatric predator, prey animals typically display escape or defensive responses. These phenomena have been well-documented, especially in rodents, when exposed to the odor of a cat, ferret or fox. As a result of these experiments new discussions center on the following questions: 1 is a single volatile compound such as a major or a minor mixture constituent in urine or feces, emitted by the predator sufficient to cause defensive reactions in a potential prey species or 2 is a whole array of odors required to elicit a response and 3 will the relative size or escapability of the prey as compared to the predator influence responsiveness. Most predator-prey studies on this topic have been performed in the laboratory or under semi-natural conditions. Field studies could help to find answers to these questions. Australian mammals are completely naïve towards the introduced placental carnivores. That offers ideal opportunities to analyze in the field the responses of potential prey species to unknown predator odors. During the last decades researchers have accumulated an enormous amount of data exploring the effects of eutherian predator odors on native marsupial mammals. In this review, we will give a survey about the development of olfactory research, chemical signals and their influence on the behavior and - in some cases - physiology of prey species. In addition, we report on the effects of predator odor experiments performed under natural conditions in Australia. When studying all these literature we learned that data gained under controlled laboratory conditions elucidate the role of individual odors on brain structures and ultimately on a comparatively narrow range behaviors. In contrast to single odors odor arrays mimic much more the situation prey animals are confronted to in nature. Therefore, a broad range of methodology — from chemistry to ecology including anatomy, physiology and behavior — is needed to

  18. Changes in Alaskan soft-bottom prey communities along a gradient in sea otter predation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kvitek, R.G.; Oliver, J.S.; DeGange, A.R.; Anderson, B.S.

    1992-01-01

    Sea Otter (Enhydra lutris), well documented as "keystone" predators in rocky marine communities, were found to exert a strong influence on infaunal prey communities in soft-sediment habitats. Direct and indirect effects of sea otter predation on subtidal soft-bottom prey communities were evaluated along a temporal gradient of sea otter occupancy around the Kodiak Archipelago. The results indicate that Kodiak otters forage primarily on bivalve prey and dramatically reduce infaunal bivalve and green sea urchin (Strongylocentrotus droebachiensis) prey populations. Bivalve prey abundance, biomass, and size were inversely related to duration of sea otter occupancy. The relative conditions of shells discarded by otters in shallow ( 20 m) water at the same sites indicate that otters first exploited Saxidomus in shallow-water feeding areas, and later switched to Macoma spp. in deeper water. Otter-cracked shells of the deep-burrowing clam Tresus capax were rarely found, even at otter foraging sites where the clam accounted for the majority of available prey biomass, suggesting that it has a partial depth refuge from otter predation. The indirect effects of otter predation included substratum disturbance and the facilitation of sea star predation on infaunal prey. Sea stars, Pycnopodia helianthoides, were attracted to experimentally dug excavations as well as natural sea otter foraging pits, where the sea stars foraged on smaller size classes of infaunal bivalves than those eaten by otters. Otters also discard clam shells on the sediment surface and expose old, buried shells during excavation. Surface shells were found to provide attachment sites for large anemones and kelp. Our study shows that sea otters can affect soft-sediment communities, not only through predation, as in rocky habitats, but also through disturbance, and thus retain a high degree of influence in two very different habitat types.

  19. Management intensity and vegetation complexity affect web-building spiders and their prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diehl, Eva; Mader, Viktoria L; Wolters, Volkmar; Birkhofer, Klaus

    2013-10-01

    Agricultural management and vegetation complexity affect arthropod diversity and may alter trophic interactions between predators and their prey. Web-building spiders are abundant generalist predators and important natural enemies of pests. We analyzed how management intensity (tillage, cutting of the vegetation, grazing by cattle, and synthetic and organic inputs) and vegetation complexity (plant species richness, vegetation height, coverage, and density) affect rarefied richness and composition of web-building spiders and their prey with respect to prey availability and aphid predation in 12 habitats, ranging from an uncut fallow to a conventionally managed maize field. Spiders and prey from webs were collected manually and the potential prey were quantified using sticky traps. The species richness of web-building spiders and the order richness of prey increased with plant diversity and vegetation coverage. Prey order richness was lower at tilled compared to no-till sites. Hemipterans (primarily aphids) were overrepresented, while dipterans, hymenopterans, and thysanopterans were underrepresented in webs compared to sticky traps. The per spider capture efficiency for aphids was higher at tilled than at no-till sites and decreased with vegetation complexity. After accounting for local densities, 1.8 times more aphids were captured at uncut compared to cut sites. Our results emphasize the functional role of web-building spiders in aphid predation, but suggest negative effects of cutting or harvesting. We conclude that reduced management intensity and increased vegetation complexity help to conserve local invertebrate diversity, and that web-building spiders at sites under low management intensity (e.g., semi-natural habitats) contribute to aphid suppression at the landscape scale.

  20. Arthropod prey for riparian associated birds in headwater forests of the Oregon Coast Range

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagar, Joan C.; Li, Judith; Sobota, Janel; Jenkins, Stephanie

    2012-01-01

    Headwater riparian areas occupy a large proportion of the land base in Pacific Northwest forests, and thus are ecologically and economically important. Although a primary goal of management along small headwater streams is the protection of aquatic resources, streamside habitat also is important for many terrestrial wildlife species. However, mechanisms underlying the riparian associations of some terrestrial species have not been well studied, particularly for headwater drainages. We investigated the diets of and food availability for four bird species associated with riparian habitats in montane coastal forests of western Oregon, USA. We examined variation in the availability of arthropod prey as a function of distance from stream. Specifically, we tested the hypotheses that (1) emergent aquatic insects were a food source for insectivorous birds in headwater riparian areas, and (2) the abundances of aquatic and terrestrial arthropod prey did not differ between streamside and upland areas during the bird breeding season. We found that although adult aquatic insects were available for consumption throughout the study period, they represented a relatively small proportion of available prey abundance and biomass and were present in only 1% of the diet samples from only one of the four riparian-associated bird species. Nonetheless, arthropod prey, comprised primarily of insects of terrestrial origin, was more abundant in streamside than upland samples. We conclude that food resources for birds in headwater riparian areas are primarily associated with terrestrial vegetation, and that bird distributions along the gradient from streamside to upland may be related to variation in arthropod prey availability. Because distinct vegetation may distinguish riparian from upland habitats for riparian-associated birds and their terrestrial arthropod prey, we suggest that understory communities be considered when defining management zones for riparian habitat.

  1. Predictive modelling of habitat selection by marine predators with respect to the abundance and depth distribution of pelagic prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyd, Charlotte; Castillo, Ramiro; Hunt, George L; Punt, André E; VanBlaricom, Glenn R; Weimerskirch, Henri; Bertrand, Sophie

    2015-11-01

    importance of abundance and accessibility is essential for the design and evaluation of effective management responses to reduced prey availability for seabirds and other top predators in marine systems. © 2015 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2015 British Ecological Society.

  2. Piscivorous fish exhibit temperature-influenced binge feeding during an annual prey pulse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Furey, Nathan B; Hinch, Scott G; Mesa, Matthew G; Beauchamp, David A

    2016-09-01

    Understanding the limits of consumption is important for determining trophic influences on ecosystems and predator adaptations to inconsistent prey availability. Fishes have been observed to consume beyond what is sustainable (i.e. digested on a daily basis), but this phenomenon of hyperphagia (or binge-feeding) is largely overlooked. We expect hyperphagia to be a short-term (1-day) event that is facilitated by gut volume providing capacity to store consumed food during periods of high prey availability to be later digested. We define how temperature, body size and food availability influence the degree of binge-feeding by comparing field observations with laboratory experiments of bull trout (Salvelinus confluentus), a large freshwater piscivore that experiences highly variable prey pulses. We also simulated bull trout consumption and growth during salmon smolt outmigrations under two scenarios: 1) daily consumption being dependent upon bioenergetically sustainable rates and 2) daily consumption being dependent upon available gut volume (i.e. consumption is equal to gut volume when empty and otherwise 'topping off' based on sustainable digestion rates). One-day consumption by laboratory-held bull trout during the first day of feeding experiments after fasting exceeded bioenergetically sustainable rates by 12- to 87-fold at low temperatures (3 °C) and by  ˜1·3-fold at 20 °C. The degree of binge-feeding by bull trout in the field was slightly reduced but largely in agreement with laboratory estimates, especially when prey availability was extremely high [during a sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) smolt outmigration and at a counting fence where smolts are funnelled into high densities]. Consumption by bull trout at other settings were lower and more variable, but still regularly hyperphagic. Simulations demonstrated the ability to binge-feed increased cumulative consumption (16-32%) and cumulative growth (19-110%) relative to only feeding at

  3. Are all prey created equal? A review and synthesis of differential predation on prey in substandard condition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mesa, Matthew G.; Poe, Thomas P.; Gadomski, Dena M.; Petersen, James H.

    1994-01-01

    Our understanding of predator-prey interactions in fishes has been influenced largely by research assuming that the condition of the participants is normal. However, fish populations today often reside in anthropogenically altered environments and are subjected to many kinds of stressors, which may reduce their ecological performance by adversely affecting their morphology, physiology, or behaviour. One consequence is that either the predator or prey, or both, may be in a substandard condition at the time of an interaction. We reviewed the literature on predator-prey interactions in fishes where substandard prey were used as experimental groups. Although most of this research indicates that such prey are significantly more vulnerable to predation, prey condition has rarely been considered in ecological theory regarding predator-prey interactions. The causal mechanisms for increased vulnerability of substandard prey to predation include a failure to detect predators, lapses in decision-making, poor fast-start performance, inability to shoal effectively, and increased prey conspicuousness. Despite some problems associated with empirical predator-prey studies using substandard prey, their results can have theoretical and applied uses, such as in ecological modelling or justification of corrective measures to be implemented in the wild. There is a need for more corroborative field experimentation, a better understanding of the causal mechanisms behind differential predation, and increased incorporation of prey condition into the research of predator-prey modellers and theoreticians. If the concept of prey condition is considered in predator-prey interactions, our understanding of how such interactions influence the structure and dynamics of fish communities is likely to change, which should prove beneficial to aquatic ecosystems.

  4. Artificial night light alters nocturnal prey interception outcomes for morphologically variable spiders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suet Wai Yuen

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Artificial night light has the potential to significantly alter visually-dependent species interactions. However, examples of disruptions of species interactions through changes in light remain rare and how artificial night light may alter predator–prey relationships are particularly understudied. In this study, we examined whether artificial night light could impact prey attraction and interception in Nephila pilipes orb weaver spiders, conspicuous predators who make use of yellow color patterns to mimic floral resources and attract prey to their webs. We measured moth prey attraction and interception responses to treatments where we experimentally manipulated the color/contrast of spider individuals in the field (removed yellow markings and also set up light manipulations. We found that lit webs had lower rates of moth interception than unlit webs. Spider color, however, had no clear impact on moth interception or attraction rates in lit nor unlit webs. The results show that night light can reduce prey interception for spiders. Additionally, this study highlights how environmental and morphological variation can complicate simple predictions of ecological light pollution’s disruption of species interactions.

  5. Extinction and Permanence of a General Predator-Prey System with Impulsive Perturbations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xianning Liu

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available A general predator-prey system is studied in a scheme where there is periodic impulsive perturbations. This scheme has the potential to protect the predator from extinction but under some conditions may also serve to lead to extinction of the prey. Conditions for extinction and permanence are obtained via the comparison methods involving monotone theory of impulsive systems and multiple Liapunov functions, which establish explicit bounds on solutions. The existence of a positive periodic solution is also studied by the bifurcation theory. Application is given to a Lotka-Volterra predator-prey system with periodic impulsive immigration of the predator. It is shown that the results are quite different from the corresponding system without impulsive immigration, where extinction of the prey can never be achieved. The prey will be extinct or permanent independent of whether the system without impulsive effect immigration is permanent or not. The model and its results suggest an approach of pest control which proves more effective than the classical one.

  6. Prey-predator dynamics driven by the solar radiation - Part 1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sertorio, L.

    2000-01-01

    In this paper is studied a model ecosystem represented by two components: prey and predator. The predator feeds only on the prey, the prey, in turn, feeds on the solar radiation. In this scheme the two-species dynamics is no longer independent of the external physical conditions. Such independence was instead postulated in the Lotka-Volterra scheme. In this paper is considered the growth of the prey not unbounded (exponential), but logistic, where the saturation factor is governed by the available solar flux, more precisely by the percent of the solar flux that contains the photon frequencies which can drive the photosynthesis. In this way the solar flux represents the driving term of the dynamics, as it is expected in general for a realistic ecosystem. The system is asymptotically stable. The equilibrium values of the prey and predator numbers depend on several parameters. The system contains two nonlinear coupling terms and two coupling parameters. The dependence of the equilibrium point on the coupling parameters is studied in detail. According to this model, it can be defined a predator efficiency and a global solar efficiency. It is discussed the relationship between these two functions of the coupling parameters and the maximum value that the predator population can reach

  7. Ultimate predators: lionfish have evolved to circumvent prey risk assessment abilities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oona M Lönnstedt

    Full Text Available Invasive species cause catastrophic alterations to communities worldwide by changing the trophic balance within ecosystems. Ever since their introduction in the mid 1980's common red lionfish, Pterois volitans, are having dramatic impacts on the Caribbean ecosystem by displacing native species and disrupting food webs. Introduced lionfish capture prey at extraordinary rates, altering the composition of benthic communities. Here we demonstrate that the extraordinary success of the introduced lionfish lies in its capacity to circumvent prey risk assessment abilities as it is virtually undetectable by prey species in its native range. While experienced prey damselfish, Chromis viridis, respond with typical antipredator behaviours when exposed to a common predatory rock cod (Cephalopholis microprion they fail to visibly react to either the scent or visual presentation of the red lionfish, and responded only to the scent (not the visual cue of a lionfish of a different genus, Dendrochirus zebra. Experienced prey also had much higher survival when exposed to the two non-invasive predators compared to P. volitans. The cryptic nature of the red lionfish has enabled it to be destructive as a predator and a highly successful invasive species.

  8. Energetic conditions promoting top-down control of prey by predators.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristin N Marshall

    Full Text Available Humans remove large amounts of biomass from natural ecosystems, and large bodied high trophic level animals are especially sensitive and vulnerable to exploitation. The effects of removing top-predators on food webs are often difficult to predict because of limited information on species interaction strengths. Here we used a three species predator-prey model to explore relationships between energetic properties of trophodynamic linkages and interaction strengths to provide heuristic rules that indicate observable energetic conditions that are most likely to lead to stable and strong top-down control of prey by predator species. We found that strong top-down interaction strengths resulted from low levels of energy flow from prey to predators. Strong interactions are more stable when they are a consequence of low per capita predation and when predators are subsidized by recruitment. Diet composition also affects stability, but the relationship depends on the form of the functional response. Our results imply that for generalist satiating predators, strong top-down control on prey is most likely for prey items that occupy a small portion of the diet and when density dependent recruitment is moderately high.

  9. Foraging behavior and prey interactions by a guild of predators on various lifestages of Bemisia tabaci

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James R. Hagler

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available The sweetpotato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius is fed on by a wide variety of generalist predators, but there is little information on these predator-prey interactions. A laboratory investigation was conducted to quantify the foraging behavior of the adults of five common whitefly predators presented with a surfeit of whitefly eggs, nymphs, and adults. The beetles, Hippodamia convergens Guérin-Méneville and Collops vittatus (Say fed mostly on whitefly eggs, but readily and rapidly preyed on all of the whitefly lifestages. The true bugs, Geocoris punctipes (Say and Orius tristicolor (Say preyed almost exclusively on adult whiteflies, while Lygus hesperus Knight preyed almost exclusively on nymphs. The true bugs had much longer prey handling times than the beetles and spent much more of their time feeding (35-42% than the beetles (6-7%. These results indicate that generalist predators vary significantly in their interaction with this host, and that foraging behavior should be considered during development of a predator-based biological control program for B. tabaci.

  10. Hadronic Correlations and Fluctuations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Koch, Volker

    2008-10-09

    We will provide a review of some of the physics which can be addressed by studying fluctuations and correlations in heavy ion collisions. We will discuss Lattice QCD results on fluctuations and correlations and will put them into context with observables which have been measured in heavy-ion collisions. Special attention will be given to the QCD critical point and the first order co-existence region, and we will discuss how the measurement of fluctuations and correlations can help in an experimental search for non-trivial structures in the QCD phase diagram.

  11. Quantum fluctuations and inflation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bardeen, J.M.; Bublik, G.J.

    1986-05-01

    We study the effect of quantum fluctuations on the roll-down rate of the inflation field in a semiclassical approximation; this is done by treating the inflation field as a classical random field. The quantum fluctuations are simulated by a noise term in the equation of motion. We consider two different inflationary scenarios (new and chaotic inflation) and find that the roll-down rate of the median value of the inflation field is increased by the quantum fluctuations. Non-linear effects may become important in the later stages of the inflationary regime. 8 refs., 2 figs

  12. Quantum fluctuations and inflation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bardeen, J.M.; Bublik, G.J.

    1987-01-01

    The authors study the effect of quantum fluctuations on the roll-down rate of the inflation field in a semiclassical approximation; this is done by treating the inflation field as a classical random field. The quantum fluctuations are simulated by a noise term in the equation of motion. Two different inflationary scenarios (new and chaotic inflation) are considered and it is found that the roll-down rate of the median value of the inflation field is increased by the quantum fluctuations. Non-linear effects may become important in the later stages of the inflationary regime. (author)

  13. Neuromuscular control of prey capture in frogs.

    OpenAIRE

    Nishikawa, K C

    1999-01-01

    While retaining a feeding apparatus that is surprisingly conservative morphologically, frogs as a group exhibit great variability in the biomechanics of tongue protraction during prey capture, which in turn is related to differences in neuromuscular control. In this paper, I address the following three questions. (1) How do frog tongues differ biomechanically? (2) What anatomical and physiological differences are responsible? (3) How is biomechanics related to mechanisms of neuromuscular cont...

  14. Molecular prey identification in Central European piscivores

    OpenAIRE

    Thalinger, Bettina; Oehm, Johannes; Mayr, Hannes; Obwexer, Armin; Zeisler, Christiane; Traugott, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Diet analysis is an important aspect when investigating the ecology of fish?eating animals and essential for assessing their functional role in food webs across aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. The identification of fish remains in dietary samples, however, can be time?consuming and unsatisfying using conventional morphological analysis of prey remains. Here, we present a two?step multiplex PCR system, comprised of six assays, allowing for rapid, sensitive and specific detection o...

  15. Assessment of Competition between Fisheries and Steller Sea Lions in Alaska Based on Estimated Prey Biomass, Fisheries Removals and Predator Foraging Behaviour.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tabitha C Y Hui

    Full Text Available A leading hypothesis to explain the dramatic decline of Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus in western Alaska during the latter part of the 20th century is a change in prey availability due to commercial fisheries. We tested this hypothesis by exploring the relationships between sea lion population trends, fishery catches, and the prey biomass accessible to sea lions around 33 rookeries between 2000 and 2008. We focused on three commercially important species that have dominated the sea lion diet during the population decline: walleye pollock, Pacific cod and Atka mackerel. We estimated available prey biomass by removing fishery catches from predicted prey biomass distributions in the Aleutian Islands, Bering Sea and Gulf of Alaska; and modelled the likelihood of sea lions foraging at different distances from rookeries (accessibility using satellite telemetry locations of tracked animals. We combined this accessibility model with the prey distributions to estimate the prey biomass accessible to sea lions by rookery. For each rookery, we compared sea lion population change to accessible prey biomass. Of 304 comparisons, we found 3 statistically significant relationships, all suggesting that sea lion populations increased with increasing prey accessibility. Given that the majority of comparisons showed no significant effect, it seems unlikely that the availability of pollock, cod or Atka mackerel was limiting sea lion populations in the 2000s.

  16. Infomechanical specializations for prey capture in knifefish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maciver, Malcolm; Patankar, Neelesh; Curet, Oscar; Shirgaonkar, Anup

    2007-11-01

    How does an animal's mechanics and its information acquisition system work together to solve crucial behavioral tasks? We examine this question for the black ghost weakly electric knifefish (Apteronotus albifrons), which is a leading model system for the study of sensory processing in vertebrates. These animals hunt at night by detecting perturbations of a self-generated electric field caused by prey. While the fish searches for prey, it pitches at 30 . Fully resolved Navier-Stokes simulations of their swimming, which occurs through undulations of a long ribbon-like fin along the bottom edge of the body, indicates that this configuration enables maximal thrust while minimizing pitch moment. However, pitching the body also increases drag. Our analysis of the sensory volume for detection of prey shows this volume to be similar to a cylinder around the body. Thus, pitching the body enables a greater swept volume of scanned fluid. Examining the mechanical and information acquisition demands on the animal in this task gives insight into how these sometimes conflicting demands are resolved.

  17. Prey-predator dynamics with prey refuge providing additional food to predator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ghosh, Joydev; Sahoo, Banshidhar; Poria, Swarup

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: • The effects of interplay between prey refugia and additional food are reported. • Hopf bifurcation conditions are derived analytically. • Existence of unique limit cycle is shown analytically. • Predator extinction may be possible at very high prey refuge ecological systems. - Abstract: The impacts of additional food for predator on the dynamics of a prey-predator model with prey refuge are investigated. The equilibrium points and their stability behaviours are determined. Hopf bifurcation conditions are derived analytically. Most significantly, existence conditions for unique stable limit cycle in the phase plane are shown analytically. The analytical results are in well agreement with the numerical simulation results. Effects of variation of refuge level as well as the variation of quality and quantity of additional food on the dynamics are reported with the help of bifurcation diagrams. It is found that high quality and high quantity of additional food supports oscillatory coexistence of species. It is observed that predator extinction possibility in high prey refuge ecological systems may be removed by supplying additional food to predator population. The reported theoretical results may be useful to conservation biologist for species conservation in real world ecological systems.

  18. Prey preferences and prey acceptance in juvenile Brown Treesnakes (Boiga irregularis)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lardner, Bjorn; Savidge, Julie A.; Rodda, Gordon H.; Reed, Robert N.

    2009-01-01

    On the Pacific island of Guam, control of the invasive Brown Treesnake (Boiga irregularis) relies largely on methods that use mice as bait. Juvenile B. irregularis feed primarily on lizards and their eggs, but little is known about their prey preference. We conducted an experiment to investigate preferences for, and acceptance of, dead geckos, skinks, and neonatal mice, in juvenile B. irregularis ranging from 290 mm to ca. 700 mm snout-vent length (SVL). Snakes of all sizes showed a preference for geckos over skinks and neonatal mice. Geckos were the first prey chosen in 87% of 224 initial trials (56 snakes subjected to four trials each; 33% would be expected from a random choice). The smallest snakes had the most pronounced preference. Although many of the snakes accepted neonatal mice and/or skinks, some snakes of all sizes were reluctant to feed on anything but geckos, especially when well fed. We also addressed the hypothesis that repeated encounters with a particular prey type increase a snake's preference for that prey. Our study does not support this hypothesis. Our results suggest that control methods relying solely on rodent bait may be inefficient for targeting snakes < 700 mm SVL and that individual heterogeneity in prey preference may cause a significant part of this juvenile cohort to be completely refractory to capture with rodent bait, even if the bait is dead and small enough to be readily swallowed.

  19. Fluorescence fluctuation spectroscopy (FFS)

    CERN Document Server

    Tetin, Sergey

    2012-01-01

    This new volume of Methods in Enzymology continues the legacy of this premier serial with quality chapters authored by leaders in the field. This volume covers fluorescence fluctuation spectroscopy and includes chapters on such topics as Förster resonance energy transfer (fret) with fluctuation algorithms, protein corona on nanoparticles by FCS, and FFS approaches to the study of receptors in live cells. Continues the legacy of this premier serial with quality chapters authored by leaders in the field Covers fluorescence fluctuation spectroscopy Contains chapters on such topics as Förster resonance energy transfer (fret) with fluctuation algorithms, protein corona on nanoparticles by FCS, and FFS approaches to the study of receptors in live cells.

  20. Fully Quantum Fluctuation Theorems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Åberg, Johan

    2018-02-01

    Systems that are driven out of thermal equilibrium typically dissipate random quantities of energy on microscopic scales. Crooks fluctuation theorem relates the distribution of these random work costs to the corresponding distribution for the reverse process. By an analysis that explicitly incorporates the energy reservoir that donates the energy and the control system that implements the dynamic, we obtain a quantum generalization of Crooks theorem that not only includes the energy changes in the reservoir but also the full description of its evolution, including coherences. Moreover, this approach opens up the possibility for generalizations of the concept of fluctuation relations. Here, we introduce "conditional" fluctuation relations that are applicable to nonequilibrium systems, as well as approximate fluctuation relations that allow for the analysis of autonomous evolution generated by global time-independent Hamiltonians. We furthermore extend these notions to Markovian master equations, implicitly modeling the influence of the heat bath.

  1. Bats without borders: Predators learn novel prey cues from other predatory species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patriquin, Krista J; Kohles, Jenna E; Page, Rachel A; Ratcliffe, John M

    2018-03-01

    Learning from others allows individuals to adapt rapidly to environmental change. Although conspecifics tend to be reliable models, heterospecifics with similar resource requirements may be suitable surrogates when conspecifics are few or unfamiliar with recent changes in resource availability. We tested whether Trachops cirrhosus , a gleaning bat that localizes prey using their mating calls, can learn about novel prey from conspecifics and the sympatric bat Lophostoma silvicolum. Specifically, we compared the rate for naïve T. cirrhosus to learn an unfamiliar tone from either a trained conspecific or heterospecific alone through trial and error or through social facilitation. T. cirrhosus learned this novel cue from L. silvicolum as quickly as from conspecifics. This is the first demonstration of social learning of a novel acoustic cue in bats and suggests that heterospecific learning may occur in nature. We propose that auditory-based social learning may help bats learn about unfamiliar prey and facilitate their adaptive radiation.

  2. Spotted hyaenas Crocuta crocuta prey on new-born elephant calves in Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julia Salnicki

    2001-07-01

    Full Text Available Spotted hyaena Crocuta crocuta are known to be opportunists and to have a varied diet including mammals, reptiles and birds. Prey most often hunted are medium sized ungulates but spotted hyaenas will on occasion take larger species such as giraffe Giraffa camelopardalis and zebra Equus burchellii. They are also known to hunt whichever species are most abundant and will vary their prey seasonally. In this study spotted hyaenas were observed to take an unusual prey species in the form of elephant calves (Loxodonta africana. On a number of occasions hyaenas were observed feeding on or killing newborn and very young elephant calves. These observations were made whilst the authors were conducting research on spotted hyaena ecology in the woodlands of Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe and were made during the dry season between September and November 1999.

  3. The interplay among prey preference, nutrient enrichment and stability in an omnivory system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    LDB. Faria

    Full Text Available Food webs usually display an intricate mix of trophic interactions where multiple prey are common. In this context omnivory has been the subject of intensive analysis regarding food web stability and structure. In a three species omnivory setting it is shown that the modeling of prey preference by the top predator may exert a strong influence on the short as well as on the long term dynamics of the respective food web. Clearly, this has implications concerning the stability and the structure of omnivory systems under disturbances such as nutrient enrichment.

  4. Tigers and Their Prey in Bukit Rimbang Bukit Baling: Abundance Baseline for Effective Wildlife Reserve Management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Febri Anggriawan Widodo

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Managing the critically endangered Sumatran tiger (Panthera tigris sumatrae needs accurate information on its abundance and availability of prey at the landscape level. Bukit Rimbang Bukit Baling Wildlife Reserve in central Sumatra represents an important area for tigers at local, regional and global levels. The area has been recognized as a long-term priority Tiger Conservation Landscape. Solid baseline information on tigers and prey is fundamentally needed for the management. The objective of this study was to produce robust estimate of tiger density and prey a vailability in the reserve. We used camera traps to systematically collecting photographic samples of tigers and prey using Spatial Capture Recapture (SCR framework. We estimated density for tigers and calculated trap success rate (TSR; independent pictures/100 trap nights for main prey species. Three blocks in the reserve were sampled from 2012 to 2015 accumulating a total of 8,125 effective trap nights. We captured 14 tiger individuals including three cubs. We documented the highest density of tigers (individuals/100 km2 in southern sampling block (based on traditional capture recapture (TCR : 1.52 ± SE 0.55; based on Maximum Likelihood (ML SCR:0.51 ± SE 0.22 and the lowest in northeastern sampling block (TCR: 0.77 ±SE 0.39; ML SCR: 0.19 ± SE 0.16. The highest TSR of main prey (large ungulates and primates was in northeastern block (35.01 ± SD 8.67 and the lowest was in southern block (12.42 ± SD 2.91. The highest level of disturbance, as indicated by TSR of people, was in northeastern sampling block (5.45 ± SD 5.64 and the lowest in southern (1.26 ± SD 2.41. The results suggested that human disturbance strongly determine the density of tigers in the area, more than prey availability. To recover tigers, suggested strategies include controlling human disturbance and poaching to the lowest possible level in addition to maintaining main prey availability.

  5. Pattern Formation in Predator-Prey Model with Delay and Cross Diffusion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xinze Lian

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available We consider the effect of time delay and cross diffusion on the dynamics of a modified Leslie-Gower predator-prey model incorporating a prey refuge. Based on the stability analysis, we demonstrate that delayed feedback may generate Hopf and Turing instability under some conditions, resulting in spatial patterns. One of the most interesting findings is that the model exhibits complex pattern replication: the model dynamics exhibits a delay and diffusion controlled formation growth not only to spots, stripes, and holes, but also to spiral pattern self-replication. The results indicate that time delay and cross diffusion play important roles in pattern formation.

  6. Spatiotemporal heterogeneity in prey abundance and vulnerability shapes the foraging tactics of an omnivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rayl, Nathaniel D; Bastille-Rousseau, Guillaume; Organ, John F; Mumma, Matthew A; Mahoney, Shane P; Soulliere, Colleen E; Lewis, Keith P; Otto, Robert D; Murray, Dennis L; Waits, Lisette P; Fuller, Todd K

    2018-05-01

    Prey abundance and prey vulnerability vary across space and time, but we know little about how they mediate predator-prey interactions and predator foraging tactics. To evaluate the interplay between prey abundance, prey vulnerability and predator space use, we examined patterns of black bear (Ursus americanus) predation of caribou (Rangifer tarandus) neonates in Newfoundland, Canada using data from 317 collared individuals (9 bears, 34 adult female caribou, 274 caribou calves). During the caribou calving season, we predicted that landscape features would influence calf vulnerability to bear predation, and that bears would actively hunt calves by selecting areas associated with increased calf vulnerability. Further, we hypothesized that bears would dynamically adjust their foraging tactics in response to spatiotemporal changes in calf abundance and vulnerability (collectively, calf availability). Accordingly, we expected bears to actively hunt calves when they were most abundant and vulnerable, but switch to foraging on other resources as calf availability declined. As predicted, landscape heterogeneity influenced risk of mortality, and bears displayed the strongest selection for areas where they were most likely to kill calves, which suggested they were actively hunting caribou. Initially, the per-capita rate at which bears killed calves followed a type-I functional response, but as the calving season progressed and calf vulnerability declined, kill rates dissociated from calf abundance. In support of our hypothesis, bears adjusted their foraging tactics when they were less efficient at catching calves, highlighting the influence that predation phenology may have on predator space use. Contrary to our expectations, however, bears appeared to continue to hunt caribou as calf availability declined, but switched from a tactic of selecting areas of increased calf vulnerability to a tactic that maximized encounter rates with calves. Our results reveal that generalist

  7. Spatiotemporal heterogeneity in prey abundance and vulnerability shapes the foraging tactics of an omnivore

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rayl, Nathaniel; Bastille-Rousseau, Guillaume; Organ, John F.; Mumma, Matthew; Mahoney, Shane P.; Soulliere, Colleen; Lewis, Keith; Otto, Robert; Murray, Dennis; Waits, Lisette; Fuller, Todd

    2018-01-01

    Prey abundance and prey vulnerability vary across space and time, but we know little about how they mediate predator–prey interactions and predator foraging tactics. To evaluate the interplay between prey abundance, prey vulnerability and predator space use, we examined patterns of black bear (Ursus americanus) predation of caribou (Rangifer tarandus) neonates in Newfoundland, Canada using data from 317 collared individuals (9 bears, 34 adult female caribou, 274 caribou calves).During the caribou calving season, we predicted that landscape features would influence calf vulnerability to bear predation, and that bears would actively hunt calves by selecting areas associated with increased calf vulnerability. Further, we hypothesized that bears would dynamically adjust their foraging tactics in response to spatiotemporal changes in calf abundance and vulnerability (collectively, calf availability). Accordingly, we expected bears to actively hunt calves when they were most abundant and vulnerable, but switch to foraging on other resources as calf availability declined.As predicted, landscape heterogeneity influenced risk of mortality, and bears displayed the strongest selection for areas where they were most likely to kill calves, which suggested they were actively hunting caribou. Initially, the per‐capita rate at which bears killed calves followed a type‐I functional response, but as the calving season progressed and calf vulnerability declined, kill rates dissociated from calf abundance. In support of our hypothesis, bears adjusted their foraging tactics when they were less efficient at catching calves, highlighting the influence that predation phenology may have on predator space use. Contrary to our expectations, however, bears appeared to continue to hunt caribou as calf availability declined, but switched from a tactic of selecting areas of increased calf vulnerability to a tactic that maximized encounter rates with calves.Our results reveal that

  8. Effects of Demographic Noise on the Synchronization of a Metapopulation in a Fluctuating Environment

    KAUST Repository

    Lai, Yi Ming

    2011-09-08

    We use the theory of noise-induced phase synchronization to analyze the effects of demographic noise on the synchronization of a metapopulation of predator-prey systems within a fluctuating environment (Moran effect). Treating each local predator-prey population as a stochastic urn model, we derive a Langevin equation for the stochastic dynamics of the metapopulation. Assuming each local population acts as a limit cycle oscillator in the deterministic limit, we use phase reduction and averaging methods to derive the steady-state probability density for pairwise phase differences between oscillators, which is then used to determine the degree of synchronization of the metapopulation. © 2011 American Physical Society.

  9. Group-specific multiplex PCR detection systems for the identification of flying insect prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela Sint

    Full Text Available The applicability of species-specific primers to study feeding interactions is restricted to those ecosystems where the targeted prey species occur. Therefore, group-specific primer pairs, targeting higher taxonomic levels, are often desired to investigate interactions in a range of habitats that do not share the same species but the same groups of prey. Such primers are also valuable to study the diet of generalist predators when next generation sequencing approaches cannot be applied beneficially. Moreover, due to the large range of prey consumed by generalists, it is impossible to investigate the breadth of their diet with species-specific primers, even if multiplexing them. However, only few group-specific primers are available to date and important groups of prey such as flying insects have rarely been targeted. Our aim was to fill this gap and develop group-specific primers suitable to detect and identify the DNA of common taxa of flying insects. The primers were combined in two multiplex PCR systems, which allow a time- and cost-effective screening of samples for DNA of the dipteran subsection Calyptratae (including Anthomyiidae, Calliphoridae, Muscidae, other common dipteran families (Phoridae, Syrphidae, Bibionidae, Chironomidae, Sciaridae, Tipulidae, three orders of flying insects (Hymenoptera, Lepidoptera, Plecoptera and coniferous aphids within the genus Cinara. The two PCR assays were highly specific and sensitive and their suitability to detect prey was confirmed by testing field-collected dietary samples from arthropods and vertebrates. The PCR assays presented here allow targeting prey at higher taxonomic levels such as family or order and therefore improve our ability to assess (trophic interactions with flying insects in terrestrial and aquatic habitats.

