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Sample records for indirectly causing predation

  1. Predators indirectly control vector-borne disease: linking predator-prey and host-pathogen models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Sean M; Borer, Elizabeth T; Hosseini, Parviez R

    2010-01-06

    Pathogens transmitted by arthropod vectors are common in human populations, agricultural systems and natural communities. Transmission of these vector-borne pathogens depends on the population dynamics of the vector species as well as its interactions with other species within the community. In particular, predation may be sufficient to control pathogen prevalence indirectly via the vector. To examine the indirect effect of predators on vectored-pathogen dynamics, we developed a theoretical model that integrates predator-prey and host-pathogen theory. We used this model to determine whether predation can prevent pathogen persistence or alter the stability of host-pathogen dynamics. We found that, in the absence of predation, pathogen prevalence in the host increases with vector fecundity, whereas predation on the vector causes pathogen prevalence to decline, or even become extinct, with increasing vector fecundity. We also found that predation on a vector may drastically slow the initial spread of a pathogen. The predator can increase host abundance indirectly by reducing or eliminating infection in the host population. These results highlight the importance of studying interactions that, within the greater community, may alter our predictions when studying disease dynamics. From an applied perspective, these results also suggest situations where an introduced predator or the natural enemies of a vector may slow the rate of spread of an emerging vector-borne pathogen.

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

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    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.

  3. Rodent foraging is affected by indirect, but not by direct, cues of predation risk.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Orrock, John, L.; Danielson, Brent, J.; Brinkerhoff, R., Jory

    2004-01-01

    Behavioral Ecology Vol. 15 No. 3: 433 - 437 We used foraging trays to determine whether old field mice, Peromyscus polionotus , altered foraging in response to direct cues of predation risk (urine of native and nonnative predators) and indirect cues of predation risk (foraging microhabitat, precipitation, and moon illumination). The proportion of seeds remaining in each tray (a measure of the giving-up density [GUD]) was used to measure risk perceived by mice. Mice did not alter their GUD when presented with cues of native predators (bobcats, Lynx r ufus , and red foxes, Vulpes vulpes), recently introduced predators (coyotes, Canis latrans ), nonnative predators (ocelots, Leopardus pardalis ), a native herbivore (white-tailed deer, Odocoileus virginianus), or a water control. Rather, GUD was related to microhabitat: rodents removed more seeds from foraging trays sheltered beneath vegetative cover compared with exposed trays outside of cover. Rodents also removed more seeds during nights with precipitation and when moon illumination was low. Our results suggest that P. polionotus used indirect cues rather than direct cues to assess risk of vertebrate predation. Indirect cues may be more reliable than are direct scent cues for estimating risk from multiple vertebrate predators that present the most risk in open environments.

  4. Fishing top predators indirectly affects condition and reproduction in a reef-fish community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walsh, S M; Hamilton, S L; Ruttenberg, B I; Donovan, M K; Sandin, S A

    2012-03-01

    To examine the indirect effects of fishing on energy allocation in non-target prey species, condition and reproductive potential were measured for five representative species (two-spot red snapper Lutjanus bohar, arc-eye hawkfish Paracirrhites arcatus, blackbar devil Plectroglyphidodon dickii, bicolour chromis Chromis margaritifer and whitecheek surgeonfish Acanthurus nigricans) from three reef-fish communities with different levels of fishing and predator abundance in the northern Line Islands, central Pacific Ocean. Predator abundance differed by five to seven-fold among islands, and despite no clear differences in prey abundance, differences in prey condition and reproductive potential among islands were found. Body condition (mean body mass adjusted for length) was consistently lower at sites with higher predator abundance for three of the four prey species. Mean liver mass (adjusted for total body mass), an indicator of energy reserves, was also lower at sites with higher predator abundance for three of the prey species and the predator. Trends in reproductive potential were less clear. Mean gonad mass (adjusted for total body mass) was high where predator abundance was high for only one of the three species in which it was measured. Evidence of consistently low prey body condition and energy reserves in a diverse suite of species at reefs with high predator abundance suggests that fishing may indirectly affect non-target prey-fish populations through changes in predation and predation risk. © 2012 The Authors. Journal of Fish Biology © 2012 The Fisheries Society of the British Isles.

  5. Behaviourally mediated indirect effects : interference competition increases predation mortality in foraging redshanks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Minderman, J; Lind, J; Cresswell, W

    The effect of competition for a limiting resource on the population dynamics of competitors is usually assumed to operate directly through starvation, yet may also affect survival indirectly through behaviourally mediated effects that affect risk of predation. Thus, competition can affect more than

  6. Indirect effects of predators control herbivore richness and abundance in a benthic eelgrass (Zostera marina) mesograzer community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amundrud, Sarah L; Srivastava, Diane S; O'Connor, Mary I

    2015-07-01

    Herbivore communities can be sensitive to changes in predator pressure (top-down effects) and resource availability (bottom-up effects) in a wide range of systems. However, it remains unclear whether such top-down and bottom-up effects reflect direct impacts of predators and/or resources on herbivores, or are indirect, reflecting altered interactions among herbivore species. We quantified direct and indirect effects of bottom-up and top-down processes on an eelgrass (Zostera marina) herbivore assemblage. In a field experiment, we factorially manipulated water column nutrients (with Osmocote(™) slow-release fertilizer) and predation pressure (with predator exclusion cages) and measured the effects on herbivore abundance, richness and beta diversity. We examined likely mechanisms of community responses by statistically exploring the response of individual herbivore species to trophic manipulations. Predators increased herbivore richness and total abundance, in both cases through indirect shifts in community composition. Increases in richness occurred through predator suppression of common gammarid amphipod species (Monocorophium acherusicum and Photis brevipes), permitting the inclusion of rarer gammarid species (Aoroides columbiae and Pontogeneia rostrata). Increased total herbivore abundance reflected increased abundance of a caprellid amphipod species (Caprella sp.), concurrent with declines in the abundance of other common species. Furthermore, predators decreased beta diversity by decreasing variability in Caprella sp. abundance among habitat patches. Osmocote(™) fertilization increased nutrient concentrations locally, but nutrients dissipated to background levels within 3 m of the fertilizer. Nutrient addition weakly affected the herbivore assemblage, not affecting richness and increasing total abundance by increasing one herbivore species (Caprella sp.). Nutrient addition did not affect beta diversity. We demonstrated that assemblage-level effects of

  7. Human-caused Disturbance Stimuli as a Form of Predation Risk

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    Alejandro Frid

    2002-06-01

    Full Text Available A growing number of studies quantify the impact of nonlethal human disturbance on the behavior and reproductive success of animals. Athough many are well designed and analytically sophisticated, most lack a theoretical framework for making predictions and for understanding why particular responses occur. Behavioral ecologists have recently begun to fill this theoretical vacuum by applying economic models of antipredator behavior to disturbance studies. In this emerging paradigm, predation and nonlethal disturbance stimuli create similar trade-offs between avoiding perceived risk and other fitness-enhancing activities, such as feeding, parental care, or mating. A vast literature supports the hypothesis that antipredator behavior has a cost to other activities, and that this trade-off is optimized when investment in antipredator behavior tracks short-term changes in predation risk. Prey have evolved antipredator responses to generalized threatening stimuli, such as loud noises and rapidly approaching objects. Thus, when encountering disturbance stimuli ranging from the dramatic, low-flying helicopter to the quiet wildlife photographer, animal responses are likely to follow the same economic principles used by prey encountering predators. Some authors have argued that, similar to predation risk, disturbance stimuli can indirectly affect fitness and population dynamics via the energetic and lost opportunity costs of risk avoidance. We elaborate on this argument by discussing why, from an evolutionary perspective, disturbance stimuli should be analogous to predation risk. We then consider disturbance effects on the behavior of individuals - vigilance, fleeing, habitat selection, mating displays, and parental investment - as well as indirect effects on populations and communities. A wider application of predation risk theory to disturbance studies should increase the generality of predictions and make mitigation more effective without over

  8. Dynamics and Biocontrol: The Indirect Effects of a Predator Population on a Host-Vector Disease Model

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    Fengyan Zhou

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available A model of the interactions among a host population, an insect-vector population, which transmits virus from hosts to hosts, and a vector predator population is proposed based on virus-host, host-vector, and prey (vector-enemy theories. The model is investigated to explore the indirect effect of natural enemies on host-virus dynamics by reducing the vector densities, which shows the basic reproduction numbers R01 (without predators and R02 (with predators that provide threshold conditions on determining the uniform persistence and extinction of the disease in a host population. When the model is absent from predator, the disease is persistent if R01>1; in such a case, by introducing predators of a vector, then the insect-transmitted disease will be controlled if R02<1. From the point of biological control, these results show that an additional predator population of the vector may suppress the spread of vector-borne diseases. In addition, there exist limit cycles with persistence of the disease or without disease in presence of predators. Finally, numerical simulations are conducted to support analytical results.

  9. Development of a New Technique to Assess Susceptibility to Predation Resulting from Sublethal Stresses (Indirect Mortality)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cada, G.F.

    2003-08-25

    Fish that pass through a hydroelectric turbine may not be killed directly, but may nonetheless experience sublethal stresses that will increase their susceptibility to predators (indirect mortality). There is a need to develop reliable tests for indirect mortality so that the full consequences of passage through turbines (and other routes around a hydroelectric dam) can be assessed. We evaluated a new technique for assessing indirect mortality, based on a behavioral response to a startling stimulus (akin to perceiving an approaching predator). We compare this technique to the standard predator preference test. The behavioral response is a rapid movement commonly referred to as a startle response, escape response, or C-shape, based on the characteristic body position assumed by the fish. When viewed from above, a startled fish bends into a C-shape, then springs back and swims away in a direction different from its original orientation. This predator avoidance (escape) behavior can be compromised by sublethal stresses that temporarily stun or disorient the fish. We subjected striped shiners and fathead minnows to varying intensities of either turbulence (10-, 20- or 30-min) or 2-min exposures to a fish anesthetic (100 or 200 mg/L of tricaine methanesulfonate), and evaluated their subsequent behavior. Individual fish were given a startle stimulus and filmed with a high-speed video camera. Each fish was startled and filmed twice before being stressed, and then at 1-, 5-, 15-, and 30-min post-exposure. The resulting image files were analyzed for a variety of behavioral measures including: presence of a response, time to first reaction, duration of reaction, time to formation of maximum C-shape, time to completion of C-shape, and completeness of C-shape. The most immediate measure of potential changes in fish behavior was whether stressed fish exhibited a startle response. For striped shiners, the number of fish not responding to the stimulus was significantly different

  10. Indirect manifestation of cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo sinensis (L. predation on pond fish stock

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    J. Kortan

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available The damage to fisheries caused by cormorant predation pressure consists of losses due to direct predation and subsequent indirect losses elicited by cormorant feeding activities resulting in fish wounding and stress. Healed wounds reduce the commercial value of afflicted fish and stress may impact fish body and health condition. Fulton´s condition coefficient (FCC was calculated for wounded and healthy two-year old carp originating from five South Moravian (Czech Republic fishponds. Significant (P = 0.0011 differences in FCC (mean ± s.d., were found between non-wounded (1.48 ± 0.11, n = 19 and wounded mirror common carp, Cyprinus carpio (1.33 ± 0.14, n = 19. However no differences (P > 0.05 were recorded in scaly common carp between non-wounded (FCC 1.41 ± 0.25, n = 33 and wounded (FCC 1.46 ± 0.47, n = 33 fish of the same age and size category. A computer assisted image analysis was applied to describe the extent of such injuries. In the case of two-year old mirror, scaly and bighead carp (Aristichthys nobilis, signs of serious injuries (necroses were recorded on 1.93, 0.89 and 1.61% of body surface, respectively. Fish with deep wounds and scars, often accompanied with progressive necroses, were subject to parasitological examination. The percentage of wounded fish from total fish harvested was evaluated as ranging between < 1 and 47.4% in five ponds under study.