  10. Predators and resources influence phosphorus transfer along an invertebrate food web through changes in prey behaviour.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edoardo Calizza

    Full Text Available Predators play a fundamental role in prey trophic behaviour, with indirect consequences for species coexistence and ecosystem functioning. Resource quality and availability also influence prey trophic behaviour, with potential effects on predator-prey dynamics. Although many studies have addressed these topics, little attention has been paid to the combined effects of predators and resources on prey species coexistence and nutrient transfer along food chains, especially in detritus-based systems. To determine the influence of predators and resource quality on the movement and P uptake of detritivores, we carried out a field experiment on the River Kelvin (Scotland using (32P to test the hypothesis of reduced prey vagility among resource patches as a strategy to avoid predation. Thirty leaf sacks containing alder leaves and two detritivore prey populations (Asellus aquaticus and Lymnaea peregra were placed in cages, half of them with two predator species (Dendrocoelum lacteum and Erpobdella octoculata and the other half without predators. Five alder leaf bags, each individually inoculated with a different fungus strain to simulate a patchy habitat, were placed inside each leaf sack. One bag in each sack was labelled with (32P, in order to assess the proportion of detritivores using it as food and thus their movement among the five resource patches. Three replicates for each labelled fungus and each predation treatment (i.e. with and without predators were left on the riverbed for 7 days. The presence of predators had negligible effects on the number of detritivores in the leaf bags, but it did reduce the proportion of (32P-labelled detritivores and their P uptake. The most strongly affected species was A. aquaticus, whose vagility, trophic overlap with L. peregra and P uptake were all reduced. The results confirm the importance of bottom-up and top-down forces acting simultaneously to regulate nutrient transfer along food chains in patchy

  11. Qualitative analysis on a cubic predator-prey system with diffusion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qunyi Bie

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we study a cubic predator-prey model with diffusion. We first establish the global stability of the trivial and nontrivial constant steady states for the reaction diffusion system, and then prove the existence and non-existence results concerning non-constant positive stationary solutions by using topological argument and the energy method, respectively.

  12. Spatial distribution of lion kills determined by the water dependency of prey species

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boer, de W.F.; Vis, M.J.P.; Knegt, de H.J.; Rowles, C.; Kohi, E.; Langevelde, van F.; Peel, M.J.S.; Pretorius, Y.; Skidmore, A.K.; Slotow, R.; Wieren, van S.E.; Prins, H.H.T.

    2010-01-01

    Predation risk from lions (Panthera leo) has been linked to habitat characteristics and availability and traits of prey. We separated the effects of vegetation density and the presence of drinking water by analyzing locations of lion kills in relation to rivers with dense vegetation, which offer

  13. Characterizing a novel predator–prey relationship between native Diplonychus esakii (Heteroptera: Belostomatidae and invasive Gambusia affinis (Teleostei: Poeciliidae in central China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xu Ouyang

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract A considerable body of the literature considers the potential impact of exotic predators on native prey organisms, while comparatively, few studies have asked whether and how native predators include novel prey types into their diet spectrum. Here, we asked whether the native aquatic heteropteran Diplonychus esakii preys on the highly invasive western mosquitofish (Gambusia affinis, which has been introduced to southern China and threatens native fish species through competition and predation on their fry. We conducted 48-h prey choice experiments under semi-natural conditions. In a ‘no-choice’ experiment (one predator and one potential prey; n = 200, we found the heteropterans to prey more on large-bodied fish, a pattern that was also described for other belostomatids, while prey sex had no effect on capture rates. Moreover, large-bodied heteropterans caught more fish than small-bodied individuals. However, overall capture rates in our study were low (11.5–30% compared to studies on other belostomatids, which explains why subsequent binary prey choice experiments using one predator and two prey—either large and small females or male and female (with smaller sample sizes of n = 20 and 30, respectively—did not confirm the results of our first experiment. Our study exemplifies how a pattern of body size-dependent predation can arise in a novel (not coevolved predator–prey interaction. We tentatively argue that the observed pattern could be driven by intrinsic features of the predator, namely, altered prey preferences with increasing age coupled with a general preference for large-bodied prey, or changing nutritional needs at different developmental stages.

  14. Effects of allochthonous inputs in the control of infectious disease of prey

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sahoo, Banshidhar; Poria, Swarup

    2015-01-01

    Highlights: •Infected predator–prey model with allochthonous inputs is proposed. •Stability and persistence conditions are derived. •Bifurcation is determined with respect to allochthonous inputs. •Results show that system can not be disease free without allochthonous inputs. •Hopf and its continuation bifurcation is analysed numerically. -- Abstract: Allochthonous inputs are important sources of productivity in many food webs and their influences on food chain model demand further investigations. In this paper, assuming the existence of allochthonous inputs for intermediate predator, a food chain model is formulated with disease in the prey. The stability and persistence conditions of the equilibrium points are determined. Extinction criterion for infected prey population is obtained. It is shown that suitable amount of allochthonous inputs to intermediate predator can control infectious disease of prey population, provided initial intermediate predator population is above a critical value. This critical intermediate population size increases monotonically with the increase of infection rate. It is also shown that control of infectious disease of prey is possible in some cases of seasonally varying contact rate. Dynamical behaviours of the model are investigated numerically through one and two parameter bifurcation analysis using MATCONT 2.5.1 package. The occurrence of Hopf and its continuation curves are noted with the variation of infection rate and allochthonous food availability. The continuation curves of limit point cycle and Neimark Sacker bifurcation are drawn by varying the rate of infection and allochthonous inputs. This study introduces a novel natural non-toxic method for controlling infectious disease of prey in a food chain model

  15. Molecular diagnostics reveal spiders that exploit prey vibrational signals used in sexual communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Virant-Doberlet, Meta; King, R Andrew; Polajnar, Jernej; Symondson, William O C

    2011-05-01

    Vibrational signalling is a widespread form of animal communication and, in the form of sexual communication, has been generally regarded as inherently short-range and a private communication channel, free from eavesdropping by generalist predators. A combination of fieldwork and laboratory experiments was used to test the hypothesis that predators can intercept and exploit such signals. First, we developed and characterized PCR primers specific for leafhoppers of the genus Aphrodes and specifically for the species Aphrodes makarovi. Spiders were collected from sites where leafhoppers were present and screened with these primers to establish which spider species were significant predators of this species during the mating period of these leafhoppers. Analysis using PCR of the gut contents of tangle-web spiders, Enoplognatha ovata (Theridiidae), showed that they consume leafhoppers in the field at a greater rate when signalling adults were present than when nymphs were dominant, suggesting that the spiders were using these vibrations signals to find their prey. Playback and microcosm experiments then showed that E. ovata can use the vibrational signals of male leafhoppers as a cue during foraging and, as a result, killed significantly more male than female A. makarovi. Our results show, for the first time, that arthropod predators can exploit prey vibrational communication to obtain information about prey availability and use this information to locate and capture prey. This may be a widespread mechanism for prey location, one that is likely to be a major unrecognized driver of evolution in both predators and prey. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  16. Predator-prey dynamics driven by feedback between functionally diverse trophic levels.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katrin Tirok

    Full Text Available Neglecting the naturally existing functional diversity of communities and the resulting potential to respond to altered conditions may strongly reduce the realism and predictive power of ecological models. We therefore propose and study a predator-prey model that describes mutual feedback via species shifts in both predator and prey, using a dynamic trait approach. Species compositions of the two trophic levels were described by mean functional traits--prey edibility and predator food-selectivity--and functional diversities by the variances. Altered edibility triggered shifts in food-selectivity so that consumers continuously respond to the present prey composition, and vice versa. This trait-mediated feedback mechanism resulted in a complex dynamic behavior with ongoing oscillations in the mean trait values, reflecting continuous reorganization of the trophic levels. The feedback was only possible if sufficient functional diversity was present in both trophic levels. Functional diversity was internally maintained on the prey level as no niche existed in our system, which was ideal under any composition of the predator level due to the trade-offs between edibility, growth and carrying capacity. The predators were only subject to one trade-off between food-selectivity and grazing ability and in the absence of immigration, one predator type became abundant, i.e., functional diversity declined to zero. In the lack of functional diversity the system showed the same dynamics as conventional models of predator-prey interactions ignoring the potential for shifts in species composition. This way, our study identified the crucial role of trade-offs and their shape in physiological and ecological traits for preserving diversity.

  17. Molecular prey identification in Central European piscivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thalinger, Bettina; Oehm, Johannes; Mayr, Hannes; Obwexer, Armin; Zeisler, Christiane; Traugott, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Diet analysis is an important aspect when investigating the ecology of fish-eating animals and essential for assessing their functional role in food webs across aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. The identification of fish remains in dietary samples, however, can be time-consuming and unsatisfying using conventional morphological analysis of prey remains. Here, we present a two-step multiplex PCR system, comprised of six assays, allowing for rapid, sensitive and specific detection of fish DNA in dietary samples. This approach encompasses 78 fish and lamprey species native to Central European freshwaters and enables the identification of 31 species, six genera, two families, two orders and two fish family clusters. All targeted taxa were successfully amplified from 25 template molecules, and each assay was specific when tested against a wide range of invertebrates and vertebrates inhabiting aquatic environments. The applicability of the multiplex PCR system was evaluated in a feeding trial, wherein it outperformed morphological prey analysis regarding species-specific prey identification in faeces of Eurasian otters. Additionally, a wide spectrum of fish species was detected in field-collected faecal samples and regurgitated pellets of Common Kingfishers and Great Cormorants, demonstrating the broad applicability of the approach. In conclusion, this multiplex PCR system provides an efficient, easy to use and cost-effective tool for assessing the trophic ecology of piscivores in Central Europe. Furthermore, the multiplex PCRs and the primers described therein will be applicable wherever DNA of the targeted fish species needs to be detected at high sensitivity and specificity. © 2015 The Authors. Molecular Ecology Resources Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. Limit Cycles in Predator-Prey Models

    OpenAIRE

    Puchuri Medina, Liliana

    2017-01-01

    The classic Lotka-Volterra model belongs to a family of differential equations known as “Generalized Lotka-Volterra”, which is part of a classification of four models of quadratic fields with center. These models have been studied to address the Hilbert infinitesimal problem, which consists in determine the number of limit cycles of a perturbed hamiltonian system with center. In this work, we first present an alternative proof of the existence of centers in Lotka-Volterra predator-prey models...

  19. Assassin bug uses aggressive mimicry to lure spider prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wignall, Anne E; Taylor, Phillip W

    2011-05-07

    Assassin bugs (Stenolemus bituberus) hunt web-building spiders by invading the web and plucking the silk to generate vibrations that lure the resident spider into striking range. To test whether vibrations generated by bugs aggressively mimic the vibrations generated by insect prey, we compared the responses of spiders to bugs with how they responded to prey, courting male spiders and leaves falling into the web. We also analysed the associated vibrations. Similar spider orientation and approach behaviours were observed in response to vibrations from bugs and prey, whereas different behaviours were observed in response to vibrations from male spiders and leaves. Peak frequency and duration of vibrations generated by bugs were similar to those generated by prey and courting males. Further, vibrations from bugs had a temporal structure and amplitude that were similar to vibrations generated by leg and body movements of prey and distinctly different to vibrations from courting males or leaves, or prey beating their wings. To be an effective predator, bugs do not need to mimic the full range of prey vibrations. Instead bugs are general mimics of a subset of prey vibrations that fall within the range of vibrations classified by spiders as 'prey'.

  20. Universal mesoscopic conductance fluctuations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Evangelou, S.N.

    1992-01-01

    The theory of conductance fluctuations in disordered metallic systems with size large compared to the mean free path of the electron but small compared to localization length is considered. It is demonstrates that fluctuations have an universal character and are due to repulsion between levels and spectral rigidity. The basic fluctuation measures for the energy spectrum in the mesoscopic regime of disordered systems are consistent with the Gaussian random matrix ensemble predictions. Although our disordered electron random matrix ensemble does not belong to the Gaussian ensemble the two ensembles turn out to be essentially similar. The level repulsion and the spectral rigidity found in nuclear spectra should also be observed in the metallic regime of Anderson localization. 7 refs. (orig.)

  1. Rapid prey evolution can alter the structure of predator-prey communities

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Friman, V. -P.; Jousset, A.; Buckling, A.

    Although microevolution has been shown to play an important role in pairwise antagonistic species interactions, its importance in more complex communities has received little attention. Here, we used two Pseudomonas fluorescens prey bacterial strains (SBW25 and F113) and Tetrahymena thermophila

  2. Fluctuations of population density in Bornean orangutans (Pongo pygmaeus morio) related to fruit availability in the Danum Valley, Sabah, Malaysia: a 10-year record including two mast fruitings and three other peak fruitings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanamori, Tomoko; Kuze, Noko; Bernard, Henry; Malim, Titol Peter; Kohshima, Shiro

    2017-01-01

    We investigated the population density of Bornean orangutans (Pongo pygmaeus morio) and fruit availability for 10 years (2005-2014), in primary lowland dipterocarp forests in the Danum Valley, Sabah, Malaysia. During the research period, two mast fruitings and three other peak fruiting events of different scales occurred in the study area. The orangutan population density, estimated every 2 months by the marked nest count method, changed between 0.3 and 4.4 ind/km 2 and the mean population density was 1.3 ind/km 2  ± SE 0.1 (n = 56). The population density increased markedly during mast and peak fruiting periods. A significant positive correlation was observed between the population density and fruit availability in the study period (Spearman, R = 0.3, P < 0.01, n = 56). During non-fruiting periods, however, no significant correlation was observed between them. These results suggest that the spatial difference in fruit availability during mast and peak fruiting periods was larger than during non-fruiting periods, and many orangutans temporarily moved to the study site from the surrounding areas seeking fruit.

  3. The fluctuating gap model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cao, Xiaobin

    2011-01-15

    The quasi-one-dimensional systems exhibit some unusual phenomenon, such as the Peierls instability, the pseudogap phenomena and the absence of a Fermi-Dirac distribution function line shape in the photoemission spectroscopy. Ever since the discovery of materials with highly anisotropic properties, it has been recognized that fluctuations play an important role above the three-dimensional phase transition. This regime where the precursor fluctuations are presented can be described by the so called fluctuating gap model (FGM) which was derived from the Froehlich Hamiltonian to study the low energy physics of the one-dimensional electron-phonon system. Not only is the FGM of great interest in the context of quasi-one-dimensional materials, liquid metal and spin waves above T{sub c} in ferromagnets, but also in the semiclassical approximation of superconductivity, it is possible to replace the original three-dimensional problem by a directional average over effectively one-dimensional problem which in the weak coupling limit is described by the FGM. In this work, we investigate the FGM in a wide temperature range with different statistics of the order parameter fluctuations. We derive a formally exact solution to this problem and calculate the density of states, the spectral function and the optical conductivity. In our calculation, we show that a Dyson singularity appears in the low energy density of states for Gaussian fluctuations in the commensurate case. In the incommensurate case, there is no such kind of singularity, and the zero frequency density of states varies differently as a function of the correlation lengths for different statistics of the order parameter fluctuations. Using the density of states we calculated with non-Gaussian order parameter fluctuations, we are able to calculate the static spin susceptibility which agrees with the experimental data very well. In the calculation of the spectral functions, we show that as the correlation increases, the

  4. The fluctuating gap model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cao, Xiaobin

    2011-01-01

    The quasi-one-dimensional systems exhibit some unusual phenomenon, such as the Peierls instability, the pseudogap phenomena and the absence of a Fermi-Dirac distribution function line shape in the photoemission spectroscopy. Ever since the discovery of materials with highly anisotropic properties, it has been recognized that fluctuations play an important role above the three-dimensional phase transition. This regime where the precursor fluctuations are presented can be described by the so called fluctuating gap model (FGM) which was derived from the Froehlich Hamiltonian to study the low energy physics of the one-dimensional electron-phonon system. Not only is the FGM of great interest in the context of quasi-one-dimensional materials, liquid metal and spin waves above T c in ferromagnets, but also in the semiclassical approximation of superconductivity, it is possible to replace the original three-dimensional problem by a directional average over effectively one-dimensional problem which in the weak coupling limit is described by the FGM. In this work, we investigate the FGM in a wide temperature range with different statistics of the order parameter fluctuations. We derive a formally exact solution to this problem and calculate the density of states, the spectral function and the optical conductivity. In our calculation, we show that a Dyson singularity appears in the low energy density of states for Gaussian fluctuations in the commensurate case. In the incommensurate case, there is no such kind of singularity, and the zero frequency density of states varies differently as a function of the correlation lengths for different statistics of the order parameter fluctuations. Using the density of states we calculated with non-Gaussian order parameter fluctuations, we are able to calculate the static spin susceptibility which agrees with the experimental data very well. In the calculation of the spectral functions, we show that as the correlation increases, the quasi

  5. The Coevolution of "Tyrannosaurus" & Its Prey: Could "Tyrannosaurus" Chase down & Kill a "Triceratops" for Lunch?

    Science.gov (United States)

    May, S. Randolph

    2014-01-01

    Students will analyze the coevolution of the predator-prey relationships between "Tyrannosaurus rex" and its prey species using analyses of animal speeds from fossilized trackways, prey-animal armaments, adaptive behaviors, bite marks on prey-animal fossils, predator-prey ratios, and scavenger competition. The students will be asked to…

  6. Diet choice of a predator in the wild: overabundance of prey and missed opportunities along the prey capture sequence

    OpenAIRE

    Brechbühl, Rolf; Casas, Jérôme; Bacher, Sven

    2012-01-01

    Optimal diet theory (ODT) postulates that predators adjust their foraging decisions by calculating a prey value from the potential biomass gain, handling time, prey vulnerability and encounter rate. Tests of ODT have however so far mainly been restricted to laboratory settings. By video surveillance, we gathered a large data set of more than 2000 field observations of crab spider (Misumena vatia) encounters with potential prey. We then tested whether the complex ODT or two simpler models (pre...

  7. Evolution of predator dispersal in relation to spatio-temporal prey dynamics: how not to get stuck in the wrong place!

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Justin M J Travis

    Full Text Available The eco-evolutionary dynamics of dispersal are recognised as key in determining the responses of populations to environmental changes. Here, by developing a novel modelling approach, we show that predators are likely to have evolved to emigrate more often and become more selective over their destination patch when their prey species exhibit spatio-temporally complex dynamics. We additionally demonstrate that the cost of dispersal can vary substantially across space and time. Perhaps as a consequence of current environmental change, many key prey species are currently exhibiting major shifts in their spatio-temporal dynamics. By exploring similar shifts in silico, we predict that predator populations will be most vulnerable when prey dynamics shift from stable to complex. The more sophisticated dispersal rules, and greater variance therein, that evolve under complex dynamics will enable persistence across a broader range of prey dynamics than the rules which evolve under relatively stable prey conditions.

  8. Fluctuating Asymmetry of Human Populations: A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John H. Graham

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Fluctuating asymmetry, the random deviation from perfect symmetry, is a widely used population-level index of developmental instability, developmental noise, and robustness. It reflects a population’s state of adaptation and genomic coadaptation. Here, we review the literature on fluctuating asymmetry of human populations. The most widely used bilateral traits include skeletal, dental, and facial dimensions; dermatoglyphic patterns and ridge counts; and facial shape. Each trait has its advantages and disadvantages, but results are most robust when multiple traits are combined into a composite index of fluctuating asymmetry (CFA. Both environmental (diet, climate, toxins and genetic (aneuploidy, heterozygosity, inbreeding stressors have been linked to population-level variation in fluctuating asymmetry. In general, these stressors increase average fluctuating asymmetry. Nevertheless, there have been many conflicting results, in part because (1 fluctuating asymmetry is a weak signal in a sea of noise; and (2 studies of human fluctuating asymmetry have not always followed best practices. The most serious concerns are insensitive asymmetry indices (correlation coefficient and coefficient of indetermination, inappropriate size scaling, unrecognized mixture distributions, inappropriate corrections for directional asymmetry, failure to use composite indices, and inattention to measurement error. Consequently, it is often difficult (or impossible to compare results across traits, and across studies.

  9. Resource partitioning between sympatric starfish from tropical unconsolidated substrate: Implications for coexistence and top-down control on benthic prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernandez, Wellington S.; Dias, Gustavo M.; Majer, Alessandra P.; Delboni, Cynthia G.; Denadai, Marcia R.; Turra, Alexander

    2017-09-01

    Starfish are important predators that may shape rocky shore communities, but their ecological role in unconsolidated substrate communities is still poorly known. We assessed the feeding niche overlap of two sympatric starfish, Astropecten marginatus and Luidia senegalensis, from the shallow subtidal zone in southeastern Brazil. During one year, we conducted monthly samples to compare diet composition, abundance and frequency of occurrence of each food item between species. With 24 of the 34 food items identified in this study consumed by both species, they exhibited generalist behaviors, with a more diverse diet during the warm periods, when the main prey items were abundant. However, A. marginatus showed more variation in abundance of prey consumed over time than L. senegalensis. The diet of A. marginatus consisted primarily of the bivalve Tivela mactroides and L. senegalensis of the bivalve Mulinia cleryana. The size of T. mactroides was positively correlated to the size of A. marginatus, while only small-sized individuals of L. senegalensis consumed this item, the most abundant prey in the area and an important food resource for local the community. The large quantity and variety of items consumed by both species support the structuring role of starfish in subtidal unconsolidated substrate communities, exerting a generalist top-down control, primarily on dominant bivalve populations. Temporal variation in the availability of the main prey may change how selective are both species. The differences in prey composition between species and the ontogenetic differences in prey selectivity by L. senegalensis may attenuate interspecific competition, facilitating their coexistence.

  10. Feeding preference of adult females of ribbonfish Trichiurus lepturus through prey proximate-composition and caloric values

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vanessa Trindade Bittar

    Full Text Available In the present study we analysed the proximate-composition and caloric values of the preferred prey consumed by ribbonfish, Trichiurus lepturus L. 1758 (adult females, that are distributed in the inner continental shelf from northern Rio de Janeiro State, southeastern Brazil (~22ºS, assessing the potential of nutritional and energetic approach as a tool to understand the feeding selective pattern of this marine top carnivore. The preferred prey of this predator composed of fish co-specifics, Pellona harroweri, Chirocentrodon bleekerianus, Lycengraulis grossidens, Peprilus paru, squid Doryteuthis plei, and shrimp Xiphopenaeus kroyeri were collected from 2007 to 2010 for proximate-composition (water, protein, lipid, ash, and carbohydrate and caloric value analyses. The correspondence analysis showed that protein is the main component in the prey species (61.32% of variance explained, standing out from the other nutrients. Lipid has the highest percentage related to L. grossidens, ash to X. kroyeri and carbohydrate to D. plei. The strong correlations between protein and caloric value (positive and lipid and caloric value (negative indicated that T. lepturus is attending its energy demand through the prey protein content. This work elucidated the feeding preference of adult females of T. lepturus in relation to nutritional and caloric content of their preferred prey. The species showed food selectivity to prey that provide more energy per ingested biomass, so that the feeding events can maximize the predator's caloric gain, which is obtained by a protein-based diet.

  11. Orthopteran insects as potential and preferred preys of the Red-footed Falcon (Falco vespertinus in Hungary

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Szövényi Gergely

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Orthopterans play an important role in Red-footed Falcon diet, however, most studies focus only on its qualitative food composition, and less on quantitative composition and preferences of the taxa identified as prey. During the present research, an extensive orthopterological investigation was carried out in the Red-footed Falcon study area, Vásárhelyi Plain (SE-Hungary between 2006 and 2008. Grasshoppers were sampled in their main habitats by sweep netting and pitfall trapping, and orthopterans were identified in the food remnants collected from the nests, both artificial and natural ones. 26 species were detected during the field works, 18 species from the food remnants. Altogether 32 species were identified. Prey preference values for all species for each year were calculated. More than two thirds of the identified preys were Decticus verrucivorus, and nearly 20% were Tettigonia viridissima. Other common prey species were Melanogryllus desertus, Platycleis affinis, Gryllotalpa gryllotalpa, Calliptamus italicus and Gryllus campestris. Based on the prey preference analysis, the most preferred species was Decticus verrucivorus with extreme high values, and the other preferred ones, overlapping with the previous list, were Platycleis affinis, Bicolorana bicolor, Tettigonia viridissima, Calliptamus italicus and Roeseliana roeselii. These results may help in the development of Red-footed Falcon-friendly habitats through the application of habitat management favourable for the preferred prey species.

  12. Snow Leopard and Himalayan Wolf: Food Habits and Prey Selection in the Central Himalayas, Nepal.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Madhu Chetri

    Full Text Available Top carnivores play an important role in maintaining energy flow and functioning of the ecosystem, and a clear understanding of their diets and foraging strategies is essential for developing effective conservation strategies. In this paper, we compared diets and prey selection of snow leopards and wolves based on analyses of genotyped scats (snow leopards n = 182, wolves n = 57, collected within 26 sampling grid cells (5×5 km that were distributed across a vast landscape of ca 5000 km2 in the Central Himalayas, Nepal. Within the grid cells, we sampled prey abundances using the double observer method. We found that interspecific differences in diet composition and prey selection reflected their respective habitat preferences, i.e. snow leopards significantly preferred cliff-dwelling wild ungulates (mainly bharal, 57% of identified material in scat samples, whereas wolves preferred typically plain-dwellers (Tibetan gazelle, kiang and argali, 31%. Livestock was consumed less frequently than their proportional availability by both predators (snow leopard = 27%; wolf = 24%, but significant avoidance was only detected among snow leopards. Among livestock species, snow leopards significantly preferred horses and goats, avoided yaks, and used sheep as available. We identified factors influencing diet composition using Generalized Linear Mixed Models. Wolves showed seasonal differences in the occurrence of small mammals/birds, probably due to the winter hibernation of an important prey, marmots. For snow leopard, occurrence of both wild ungulates and livestock in scats depended on sex and latitude. Wild ungulates occurrence increased while livestock decreased from south to north, probably due to a latitudinal gradient in prey availability. Livestock occurred more frequently in scats from male snow leopards (males: 47%, females: 21%, and wild ungulates more frequently in scats from females (males: 48%, females: 70%. The sexual difference agrees with

  13. Feeding rates in the chaetognath Sagitta elegans : effects of prey size, prey swimming behaviour and small-scale turbulence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Saito, H.; Kiørboe, Thomas

    2001-01-01

    distances. We develop a simple prey encounter rate model by describing the swimming prey as a 'force dipole' and assuming that a critical signal strength is required to elicit an attack. By fitting the model to the observations, a critical signal strength of 10(-2) cm s(-1) is estimated; this is very...... at rates up to an order of magnitude higher than similarly sized females, probably owing to differences in swimming behaviour. Sagitta elegans is an ambush predator that perceives its prey by hydromechanical signals. Faster swimming prey generates stronger signals and is, hence, perceived at longer...

  14. Nocturnal Foraging by Red-Legged Kittiwakes, a Surface Feeding Seabird That Relies on Deep Water Prey During Reproduction.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nobuo Kokubun

    Full Text Available Narrow foraging specialization may increase the vulnerability of marine predators to climate change. The red-legged kittiwake (Rissa brevirostris is endemic to the Bering Sea and has experienced drastic population fluctuations in recent decades, presumably due to climate-driven changes in food resources. Red-legged kittiwakes are presumed to be a nocturnal surface-foraging seabird that feed almost entirely on deep water Myctophidae fishes. However, there is little empirical evidence confirming their nocturnal foraging activity during the breeding season. This study investigated the foraging behavior of red-legged kittiwakes by combining GPS tracking, accelerometry, and dietary analyses at the world's largest breeding colony of red-legged kittiwakes on St. George I. GPS tracking of 5 individuals revealed that 82.5% of non-flight behavior (including foraging and resting occurred over the ocean basin (bottom depth >1,000 m. Acceleration data from 4 birds showed three types of behaviors during foraging trips: (1 flight, characterized by regular wing flapping, (2 resting on water, characterized by non-active behavior, and (3 foraging, when wing flapping was irregular. The proportions of both foraging and resting behaviors were higher at night (14.1 ± 7.1% and 20.8 ± 14.3% compared to those during the day (6.5 ± 3.0% and 1.7 ± 2.7%. The mean duration of foraging (2.4 ± 2.9 min was shorter than that of flight between prey patches (24.2 ± 53.1 min. Dietary analyses confirmed myctophids as the dominant prey (100% by occurrence and 98.4 ± 2.4% by wet-weight. Although the sample size was limited, these results suggest that breeding red-legged kittiwakes concentrated their foraging on myctophids available at the surface during nighttime in deep water regions. We propose that the diel patterns and ephemeral nature of their foraging activity reflected the availability of myctophids. Such foraging specialization may exacerbate the vulnerability of red

  15. Evaluating prey switching in wolf-ungulate systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garrott, Robert A; Bruggeman, Jason E; Becker, Matthew S; Kalinowski, Steven T; White, P J

    2007-09-01

    Wolf restoration has become a widely accepted conservation and management practice throughout North America and Europe, though the ecosystem effects of returning top carnivores remain both scientific and societal controversies. Mathematical models predicting and describing wolf-ungulate interactions are typically limited to the wolves' primary prey, with the potential for prey switching in wolf-multiple-ungulate systems only suggested or assumed by a number of investigators. We used insights gained from experiments on small taxa and field data from ongoing wolf-ungulate studies to construct a model of predator diet composition for a wolf-elk-bison system in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA. The model explicitly incorporates differential vulnerability of the ungulate prey types to predation, predator preference, differences in prey biomass, and the possibility of prey switching. Our model demonstrates wolf diet shifts with changes in relative abundance of the two prey, with the dynamics of this shift dependent on the combined influences of preference, differential vulnerability, relative abundances of prey, and whether or not switching occurs. Differences in vulnerability between elk and bison, and strong wolf preference for elk, result in an abrupt dietary shift occurring only when elk are very rare relative to bison, whereas incorporating switching initiates the dietary shift more gradually and at higher bison-elk ratios. We demonstrate how researchers can apply these equations in newly restored wolf-two-prey systems to empirically evaluate whether prey switching is occurring. Each coefficient in the model has a biological interpretation, and most can be directly estimated from empirical data collected from field studies. Given the potential for switching to dramatically influence predator-prey dynamics and the wide range of expected prey types and abundances in some systems where wolves are present and/or being restored, we suggest that this is an

  16. Fluctuating Asymmetry and Intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bates, Timothy C.

    2007-01-01

    The general factor of mental ability ("g") may reflect general biological fitness. If so, "g"-loaded measures such as Raven's progressive matrices should be related to morphological measures of fitness such as fluctuating asymmetry (FA: left-right asymmetry of a set of typically left-right symmetrical body traits such as finger…

  17. Baleen whales and their prey in a coastal environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piatt, John F.; Methven, David A.; Burger, Alan E.; McLagan, Ruth L.; Mercer, Vicki; Creelman, Elizabeth

    1989-01-01

    Patterns of abundance of humpback (Megaptera novaeangliae), fin (Balaenoptera physalus), and minke (Balaenoptera acutorostrata) whales are described in relation to the abundance of their primary prey, capelin (Mallotus villosus), during 1982–1985 at Witless Bay, Newfoundland. The abundance ratio of the three whale species was 10:1:3.5, respectively. Abundance of all whale species was strongly correlated with abundance of capelin through each season and between years. Capelin abundance accounted for 63% of the variation in whale numbers in 1983 and 1984, while environmental parameters (e.g., water temperatures) accounted for little variance. The amount of capelin consumed by whales was small (< 2%) compared with the amount available. All three species overlapped temporally at Witless Bay, but spatial overlap was reduced as fins occurred primarily offshore, minkes primarily inshore, and humpbacks in bay habitats of intermediate depth.

  18. Snow Leopard and Himalayan Wolf: Food Habits and Prey Selection in the Central Himalayas, Nepal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Odden, Morten; Wegge, Per

    2017-01-01

    Top carnivores play an important role in maintaining energy flow and functioning of the ecosystem, and a clear understanding of their diets and foraging strategies is essential for developing effective conservation strategies. In this paper, we compared diets and prey selection of snow leopards and wolves based on analyses of genotyped scats (snow leopards n = 182, wolves n = 57), collected within 26 sampling grid cells (5×5 km) that were distributed across a vast landscape of ca 5000 km2 in the Central Himalayas, Nepal. Within the grid cells, we sampled prey abundances using the double observer method. We found that interspecific differences in diet composition and prey selection reflected their respective habitat preferences, i.e. snow leopards significantly preferred cliff-dwelling wild ungulates (mainly bharal, 57% of identified material in scat samples), whereas wolves preferred typically plain-dwellers (Tibetan gazelle, kiang and argali, 31%). Livestock was consumed less frequently than their proportional availability by both predators (snow leopard = 27%; wolf = 24%), but significant avoidance was only detected among snow leopards. Among livestock species, snow leopards significantly preferred horses and goats, avoided yaks, and used sheep as available. We identified factors influencing diet composition using Generalized Linear Mixed Models. Wolves showed seasonal differences in the occurrence of small mammals/birds, probably due to the winter hibernation of an important prey, marmots. For snow leopard, occurrence of both wild ungulates and livestock in scats depended on sex and latitude. Wild ungulates occurrence increased while livestock decreased from south to north, probably due to a latitudinal gradient in prey availability. Livestock occurred more frequently in scats from male snow leopards (males: 47%, females: 21%), and wild ungulates more frequently in scats from females (males: 48%, females: 70%). The sexual difference agrees with previous

  19. Snow Leopard and Himalayan Wolf: Food Habits and Prey Selection in the Central Himalayas, Nepal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chetri, Madhu; Odden, Morten; Wegge, Per

    2017-01-01

    Top carnivores play an important role in maintaining energy flow and functioning of the ecosystem, and a clear understanding of their diets and foraging strategies is essential for developing effective conservation strategies. In this paper, we compared diets and prey selection of snow leopards and wolves based on analyses of genotyped scats (snow leopards n = 182, wolves n = 57), collected within 26 sampling grid cells (5×5 km) that were distributed across a vast landscape of ca 5000 km2 in the Central Himalayas, Nepal. Within the grid cells, we sampled prey abundances using the double observer method. We found that interspecific differences in diet composition and prey selection reflected their respective habitat preferences, i.e. snow leopards significantly preferred cliff-dwelling wild ungulates (mainly bharal, 57% of identified material in scat samples), whereas wolves preferred typically plain-dwellers (Tibetan gazelle, kiang and argali, 31%). Livestock was consumed less frequently than their proportional availability by both predators (snow leopard = 27%; wolf = 24%), but significant avoidance was only detected among snow leopards. Among livestock species, snow leopards significantly preferred horses and goats, avoided yaks, and used sheep as available. We identified factors influencing diet composition using Generalized Linear Mixed Models. Wolves showed seasonal differences in the occurrence of small mammals/birds, probably due to the winter hibernation of an important prey, marmots. For snow leopard, occurrence of both wild ungulates and livestock in scats depended on sex and latitude. Wild ungulates occurrence increased while livestock decreased from south to north, probably due to a latitudinal gradient in prey availability. Livestock occurred more frequently in scats from male snow leopards (males: 47%, females: 21%), and wild ungulates more frequently in scats from females (males: 48%, females: 70%). The sexual difference agrees with previous

  20. Plasma diffusion due to magnetic field fluctuations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Okuda, H.; Lee, W.W.; Lin, A.T.

    1979-01-01

    Plasma diffusion due to magnetic field fluctuations has been studied in two dimensions for a plasma near thermal equilibrium and when the fluctuations are suprathermal. It is found that near thermal equilibrium electron diffusion varies as B -2 when the collisionless skin depth is greater than the thermal electron gyroradius and is generally smaller than the diffusion due to collisions or electrostatic fluctuations for a low-β plasma. When the suprathermal magnetic fluctuation exists because of macroscopic plasma currents, electron diffusion is enhanced due to the coalescence of current filaments and magnetic islands. Magnetic field energy is found to condense to the longest wavelength available in the system and stays there longer than the electron diffusion time scale

  1. Determination of carnivores prey base by scat analysis in Samburu ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Administrator

    This study determined the prey base for four main carnivores found in Samburu community group ranches and ... a result of the hydrolysis of protein that acts as cement for the keratin ... prey component between predator species that may be attributed to ... causing ever-closer interaction between humans and wildlife. This is ...

  2. Stationary Patterns in One-Predator Two-Prey Models

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Michael; Zhigui, Lin

    1999-01-01

    Weakly-coupled elliptic system decribing models of simple three-species food webs such as the one-predator, two-prey modelis discussed. We show thatthere is no non-constant solution if diffusions or inter-specific competitions are strong, or if the intrinsic growths of the prey are slow...

  3. Stationary Patterns in One-Predator Two-Prey Models

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Michael; Zhigui, Lin

    1999-01-01

    Weakly-coupled elliptic system decribing models of simple three-species food webs such as the one-predator, two-prey model is discussed. We show that there is no non-constant solution if diffusions or inter-specific competitions are strong, or if the intrinsic growths of the prey are slow...

  4. Production of live prey for marine fish larvae

    OpenAIRE

    Kraul, S

    1989-01-01

    Tropical marine fish larvae vary in their requirements for live planktonic food. Selection of live prey species for culture depends on larval size and larval tolerance of water quality. This report describes some of the cultured prey species, and their uses and limits as effective food for fish larvae. Methods are presented for the culture of phytoplankton, rotifers, copepods, and other live feeds.

  5. Behavioral response races, predator-prey shell games, ecology of fear, and patch use of pumas and their ungulate prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laundré, John W

    2010-10-01

    The predator-prey shell game predicts random movement of prey across the landscape, whereas the behavioral response race and landscape of fear models predict that there should be a negative relationship between the spatial distribution of a predator and its behaviorally active prey. Additionally, prey have imperfect information on the whereabouts of their predator, which the predator should incorporate in its patch use strategy. I used a one-predator-one-prey system, puma (Puma concolor)-mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) to test the following predictions regarding predator-prey distribution and patch use by the predator. (1) Pumas will spend more time in high prey risk/low prey use habitat types, while deer will spend their time in low-risk habitats. Pumas should (2) select large forage patches more often, (3) remain in large patches longer, and (4) revisit individual large patches more often than individual smaller ones. I tested these predictions with an extensive telemetry data set collected over 16 years in a study area of patchy forested habitat. When active, pumas spent significantly less time in open areas of low intrinsic predation risk than did deer. Pumas used large patches more than expected, revisited individual large patches significantly more often than smaller ones, and stayed significantly longer in larger patches than in smaller ones. The results supported the prediction of a negative relationship in the spatial distribution of a predator and its prey and indicated that the predator is incorporating the prey's imperfect information about its presence. These results indicate a behavioral complexity on the landscape scale that can have far-reaching impacts on predator-prey interactions.

  6. Distinguishing the Impacts of Inadequate Prey and Vessel Traffic on an Endangered Killer Whale (Orcinus orca) Population

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ayres, Katherine L.; Booth, Rebecca K.; Hempelmann, Jennifer A.; Koski, Kari L.; Emmons, Candice K.; Baird, Robin W.; Balcomb-Bartok, Kelley; Hanson, M. Bradley; Ford, Michael J.; Wasser, Samuel K.

    2012-01-01

    Managing endangered species often involves evaluating the relative impacts of multiple anthropogenic and ecological pressures. This challenge is particularly formidable for cetaceans, which spend the majority of their time underwater. Noninvasive physiological approaches can be especially informative in this regard. We used a combination of fecal thyroid (T3) and glucocorticoid (GC) hormone measures to assess two threats influencing the endangered southern resident killer whales (SRKW; Orcinus orca) that frequent the inland waters of British Columbia, Canada and Washington, U.S.A. Glucocorticoids increase in response to nutritional and psychological stress, whereas thyroid hormone declines in response to nutritional stress but is unaffected by psychological stress. The inadequate prey hypothesis argues that the killer whales have become prey limited due to reductions of their dominant prey, Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha). The vessel impact hypothesis argues that high numbers of vessels in close proximity to the whales cause disturbance via psychological stress and/or impaired foraging ability. The GC and T3 measures supported the inadequate prey hypothesis. In particular, GC concentrations were negatively correlated with short-term changes in prey availability. Whereas, T3 concentrations varied by date and year in a manner that corresponded with more long-term prey availability. Physiological correlations with prey overshadowed any impacts of vessels since GCs were lowest during the peak in vessel abundance, which also coincided with the peak in salmon availability. Our results suggest that identification and recovery of strategic salmon populations in the SRKW diet are important to effectively promote SRKW recovery. PMID:22701560

  7. Nocturnal Foraging by Red-Legged Kittiwakes, a Surface Feeding Seabird That Relies on Deep Water Prey During Reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kokubun, Nobuo; Yamamoto, Takashi; Kikuchi, Dale M; Kitaysky, Alexander; Takahashi, Akinori

    2015-01-01

    Narrow foraging specialization may increase the vulnerability of marine predators to climate change. The red-legged kittiwake (Rissa brevirostris) is endemic to the Bering Sea and has experienced drastic population fluctuations in recent decades, presumably due to climate-driven changes in food resources. Red-legged kittiwakes are presumed to be a nocturnal surface-foraging seabird that feed almost entirely on deep water Myctophidae fishes. However, there is little empirical evidence confirming their nocturnal foraging activity during the breeding season. This study investigated the foraging behavior of red-legged kittiwakes by combining GPS tracking, accelerometry, and dietary analyses at the world's largest breeding colony of red-legged kittiwakes on St. George I. GPS tracking of 5 individuals revealed that 82.5% of non-flight behavior (including foraging and resting) occurred over the ocean basin (bottom depth >1,000 m). Acceleration data from 4 birds showed three types of behaviors during foraging trips: (1) flight, characterized by regular wing flapping, (2) resting on water, characterized by non-active behavior, and (3) foraging, when wing flapping was irregular. The proportions of both foraging and resting behaviors were higher at night (14.1 ± 7.1% and 20.8 ± 14.3%) compared to those during the day (6.5 ± 3.0% and 1.7 ± 2.7%). The mean duration of foraging (2.4 ± 2.9 min) was shorter than that of flight between prey patches (24.2 ± 53.1 min). Dietary analyses confirmed myctophids as the dominant prey (100% by occurrence and 98.4 ± 2.4% by wet-weight). Although the sample size was limited, these results suggest that breeding red-legged kittiwakes concentrated their foraging on myctophids available at the surface during nighttime in deep water regions. We propose that the diel patterns and ephemeral nature of their foraging activity reflected the availability of myctophids. Such foraging specialization may exacerbate the vulnerability of red

  8. Prey capture in zebrafish larvae serves as a model to study cognitive functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Akira eMuto

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Prey capture in zebrafish larvae is an innate behavior which can be observed as early as 4 days post fertilization, the day when they start to swim. This simple behavior apparently involves several neural processes including visual perception, recognition, decision-making, and motor control, and, therefore, serves as a good model system to study cognitive functions underlying natural behaviors in vertebrates. Recent progresses in imaging techniques provided us with a unique opportunity to image neuronal activity in the brain of an intact fish in real-time while the fish perceives a natural prey, paramecium. By expanding this approach, it would be possible to image entire brain areas at a single cell resolution in real-time during prey capture, and identify neuronal circuits important for cognitive functions. Further, activation or inhibition of those neuronal circuits with recently developed optogenetic tools or neurotoxins should shed light on their roles. Thus, we will be able to explore the prey capture in zebrafish larvae more thoroughly at cellular levels, which should establish a basis of understanding of the cognitive function in vertebrates.

  9. Information Dynamics in the Interaction between a Prey and a Predator Fish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Feng Hu

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Accessing information efficiently is vital for animals to make the optimal decisions, and it is particularly important when they are facing predators. Yet until now, very few quantitative conclusions have been drawn about the information dynamics in the interaction between animals due to the lack of appropriate theoretic measures. Here, we employ transfer entropy (TE, a new information-theoretic and model-free measure, to explore the information dynamics in the interaction between a predator and a prey fish. We conduct experiments in which a predator and a prey fish are confined in separate parts of an arena, but can communicate with each other visually and tactilely. TE is calculated on the pair’s coarse-grained state of the trajectories. We find that the prey’s TE is generally significantly bigger than the predator’s during trials, which indicates that the dominant information is transmitted from predator to prey. We then demonstrate that the direction of information flow is irrelevant to the parameters used in the coarse-grained procedures. We further calculate the prey’s TE at different distances between it and the predator. The resulted figure shows that there is a high plateau in the mid-range of the distance and that drops quickly at both the near and the far ends. This result reflects that there is a sensitive space zone where the prey is highly vigilant of the predator’s position.

  10. Prey capture behaviour evoked by simple visual stimuli in larval zebrafish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isaac Henry Bianco

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Understanding how the nervous system recognises salient stimuli in the environ- ment and selects and executes the appropriate behavioural responses is a fundamen- tal question in systems neuroscience. To facilitate the neuroethological study of visually-guided behaviour in larval zebrafish, we developed virtual reality assays in which precisely controlled visual cues can be presented to larvae whilst their behaviour is automatically monitored using machine-vision algorithms. Freely swimming larvae responded to moving stimuli in a size-dependent manner: they directed multiple low amplitude orienting turns (∼ 20◦ towards small moving spots (1◦ but reacted to larger spots (10◦ with high-amplitude aversive turns (∼ 60◦. The tracking of small spots led us to examine how larvae respond to prey during hunting routines. By analysing movie sequences of larvae hunting parame- cia, we discovered that all prey capture routines commence with eye convergence and larvae maintain their eyes in a highly converged position for the duration of the prey-tracking and capture swim phases. We adapted our virtual reality assay to deliver artificial visual cues to partially restrained larvae and found that small moving spots evoked convergent eye movements and J-turns of the tail, which are defining features of natural hunting. We propose that eye convergence represents the engagement of a predatory mode of behaviour in larval fish and serves to increase the region of binocular visual space to enable stereoscopic targeting of prey.

  11. Predator–prey analysis using system dynamics: An application to the steel industry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Douglas Crookes

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we use a predator–prey model to simulate intersectoral dynamics, with the global steel sector as the prey that supplies inputs and the automotive sector as the predator that demands its inputs. A further prey, an additional upstream supply sector, namely the iron ore sector, is added to reflect the implications of scarcity and resource limitations for industrial development and economic prospects. We find that capacity constraints in the steel industry could limit the future supply of vehicles, a result exacerbated by the unsustainable use of iron ore reserves. The solution is not for marginal steel industries to close, but for steelmakers to adapt and move to less resource-demanding secondary steelmaking technology rather than focusing on primary steelmaking. The forecasting capabilities of the model are compared with the outputs from a neural-network model. Although the results are comparable over the short term (±10 years, over the long term, results diverge, showing that forecasting steel-industry dynamics is complex and that further work is required to disentangle the drivers of supply and demand. This study indicates the potential advantages of using predator–prey models in modelling the supply chain in economics.

  12. Examining predator–prey body size, trophic level and body mass across marine and terrestrial mammals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tucker, Marlee A.; Rogers, Tracey L.

    2014-01-01

    Predator–prey relationships and trophic levels are indicators of community structure, and are important for monitoring ecosystem changes. Mammals colonized the marine environment on seven separate occasions, which resulted in differences in species' physiology, morphology and behaviour. It is likely that these changes have had a major effect upon predator–prey relationships and trophic position; however, the effect of environment is yet to be clarified. We compiled a dataset, based on the literature, to explore the relationship between body mass, trophic level and predator–prey ratio across terrestrial (n = 51) and marine (n = 56) mammals. We did not find the expected positive relationship between trophic level and body mass, but we did find that marine carnivores sit 1.3 trophic levels higher than terrestrial carnivores. Also, marine mammals are largely carnivorous and have significantly larger predator–prey ratios compared with their terrestrial counterparts. We propose that primary productivity, and its availability, is important for mammalian trophic structure and body size. Also, energy flow and community structure in the marine environment are influenced by differences in energy efficiency and increased food web stability. Enhancing our knowledge of feeding ecology in mammals has the potential to provide insights into the structure and functioning of marine and terrestrial communities. PMID:25377460

  13. Examining predator-prey body size, trophic level and body mass across marine and terrestrial mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tucker, Marlee A; Rogers, Tracey L

    2014-12-22

    Predator-prey relationships and trophic levels are indicators of community structure, and are important for monitoring ecosystem changes. Mammals colonized the marine environment on seven separate occasions, which resulted in differences in species' physiology, morphology and behaviour. It is likely that these changes have had a major effect upon predator-prey relationships and trophic position; however, the effect of environment is yet to be clarified. We compiled a dataset, based on the literature, to explore the relationship between body mass, trophic level and predator-prey ratio across terrestrial (n = 51) and marine (n = 56) mammals. We did not find the expected positive relationship between trophic level and body mass, but we did find that marine carnivores sit 1.3 trophic levels higher than terrestrial carnivores. Also, marine mammals are largely carnivorous and have significantly larger predator-prey ratios compared with their terrestrial counterparts. We propose that primary productivity, and its availability, is important for mammalian trophic structure and body size. Also, energy flow and community structure in the marine environment are influenced by differences in energy efficiency and increased food web stability. Enhancing our knowledge of feeding ecology in mammals has the potential to provide insights into the structure and functioning of marine and terrestrial communities. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  14. Feeding, prey selection and prey encounter mechanisms in the heterotrophic dinoflagellate Noctiluca scintillans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kiørboe, Thomas; Titelman, J.

    1998-01-01

    /or that microscale shear brings it into contact with prey. Noctiluca scintillans has a specific carbon content 1-2 orders of magnitude less than that typical for protists and, thus, an inflated volume. It also has a density slightly less than that of the ambient water and therefore ascends at high velocities...... (similar to 1 m h(- 1)). In stagnant water, clearance rates of latex spheres (5-80 mu m) increased approximately with prey particle size squared. This scaling is consistent with N.scintillans being an interception feeder. However, absolute clearance rates were substantially lower than those predicted...... higher rates than latex beads and other phytoplankters, particularly dinoflagellates. We propose that diatoms stick more efficiently than latex beads to the mucus of N.scintillans and that dinoflagellates reduce fatal contact behaviorally. We conclude that N.scintillans is an interception feeder...

  15. Functional responses of human hunters to their prey - why harvest statistics may not always reflect changes in prey population abundance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kahlert, Johnny Abildgaard; Fox, Anthony David; Heldbjerg, Henning

    pigeon Columba palumbus, coot Fulica atra, grey partridge Perdix perdix, roe deer Capreolus capreolus and brown hare Lepus europaeus in Denmark. If we consider hunting a form of predator-prey interaction, the annual kill can be viewed as a predator functional response to prey population size. Convergence...

  16. Harvesting policy for a delayed stage-structured Holling II predator-prey model with impulsive stocking prey

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jiao Jianjun; Meng Xinzhu; Chen Lansun

    2009-01-01

    A predator-prey model with a stage structure for the predator, which improves the assumption that each individual predator has the same ability to capture prey, is proposed by Wang et al. [Wang W, Mulone G, Salemi F, Salone V. Permanence and stability of a stage-structured predator-prey model. J Math Anal Appl 2001;262:499-528]. It is assumed that immature individuals and mature individuals of the predator are divided by a fixed age and that immature predators do not have the ability to attack prey. We do economic management behavior for Wang model [Wang et al., 2001] by continuous harvesting on predator and impulsive stocking on prey. Then, a delayed stage-structured Holling type II predator-prey model with impulsive stocking prey and continuous harvesting predator is established. It is also assumed that the predating products of the predator is only to increase its bearing ability. We obtain the sufficient conditions of the global attractivity of predator-extinction boundary periodic solution and the permanence of the system. Our results show that the behavior of impulsive stocking prey plays an important role for the permanence of the system, and provide tactical basis for the biological resource management. Further, the numerical analysis is also inserted to illuminate the dynamics of the system.

  17. Prey risk allocation in a grazing ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gude, Justin A; Garrott, Robert A; Borkowski, John J; King, Fred

    2006-02-01

    Understanding the behaviorally mediated indirect effects of predators in ecosystems requires knowledge of predator-prey behavioral interactions. In predator-ungulate-plant systems, empirical research quantifying how predators affect ungulate group sizes and distribution, in the context of other influential variables, is particularly needed. The risk allocation hypothesis proposes that prey behavioral responses to predation risk depend on background frequencies of exposure to risk, and it can be used to make predictions about predator-ungulate-plant interactions. We determined non-predation variables that affect elk (Cervus elaphus) group sizes and distribution on a winter range in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem (GYE) using logistic and log-linear regression on surveys of 513 1-km2 areas conducted over two years. Employing model selection techniques, we evaluated risk allocation and other a priori hypotheses of elk group size and distributional responses to wolf (Canis lupus) predation risk while accounting for influential non-wolf-predation variables. We found little evidence that wolves affect elk group sizes, which were strongly influenced by habitat type and hunting by humans. Following predictions from the risk allocation hypothesis, wolves likely created a more dynamic elk distribution in areas that they frequently hunted, as elk tended to move following wolf encounters in those areas. This response should dilute elk foraging pressure on plant communities in areas where they are frequently hunted by wolves. We predict that this should decrease the spatial heterogeneity of elk impacts on grasslands in areas that wolves frequently hunt. We also predict that this should decrease browsing pressure on heavily browsed woody plant stands in certain areas, which is supported by recent research in the GYE.

  18. The effect of ocean acidification and prey availabity on the growth of larval northern rock sole (Lepidopsetta polyxystra) (NCEI Accession 0157081)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This archival package contains laboratory experiment results of the effect of ocean acidification (OA) and prey availability on the growth of larval northern rock...

  19. Tests for attraction to prey and predator avoidance by chemical cues in spiders of the beech forest floor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wetter, Melissa B.

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Spiders leave draglines, faeces and other secretions behind when traveling through their microhabitat. The presence of these secretions may unintentionally inform other animals, prey as well as predators, about a recent and possible current predation risk or food availability. For a wolf spider, other spiders including smaller conspecifics, form a substantial part of their prey, and larger wolf spiders, again including conspecifics, are potential predators. We tested two hypotheses: that large wolf spiders may locate patches of potential spider prey through the presence of silk threads and/or other secretions; and that prey spiders may use secretions from large wolf spiders to avoid patches with high predation risk. We used large (subadult or adult Pardosa saltans to provide predator cues and mixed dwarf spiders or small (juvenile P. saltans to provide prey cues. Subadult wolf spiders were significantly attracted to litter contaminated by dwarf spiders or small conspecifics after 6 hours but no longer after 24 hours. In contrast, neither dwarf spiders nor small P. saltans showed significant avoidance of substrate contaminated by adult P. saltans. However, small P. saltans showed different activity patterns on the two substrates. The results indicate that wolf spiders are able to increase the efficiency of foraging by searching preferentially in patches with the presence of intraguild prey. The lack of a clear patch selection response of the prey in spite of a modified activity pattern may possibly be associated with the vertical stratification of the beech litter habitat: the reduced volume of spaces in the deeper layers could make downward rather than horizontal movement a fast and safe tactic against a large predator that cannot enter these spaces.

  20. Multi-locus phylogeography of the dusky dolphin (Lagenorhynchus obscurus: passive dispersal via the west-wind drift or response to prey species and climate change?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Würsig Bernd

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The dusky dolphin (Lagenorhynchus obscurus is distributed along temperate, coastal regions of New Zealand, South Africa, Argentina, and Peru where it feeds on schooling anchovy, sardines, and other small fishes and squid tightly associated with temperate ocean sea surface temperatures. Previous studies have suggested that the dusky dolphin dispersed in the Southern Hemisphere eastward from Peru via a linear, temperate dispersal corridor provided by the circumpolar west-wind drift. With new mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequence data, we propose an alternative phylogeographic history for the dusky dolphin that was structured by paleoceanographic conditions that repeatedly altered the distribution of its temperate prey species during the Plio-Pleistocene. Results In contrast to the west-wind drift hypothesis, phylogenetic analyses support a Pacific/Indian Ocean origin, with a relatively early and continued isolation of Peru from other regions. Dispersal of the dusky dolphin into the Atlantic is correlated with the history of anchovy populations, including multiple migrations from New Zealand to South Africa. Additionally, the cooling of the Eastern Equatorial Pacific led to the divergence of anchovy populations, which in turn explains the north-south equatorial transgression of L. obliquidens and the subsequent divergence of L. obscurus in the Southern Hemisphere. Conclusion Overall, our study fails to support the west-wind drift hypothesis. Instead, our data indicate that changes in primary productivity and related abundance of prey played a key role in shaping the phylogeography of the dusky dolphin, with periods of ocean change coincident with important events in the history of this temperate dolphin species. Moderate, short-term changes in sea surface temperatures and current systems have a powerful effect on anchovy populations; thus, it is not infeasible that repeated fluctuations in anchovy populations continue to play

  1. Acoustic shadows help gleaning bats find prey, but may be defeated by prey acoustic camouflage on rough surfaces.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clare, Elizabeth L; Holderied, Marc W

    2015-09-01

    Perceptual abilities of animals, like echolocating bats, are difficult to study because they challenge our understanding of non-visual senses. We used novel acoustic tomography to convert echoes into visual representations and compare these cues to traditional echo measurements. We provide a new hypothesis for the echo-acoustic basis of prey detection on surfaces. We propose that bats perceive a change in depth profile and an 'acoustic shadow' cast by prey. The shadow is more salient than prey echoes and particularly strong on smooth surfaces. This may explain why bats look for prey on flat surfaces like leaves using scanning behaviour. We propose that rather than forming search images for prey, whose characteristics are unpredictable, predators may look for disruptions to the resting surface (acoustic shadows). The fact that the acoustic shadow is much fainter on rougher resting surfaces provides the first empirical evidence for 'acoustic camouflage' as an anti-predator defence mechanism.

  2. Fluctuations and Instability in Sedimentation

    KAUST Repository

    Guazzelli, É lisabeth; Hinch, John

    2011-01-01

    This review concentrates on the fluctuations of the velocities of sedimenting spheres, and on the structural instability of a suspension of settling fibers. For many years, theoretical estimates and numerical simulations predicted the fluctuations

  3. Loggerhead turtles (Caretta caretta use vision to forage on gelatinous prey in mid-water.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tomoko Narazaki

    Full Text Available Identifying characteristics of foraging activity is fundamental to understanding an animals' lifestyle and foraging ecology. Despite its importance, monitoring the foraging activities of marine animals is difficult because direct observation is rarely possible. In this study, we use an animal-borne imaging system and three-dimensional data logger simultaneously to observe the foraging behaviour of large juvenile and adult sized loggerhead turtles (Caretta caretta in their natural environment. Video recordings showed that the turtles foraged on gelatinous prey while swimming in mid-water (i.e., defined as epipelagic water column deeper than 1 m in this study. By linking video and 3D data, we found that mid-water foraging events share the common feature of a marked deceleration phase associated with the capture and handling of the sluggish prey. Analysis of high-resolution 3D movements during mid-water foraging events, including presumptive events extracted from 3D data using deceleration in swim speed as a proxy for foraging (detection rate = 0.67, showed that turtles swam straight toward prey in 171 events (i.e., turning point absent but made a single turn toward the prey an average of 5.7±6.0 m before reaching the prey in 229 events (i.e., turning point present. Foraging events with a turning point tended to occur during the daytime, suggesting that turtles primarily used visual cues to locate prey. In addition, an incident of a turtle encountering a plastic bag while swimming in mid-water was recorded. The fact that the turtle's movements while approaching the plastic bag were analogous to those of a true foraging event, having a turning point and deceleration phase, also support the use of vision in mid-water foraging. Our study shows that integrated video and high-resolution 3D data analysis provides unique opportunities to understand foraging behaviours in the context of the sensory ecology involved in prey location.

  4. Fluctuations in Schottky barrier heights

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mahan, G.D.

    1984-01-01

    A double Schottky barrier is often formed at the grain boundary in polycrystalline semiconductors. The barrier height is shown to fluctuate in value due to the random nature of the impurity positions. The magnitude of the fluctuations is 0.1 eV, and the fluctuations cause the barrier height measured by capacitance to differ from the one measured by electrical conductivity

  5. A snail-eating snake recognizes prey handedness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danaisawadi, Patchara; Asami, Takahiro; Ota, Hidetoshi; Sutcharit, Chirasak; Panha, Somsak

    2016-04-05

    Specialized predator-prey interactions can be a driving force for their coevolution. Southeast Asian snail-eating snakes (Pareas) have more teeth on the right mandible and specialize in predation on the clockwise-coiled (dextral) majority in shelled snails by soft-body extraction. Snails have countered the snakes' dextral-predation by recurrent coil reversal, which generates diverse counterclockwise-coiled (sinistral) prey where Pareas snakes live. However, whether the snake predator in turn evolves any response to prey reversal is unknown. We show that Pareas carinatus living with abundant sinistrals avoids approaching or striking at a sinistral that is more difficult and costly to handle than a dextral. Whenever it strikes, however, the snake succeeds in predation by handling dextral and sinistral prey in reverse. In contrast, P. iwasakii with little access to sinistrals on small peripheral islands attempts and frequently misses capturing a given sinistral. Prey-handedness recognition should be advantageous for right-handed snail-eating snakes where frequently encountering sinistrals. Under dextral-predation by Pareas snakes, adaptive fixation of a prey population for a reversal gene instantaneously generates a sinistral species because interchiral mating is rarely possible. The novel warning, instead of sheltering, effect of sinistrality benefitting both predators and prey could further accelerate single-gene ecological speciation by left-right reversal.

  6. Cost of living dictates what whales, dolphins and porpoises eat: the importance of prey quality on predator foraging strategies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jérôme Spitz

    Full Text Available Understanding the mechanisms that drive prey selection is a major challenge in foraging ecology. Most studies of foraging strategies have focused on behavioural costs, and have generally failed to recognize that differences in the quality of prey may be as important to predators as the costs of acquisition. Here, we tested whether there is a relationship between the quality of diets (kJ · g(-1 consumed by cetaceans in the North Atlantic and their metabolic costs of living as estimated by indicators of muscle performance (mitochondrial density, n = 60, and lipid content, n = 37. We found that the cost of living of 11 cetacean species is tightly coupled with the quality of prey they consume. This relationship between diet quality and cost of living appears to be independent of phylogeny and body size, and runs counter to predictions that stem from the well-known scaling relationships between mass and metabolic rates. Our finding suggests that the quality of prey rather than the sheer quantity of food is a major determinant of foraging strategies employed by predators to meet their specific energy requirements. This predator-specific dependence on food quality appears to reflect the evolution of ecological strategies at a species level, and has implications for risk assessment associated with the consequences of changing the quality and quantities of prey available to top predators in marine ecosystems.

  7. Seasonal diet and prey preference of the African lion in a waterhole-driven semi-arid savanna.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zeke Davidson

    Full Text Available Large carnivores inhabiting ecosystems with heterogeneously distributed environmental resources with strong seasonal variations frequently employ opportunistic foraging strategies, often typified by seasonal switches in diet. In semi-arid ecosystems, herbivore distribution is generally more homogeneous in the wet season, when surface water is abundant, than in the dry season when only permanent sources remain. Here, we investigate the seasonal contribution of the different herbivore species, prey preference and distribution of kills (i.e. feeding locations of African lions in Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe, a semi-arid African savanna structured by artificial waterholes. We used data from 245 kills and 74 faecal samples. Buffalo consistently emerged as the most frequently utilised prey in all seasons by both male (56% and female (33% lions, contributing the most to lion dietary biomass. Jacobs' index also revealed that buffalo was the most intensively selected species throughout the year. For female lions, kudu and to a lesser extent the group "medium Bovidae" are the most important secondary prey. This study revealed seasonal patterns in secondary prey consumption by female lions partly based on prey ecology with browsers, such as giraffe and kudu, mainly consumed in the early dry season, and grazers, such as zebra and suids, contributing more to female diet in the late dry season. Further, it revealed the opportunistic hunting behaviour of lions for prey as diverse as elephants and mice, with elephants taken mostly as juveniles at the end of the dry season during droughts. Jacobs' index finally revealed a very strong preference for kills within 2 km from a waterhole for all prey species, except small antelopes, in all seasons. This suggested that surface-water resources form passive traps and contribute to the structuring of lion foraging behaviour.

  8. The Effect of Digestive Capacity on the Intake Rate of Toxic and Non-Toxic Prey in an Ecological Context.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Oudman

    Full Text Available Digestive capacity often limits food intake rate in animals. Many species can flexibly adjust digestive organ mass, enabling them to increase intake rate in times of increased energy requirement and/or scarcity of high-quality prey. However, some prey species are defended by secondary compounds, thereby forcing a toxin limitation on the forager's intake rate, a constraint that potentially cannot be alleviated by enlarging digestive capacity. Hence, physiological flexibility may have a differential effect on intake of different prey types, and consequently on dietary preferences. We tested this effect in red knots (Calidris canutus canutus, medium-sized migratory shorebirds that feed on hard-shelled, usually mollusc, prey. Because they ingest their prey whole and crush the shell in their gizzard, the intake rate of red knots is generally constrained by digestive capacity. However, one of their main prey, the bivalve Loripes lucinalis, imposes a toxin constraint due to its symbiosis with sulphide-oxidizing bacteria. We manipulated gizzard sizes of red knots through prolonged exposure to hard-shelled or soft foods. We then measured maximum intake rates of toxic Loripes versus a non-toxic bivalve, Dosinia isocardia. We found that intake of Dosinia exponentially increased with gizzard mass, confirming earlier results with non-toxic prey, whereas intake of Loripes was independent of gizzard mass. Using linear programming, we show that this leads to markedly different expected diet preferences in red knots that try to maximize energy intake rate with a small versus a large gizzard. Intra- and inter-individual variation in digestive capacity is found in many animal species. Hence, the here proposed functional link with individual differences in foraging decisions may be general. We emphasize the potential relevance of individual variation in physiology when studying trophic interactions.

  9. Predicting prey population dynamics from kill rate, predation rate and predator-prey ratios in three wolf-ungulate systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vucetich, John A; Hebblewhite, Mark; Smith, Douglas W; Peterson, Rolf O

    2011-11-01

    1. Predation rate (PR) and kill rate are both fundamental statistics for understanding predation. However, relatively little is known about how these statistics relate to one another and how they relate to prey population dynamics. We assess these relationships across three systems where wolf-prey dynamics have been observed for 41 years (Isle Royale), 19 years (Banff) and 12 years (Yellowstone). 2. To provide context for this empirical assessment, we developed theoretical predictions of the relationship between kill rate and PR under a broad range of predator-prey models including predator-dependent, ratio-dependent and Lotka-Volterra dynamics. 3. The theoretical predictions indicate that kill rate can be related to PR in a variety of diverse ways (e.g. positive, negative, unrelated) that depend on the nature of predator-prey dynamics (e.g. structure of the functional response). These simulations also suggested that the ratio of predator-to-prey is a good predictor of prey growth rate. That result motivated us to assess the empirical relationship between the ratio and prey growth rate for each of the three study sites. 4. The empirical relationships indicate that PR is not well predicted by kill rate, but is better predicted by the ratio of predator-to-prey. Kill rate is also a poor predictor of prey growth rate. However, PR and ratio of predator-to-prey each explained significant portions of variation in prey growth rate for two of the three study sites. 5. Our analyses offer two general insights. First, Isle Royale, Banff and Yellowstone are similar insomuch as they all include wolves preying on large ungulates. However, they also differ in species diversity of predator and prey communities, exploitation by humans and the role of dispersal. Even with the benefit of our analysis, it remains difficult to judge whether to be more impressed by the similarities or differences. This difficulty nicely illustrates a fundamental property of ecological

  10. Predator cannibalism can intensify negative impacts on heterospecific prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takatsu, Kunio; Kishida, Osamu

    2015-07-01

    Although natural populations consist of individuals with different traits, and the degree of phenotypic variation varies among populations, the impact of phenotypic variation on ecological interactions has received little attention, because traditional approaches to community ecology assume homogeneity of individuals within a population. Stage structure, which is a common way of generating size and developmental variation within predator populations, can drive cannibalistic interactions, which can affect the strength of predatory effects on the predator's heterospecific prey. Studies have shown that predator cannibalism weakens predatory effects on heterospecific prey by reducing the size of the predator population and by inducing less feeding activity of noncannibal predators. We predict, however, that predator cannibalism, by promoting rapid growth of the cannibals, can also intensify predation pressure on heterospecific prey, because large predators have large resource requirements and may utilize a wider variety of prey species. To test this hypothesis, we conducted an experiment in which we created carnivorous salamander (Hynobius retardatus) populations with different stage structures by manipulating the salamander's hatch timing (i.e., populations with large or small variation in the timing of hatching), and explored the resultant impacts on the abundance, behavior, morphology, and life history of the salamander's large heterospecific prey, Rana pirica frog tadpoles. Cannibalism was rare in salamander populations having small hatch-timing variation, but was frequent in those having large hatch-timing variation. Thus, giant salamander cannibals occurred only in the latter. We clearly showed that salamander giants exerted strong predation pressure on frog tadpoles, which induced large behavioral and morphological defenses in the tadpoles and caused them to metamorphose late at large size. Hence, predator cannibalism arising from large variation in the timing

  11. Temperature and prey capture: opposite relationships in two predator taxa

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kruse, Peter Dalgas; Toft, Søren; Sunderland, Keith

    2008-01-01

    to catch swiftly moving prey. 2. The first experiment examined the spontaneous locomotor activity of the predators and of fruit flies at different temperatures (5, 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30 °C) and light conditions (light, dark). A second experiment examined the effect of temperature and light...... different prey groups within the set of potential prey at different times of the day or at different seasons. The ability of many carabid beetles to forage at low temperatures may have nutritional benefits and increases the diversity of interactions in terrestrial food webs....

  12. A self-organized system of smart preys and predators

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rozenfeld, Alejandro F. [Instituto de Investigaciones Fisicoquimicas Teoricas y Aplicadas (INIFTA), Facultad de Ciencias Exactas, UNLP, CONICET, Suc. 4, C.C. 16 (1900) La Plata (Argentina); Albano, Ezequiel V. [Instituto de Investigaciones Fisicoquimicas Teoricas y Aplicadas (INIFTA), Facultad de Ciencias Exactas, UNLP, CONICET, Suc. 4, C.C. 16 (1900) La Plata (Argentina)]. E-mail: ealbano@inifta.unlp.edu.ar

    2004-11-22

    Based on the fact that, a standard prey-predator model (SPPM), exhibits irreversible phase transitions, belonging to the universality class of directed percolation (DP), between prey-predator coexistence and predator extinction [Phys. Lett. A 280 (2001) 45], a self-organized prey-predator model (SOPPM) is formulated and studied by means of extensive Monte Carlo simulations. The SOPPM is achieved defining the parameters of the SPPM as functions of the density of species. It is shown that the SOPPM self-organizes into an active state close the absorbing phase of the SPPM, and consequently their avalanche exponents also belong to the universality class of DP.

  13. Strain fluctuations and elastic constants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Parrinello, M.; Rahman, A.

    1982-03-01

    It is shown that the elastic strain fluctuations are a direct measure of elastic compliances in a general anisotropic medium; depending on the ensemble in which the fluctuation is measured either the isothermal or the adiabatic compliances are obtained. These fluctuations can now be calculated in a constant enthalpy and pressure, and hence, constant entropy, ensemble due to recent develpments in the molecular dynamics techniques. A calculation for a Ni single crystal under uniform uniaxial 100 tensile or compressive load is presented as an illustration of the relationships derived between various strain fluctuations and the elastic modulii. The Born stability criteria and the behavior of strain fluctuations are shown to be related.

  14. Gambling with Superconducting Fluctuations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foltyn, Marek; Zgirski, Maciej

    2015-08-01

    Josephson junctions and superconducting nanowires, when biased close to superconducting critical current, can switch to a nonzero voltage state by thermal or quantum fluctuations. The process is understood as an escape of a Brownian particle from a metastable state. Since this effect is fully stochastic, we propose to use it for generating random numbers. We present protocol for obtaining random numbers and test the experimentally harvested data for their fidelity. Our work is prerequisite for using the Josephson junction as a tool for stochastic (probabilistic) determination of physical parameters such as magnetic flux, temperature, and current.

  15. Fluctuations in the hadronization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bozek, P.; Ploszajaczak, M.

    1992-01-01

    The multiscaling in the fluctuations of the multiparticle distributions at small scales is studied. Similarly to the multiscaling effect, recently found in multifractal models, the dependence of the intermittency patterns on the low density cut-off in the cascade is analyzed. The effect changes the scaling behaviour and leads to stronger dependence of the scaled factorial moments on the resolution than the power law. This could be an explanation of the behaviour observed recently in the experimental 3-dimensional data. The multiscaling analysis allows to restore the universality in the processes with different cut-offs and could be used in the analysis of the experimental data. (author) 17 refs., 5 figs

  16. Vertical migrations of a deep-sea fish and its prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pedro Afonso

    Full Text Available It has been speculated that some deep-sea fishes can display large vertical migrations and likely doing so to explore the full suite of benthopelagic food resources, especially the pelagic organisms of the deep scattering layer (DSL. This would help explain the success of fishes residing at seamounts and the increased biodiversity found in these features of the open ocean. We combined active plus passive acoustic telemetry of blackspot seabream with in situ environmental and biological (backscattering data collection at a seamount to verify if its behaviour is dominated by vertical movements as a response to temporal changes in environmental conditions and pelagic prey availability. We found that seabream extensively migrate up and down the water column, that these patterns are cyclic both in short-term (tidal, diel as well as long-term (seasonal scales, and that they partially match the availability of potential DSL prey components. Furthermore, the emerging pattern points to a more complex spatial behaviour than previously anticipated, suggesting a seasonal switch in the diel behaviour mode (benthic vs. pelagic of seabream, which may reflect an adaptation to differences in prey availability. This study is the first to document the fine scale three-dimensional behaviour of a deep-sea fish residing at seamounts.