  11. Stress triangle: do introduced predators exert indirect costs on native predators and prey?

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    Jennifer R Anson

    Full Text Available Non-consumptive effects of predators on each other and on prey populations often exceed the effects of direct predation. These effects can arise from fear responses elevating glucocorticoid (GC hormone levels (predator stress hypothesis or from increased vigilance that reduces foraging efficiency and body condition (predator sensitive foraging hypothesis; both responses can lead to immunosuppression and increased parasite loads. Non-consumptive effects of invasive predators have been little studied, even though their direct impacts on local species are usually greater than those of their native counterparts. To address this issue, we explored the non-consumptive effects of the invasive red fox Vulpes vulpes on two native species in eastern Australia: a reptilian predator, the lace monitor Varanus varius and a marsupial, the ringtail possum Pseudocheirus peregrinus. In particular, we tested predictions derived from the above two hypotheses by comparing the basal glucocorticoid levels, foraging behaviour, body condition and haemoparasite loads of both native species in areas with and without fox suppression. Lace monitors showed no GC response or differences in haemoparasite loads but were more likely to trade safety for higher food rewards, and had higher body condition, in areas of fox suppression than in areas where foxes remained abundant. In contrast, ringtails showed no physiological or behavioural differences between fox-suppressed and control areas. Predator sensitive foraging is a non-consumptive cost for lace monitors in the presence of the fox and most likely represents a response to competition. The ringtail's lack of response to the fox potentially represents complete naiveté or strong and rapid selection to the invasive predator. We suggest evolutionary responses are often overlooked in interactions between native and introduced species, but must be incorporated if we are to understand the suite of forces that shape community

  12. Predator diversity effects in an exotic freshwater food web.

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    Naddafi, Rahmat; Rudstam, Lars G

    2013-01-01

    Cascading trophic interactions are often defined as the indirect effects of a predator on primary producers through the effect of the predator on herbivores. These effects can be both direct through removal of herbivores [density-mediated indirect interactions (DMIIs)] or indirect through changes in the behavior of the herbivores [trait-mediated indirect interactions (TMIIs)]. How the relative importance of these two indirect interactions varies with predator diversity remains poorly understood. We tested the effect of predator diversity on both TMIIs and DMIIs on phytoplankton using two competitive invasive dreissenid mussel species (zebra mussel and quagga mussel) as the herbivores and combinations of one, two or all three species of the predators pumpkinseed sunfish, round goby, and rusty crayfish. Predators had either direct access to mussels and induced both TMII and DMII, or no direct access and induced only TMII through the presence of risk cues. In both sets of treatments, the predators induced a trophic cascade which resulted in more phytoplankton remaining with predators present than with only mussels present. The trophic cascade was weaker in three-predator and two-predator treatments than in one-predator treatments when predators had direct access to dreissenids (DMIIs and TMIIs). Crayfish had higher cascading effects on phytoplankton than both pumpkinseed and round goby. Increased predator diversity decreased the strength of DMIIs but had no effect on the strength of TMIIs. The strength of TMIIs was higher with zebra than quagga mussels. Our study suggests that inter-specific interference among predators in multi-species treatments weakens the consumptive cascading effects of predation on lower trophic levels whereas the importance of predator diversity on trait mediated effects depends on predator identity.

  13. Predator diversity effects in an exotic freshwater food web.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rahmat Naddafi

    Full Text Available Cascading trophic interactions are often defined as the indirect effects of a predator on primary producers through the effect of the predator on herbivores. These effects can be both direct through removal of herbivores [density-mediated indirect interactions (DMIIs] or indirect through changes in the behavior of the herbivores [trait-mediated indirect interactions (TMIIs]. How the relative importance of these two indirect interactions varies with predator diversity remains poorly understood. We tested the effect of predator diversity on both TMIIs and DMIIs on phytoplankton using two competitive invasive dreissenid mussel species (zebra mussel and quagga mussel as the herbivores and combinations of one, two or all three species of the predators pumpkinseed sunfish, round goby, and rusty crayfish. Predators had either direct access to mussels and induced both TMII and DMII, or no direct access and induced only TMII through the presence of risk cues. In both sets of treatments, the predators induced a trophic cascade which resulted in more phytoplankton remaining with predators present than with only mussels present. The trophic cascade was weaker in three-predator and two-predator treatments than in one-predator treatments when predators had direct access to dreissenids (DMIIs and TMIIs. Crayfish had higher cascading effects on phytoplankton than both pumpkinseed and round goby. Increased predator diversity decreased the strength of DMIIs but had no effect on the strength of TMIIs. The strength of TMIIs was higher with zebra than quagga mussels. Our study suggests that inter-specific interference among predators in multi-species treatments weakens the consumptive cascading effects of predation on lower trophic levels whereas the importance of predator diversity on trait mediated effects depends on predator identity.

  14. Predicting population level risk effects of predation from the responses of individuals

    OpenAIRE

    Macleod, Colin D.; Macleod, Ross; Learmonth, Jennifer A.; Cresswell, Will; Pierce, G.J.

    2014-01-01

    Fear of predation produces large effects on prey population dynamics through indirect risk effects that can cause even greater impacts than direct predation mortality. As yet, there is no general theoretical framework for predicting when and how these population risk effects will arise in specific prey populations, meaning there is often little consideration given to the key role predator risk effects can play in understanding conservation and wildlife management challenges. Here, we propose ...

  15. Direct and indirect effects of a dense understory on tree seedling recruitment in temperate forests: habitat-mediated predation versus competition

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    Alejandro A. Royo; Walter P. Carson

    2008-01-01

    In forests characterized by a dense woody and herbaceous understory layer, seedling recruitment is often directly suppressed via interspecific competition. Alternatively, these dense layers may indirectly lower tree recruitment by providing a haven for seed and seedling predators that prey on neighboring plant species. To simultaneously...

  16. Direct and indirect effects of different types of microplastics on freshwater prey (Corbicula fluminea) and their predator (Acipenser transmontanus)

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    Parnis, J. Mark; Browne, Mark A.; Serrato, Sebastian; Reiner, Eric J.; Robson, Matthew; Young, Thomas; Diamond, Miriam L.; Teh, Swee J.

    2017-01-01

    We examined whether environmentally relevant concentrations of different types of microplastics, with or without PCBs, directly affect freshwater prey and indirectly affect their predators. Asian clams (Corbicula fluminea) were exposed to environmentally relevant concentrations of polyethylene terephthalate (PET), polyethylene, polyvinylchloride (PVC) or polystyrene with and without polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) for 28 days. Their predators, white sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus), were exposed to clams from each treatment for 28 days. In both species, we examined bioaccumulation of PCBs and effects (i.e., immunohistochemistry, histology, behavior, condition, mortality) across several levels of biological organization. PCBs were not detected in prey or predator, and thus differences in bioaccumulation of PCBs among polymers and biomagnification in predators could not be measured. One of the main objectives of this study was to test the hypothesis that bioaccumulation of PCBs would differ among polymer types. Because we could not answer this question experimentally, a bioaccumulation model was run and predicted that concentrations of PCBs in clams exposed to polyethylene and polystyrene would be greater than PET and PVC. Observed effects, although subtle, seemed to be due to microplastics rather than PCBs alone. For example, histopathology showed tubular dilation in clams exposed to microplastics with PCBs, with only mild effects in clams exposed to PCBs alone. PMID:29108004

  17. Direct and indirect effects of different types of microplastics on freshwater prey (Corbicula fluminea and their predator (Acipenser transmontanus.

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    Chelsea M Rochman

    Full Text Available We examined whether environmentally relevant concentrations of different types of microplastics, with or without PCBs, directly affect freshwater prey and indirectly affect their predators. Asian clams (Corbicula fluminea were exposed to environmentally relevant concentrations of polyethylene terephthalate (PET, polyethylene, polyvinylchloride (PVC or polystyrene with and without polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs for 28 days. Their predators, white sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus, were exposed to clams from each treatment for 28 days. In both species, we examined bioaccumulation of PCBs and effects (i.e., immunohistochemistry, histology, behavior, condition, mortality across several levels of biological organization. PCBs were not detected in prey or predator, and thus differences in bioaccumulation of PCBs among polymers and biomagnification in predators could not be measured. One of the main objectives of this study was to test the hypothesis that bioaccumulation of PCBs would differ among polymer types. Because we could not answer this question experimentally, a bioaccumulation model was run and predicted that concentrations of PCBs in clams exposed to polyethylene and polystyrene would be greater than PET and PVC. Observed effects, although subtle, seemed to be due to microplastics rather than PCBs alone. For example, histopathology showed tubular dilation in clams exposed to microplastics with PCBs, with only mild effects in clams exposed to PCBs alone.

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

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    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.

  19. Disease and predation: sorting out causes of a bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis decline.

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    Joshua B Smith

    Full Text Available Estimating survival and documenting causes and timing of mortality events in neonate bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis improves understanding of population ecology and factors influencing recruitment. During 2010-2012, we captured and radiocollared 74 neonates in the Black Hills, South Dakota, of which 95% (70 died before 52 weeks of age. Pneumonia (36% was the leading cause of mortality followed by predation (30%. We used known fate analysis in Program MARK to estimate weekly survival rates and investigate the influence of intrinsic variables on 52-week survival. Model {S1 wk, 2-8 wks, >8 wks} had the lowest AIC c (Akaike's Information Criterion corrected for small sample size value, indicating that age (3-stage age-interval: 1 week, 2-8 weeks, and >8 weeks best explained survival. Weekly survival estimates for 1 week, 2-8 weeks, and >8 weeks were 0.81 (95% CI = 0.70-0.88, 0.86 (95% CI = 0.81-0.90, and 0.94 (95% CI = 0.91-0.96, respectively. Overall probability of surviving 52 weeks was 0.02 (95% CI = 0.01-0.07. Of 70 documented mortalities, 21% occurred during the first week, 55% during weeks 2-8, and 23% occurred >8 weeks of age. We found pneumonia and predation were temporally heterogeneous with lambs most susceptible to predation during the first 2-3 weeks of life, while the greatest risk from pneumonia occurred from weeks 4-8. Our results indicated pneumonia was the major factor limiting recruitment followed by predation. Mortality from predation may have been partly compensatory to pneumonia and its effects were less pronounced as alternative prey became available. Given the high rates of pneumonia-caused mortality we observed, and the apparent lack of pneumonia-causing pathogens in bighorn populations in the western Black Hills, management activities should be geared towards eliminating contact between diseased and healthy populations.

  20. Disease and predation: Sorting out causes of a bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis) decline

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    Smith, Joshua B.; Jenks, Jonathan A.; Grovenburg, Troy W.; Klaver, Robert W.

    2014-01-01

    Estimating survival and documenting causes and timing of mortality events in neonate bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis) improves understanding of population ecology and factors influencing recruitment. During 2010–2012, we captured and radiocollared 74 neonates in the Black Hills, South Dakota, of which 95% (70) died before 52 weeks of age. Pneumonia (36%) was the leading cause of mortality followed by predation (30%). We used known fate analysis in Program MARK to estimate weekly survival rates and investigate the influence of intrinsic variables on 52-week survival. Model {S1 wk, 2–8 wks, >8 wks} had the lowest AICc (Akaike’s Information Criterion corrected for small sample size) value, indicating that age (3-stage age-interval: 1 week, 2–8 weeks, and >8 weeks) best explained survival. Weekly survival estimates for 1 week, 2–8 weeks, and >8 weeks were 0.81 (95% CI = 0.70–0.88), 0.86 (95% CI = 0.81–0.90), and 0.94 (95% CI = 0.91–0.96), respectively. Overall probability of surviving 52 weeks was 0.02 (95% CI = 0.01–0.07). Of 70 documented mortalities, 21% occurred during the first week, 55% during weeks 2–8, and 23% occurred >8 weeks of age. We found pneumonia and predation were temporally heterogeneous with lambs most susceptible to predation during the first 2–3 weeks of life, while the greatest risk from pneumonia occurred from weeks 4–8. Our results indicated pneumonia was the major factor limiting recruitment followed by predation. Mortality from predation may have been partly compensatory to pneumonia and its effects were less pronounced as alternative prey became available. Given the high rates of pneumonia-caused mortality we observed, and the apparent lack of pneumonia-causing pathogens in bighorn populations in the western Black Hills, management activities should be geared towards eliminating contact between diseased and healthy populations.

  1. Foraging trade-offs along a predator-permanence gradient in subalpine wetlands

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    Wissinger, S.A.; Whiteman, H.H.; Sparks, G.B.; Rouse, G.L.; Brown, W.S.

    1999-01-01

    We conducted a series of field and laboratory experiments to determine the direct and indirect effects of a top predator, the tiger salamander (Ambystoma tigrinum nebulosum), on larvae of two species of limnephilid caddisflies (Limnephilus externus and Asynarchus nigriculus) in subalpine wetlands in central Colorado. Asynarchus larvae predominate in temporary wetlands and are aggressive intraguild predators on Limnephilus larvae, which only predominate in permanent basins with salamanders. We first conducted a field experiment in mesocosms (cattle tanks) to quantify the predatory effects of different life stages of salamanders on the two caddisfly species. Two life stages of the salamanders (larvae and paedomorphs) preferentially preyed on Asynarchus relative to Limnephilus. Subsequent laboratory experiments revealed that high Asynarchus activity rates and relatively ineffective antipredatory behaviors led to higher salamander detection and attack rates compared to Limnephilus. In a second field experiment (full factorial for presence and absence of each of the three species), we found that salamander predation on Asynarchus had an indirect positive effect on Limnephilus: survival was higher in the presence of salamanders + Asynarchus than with just Asynarchus. In the laboratory we compared the predatory effects of salamanders with and without their mouths sewn shut and found the observed indirect positive effect on Limnephilus survival to be mainly the result of reduced numbers of Asynarchus rather than salamander-induced changes in Asynarchus behavior. We argue that indirect effects of predator-predator interactions on shared prey will be mainly density-mediated and not trait-mediated when one of the predators (in this case, Asynarchus) is under strong selection for rapid growth and therefore does not modify foraging behaviors in response to the other predator. The reciprocal dominance of Limnephilus and Asynarchus in habitats with and without salamanders

  2. Bird's nesting success and eggs predation within Arusa National ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Identification of predators was obtained indirectly through punched signs left by predators on artificial and true eggs. Observation was done daily and data were analyzed both qualitatively and quantitatively. The study showed no significant difference in predation effect on eggs in glade versus glade edge X2 = 3.08, Df = 1, ...

  3. A quantification of predation rates, indirect positive effects on plants, and foraging variation of the giant tropical ant, Paraponera clavata

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    Lee A. Dyer

    2002-09-01

    Full Text Available While a clear consensus is emerging that predators can play a major role in shaping terrestrial communities, basic natural history observations and simple quantifications of predation rates in complex terrestrial systems are lacking. The potential indirect effect of a large predatory ant, Paraponera clavata Fabricius (Formicidae: Ponerinae, on herbivores was determined on rainforest trees at La Selva Biological Station in Costa Rica and Barro Colorado Island in Panama. Prey and other food brought back to nests by 75 colonies of P. clavata were quantified, taking into account temporal, seasonal, and microhabitat variation for both foraging activity and composition of foraging booty. The dispersion and density of ant colonies and combined density with the mean amounts of prey retrieval were used to calculate rates of predation per hectare in the two forests. In addition, herbivory was measured on trees containing P. clavata and on trees where the ants were not foraging. Colonies at La Selva brought back significantly more nectar plus prey than those at Barro Colorado Island, but foraging patterns were similar in the two forests. At both forests, the ants were more active at night, and there was no significant seasonal or colonial variation in consumption of nectar, composition of foraging booty, and overall activity of the colonies. At La Selva, trees containing P. clavata colonies had the same levels of folivory as nearest neighbor trees without P. clavata but had significantly lower folivory than randomly selected trees. Predation by this ant was high in both forests, despite its omnivorous diet. This insect predator is part of potentially important top-down controls in these wet and moist forests.

  4. Evidence of leopard predation on bonobos (Pan paniscus).

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    D'Amour, Danielle E; Hohmann, Gottfried; Fruth, Barbara

    2006-01-01

    Current models of social organization assume that predation is one of the major forces that promotes group living in diurnal primates. As large body size renders some protection against predators, gregariousness of great apes and other large primate species is usually related to other parameters. The low frequency of observed cases of nonhuman predation on great apes seems to support this assumption. However, recent efforts to study potential predator species have increasingly accumulated direct and indirect evidence of predation by leopards (Panthera pardus) on chimpanzees and gorillas. The following report provides the first evidence of predation by a leopard on bonobos (Pan paniscus). Copyright 2006 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  5. Indirect effects of non-lethal predation on bivalve activity and sediment reworking

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Maire, O.; Merchant, J.N.; Bulling, M.; Teal, L.R.; Gremare, A.; Duchene, J.C.; Solan, M.

    2010-01-01

    Deposit-feeders are the dominant bioturbators of aquatic sediments, where they profoundly impact biogeochemical processes, but they are also vulnerable to both lethal and non-lethal predation by a large variety of predators. In this study, we performed a series of experiments to test the effects of

  6. ``Sleeping with the enemy''—predator-induced diapause in a mite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kroon, Annemarie; Veenendaal, René L.; Bruin, Jan; Egas, Martijn; Sabelis, Maurice W.

    2008-12-01

    Diapause in arthropods is a physiological state of dormancy that is generally thought to promote survival during harsh seasons and dispersal, but it may also serve to avoid predation in space and time. Here, we show that predation-related odours induce diapause in female adult spider mites. We argue that this response allows them to move into an area where they are free of enemies, yet forced to survive without food. Spider mites are specialised leaf feeders, but—in late summer—they experience severe predation on leaves. Hence, they face a dilemma: to stay on the leaf and risk being eaten or to move away from the leaf and risk death from starvation and thirst. Female two-spotted spider mites solve this dilemma by dramatically changing their physiology when exposed to predation-associated cues. This allows them to disperse away from leaves and to survive in winter refuges in the bark of trees or in the soil. We conclude that the mere presence of predation-associated cues causes some herbivorous mites to seek refuge, thereby retarding the growth rate of the population as a whole: a trait-mediated indirect effect that may have consequences for the stability of predator prey systems and for ecosystem structure.

  7. Predator-induced changes in metabolism cannot explain the growth/predation risk tradeoff.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ulrich K Steiner

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Defence against predators is usually accompanied by declining rates of growth or development. The classical growth/predation risk tradeoff assumes reduced activity as the cause of these declines. However, in many cases these costs cannot be explained by reduced foraging effort or enhanced allocation to defensive structures under predation risk. Here, we tested for a physiological origin of defence costs by measuring oxygen consumption in tadpoles (Rana temporaria exposed to predation risk over short and long periods of time. The short term reaction was an increase in oxygen consumption, consistent with the "fight-or-flight" response observed in many organisms. The long term reaction showed the opposite pattern: tadpoles reduced oxygen consumption after three weeks exposure to predators, which would act to reduce the growth cost of predator defence. The results point to an instantaneous and reversible stress response to predation risk. This suggests that the tradeoff between avoiding predators and growing rapidly is not caused by changes in metabolic rate, and must be sought in other behavioural or physiological processes.

  8. Seasonal and among-stream variation in predator encounter rates for fish prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bret C. Harvey; Rodney J. Nakamoto

    2013-01-01

    Recognition that predators have indirect effects on prey populations that may exceed their direct consumptive effects highlights the need for a better understanding of spatiotemporal variation in predator–prey interactions. We used photographic monitoring of tethered Rainbow Trout Oncorhynchus mykiss and Cutthroat Trout O. clarkii to quantify predator encounter rates...

  9. The scale-dependent impact of wolf predation risk on resource selection by three sympatric ungulates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kittle, Andrew M; Fryxell, John M; Desy, Glenn E; Hamr, Joe

    2008-08-01

    Resource selection is a fundamental ecological process impacting population dynamics and ecosystem structure. Understanding which factors drive selection is vital for effective species- and landscape-level management. We used resource selection probability functions (RSPFs) to study the influence of two forms of wolf (Canis lupus) predation risk, snow conditions and habitat variables on white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus), elk (Cervus elaphus) and moose (Alces alces) resource selection in central Ontario's mixed forest French River-Burwash ecosystem. Direct predation risk was defined as the frequency of a predator's occurrence across the landscape and indirect predation risk as landscape features associated with a higher risk of predation. Models were developed for two winters, each at two spatial scales, using a combination of GIS-derived and ground-measured data. Ungulate presence was determined from snow track transects in 64 16- and 128 1-km(2) resource units, and direct predation risk from GPS radio collar locations of four adjacent wolf packs. Ungulates did not select resources based on the avoidance of areas of direct predation risk at any scale, and instead exhibited selection patterns that tradeoff predation risk minimization with forage and/or mobility requirements. Elk did not avoid indirect predation risk, while both deer and moose exhibited inconsistent responses to this risk. Direct predation risk was more important to models than indirect predation risk but overall, abiotic topographical factors were most influential. These results indicate that wolf predation risk does not limit ungulate habitat use at the scales investigated and that responses to spatial sources of predation risk are complex, incorporating a variety of anti-predator behaviours. Moose resource selection was influenced less by snow conditions than cover type, particularly selection for dense forest, whereas deer showed the opposite pattern. Temporal and spatial scale

  10. Ecological interactions shape the dynamics of seed predation in Acrocomia aculeata (Arecaceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Anielle C F; Fonseca, Francine S A; Mota, Gleicielle R; Fernandes, Ane K C; Fagundes, Marcílio; Reis-Júnior, Ronaldo; Faria, Maurício L

    2014-01-01

    The complex network of direct and indirect relationships determines not only the species abundances but also the community characteristics such as diversity and stability. In this context, seed predation is a direct interaction that affects the reproductive success of the plant. For Acrocomia aculeata, the seed predation by Pachymerus cardo and Speciomerus revoili in post-dispersal may destroy more than 70% of the propagules and is influenced by the herbivory of the fruits during pre-dispersal. Fruits of plants with a higher level of herbivory during pre-dispersal are less attacked by predators in post-dispersal. We proposed a hypothesis that describes this interaction as an indirect defense mediated by fungi in a multitrophic interaction. As explanations, we proposed the predictions: i) injuries caused by herbivores in the fruits of A. aculeata favor fungal colonization and ii) the colonization of A. acuelata fruit by decomposing fungi reduces the selection of the egg-laying site by predator. For prediction (i), differences in the fungal colonization in fruits with an intact or damaged epicarp were evaluated in fruits exposed in the field. For prediction (ii), we performed fruit observations in the field to determine the number of eggs of P. cardo and/or S. revoili per fruit and the amount of fungal colonization in the fruits. In another experiment, in the laboratory, we use P. cardo females in a triple-choice protocol. Each insect to choose one of the three options: healthy fruits, fruits with fungus, or an empty pot. The proposed hypothesis was corroborated. Fruits with injuries in the epicarp had a higher fungal colonization, and fruits colonized by fungi were less attractive for egg-laying by seed predators. This study emphasizes the importance of exploring the networks of interactions between multitrophic systems to understand the dynamics and maintenance of natural populations.