  17. Currency speculation and dollar fluctuations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephan Schulmeister

    1988-12-01

    Full Text Available In this study the reasons behind the wide fluctuations of the dollar exchange rate following the breakdown of the Bretton Woods system, for the most part unexplained by the prevailing exchange rate theories, are explored. To do so, the author investigates the exchange rate between the two most traded currencies, the dollar and the deutschemark, from 1973 to 1988. In the first part, the pattern of the daily exchange rate movements is examined to show that a sequence of upward and downward trends interrupted by non-directional movements is typical of exchange rate dynamics in the short run. Moreover, this pattern is systemically exploited through currency speculation, particularly through the use of “technical analysis”. In the second part, the author focuses on the medium-term, arguing that fluctuations can be explained as the result of interacting disequilibria in the goods and asset markets. Although currency speculation has been systemically profitable for most currencies, it should be considered to be destabilizing since the sequence of price runs caused large and persistent deviations of exchange rates from their equilibrium values (purchasing power parity.

  18. Aspects of the winter predator--prey relationship between sauger and threadfin shad in Watts Bar Reservoir, Tennessee

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McGee, M.V.; Griffith, J.S.; McLean, R.B.

    1978-04-01

    This study sought to determine the impact of cold-induced mortality and impingement of threadfin shad (Dorsoma petenense) on the food consumption and prey selection of sauger (Stizostedion canadense), and to estimate the ability of sauger to digest meals consumed at low temperatures in winter. Prey selection of sauger was monitored from November 1976 through April 1977. Stomach contents of 536 sauger indicated threadfin provided the entire forage base for sauger through January. Food consumption of sauger was reduced and prey selection shifted to other species after January due to the combined effects of predation, impingement, and natural mortality of cold-stressed threadfin. Threadfin shad of a size available to most sauger were virtually eliminated by February. From February through April some sauger utilized alternate prey species. Laboratory digestion rate studies of sauger indicated digestion of force-fed meals of 4 to 7 g fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas) could proceed to 90 percent completion in 54 h at 5 C, 47 hr at 10 C, and 25 hr at 15 C. Conclusions of this study are: (1) that threadfin shad were the most abundant and vulnerable prey species available to and utilized by sauger during the late fall and winter months; (2) extensive mortalities of threadfin due to cold-stress increased sauger predation on four alternate prey species; (3) sauger continued feeding and digesting meals at temperatures between 5 and 15 C every 1 to 3 days; (4) sauger stored excess energy available from threadfin early in the winter as visceral fat which was available later when food consumption was reduced.

  19. Aspects of the winter predator--prey relationship between sauger and threadfin shad in Watts Bar Reservoir, Tennessee

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McGee, M.V.; Griffith, J.S.; McLean, R.B.

    1978-01-01

    This study sought to determine the impact of cold-induced mortality and impingement of threadfin shad (Dorsoma petenense) on the food consumption and prey selection of sauger (Stizostedion canadense), and to estimate the ability of sauger to digest meals consumed at low temperatures in winter. Prey selection of sauger was monitored from November 1976 through April 1977. Stomach contents of 536 sauger indicated threadfin provided the entire forage base for sauger through January. Food consumption of sauger was reduced and prey selection shifted to other species after January due to the combined effects of predation, impingement, and natural mortality of cold-stressed threadfin. Threadfin shad of a size available to most sauger were virtually eliminated by February. From February through April some sauger utilized alternate prey species. Laboratory digestion rate studies of sauger indicated digestion of force-fed meals of 4 to 7 g fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas) could proceed to 90 percent completion in 54 h at 5 C, 47 hr at 10 C, and 25 hr at 15 C. Conclusions of this study are: (1) that threadfin shad were the most abundant and vulnerable prey species available to and utilized by sauger during the late fall and winter months; (2) extensive mortalities of threadfin due to cold-stress increased sauger predation on four alternate prey species; (3) sauger continued feeding and digesting meals at temperatures between 5 and 15 C every 1 to 3 days; (4) sauger stored excess energy available from threadfin early in the winter as visceral fat which was available later when food consumption was reduced

  20. Dynamics of a Diffusive Predator-Prey Model with Allee Effect on Predator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaoqin Wang

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The reaction-diffusion Holling-Tanner prey-predator model considering the Allee effect on predator, under zero-flux boundary conditions, is discussed. Some properties of the solutions, such as dissipation and persistence, are obtained. Local and global stability of the positive equilibrium and Turing instability are studied. With the help of the numerical simulations, the rich Turing patterns, including holes, stripes, and spots patterns, are obtained.

  1. Existence and stability of periodic solutions for a delayed prey-predator model with diffusion effects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hongwei Liang

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Existence and stability of spatially periodic solutions for a delay prey-predator diffusion system are concerned in this work. We obtain that the system can generate the spatially nonhomogeneous periodic solutions when the diffusive rates are suitably small. This result demonstrates that the diffusion plays an important role on deriving the complex spatiotemporal dynamics. Meanwhile, the stability of the spatially periodic solutions is also studied. Finally, in order to verify our theoretical results, some numerical simulations are also included.

  2. Ambush frequency should increase over time during optimal predator search for prey

    OpenAIRE

    Alpern, Steve; Fokkink, Robbert; Timmer, Marco; Casas, Jérôme

    2011-01-01

    We advance and apply the mathematical theory of search games to model the problem faced by a predator searching for prey. Two search modes are available: ambush and cruising search. Some species can adopt either mode, with their choice at a given time traditionally explained in terms of varying habitat and physiological conditions. We present an additional explanation of the observed predator alternation between these search modes, which is based on the dynamical nature of the search game the...

  3. Prey vulnerability limits top-down control and alters reciprocal feedbacks in a subsidized model food web.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William I Atlas

    Full Text Available Resource subsidies increase the productivity of recipient food webs and can affect ecosystem dynamics. Subsidies of prey often support elevated predator biomass which may intensify top-down control and reduce the flow of reciprocal subsidies into adjacent ecosystems. However, top-down control in subsidized food webs may be limited if primary consumers posses morphological or behavioral traits that limit vulnerability to predation. In forested streams, terrestrial prey support high predator biomass creating the potential for strong top-down control, however armored primary consumers often dominate the invertebrate assemblage. Using empirically based simulation models, we tested the response of stream food webs to variations in subsidy magnitude, prey vulnerability, and the presence of two top predators. While terrestrial prey inputs increased predator biomass (+12%, the presence of armored primary consumers inhibited top-down control, and diverted most aquatic energy (∼75% into the riparian forest through aquatic insect emergence. Food webs without armored invertebrates experienced strong trophic cascades, resulting in higher algal (∼50% and detrital (∼1600% biomass, and reduced insect emergence (-90%. These results suggest prey vulnerability can mediate food web responses to subsidies, and that top-down control can be arrested even when predator-invulnerable consumers are uncommon (20% regardless of the level of subsidy.

  4. Effects of prey macronutrient content on body composition and nutrient intake in a web-building spider.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jesse Hawley

    Full Text Available The nutritional composition of diets can vary widely in nature and have large effects on the growth, reproduction and survival of animals. Many animals, especially herbivores, will tightly regulate the nutritional composition of their body, which has been referred to as nutritional homeostasis. We tested how experimental manipulation of the lipid and protein content of live prey affected the nutrient reserves and subsequent diet regulation of web-building spiders, Argiope keyserlingi. Live locusts were injected with experimental solutions containing specific amounts of lipid and protein and then fed to spiders. The nutrient composition of the spiders' bodies was directly related to the nutrient composition of the prey on which they fed. We then conducted an experiment where spiders were fed either high lipid or high protein prey and subsequently provided with two large unmanipulated locusts. Prior diet did not affect the amount or ratio of lipid and protein ingested by spiders when feeding on unmanipulated prey. Argiope keyserlingi were flexible in the storage of lipid and protein in their bodies and did not bias their extraction of nutrients from prey to compensate for previously biased diets. Some carnivores, especially those that experience frequent food limitation, may be less likely to strictly regulate their body composition than herbivores because food limitation may encourage opportunistic ingestion and assimilation of nutrients.

  5. Dynamic Evolution Analysis of Stock Price Fluctuation and Its Control

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuhua Xu

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper studies a simple dynamical system of stock price fluctuation time series based on the rule of stock market. When the stock price fluctuation system is disturbed by external excitations, the system exhibits obviously chaotic phenomena, and its basic dynamic properties are analyzed. At the same time, a new fixed-time convergence theorem is proposed for achieving fixed-time control of stock price fluctuation system. Finally, the effectiveness of the method is verified by numerical simulation.

  6. Prey selection by a reintroduced lion population in the Greater ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Prey selection by a reintroduced lion population in the Greater Makalali Conservancy, South Africa. Dave Druce, Heleen Genis, Jonathan Braak, Sophie Greatwood, Audrey Delsink, Ross Kettles, Luke Hunter, Rob Slotow ...

  7. An investigation into the chemical composition of alternative invertebrate prey

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oonincx, D.G.A.B.; Dierenfeld, E.S.

    2012-01-01

    The aim of this study was to determine the chemical composition of eight invertebrate species and evaluate their suitability as alternative prey. The species selected were rusty red cockroaches (Blatta lateralis), six-spotted cockroaches (Eublaberus distanti), Madagascar hissing cockroaches

  8. Analyses of stomach contents provide information on prey of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    spamer

    example. In this paper, information is presented on the cephalopods eaten by four species of shark. Initial studies had ..... Their prey selection supports sighting .... 18(1): 27 – 40. KLIMLEY, A. P. 1993 — Highly directional swimming by scal-.

  9. Interaction between Mesodinium rubrum and its prey: importance of prey concentration, irradiance and pH

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Moldrup, Morten; Hansen, Per Juel

    2007-01-01

    in mixed cultures of M. rubrum and Teleaulax sp. The functional and numerical response study showed that the threshold concentration of the cryptophyte Teleaulax sp. was 50 cells ml-1 and the maximum growth of M. rubrum was 0.23 and 0.49 d-1 for 20 and 100 µE m2 s-1, respectively. Calculation of ingestion...... to starvation showed that M. rubrum could survive for around 50 d without prey. These results are all discussed with respect to M. rubrum's adaptation to its environment....

  10. The effect of habitat structure on prey mortality depends on predator and prey microhabitat use

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Klečka, Jan; Boukal S., David

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 176, č. 1 (2014), s. 183-191 ISSN 0029-8549 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP505/10/0096 Grant - others:GA JU(CZ) 145/2010/P; EU Marie Curie European Grant(CZ) PERG04-GA-2008-239543 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : predation * predator-prey interactions * habitat complexity Subject RIV: EH - Ecology , Behaviour Impact factor: 3.093, year: 2014 http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs00442-014-3007-6

  11. Influence of prey body characteristics and performance on predator selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holmes, Thomas H; McCormick, Mark I

    2009-03-01

    At the time of settlement to the reef environment, coral reef fishes differ in a number of characteristics that may influence their survival during a predatory encounter. This study investigated the selective nature of predation by both a multi-species predator pool, and a single common predator (Pseudochromis fuscus), on the reef fish, Pomacentrus amboinensis. The study focused on the early post-settlement period of P. amboinensis, when mortality, and hence selection, is known to be highest. Correlations between nine different measures of body condition/performance were examined at the time of settlement, in order to elucidate the relationships between different traits. Single-predator (P. fuscus) choice trials were conducted in 57.4-l aquaria with respect to three different prey characteristics [standard length (SL), body weight and burst swimming speed], whilst multi-species trials were conducted on open patch reefs, manipulating prey body weight only. Relationships between the nine measures of condition/performance were generally poor, with the strongest correlations occurring between the morphological measures and within the performance measures. During aquaria trials, P. fuscus was found to be selective with respect to prey SL only, with larger individuals being selected significantly more often. Multi-species predator communities, however, were selective with respect to prey body weight, with heavier individuals being selected significantly more often than their lighter counterparts. Our results suggest that under controlled conditions, body length may be the most important prey characteristic influencing prey survival during predatory encounters with P. fuscus. In such cases, larger prey size may actually be a distinct disadvantage to survival. However, these relationships appear to be more complex under natural conditions, where the expression of prey characteristics, the selectivity fields of a number of different predators, their relative abundance, and

  12. Signaling by decorating webs: luring prey or deterring predators?

    OpenAIRE

    Ren-Chung Cheng; I-Min Tso

    2007-01-01

    Many organisms convey false signals to mislead their prey or predators. Some orb-weaving spiders build conspicuous structures on webs called decorations. Web decorations and spider colorations are both suggested to be important signals involved in interactions between spiders and other organisms. There are several hypotheses about the functions of signaling by decorations, among which prey attraction had received much support, but empirical evidence regarding predator defense is controversial...

  13. Mountain lions prey selectively on prion-infected mule deer

    OpenAIRE

    Krumm, Caroline E.; Conner, Mary M.; Hobbs, N. Thompson; Hunter, Don O.; Miller, Michael W.

    2009-01-01

    The possibility that predators choose prey selectively based on age or condition has been suggested but rarely tested. We examined whether mountain lions (Puma concolor) selectively prey upon mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) infected with chronic wasting disease, a prion disease. We located kill sites of mountain lions in the northern Front Range of Colorado, USA, and compared disease prevalence among lion-killed adult (?2 years old) deer with prevalence among sympatric deer taken by hunters i...

  14. Seasonal patterns of predation for gray wolves in the multi-prey system of Yellowstone National Park.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Metz, Matthew C; Smith, Douglas W; Vucetich, John A; Stahler, Daniel R; Peterson, Rolf O

    2012-05-01

    predation because of changes in prey vulnerability. Patterns of wolf predation were influenced by the nutritional condition of adult elk and the availability of smaller prey (i.e. elk calves, deer). We discuss how these patterns affect our overall understanding of predator and prey population dynamics. © 2012 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2012 British Ecological Society.

  15. Effect of Brood Age on Nestling Diet and Prey Composition in a Hedgerow Specialist Bird, the Barred Warbler Sylvia nisoria.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grzegorz Orłowski

    Full Text Available The composition and quality of food provided to nestling birds influence their growth and development and offers key insight into the ecological requirements of birds. One bird species whose feeding ecology is poorly understood is the Barred Warbler (Sylvia nisoria, which utilizes semi-natural shrubby vegetation in agroecosystems. Because Barred Warbler nestlings vary greatly in body mass we hypothesised that diet and prey properties (size, diversity, taxonomic composition, and chitin content and resulting body hardness and digestibility would differ as the nestlings aged. We quantified the diet based on faecal analysis, sampling faecal sacs from the nestlings pooled into three age classes: 2-3 days old, 4-6 d old, and 7-9 d old. Nestlings were provided a wide diversity of food and a strong relationship existed between food characteristics and nestling age. The youngest nestlings (2-3 d old had the lowest values of each dietary characteristic (diversity, number and total biomass of prey, and individual prey weight, that were significantly lower than the oldest nestlings (7-9 d old. Nestlings aged 4-6 d exhibited intermediate dietary characteristics. Differences in dietary composition of the six major food types showed marked differences between the individual broods and age categories. Percentages of the number and biomass of soft-bodied prey were highest in the diet of 2-3 d and 4-6 d old nestlings, and decreased with increasing age, whereas the opposite trend was observed in the percentage of intermediately and heavily chitinised prey. Parent Barred Warblers probably preferentially select soft-bodied prey for the youngest nestlings, and satisfy the greater energy demands of the older ones by providing them with a greater variety of prey containing more chitin, as well as plant food. The provisioning of less-readily digestible prey to older nestlings suggests that as the quality of food decreases the quantity increases, implying that the

  16. State space modeling of groundwater fluctuations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Berendrecht, W.L.

    2004-01-01

    Groundwater plays an important role in both urban and rural areas. It is therefore essential to monitor groundwater fluctuations. However, data that becomes available need to be analyzed further in order to extract specific information on the groundwater system. Until recently, simple linear time

  17. Fluctuation of heat current in Josephson junctions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Virtanen

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available We discuss the statistics of heat current between two superconductors at different temperatures connected by a generic weak link. As the electronic heat in superconductors is carried by Bogoliubov quasiparticles, the heat transport fluctuations follow the Levitov–Lesovik relation. We identify the energy-dependent quasiparticle transmission probabilities and discuss the resulting probability density and fluctuation relations of the heat current. We consider multichannel junctions, and find that heat transport in diffusive junctions is unique in that its statistics is independent of the phase difference between the superconductors.

  18. Existence and Uniqueness of Positive Periodic Solutions for a Delayed Predator-Prey Model with Dispersion and Impulses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhenguo Luo

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available An impulsive Lotka-Volterra type predator-prey model with prey dispersal in two-patch environments and time delays is investigated, where we assume the model of patches with a barrier only as far as the prey population is concerned, whereas the predator population has no barriers between patches. By applying the continuation theorem of coincidence degree theory and by means of a suitable Lyapunov functional, a set of easily verifiable sufficient conditions are obtained to guarantee the existence, uniqueness, and global stability of positive periodic solutions of the system. Some known results subject to the underlying systems without impulses are improved and generalized. As an application, we also give two examples to illustrate the feasibility of our main results.

  19. First experimental evidence that a harvestman (Arachnida: Opiliones detects odors of non-rotten dead prey by olfaction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thaiany Miranda Costa

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Harvestmen feed on live, dead and fresh, or decomposing animals, fungi, and plant matter, being very dependent on chemoreception to find food. Herein we performed an experiment to test if individuals of Discocyrtus pectinifemur Mello-Leitão, 1937 (Gonyleptidae (n = 23 behave differently when in contact with olfactory cues from different sources (rotten prey, non-rotten prey and a control. Using dead crickets in a box covered with a mesh, and recording the time the harvestmen spent in the vicinities of the box, we show that D. pectinifemur detects non-rotten prey and stays longer on it than on the other two treatments. Our results contrast with a previous study on another species, showing that we should not generalize results obtained for one species. Our data also suggest that olfactory receptors occur on the legs of these harvestmen and that D. pectinifemur might choose dietary items based on olfaction.

  20. Correlation length of magnetosheath fluctuations: Cluster statistics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O. Gutynska

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Magnetosheath parameters are usually described by gasdynamic or magnetohydrodynamic (MHD models but these models cannot account for one of the most important sources of magnetosheath fluctuations – the foreshock. Earlier statistical processing of a large amount of magnetosheath observations has shown that the magnetosheath magnetic field and plasma flow fluctuations downstream of the quasiparallel shock are much larger than those at the opposite flank. These studies were based on the observations of a single spacecraft and thus they could not provide full information on propagation of the fluctuations through the magnetosheath.

    We present the results of a statistical survey of the magnetosheath magnetic field fluctuations using two years of Cluster observations. We discuss the dependence of the cross-correlation coefficients between different spacecraft pairs on the orientation of the separation vector with respect to the average magnetic field and plasma flow vectors and other parameters. We have found that the correlation length does not exceed ~1 RE in the analyzed frequency range (0.001–0.125 Hz and does not depend significantly on the magnetic field or plasma flow direction. A close connection of cross-correlation coefficients computed in the magnetosheath with the cross-correlation coefficients between a solar wind monitor and a magnetosheath spacecraft suggests that solar wind structures persist on the background of magnetosheath fluctuations.

  1. Correlation length of magnetosheath fluctuations: Cluster statistics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O. Gutynska

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Magnetosheath parameters are usually described by gasdynamic or magnetohydrodynamic (MHD models but these models cannot account for one of the most important sources of magnetosheath fluctuations – the foreshock. Earlier statistical processing of a large amount of magnetosheath observations has shown that the magnetosheath magnetic field and plasma flow fluctuations downstream of the quasiparallel shock are much larger than those at the opposite flank. These studies were based on the observations of a single spacecraft and thus they could not provide full information on propagation of the fluctuations through the magnetosheath. We present the results of a statistical survey of the magnetosheath magnetic field fluctuations using two years of Cluster observations. We discuss the dependence of the cross-correlation coefficients between different spacecraft pairs on the orientation of the separation vector with respect to the average magnetic field and plasma flow vectors and other parameters. We have found that the correlation length does not exceed ~1 RE in the analyzed frequency range (0.001–0.125 Hz and does not depend significantly on the magnetic field or plasma flow direction. A close connection of cross-correlation coefficients computed in the magnetosheath with the cross-correlation coefficients between a solar wind monitor and a magnetosheath spacecraft suggests that solar wind structures persist on the background of magnetosheath fluctuations.

  2. Fluctuation Relations for Currents

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinitsyn, Nikolai; Akimov, Alexei; Chernyak, Vladimir; Chertkov, Michael

    2011-03-01

    We consider a non-equilibrium statistical system on a graph or a network. Identical particles are injected, interact with each other, traverse, and leave the graph in a stochastic manner described in terms of Poisson rates, possibly strongly dependent on time and instantaneous occupation numbers at the nodes of the graph. We show that the system demonstrates a profound statistical symmetry, leading to new Fluctuation Relations that originate from the supersymmetry and the principle of the geometric universality of currents rather than from the relations between probabilities of forward and reverse trajectories. NSF/ECCS-0925618, NSF/CHE-0808910 and DOE at LANL under Contract No. DE-AC52-06NA25396.

  3. Fluctuations in email size

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matsubara, Yoshitsugu; Musashi, Yasuo

    2017-12-01

    The purpose of this study is to explain fluctuations in email size. We have previously investigated the long-term correlations between email send requests and data flow in the system log of the primary staff email server at a university campus, finding that email size frequency follows a power-law distribution with two inflection points, and that the power-law property weakens the correlation of the data flow. However, the mechanism underlying this fluctuation is not completely understood. We collected new log data from both staff and students over six academic years and analyzed the frequency distribution thereof, focusing on the type of content contained in the emails. Furthermore, we obtained permission to collect "Content-Type" log data from the email headers. We therefore collected the staff log data from May 1, 2015 to July 31, 2015, creating two subdistributions. In this paper, we propose a model to explain these subdistributions, which follow log-normal-like distributions. In the log-normal-like model, email senders -consciously or unconsciously- regulate the size of new email sentences according to a normal distribution. The fitting of the model is acceptable for these subdistributions, and the model demonstrates power-law properties for large email sizes. An analysis of the length of new email sentences would be required for further discussion of our model; however, to protect user privacy at the participating organization, we left this analysis for future work. This study provides new knowledge on the properties of email sizes, and our model is expected to contribute to the decision on whether to establish upper size limits in the design of email services.

  4. Memory for multiple cache locations and prey quantities in a food-hoarding songbird

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicola eArmstrong

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Most animals can discriminate between pairs of numbers that are each less than four without training. However, North Island robins (Petroica longipes, a food hoarding songbird endemic to New Zealand, can discriminate between quantities of items as high as eight without training. Here we investigate whether robins are capable of other complex quantity discrimination tasks. We test whether their ability to discriminate between small quantities declines with 1. the number of cache sites containing prey rewards and 2. the length of time separating cache creation and retrieval (retention interval. Results showed that subjects generally performed above chance expectations. They were equally able to discriminate between different combinations of prey quantities that were hidden from view in 2, 3 and 4 cache sites from between 1, 10 and 60 seconds. Overall results indicate that North Island robins can process complex quantity information involving more than two discrete quantities of items for up to one minute long retention intervals without training.

  5. Prediction of fish biomass, harvest and prey--predator relations in reservoirs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jenkins, R.M.

    1977-01-01

    Regression analyses of the effect of total dissolved solids on fish standing crops in 166 reservoirs produced formulas with coefficients of determination of 0.63 to 0.81. These formulas provide indexes to average biotic conditions and help to identify stressed aquatic environments. Simple predictive formulas are also presented for clupeid crops in various reservoir types, as clupeids are the fishes most frequently impinged or entrained at southern power plants. A method of calculating the adequacy of the available prey crop in relation to the predator crop is advanced to further aid in identification of perturbed prey populations. Assessment of stress as reflected by changes in sport fishing success can also be approached by comparison of the predicted harvest potential with actual fish harvest data. Use of these predictive indexes is recommended until more elaborate models are developed to identify power plant effects

  6. Fluctuating Thermodynamics for Biological Processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ham, Sihyun

    Because biomolecular processes are largely under thermodynamic control, dynamic extension of thermodynamics is necessary to uncover the mechanisms and driving factors of fluctuating processes. The fluctuating thermodynamics technology presented in this talk offers a practical means for the thermodynamic characterization of conformational dynamics in biomolecules. The use of fluctuating thermodynamics has the potential to provide a comprehensive picture of fluctuating phenomena in diverse biological processes. Through the application of fluctuating thermodynamics, we provide a thermodynamic perspective on the misfolding and aggregation of the various proteins associated with human diseases. In this talk, I will present the detailed concepts and applications of the fluctuating thermodynamics technology for elucidating biological processes. This work was supported by Samsung Science and Technology Foundation under Project Number SSTF-BA1401-13.

  7. Echolocating bats use a nearly time-optimal strategy to intercept prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kaushik Ghose

    2006-05-01

    Full Text Available Acquisition of food in many animal species depends on the pursuit and capture of moving prey. Among modern humans, the pursuit and interception of moving targets plays a central role in a variety of sports, such as tennis, football, Frisbee, and baseball. Studies of target pursuit in animals, ranging from dragonflies to fish and dogs to humans, have suggested that they all use a constant bearing (CB strategy to pursue prey or other moving targets. CB is best known as the interception strategy employed by baseball outfielders to catch ballistic fly balls. CB is a time-optimal solution to catch targets moving along a straight line, or in a predictable fashion--such as a ballistic baseball, or a piece of food sinking in water. Many animals, however, have to capture prey that may make evasive and unpredictable maneuvers. Is CB an optimum solution to pursuing erratically moving targets? Do animals faced with such erratic prey also use CB? In this paper, we address these questions by studying prey capture in an insectivorous echolocating bat. Echolocating bats rely on sonar to pursue and capture flying insects. The bat's prey may emerge from foliage for a brief time, fly in erratic three-dimensional paths before returning to cover. Bats typically take less than one second to detect, localize and capture such insects. We used high speed stereo infra-red videography to study the three dimensional flight paths of the big brown bat, Eptesicus fuscus, as it chased erratically moving insects in a dark laboratory flight room. We quantified the bat's complex pursuit trajectories using a simple delay differential equation. Our analysis of the pursuit trajectories suggests that bats use a constant absolute target direction strategy during pursuit. We show mathematically that, unlike CB, this approach minimizes the time it takes for a pursuer to intercept an unpredictably moving target. Interestingly, the bat's behavior is similar to the interception strategy

  8. Making inference from wildlife collision data: inferring predator absence from prey strikes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Caley

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Wildlife collision data are ubiquitous, though challenging for making ecological inference due to typically irreducible uncertainty relating to the sampling process. We illustrate a new approach that is useful for generating inference from predator data arising from wildlife collisions. By simply conditioning on a second prey species sampled via the same collision process, and by using a biologically realistic numerical response functions, we can produce a coherent numerical response relationship between predator and prey. This relationship can then be used to make inference on the population size of the predator species, including the probability of extinction. The statistical conditioning enables us to account for unmeasured variation in factors influencing the runway strike incidence for individual airports and to enable valid comparisons. A practical application of the approach for testing hypotheses about the distribution and abundance of a predator species is illustrated using the hypothesized red fox incursion into Tasmania, Australia. We estimate that conditional on the numerical response between fox and lagomorph runway strikes on mainland Australia, the predictive probability of observing no runway strikes of foxes in Tasmania after observing 15 lagomorph strikes is 0.001. We conclude there is enough evidence to safely reject the null hypothesis that there is a widespread red fox population in Tasmania at a population density consistent with prey availability. The method is novel and has potential wider application.

  9. Big Bang or vacuum fluctuation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zel'dovich, Ya.B.

    1980-01-01

    Some general properties of vacuum fluctuations in quantum field theory are described. The connection between the ''energy dominance'' of the energy density of vacuum fluctuations in curved space-time and the presence of singularity is discussed. It is pointed out that a de-Sitter space-time (with the energy density of the vacuum fluctuations in the Einstein equations) that matches the expanding Friedman solution may describe the history of the Universe before the Big Bang. (P.L.)

  10. Thermodynamic theory of equilibrium fluctuations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mishin, Y.

    2015-01-01

    The postulational basis of classical thermodynamics has been expanded to incorporate equilibrium fluctuations. The main additional elements of the proposed thermodynamic theory are the concept of quasi-equilibrium states, a definition of non-equilibrium entropy, a fundamental equation of state in the entropy representation, and a fluctuation postulate describing the probability distribution of macroscopic parameters of an isolated system. Although these elements introduce a statistical component that does not exist in classical thermodynamics, the logical structure of the theory is different from that of statistical mechanics and represents an expanded version of thermodynamics. Based on this theory, we present a regular procedure for calculations of equilibrium fluctuations of extensive parameters, intensive parameters and densities in systems with any number of fluctuating parameters. The proposed fluctuation formalism is demonstrated by four applications: (1) derivation of the complete set of fluctuation relations for a simple fluid in three different ensembles; (2) fluctuations in finite-reservoir systems interpolating between the canonical and micro-canonical ensembles; (3) derivation of fluctuation relations for excess properties of grain boundaries in binary solid solutions, and (4) derivation of the grain boundary width distribution for pre-melted grain boundaries in alloys. The last two applications offer an efficient fluctuation-based approach to calculations of interface excess properties and extraction of the disjoining potential in pre-melted grain boundaries. Possible future extensions of the theory are outlined.

  11. The importance of lipid-rich fish prey for Cape gannet chick growth : are fishery discards an alternative?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mullers, Ralf H. E.; Navarro, Rene A.; Crawford, Robert J. M.; Underhill, Les G.

    2009-01-01

    A recent decline in population numbers of Cape gannets (Morus capensis) breeding off the west coast of South Africa coincided with decreased availability of lipid-rich fish prey: anchovy (Engraulis encrasicolus) and sardine (Sardinops sagax). Seabirds can use fishery discards as an alternative, but

  12. Do lions Panthera leo actively select prey or do prey preferences simply reflect chance responses via evolutionary adaptations to optimal foraging?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayward, Matt W; Hayward, Gina J; Tambling, Craig J; Kerley, Graham I H

    2011-01-01

    Research on coursing predators has revealed that actions throughout the predatory behavioral sequence (using encounter rate, hunting rate, and kill rate as proxy measures of decisions) drive observed prey preferences. We tested whether similar actions drive the observed prey preferences of a stalking predator, the African lion Panthera leo. We conducted two 96 hour, continuous follows of lions in Addo Elephant National Park seasonally from December 2003 until November 2005 (16 follows), and compared prey encounter rate with prey abundance, hunt rate with prey encounter rate, and kill rate with prey hunt rate for the major prey species in Addo using Jacobs' electivity index. We found that lions encountered preferred prey species far more frequently than expected based on their abundance, and they hunted these species more frequently than expected based on this higher encounter rate. Lions responded variably to non-preferred and avoided prey species throughout the predatory sequence, although they hunted avoided prey far less frequently than expected based on the number of encounters of them. We conclude that actions of lions throughout the predatory behavioural sequence, but particularly early on, drive the prey preferences that have been documented for this species. Once a hunt is initiated, evolutionary adaptations to the predator-prey interactions drive hunting success.

  13. Magnetic fluctuations associated with density fluctuations in the tokamak edge

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Y.J.; Gentle, K.W.; Ritz, C.P.; Rhodes, T.L.; Bengtson, R.D.

    1989-01-01

    Electrostatic density and potential fluctuations occurring with high amplitude near the edge of a tokamak are correlated with components of the fluctuating magnetic field measured outside the limiter radius. It has been established that this turbulence is associated with fluctuations in current as well as density and potential. The correlation extends for substantial toroidal distances, but only if the probes are displaced approximately along field lines, consistent with the short coherence lengths poloidally but long coherence lengths parallel to the field which are characteristic for this turbulence. Furthermore, the correlation can be found only with density fluctuations measured inside the limiter radius; density fluctuations behind the limiter have no detectable magnetic concomitant for the toroidally spaced probes used here. (author). Letter-to-the-editor. 12 refs, 3 figs

  14. Disentangling mite predator-prey relationships by multiplex PCR.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pérez-Sayas, Consuelo; Pina, Tatiana; Gómez-Martínez, María A; Camañes, Gemma; Ibáñez-Gual, María V; Jaques, Josep A; Hurtado, Mónica A

    2015-11-01

    Gut content analysis using molecular techniques can help elucidate predator-prey relationships in situations in which other methodologies are not feasible, such as in the case of trophic interactions between minute species such as mites. We designed species-specific primers for a mite community occurring in Spanish citrus orchards comprising two herbivores, the Tetranychidae Tetranychus urticae and Panonychus citri, and six predatory mites belonging to the Phytoseiidae family; these predatory mites are considered to be these herbivores' main biological control agents. These primers were successfully multiplexed in a single PCR to test the range of predators feeding on each of the two prey species. We estimated prey DNA detectability success over time (DS50), which depended on the predator-prey combination and ranged from 0.2 to 18 h. These values were further used to weight prey detection in field samples to disentangle the predatory role played by the most abundant predators (i.e. Euseius stipulatus and Phytoseiulus persimilis). The corrected predation value for E. stipulatus was significantly higher than for P. persimilis. However, because this 1.5-fold difference was less than that observed regarding their sevenfold difference in abundance, we conclude that P. persimilis is the most effective predator in the system; it preyed on tetranychids almost five times more frequently than E. stipulatus did. The present results demonstrate that molecular tools are appropriate to unravel predator-prey interactions in tiny species such as mites, which include important agricultural pests and their predators. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. Prey handling using whole-body fluid dynamics in batoids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilga, Cheryl D; Maia, Anabela; Nauwelaerts, Sandra; Lauder, George V

    2012-02-01

    Fluid flow generated by body movements is a foraging tactic that has been exploited by many benthic species. In this study, the kinematics and hydrodynamics of prey handling behavior in little skates, Leucoraja erinacea, and round stingrays, Urobatis halleri, are compared using kinematics and particle image velocimetry. Both species use the body to form a tent to constrain the prey with the pectoral fin edges pressed against the substrate. Stingrays then elevate the head, which increases the volume between the body and the substrate to generate suction, while maintaining pectoral fin contact with the substrate. Meanwhile, the tip of the rostrum is curled upwards to create an opening where fluid is drawn under the body, functionally analogous to suction-feeding fishes. Skates also rotate the rostrum upwards although with the open rostral sides and the smaller fin area weaker fluid flow is generated. However, skates also use a rostral strike behavior in which the rostrum is rapidly rotated downwards pushing fluid towards the substrate to potentially stun or uncover prey. Thus, both species use the anterior portion of the body to direct fluid flow to handle prey albeit in different ways, which may be explained by differences in morphology. Rostral stiffness and pectoral fin insertion onto the rostrum differ between skates and rays and this corresponds to behavioral differences in prey handling resulting in distinct fluid flow patterns. The flexible muscular rostrum and greater fin area of stingrays allow more extensive use of suction to handle prey while the stiff cartilaginous rostrum of skates lacking extensive fin insertion is used as a paddle to strike prey as well as to clear away sand cover. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  16. Preference alters consumptive effects of predators: top-down effects of a native crab on a system of native and introduced prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emily W Grason

    Full Text Available Top-down effects of predators in systems depend on the rate at which predators consume prey, and on predator preferences among available prey. In invaded communities, these parameters might be difficult to predict because ecological relationships are typically evolutionarily novel. We examined feeding rates and preferences of a crab native to the Pacific Northwest, Cancer productus, among four prey items: two invasive species of oyster drill (the marine whelks Urosalpinx cinerea and Ocenebra inornata and two species of oyster (Crassostrea gigas and Ostrea lurida that are also consumed by U. cinerea and O. inornata. This system is also characterized by intraguild predation because crabs are predators of drills and compete with them for prey (oysters. When only the oysters were offered, crabs did not express a preference and consumed approximately 9 juvenile oysters crab(-1 day(-1. We then tested whether crabs preferred adult drills of either U. cinerea or O. inornata, or juvenile oysters (C. gigas. While crabs consumed drills and oysters at approximately the same rate when only one type of prey was offered, they expressed a strong preference for juvenile oysters over drills when they were allowed to choose among the three prey items. This preference for oysters might negate the positive indirect effects that crabs have on oysters by crabs consuming drills (trophic cascade because crabs have a large negative direct effect on oysters when crabs, oysters, and drills co-occur.