  11. Ecological Interactions Shape the Dynamics of Seed Predation in Acrocomia aculeata (Arecaceae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Anielle C. F.; Fonseca, Francine S. A.; Mota, Gleicielle R.; Fernandes, Ane K. C.; Fagundes, Marcílio; Reis-Júnior, Ronaldo; Faria, Maurício L.

    2014-01-01

    Background The complex network of direct and indirect relationships determines not only the species abundances but also the community characteristics such as diversity and stability. In this context, seed predation is a direct interaction that affects the reproductive success of the plant. For Acrocomia aculeata, the seed predation by Pachymerus cardo and Speciomerus revoili in post-dispersal may destroy more than 70% of the propagules and is influenced by the herbivory of the fruits during pre-dispersal. Fruits of plants with a higher level of herbivory during pre-dispersal are less attacked by predators in post-dispersal. We proposed a hypothesis that describes this interaction as an indirect defense mediated by fungi in a multitrophic interaction. As explanations, we proposed the predictions: i) injuries caused by herbivores in the fruits of A. aculeata favor fungal colonization and ii) the colonization of A. acuelata fruit by decomposing fungi reduces the selection of the egg-laying site by predator. Methodology/Principal Findings For prediction (i), differences in the fungal colonization in fruits with an intact or damaged epicarp were evaluated in fruits exposed in the field. For prediction (ii), we performed fruit observations in the field to determine the number of eggs of P. cardo and/or S. revoili per fruit and the amount of fungal colonization in the fruits. In another experiment, in the laboratory, we use P. cardo females in a triple-choice protocol. Each insect to choose one of the three options: healthy fruits, fruits with fungus, or an empty pot. The proposed hypothesis was corroborated. Fruits with injuries in the epicarp had a higher fungal colonization, and fruits colonized by fungi were less attractive for egg-laying by seed predators. Conclusion/Significance This study emphasizes the importance of exploring the networks of interactions between multitrophic systems to understand the dynamics and maintenance of natural populations. PMID:24875386

  12. Predator Bounties in Western Canada Cause Animal Suffering and CompromiseWildlife Conservation Efforts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gilbert Proulx

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Although predation bounty programs (rewards offered for capturing or killing an animal ended more than 40 years ago in Canada, they were reintroduced in Alberta in 2007 by hunting, trapping, and farming organizations, municipalities and counties, and in 2009 in Saskatchewan, by municipal and provincial governments and the Saskatchewan Cattlemen’s Association. Bounty hunters use inhumane and non-selective killing methods such as shooting animals in non-vital regions, and killing neck snares and strychnine poisoning, which cause suffering and delayed deaths. They are unselective, and kill many non-target species, some of them at risk. Predator bounty programs have been found to be ineffective by wildlife professionals, and they use killing methods that cause needless suffering and jeopardize wildlife conservation programs. Our analysis therefore indicates that government agencies should not permit the implementation of bounty programs. Accordingly, they must develop conservation programs that will minimize wildlife-human conflicts, prevent the unnecessary and inhumane killing of animals, and ensure the persistence of all wildlife species.

  13. 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.

  14. Predator-induced changes in metabolism cannot explain the growth/predation risk tradeoff

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Steiner, Uli; Van Buskirk, Josh

    2009-01-01

    , consistent with the "fight-or-flight" response observed in many organisms. The long term reaction showed the opposite pattern: tadpoles reduced oxygen consumption after three weeks exposure to predators, which would act to reduce the growth cost of predator defence. The results point to an instantaneous...... and reversible stress response to predation risk. This suggests that the tradeoff between avoiding predators and growing rapidly is not caused by changes in metabolic rate, and must be sought in other behavioural or physiological processes....

  15. Escaping peril: perceived predation risk affects migratory propensity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hulthén, Kaj; Chapman, Ben B.; Nilsson, P. Anders

    2015-01-01

    Although migratory plasticity is increasingly documented, the ecological drivers of plasticity are not well understood. Predation risk can influence migratory dynamics, but whether seasonal migrants can adjust their migratory behaviour according to perceived risk is unknown. We used electronic ta......) affected timing but not propensity showing that elevated risk carried over to alter migratory behaviour in the wild. Our key finding demonstrates predator-driven migratory plasticity, highlighting the powerful role of predation risk for migratory decision-making and dynamics.......Although migratory plasticity is increasingly documented, the ecological drivers of plasticity are not well understood. Predation risk can influence migratory dynamics, but whether seasonal migrants can adjust their migratory behaviour according to perceived risk is unknown. We used electronic tags...... in their lake summer habitat and monitored individual migration to connected streams over an entire season. Individuals exposed to increased perceived direct predation risk (i.e. a live predator) showed a higher migratory propensity but no change in migratory timing, while indirect risk (i.e. roach density...

  16. Conservation implications when the nest predators are known

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ribic, Christine; Thompson, Frank

    2012-01-01

    Conservation and management of passerines has largely focused on habitat manipulation or restoration because the natural communities on which these birds depend have been destroyed and fragmented. However, productivity is another important aspect of avian conservation, and nest predation can be a large source of nesting mortality for passerines. Recent studies using video surveillance to identify nest predators allow researchers to start evaluating what methods could be used to mitigate nest predation to help passerines of conservation concern. From recent studies, we identified latitudinal and habitat-related patterns in the importance of predator groups that depredate passerine nests. We then reviewed how knowledge of specific nest predators can benefit conservation of bird species of concern. Mammals were the dominant predator group in northern grasslands. Snakes were the dominant predator group in southern habitats. Fire ants were only a nest predator in southern latitudes. Differences in the importance of predator species or groups were likely the result of both their geographic patterns of distribution and habitat preferences. Some direct and indirect predator control measures developed for waterfowl management potentially could be used to benefit passerine productivity. We reviewed three examples-cowbirds, snakes in shrublands, and ground squirrels in grasslands-to illustrate how different predator control strategies may be needed in different situations. Mitigation of passerine nest predation will need to be based on knowledge of predator communities to be effective. This requires large samples of predation events with identified predators; video technology is essential for this task.

  17. Multifarious selection through environmental change: acidity and predator-mediated adaptive divergence in the moor frog (Rana arvalis).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Egea-Serrano, Andrés; Hangartner, Sandra; Laurila, Anssi; Räsänen, Katja

    2014-04-07

    Environmental change can simultaneously cause abiotic stress and alter biological communities, yet adaptation of natural populations to co-changing environmental factors is poorly understood. We studied adaptation to acid and predator stress in six moor frog (Rana arvalis) populations along an acidification gradient, where abundance of invertebrate predators increases with increasing acidity of R. arvalis breeding ponds. First, we quantified divergence among the populations in anti-predator traits (behaviour and morphology) at different rearing conditions in the laboratory (factorial combinations of acid or neutral pH and the presence or the absence of a caged predator). Second, we evaluated relative fitness (survival) of the populations by exposing tadpoles from the different rearing conditions to predation by free-ranging dragonfly larvae. We found that morphological defences (relative tail depth) as well as survival of tadpoles under predation increased with increasing pond acidity (under most experimental conditions). Tail depth and larval size mediated survival differences among populations, but the contribution of trait divergence to survival was strongly dependent on prior rearing conditions. Our results indicate that R. arvalis populations are adapted to the elevated predator pressure in acidified ponds and emphasize the importance of multifarious selection via both direct (here: pH) and indirect (here: predators) environmental changes.

  18. Multifarious selection through environmental change: acidity and predator-mediated adaptive divergence in the moor frog (Rana arvalis)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Egea-Serrano, Andrés; Hangartner, Sandra; Laurila, Anssi; Räsänen, Katja

    2014-01-01

    Environmental change can simultaneously cause abiotic stress and alter biological communities, yet adaptation of natural populations to co-changing environmental factors is poorly understood. We studied adaptation to acid and predator stress in six moor frog (Rana arvalis) populations along an acidification gradient, where abundance of invertebrate predators increases with increasing acidity of R. arvalis breeding ponds. First, we quantified divergence among the populations in anti-predator traits (behaviour and morphology) at different rearing conditions in the laboratory (factorial combinations of acid or neutral pH and the presence or the absence of a caged predator). Second, we evaluated relative fitness (survival) of the populations by exposing tadpoles from the different rearing conditions to predation by free-ranging dragonfly larvae. We found that morphological defences (relative tail depth) as well as survival of tadpoles under predation increased with increasing pond acidity (under most experimental conditions). Tail depth and larval size mediated survival differences among populations, but the contribution of trait divergence to survival was strongly dependent on prior rearing conditions. Our results indicate that R. arvalis populations are adapted to the elevated predator pressure in acidified ponds and emphasize the importance of multifarious selection via both direct (here: pH) and indirect (here: predators) environmental changes. PMID:24552840

  19. Alcohol impairs predation risk response and communication in zebrafish.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thiago Acosta Oliveira

    Full Text Available The effects of ethanol exposure on Danio rerio have been studied from the perspectives of developmental biology and behavior. However, little is known about the effects of ethanol on the prey-predator relationship and chemical communication of predation risk. Here, we showed that visual contact with a predator triggers stress axis activation in zebrafish. We also observed a typical stress response in zebrafish receiving water from these conspecifics, indicating that these fish chemically communicate predation risk. Our work is the first to demonstrate how alcohol effects this prey-predator interaction. We showed for the first time that alcohol exposure completely blocks stress axis activation in both fish seeing the predator and in fish that come in indirect contact with a predator by receiving water from these conspecifics. Together with other research results and with the translational relevance of this fish species, our data points to zebrafish as a promising animal model to study human alcoholism.