  17. Falco sparverius (Aves: Falconiformes preying upon Nyctinomops laticaudatus (Chiroptera: Molossidae

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    Ludmilla Moura de Souza Aguiar

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available In Brazil, there are two published references on the diet of American kestrel falcons, Falco sparverius Linnaeus, 1758, and one is for the Cerrado biome. The only mammal prey so far found in the diet of F. sparverius was the rodent Calomys tener (Winge, 1887. Herein we report on daily hunting activities by American kestrel falcons at a factory in the city of Uberlândia, state of Minas Gerais, southeastern Brazil, during an attempt to remove a bat colony. Two American kestrel falcons were observed on 14 occasions during two consecutive days: in two of these occasions, they were hunting in pairs, from 12:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. on 06/X/2003, and from 07:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. on 07/X/2003. During this period, American kestrel falcons made 27 hunting attempts and captured four bats of the same species, Nyctinomops laticaudatus (E. Geoffroy St.-Hilaire, 1805 (14.81% success. This report corroborates observations made in the Northern hemisphere, where bats are a dietary item of this falcon. Our findings are noteworthy because they reveal that the known natural predators of bats are few not only in Brazil but also worldwide.

  18. Population and prey of the Bengal Tiger Panthera tigris tigris (Linnaeus, 1758 (Carnivora: Felidae in the Sundarbans, Bangladesh

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M.M.H. Khan

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available The results from intensive small scale surveys are often difficult to extrapolate to wider spatial scales, yet an understanding at such scales is critical for assessing the minimum densities and populations of rare and wide ranging species. In this paper, the minimum size of population and minimum density estimates of Bengal Tigers Panthera tigris tigris and its prey were conducted from 2005 to 2007 using camera traps for 90 days and using distance sampling surveys for over 200 days, respectively. The results were extrapolated from the core study area in Katka-Kochikhali, southeastern Sundarbans, to five additional sites using indices of abundance. With the use of 10 camera-traps at 15 trap-points, field data provided a total of 829 photos, including seven photos of five individual tigers. A total of 5.0 (SE = 0.98 tigers (adults and sub-adults are thus estimated in the core area with an estimated density of 4.8 tigers/100km2. Distance sampling surveys conducted on large mammalian prey species obtained an overall density estimate of 27.9 individuals/km2 and a biomass density of 1,037kg/km2. Indices of abundance were obtained by using tiger track sighting rates (number of tracks/km of riverbank and the sighting rates of the prey species (number of prey/km of riverbank in the core area and in five additional sites across the region. The densities of tiger tracks and sighting rates of prey were strongly correlated suggesting a wide scale relationship between predator and prey in the region. By combining the estimates of absolute density with indices of abundance, an average of 3.7 tigers/100km2 across the region is estimated, which given an area of 5,770km2, predicts a minimum of approximately 200 tigers in the Bangladesh Sundarbans.

  19. African vultures don't follow migratory herds: scavenger habitat use is not mediated by prey abundance.

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    Corinne J Kendall

    Full Text Available The ongoing global decline in vulture populations raises major conservation concerns, but little is known about the factors that mediate scavenger habitat use, in particular the importance of abundance of live prey versus prey mortality. We test this using data from the Serengeti-Mara ecosystem in East Africa. The two hypotheses that prey abundance or prey mortality are the main drivers of vulture habitat use provide alternative predictions. If vultures select areas based only on prey abundance, we expect tracked vultures to remain close to herds of migratory wildebeest regardless of season. However, if vultures select areas where mortality rates are greatest then we expect vultures to select the driest regions, where animals are more likely to die of starvation, and to be attracted to migratory wildebeest only during the dry season when wildebeest mortality is greatest. We used data from GSM-GPS transmitters to assess the relationship between three vulture species and migratory wildebeest in the Mara-Serengeti ecosystem. Results indicate that vultures preferentially cluster around migratory herds only during the dry season, when herds experience their highest mortality. Additionally during the wet season, Ruppell's and Lappet-faced vultures select relatively dry areas, based on Normalized Difference Vegetation Index, whereas White-backed vultures preferred wetter areas during the wet season. Differences in habitat use among species may mediate coexistence in this scavenger guild. In general, our results suggest that prey abundance is not the primary driver of avian scavenger habitat use. The apparent reliance of vultures on non-migratory ungulates during the wet season has important conservation implications for vultures in light of on-going declines in non-migratory ungulate species and use of poisons in unprotected areas.

  20. The scent of wolves: pyrazine analogs induce avoidance and vigilance behaviors in prey

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kazumi eOsada

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The common grey wolf (Canis lupus is an apex predator located at the top of the food chain in the Northern Hemisphere. It preys on rodents, rabbits, ungulates, and many other kinds of mammal. However, the behavioral evidence for, and the chemical basis of, the fear-inducing impact of wolf urine on prey are unclear. Recently, the pyrazine analogs 2, 6-dimethylpyrazine, 2, 3, 5-trimethylpyrazine and 3-ethyl-2, 5-dimethyl pyrazine were identified as kairomones in the urine of wolves. When mice were confronted with a mixture of purified pyrazine analogs, vigilance behaviors, including freezing and excitation of neurons at the accessory olfactory bulb, were markedly increased. Additionally, the odor of the pyrazine cocktail effectively suppressed the approach of deer to a feeding area, and for those close to the feeding area elicited fear-related behaviors such as the tail-flag, flight, and jump actions. In this review, we discuss the transfer of chemical information from wolf to prey through the novel kairomones identified in wolf urine and also compare the characteristics of wolf kairomones with other predator-produced kairomones that affect rodents.

  1. Competition and Facilitation between a Disease and a Predator in a Stunted Prey Population.

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    Maarten C Boerlijst

    Full Text Available The role of diseases and parasites has received relatively little attention in modelling ecological dynamics despite mounting evidence of their importance in structuring communities. In contrast to predators, parasites do not necessarily kill their host but instead they may change host life history. Here, we study the impact of a parasite that selectively infects juvenile prey individuals and prevents them from maturing into adults. The model is inspired by the Ligula intestinalis tape worm and its cyprinid fish host Rutilis rutilis. We demonstrate that the parasite can promote as well as demote the so-called stunting in its host population, that is, the accumulation of juvenile prey, which leads to strong exploitation competition and consequently to a bottleneck in maturation. If competition between infected and uninfected individuals is strong, stunting will be enhanced and bistability between a stunted and non-stunted prey population occurs. In this case, the disease competes with the predator of its host species, possibly leading to predator extinction. In contrast, if the competition between infected and uninfected individuals is weak, the stunting is relieved, and epi-zoonotic cycles will occur, with recurrent epidemic outbreaks. Here, the disease facilitates the predator, and predator density will be substantially increased. We discuss the implications of our results for the dynamics and structure of the natural Ligula-Roach system.

  2. A predator from East Africa that chooses malaria vectors as preferred prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ximena J Nelson

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: All vectors of human malaria, a disease responsible for more than one million deaths per year, are female mosquitoes from the genus Anopheles. Evarcha culicivora is an East African jumping spider (Salticidae that feeds indirectly on vertebrate blood by selecting blood-carrying female mosquitoes as preferred prey. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: By testing with motionless lures made from mounting dead insects in lifelike posture on cork discs, we show that E. culicivora selects Anopheles mosquitoes in preference to other mosquitoes and that this predator can identify Anopheles by static appearance alone. Tests using active (grooming virtual mosquitoes rendered in 3-D animation show that Anopheles' characteristic resting posture is an important prey-choice cue for E. culicivora. Expression of the spider's preference for Anopheles varies with the spider's size, varies with its prior feeding condition and is independent of the spider gaining a blood meal. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This is the first experimental study to show that a predator of any type actively chooses Anopheles as preferred prey, suggesting that specialized predators having a role in the biological control of disease vectors is a realistic possibility.

  3. Towards predicting wading bird densities from predicted prey densities in a post-barrage Severn estuary

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Goss-Custard, J.D.; McGrorty, S.; Clarke, R.T.; Pearson, B.; Rispin, W.E.; Durell, S.E.A. le V. dit; Rose, R.J.; Warwick, R.M.; Kirby, R.

    1991-01-01

    A winter survey of seven species of wading birds in six estuaries in south-west England was made to develop a method for predicting bird densities should a tidal power barrage be built on the Severn estuary. Within most estuaries, bird densities correlated with the densities of widely taken prey species. A barrage would substantially reduce the area of intertidal flats available at low water for the birds to feed but the invertebrate density could increase in the generally more benign post-barrage environmental conditions. Wader densities would have to increase approximately twofold to allow the same overall numbers of birds to remain post-barrage as occur on the Severn at present. Provisional estimates are given of the increases in prey density required to allow bird densities to increase by this amount. With the exception of the prey of dunlin, these fall well within the ranges of densities found in other estuaries, and so could in principle be attained in the post-barrage Severn. An attempt was made to derive equations with which to predict post-barrage densities of invertebrates from easily measured, static environmental variables. The fact that a site was in the Severn had a significant additional effect on invertebrate density in seven cases. This suggests that there is a special feature of the Severn, probably one associated with its highly dynamic nature. This factor must be identified if the post-barrage densities of invertebrates are to be successful predicted. (author)

  4. Jaguar interactions with pumas and prey at the northern edge of jaguars’ range

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    Carmina E. Gutiérrez-González

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available We present the first study that evaluates jaguar-puma interactions in the arid lands of northern Mexico, where jaguars have their northernmost breeding population and both predators are persecuted for livestock depredation. We tested whether jaguars are the dominant species in this unique ecosystem, where: (1 pumas outnumber jaguars, (2 pumas are better adapted to arid environments, and (3 jaguars and pumas are of similar size. We analyzed four years of data with two approaches; a two species conditional occupancy model and an activity patterns analysis. We used camera location and prey presence as covariates for jaguar and puma detection and presence probabilities. We also explored overlap in activities of predators and prey. Where both species were detected, peccary presence was positively correlated with both jaguar and puma presence, whereas in areas where jaguars were detected but pumas were not, deer presence explained the probability of jaguar presence. We found that both predators were more likely to co-occur together than to be found independently, and so we rejected the hypothesis that jaguars were the dominant species in our study area. Predators were mainly nocturnal and their activity patterns overlapped by 60%. Jaguar, as compared with puma, overlapped more with deer and calves; puma overlapped with calves more than with other prey, suggesting a preference. We believe exploring predator relationships at different scales may help elucidate mechanisms that regulate their coexistence.

  5. Phytophagy of the predator Podisus nigrispinus (Dallas, 1851 (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae fed on prey and Brassicaceae

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    J. F. J. Grigolli

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The purpose of this study was to investigate the development and reproduction of the zoophytophagous predator Podisus nigrispinus (Dallas (Heteroptera: Pentatomidae fed kale, broccoli and cabbage affects its. Nymphs and adults of this predator were fed on larvae of Plutella xylostella (L. (Lepidoptera: Plutellidae as prey with kale, cabbage, or broccoli. In the nymph period, the duration and prey consumption were similar with all the Brassicacea cultivar. However, nymph viability was higher for predators with broccoli leaves. The mean weight of 5th-instar nymphs, newly emerged females and the sex ratio were similar among the Brassicacea cultivars, while newly emerged males were heavier with kale and broccoli leaves. The supply of broccoli leaves resulted in greater oviposition, higher number of eggs per egg mass and longer longevity of P. nigrispinus males and females. Furthermore, the consumption of P. xylostella larvae by adult predators was higher with these cultivars. The net reproductive rate (R0 and mean generation time (T were highest for predators with prey and broccoli leaves. The reproductive parameters of P. nigrispinus were enhanced when fed on P. xylostella larvae with and broccoli leaves, which can be an alternative diet in laboratory rearing of this predator.

  6. Stable oscillations of a predator-prey probabilistic cellular automaton: a mean-field approach

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tome, Tania; Carvalho, Kelly C de

    2007-01-01

    We analyze a probabilistic cellular automaton describing the dynamics of coexistence of a predator-prey system. The individuals of each species are localized over the sites of a lattice and the local stochastic updating rules are inspired by the processes of the Lotka-Volterra model. Two levels of mean-field approximations are set up. The simple approximation is equivalent to an extended patch model, a simple metapopulation model with patches colonized by prey, patches colonized by predators and empty patches. This approximation is capable of describing the limited available space for species occupancy. The pair approximation is moreover able to describe two types of coexistence of prey and predators: one where population densities are constant in time and another displaying self-sustained time oscillations of the population densities. The oscillations are associated with limit cycles and arise through a Hopf bifurcation. They are stable against changes in the initial conditions and, in this sense, they differ from the Lotka-Volterra cycles which depend on initial conditions. In this respect, the present model is biologically more realistic than the Lotka-Volterra model

  7. Owls may use faeces and prey feathers to signal current reproduction.

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    Vincenzo Penteriani

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Many animals communicate by marking focal elements of their home range with different kinds of materials. Visual signaling has been demonstrated to play a previously unrecognized role in the intraspecific communication of eagle owls (Bubo bubo, in both territorial and parent-offspring contexts. Visual signals may play a role in a variety of circumstances in this crepuscular and nocturnal species. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here, we report that a large amount of extremely visible white faeces and prey feathers appear during the breeding season on posts and plucking sites in proximity to the nest, potentially representing a way for eagle owls to mark their territory. We present descriptive and experimental evidence showing that faeces and prey remains could act as previously unrecognized visual signals in a nocturnal avian predator. This novel signaling behavior could indicate the owls' current reproductive status to potential intruders, such as other territorial owls or non-breeding floaters. Faeces and prey feather markings may also advertise an owl's reproductive status or function in mate-mate communication. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: We speculate that faeces marks and plucking may represent an overlooked but widespread method for communicating current reproduction to conspecifics. Such marking behavior may be common in birds, and we may now be exploring other questions and mechanisms in territoriality.

  8. Arboreal ants use the "Velcro(R principle" to capture very large prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alain Dejean

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Plant-ants live in a mutualistic association with host plants known as "myrmecophytes" that provide them with a nesting place and sometimes with extra-floral nectar (EFN and/or food bodies (FBs; the ants can also attend sap-sucking Hemiptera for their honeydew. In return, plant-ants, like most other arboreal ants, protect their host plants from defoliators. To satisfy their nitrogen requirements, however, some have optimized their ability to capture prey in the restricted environment represented by the crowns of trees by using elaborate hunting techniques. In this study, we investigated the predatory behavior of the ant Azteca andreae which is associated with the myrmecophyte Cecropia obtusa. We noted that up to 8350 ant workers per tree hide side-by-side beneath the leaf margins of their host plant with their mandibles open, waiting for insects to alight. The latter are immediately seized by their extremities, and then spread-eagled; nestmates are recruited to help stretch, carve up and transport prey. This group ambush hunting technique is particularly effective when the underside of the leaves is downy, as is the case for C. obtusa. In this case, the hook-shaped claws of the A. andreae workers and the velvet-like structure of the underside of the leaves combine to act like natural Velcro that is reinforced by the group ambush strategy of the workers, allowing them to capture prey of up to 13,350 times the mean weight of a single worker.

  9. Making inference from wildlife collision data: inferring predator absence from prey strikes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caley, Peter; Hosack, Geoffrey R; Barry, Simon C

    2017-01-01

    Wildlife collision data are ubiquitous, though challenging for making ecological inference due to typically irreducible uncertainty relating to the sampling process. We illustrate a new approach that is useful for generating inference from predator data arising from wildlife collisions. By simply conditioning on a second prey species sampled via the same collision process, and by using a biologically realistic numerical response functions, we can produce a coherent numerical response relationship between predator and prey. This relationship can then be used to make inference on the population size of the predator species, including the probability of extinction. The statistical conditioning enables us to account for unmeasured variation in factors influencing the runway strike incidence for individual airports and to enable valid comparisons. A practical application of the approach for testing hypotheses about the distribution and abundance of a predator species is illustrated using the hypothesized red fox incursion into Tasmania, Australia. We estimate that conditional on the numerical response between fox and lagomorph runway strikes on mainland Australia, the predictive probability of observing no runway strikes of foxes in Tasmania after observing 15 lagomorph strikes is 0.001. We conclude there is enough evidence to safely reject the null hypothesis that there is a widespread red fox population in Tasmania at a population density consistent with prey availability. The method is novel and has potential wider application.

  10. Charge Fluctuations in Nanoscale Capacitors

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Limmer, D.T.; Merlet, C.; Salanne, M.; Chandler, D.; Madden, P.A.; van Roij, R.H.H.G.; Rotenberg, B.

    2013-01-01

    The fluctuations of the charge on an electrode contain information on the microscopic correlations within the adjacent fluid and their effect on the electronic properties of the interface. We investigate these fluctuations using molecular dynamics simulations in a constant-potential ensemble with

  11. Fluctuating attention in Parkinson's disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Starrfelt, Randi; Aarsland, Dag; Janvin, Carmen

    2001-01-01

    Lewy body dementia (DLB), which share many clinical and pathological features with Parkinson’s disease (PD), is charac- terised by marked fluctuations in cognition and consciousness. Fluctuating cognition has not been formally studied in PD, although some studies indicate that PD patients show...

  12. Dominant glint based prey localization in horseshoe bats: a possible strategy for noise rejection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dieter Vanderelst

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Rhinolophidae or Horseshoe bats emit long and narrowband calls. Fluttering insect prey generates echoes in which amplitude and frequency shifts are present, i.e. glints. These glints are reliable cues about the presence of prey and also encode certain properties of the prey. In this paper, we propose that these glints, i.e. the dominant glints, are also reliable signals upon which to base prey localization. In contrast to the spectral cues used by many other bats, the localization cues in Rhinolophidae are most likely provided by self-induced amplitude modulations generated by pinnae movement. Amplitude variations in the echo not introduced by the moving pinnae can be considered as noise interfering with the localization process. The amplitude of the dominant glints is very stable. Therefore, these parts of the echoes contain very little noise. However, using only the dominant glints potentially comes at a cost. Depending on the flutter rate of the insect, a limited number of dominant glints will be present in each echo giving the bat a limited number of sample points on which to base localization. We evaluate the feasibility of a strategy under which Rhinolophidae use only dominant glints. We use a computational model of the echolocation task faced by Rhinolophidae. Our model includes the spatial filtering of the echoes by the morphology of the sonar apparatus of Rhinolophus rouxii as well as the amplitude modulations introduced by pinnae movements. Using this model, we evaluate whether the dominant glints provide Rhinolophidae with enough information to perform localization. Our simulations show that Rhinolophidae can use dominant glints in the echoes as carriers for self-induced amplitude modulations serving as localization cues. In particular, it is shown that the reduction in noise achieved by using only the dominant glints outweighs the information loss that occurs by sampling the echo.

  13. Plastic responses of a sessile prey to multiple predators: a field and experimental study.

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    Philipp Emanuel Hirsch

    Full Text Available Theory predicts that prey facing a combination of predators with different feeding modes have two options: to express a response against the feeding mode of the most dangerous predator, or to express an intermediate response. Intermediate phenotypes protect equally well against several feeding modes, rather than providing specific protection against a single predator. Anti-predator traits that protect against a common feeding mode displayed by all predators should be expressed regardless of predator combination, as there is no need for trade-offs.We studied phenotypic anti-predator responses of zebra mussels to predation threat from a handling-time-limited (crayfish and a gape-size-limited (roach predator. Both predators dislodge mussels from the substrate but diverge in their further feeding modes. Mussels increased expression of a non-specific defense trait (attachment strength against all combinations of predators relative to a control. In response to roach alone, mussels showed a tendency to develop a weaker and more elongated shell. In response to crayfish, mussels developed a harder and rounder shell. When exposed to either a combination of predators or no predator, mussels developed an intermediate phenotype. Mussel growth rate was positively correlated with an elongated weaker shell and negatively correlated with a round strong shell, indicating a trade-off between anti-predator responses. Field observations of prey phenotypes revealed the presence of both anti-predator phenotypes and the trade-off with growth, but intra-specific population density and bottom substrate had a greater influence than predator density.Our results show that two different predators can exert both functionally equivalent and inverse selection pressures on a single prey. Our field study suggests that abiotic factors and prey population density should be considered when attempting to explain phenotypic diversity in the wild.

  14. Biomechanics of predator-prey arms race in lion, zebra, cheetah and impala

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Alan M.; Hubel, Tatjana Y.; Wilshin, Simon D.; Lowe, John C.; Lorenc, Maja; Dewhirst, Oliver P.; Bartlam-Brooks, Hattie L. A.; Diack, Rebecca; Bennitt, Emily; Golabek, Krystyna A.; Woledge, Roger C.; McNutt, J. Weldon; Curtin, Nancy A.; West, Timothy G.

    2018-02-01

    The fastest and most manoeuvrable terrestrial animals are found in savannah habitats, where predators chase and capture running prey. Hunt outcome and success rate are critical to survival, so both predator and prey should evolve to be faster and/or more manoeuvrable. Here we compare locomotor characteristics in two pursuit predator-prey pairs, lion-zebra and cheetah-impala, in their natural savannah habitat in Botswana. We show that although cheetahs and impalas were universally more athletic than lions and zebras in terms of speed, acceleration and turning, within each predator-prey pair, the predators had 20% higher muscle fibre power than prey, 37% greater acceleration and 72% greater deceleration capacity than their prey. We simulated hunt dynamics with these data and showed that hunts at lower speeds enable prey to use their maximum manoeuvring capacity and favour prey survival, and that the predator needs to be more athletic than its prey to sustain a viable success rate.

  15. The hydrodynamics of predator-prey interactions in zebrafish

    Science.gov (United States)

    McHenry, Matthew; Soto, Alberto; Carrillo, Andres; Byron, Margaret

    2017-11-01

    Hydrodynamics govern the behavior of fishes when they operate as predators or prey. In addition to the role of fluid forces in propulsion, fishes relay on flow stimuli to sense a predatory threat and to localize palatable prey. We have performed a series of experiments on zebrafish (Danio rerio) that aim to resolve the major factors that determine whether prey survive an encounter with a predator. Zebrafish serve as a model system in this pursuit because the adults prey on larvae of the same species and the larvae are often successful in evading the attacks of the adults. We use a combination of theoretical and experimental approaches to resolve the behavioral algorithms and kinematics that determined the outcome of these interactions. In this context, the hydrodynamics of intermediate Reynolds numbers largely determines the range of flow stimuli and the limits to locomotor performance at dictate prey survival. These principles have the potential to apply to a broad diversity of fishes and other aquatic animals. ONR: N00014-15-1-2249.

  16. Nonequilibrium fluctuations in a resistor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garnier, N; Ciliberto, S

    2005-06-01

    In small systems where relevant energies are comparable to thermal agitation, fluctuations are of the order of average values. In systems in thermodynamical equilibrium, the variance of these fluctuations can be related to the dissipation constant in the system, exploiting the fluctuation-dissipation theorem. In nonequilibrium steady systems, fluctuations theorems (FT) additionally describe symmetry properties of the probability density functions (PDFs) of the fluctuations of injected and dissipated energies. We experimentally probe a model system: an electrical dipole driven out of equilibrium by a small constant current I, and show that FT are experimentally accessible and valid. Furthermore, we stress that FT can be used to measure the dissipated power P = R I2 in the system by just studying the PDFs' symmetries.

  17. Prey size selection and cannibalistic behaviour of juvenile barramundi Lates calcarifer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ribeiro, F F; Qin, J G

    2015-05-01

    This study assessed the cannibalistic behaviour of juvenile barramundi Lates calcarifer and examined the relationship between prey size selection and energy gain of cannibals. Prey handling time and capture success by cannibals were used to estimate the ratio of energy gain to energy cost in prey selection. Cannibals selected smaller prey despite its capability of ingesting larger prey individuals. In behavioural analysis, prey handling time significantly increased with prey size, but it was not significantly affected by cannibal size. Conversely, capture success significantly decreased with the increase of both prey and cannibal sizes. The profitability indices showed that the smaller prey provides the most energy return for cannibals of all size classes. These results indicate that L. calcarifer cannibals select smaller prey for more profitable return. The behavioural analysis, however, indicates that L. calcarifer cannibals attack prey of all size at a similar rate but ingest smaller prey more often, suggesting that prey size selection is passively orientated rather than at the predator's choice. The increase of prey escape ability and morphological constraint contribute to the reduction of intracohort cannibalism as fish grow larger. This study contributes to the understanding of intracohort cannibalism and development of strategies to reduce fish cannibalistic mortalities. © 2015 The Fisheries Society of the British Isles.

  18. Comparative growth and development of spiders reared on live and dead prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Yu; Zhang, Fan; Gui, Shaolan; Qiao, Huping; Hose, Grant C

    2013-01-01

    Scavenging (feeding on dead prey) has been demonstrated across a number of spider families, yet the implications of feeding on dead prey for the growth and development of individuals and population is unknown. In this study we compare the growth, development, and predatory activity of two species of spiders that were fed on live and dead prey. Pardosa astrigera (Lycosidae) and Hylyphantes graminicola (Lyniphiidae) were fed live or dead fruit flies, Drosophila melanogaster. The survival of P. astrigera and H. graminicola was not affected by prey type. The duration of late instars of P. astrigera fed dead prey were longer and mature spiders had less protein content than those fed live prey, whereas there were no differences in the rate of H. graminicola development, but the mass of mature spiders fed dead prey was greater than those fed live prey. Predation rates by P. astrigera did not differ between the two prey types, but H. graminicola had a higher rate of predation on dead than alive prey, presumably because the dead flies were easier to catch and handle. Overall, the growth, development and reproduction of H. graminicola reared with dead flies was better than those reared on live flies, yet for the larger P. astrigera, dead prey may suit smaller instars but mature spiders may be best maintained with live prey. We have clearly demonstrated that dead prey may be suitable for rearing spiders, although the success of the spiders fed such prey appears size- and species specific.

  19. Inverse scattering problem in turbulent magnetic fluctuations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. A. Treumann

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available We apply a particular form of the inverse scattering theory to turbulent magnetic fluctuations in a plasma. In the present note we develop the theory, formulate the magnetic fluctuation problem in terms of its electrodynamic turbulent response function, and reduce it to the solution of a special form of the famous Gelfand–Levitan–Marchenko equation of quantum mechanical scattering theory. The last of these applies to transmission and reflection in an active medium. The theory of turbulent magnetic fluctuations does not refer to such quantities. It requires a somewhat different formulation. We reduce the theory to the measurement of the low-frequency electromagnetic fluctuation spectrum, which is not the turbulent spectral energy density. The inverse theory in this form enables obtaining information about the turbulent response function of the medium. The dynamic causes of the electromagnetic fluctuations are implicit to it. Thus, it is of vital interest in low-frequency magnetic turbulence. The theory is developed until presentation of the equations in applicable form to observations of turbulent electromagnetic fluctuations as input from measurements. Solution of the final integral equation should be done by standard numerical methods based on iteration. We point to the possibility of treating power law fluctuation spectra as an example. Formulation of the problem to include observations of spectral power densities in turbulence is not attempted. This leads to severe mathematical problems and requires a reformulation of inverse scattering theory. One particular aspect of the present inverse theory of turbulent fluctuations is that its structure naturally leads to spatial information which is obtained from the temporal information that is inherent to the observation of time series. The Taylor assumption is not needed here. This is a consequence of Maxwell's equations, which couple space and time evolution. The inversion procedure takes

  20. Quantum fluctuations from thermal fluctuations in Jacobson formalism

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Faizal, Mir [University of British Columbia-Okanagan, Irving K. Barber School of Arts and Sciences, Kelowna, BC (Canada); University of Lethbridge, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Lethbridge, AB (Canada); Ashour, Amani; Alcheikh, Mohammad [Damascus University, Mathematics Department, Faculty of Science, Damascus (Syrian Arab Republic); Alasfar, Lina [Universite Clermont Auvergne, Laboratoire de Physique Corpusculaire de Clermont-Ferrand, Aubiere (France); Alsaleh, Salwa; Mahroussah, Ahmed [King Saud University, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Riyadh (Saudi Arabia)

    2017-09-15

    In the Jacobson formalism general relativity is obtained from thermodynamics. This is done by using the Bekenstein-Hawking entropy-area relation. However, as a black hole gets smaller, its temperature will increase. This will cause the thermal fluctuations to also increase, and these will in turn correct the Bekenstein-Hawking entropy-area relation. Furthermore, with the reduction in the size of the black hole, quantum effects will also start to dominate. Just as the general relativity can be obtained from thermodynamics in the Jacobson formalism, we propose that the quantum fluctuations to the geometry can be obtained from thermal fluctuations. (orig.)

  1. Trophic interactions of the endangered Southern river otter ( Lontra provocax) in a Chilean Ramsar wetland inferred from prey sampling, fecal analysis, and stable isotopes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franco, Marcela; Guevara, Giovany; Correa, Loreto; Soto-Gamboa, Mauricio

    2013-04-01

    Non-invasive methodological approaches are highly recommended and commonly used to study the feeding ecology of elusive and threatened mammals. In this study, we use multiple lines of evidence to assess the feeding strategies of the endangered Southern river otter, by determining seasonal prey availability (electrofishing), analysis of undigested prey remains (spraints), and the use of stable isotopes (δ15N and δ13C) in otter spraints ( n = 262) and prey in a wetland ecosystem of southern Chile (39°49'S, 73°15'W). Fecal and isotopic analyses suggest that the otter diet is restricted to a few prey items, particularly the less-mobile, bottom-living, and larger prey such as crayfish ( Samastacus spinifrons, 86.11 %) and crabs ( Aegla spp., 32.45 %), supplemented opportunistically by cyprinids ( Cyprinus carpio, 9.55 %) and catfish ( Diplomystes camposensis, 5.66 %). The results suggest that the river otter is highly specialized in bottom foraging. Isotopic signatures of food sources and feces revealed a mid-upper trophic position for the Southern river otter, with either higher or lower δ15N values than their potential prey items. δ13C values for river otters were less enriched than their potential food resources. We suggest that due to their narrow trophic niche and possible dependence on only a few food items, this species may be highly vulnerable to the reduction in its prey populations. Finally, maintaining the ecological interactions between Southern river otters and their prey is considered a central priority for the survival of this endangered carnivore mammal.

  2. Fear on the move: predator hunting mode predicts variation in prey mortality and plasticity in prey spatial response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Jennifer R B; Ament, Judith M; Schmitz, Oswald J

    2014-01-01

    Ecologists have long searched for a framework of a priori species traits to help predict predator-prey interactions in food webs. Empirical evidence has shown that predator hunting mode and predator and prey habitat domain are useful traits for explaining predator-prey interactions. Yet, individual experiments have yet to replicate predator hunting mode, calling into question whether predator impacts can be attributed to hunting mode or merely species identity. We tested the effects of spider predators with sit-and-wait, sit-and-pursue and active hunting modes on grasshopper habitat domain, activity and mortality in a grassland system. We replicated hunting mode by testing two spider predator species of each hunting mode on the same grasshopper prey species. We observed grasshoppers with and without each spider species in behavioural cages and measured their mortality rates, movements and habitat domains. We likewise measured the movements and habitat domains of spiders to characterize hunting modes. We found that predator hunting mode explained grasshopper mortality and spider and grasshopper movement activity and habitat domain size. Sit-and-wait spider predators covered small distances over a narrow domain space and killed fewer grasshoppers than sit-and-pursue and active predators, which ranged farther distances across broader domains and killed more grasshoppers, respectively. Prey adjusted their activity levels and horizontal habitat domains in response to predator presence and hunting mode: sedentary sit-and-wait predators with narrow domains caused grasshoppers to reduce activity in the same-sized domain space; more mobile sit-and-pursue predators with broader domains caused prey to reduce their activity within a contracted horizontal (but not vertical) domain space; and highly mobile active spiders led grasshoppers to increase their activity across the same domain area. All predators impacted prey activity, and sit-and-pursue predators generated strong

  3. Predator and prey perception in copepods due to hydromechanical signals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kiørboe, Thomas; Visser, Andre

    1999-01-01

    of the different components of the fluid disturbance. We use this model to argue that prey perception depends on the absolute magnitude of the fluid velocity generated by the moving prey, while predator perception depends on the magnitude of one or several of the components of the fluid velocity gradients...... (deformation rate, vorticity, acceleration) generated by the predator. On the assumption that hydrodynamic disturbances are perceived through the mechanical bending of sensory setae, we estimate the magnitude of the signal strength due to each of the fluid disturbance components. We then derive equations...... for reaction distances as a function of threshold signal strength and the size and velocity of the prey or predator. We provide a conceptual framework for quantifying threshold signal strengths and, hence, perception distances. The model is illustrated by several examples, and we demonstrate, for example, (1...

  4. On multi-team predator-prey models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Elettreby, M.F.; Saker, S.H.; Ahmed, E.

    2005-05-01

    Many creatures form teams. This has, at least, two main advantages: the first is the improvement in foraging, since looking for food in a team is more efficient than doing it alone. The second is that living in a team reduces predation risk due to early spotting of predators and that existing in a team gives a higher probability that the predator will attack another member of the team. In this paper models are given where two teams of predators interact with two teams of preys. The teams of each group (predators or preys) help each other. In this paper we propose three different versions of the multi-team predator prey model. We study the equilibrium solutions, the conditions of their local asymptotic stability, persistence and the global stability of the solution of one of the models. Some numerical simulations are done. (author)

  5. Relationships of body lengths with mouth opening and prey length of nemipterid fishes (Regan, 1913 in the Gulf of Thailand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mithun Paul

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available This study aims to investigate the relationship among total length (TL of fish with mouth opening namely horizontal opening (MH, vertical opening (VH, mouth area (MA and fork length (FL of seven sympatric nemipterid fish species and to know the relationship between total length and consumed prey length of five sympatric species sampled from the Gulf of Thailand in 2015. A total 883 fish were investigated collected from both cruise surveys and fishing port survey. TL was linearly and log-linearly related with both MV and MH for three and four species, respectively. MA’s were always the log linear relation of TL and shapes were nearly oval for all species. FL in all TL-FL relationships were proportional to the TL’s in all species (r2 = 0.94, P  .5 and in invertebrate prey items for N. tambuloides (P > .5. So, this study clearly confirms that nemipterid fishes of different sizes feed on all different specific prey items according to its own body size and feed according to size class for prey items available nearby.

  6. Release from prey preservation behavior via prey switch allowed diversification of cuticular hydrocarbon profiles in digger wasps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wurdack, Mareike; Polidori, Carlo; Keller, Alexander; Feldhaar, Heike; Schmitt, Thomas

    2017-11-01

    The cuticle of insects is covered by a layer of hydrocarbons (CHC), whose original function is the protection from desiccation and pathogens. However, in most insects CHC profiles are species specific. While this variability among species was largely linked to communication and recognition functions, additional selective forces may shape insect CHC profiles. Here, we show that in Philanthinae digger wasps (Crabronidae) the CHC profile coevolved with a peculiar brood-care strategy. In particular, we found that the behavior to embalm prey stored in the nest with hydrocarbons is adaptive to protect larval food from fungi in those species hunting for Hymenoptera. The prey embalming secretion is identical in composition to the alkene-dominated CHC profile in these species, suggesting that their profile is adaptively conserved for this purpose. In contrast, prey embalming is not required in those species that switched to Coleoptera as prey. Released from this chemical brood-care strategy, Coleoptera-hunting species considerably diversified their CHC profiles. Differential needs to successfully protect prey types used as larval food have thus driven the diversification of CHCs profiles of female Philanthinae wasps. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first evidence of a direct link between selection pressure for food preservation and CHC diversity. © 2017 The Author(s). Evolution © 2017 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  7. Fluid Fuel Fluctuations in the Spherical Tank

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. D. Nguyen

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Many authors tried to solve a task concerning small fluctuations of the incompressible ideal liquid, which partially fills a stationary tank of any shape. There is a long list of references to this subject. The article presents a task solution on own fluctuations of liquid in spherical capacity, with boundary conditions on a free surface and a surface with a resistance – drain surface. Relevance of problem consists in assessment of influence of intra tank devices (measuring, intaking, damping devices, etc. on the liquid fuel fluctuations. The special attention is paid to finding the own values and frequencies of the equations of disturbed flow fluctuations with dissipation available on the boundary surfaces. In contrast to the previous examples, the lowering speed and the free surface area at undisturbed state are variable.The article also considers a variation formulation of the auxiliary boundary tasks. In solution of variation tasks, the attached Legendre's functions were used as coordinate functions. Further, after substitution of the variation tasks solution in the boundary conditions and the subsequent mathematical operations the characteristic equation was obtained. To obtain solutions of the cubic characteristic equation Cardano formulas were used. The article also considers the task on the own motions of liquid filling a capacity between two concentric spheres and flowing out via the intake in case there is a free surface. Reliability of the obtained numerical results is confirmed by comparison with calculation results of frequencies resulting from solutions of a task on the own fluctuations of liquid in the spherical capacity with the constant depth of liquid. All numerical calculations were performed using the Matlab environment.