  20. Interactions among predators and the cascading effects of vertebrate insectivores on arthropod communities and plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mooney, Kailen A; Gruner, Daniel S; Barber, Nicholas A; Van Bael, Sunshine A; Philpott, Stacy M; Greenberg, Russell

    2010-04-20

    Theory on trophic interactions predicts that predators increase plant biomass by feeding on herbivores, an indirect interaction called a trophic cascade. Theory also predicts that predators feeding on predators, or intraguild predation, will weaken trophic cascades. Although past syntheses have confirmed cascading effects of terrestrial arthropod predators, we lack a comprehensive analysis for vertebrate insectivores-which by virtue of their body size and feeding habits are often top predators in these systems-and of how intraguild predation mediates trophic cascade strength. We report here on a meta-analysis of 113 experiments documenting the effects of insectivorous birds, bats, or lizards on predaceous arthropods, herbivorous arthropods, and plants. Although vertebrate insectivores fed as intraguild predators, strongly reducing predaceous arthropods (38%), they nevertheless suppressed herbivores (39%), indirectly reduced plant damage (40%), and increased plant biomass (14%). Furthermore, effects of vertebrate insectivores on predatory and herbivorous arthropods were positively correlated. Effects were strongest on arthropods and plants in communities with abundant predaceous arthropods and strong intraguild predation, but weak in communities depauperate in arthropod predators and intraguild predation. The naturally occurring ratio of arthropod predators relative to herbivores varied tremendously among the studied communities, and the skew to predators increased with site primary productivity and in trees relative to shrubs. Although intraguild predation among arthropod predators has been shown to weaken herbivore suppression, we find this paradigm does not extend to vertebrate insectivores in these communities. Instead, vertebrate intraguild preda-tion is associated with strengthened trophic cascades, and insectivores function as dominant predators in terrestrial plant-arthropod communities.

  1. Migratory herds of wildebeests and zebras indirectly affect calf survival of giraffes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Derek E; Kissui, Bernard M; Kiwango, Yustina A; Bond, Monica L

    2016-12-01

    In long-distance migratory systems, local fluctuations in the predator-prey ratio can exhibit extreme variability within a single year depending upon the seasonal location of migratory species. Such systems offer an opportunity to empirically investigate cyclic population density effects on short-term food web interactions by taking advantage of the large seasonal shifts in migratory prey biomass.We utilized a large-mammal predator-prey savanna food web to evaluate support for hypotheses relating to the indirect effects of "apparent competition" and "apparent mutualism" from migratory ungulate herds on survival of resident megaherbivore calves, mediated by their shared predator. African lions ( Panthera leo ) are generalist predators whose primary, preferred prey are wildebeests ( Connochaetes taurinus ) and zebras ( Equus quagga ), while lion predation on secondary prey such as giraffes ( Giraffa camelopardalis ) may change according to the relative abundance of the primary prey species.We used demographic data from five subpopulations of giraffes in the Tarangire Ecosystem of Tanzania, East Africa, to test hypotheses relating to direct predation and indirect effects of large migratory herds on calf survival of a resident megaherbivore. We examined neonatal survival via apparent reproduction of 860 adult females, and calf survival of 449 giraffe calves, during three precipitation seasons over 3 years, seeking evidence of some effect on neonate and calf survival as a consequence of the movements of large herds of migratory ungulates.We found that local lion predation pressure (lion density divided by primary prey density) was significantly negatively correlated with giraffe neonatal and calf survival probabilities. This supports the apparent mutualism hypothesis that the presence of migratory ungulates reduces lion predation on giraffe calves.Natural predation had a significant effect on giraffe calf and neonate survival, and could significantly affect giraffe

  2. Predation cues rather than resource availability promote cryptic behaviour in a habitat-forming sea urchin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spyksma, Arie J P; Taylor, Richard B; Shears, Nick T

    2017-03-01

    It is well known that predators often influence the foraging behaviour of prey through the so-called "fear effect". However, it is also possible that predators could change prey behaviour indirectly by altering the prey's food supply through a trophic cascade. The predator-sea urchin-kelp trophic cascade is widely assumed to be driven by the removal of sea urchins by predators, but changes in sea urchin behaviour in response to predators or increased food availability could also play an important role. We tested whether increased crevice occupancy by herbivorous sea urchins in the presence of abundant predatory fishes and lobsters is a response to the increased risk of predation, or an indirect response to higher kelp abundances. Inside two New Zealand marine reserves with abundant predators and kelp, individuals of the sea urchin Evechinus chloroticus were rarer and remained cryptic (i.e. found in crevices) to larger sizes than on adjacent fished coasts where predators and kelp are rare. In a mesocosm experiment, cryptic behaviour was induced by simulated predation (the addition of crushed conspecifics), but the addition of food in the form of drift kelp did not induce cryptic behaviour. These findings demonstrate that the 'fear' of predators is more important than food availability in promoting sea urchin cryptic behaviour and suggest that both density- and behaviourally mediated interactions are important in the predator-sea urchin-kelp trophic cascade.

  3. Effects of viruses and predators on prokaryotic community composition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jardillier, Ludwig; Bettarel, Yvan; Richardot, Mathilde; Bardot, Corinne; Amblard, Christian; Sime-Ngando, Télesphore; Debroas, Didier

    2005-11-01

    Dialysis bags were used to examine the impact of predation and viral lysis on prokaryotic community composition (PCC) over a 5-day experiment in the oligomesotrophic Lake Pavin (France). The impact of the different predator communities (protists and metazoans) of prokaryotes was estimated by water fractionation (protists, which also affected PCC, whereas viruses seemed to be essentially responsible for profound changes in PCC via direct and indirect actions.

  4. Hairworm anti-predator strategy: a study of causes and consequences

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ponton, Fleur; Lebarbenchon, Camille; Lefèvre, Thierry

    2006-01-01

    One of the most fascinating anti-predator responses displayed by parasites is that of hairworms (Nematomorpha). Following the ingestion of the insect host by fish or frogs, the parasitic worm is able to actively exit both its host and the gut of the predator. Using as a model the hairworm, Parago...

  5. Rhinoceros beetles suffer male-biased predation by mammalian and avian predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kojima, Wataru; Sugiura, Shinji; Makihara, Hiroshi; Ishikawa, Yukio; Takanashi, Takuma

    2014-03-01

    Male sexually-selected traits often impose an increased risk of predation on their bearers, causing male-biased predation. We investigated whether males of the sap-feeding Japanese rhinoceros beetle Trypoxylus dichotomus were more susceptible to predation than females by comparing the morphology of beetles caught in bait traps with the remains of beetles found on the ground. The males of this species are larger than the females and have a horn on the head. We found that predation pressure was greater for males than for females, and that larger individuals of both sexes were more vulnerable to predation. We identified two predators, the raccoon dog Nyctereutes procyonoides and jungle crow Corvus macrorhynchos, by monitoring sap-site trees with infrared video cameras. Raccoon dogs visited sap-site trees at night, while crows came after daybreak. The highest frequency of visits by both predators was observed in the first half of August, which matches the peak season of T. dichotomus. Raccoon dogs often left bite marks on the remains of prey, whereas crows did not. Bite marks were found on most of the remains collected at two distant localities, which suggested that predation by raccoon dogs is common. Size- and sex-dependent differences in the conspicuousness and active period of T. dichotomus probably explain these biased predation patterns. Our results suggest that having a large horn/body is costly in terms of the increased risk of predation. Predation cost may act as a stabilizing selection pressure against the further exaggeration of male sexual traits.

  6. Indirect causes of severe adverse maternal outcomes: a secondary analysis of the WHO Multicountry Survey on Maternal and Newborn Health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lumbiganon, P; Laopaiboon, M; Intarut, N; Vogel, J P; Souza, J P; Gülmezoglu, A M; Mori, R

    2014-03-01

    To assess the proportion of severe maternal outcomes resulting from indirect causes, and to determine pregnancy outcomes of women with indirect causes. Secondary analysis of the WHO Multicountry Survey on Maternal and Newborn Health. A total of 359 health facilities in 29 countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East. A total of 314 623 pregnant women admitted to the participating facilities. We identified the percentage of women with severe maternal outcomes arising from indirect causes. We evaluated the risk of severe maternal and perinatal outcomes in women with, versus without, underlying indirect causes, using adjusted odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals, by a multilevel, multivariate logistic regression model, accounting for clustering effects within countries and health facilities. Severe maternal outcomes and preterm birth, fetal mortality, early neonatal mortality, perinatal mortality, low birthweight, and neonatal intensive care unit admission. Amongst 314 623 included women, 2822 were reported to suffer from severe maternal outcomes, out of which 20.9% (589/2822; 95% CI 20.1-21.6%) were associated with indirect causes. The most common indirect cause was anaemia (50%). Women with underlying indirect causes showed significantly higher risk of obstetric complications (adjusted odds ratio, aOR, 7.0; 95% CI 6.6-7.4), severe maternal outcomes (aOR 27.9; 95% CI 24.7-31.6), and perinatal mortality (aOR 3.8; 95% CI 3.5-4.1). Indirect causes were responsible for about one-fifth of severe maternal outcomes. Women with underlying indirect causes had significantly increased risks of severe maternal and perinatal outcomes. © 2014 RCOG The World Health Organization retains copyright and all other rights in the manuscript of this article as submitted for publication.

  7. Positive indirect interactions between neighboring plant species via a lizard pollinator.

    OpenAIRE

    Hansen, D M; Kiesbüy, H C; Jones, C G; Müller, C B

    2007-01-01

    In natural communities, species are embedded in networks of direct and indirect interactions. Most studies on indirect interactions have focused on how they affect predator-prey or competitive relationships. However, it is equally likely that indirect interactions play an important structuring role in mutualistic relationships in a natural community. We demonstrate experimentally that on a small spatial scale, dense thickets of endemic Pandanus plants have a strong positive trait-mediated ind...

  8. Fortune favours the bold: a higher predator reduces the impact of a native but not an invasive intermediate predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrios-O'Neill, Daniel; Dick, Jaimie T A; Emmerson, Mark C; Ricciardi, Anthony; MacIsaac, Hugh J; Alexander, Mhairi E; Bovy, Helene C

    2014-05-01

    Emergent multiple predator effects (MPEs) might radically alter predictions of predatory impact that are based solely on the impact of individuals. In the context of biological invasions, determining if and how the individual-level impacts of invasive predators relates to their impacts in multiple-individual situations will inform understanding of how such impacts might propagate through recipient communities. Here, we use functional responses (the relationship between prey consumption rate and prey density) to compare the impacts of the invasive freshwater mysid crustacean Hemimysis anomala with a native counterpart Mysis salemaai when feeding on basal cladoceran prey (i) as individuals, (ii) in conspecific groups and (iii) in conspecific groups in the presence of a higher fish predator, Gasterosteus aculeatus. In the absence of the higher predator, the invader consumed significantly more basal prey than the native, and consumption was additive for both mysid species - that is, group consumption was predictable from individual-level consumption. Invaders and natives were themselves equally susceptible to predation when feeding with the higher fish predator, but an MPE occurred only between the natives and higher predator, where consumption of basal prey was significantly reduced. In contrast, consumption by the invaders and higher predator remained additive. The presence of a higher predator serves to exacerbate the existing difference in individual-level consumption between invasive and native mysids. We attribute the mechanism responsible for the MPE associated with the native to a trait-mediated indirect interaction, and further suggest that the relative indifference to predator threat on the part of the invader contributes to its success and impacts within invaded communities. © 2013 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2013 British Ecological Society.