  8. Fluctuation scaling, Taylor's law, and crime.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Quentin S Hanley

    Full Text Available Fluctuation scaling relationships have been observed in a wide range of processes ranging from internet router traffic to measles cases. Taylor's law is one such scaling relationship and has been widely applied in ecology to understand communities including trees, birds, human populations, and insects. We show that monthly crime reports in the UK show complex fluctuation scaling which can be approximated by Taylor's law relationships corresponding to local policing neighborhoods and larger regional and countrywide scales. Regression models applied to local scale data from Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire found that different categories of crime exhibited different scaling exponents with no significant difference between the two regions. On this scale, violence reports were close to a Poisson distribution (α = 1.057 ± 0.026 while burglary exhibited a greater exponent (α = 1.292 ± 0.029 indicative of temporal clustering. These two regions exhibited significantly different pre-exponential factors for the categories of anti-social behavior and burglary indicating that local variations in crime reports can be assessed using fluctuation scaling methods. At regional and countrywide scales, all categories exhibited scaling behavior indicative of temporal clustering evidenced by Taylor's law exponents from 1.43 ± 0.12 (Drugs to 2.094 ± 0081 (Other Crimes. Investigating crime behavior via fluctuation scaling gives insight beyond that of raw numbers and is unique in reporting on all processes contributing to the observed variance and is either robust to or exhibits signs of many types of data manipulation.

  9. Current density fluctuations and ambipolarity of transport

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shen, W.; Dexter, R.N.; Prager, S.C.

    1991-10-01

    The fluctuation in the plasma current density is measured in the MIST reversed field pinch experiment. Such fluctuations, and the measured radial profile of the k spectrum of magnetic fluctuations, supports the view and that low frequency fluctuations (f r >) demonstrates that radial particle transport from particle motion parallel to a fluctuating magnetic field is ambipolar over the full frequency range

  10. Multitrophic effects of calcium availability on invasive alien plants, birds, and bird prey items

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vince D' Amico; Greg Shriver; Jake Bowman; Meg Ballard; Whitney Wiest; Liz Tymkiw; Melissa. Miller

    2011-01-01

    Acid rain alters forest soil calcium concentrations in two ways: (1) hydrogen ions displace exchangeable calcium adsorbed to soil surfaces, and (2) aluminum is released to soil water by acid rain and displaces adsorbed calcium. This increases the absorption of aluminum by plant roots, and decreases the absorption of calcium, causing calcium to be more readily leached...

  11. A Palaearctic migratory raptor species tracks shifting prey availability within its wintering range in the Sahel

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Trierweiler, Christiane; Mullie, Wim C.; Drent, Rudi H.; Exo, Klaus-Michael; Komdeur, Jan; Bairlein, Franz; Harouna, Abdoulaye; de Bakker, Marinus; Koks, Ben J.

    Mid-winter movements of up to several hundreds of kilometres are typical for many migratory bird species wintering in Africa. Unpredictable temporary food concentrations are thought to result in random movements of such birds, whereas resightings and recoveries of marked birds suggest some degree of

  12. Regulation of the investment in carnivory in three aquatic Utricularia species: CO2 or prey availability?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 55, č. 1 (2015), s. 131-148 ISSN 0079-2047 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP504/11/0783 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : Aquatic carnivorous plants * growth experiment * foliar N and P content Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 0.442, year: 2015

  13. Revealing the role of predator interference in a predator-prey system with disease in prey population

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chakraborty, Subhendu; Kooi, B.W.; Biswas, B.

    2015-01-01

    Predation on a species subjected to an infectious disease can affect both the infection level and the population dynamics. There is an ongoing debate about the act of managing disease in natural populations through predation. Recent theoretical and empirical evidence shows that predation...... on infected populations can have both positive and negative influences on disease in prey populations. Here, we present a predator-prey system where the prey population is subjected to an infectious disease to explore the impact of predator on disease dynamics. Specifically, we investigate how...... on the strength of interference among predators, predators enhance or control disease outbreaks and population persistence. Moreover, the presence of multistable regimes makes the system very sensitive to perturbations and facilitates a number of regime shifts. Since, the habitat structure and the choice...

  14. Colour polymorphic lures exploit innate preferences for spectral versus luminance cues in dipteran prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Thomas E; Kemp, Darrell J

    2017-08-14

    Theory predicts that colour polymorphism may be favored by variation in the visual context under which signals are perceived. The context encompasses all environmental determinants of light availability and propagation, but also the dynamics of perception in receivers. Color vision involves the neural separation of information into spectral versus luminance channels, which often differentially guide specific tasks. Here we explicitly tested whether this discrete perceptual basis contributes to the maintenance of polymorphism in a prey-luring system. The orb-weaving spider Gasteracantha fornicata is known to attract a broad community of primarily dipteran prey due to their conspicuous banded dorsal signal. They occur in two morphs ("white" and "yellow") which should, respectively, generate greater luminance and color contrast in the dipteran eye. Given that arthropods often rely upon luminance-versus-spectral cues for relatively small-versus-large stimulus detection, we predicted a switch in relative attractiveness among morphs according to apparent spider size. Our experimental tests used colour-naïve individuals of two known prey species (Drosophila hydei and Musca domestica) in replicate Y-maze choice trials designed to manipulate the apparent size of spider models via the distance at which they are viewed. Initial trials confirmed that flies were attracted to each G. fornicata morph in single presentations. When given a simultaneous choice between morphs against a viewing background typical of those encountered in nature, flies exhibited no preference regardless of the visual angle subtended by models. However, when backgrounds were adjusted to nearer the extremes of those of each morph in the wild, flies were more attracted by white morphs when presented at longer range (consistent with a reliance on achromatic cues), yet were unbiased in their close-range choice. While not fully consistent with predictions (given the absence of a differential preference for

  15. Predator-Prey Dynamics in the Mesopelagic: Odontocete Foraging Ecology and Anti-predator Behavior of Prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benoit-Bird, K. J.

    2016-02-01

    We explored the behavior of Risso's dolphins foraging in scattering layers off California using an integrated approach comprising echosounders deployed in a deep-diving autonomous underwater vehicle, ship based acoustics, visual observations, direct prey sampling, and animal-borne tags on deep-diving predators. We identified three distinct prey layers: a persistent layer around 425 m, a vertically migrating layer around 300 m, and a layer intermittently present near 50 m, all of which were used by individual tagged animals. Active acoustic measurements demonstrated that Risso's dolphins dove to discrete prey layers throughout the day and night with only slightly higher detection rates at night. Dolphins were detected in all three layers during the day with over half of detections in the middle layer, 20% of detections in the deepest layer, and 10% falling outside the main layers. Dolphins were found less frequently in areas where the shallow, intermittent layer was absent, suggesting that this layer, while containing the smallest prey and the lowest densities of squid, was an important component of their foraging strategy. The deepest layer was targeted equally both during the day and at night. Using acoustic data collected from the AUV, we found layers were made up of distinct, small patches of animals of similar size and taxonomy adjacent to contrasting patches. Squid made up over 70% of the patches in which dolphins were found and more than 95% of those in deep water. Squid targeted by dolphins in deep water were also relatively large, indicating significant benefit from these relatively rare, physically demanding dives. Within these patches, prey formed tighter aggregations when Risso's dolphins were present. Careful integration of a suite of traditional and novel tools is providing insight into the ecology and dynamics of predator and prey in the mesopelagic.

  16. Effect of density fluctuations on ECCD in ITER and TCV

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Coda S.

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Density fluctuations near the edge of tokamak plasmas can affect the propagation of electron cyclotron (EC waves. In the present paper, the EC wave propagation in a fluctuating equilibrium is determined using the ray-tracing code C3PO. The evolution of the electron distribution function is calculated self-consistently with the EC wave damping using the 3-D Fokker-Planck solver LUKE. The cumulative effect of fluctuations results in a significant broadening of the current profile combined with a fluctuating power deposition profile. This mechanism improves the simulation of fully non-inductive EC discharges in the TCV tokamaks. Predictive simulations for ITER show that density fluctuations could make the stabilization of NTMs in ITER more challenging.

  17. Localized description of valence fluctuations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Alascio, B.; Allub, R.; Aligia, A.

    1979-07-01

    The authors set up a model for intermediate valence equivalent to the ''atomic'' limit of the Anderson Hamiltonian. Detailed analysis of this model shows that most of the essential characteristics of valence fluctuators are already present in this crudely simplified Hamiltonian. The spin-spin and the 4f charge-charge correlation functions are studied and it is shown that it is possible to define a spin fluctuation frequency ωsub(s.f.) and a charge fluctuation frequency ωsub(ch.f.).ωsub(s.f.) and ωsub(ch.f.) can differ considerably for some values of the parameters of the model. The magnetic susceptibility and the specific heat are calculated as functions of temperature and it is shown how the results simulate the behaviour found in valence fluctuators. (author)

  18. Insects in fluctuating thermal environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colinet, Hervé; Sinclair, Brent J; Vernon, Philippe; Renault, David

    2015-01-07

    All climate change scenarios predict an increase in both global temperature means and the magnitude of seasonal and diel temperature variation. The nonlinear relationship between temperature and biological processes means that fluctuating temperatures lead to physiological, life history, and ecological consequences for ectothermic insects that diverge from those predicted from constant temperatures. Fluctuating temperatures that remain within permissive temperature ranges generally improve performance. By contrast, those which extend to stressful temperatures may have either positive impacts, allowing repair of damage accrued during exposure to thermal extremes, or negative impacts from cumulative damage during successive exposures. We discuss the mechanisms underlying these differing effects. Fluctuating temperatures could be used to enhance or weaken insects in applied rearing programs, and any prediction of insect performance in the field-including models of climate change or population performance-must account for the effect of fluctuating temperatures.

  19. Nonequilibrium quantum fluctuations of work.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allahverdyan, A E

    2014-09-01

    The concept of work is basic for statistical thermodynamics. To gain a fuller understanding of work and its (quantum) features, it needs to be represented as an average of a fluctuating quantity. Here I focus on the work done between two moments of time for a thermally isolated quantum system driven by a time-dependent Hamiltonian. I formulate two natural conditions needed for the fluctuating work to be physically meaningful for a system that starts its evolution from a nonequilibrium state. The existing definitions do not satisfy these conditions due to issues that are traced back to noncommutativity. I propose a definition of fluctuating work that is free of previous drawbacks and that applies for a wide class of nonequilibrium initial states. It allows the deduction of a generalized work-fluctuation theorem that applies for an arbitrary (out-of-equilibrium) initial state.

  20. Quantum fluctuations in insulating ferroelectrics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Riseborough, Peter S.

    2010-01-01

    Graphical abstract: It has been proposed that in a ferroelectric insulator, an applied magnetic field may couple the transverse phonon modes and produce left and right circularly polarized phonon modes which are no longer degenerate. We quantize the theory and examine the effects of quantal fluctuations. In particular, we show that the zero point fluctuations result in a large diamagnetic contribution to the magnetic susceptibility. - Abstract: It has been proposed that in a ferroelectric insulator, an applied magnetic field may couple the transverse phonon modes and produce left and right circularly polarized phonon modes which are no longer degenerate. We quantize the theory and examine the effects of quantal fluctuations. In particular, we show that the zero-point fluctuations result in a large diamagnetic contribution to the magnetic susceptibility.

  1. Fluctuations and Instability in Sedimentation

    KAUST Repository

    Guazzelli, Élisabeth

    2011-01-21

    This review concentrates on the fluctuations of the velocities of sedimenting spheres, and on the structural instability of a suspension of settling fibers. For many years, theoretical estimates and numerical simulations predicted the fluctuations of the velocities of spheres to increase with the size of the container, whereas experiments found no such variation. Two ideas have increased our understanding. First, the correlation length of the velocity fluctuations was found experimentally to be 20 interparticle separations. Second, in dilute suspensions, a vertical variation in the concentration due to the spreading of the front with the clear fluid can inhibit the velocity fluctuations. In a very dilute regime, a homogeneous suspension of fibers suffers a spontaneous instability in which fast descending fiber-rich columns are separated by rising fiber-sparse columns. In a semidilute regime, the settling is hindered, more so than for spheres. © 2011 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.

  2. Critical fluctuations in cortical models near instability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew J. Aburn

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Computational studies often proceed from the premise that cortical dynamics operate in a linearly stable domain, where fluctuations dissipate quickly and show only short memory. Studies of human EEG, however, have shown significant autocorrelation at time lags on the scale of minutes, indicating the need to consider regimes where nonlinearities influence the dynamics. Statistical properties such as increased autocorrelation length, increased variance, power-law scaling and bistable switching have been suggested as generic indicators of the approach to bifurcation in nonlinear dynamical systems. We study temporal fluctuations in a widely-employed computational model (the Jansen-Rit model of cortical activity, examining the statistical signatures that accompany bifurcations. Approaching supercritical Hopf bifurcations through tuning of the background excitatory input, we find a dramatic increase in the autocorrelation length that depends sensitively on the direction in phase space of the input fluctuations and hence on which neuronal subpopulation is stochastically perturbed. Similar dependence on the input direction is found in the distribution of fluctuation size and duration, which show power law scaling that extends over four orders of magnitude at the Hopf bifurcation. We conjecture that the alignment in phase space between the input noise vector and the center manifold of the Hopf bifurcation is directly linked to these changes. These results are consistent with the possibility of statistical indicators of linear instability being detectable in real EEG time series. However, even in a simple cortical model, we find that these indicators may not necessarily be visible even when bifurcations are present because their expression can depend sensitively on the neuronal pathway of incoming fluctuations.

  3. The “Destabilizing” Effect of Cannibalism in a Spatially Explicit Three-Species Age Structured Predator-Prey Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aladeen Al Basheer

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Cannibalism, the act of killing and consumption of conspecifics, is generally considered to be a stabilising process in ODE models of predator-prey systems. On the other hand, Sun et al. were the first to show that cannibalism can cause Turing instability, in the classical Rosenzweig-McArthur two-species PDE model, which is an impossibility without cannibalism. Magnússon’s classic work is the first to show that cannibalism in a structured three-species predator-prey ODE model can actually be destabilising. In the current manuscript we consider the PDE form of the three-species model proposed in Magnússon’s classic work. We prove that, in the absence of cannibalism, Turing instability is an impossibility in this model, for any range of parameters. However, the inclusion of cannibalism can cause Turing instability. Thus, to the best of our knowledge, we report the first cannibalism induced Turing instability result, in spatially explicit three-species age structured predator-prey systems. We also show that, in the classical ODE model proposed by Magnússon, cannibalism can act as a life boat mechanism, for the prey.

  4. Research and Setting the Modified Algorithm "Predator-Prey" in the Problem of the Multi-Objective Optimization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. P. Karpenko

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available We consider a class of algorithms for multi-objective optimization - Pareto-approximation algorithms, which suppose a preliminary building of finite-dimensional approximation of a Pareto set, thereby also a Pareto front of the problem. The article gives an overview of population and non-population algorithms of the Pareto-approximation, identifies their strengths and weaknesses, and presents a canonical algorithm "predator-prey", showing its shortcomings. We offer a number of modifications of the canonical algorithm "predator-prey" with the aim to overcome the drawbacks of this algorithm, present the results of a broad study of the efficiency of these modifications of the algorithm. The peculiarity of the study is the use of the quality indicators of the Pareto-approximation, which previous publications have not used. In addition, we present the results of the meta-optimization of the modified algorithm, i.e. determining the optimal values of some free parameters of the algorithm. The study of efficiency of the modified algorithm "predator-prey" has shown that the proposed modifications allow us to improve the following indicators of the basic algorithm: cardinality of a set of the archive solutions, uniformity of archive solutions, and computation time. By and large, the research results have shown that the modified and meta-optimized algorithm enables achieving exactly the same approximation as the basic algorithm, but with the number of preys being one order less. Computational costs are proportionally reduced.

  5. Prey Acceptability and Preference of Oenopia conglobata (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae, a Candidate for Biological Control in Urban Green Areas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Belén Lumbierres

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Oenopia conglobata is one of the most common ladybird species in urban green areas of the Mediterranean region. We have obtained data about its prey acceptability and prey preferences. In a laboratory experiment, we investigated the acceptability of seven aphid and one psyllid species as prey for this coccinellid: the aphids Chaitophorus populeti, Aphis gossypii, Aphis craccivora Monelliopsis caryae, Eucallipterus tiliae, Aphis nerii (on white poplar, pomegranate, false acacia, black walnut, lime, and oleander, respectively, and the psyllid Acizzia jamatonica on Persian silk tree. These species are abundant in urban green areas in the Mediterranean region. In addition, we tested the acceptability of Rhopalosiphum padi on barley, an aphid species easily reared in the laboratory. We also tested preferences of the predator in cafeteria experiments with three aphid species and one aphid and the psyllid. Adults and larvae of the coccinellid accepted all of the preys offered, except A. nerii, with a clear preference for M. caryae. The predator also showed preference for M. caryae when it was offered in a cafeteria experiment with other aphid species or with the psyllid. The aphid R. padi obtained a good acceptability and could be used for rearing O. conglobata in the laboratory.

  6. Principle of minimal work fluctuations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, Gaoyang; Gong, Jiangbin

    2015-08-01

    Understanding and manipulating work fluctuations in microscale and nanoscale systems are of both fundamental and practical interest. For example, in considering the Jarzynski equality 〈e-βW〉=e-βΔF, a change in the fluctuations of e-βW may impact how rapidly the statistical average of e-βW converges towards the theoretical value e-βΔF, where W is the work, β is the inverse temperature, and ΔF is the free energy difference between two equilibrium states. Motivated by our previous study aiming at the suppression of work fluctuations, here we obtain a principle of minimal work fluctuations. In brief, adiabatic processes as treated in quantum and classical adiabatic theorems yield the minimal fluctuations in e-βW. In the quantum domain, if a system initially prepared at thermal equilibrium is subjected to a work protocol but isolated from a bath during the time evolution, then a quantum adiabatic process without energy level crossing (or an assisted adiabatic process reaching the same final states as in a conventional adiabatic process) yields the minimal fluctuations in e-βW, where W is the quantum work defined by two energy measurements at the beginning and at the end of the process. In the classical domain where the classical work protocol is realizable by an adiabatic process, then the classical adiabatic process also yields the minimal fluctuations in e-βW. Numerical experiments based on a Landau-Zener process confirm our theory in the quantum domain, and our theory in the classical domain explains our previous numerical findings regarding the suppression of classical work fluctuations [G. Y. Xiao and J. B. Gong, Phys. Rev. E 90, 052132 (2014)].

  7. Zebra mussel beds: an effective feeding ground for Ponto-Caspian gobies or suitable shelter for their prey?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jarosław Kobak

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Aggregations of the Ponto-Caspian invasive zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha constitute a suitable habitat for macroinvertebrates, considerably increasing their abundance and providing effective antipredator protection. Thus, the overall effect of a mussel bed on particular predator species may vary from positive to negative, depending on both prey density increase and predator ability to prey in a structurally complex habitat. Alien Ponto-Caspian goby fish are likely to be facilitated when introduced into new areas by zebra mussels, provided that they are capable of utilizing mussel beds as habitat and feeding grounds. We ran laboratory experiments to find which prey (chironomid larvae densities (from ca. 500 to 2,000 individuals m−2 in a mussel bed make it a more beneficial feeding ground for the racer goby Babka gymnotrachelus (RG and western tubenose goby Proterorhinus semilunaris (WTG compared to sandy and stone substrata (containing the basic prey density of 500 ind. m−2. Moreover, we checked how food availability affects habitat selection by fish. Mussel beds became more suitable for fish than alternative mineral substrata when food abundance was at least two times higher (1,000 vs. 500 ind. m−2, regardless of fish size and species. WTG was associated with mussel beds regardless of its size and prey density, whereas RG switched to this habitat when it became a better feeding ground than alternative substrata. Larger RG exhibited a stronger affinity for mussels than small individuals. WTG fed more efficiently from a mussel bed at high food abundances than RG. A literature review has shown that increasing chironomid density, which in our study was sufficient to make a mussel habitat an attractive feeding ground for the gobies, is commonly observed in mussel beds in the field. Therefore, we conclude that zebra mussels may positively affect the alien goby species and are likely to facilitate their establishment in novel areas

  8. Bifurcations and feedback control of a stage-structure exploited prey ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    user

    Here, we have considered a stage structure prey-predator model with stage structure for ... N over the prey ,N β is the transition rate from mature predator population 2 ...... Mathematical Bioeconomics: The Optimal Management of Renewable ...

  9. An Objective Approach to Determining the Weight Ranges of Prey Preferred by and Accessible to the Five Large African Carnivores

    OpenAIRE

    Clements, Hayley S.; Tambling, Craig J.; Hayward, Matt W.; Kerley, Graham I. H.

    2014-01-01

    Broad-scale models describing predator prey preferences serve as useful departure points for understanding predator-prey interactions at finer scales. Previous analyses used a subjective approach to identify prey weight preferences of the five large African carnivores, hence their accuracy is questionable. This study uses a segmented model of prey weight versus prey preference to objectively quantify the prey weight preferences of the five large African carnivores. Based on simulations of kno...

  10. Are owl pellets good estimators of prey abundance?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Analia Andrade

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Some ecologists have been skeptics about the use of owl pellets to estimate small mammal’s fauna. This is due to the assumptions required by this method: (a that owls hunt at random, and (b that pellets represent a random sample from the environment. We performed statistical analysis to test these assumptions and to assess the effectiveness of Barn owl pellets as a useful estimator of field abundances of its preys. We used samples collected in the arid Extra-Andean Patagonia along an altitudinal environmental gradient from lower Monte ecoregion to upper Patagonian steppe ecoregion, with a mid-elevation ecotone. To test if owls hunt at random, we estimated expected pellet frequency by creating a distribution of random pellets, which we compared with data using a simulated chi-square. To test if pellets represent a random sample from the environment, differences between ecoregions were evaluated by PERMANOVAs with Bray–Curtis dissimilarities. We did not find evidence that owls foraged non-randomly. Therefore, we can assume that the proportions of the small mammal’s species in the diet are representative of the proportions of the species in their communities. Only Monte is different from other ecoregions. The ecotone samples are grouped with those of Patagonian steppes. There are no real differences between localities in the small mammal’s abundances in each of these ecoregions and/or Barn owl pellets cannot detect patterns at a smaller spatial scale. Therefore, we have no evidence to invalidate the use of owl pellets at an ecoregional scale.

  11. Does colour polymorphism enhance survival of prey populations?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wennersten, Lena; Forsman, Anders

    2009-01-01

    That colour polymorphism may protect prey populations from predation is an old but rarely tested hypothesis. We examine whether colour polymorphic populations of prey exposed to avian predators in an ecologically valid visual context were exposed to increased extinction risk compared with monomorphic populations. We made 2976 artificial pastry prey, resembling Lepidoptera larvae, in four different colours and presented them in 124 monomorphic and 124 tetramorphic populations on tree trunks and branches such that they would be exposed to predation by free-living birds, and monitored their ‘survival’. Among monomorphic populations, there was a significant effect of prey coloration on survival, confirming that coloration influenced susceptibility to visually oriented predators. Survival of polymorphic populations was inferior to that of monomorphic green populations, but did not differ significantly from monomorphic brown, yellow or red populations. Differences in survival within polymorphic populations paralleled those seen among monomorphic populations; the red morph most frequently went extinct first and the green morph most frequently survived the longest. Our findings do not support the traditional protective polymorphism hypothesis and are in conflict with those of earlier studies. As a possible explanation to our findings, we offer a competing ‘giveaway cue’ hypothesis: that polymorphic populations may include one morph that attracts the attention of predators and that polymorphic populations therefore may suffer increased predation compared with some monomorphic populations. PMID:19324729

  12. Prey, but not plant, chemical discrimination by the lizard ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    We experimentally studied responses to food chemicals by Gerrhosaurus nigrolineatus, amember of a lizard genus endemic to subsaharan Africa. Gerrhosaur diets vary from insectivorous to omnivorous with a very large plant portion. The omnivorous G. validus responds strongly to chemical cues from prey and food plants.

  13. Echolocating bats cry out loud to detect their prey

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Surlykke, Annemarie; Kalko, Elisabeth K V

    2008-01-01

    Echolocating bats have successfully exploited a broad range of habitats and prey. Much research has demonstrated how time-frequency structure of echolocation calls of different species is adapted to acoustic constraints of habitats and foraging behaviors. However, the intensity of bat calls has b...

  14. Hydrodynamics of prey capture in sharks : effects of substrate

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nauwelaerts, Sandra; Wilga, Cheryl; Sanford, Christopher; Lauder, George

    2007-01-01

    In suction feeding, a volume of water is drawn into the mouth of a predator. Previous studies of suction feeding in fishes have shown that significant fluid velocities are confined to a region within one mouth width from the mouth. Therefore, the predator must be relatively close to the prey to

  15. Direct identification of predator-prey dynamics in gyrokinetic simulations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kobayashi, Sumire, E-mail: sumire.kobayashi@lpp.polytechnique.fr; Gürcan, Özgür D [Laboratoire de Physique des Plasmas, CNRS, Paris-Sud, Ecole Polytechnique, UMR7648, F-91128 Palaiseau (France); Diamond, Patrick H. [University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, California 92093-0319 (United States)

    2015-09-15

    The interaction between spontaneously formed zonal flows and small-scale turbulence in nonlinear gyrokinetic simulations is explored in a shearless closed field line geometry. It is found that when clear limit cycle oscillations prevail, the observed turbulent dynamics can be quantitatively captured by a simple Lotka-Volterra type predator-prey model. Fitting the time traces of full gyrokinetic simulations by such a reduced model allows extraction of the model coefficients. Scanning physical plasma parameters, such as collisionality and density gradient, it was observed that the effective growth rates of turbulence (i.e., the prey) remain roughly constant, in spite of the higher and varying level of primary mode linear growth rates. The effective growth rate that was extracted corresponds roughly to the zonal-flow-modified primary mode growth rate. It was also observed that the effective damping of zonal flows (i.e., the predator) in the parameter range, where clear predator-prey dynamics is observed, (i.e., near marginal stability) agrees with the collisional damping expected in these simulations. This implies that the Kelvin-Helmholtz-like instability may be negligible in this range. The results imply that when the tertiary instability plays a role, the dynamics becomes more complex than a simple Lotka-Volterra predator prey.

  16. Prey capture success and chick diet of Damara terns Sterna ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Feeding terns are affected by a variety of environmental conditions. We studied prey capture success of Damara terns Sterna balaenarum in relation to six variables at two breeding colonies in southern Namibia: tidal phase, wind speed, water clarity, cloud cover, water depth and locality. Damara terns dived most ...

  17. Insectivorous birds eavesdrop on the pheromones of their prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saavedra, Irene; Amo, Luisa

    2018-01-01

    Chemical cues play a fundamental role in mate attraction and mate choice. Lepidopteran females, such as the winter moth (Operophtera brumata), emit pheromones to attract males in the reproductive period. However, these chemical cues could also be eavesdropped by predators. To our knowledge, no studies have examined whether birds can detect pheromones of their prey. O. brumata adults are part of the winter diet of some insectivorous tit species, such as the great tit (Parus major) and blue tit (Cyanistes caeruleus). We performed a field experiment aimed to disentangle whether insectivorous birds can exploit the pheromones emitted by their prey for prey location. We placed artificial larvae and a dispenser on branches of Pyrenean oak trees (Quercus pyrenaica). In half of the trees we placed an O. brumata pheromone dispenser and in the other half we placed a control dispenser. We measured the predation rate of birds on artificial larvae. Our results show that more trees had larvae with signs of avian predation when they contained an O. brumata pheromone than when they contained a control dispenser. Furthermore, the proportion of artificial larvae with signs of avian predation was greater in trees that contained the pheromone than in control trees. Our results indicate that insectivorous birds can exploit the pheromones emitted by moth females to attract males, as a method of prey detection. These results highlight the potential use of insectivorous birds in the biological control of insect pests.

  18. Chapter 22: Marbled Murrelet Food Habits and Prey Ecology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esther E. Burkett

    1995-01-01

    Information on food habits of the Marbled Murrelet (Brachyramphus marmoratus) was compiled from systematic studies and anecdotal reports from Alaska to California. Major differences between the winter and summer diets were apparent, with euphausiids and mysids becoming more dominant during winter and spring. The primary invertebrate prey items were...

  19. Lionfish misidentification circumvents an optimized escape response by prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCormick, Mark I; Allan, Bridie J M

    2016-01-01

    Invasive lionfish represent an unprecedented problem in the Caribbean basin, where they are causing major changes to foodwebs and habitats through their generalized predation on fishes and invertebrates. To ascertain what makes the red lionfish ( Pterois volitans ) such a formidable predator, we examined the reaction of a native damselfish prey, the whitetail damsel ( Pomacentrus chrysurus ), to a repeatable startle stimulus once they had been forewarned of the sight or smell of lionfish. Fast-start responses were compared with prey forewarned of a predatory rockcod ( Cephalopholis microprion ), a corallivorous butterflyfish ( Chaetodon trifasctiatus ) and experimental controls. Forewarning of the sight, smell or a combination of the two cues from a rockcod led to reduced escape latencies and higher response distances, speed and maximal speed compared with controls, suggesting that forewarning primed the prey and enabled a more effective escape response. In contrast, forewarning of lionfish did not affect the fast-start kinematics measured, which were the same as in the control and non-predatory butterflyfish treatments. Lionfish appear to be able to circumvent mechanisms commonly used by prey to identify predators and were misclassified as non-predatory, and this is likely to contribute to their success as predators.

  20. Testing for Camouflage Using Virtual Prey and Human "Predators"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Todd, Peter A.

    2009-01-01

    Camouflage is a prevalent feature of the natural world and as such has a ready appeal to students; however, it is a difficult subject to study using real predators and prey. This paper focuses how one fundamental type of camouflage, disruptive colouration (bold markings that break up the outline of the organism), can be tested using paper…

  1. Sea urchins, their predators and prey in SW Portugal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nuno Mamede

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Sea urchins play a key role structuring benthic communities of rocky shores through an intense herbivory. The most abundant sea urchin species on shallow rocky subtidal habitats of the SW coast of Portugal is Paracentrotus lividus (Echinodermata: Echinoidea. It is considered a key species in various locations throughout its geographical distribution by affecting the structure of macroalgae communities and may cause the abrupt transformation of habitats dominated by foliose algae to habitats dominated by encrusting algae - the urchin barrens. The removal of P. lividus predators by recreational and commercial fishing is considered a major cause of this phenomenon by affecting the trophic relationships between predators, sea urchins and algae communities. Marine protected areas (MPAs usually lead to the recovery of important predator species that control sea urchin populations and restore habitats dominated by foliose macroalgae. Therefore, MPAs provide a good opportunity to test cascading effects and indirect impacts of fishing at the ecosystem level. The ecological role of P. lividus was studied on rocky subtidal habitats of the SW coast of Portugal (Alentejo considering three trophic levels: population of P. lividus, their predators (fish and shellfish and their prey (macroalgae communities. Several studies were conducted: (1 a non-destructive observational study on the abundance and distribution patterns of P. lividus, their predators and preys, comparing areas with different protection; (2 a manipulative in situ study with cages to assess the role of P. lividus as an herbivore and the influence of predation; (3 a descriptive study of P. lividus predators based on underwater filming; (4 and a study of human perception on these trophic relationships and other issues on sea urchin ecology and fishery, based on surveys made to fishermen and divers. Subtidal studies were performed with SCUBA diving at 3-12 m deep. Results indicate that in the

  2. The relative influence of prey abundance and co-breeders on the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This study investigates if the reproductive performance of polyandrous Pale Chanting-goshawks, Melierax canorus, is governed by the abundance of dominant rodent-prey species or a co-breeding male participating fully in prey being delivered to the female and young. Polyandrous trios in prey-rich habitat, the only habitat ...

  3. Irreversible prey diapause as an optimal strategy of a physiologically extended Lotka-Volterra model

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Staňková, K.; Abate, A.; Sabelis, M.W.

    2013-01-01

    We propose an optimal control framework to describe intra-seasonal predator-prey interactions, which are characterized by a continuous-time dynamical model comprising predator and prey density, as well as the energy budget of the prey over the length of a season. The model includes a time-dependent

  4. Dynamic Analysis of an Impulsively Controlled Predator-Prey Model with Holling Type IV Functional Response

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yanzhen Wang

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The dynamic behavior of a predator-prey model with Holling type IV functional response is investigated with respect to impulsive control strategies. The model is analyzed to obtain the conditions under which the system is locally asymptotically stable and permanent. Existence of a positive periodic solution of the system and the boundedness of the system is also confirmed. Furthermore, numerical analysis is used to discover the influence of impulsive perturbations. The system is found to exhibit rich dynamics such as symmetry-breaking pitchfork bifurcation, chaos, and nonunique dynamics.

  5. Global Behavior for a Strongly Coupled Predator-Prey Model with One Resource and Two Consumers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yujuan Jiao

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available We consider a strongly coupled predator-prey model with one resource and two consumers, in which the first consumer species feeds on the resource according to the Holling II functional response, while the second consumer species feeds on the resource following the Beddington-DeAngelis functional response, and they compete for the common resource. Using the energy estimates and Gagliardo-Nirenberg-type inequalities, the existence and uniform boundedness of global solutions for the model are proved. Meanwhile, the sufficient conditions for global asymptotic stability of the positive equilibrium for this model are given by constructing a Lyapunov function.

  6. Ocean acidification disrupts prey responses to predator cues but not net prey shell growth in Concholepas concholepas (loco.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricio H Manríquez

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Most research on Ocean Acidification (OA has largely focused on the process of calcification and the physiological trade-offs employed by calcifying organisms to support the building of calcium carbonate structures. However, there is growing evidence that OA can also impact upon other key biological processes such as survival, growth and behaviour. On wave-swept rocky shores the ability of gastropods to self-right after dislodgement, and rapidly return to normal orientation, reduces the risk of predation. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The impacts of OA on this self-righting behaviour and other important parameters such as growth, survival, shell dissolution and shell deposition in Concholepas concholepas (loco were investigated under contrasting pCO2 levels. Although no impacts of OA on either growth or net shell calcification were found, the results did show that OA can significantly affect self-righting behaviour during the early ontogeny of this species with significantly faster righting times recorded for individuals of C. concholepas reared under increased average pCO2 concentrations (± SE (716 ± 12 and 1036 ± 14 µatm CO2 compared to those reared at concentrations equivalent to those presently found in the surface ocean (388 ± 8 µatm CO2. When loco were also exposed to the predatory crab Acanthocyclus hassleri, righting times were again increased by exposure to elevated CO2, although self-righting times were generally twice as fast as those observed in the absence of the crab. CONCLUSIONS AND SIGNIFICANCE: These results suggest that self-righting in the early ontogeny of C. concholepas will be positively affected by pCO2 levels expected by the end of the 21st century and beginning of the next one. However, as the rate of self-righting is an adaptive trait evolved to reduce lethal predatory attacks, our result also suggest that OA may disrupt prey responses to predators in nature.

  7. Trophically available metal - A variable feast

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rainbow, Philip S.; Luoma, Samuel N.; Wang Wenxiong

    2011-01-01

    Assimilation of trace metals by predators from prey is affected by the physicochemical form of the accumulated metal in the prey, leading to the concept of a Trophically Available Metal (TAM) component in the food item definable in terms of particular subcellular fractions of accumulated metal. As originally defined TAM consists of soluble metal forms and metal associated with cell organelles, the combination of separated fractions which best explained particular results involving a decapod crustacean predator feeding on bivalve mollusc tissues. Unfortunately TAM as originally defined has subsequently frequently been used in the literature as an absolute description of that component of accumulated metal that is trophically available in all prey to all consumers. It is now clear that what is trophically available varies between food items, consumers and metals. TAM as originally defined should be seen as a useful starting hypothesis, not as a statement of fact. - Trophically Available Metal (TAM), the component of accumulated metal in food that is taken up by a feeding animal, varies with food type and consumer.

  8. Trophically available metal - A variable feast

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rainbow, Philip S., E-mail: p.rainbow@nhm.ac.uk [Department of Zoology, Natural History Museum, Cromwell Rd, London SW7 5BD (United Kingdom); Luoma, Samuel N. [Department of Zoology, Natural History Museum, Cromwell Rd, London SW7 5BD (United Kingdom); John Muir Institute of the Environment, University of California, Davis, CA 95616 (United States); Wang Wenxiong [College of Marine and Environmental Sciences, State Key Laboratory for Marine Environmental Sciences, Xiamen University, Fujian (China)

    2011-10-15

    Assimilation of trace metals by predators from prey is affected by the physicochemical form of the accumulated metal in the prey, leading to the concept of a Trophically Available Metal (TAM) component in the food item definable in terms of particular subcellular fractions of accumulated metal. As originally defined TAM consists of soluble metal forms and metal associated with cell organelles, the combination of separated fractions which best explained particular results involving a decapod crustacean predator feeding on bivalve mollusc tissues. Unfortunately TAM as originally defined has subsequently frequently been used in the literature as an absolute description of that component of accumulated metal that is trophically available in all prey to all consumers. It is now clear that what is trophically available varies between food items, consumers and metals. TAM as originally defined should be seen as a useful starting hypothesis, not as a statement of fact. - Trophically Available Metal (TAM), the component of accumulated metal in food that is taken up by a feeding animal, varies with food type and consumer.