  9. Intraguild predation reduces redundancy of predator species in multiple predator assemblage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffen, Blaine D; Byers, James E

    2006-07-01

    1. Interference between predator species frequently decreases predation rates, lowering the risk of predation for shared prey. However, such interference can also occur between conspecific predators. 2. Therefore, to understand the importance of predator biodiversity and the degree that predator species can be considered functionally interchangeable, we determined the degree of additivity and redundancy of predators in multiple- and single-species combinations. 3. We show that interference between two invasive species of predatory crabs, Carcinus maenas and Hemigrapsus sanguineus, reduced the risk of predation for shared amphipod prey, and had redundant per capita effects in most multiple- and single-species predator combinations. 4. However, when predator combinations with the potential for intraguild predation were examined, predator interference increased and predator redundancy decreased. 5. Our study indicates that trophic structure is important in determining how the effects of predator species combine and demonstrates the utility of determining the redundancy, as well as the additivity, of multiple predator species.

  10. Predators and predation rates of skylark Alauda arvensis and woodlark Lullula arborea nests in a semi-natural area in the Netherlands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Praus, Libor; Hegemann, Arne; Tieleman, B. Irene; Weidinger, Karel

    2014-01-01

    Predation is a major cause of breeding failure in bird species with open nests. Although many studies have investigated nest predation rates, direct identification of nest predators is sporadic, especially in (semi-)natural habitats. We quantified nest success and identified nest predators in a

  11. 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

  12. Biodiversity effects of the predation gauntlet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stier, Adrian C.; Stallings, Christopher D.; Samhouri, Jameal F.; Albins, Mark A.; Almany, Glenn R.

    2017-06-01

    The ubiquity of trophic downgrading has led to interest in the consequences of mesopredator release on prey communities and ecosystems. This issue is of particular concern for reef-fish communities, where predation is a key process driving ecological and evolutionary dynamics. Here, we synthesize existing experiments that have isolated the effects of mesopredators to quantify the role of predation in driving changes in the abundance and biodiversity of recently settled reef fishes. On average, predators reduced prey abundance through generalist foraging behavior, which, through a statistical sampling artifact, caused a reduction in alpha diversity and an increase in beta diversity. Thus, the synthesized experiments provide evidence that predation reduces overall abundance within prey communities, but—after accounting for sampling effects—does not cause disproportionate effects on biodiversity.

  13. Nest predation and reproductive traits in small passerines: a comparative approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yanes, Miguel; Suárez, Francisco

    Nest predation can be a decisive factor in the evolution of bird reproduction strategies. This paper compares several reproductive traits in small passerines on the Iberian Peninsula (n=31) with the probability of daily nest survival from predation. We consider the phylogenetic relationships between species by means of an analysis according to three models of evolutionary change: Brownian, punctuational and GRAFEN'S arbitrary. In this comparative evolutionary scenario, clutch size, egg volume and incubation period appear not to change in relation to nest predation, while the nestling phase duration is a positively-related parameter to daily nest survival from predation. These results are consistent for all models of evolutionary change. Thus, from the perspective of nest predation, the nestling period is the most important evolutionary parameter in small passerines. A hypothetical influence of nest predation on passerine clutch and egg size should only be regarded as an indirect factor, linked to the relationship between these parameters and the duration of the nestling period.

  14. Cascading effects of predator-detritivore interactions depend on environmental context in a Tibetan alpine meadow.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Xinwei; Griffin, John N; Sun, Shucun

    2014-05-01

    Studies of grazing food webs show that species traits can interact with environmental factors to determine the strength of trophic cascades, but analogous context dependencies in detrital food webs remain poorly understood. In predator-detritivore-plant interaction chains, predators are expected to indirectly suppress plant biomass by reducing the density of plant-facilitating detritivores. However, this outcome can be reversed where above-ground predators drive burrowing detritivores to lower soil levels, strengthening their plant-facilitating effects. Here, we show that these trait-mediated indirect interactions further depend on environmental context in a Tibetan alpine meadow. In our study system, undulating topography generates higher (dry soil) patches interspersed with lower (wet soil) patches. Because the ability of detritivores to form deep burrows is likely to be limited by oxygen availability in low patches (wet soil), we hypothesized that (i) burrowing detritivores would undergo a vertical habitat shift, allowing them to more effectively avoid predation, in high - but not low - patches, and (ii) this shift would transmit positive effects of predators to plants in high patches by improving conditions in the lower soil layer. We tested these hypotheses using complementary field and glasshouse experiments examining whether the cascading effects of above-ground predatory beetles (presence/absence) on the density and behaviour of tunnel-forming detritivorous beetles, soil properties, and plant growth varied with patch type (low/high). Results revealed that predatory beetles did not reduce the density of detritivores in either patch type but had context-dependent trait-mediated effects, increasing the tunnelling depth of detritivores, improving soil conditions and ultimately increasing plant biomass in the high but not low patches. This study adds to an emerging predictive framework linking predators to plants in detritus food webs, demonstrating that these

  15. Adaptive evolution of body size subject to indirect effect in trophic cascade system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xin; Fan, Meng; Hao, Lina

    2017-09-01

    Trophic cascades represent a classic example of indirect effect and are wide-spread in nature. Their ecological impact are well established, but the evolutionary consequences have received even less theoretical attention. We theoretically and numerically investigate the trait (i.e., body size of consumer) evolution in response to indirect effect in a trophic cascade system. By applying the quantitative trait evolutionary theory and the adaptive dynamic theory, we formulate and explore two different types of eco-evolutionary resource-consumer-predator trophic cascade model. First, an eco-evolutionary model incorporating the rapid evolution is formulated to investigate the effect of rapid evolution of the consumer's body size, and to explore the impact of density-mediate indirect effect on the population dynamics and trait dynamics. Next, by employing the adaptive dynamic theory, a long-term evolutionary model of consumer body size is formulated to evaluate the effect of long-term evolution on the population dynamics and the effect of trait-mediate indirect effect. Those models admit rich dynamics that has not been observed yet in empirical studies. It is found that, both in the trait-mediated and density-mediated system, the body size of consumer in predator-consumer-resource interaction (indirect effect) evolves smaller than that in consumer-resource and predator-consumer interaction (direct effect). Moreover, in the density-mediated system, we found that the evolution of consumer body size contributes to avoiding consumer extinction (i.e., evolutionary rescue). The trait-mediate and density-mediate effects may produce opposite evolutionary response. This study suggests that the trophic cascade indirect effect affects consumer evolution, highlights a more comprehensive mechanistic understanding of the intricate interplay between ecological and evolutionary force. The modeling approaches provide avenue for study on indirect effects from an evolutionary perspective

  16. 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

  17. Differential mortality of wintering shorebirds on the Banc d'Arguin, Mauritania, due to predation by large falcons

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van Den Hout, Piet J.; Spaans, Bernard; Piersma, Theunis

    Predators may influence many aspects of the daily life and seasonal movements of their prey. Here we quantify direct, and evaluate indirect effects of predation by three falcon species (Lanner Falcon Falco biarmicus, Barbary Falcon Falco pelegrinoides and Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus) on

  18. The effect of turbidity on recognition and generalization of predators and non-predators in aquatic ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chivers, Douglas P; Al-Batati, Fawaz; Brown, Grant E; Ferrari, Maud C O

    2013-02-01

    Recent anthropogenic activities have caused a considerable change in the turbidity of freshwater and marine ecosystems. Concomitant with such perturbations are changes in community composition. Understanding the mechanisms through which species interactions are influenced by anthropogenic change has come to the forefront of many ecological disciplines. Here, we examine how a change in the availability of visual information influences the behavior of prey fish exposed to potential predators and non-predators. When fathead minnows, Pimephales promelas, were conditioned to recognize predators and non-predators in clear water, they showed a highly sophisticated ability to distinguish predators from non-predators. However, when learning occurred under conditions of increased turbidity, the ability of the prey to learn and generalize recognition of predators and non-predators was severely impaired. Our work highlights that changes at the community level associated with anthropogenic perturbations may be mediated through altered trophic interactions, and highlights the need to closely examine behavioral interactions to understand how species interactions change.

  19. The effect of turbidity on recognition and generalization of predators and non-predators in aquatic ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chivers, Douglas P; Al-Batati, Fawaz; Brown, Grant E; Ferrari, Maud C O

    2013-01-01

    Recent anthropogenic activities have caused a considerable change in the turbidity of freshwater and marine ecosystems. Concomitant with such perturbations are changes in community composition. Understanding the mechanisms through which species interactions are influenced by anthropogenic change has come to the forefront of many ecological disciplines. Here, we examine how a change in the availability of visual information influences the behavior of prey fish exposed to potential predators and non-predators. When fathead minnows, Pimephales promelas, were conditioned to recognize predators and non-predators in clear water, they showed a highly sophisticated ability to distinguish predators from non-predators. However, when learning occurred under conditions of increased turbidity, the ability of the prey to learn and generalize recognition of predators and non-predators was severely impaired. Our work highlights that changes at the community level associated with anthropogenic perturbations may be mediated through altered trophic interactions, and highlights the need to closely examine behavioral interactions to understand how species interactions change. PMID:23467451

  20. Indirect Allee effect, bistability and chaotic oscillations in a predator-prey discrete model of logistic type

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lopez-Ruiz, Ricardo; Fournier-Prunaret, Daniele

    2005-01-01

    A cubic discrete coupled logistic equation is proposed to model the predator-prey problem. The coupling depends on the population size of both species and on a positive constant λ, which could depend on the prey reproduction rate and on the predator hunting strategy. Different dynamical regimes are obtained when λ is modified. For small λ, the species become extinct. For a bigger λ, the preys survive but the predators extinguish. Only when the prey population reaches a critical value then predators can coexist with preys. For increasing λ, a bistable regime appears where the populations apart of being stabilized in fixed quantities can present periodic, quasiperiodic and chaotic oscillations. Finally, bistability is lost and the system settles down in a steady state, or, for the biggest permitted λ, in an invariant curve. We also present the basins for the different regimes. The use of the critical curves lets us determine the influence of the zones with different number of first rank preimages in the bifurcation mechanisms of those basins

  1. Endometrioid endometrial carcinoma indirectly caused by pituitary prolactinoma: a case report.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishino, Kimihiro; Niwa, Yuri; Mizutani, Teruyuki; Shimizu, Ken; Hayashi, Kazumasa; Chaya, Jyunya; Kato, Noriko; Yamamuro, Osamu

    2013-01-01

    We present the case of a 44-year-old nulliparous woman who experienced irregular menstrual cycles for about 10 years and developed both pituitary prolactinoma and endometrioid endometrial carcinoma. In premenopausal women, hyperprolactinemia causes hypogonadism by inhibiting secretion of gonadotropin-releasing hormone and thus suppressing luteinizing hormone levels, which can cause menstrual disorders ranging from amenorrhea, oligomenorrhea and chronic anovulatory cycle to short luteal phase of the menstrual cycle. A chronic anovulatory menstrual cycle is the most common cause of long-term exposure of the endometrium to endogenous estrogen without adequate opposition from progestins, which can lead to endometrioid endometrial carcinoma. In this case, pituitary prolactinoma may have caused the chronic anovulatory cycle and indirectly led to the endometrioid endometrial carcinoma. In patients for whom the cause of irregular menstruation and chronic anovulatory cycle is suspected to be hyperprolactinemia, explorations of both the hypophysis and endometrium are essential.