  9. Fluctuation analysis of rotational spectra

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Doessing, T.; Bracco, A.; Broglia, R.A.; Matsuo, M.

    1996-01-01

    The compound state rotational degree of freedom is ''damped'' in the sense that the electric quadrupole decay of a single quantum state with angular momentum I exhibits a spectrum of final states all having spin I-2. In actual experiments, the cascade of γ-rays associated with each of the members of the ensemble of compound nuclei uses each of the ''discrete'' transitions many more times than the ''continuum'' transitions. Relatively large and small fluctuations in the recorded coincidence spectrum ensue, respectively. The analysis of the fluctuations will be shown to be instrumental to gain insight into the phenomenon of rotational damping. For this purpose, two- and higher-fold coincidence spectra emitted from rotating nuclei are analyzed with respect to the count fluctuations. The coincidences from consecutive γ-rays emitted from discrete rotational bands generate ridges in the E γ1 .E γ2 spectrum, and the fluctuation analysis of the ridges is based upon the ansatz of a random selection of transition energies from band to band. This ansatz is supported by a cranked mean-field calculation for the nucleus 168 Yb, as well as by analyzing resolved bands in 168 Yb and its neighbors. The fluctuation analysis of the central valley (E γ1 =E γ2 ) is based upon the ansatz of fluctuations in the intensity of the transitions of Porter-Thomas type superposed on a smooth spectrum of transition energies. This ansatz is again supported by a mixed-band calculation. The mathematical treatment of count fluctuations is formulated in general (orig.)

  10. Prevention of Employees Fluctuation in IT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Libor Mesicek

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this paper is to present results of implementation fluctuation preventing counter-measures among other positions in IT department. In 2017 there is still one of the lowest unemployment rates in the history of the Czech Republic (especially in IT and companies are trying to preserve and prevent their key employees from moving to another employer. One of the tools, which could help reduce this risk, is providing additional education, certification and qualification with laying great emphasis on most valuable and essential personnel. The paper present updated results after 6 months since the company started with selection of high risks employees. It has been found that group of employees with high risk of leaving the company has shrunk and overall fluctuation index has also plunged.

  11. Zebra mussel beds: an effective feeding ground for Ponto-Caspian gobies or suitable shelter for their prey?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kobak, Jarosław; Poznańska, Małgorzata; Jermacz, Łukasz; Kakareko, Tomasz; Prądzynski, Daniel; Łodygowska, Małgorzata; Montowska, Karolina; Bącela-Spychalska, Karolina

    2016-01-01

    Aggregations of the Ponto-Caspian invasive zebra mussel ( Dreissena polymorpha ) constitute a suitable habitat for macroinvertebrates, considerably increasing their abundance and providing effective antipredator protection. Thus, the overall effect of a mussel bed on particular predator species may vary from positive to negative, depending on both prey density increase and predator ability to prey in a structurally complex habitat. Alien Ponto-Caspian goby fish are likely to be facilitated when introduced into new areas by zebra mussels, provided that they are capable of utilizing mussel beds as habitat and feeding grounds. We ran laboratory experiments to find which prey (chironomid larvae) densities (from ca. 500 to 2,000 individuals m -2 ) in a mussel bed make it a more beneficial feeding ground for the racer goby Babka gymnotrachelus (RG) and western tubenose goby Proterorhinus semilunaris (WTG) compared to sandy and stone substrata (containing the basic prey density of 500 ind. m -2 ). Moreover, we checked how food availability affects habitat selection by fish. Mussel beds became more suitable for fish than alternative mineral substrata when food abundance was at least two times higher (1,000 vs. 500 ind. m -2 ), regardless of fish size and species. WTG was associated with mussel beds regardless of its size and prey density, whereas RG switched to this habitat when it became a better feeding ground than alternative substrata. Larger RG exhibited a stronger affinity for mussels than small individuals. WTG fed more efficiently from a mussel bed at high food abundances than RG. A literature review has shown that increasing chironomid density, which in our study was sufficient to make a mussel habitat an attractive feeding ground for the gobies, is commonly observed in mussel beds in the field. Therefore, we conclude that zebra mussels may positively affect the alien goby species and are likely to facilitate their establishment in novel areas, contributing to an

  12. Genetic and environmental transmission of body mass index fluctuation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bergin, Jocilyn E; Neale, Michael C; Eaves, Lindon J; Martin, Nicholas G; Heath, Andrew C; Maes, Hermine H

    2012-11-01

    This study sought to determine the relationship between body mass index (BMI) fluctuation and cardiovascular disease phenotypes, diabetes, and depression and the role of genetic and environmental factors in individual differences in BMI fluctuation using the extended twin-family model (ETFM). This study included 14,763 twins and their relatives. Health and Lifestyle Questionnaires were obtained from 28,492 individuals from the Virginia 30,000 dataset including twins, parents, siblings, spouses, and children of twins. Self-report cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and depression data were available. From self-reported height and weight, BMI fluctuation was calculated as the difference between highest and lowest BMI after age 18, for individuals 18-80 years. Logistic regression analyses were used to determine the relationship between BMI fluctuation and disease status. The ETFM was used to estimate the significance and contribution of genetic and environmental factors, cultural transmission, and assortative mating components to BMI fluctuation, while controlling for age. We tested sex differences in additive and dominant genetic effects, parental, non-parental, twin, and unique environmental effects. BMI fluctuation was highly associated with disease status, independent of BMI. Genetic effects accounted for ~34 % of variance in BMI fluctuation in males and ~43 % of variance in females. The majority of the variance was accounted for by environmental factors, about a third of which were shared among twins. Assortative mating, and cultural transmission accounted for only a small proportion of variance in this phenotype. Since there are substantial health risks associated with BMI fluctuation and environmental components of BMI fluctuation account for over 60 % of variance in males and over 50 % of variance in females, environmental risk factors may be appropriate targets to reduce BMI fluctuation.

  13. Environmental conditions and prey-switching by a seabird predator impact juvenile salmon survival

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wells, Brian K.; Santora, Jarrod A.; Henderson, Mark J.; Warzybok, Pete; Jahncke, Jaime; Bradley, Russell W.; Huff, David D.; Schroeder, Isaac D.; Nelson, Peter; Field, John C.; Ainley, David G.

    2017-01-01

    Due to spatio-temporal variability of lower trophic-level productivity along the California Current Ecosystem (CCE), predators must be capable of switching prey or foraging areas in response to changes in environmental conditions and available forage. The Gulf of the Farallones in central California represents a biodiversity hotspot and contains the largest common murre (Uria aalge) colonies along the CCE. During spring, one of the West Coast's most important Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) populations out-migrates into the Gulf of the Farallones. We quantify the effect of predation on juvenile Chinook salmon associated with ecosystem-level variability by integrating long-term time series of environmental conditions (upwelling, river discharge), forage species abundance within central CCE, and population size, at-sea distribution, and diet of the common murre. Our results demonstrate common murres typically forage in the vicinity of their offshore breeding sites, but in years in which their primary prey, pelagic young-of-year rockfish (Sebastesspp.), are less available they forage for adult northern anchovies (Engraulis mordax) nearshore. Incidentally, while foraging inshore, common murre consumption of out-migrating juvenile Chinook salmon, which are collocated with northern anchovy, increases and population survival of the salmon is significantly reduced. Results support earlier findings that show timing and strength of upwelling, and the resultant forage fish assemblage, is related to Chinook salmon recruitment variability in the CCE, but we extend those results by demonstrating the significance of top-down impacts associated with these bottom-up dynamics. Our results demonstrate the complexity of ecosystem interactions and impacts between higher trophic-level predators and their prey, complexities necessary to quantify in order to parameterize ecosystem models and evaluate likely outcomes of ecosystem management options.

  14. Environmental conditions and prey-switching by a seabird predator impact juvenile salmon survival

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wells, Brian K.; Santora, Jarrod A.; Henderson, Mark J.; Warzybok, Pete; Jahncke, Jaime; Bradley, Russell W.; Huff, David D.; Schroeder, Isaac D.; Nelson, Peter; Field, John C.; Ainley, David G.

    2017-10-01

    Due to spatio-temporal variability of lower trophic-level productivity along the California Current Ecosystem (CCE), predators must be capable of switching prey or foraging areas in response to changes in environmental conditions and available forage. The Gulf of the Farallones in central California represents a biodiversity hotspot and contains the largest common murre (Uria aalge) colonies along the CCE. During spring, one of the West Coast's most important Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) populations out-migrates into the Gulf of the Farallones. We quantify the effect of predation on juvenile Chinook salmon associated with ecosystem-level variability by integrating long-term time series of environmental conditions (upwelling, river discharge), forage species abundance within central CCE, and population size, at-sea distribution, and diet of the common murre. Our results demonstrate common murres typically forage in the vicinity of their offshore breeding sites, but in years in which their primary prey, pelagic young-of-year rockfish (Sebastes spp.), are less available they forage for adult northern anchovies (Engraulis mordax) nearshore. Incidentally, while foraging inshore, common murre consumption of out-migrating juvenile Chinook salmon, which are collocated with northern anchovy, increases and population survival of the salmon is significantly reduced. Results support earlier findings that show timing and strength of upwelling, and the resultant forage fish assemblage, is related to Chinook salmon recruitment variability in the CCE, but we extend those results by demonstrating the significance of top-down impacts associated with these bottom-up dynamics. Our results demonstrate the complexity of ecosystem interactions and impacts between higher trophic-level predators and their prey, complexities necessary to quantify in order to parameterize ecosystem models and evaluate likely outcomes of ecosystem management options.

  15. Effect of altering local protein fluctuations using artificial intelligence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katsuhiko Nishiyama

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available The fluctuations in Arg111, a significantly fluctuating residue in cathepsin K, were locally regulated by modifying Arg111 to Gly111. The binding properties of 15 dipeptides in the modified protein were analyzed by molecular simulations, and modeled as decision trees using artificial intelligence. The decision tree of the modified protein significantly differed from that of unmodified cathepsin K, and the Arg-to-Gly modification exerted a remarkable effect on the peptide binding properties. By locally regulating the fluctuations of a protein, we may greatly alter the original functions of the protein, enabling novel applications in several fields.

  16. Topics in fluctuating nonlinear hydrodynamics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Milner, S.T.

    1986-01-01

    Models of fluctuating nonlinear hydrodynamics have enjoyed much success in explaining the effect of long-wavelength fluctuations in diverse hydrodynamic systems. This thesis explores two such problems; in both, the body of hydrodynamic assumptions powerfully constrains the predictions of a well-posed theory. The effects of layer fluctuations in smectic-A liquid crystals are first examined. The static theory (introduced by Grinstein and Pelcovits) is reviewed. Ward identities, resulting from the arbitrariness of the layering direction, are derived and exploited. The static results motivate an examination of dynamic fluctuation effects. A new sound-damping experiment is proposed that would probe singular dependence of viscosities on applied stress. A theory of Procaccia and Gitterman that reaction rates of chemically reacting binary mixtures are drastically reduced near their thermodynamic critical points is analyzed. Hydrodynamic arguments and Van Hove theory are applied, concluding that the PG idea is drastically slowed, and spatially varying composition fluctuations are at best slowed down over a narrow range of wavenumbers

  17. Electric Field Fluctuations in Water

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thorpe, Dayton; Limmer, David; Chandler, David

    2013-03-01

    Charge transfer in solution, such as autoionization and ion pair dissociation in water, is governed by rare electric field fluctuations of the solvent. Knowing the statistics of such fluctuations can help explain the dynamics of these rare events. Trajectories short enough to be tractable by computer simulation are virtually certain not to sample the large fluctuations that promote rare events. Here, we employ importance sampling techniques with classical molecular dynamics simulations of liquid water to study statistics of electric field fluctuations far from their means. We find that the distributions of electric fields located on individual water molecules are not in general gaussian. Near the mean this non-gaussianity is due to the internal charge distribution of the water molecule. Further from the mean, however, there is a previously unreported Bjerrum-like defect that stabilizes certain large fluctuations out of equilibrium. As expected, differences in electric fields acting between molecules are gaussian to a remarkable degree. By studying these differences, though, we are able to determine what configurations result not only in large electric fields, but also in electric fields with long spatial correlations that may be needed to promote charge separation.

  18. Morphological correlates of prey consumed by Podarcis melisellensis (Braun, 1877 and P. siculus (Rafinesque, 1810 (Sauria, Lacertidae from two mainland regions in the eastern Adriatic area

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stamenković S.Ž.

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The correlation between trophic utilization and morphology was studied for two lizard species (Podarcis melisellensis and P. siculus from two mainland localities in the eastern Adriatic area; this is the first report of trophic and morphometric data for P. melisellensis from mainland populations. Variance partitioning showed that most of the variation in morphological traits for the analyzed lizards was the result of differences between species, and to a lesser extent between sexes. Locality did not have a strong effect on the variation of morphological traits. Prey weight is the only characteristic of prey that generally exhibits correlations with morphological characteristics rather than prey size. The pattern of correlations is generally weaker for P. melisellensis than for P. siculus. Optimal foraging theory predictions were generally confirmed: P. siculus is more constrained by trophic resource availability, with a premium on larger and heavier prey consumed in the less productive locality (SM, which can be relaxed in more productive regions (KL. P. melisellensis shows such constraints only for males in the less productive region (SM. Females of both species consume heavier prey. [Projekat Ministarstva nauke Republike Srbije, br. III43001 i br. 173011

  19. Mechanical work as a determinant of prey-handling behavior in the tokay gecko (Gekko gecko).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrews, C; Bertram, J E

    1997-01-01

    In this study an in vitro analysis of the force and mechanical work required to bite prey items of different size and physical character is combined with an in vivo analysis of prey-handling behavior in the tokay gecko (Gekko gecko). The force required to bite and the work of biting increase with prey size, but the rate of increase is prey specific, with crickets (Acheta domestica) requiring substantially more force and work per bite than larvae (Galleria mellonella and Manduca sexta) for all but the smallest prey. Prey-handling behavior is also prey specific. Geckos exert more bites per feeding event on small crickets than on small insect larvae, but the number of bites increases faster with prey mass for larvae than for crickets. Combination of the in vitro mechanical measurements with the in vivo behavior analysis allows the calculation of total mechanical work per feeding event and indicates that total work increases with prey size but that the difference between prey types is far less than predicted from the differences in structural properties of the prey. This occurs because the number of bites and work per bite relationships tend to cancel the differences in the total work necessary to process each prey type. Thus, when considering the effect of prey size, a 13-fold greater rate of increase in bite force and an 18-fold greater rate of increase of work per bit for crickets over larvae was partially compensated for by a threefold increase in the number of bites used on larvae relative to crickets. These results can be interpreted in two ways. The effect of mechanical work in feeding behavior suggests that the energetics of jaw adductor musculature could play a greater role in governing the feeding behavior of this lizard than has previously been expected. Alternatively, the scaling of work in feeding over a range of prey sizes suggests distinct differences in the geometric features of the prey that determine how they are processed.

  20. Visually driven chaining of elementary swim patterns into a goal-directed motor sequence: a virtual reality study of zebrafish prey capture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chintan A Trivedi

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Prey capture behavior critically depends on rapid processing of sensory input in order to track, approach and catch the target. When using vision, the nervous system faces the problem of extracting relevant information from a continuous stream of input in order to detect and categorize visible objects as potential prey and to select appropriate motor patterns for approach. For prey capture, many vertebrates exhibit intermittent locomotion, in which discrete motor patterns are chained into a sequence, interrupted by short periods of rest. Here, using high-speed recordings of full-length prey capture sequences performed by freely swimming zebrafish larvae in the presence of a single paramecium, we provide a detailed kinematic analysis of first and subsequent swim bouts during prey capture. Using Fourier analysis, we show that individual swim bouts represent an elementary motor pattern. Changes in orientation are directed towards the target on a graded scale and are implemented by an asymmetric tail bend component superimposed on this basic motor pattern. To further investigate the role of visual feedback on the efficiency and speed of this complex behavior, we developed a closed-loop virtual reality setup in which minimally restrained larvae recapitulated interconnected swim patterns closely resembling those observed during prey capture in freely moving fish. Systematic variation of stimulus properties showed that prey capture is initiated within a narrow range of stimulus size and velocity. Furthermore, variations in the delay and location of swim-triggered visual feedback showed that the reaction time of secondary and later swims is shorter for stimuli that appear within a narrow spatio-temporal window following a swim. This suggests that the larva may generate an expectation of stimulus position, which enables accelerated motor sequencing if the expectation is met by appropriate visual feedback.

  1. Physics-based simulations of aerial attacks by peregrine falcons reveal that stooping at high speed maximizes catch success against agile prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robin Mills

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The peregrine falcon Falco peregrinus is renowned for attacking its prey from high altitude in a fast controlled dive called a stoop. Many other raptors employ a similar mode of attack, but the functional benefits of stooping remain obscure. Here we investigate whether, when, and why stooping promotes catch success, using a three-dimensional, agent-based modeling approach to simulate attacks of falcons on aerial prey. We simulate avian flapping and gliding flight using an analytical quasi-steady model of the aerodynamic forces and moments, parametrized by empirical measurements of flight morphology. The model-birds' flight control inputs are commanded by their guidance system, comprising a phenomenological model of its vision, guidance, and control. To intercept its prey, model-falcons use the same guidance law as missiles (pure proportional navigation; this assumption is corroborated by empirical data on peregrine falcons hunting lures. We parametrically vary the falcon's starting position relative to its prey, together with the feedback gain of its guidance loop, under differing assumptions regarding its errors and delay in vision and control, and for three different patterns of prey motion. We find that, when the prey maneuvers erratically, high-altitude stoops increase catch success compared to low-altitude attacks, but only if the falcon's guidance law is appropriately tuned, and only given a high degree of precision in vision and control. Remarkably, the optimal tuning of the guidance law in our simulations coincides closely with what has been observed empirically in peregrines. High-altitude stoops are shown to be beneficial because their high airspeed enables production of higher aerodynamic forces for maneuvering, and facilitates higher roll agility as the wings are tucked, each of which is essential to catching maneuvering prey at realistic response delays.

  2. Social familiarity governs prey patch-exploitation, -leaving and inter-patch distribution of the group-living predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gernot J Zach

    Full Text Available In group-living animals, social interactions and their effects on other life activities such as foraging are commonly determined by discrimination among group members. Accordingly, many group-living species evolved sophisticated social recognition abilities such as the ability to recognize familiar individuals, i.e. individuals encountered before. Social familiarity may affect within-group interactions and between-group movements. In environments with patchily distributed prey, group-living predators must repeatedly decide whether to stay with the group in a given prey patch or to leave and search for new prey patches and groups.Based on the assumption that in group-living animals social familiarity allows to optimize the performance in other tasks, as for example predicted by limited attention theory, we assessed the influence of social familiarity on prey patch exploitation, patch-leaving, and inter-patch distribution of the group-living, plant-inhabiting predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis. P. persimilis is highly specialized on herbivorous spider mite prey such as the two-spotted spider mite Tetranychus urticae, which is patchily distributed on its host plants. We conducted two experiments with (1 groups of juvenile P. persimilis under limited food on interconnected detached leaflets, and (2 groups of adult P. persimilis females under limited food on whole plants. Familiar individuals of both juvenile and adult predator groups were more exploratory and dispersed earlier from a given spider mite patch, occupied more leaves and depleted prey more quickly than individuals of unfamiliar groups. Moreover, familiar juvenile predators had higher survival chances than unfamiliar juveniles.We argue that patch-exploitation and -leaving, and inter-patch dispersion were more favorably coordinated in groups of familiar than unfamiliar predators, alleviating intraspecific competition and improving prey utilization and suppression.

  3. Places available**

    CERN Multimedia

    2003-01-01

    If you wish to participate in one of the following courses, please discuss with your supervisor and apply electronically directly from the course description pages that can be found on the Web at: http://www.cern.ch/Training/ or fill in an "application for training" form available from your Divisional Secretariat or from your DTO (Divisional Training Officer). Applications will be accepted in the order of their receipt. TECHNICAL TRAINING Monique Duval tel. 74924 technical.training@cern.ch ** The number of places available may vary. Please check our Web site to find out the current availability. Places are available in the following courses: ACCESS 2000 - niveau 1 : 13 & 14.11.03 (2 jours) C++ for Particle Physicists : 17 – 21.11.03 (6 X 3-hour lectures) Programmation automate Schneider TSX Premium – niveau 2 : 18 – 21.11.03 (4 jours) JAVA 2 Enterprise Edition – Part 1 : WEB Applications : 20 & ...

  4. Multiscale fluctuations in nuclear response

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lacroix, D.; Chomaz, Ph.

    1999-01-01

    The nuclear collective response is investigated in the framework of a doorway picture in which the spreading width of the collective emotion is described as a coupling to more and more complex configurations. It is shown that this coupling induces fluctuations of the observed strength. In the case of a hierarchy of overlapping decay channels, Ericson fluctuations are observed at different scales. Methods for extracting these scales and the related lifetimes are discussed. Finally, it is shown that the coupling of different states at one level of complexity to some common decay channels at the next level, may produce interference-like patterns in the nuclear response. This quantum effect leads to anew type of fluctuations with a typical width related to the level spacing. (author)

  5. Fluctuation relations for anomalous dynamics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chechkin, A V; Klages, R

    2009-01-01

    We consider work fluctuation relations (FRs) for generic types of dynamics generating anomalous diffusion: Lévy flights, long-correlated Gaussian processes and time-fractional kinetics. By combining Langevin and kinetic approaches we calculate the probability distributions of mechanical and thermodynamical work in two paradigmatic nonequilibrium situations, respectively: a particle subject to a constant force and a particle in a harmonic potential dragged by a constant force. We check the transient FR for two models exhibiting superdiffusion, where a fluctuation-dissipation relation does not exist, and for two other models displaying subdiffusion, where there is a fluctuation-dissipation relation. In the two former cases the conventional transient FR is not recovered, whereas in the latter two it holds either exactly or in the long-time limit. (letter)

  6. Multiscale fluctuations in nuclear response

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lacroix, D.; Chomaz, Ph

    1999-01-01

    The nuclear collective response is investigated in the framework of a doorway picture in which the spreading width of the collective emotion is described as a coupling to more and more complex configurations. It is shown that this coupling induces fluctuations of the observed strength. In the case of a hierarchy of overlapping decay channels, Ericson fluctuations are observed at different scales. Methods for extracting these scales and the related lifetimes are discussed. Finally, it is shown that the coupling of different states at one level of complexity to some common decay channels at the next level, may produce interference-like patterns in the nuclear response. This quantum effect leads to anew type of fluctuations with a typical width related to the level spacing. (author) 25 refs.

  7. The global stability of a delayed predator-prey system with two stage-structure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang Fengyan; Pang Guoping

    2009-01-01

    Based on the classical delayed stage-structured model and Lotka-Volterra predator-prey model, we introduce and study a delayed predator-prey system, where prey and predator have two stages, an immature stage and a mature stage. The time delays are the time lengths between the immature's birth and maturity of prey and predator species. Results on global asymptotic stability of nonnegative equilibria of the delay system are given, which generalize and suggest that good continuity exists between the predator-prey system and its corresponding stage-structured system.

  8. Phase space fluctuations and dynamics of fluctuations of collective variables

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Benhassine, B.; Farine, M.; Idier, D.; Remaud, B.; Sebille, F. (Lab. de Physique Nucleaire, IN2P3/CNRS, 44 - Nantes (France) Nantes Univ., 44 (France)); Hernandez, E.S. (Dept. de Fisica, Ciudad Universitaria, Buenos Aires (Argentina))

    1992-08-03

    Within the framework of theoretical approaches based on stochastic transport equation of one-body distribution function, a numerical treatment of the fluctuations of collective observables is studied and checked in comparison with analytical results either at equilibrium or close to it. (orig.).

  9. Phase space fluctuations and dynamics of fluctuations of collective variables

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Benhassine, B.; Farine, M.; Idier, D.; Remaud, B.; Sebille, F.; Hernandez, E.S.

    1992-01-01

    Within the framework of theoretical approaches based on stochastic transport equation of one-body distribution function, a numerical treatment of the fluctuations of collective observables is studied and checked in comparison with analytical results either at equilibrium or close to it. (orig.)

  10. Places available

    CERN Multimedia

    2004-01-01

    If you wish to participate in one of the following courses, please discuss with your supervisor and apply electronically directly from the course description pages that can be found on the Web at: http://www.cern.ch/Training/ or fill in an "application for training" form available from your Divisional Secretariat or from your DTO (Divisional Training Officer). Applications will be accepted in the order of their receipt. Places available The number of places available may vary. Please check our Web site to find out the current availability. Places are available in the following courses : Introduction à Outlook : 19.8.2004 (1 journée) Outlook (short course I) : E-mail : 31.8.2004 (2 hours, morning) Outlook (short course II) : Calendar, Tasks and Notes : 31.8.2004 (2 hours, afternoon) Instructor-led WBTechT Study or Follow-up for Microsoft Applications : 7.9.2004 (morning) Outlook (short course III) : Meetings and Delegation : 7.9.2004 (2 hours, afternoon) Introduction ...

  11. Detection of earthworm prey by Ruff

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Onrust, J.; Loonstra, A.H.J.; Schmaltz, L.E.; Verkuil, Y.I.; Hooijmeijer, J.C.E.W.; Piersma, T.

    2017-01-01

    Ruff Philomachus pugnax staging in the Netherlands forage in agricultural grasslands,where they mainly eat earthworms (Lumbricidae). Food intake and the surface availabilityof earthworms were studied in dairy farmland of southwest Friesland in March–April2011. Daily changes in earthworm availability

  12. Entropic Repulsion Between Fluctuating Surfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janke, W.

    The statistical mechanics of fluctuating surfaces plays an important role in a variety of physical systems, ranging from biological membranes to world sheets of strings in theories of fundamental interactions. In many applications it is a good approximation to assume that the surfaces possess no tension. Their statistical properties are then governed by curvature energies only, which allow for gigantic out-of-plane undulations. These fluctuations are the “entropic” origin of long-range repulsive forces in layered surface systems. Theoretical estimates of these forces for simple model surfaces are surveyed and compared with recent Monte Carlo simulations.

  13. Origin of cosmological density fluctuations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carr, B.J.

    1984-11-01

    The density fluctuations required to explain the large-scale cosmological structure may have arisen spontaneously as a result of a phase transition in the early Universe. There are several ways in which such fluctuations may have ben produced, and they could have a variety of spectra, so one should not necessarily expect all features of the large-scale structure to derive from a simple power law spectrum. Some features may even result from astrophysical amplification mechanisms rather than gravitational instability. 128 references

  14. Fluctuation microscopy analysis of amorphous silicon models

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gibson, J.M., E-mail: jmgibson@fsu.edu [Northeastern University, Department of Physics, Boston MA 02115 (United States); FAMU/FSU Joint College of Engineering, 225 Pottsdamer Street, Tallahassee, FL 32310 (United States); Treacy, M.M.J. [Arizona State University, Department of Physics, Tempe AZ 85287 (United States)

    2017-05-15

    Highlights: • Studied competing computer models for amorphous silicon and simulated fluctuation microscopy data. • Show that only paracrystalline/random network composite can fit published data. • Specifically show that pure random network or random network with void models do not fit available data. • Identify a new means to measure volume fraction of ordered material. • Identify unreported limitations of the Debye model for simulating fluctuation microscopy data. - Abstract: Using computer-generated models we discuss the use of fluctuation electron microscopy (FEM) to identify the structure of amorphous silicon. We show that a combination of variable resolution FEM to measure the correlation length, with correlograph analysis to obtain the structural motif, can pin down structural correlations. We introduce the method of correlograph variance as a promising means of independently measuring the volume fraction of a paracrystalline composite. From comparisons with published data, we affirm that only a composite material of paracrystalline and continuous random network that is substantially paracrystalline could explain the existing experimental data, and point the way to more precise measurements on amorphous semiconductors. The results are of general interest for other classes of disordered materials.

  15. Fluctuation microscopy analysis of amorphous silicon models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gibson, J.M.; Treacy, M.M.J.

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: • Studied competing computer models for amorphous silicon and simulated fluctuation microscopy data. • Show that only paracrystalline/random network composite can fit published data. • Specifically show that pure random network or random network with void models do not fit available data. • Identify a new means to measure volume fraction of ordered material. • Identify unreported limitations of the Debye model for simulating fluctuation microscopy data. - Abstract: Using computer-generated models we discuss the use of fluctuation electron microscopy (FEM) to identify the structure of amorphous silicon. We show that a combination of variable resolution FEM to measure the correlation length, with correlograph analysis to obtain the structural motif, can pin down structural correlations. We introduce the method of correlograph variance as a promising means of independently measuring the volume fraction of a paracrystalline composite. From comparisons with published data, we affirm that only a composite material of paracrystalline and continuous random network that is substantially paracrystalline could explain the existing experimental data, and point the way to more precise measurements on amorphous semiconductors. The results are of general interest for other classes of disordered materials.

  16. Prey preferences of the snow leopard (Panthera uncia): regional diet specificity holds global significance for conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyngdoh, Salvador; Shrotriya, Shivam; Goyal, Surendra P; Clements, Hayley; Hayward, Matthew W; Habib, Bilal

    2014-01-01

    The endangered snow leopard is a large felid that is distributed over 1.83 million km(2) globally. Throughout its range it relies on a limited number of prey species in some of the most inhospitable landscapes on the planet where high rates of human persecution exist for both predator and prey. We reviewed 14 published and 11 unpublished studies pertaining to snow leopard diet throughout its range. We calculated prey consumption in terms of frequency of occurrence and biomass consumed based on 1696 analysed scats from throughout the snow leopard's range. Prey biomass consumed was calculated based on the Ackerman's linear correction factor. We identified four distinct physiographic and snow leopard prey type zones, using cluster analysis that had unique prey assemblages and had key prey characteristics which supported snow leopard occurrence there. Levin's index showed the snow leopard had a specialized dietary niche breadth. The main prey of the snow leopard were Siberian ibex (Capra sibrica), blue sheep (Pseudois nayaur), Himalayan tahr (Hemitragus jemlahicus), argali (Ovis ammon) and marmots (Marmota spp). The significantly preferred prey species of snow leopard weighed 55±5 kg, while the preferred prey weight range of snow leopard was 36-76 kg with a significant preference for Siberian ibex and blue sheep. Our meta-analysis identified critical dietary resources for snow leopards throughout their distribution and illustrates the importance of understanding regional variation in species ecology; particularly prey species that have global implications for conservation.

  17. Fluctuation-Driven Neural Dynamics Reproduce Drosophila Locomotor Patterns.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Maesani

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available The neural mechanisms determining the timing of even simple actions, such as when to walk or rest, are largely mysterious. One intriguing, but untested, hypothesis posits a role for ongoing activity fluctuations in neurons of central action selection circuits that drive animal behavior from moment to moment. To examine how fluctuating activity can contribute to action timing, we paired high-resolution measurements of freely walking Drosophila melanogaster with data-driven neural network modeling and dynamical systems analysis. We generated fluctuation-driven network models whose outputs-locomotor bouts-matched those measured from sensory-deprived Drosophila. From these models, we identified those that could also reproduce a second, unrelated dataset: the complex time-course of odor-evoked walking for genetically diverse Drosophila strains. Dynamical models that best reproduced both Drosophila basal and odor-evoked locomotor patterns exhibited specific characteristics. First, ongoing fluctuations were required. In a stochastic resonance-like manner, these fluctuations allowed neural activity to escape stable equilibria and to exceed a threshold for locomotion. Second, odor-induced shifts of equilibria in these models caused a depression in locomotor frequency following olfactory stimulation. Our models predict that activity fluctuations in action selection circuits cause behavioral output to more closely match sensory drive and may therefore enhance navigation in complex sensory environments. Together these data reveal how simple neural dynamics, when coupled with activity fluctuations, can give rise to complex patterns of animal behavior.

  18. Lake level fluctuations boost toxic cyanobacterial "oligotrophic blooms".

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristiana Callieri

    Full Text Available Global warming has been shown to strongly influence inland water systems, producing noticeable increases in water temperatures. Rising temperatures, especially when combined with widespread nutrient pollution, directly favour the growth of toxic cyanobacteria. Climate changes have also altered natural water level fluctuations increasing the probability of extreme events as dry periods followed by heavy rains. The massive appearance of Dolichospermum lemmermannii ( = planktonic Anabaena, a toxic species absent from the pelagic zone of the subalpine oligotrophic Lake Maggiore before 2005, could be a consequence of the unusual fluctuations of lake level in recent years. We hypothesized that these fluctuations may favour the cyanobacterium as result of nutrient pulses from the biofilms formed in the littoral zone when the lake level is high. To help verify this, we exposed artificial substrates in the lake, and evaluated their nutrient enrichment and release after desiccation, together with measurements of fluctuations in lake level, precipitation and D. lemmermannii population. The highest percentage of P release and the lowest C:P molar ratio of released nutrients coincided with the summer appearance of the D. lemmermannii bloom. The P pulse indicates that fluctuations in level counteract nutrient limitation in this lake and it is suggested that this may apply more widely to other oligotrophic lakes. In view of the predicted increase in water level fluctuations due to climate change, it is important to try to minimize such fluctuations in order to mitigate the occurrence of cyanobacterial blooms.

  19. Morphology of seahorse head hydrodynamically aids in capture of evasive prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gemmell, Brad J; Sheng, Jian; Buskey, Edward J

    2013-01-01

    Syngnathid fish (seahorses, pipefish and sea dragons) are slow swimmers yet capture evasive prey (copepods) using a technique known as the 'pivot' feeding, which involves rapid movement to overcome prey escape capabilities. However, this feeding mode functions only at short range and requires approaching very closely to hydrodynamically sensitive prey without triggering an escape. Here we investigate the role of head morphology on prey capture using holographic and particle image velocimetry (PIV). We show that head morphology functions to create a reduced fluid deformation zone, minimizing hydrodynamic disturbance where feeding strikes occur (above the end of the snout), and permits syngnathid fish to approach highly sensitive copepod prey (Acartia tonsa) undetected. The results explain how these animals can successfully employ short range 'pivot' feeding effectively on evasive prey. The need to approach prey with stealth may have selected for a head shape that produces lower deformation rates than other fish.

  20. Prey preference of snow leopard (Panthera uncia in South Gobi, Mongolia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wasim Shehzad

    Full Text Available Accurate information about the diet of large carnivores that are elusive and inhabit inaccessible terrain, is required to properly design conservation strategies. Predation on livestock and retaliatory killing of predators have become serious issues throughout the range of the snow leopard. Several feeding ecology studies of snow leopards have been conducted using classical approaches. These techniques have inherent limitations in their ability to properly identify both snow leopard feces and prey taxa. To examine the frequency of livestock prey and nearly-threatened argali in the diet of the snow leopard, we employed the recently developed DNA-based diet approach to study a snow leopard population located in the Tost Mountains, South Gobi, Mongolia. After DNA was extracted from the feces, a region of ∼100 bp long from mitochondrial 12S rRNA gene was amplified, making use of universal primers for vertebrates and a blocking oligonucleotide specific to snow leopard DNA. The amplicons were then sequenced using a next-generation sequencing platform. We observed a total of five different prey items from 81 fecal samples. Siberian ibex predominated the diet (in 70.4% of the feces, followed by domestic goat (17.3% and argali sheep (8.6%. The major part of the diet was comprised of large ungulates (in 98.8% of the feces including wild ungulates (79% and domestic livestock (19.7%. The findings of the present study will help to understand the feeding ecology of the snow leopard, as well as to address the conservation and management issues pertaining to this wild cat.