  2. Endometrioid Endometrial Carcinoma Indirectly Caused by Pituitary Prolactinoma:A Case Report

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kimihiro Nishino

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available We present the case of a 44-year-old nulliparous woman who experienced irregular menstrual cycles for about 10 years and developed both pituitary prolactinoma and endometrioid endometrial carcinoma. In premenopausal women, hyperprolactinemia causes hypogonadism by inhibiting secretion of gonadotropin-releasing hormone and thus suppressing luteinizing hormone levels, which can cause menstrual disorders ranging from amenorrhea, oligomenorrhea and chronic anovulatory cycle to short luteal phase of the menstrual cycle. A chronic anovulatory menstrual cycle is the most common cause of long-term exposure of the endometrium to endogenous estrogen without adequate opposition from progestins, which can lead to endometrioid endometrial carcinoma. In this case, pituitary prolactinoma may have caused the chronic anovulatory cycle and indirectly led to the endometrioid endometrial carcinoma. In patients for whom the cause of irregular menstruation and chronic anovulatory cycle is suspected to be hyperprolactinemia, explorations of both the hypophysis and endometrium are essential.

  3. Changes in the North Sea fish community: evidence of indirect effects of fishing?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Daan, N.; Gislason, Henrik; Pope, J.

    2005-01-01

    , but such changes may simply reflect the cumulative, direct effects of fishing through selective removal of large individuals. If there is resilience in a fish community towards fishing, we may expect increases in specific components, for instance as a consequence of an associated reduction in predation and....... Taking average fishing mortality of assessed commercial species as an index of exploitation rate of the fish community, it appears that fishing effort reached its maximum in the mid-1980s and has declined slightly since. If the observed changes in the community are caused by indirect effects of fishing...

  4. Olfactory systems and neural circuits that modulate predator odor fear

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lorey K. Takahashi

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available When prey animals detect the odor of a predator a constellation of fear-related autonomic, endocrine, and behavioral responses rapidly occur to facilitate survival. How olfactory sensory systems process predator odor and channel that information to specific brain circuits is a fundamental issue that is not clearly understood. However, research in the last 15 years has begun to identify some of the essential features of the sensory detection systems and brain structures that underlie predator odor fear. For instance, the main (MOS and accessory olfactory systems (AOS detect predator odors and different types of predator odors are sensed by specific receptors located in either the MOS or AOS. However, complex predator chemosignals may be processed by both the MOS and AOS, which complicate our understanding of the specific neural circuits connected directly and indirectly from the MOS and AOS to activate the physiological and behavioral components of unconditioned and conditioned fear. Studies indicate that brain structures including the dorsal periaqueductal gray, paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus, and the medial amygdala appear to be broadly involved in predator odor induced autonomic activity and hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal stress hormone secretion. The medial amygdala also plays a key role in predator odor unconditioned fear behavior and retrieval of contextual fear memory associated with prior predator odor experiences. Other neural structures including the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis and the ventral hippocampus appear prominently involve in predator odor fear behavior. The basolateral amygdala, medial hypothalamic nuclei, and medial prefrontal cortex are also activated by some but not all predator odors. Future research that characterizes how distinct predator odors are uniquely processed in olfactory systems and neural circuits will provide significant insights into the differences of how diverse predator odors activate

  5. Olfactory systems and neural circuits that modulate predator odor fear

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takahashi, Lorey K.

    2014-01-01

    When prey animals detect the odor of a predator a constellation of fear-related autonomic, endocrine, and behavioral responses rapidly occur to facilitate survival. How olfactory sensory systems process predator odor and channel that information to specific brain circuits is a fundamental issue that is not clearly understood. However, research in the last 15 years has begun to identify some of the essential features of the sensory detection systems and brain structures that underlie predator odor fear. For instance, the main (MOS) and accessory olfactory systems (AOS) detect predator odors and different types of predator odors are sensed by specific receptors located in either the MOS or AOS. However, complex predator chemosignals may be processed by both the MOS and AOS, which complicate our understanding of the specific neural circuits connected directly and indirectly from the MOS and AOS to activate the physiological and behavioral components of unconditioned and conditioned fear. Studies indicate that brain structures including the dorsal periaqueductal gray (DPAG), paraventricular nucleus (PVN) of the hypothalamus, and the medial amygdala (MeA) appear to be broadly involved in predator odor induced autonomic activity and hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) stress hormone secretion. The MeA also plays a key role in predator odor unconditioned fear behavior and retrieval of contextual fear memory associated with prior predator odor experiences. Other neural structures including the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis and the ventral hippocampus (VHC) appear prominently involved in predator odor fear behavior. The basolateral amygdala (BLA), medial hypothalamic nuclei, and medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) are also activated by some but not all predator odors. Future research that characterizes how distinct predator odors are uniquely processed in olfactory systems and neural circuits will provide significant insights into the differences of how diverse predator

  6. Landscape-moderated bird nest predation in hedges and forest edges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ludwig, Martin; Schlinkert, Hella; Holzschuh, Andrea; Fischer, Christina; Scherber, Christoph; Trnka, Alfréd; Tscharntke, Teja; Batáry, Péter

    2012-11-01

    Landscape-scale agricultural intensification has caused severe declines in biodiversity. Hedges and forest remnants may mitigate biodiversity loss by enhancing landscape heterogeneity and providing habitat to a wide range of species, including birds. However, nest predation, the major cause of reproductive failure of birds, has been shown to be higher in forest edges than in forest interiors. Little is known about how spatial arrangement (configuration) of hedges affects the avian nest predation. We performed an experiment with artificial ground and elevated nests (resembling yellowhammer and whitethroat nests) baited with quail and plasticine eggs. Nests were placed in three habitat types with different degrees of isolation from forests: forest edges, hedges connected to forests and hedges isolated from forests. Nest predation was highest in forest edges, lowest in hedges connected to forests and intermediate in isolated hedges. In the early breeding season, we found similar nest predation on ground and elevated nests, but in the late breeding season nest predation was higher on ground nests than on elevated nests. Small mammals were the main predators of ground nests and appeared to be responsible for the increase in predation from early to late breeding season, whereas the elevated nests were mainly depredated by small birds and small mammals. High predation pressure at forest edges was probably caused by both forest and open-landscape predators. The influence of forest predators may be lower at hedges, leading to lower predation pressure than in forest edges. Higher predation pressure in isolated than connected hedges might be an effect of concentration of predators in these isolated habitats. We conclude that landscape configuration of hedges is important in nest predation, with connected hedges allowing higher survival than isolated hedges and forest edges.

  7. Reduced foraging in the presence of predator cues by the Black Spiny-tailed Iguana, Ctenosaura similis (Sauria: Iguanidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vincent R. Farallo

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available The presence of a predator may have direct and indirect effects on the behavior of the prey. Although altered behavior may help prey avoid predators, it also can have a potential impact on critical activities such as foraging. Predator-prey interactions are routinely studied in laboratory-based experiments owing to theperceived difficulties of conducting such experiments in natural settings. We conducted an experimental study under field conditions in Palo Verde National Park in northwestern Costa Rica to assess behavioral responses of Black Spiny-tailed Iguanas (Ctenosaurasimilis to the presence of predators and predator cues. Free-roaming iguanas were offered mango in designated areas in the presence of a predator (Boa constrictor, a predator cue (B. constrictor feces, and a control (no predator or predator cue. Results indicate that iguanas reduced their foraging efforts in the presence of both a predator and its cue.

  8. Reduced foraging in the presence of predator cues by the Black Spiny-tailed Iguana, Ctenosaura similis (Sauria: Iguanidae)

    OpenAIRE

    Vincent R. Farallo; Mahmood Sasa; Dennis K. Wasko; Michael R. J. Forstner

    2010-01-01

    The presence of a predator may have direct and indirect effects on the behavior of the prey. Although altered behavior may help prey avoid predators, it also can have a potential impact on critical activities such as foraging. Predator-prey interactions are routinely studied in laboratory-based experiments owing to theperceived difficulties of conducting such experiments in natural settings. We conducted an experimental study under field conditions in Palo Verde National Park in northwestern ...

  9. The effects of recruitment to direct predator cues on predator responses in meerkats

    OpenAIRE

    Zottl, M.; Lienert, R.; Clutton-Brock, T.; Millesi, E.; Manser, M B.

    2017-01-01

    Behavioral responses of animals to direct predator cues (DPCs; e.g., urine) are common and may improve their survival. We investigated wild meerkat (Suricata suricatta) responses to DPCs by taking an experimental approach. When meerkats encounter a DPC they often recruit group members by emitting a call type, which causes the group members to interrupt foraging and approach the caller. The aim of this study was to identify the qualities of olfactory predator cues, which affect the strength of...

  10. Nest site selection by Kentish plover suggests a trade-off between nest-crypsis and predator detection strategies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miguel Ángel Gómez-Serrano

    Full Text Available Predation is one of the main causes of adult mortality and breeding failure for ground-nesting birds. Micro-habitat structure around nests plays a critical role in minimizing predation risk. Plovers nest in sites with little vegetation cover to maximize the incubating adult visibility, but many studies suggest a trade-off between nest-crypsis and predator detection strategies. However, this trade-off has not been explored in detail because methods used so far do not allow estimating the visibility with regards to critical factors such as slope or plant permeability to vision. Here, we tested the hypothesis that Kentish plovers select exposed sites according to a predator detection strategy, and the hypothesis that more concealed nests survive longer according to a crypsis strategy. To this end, we obtained an accurate estimation of the incubating adult's field of vision through a custom built inverted periscope. Our results showed that plovers selected nest sites with higher visibility than control points randomly selected with regards to humans and dogs, although nests located in sites with higher vegetation cover survived longer. In addition, the flushing distance (i.e., the distance at which incubating adults leave the nest when they detect a potential predator decreased with vegetation cover. Consequently, the advantages of concealing the nest were limited by the ability to detect predators, thus indirectly supporting the existence of the trade-off between crypsis and predator detection. Finally, human disturbance also constrained nest choice, forcing plovers to move to inland sites that were less suitable because of higher vegetation cover, and modulated flushing behavior, since plovers that were habituated to humans left their nests closer to potential predators. This constraint on the width of suitable breeding habitat is particularly relevant for the conservation of Kentish Plover in sand beaches, especially under the current context of

  11. Linking snake behavior to nest predation in a Midwestern bird community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weatherhead, Patrick J; Carfagno, Gerardo L F; Sperry, Jinelle H; Brawn, Jeffrey D; Robinson, Scott K

    2010-01-01

    Nest predators can adversely affect the viability of songbird populations, and their impact is exacerbated in fragmented habitats. Despite substantial research on this predator-prey interaction, however, almost all of the focus has been on the birds rather than their nest predators, thereby limiting our understanding of the factors that bring predators and nests into contact. We used radiotelemetry to document the activity of two snake species (rat snakes, Elaphe obsoleta; racers, Coluber constrictor) known to prey on nests in Midwestern bird communities and simultaneously monitored 300 songbird nests and tested the hypothesis that predation risk should increase for nests when snakes were more active and in edge habitat preferred by both snake species. Predation risk increased when rat snakes were more active, for all nests combined and for two of the six bird species for which we had sufficient nests to allow separate analyses. This result is consistent with rat snakes being more important nest predators than racers. We found no evidence, however, that nests closer to forest edges were at greater risk. These results are generally consistent with the one previous study that investigated rat snakes and nest predation simultaneously. The seemingly paradoxical failure to find higher predation risk in the snakes' preferred habitat (i.e., edge) might be explained by the snakes using edges at least in part for non-foraging activities. We propose that higher nest predation in fragmented habitats (at least that attributable to snakes) results indirectly from edges promoting larger snake populations, rather than from edges directly increasing the risk of nest predation by snakes. If so, the notion of edges per se functioning as ecological "traps" merits further study.