  1. Pollutants and fish predator/prey behavior: A review of laboratory and field approaches

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judith S. WEIS, Allison CANDELMO

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Fish behavior can be altered by contaminants. There is an extensive literature on laboratory behavioral assays, with many chemicals impairing feeding or predator avoidance. However, there is not extensive work on fishes that live in contaminated environments. Therefore, we then review our recent research on feeding and trophic relations of populations from contaminated estuaries compared with relatively unpolluted sites. The mummichog Fundulus heteroclitus, is a non-migratory fish; those from more contaminated areas are poor predators and slower to capture active prey (grass shrimp, Palaemonetes pugio. In the field, they consume much detritus and sediment, which is not nutritious. They are less active than fish from cleaner sites and more vulnerable to predation. They have altered thyroid glands and neurotransmitter levels, which may underlie altered behaviors. Fish from the reference site kept in tanks with sediment and food from the polluted site showed bioaccumulation and reduced prey capture after two months, although fish from the polluted site did not show significant improvement when maintained in a clean environment. Poor nutrition and predator avoidance may be responsible for their being smaller and having a shorter life span than reference fish. Bluefish Pomatomus saltatrix, are a marine species in which the young-of-the-year spend their first summer in estuaries. We found bioaccumulation of contaminants and reduced activity, schooling, and feeding in young-of-the-year bluefish from a relatively unpolluted site that were fed prey fish from a contaminated site. They also had altered thyroid glands and neurotransmitter levels. Many field-caught specimens had empty stomachs, which is rare in this species. In the fall, when they migrate back out to the ocean, they are smaller, slower, and more likely to starve or to be eaten than those that spent their summer in cleaner estuaries [Current Zoology 58 (1: 9-20, 2012].

  2. Variation in zooplankton prey distribution determines marine foraging distributions of breeding Cassin's Auklet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertram, Douglas F.; Mackas, David L.; Welch, David W.; Boyd, W. Sean; Ryder, John L.; Galbraith, Moira; Hedd, April; Morgan, Ken; O'Hara, Patrick D.

    2017-11-01

    To investigate the causal basis for patterns of seabird foraging distributions during breeding we integrated data from ship-board seabird and zooplankton surveys, aerial radio telemetry, and colony-based research programs. We examined the marine distributions of Cassin's Auklet (Ptychoramphus aleuticus) breeding on Triangle Island, in the Northeast Pacific off the coast of B.C., Canada using surveys conducted in 1999, 2000, and 2001. Concurrently, we sampled zooplankton at 16 stations along a cross shelf transect in the vicinity of Triangle Island. In 1999 and 2000, when populations of the preferred copepod prey Neocalanus cristatus were available at deep-water stations (1000-2000 m), the majority of the auklets were concentrated SW of the colony 40-75 km offshore and parallel to, but 35 -50 km beyond the shelf break in deep water (1200-2000 m). Birds did not fly farther out to sea to where prey was five times more abundant when N. cristatus could be found at lower abundance levels, closer to the colony. In 2001, N. cristatus were virtually absent at the deep-water stations, likely as a result of massive salp (family Salpidae) aggregations which may have consumed and displaced the seabirds' preferred prey. We demonstrate that while birds were still able to locate and provision chicks with N. cristatus in 2001, they had to forage farther away from the colony in order to do so. Our telemetry results are generally consistent with analyses of at-sea distributions of Cassin's Auklets derived from ship-board surveys (1990-2010) both of which have contributed to the design of the proposed Scott Islands marine National Wildlife Area, the first of its kind in Canada.

  3. Ambush frequency should increase over time during optimal predator search for prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alpern, Steve; Fokkink, Robbert; Timmer, Marco; Casas, Jérôme

    2011-11-07

    We advance and apply the mathematical theory of search games to model the problem faced by a predator searching for prey. Two search modes are available: ambush and cruising search. Some species can adopt either mode, with their choice at a given time traditionally explained in terms of varying habitat and physiological conditions. We present an additional explanation of the observed predator alternation between these search modes, which is based on the dynamical nature of the search game they are playing: the possibility of ambush decreases the propensity of the prey to frequently change locations and thereby renders it more susceptible to the systematic cruising search portion of the strategy. This heuristic explanation is supported by showing that in a new idealized search game where the predator is allowed to ambush or search at any time, and the prey can change locations at intermittent times, optimal predator play requires an alternation (or mixture) over time of ambush and cruise search. Thus, our game is an extension of the well-studied 'Princess and Monster' search game. Search games are zero sum games, where the pay-off is the capture time and neither the Searcher nor the Hider knows the location of the other. We are able to determine the optimal mixture of the search modes when the predator uses a mixture which is constant over time, and also to determine how the mode mixture changes over time when dynamic strategies are allowed (the ambush probability increases over time). In particular, we establish the 'square root law of search predation': the optimal proportion of active search equals the square root of the fraction of the region that has not yet been explored.

  4. Ongoing removals of invasive lionfish in Honduras and their effect on native Caribbean prey fishes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Friederike Peiffer

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The invasion of Indo-Pacific lionfish is one of the most pressing concerns in the context of coral reef conservation throughout the Caribbean. Invasive lionfish threaten Caribbean fish communities by feeding on a wide range of native prey species, some of which have high ecological and economic value. In Roatan (Honduras a local non-governmental organisation (i.e. Roatan Marine Park trains residents and tourists in the use of spears to remove invasive lionfish. Here, we assess the effectiveness of local removal efforts in reducing lionfish populations. We ask whether reefs subject to relatively frequent removals support more diverse and abundant native fish assemblages compared to sites were no removals take place. Lionfish biomass, as well as density and diversity of native prey species were quantified on reefs subject to regular and no removal efforts. Reefs subject to regular lionfish removals (two to three removals month−1 with a mean catch per unit effort of 2.76 ± 1.72 lionfish fisher−1 h−1 had 95% lower lionfish biomass compared to non-removal sites. Sites subject to lionfish removals supported 30% higher densities of native prey-sized fishes compared to sites subject to no removal efforts. We found no evidence that species richness and diversity of native fish communities differ between removal and non-removal sites. We conclude that opportunistic voluntary removals are an effective management intervention to reduce lionfish populations locally and might alleviate negative impacts of lionfish predation. We recommend that local management and the diving industry cooperate to cost-effectively extend the spatial scale at which removal regimes are currently sustained.

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    2003-01-01

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    If you wish to participate in one of the following courses, please discuss with your supervisor and apply electronically directly from the course description pages that can be found on the Web at: http://www.cern.ch/Training/ or fill in an "application for training" form available from your Divisional Secretariat or from your DTO (Divisional Training Officer). Applications will be accepted in the order of their receipt. TECHNICAL TRAINING Monique Duval tel. 74924 technical.training@cern.ch ** The number of places available may vary. Please check our Web site to find out the current availability. Places are available in the following courses: MATLAB Fundamentals and Programming Techniques (ML01) :2 & 3.12.03 (2 days) Oracle 8i : SQL : 3 - 5.12.03 (3 days) The EDMS MTF in practice : 5.12.03 (afternoon, free of charge) Modeling Dynamic Systems with Simulink (SL01) : 8 & 9.12.03 (2 days) Signal Processing with MATLAB (SG01) : 11 & ...

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    2004-01-01

    If you wish to participate in one of the following courses, please discuss with your supervisor and apply electronically directly from the course description pages that can be found on the Web at: http://www.cern.ch/Training/ or fill in an "application for training" form available from your Divisional Secretariat or from your DTO (Divisional Training Officer). Applications will be accepted in the order of their receipt.TECHNICAL TRAINING Monique Duval tel. 74924 technical.training@cern.ch ** The number of places available may vary. Please check our Web site to find out the current availability. Places are available in the following courses: The JAVA Programming Language Level 1 : 9 & 10.1.2004 (2 days) The JAVA Programming Language Level 2 : 11 to 13.1.2004 (3 days) LabVIEW base 1 : 25 - 27.2.2004 (3 jours) CLEAN-2002 : Working in a Cleanroom : 10.3.2004 (afternoon - free of charge) C++ for Particle Physicists : 8 - 12.3.2004 ( 6 X 4-hour sessions) LabVIEW Basics 1 : 22 - 24.3.20...

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    If you wish to participate in one of the following courses, please discuss with your supervisor and apply electronically directly from the course description pages that can be found on the Web at: http://www.cern.ch/Training/ or fill in an "application for training" form available from your Divisional Secretariat or from your DTO (Divisional Training Officer). Applications will be accepted in the order of their receipt. TECHNICAL TRAINING Monique Duval tel. 74924 technical.training@cern.ch ** The number of places available may vary. Please check our Web site to find out the current availability. Places are available in the following courses: The JAVA Programming Language Level 1 :9 & 10.1.2004 (2 days) The JAVA Programming Language Level 2 : 11 to 13.1.2004 (3 days) Hands-on Introduction to Python Programming : 16 - 18.2.2004 (3 days - free of charge) CLEAN-2002 : Working in a Cleanroom : 10.3.2004 (afternoon - free of charge) C++ for Particle Physicists : 8 - 12.3.2004...

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    2003-01-01

    If you wish to participate in one of these courses, please discuss with your supervisor and apply electronically directly from the course description pages that can be found on the Web at: http://www.cern.ch/Training/ or fill in an "application for training" form available from your Divisional Secretariat or from your DTO (Divisional Training Officer). Applications will be accepted in the order of their receipt. ** The number of places available may vary. Please check our Web site to find out the current availability. Places are available in the following courses : EXCEL 2000 - niveau 1 : 20 & 22.10.03 (2 jours) CLEAN-2002 : Working in a Cleanroom (free of charge) : 23.10.03 (half day) The EDMS-MTF in practice (free of charge) :  28 -  30.10.03 (6 half-day sessions) AutoCAD 2002 - Level 1 : 3, 4, 12, 13.11.03 (4 days) LabVIEW TestStand ver. 3 : 4 & 5.11.03 (2 days) Introduction to Pspice : 4.11.03 p.m. (half-day) Hands-on Introduction to Python Programm...

  12. Small prey species' behaviour and welfare: implications for veterinary professionals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McBride, E Anne

    2017-08-01

    People have obligations to ensure the welfare of animals under their care. Offences under the UK Animal Welfare Act are acts, or failures of action, causing unnecessary suffering. Veterinary professionals need to be able to provide current, scientifically based prophylactic advice, and respect the limits of their expertise. The ethical concept of a life worth living and the Five Freedoms are core to welfare. Behaviour is a central component, both influencing and influenced by physical health. Owners frequently misunderstand the behaviour of small prey mammals and how to meet their needs. This review provides insight into the physical-social (external) and the cognitive-emotional (internal) environments of small prey mammals, contextualised within an evolutionary perspective. This is extrapolated to captivity and practical suggestions given for meeting behavioural freedoms and enhancing client understanding and enjoyment of their animals, thereby improving welfare. © 2017 British Small Animal Veterinary Association.

  13. The Dynamics of an Impulsive Predator-Prey System with Stage Structure and Holling Type III Functional Response

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhixiang Ju

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Based on the biological resource management of natural resources, a stage-structured predator-prey model with Holling type III functional response, birth pulse, and impulsive harvesting at different moments is proposed in this paper. By applying comparison theorem and some analysis techniques, the global attractivity of predator-extinction periodic solution and the permanence of this system are studied. At last, examples and numerical simulations are given to verify the validity of the main results.

  14. Qualitative Analysis of a Diffusive Ratio-Dependent Holling-Tanner Predator-Prey Model with Smith Growth

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zongmin Yue

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available We investigated the dynamics of a diffusive ratio-dependent Holling-Tanner predator-prey model with Smith growth subject to zero-flux boundary condition. Some qualitative properties, including the dissipation, persistence, and local and global stability of positive constant solution, are discussed. Moreover, we give the refined a priori estimates of positive solutions and derive some results for the existence and nonexistence of nonconstant positive steady state.

  15. Cyclicity and variability in prey dynamics strengthens predator numerical response: the effects of vole fluctuations on white stork productivity

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hušek, J.; Adamík, P.; Albrecht, Tomáš; Cepák, J.; Kania, W.; Mikolášková, E.; Tkadlec, Emil; Stenseth, N. C.

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 55, č. 2 (2013), s. 363-375 ISSN 1438-3896 R&D Projects: GA MŠk LC06073 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60930519 Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : Environmental gradient * Periodicity * Reproductive flexibility * Resource pulse * Trophic interactions Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 1.700, year: 2013

  16. Vertebrate predator-prey interactions in a seasonal environment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schmidt, Niels Martin; Berg, Thomas B; Forchhammer, Mads

    2008-01-01

    erminea predation and stabilising predation from the generalist predators, in Zackenbergdalen mainly the arctic fox Alopex lagopus. In Zackenbergdalen, however, the coupling between the specialist stoat and the lemming population is relatively weak. During summer, the predation pressure is high......The High Arctic, with its low number of species, is characterised by a relatively simple ecosystem, and the vertebrate predator-prey interactions in the valley Zackenbergdalen in Northeast Greenland are centred around the collared lemming Dicrostonyx groenlandicus and its multiple predators...

  17. The Neuronal Control of Flying Prey Interception in Dragonflies

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-08-19

    Gonzalez-Bellido’s fluorescent dye ( Lucifer -yellow) injections illuminated for the first time the anatomy of the output regions of the TSDNs...out in Cape Cod (MA) to test the effect of bead size(C), and in the Olberg Laboratory (Union College, NY) to test the effect of bead speed by...AFRL-OSR-VA-TR-2014-0193 THE NEURONAL CONTROL OF FLYING PREY INTERCEPTION IN DRAGONFLIES Robert Olberg TRUSTEES OF UNION COLLEGE IN THE TOWN OF

  18. The Effects of Ocean Acidification on Predator-Prey Interactions between Mya arenaria and Callinectes sapidus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Longmire, K.; Glaspie, C.; Seitz, R.

    2016-02-01

    The study examined the implications of ocean acidification for Mya arenaria and the predator-prey dynamics between M. arenaria and Callinectes sapidus. Clams were subjected to either ambient conditions or acidified conditions and grown over four weeks. Mortality, shell lengths, and biomass (ash-free dry weights) were recorded for clams destructively sampled each week. Clams were subjected to behavioral experiments to determine their response to an approaching physical disturbance. Crabs were exposed to acidified or ambient conditions for 48 hours, and placed in 48 hour mesocosm trials with clams. Shell lengths, mortality and biomass between the ambient and acidified clams were not significantly different between acidified and ambient treatments. Shell ash weights were lower for acidified clams, evidence of shell dissolution. In the behavioral experiment, ocean acidification reduced the ability of clams to respond to a predator stimulus. Lastly, in predator-prey mesocosm trials, in ambient conditions, crabs ate all or none of the available clams, whereas acidified crabs ate all available clams in many trials and ate at least one acidified clam per trial. The early effects of ocean acidification on M. arenaria will manifest in trophic interactions with other species, rather than impacting M. arenaria alone.

  19. Arthropod prey of Wilson's Warblers in the understory of Douglas-fir forests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagar, J.C.; Dugger, K.M.; Starkey, E.E.

    2007-01-01

    Availability of food resources is an important factor in avian habitat selection. Food resources for terrestrial birds often are closely related to vegetation structure and composition. Identification of plant species important in supporting food resources may facilitate vegetation management to achieve objectives for providing bird habitat. We used fecal analysis to describe the diet of adult Wilson's Warblers (Wilsonia pusilla) that foraged in the understory of Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) forests in western Oregon during the breeding season. We sampled arthropods at the same sites where diet data were collected, and compared abundance and biomass of prey among seven common shrub species. Wilson's Warblers ate more caterpillars (Lepidoptera larvae), flies (Diptera), beetles (Coleoptera), and Homoptera than expected based on availability. Deciduous shrubs supported higher abundances of arthropod taxa and size classes used as prey by Wilson's Warblers than did evergreen shrubs. The development and maintenance of deciduous understory vegetation in conifer forests of the Pacific Northwest may be fundamental for conservation of food webs that support breeding Wilson's Warblers and other shrub-associated, insectivorous songbirds.

  20. Direct look from a predator shortens the risk-assessment time by prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sang-im Lee

    Full Text Available Decision making process is an important component of information use by animals and has already been studied in natural situations. Decision making takes time, which is expressed as a cost in evolutionary explanations of decision making abilities of animals. However, the duration of information assessment and decision making process has not been measured in a natural situation. Here, we use responses of wild magpies (Pica pica to predictably approaching humans to demonstrate that, regardless of whether the bird perceived high (decided to fly away or low (resumed foraging threat level, the bird assessed the situation faster when approaching humans looked directly at it than when the humans were not directly looking at it. This indicates that prey is able to extract more information about the predator's intentions and to respond sooner when the predator is continuously ("intently" looking at the prey. The results generally illustrate how an increase of information available to an individual leads to a shorter assessment and decision making process, confirming one of central tenets of psychology of information use in a wild bird species in its natural habitat.

  1. PLACES AVAILABLE

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    Technical Training; Tel. 74924

    2001-01-01

    Places are available in the following courses: Introduction to Databases :  3 - 4.7.01 (2 days) The JAVA programming language Level 2 : 4 - 6.7.01 (3 days) Enterprise JavaBeans :  9 - 11.7.01 (3 days) Design Patterns :  10 - 12.7.01 (3 days) C++ for Particle Physicists :  23 - 27.7.01 (6 3-hour lectures) If you wish to participate in one of these courses, please discuss with your supervisor and apply electronically directly from the course description pages that can be found on the Web at : http://www.cern.ch/Training/ or fill in an 'application for training' form available from your Divisional Secretariat or from your DTO (Divisional Training Officer). Applications will be accepted in the order of their receipt.

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    Technical Training; Tel. 74924

    2001-01-01

    Places are available in the following courses: Introduction to Perl 5 : 2 - 3.7.01 (2 days) Introduction to Databases :  3 - 4.7.01 (2 days) JAVA programming language Level 2 : 4 - 6.7.01 (3 days) Enterprise JavaBeans :  9 - 11.7.01 (3 days) Design Patterns :  10 - 12.7.01 (3 days) C++ for Particle Physicists :  23 - 27.7.01 (6 3-hour lectures) If you wish to participate in one of these courses, please discuss with your supervisor and apply electronically directly from the course description pages that can be found on the Web at : http://www.cern.ch/Training/ or fill in an 'application for training' form available from your Divisional Secretariat or from your DTO (Divisional Training Officer). Applications will be accepted in the order of their receipt.

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    2002-01-01

    Places are available in the following courses: CLEAN-2002 : Travailler en salle blanche (cours gratuit) : 13.08.2002 (matin) Introduction to the CERN Enginnering Data Management System :  27.8.02  (1 day) The CERN Engineering Data Management System for Advanced Users :  28.8.02  (1 day) If you wish to participate in one of these courses, please discuss with your supervisor and apply electronically directly from the course description pages that can be found on the Web at : Technical Training or fill in an 'application for training' form available from your Divisional Secretariat or from your DTO (Divisional Training Officer). Applications will be accepted in the order of their receipt. Technical Training Monique Duval Tel.74924 monique.duval@cern.ch    

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    Monique Duval

    2002-01-01

    Places are available in the following courses: C++ Programming Level 2 - Traps & Pitfalls:  16 - 19.7.02 (4 days) Frontpage 2000 - level 1 :  22 - 23.7.02  (2 days) Introduction à Windows 2000 au CERN : 24.7.02 (après-midi) CLEAN-2002 : Travailler en salle blanche (cours gratuit) : 13.08.2002 (matin) If you wish to participate in one of these courses, please discuss with your supervisor and apply electronically directly from the course description pages that can be found on the Web at : Technical Training or fill in an 'application for training' form available from your Divisional Secretariat or from your DTO (Divisional Training Officer). Applications will be accepted in the order of their receipt. Technical Training Monique Duval Tel.74924 monique.duval@cern.ch

  5. PLACES AVAILABLE

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    Monique Duval

    2002-01-01

    Places are available in the following courses: December 2002   PCAD Schémas - Débutants :  5 & 6.12.02  (2 jours) PCAD PCB - Débutants :  9 - 11.12.02  (3 jours) FrontPage 2000 - level 1:  9 & 10.12.02  (2 days) Introduction à la CAO Cadence (cours gratuit) :  10 & 11.12.02  (2 jours) If you wish to participate in one of these courses, please discuss with your supervisor and apply electronically directly from the course description pages that can be found on the Web at : Technical Training or fill in an 'application for training' form available from your Divisional Secretariat or from your DTO (Divisional Training Officer). Applications will be accepted in the order of their receipt. Technical Training Monique Duval Tel.74924 monique.duval@cern.ch

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    Places are available in the following courses: Conception de PCB rapides dans le flot Cadence : 11.6.03 (matin) EXCEL 2000 - level 1 : 12 & 13.6.03 (2 days) Introduction to PVSS : 16.6.03 (p.m.) Basic PVSS : 17 - 19.6.03 (3 days) Réalisation de PCB rapides dans le flot Cadence : 17.6.03 (matin) PVSS - JCOP Framework Tutorial : 20.6.03 (1 day) Programmation automate Schneider : Programmation automate Schneider TSX Premium - 2ème niveau : 24 - 27.6.03 (4 jours) - audience : toute personne qui veux maitriser la mise en uvre et la programmation des fonctions spécialisées d'un automate TSX Premium - objectifs : maitriser la mise en uvre et la programmation des fonctions spécialisées d'un automate TSX Premium Cours de sécurité : Etre TSO au CERN : Prochaines sessions : 24, 25 & 27.6.03 - 4, 5 & 7.11.03 (session de 3 jours) ** The number of places available may vary. Please check our Web site to find out the current availability. If you wish to participate in one of these courses, pl...

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    2000-01-01

    Places available Places are available in the following courses:   LabView hands-on 13.11.00 4 hours LabView Basics 1 14 - 16.11.00 3 days Nouveautés de WORD 19 et 20.10.00 2 jours ACCESS 1er niveau 30 - 31.10.00 2 jours Advanced aspects of the C language 2 - 3.11.00 2 days Introduction to Oracle SQL and PL/SQL 13 - 17.11.00 5 days C++ for Particle Physicists 20 - 24.11.00 6 lectures Develop PL/SQL Program Units 20 - 22.11.00 3 days Oracle Application Server Develop Web-Based Applications with PL/SQL 27 - 28.11.00 2 days Programmation TSX Premium 1 28.11 - 1.12.00 4 jours Programmation TSX Premium 2 12 - 15.12.00 4 jours If you wish to participate in one of these courses, please discuss with your supervisor and apply electronically directly from the course description pages that can be found on the Web at : http://www.cern.ch/Training/ or fill in an “application for training” form available from your Divisional Secretariat or from your DTO (Divisional Training Offi...

  8. PATTERNS OF PREY BIOMASS CONSUMPTION BY SMALL ODONTOCETES IN THE NORTHEASTERN COAST OF VENEZUELA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lenin E. Oviedo Correa

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Trophic relationships are conditioned by population dynamics of interacting species in the community (species present, food web connections among them, and the strength of interactions, and on the consequences of these species interactions depend various ecosystem processes such as productivity and nutrient flux. Odontocetes target a wide range of prey items and are adapted to feeding at different depths. The aim of this report is to describe the patterns of prey consumption by small odontocetes, incorporating natural predatory patterns into a potential management scheme of strategic food sources, for both human and marine predators. Using the geo-statistical analysis tool of ArcGIS 9.2, maps illustrating the intensity and location of prey consumption were made for species with a sighting index (SPUE > 0.15. The biomass consumption emphasized the differences in habitat use by species. The trends in distribution of prey biomass removal by odontocetes particularly suggest a stratification of prey consumption primarily in shelf waters, with a prey biomass that is comprised basically by demersal fish and small pelagics (including Sardinella aurita, and into transition-oceanic depths where most of the predatory pattern would potentially rely on pelagic - mesopelagic squid and myctophids. Overall the spatial tendencies in regionalization presented in this contribution will serve as a base-line to assess ecosystem health and evaluate management scenarios.   Las relaciones tróficas son reguladas por la dinámica poblacional de las especies que interactúan dentro de la comunidad (especies presentes, conexiones interespecíficas, y nivel de interacción y de las consecuencias de esas interacciones para procesos del ecosistema como la productividad y el flujo de nutrientes. El objetivo de este reporte es evaluar el patrón de consumo de biomasa por odontocetos de menor tamaño en la costa Nororiental de Venezuela, incorporando patrones de depredaci

  9. Fluctuations in Overlapping Generations Economies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tvede, Mich

    . The approach to existence of endogenous fluctuations is basic in the sense that the prime ingredients are the implicit function theorem and linear algebra. Moreover the approach is applied to show that for an open and dense set of utility functions there exist endowment vectors such that sunspot equilibria...

  10. Magnetic fluctuations in turbulent flow

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ruzmaikin, A.A.

    1990-01-01

    For dynamo excitation of the magnetic fluctuations in infinite fluid only a sufficient large magnetic Reynolds number is needed. In a infinite region an additional condition appears. Due to the diffusion of the magnetic field through the boundaries a size of the region must be large enough compare with a correlation length of the turbulence. Author)

  11. Firm default and aggregate fluctuations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jacobson, Tor; Linde, Jesper; Roszbach, Kasper

    This paper studies the relationship between macroeconomic fluctuations and corporate defaults while conditioning on industry affiliation and an extensive set of firm-specific factors. By using a panel data set for virtually all incorporated Swedish businesses over 1990-2009, a period which includes

  12. Fluctuating hydrodynamics for ionic liquids

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lazaridis, Konstantinos [Department of Mathematics and Statistics, Washington State University, Pullman, 99163 (United States); Wickham, Logan [Department of Computer Science, Washington State University, Richland, 99354 (United States); Voulgarakis, Nikolaos, E-mail: n.voulgarakis@wsu.edu [Department of Mathematics and Statistics, Washington State University, Pullman, 99163 (United States)

    2017-04-25

    We present a mean-field fluctuating hydrodynamics (FHD) method for studying the structural and transport properties of ionic liquids in bulk and near electrified surfaces. The free energy of the system consists of two competing terms: (1) a Landau–Lifshitz functional that models the spontaneous separation of the ionic groups, and (2) the standard mean-field electrostatic interaction between the ions in the liquid. The numerical approach used to solve the resulting FHD-Poisson equations is very efficient and models thermal fluctuations with remarkable accuracy. Such density fluctuations are sufficiently strong to excite the experimentally observed spontaneous formation of liquid nano-domains. Statistical analysis of our simulations provides quantitative information about the properties of ionic liquids, such as the mixing quality, stability, and the size of the nano-domains. Our model, thus, can be adequately parameterized by directly comparing our prediction with experimental measurements and all-atom simulations. Conclusively, this work can serve as a practical mathematical tool for testing various theories and designing more efficient mixtures of ionic liquids. - Highlights: • A new fluctuating hydrodynamics method for ionic liquids. • Description of ionic liquid morphology in bulk and near electrified surfaces. • Direct comparison with experimental measurements.

  13. Prey selection of Tawny owls (Strix aluco) on Yellow necked mouse and Bank Vole

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Forsom, H. M.; Sunde, P.; Overskaug, K.

    As predators owls may have a strong impact on mortality of their favourite prey, and may therefore act as important selective agents on their prey species. Little is known, however, about whether owls choose prey randomly or if some prey items suffer a higher risk of predation due to certain life...

  14. Mountain lions prey selectively on prion-infected mule deer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krumm, Caroline E.; Conner, Mary M.; Hobbs, N. Thompson; Hunter, Don O.; Miller, Michael W.

    2010-01-01

    The possibility that predators choose prey selectively based on age or condition has been suggested but rarely tested. We examined whether mountain lions (Puma concolor) selectively prey upon mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) infected with chronic wasting disease, a prion disease. We located kill sites of mountain lions in the northern Front Range of Colorado, USA, and compared disease prevalence among lion-killed adult (≥2 years old) deer with prevalence among sympatric deer taken by hunters in the vicinity of kill sites. Hunter-killed female deer were less likely to be infected than males (odds ratios (OR) = 0.2, 95% confidence intervals (CI) = 0.1–0.6; p = 0.015). However, both female (OR = 8.5, 95% CI = 2.3–30.9) and male deer (OR = 3.2, 95% CI = 1–10) killed by a mountain lion were more likely to be infected than same-sex deer killed in the vicinity by a hunter (p < 0.001), suggesting that mountain lions in this area actively selected prion-infected individuals when targeting adult mule deer as prey items. PMID:19864271

  15. Predator size and the suitability of a common prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erickson, Kristin S; Morse, D H

    1997-02-01

     Although a predator's mass should influence the suitability of its prey, this subject has received little direct attention. We studied the capture and processing of an abundant syrphid fly Toxomerus marginatus (c. 4 mg) by 0.6- to 40-mg juvenile crab spiders Misumena vatia (Thomisidae) to determine how profitability, relative profitability (profitability/predator mass), overall gain in mass, and relative gain in mass differed with predator mass, and whether foraging changed concurrently. In multi-prey experiments, the smallest successful spiders (0.6-3.0 mg) extracted less mass from flies, and did so more slowly, than large spiders. This gain was proportionately similar to that of 10- to 40-mg spiders with access to many Toxomerus. However, many small spiders failed to capture flies. When we gave spiders only a single Toxomerus, the smallest ones again extracted mass more slowly than the large ones and increased in mass less than the large ones, but increased in mass proportionately more than large ones. Relative gain in mass from a single prey decreased with increasing spider mass. Spiders larger than 10 mg all extracted similar amounts of mass from a single Toxomerus at similar rates, but varied in time spent between captures. Thus, Toxomerus changes with spider mass from a large, hard-to-capture bonanza to a small, easy-to-capture item of low per capita value. However, Toxomerus is common enough that large spiders can capture it en masse, thereby compensating for its decline in per capita value.

  16. Brominated flame retardants in birds of prey from Flanders, Belgium

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Voorspoels, S.; Covaci, A.; Schepens, P. [Antwerp Univ., Wilrijk (Belgium). Toxicological Centre

    2004-09-15

    Since their introduction on the market, environmental levels of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) are continuously increasing. This is caused by spillage and emission during production and use, but also by improper disposal at the end-of-life of the products in which they are used. These chemicals are highly persistent and lipophilic which results in bioaccumulation in fatty tissues of biota and biomagnification throughout the food chain. Because PBDEs have a high toxicological potential, this biomagnification can have serious health consequences for top-predators, such as birds of prey. Data about PBDE concentrations in terrestrial biota, especially in birds of prey, is scarce. A rapid increase of PBDE concentrations has been seen in pooled guillemot (Uria algae) eggs from the Baltic proper7 during the late 1970's and early 1980's, followed by a decrease during the 1990's8. In herring gull eggs from the Great Lakes, the PBDE concentrations increased exponentially from 1981 to 2000. Most of the studies look at concentrations in eggs, while less is known about tissue levels and distribution of these pollutants in birds of prey.

  17. Jewelled spiders manipulate colour-lure geometry to deceive prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Thomas E

    2017-03-01

    Selection is expected to favour the evolution of efficacy in visual communication. This extends to deceptive systems, and predicts functional links between the structure of visual signals and their behavioural presentation. Work to date has primarily focused on colour, however, thereby understating the multicomponent nature of visual signals. Here I examined the relationship between signal structure, presentation behaviour, and efficacy in the context of colour-based prey luring. I used the polymorphic orb-web spider Gasteracantha fornicata , whose yellow- or white-and-black striped dorsal colours have been broadly implicated in prey attraction. In a manipulative assay, I found that spiders actively control the orientation of their conspicuous banded signals in the web, with a distinct preference for near-diagonal bearings. Further field-based study identified a predictive relationship between pattern orientation and prey interception rates, with a local maximum at the spiders' preferred orientation. There were no morph-specific effects on capture success, either singularly or via an interaction with pattern orientation. These results reveal a dynamic element in a traditionally 'static' signalling context, and imply differential functions for chromatic and geometric signal components across visual contexts. More broadly, they underscore how multicomponent signal designs and display behaviours may coevolve to enhance efficacy in visual deception. © 2017 The Author(s).

  18. Biologically meaningful scents: a framework for understanding predator-prey research across disciplines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parsons, Michael H; Apfelbach, Raimund; Banks, Peter B; Cameron, Elissa Z; Dickman, Chris R; Frank, Anke S K; Jones, Menna E; McGregor, Ian S; McLean, Stuart; Müller-Schwarze, Dietland; Sparrow, Elisa E; Blumstein, Daniel T

    2018-02-01

    Fear of predation is a universal motivator. Because predators hunt using stealth and surprise, there is a widespread ability among prey to assess risk from chemical information - scents - in their environment. Consequently, scents often act as particularly strong modulators of memory and emotions. Recent advances in ecological research and analytical technology are leading to novel ways to use this chemical information to create effective attractants, repellents and anti-anxiolytic compounds for wildlife managers, conservation biologists and health practitioners. However, there is extensive variation in the design, results, and interpretation of studies of olfactory-based risk discrimination. To understand the highly variable literature in this area, we adopt a multi-disciplinary approach and synthesize the latest findings from neurobiology, chemical ecology, and ethology to propose a contemporary framework that accounts for such disparate factors as the time-limited stability of chemicals, highly canalized mechanisms that influence prey responses, and the context within which these scents are detected (e.g. availability of alternative resources, perceived shelter, and ambient physical parameters). This framework helps to account for the wide range of reported responses by prey to predator scents, and explains, paradoxically, how the same individual predator scent can be interpreted as either safe or dangerous to a prey animal depending on how, when and where the cue was deposited. We provide a hypothetical example to illustrate the most common factors that influence how a predator scent (from dingoes, Canis dingo) may both attract and repel the same target organism (kangaroos, Macropus spp.). This framework identifies the catalysts that enable dynamic scents, odours or odorants to be used as attractants as well as deterrents. Because effective scent tools often relate to traumatic memories (fear and/or anxiety) that cause future avoidance, this information may

  19. Energetic solutions of Rock Sandpipers to harsh winter conditions rely on prey quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruthrauff, Daniel R.; Dekinga, Anne; Gill, Robert E.; Piersma, Theunis

    2018-01-01

    Rock Sandpipers Calidris ptilocnemis have the most northerly non-breeding distribution of any shorebird in the Pacific Basin (upper Cook Inlet, Alaska; 61°N, 151°W). In terms of freezing temperatures, persistent winds and pervasive ice, this site is the harshest used by shorebirds during winter. We integrated physiological, metabolic, behavioural and environmental aspects of the non-breeding ecology of Rock Sandpipers at the northern extent of their range to determine the relative importance of these factors in facilitating their unique non-breeding ecology. Not surprisingly, estimated daily energetic demands were greatest during January, the coldest period of winter. These estimates were greatest for foraging birds, and exceeded basal metabolic rates by a factor of 6.5, a scope of increase that approaches the maximum sustained rate of energetic output by shorebirds during periods of migration, but far exceeds these periods in duration. We assessed the quality of their primary prey, the bivalve Macoma balthica, to determine the daily foraging duration required by Rock Sandpipers to satisfy such energetic demands. Based on size-specific estimates of M. balthica quality, Rock Sandpipers require over 13 h/day of foraging time in upper Cook Inlet in January, even when feeding on the highest quality prey. This range approaches the average daily duration of mudflat availability in this region (c. 18 h), a maximum value that annually decreases due to the accumulation of shore-fast ice. Rock Sandpipers are likely to maximize access to foraging sites by following the exposure of ice-free mudflats across the upper Cook Inlet region and by selecting smaller, higher quality M. balthica to minimize foraging times. Ultimately, this unusual non-breeding ecology relies on the high quality of their prey resources. Compared with other sites across their range, M. balthica from upper Cook Inlet have relatively light shells, potentially the result of the region

  20. Resource availability and diet in Harpy Eagle breeding territories on the Xingu River, Brazilian Amazon

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    FH. Aguiar-Silva

    Full Text Available Abstract In the Tapajos-Xingu interfluve, one of the largest birds of prey, the Harpy Eagle, is under intense anthropogenic pressure due to historical and recent reductions in forest cover. We studied prey availability and use by Harpy Eagle on six breeding territories on the low- and mid-Xingu River, between 2013 and 2015. We evaluated food resource availability using the environmental-surveys database from two methods: terrestrial surveys (RAPELD method and fauna rescue/flushing before vegetation suppression for the Belo Monte Hydroelectric Complex construction. Harpy Eagle diet was identified by prey remains sampled around six nest trees. Eighteen species of mammals, birds and reptiles comprised the prey items. Most prey species were sloths, primates and porcupines, which have arboreal habits and are found in forested areas, but two species, hoatzin and iguana, are usually associated with riverine habitats. The proportion of prey from each species predated on the nest best studied was different from estimated availability (χ2 = 54.23; df = 16; p < 0.001, however there was a positive correlation (rs = 0.7; p < 0.01 between prey species consumed and abundance available, where the predation was more on species more abundant. Continuous monitoring of the Harpy Eagle diet at these nests could evidence changes in the assemblage of prey species available for Harpy Eagles, due to changes in the seasonal flood pulse of the Xingu River to be caused by the operation of the hydroelectric dam, and changes in habitat features by forest reduction around breeding territories. We believe that it is important to consider the protection of remnants of forested areas in the landscape matrix surrounding the breeding territories to maintain the food resource availability and allow all pairs to successfully reproduce.