  12. Fishing for lobsters indirectly increases epidemics in sea urchins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lafferty, Kevin D.

    2004-01-01

    Two ecological paradigms, the trophic cascade and the host-density threshold in disease, interact in the kelp-forest ecosystem to structure the community. To investigate what happens when a trophic cascade pushes a host population over a host-threshold density, I analyzed a 20-year data set of kelp forest communities at 16 sites in the region of the Channel Islands National Park, California, USA. Historically, lobsters, and perhaps other predators, kept urchin populations at low levels and kelp forests developed a community-level trophic cascade. In geographic areas where the main predators on urchins were fished, urchin populations increased to the extent that they overgrazed algae and starvation eventually limited urchin-population growth. Despite the limitation of urchin population size by food availability, urchin densities, at times, well exceeded the host-density threshold for epidemics. An urchin-specific bacterial disease entered the region after 1992 and acted as a density-dependent mortality source. Dense populations were more likely to experience epidemics and suffer higher mortality. Disease did not reduce the urchin population at a site to the density that predators previously did. Therefore, disease did not fully replace predators in the trophic cascade. These results indicate how fishing top predators can indirectly favor disease transmission in prey populations.

  13. Predator confusion is sufficient to evolve swarming behaviour.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olson, Randal S; Hintze, Arend; Dyer, Fred C; Knoester, David B; Adami, Christoph

    2013-08-06

    Swarming behaviours in animals have been extensively studied owing to their implications for the evolution of cooperation, social cognition and predator-prey dynamics. An important goal of these studies is discerning which evolutionary pressures favour the formation of swarms. One hypothesis is that swarms arise because the presence of multiple moving prey in swarms causes confusion for attacking predators, but it remains unclear how important this selective force is. Using an evolutionary model of a predator-prey system, we show that predator confusion provides a sufficient selection pressure to evolve swarming behaviour in prey. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the evolutionary effect of predator confusion on prey could in turn exert pressure on the structure of the predator's visual field, favouring the frontally oriented, high-resolution visual systems commonly observed in predators that feed on swarming animals. Finally, we provide evidence that when prey evolve swarming in response to predator confusion, there is a change in the shape of the functional response curve describing the predator's consumption rate as prey density increases. Thus, we show that a relatively simple perceptual constraint--predator confusion--could have pervasive evolutionary effects on prey behaviour, predator sensory mechanisms and the ecological interactions between predators and prey.

  14. Effects of rodent species, seed species, and predator cues on seed fate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sivy, Kelly J.; Ostoja, Steven M.; Schupp, Eugene W.; Durham, Susan

    2011-07-01

    Seed selection, removal and subsequent management by granivorous animals is thought to be a complex interaction of factors including qualities of the seeds themselves (e.g., seed size, nutritional quality) and features of the local habitat (e.g. perceived predator risk). At the same time, differential seed selection and dispersal is thought to have profound effects on seed fate and potentially vegetation dynamics. In a feeding arena, we tested whether rodent species, seed species, and indirect and direct predation cues influence seed selection and handling behaviors (e.g., scatter hoarding versus larder hoarding) of two heteromyid rodents, Ord's kangaroo rat ( Dipodomys ordii) and the Great Basin pocket mouse ( Perognathus parvus). The indirect cue was shrub cover, a feature of the environment. Direct cues, presented individually, were (1) control, (2) coyote ( Canis latrans) vocalization, (3) coyote scent, (4) red fox ( Vulpes vulpes) scent, or (5) short-eared owl ( Asio flammeus) vocalization. We offered seeds of three sizes: two native grasses, Indian ricegrass ( Achnatherum hymenoides) and bluebunch wheatgrass ( Pseudoroegneria spicata), and the non-native cereal rye ( Secale cereale), each in separate trays. Kangaroo rats preferentially harvested Indian ricegrass while pocket mice predominately harvested Indian ricegrass and cereal rye. Pocket mice were more likely to scatter hoard preferred seeds, whereas kangaroo rats mostly consumed and/or larder hoarded preferred seeds. No predator cue significantly affected seed preferences. However, both species altered seed handling behavior in response to direct predation cues by leaving more seeds available in the seed pool, though they responded to different predator cues. If these results translate to natural dynamics on the landscape, the two rodents are expected to have different impacts on seed survival and plant recruitment via their different seed selection and seed handling behaviors.

  15. The Ecology of Coral Reef Top Predators in the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan J. Dale

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Coral reef habitats in the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument (PMNM are characterized by abundant top-level predators such as sharks and jacks. The predator assemblage is dominated both numerically and in biomass by giant trevally (Caranx ignobilis and Galapagos sharks (Carcharhinus galapagensis. A lower diversity of predatory teleosts, particularly groupers and snappers, distinguishes the PMNM from other remote, unfished atolls in the Pacific. Most coral reef top predators are site attached to a “home” atoll, but move extensively within these atolls. Abundances of the most common sharks and jacks are highest in atoll fore reef habitats. Top predators within the PMNM forage on a diverse range of prey and exert top-down control over shallow-water reef fish assemblages. Ecological models suggest ecosystem processes may be most impacted by top predators through indirect effects of predation. Knowledge gaps are identified to guide future studies of top predators in the PMNM.

  16. 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.

  17. Diet quality in a wild grazer declines under the threat of an ambush predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnier, Florian; Valeix, Marion; Duncan, Patrick; Chamaillé-Jammes, Simon; Barre, Philippe; Loveridge, Andrew J; Macdonald, David W; Fritz, Hervé

    2014-06-22

    Predators influence prey populations not only through predation itself, but also indirectly through prompting changes in prey behaviour. The behavioural adjustments of prey to predation risk may carry nutritional costs, but this has seldom been studied in the wild in large mammals. Here, we studied the effects of an ambush predator, the African lion (Panthera leo), on the diet quality of plains zebras (Equus quagga) in Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe. We combined information on movements of both prey and predators, using GPS data, and measurements of faecal crude protein, an index of diet quality in the prey. Zebras which had been in close proximity to lions had a lower quality diet, showing that adjustments in behaviour when lions are within short distance carry nutritional costs. The ultimate fitness cost will depend on the frequency of predator-prey encounters and on whether bottom-up or top-down forces are more important in the prey population. Our finding is the first attempt to our knowledge to assess nutritionally mediated risk effects in a large mammalian prey species under the threat of an ambush predator, and brings support to the hypothesis that the behavioural effects of predation induce important risk effects on prey populations.

  18. Ocean acidification alters zooplankton communities and increases top-down pressure of a cubozoan predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammill, Edd; Johnson, Ellery; Atwood, Trisha B; Harianto, Januar; Hinchliffe, Charles; Calosi, Piero; Byrne, Maria

    2018-01-01

    The composition of local ecological communities is determined by the members of the regional community that are able to survive the abiotic and biotic conditions of a local ecosystem. Anthropogenic activities since the industrial revolution have increased atmospheric CO 2 concentrations, which have in turn decreased ocean pH and altered carbonate ion concentrations: so called ocean acidification (OA). Single-species experiments have shown how OA can dramatically affect zooplankton development, physiology and skeletal mineralization status, potentially reducing their defensive function and altering their predatory and antipredatory behaviors. This means that increased OA may indirectly alter the biotic conditions by modifying trophic interactions. We investigated how OA affects the impact of a cubozoan predator on their zooplankton prey, predominantly Copepoda, Pleocyemata, Dendrobranchiata, and Amphipoda. Experimental conditions were set at either current (pCO 2 370 μatm) or end-of-the-century OA (pCO 2 1,100 μatm) scenarios, crossed in an orthogonal experimental design with the presence/absence of the cubozoan predator Carybdea rastoni. The combined effects of exposure to OA and predation by C. rastoni caused greater shifts in community structure, and greater reductions in the abundance of key taxa than would be predicted from combining the effect of each stressor in isolation. Specifically, we show that in the combined presence of OA and a cubozoan predator, populations of the most abundant member of the zooplankton community (calanoid copepods) were reduced 27% more than it would be predicted based on the effects of these stressors in isolation, suggesting that OA increases the susceptibility of plankton to predation. Our results indicate that the ecological consequences of OA may be greater than predicted from single-species experiments, and highlight the need to understand future marine global change from a community perspective. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons

  19. Invasive predator tips the balance of symmetrical competition between native coral-reef fishes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kindinger, Tye L

    2018-04-01

    The importance of competition and predation in structuring ecological communities is typically examined separately such that interactions between these processes are seldom understood. By causing large reductions in native prey, invasive predators may modify native species interactions. I conducted a manipulative field experiment in The Bahamas to investigate the possibility that the invasive Pacific red lionfish (Pterois volitans) alters competition between planktivorous fairy and blackcap basslets (Gramma loreto and Gramma melacara, respectively). Competition between these coral-reef fishes is known to have symmetrical effects on the juveniles of both species, whereby the feeding positions under reef ledges and growth rates of these individuals are hindered. Following baseline censuses of local populations of competing basslets, I simultaneously manipulated the abundance of lionfish on entire reefs, and the abundance of basslets in local populations under isolated ledges within each reef, resulting in three treatments: unmanipulated control populations of both basslets, reduced abundance of fairy basslet, and reduced abundance of blackcap basslet. For eight weeks, I measured the change in biomass and feeding position of 2-5 cm size classes of each basslet species and calculated the growth rates of ~2 cm individuals using a standard mark-and-recapture method. Experimental populations were filmed at dusk using automated video cameras to quantify the behavior of lionfish overlapping with basslets. Video playback revealed lionfish hunted across all ledge positions, regardless of which basslet species were present, yet lionfish differentially reduced the biomass of only juvenile (2 cm) fairy basslet. Predation reduced the effects of interspecific competition on juvenile blackcap basslet as evidenced by corresponding shifts in feeding position toward coveted front edges of ledges and increases in growth rates that were comparable to the response of these fish in

  20. Top predators, mesopredators and their prey: interference ecosystems along bioclimatic productivity gradients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elmhagen, B; Ludwig, G; Rushton, S P; Helle, P; Lindén, H

    2010-07-01

    1. The Mesopredator Release Hypothesis (MRH) suggests that top predator suppression of mesopredators is a key ecosystem function with cascading impacts on herbivore prey, but it remains to be shown that this top-down cascade impacts the large-scale structure of ecosystems. 2. The Exploitation Ecosystems Hypothesis (EEH) predicts that regional ecosystem structures are determined by top-down exploitation and bottom-up productivity. In contrast to MRH, EEH assumes that interference among predators has a negligible impact on the structure of ecosystems with three trophic levels. 3. We use the recolonization of a top predator in a three-level boreal ecosystem as a natural experiment to test if large-scale biomass distributions and population trends support MRH. Inspired by EEH, we also test if top-down interference and bottom-up productivity impact regional ecosystem structures. 4. We use data from the Finnish Wildlife Triangle Scheme which has monitored top predator (lynx, Lynx lynx), mesopredator (red fox, Vulpes vulpes) and prey (mountain hare, Lepus timidus) abundance for 17 years in a 200 000 km(2) study area which covers a distinct productivity gradient. 5. Fox biomass was lower than expected from productivity where lynx biomass was high, whilst hare biomass was lower than expected from productivity where fox biomass was high. Hence, where interference controlled fox abundance, lynx had an indirect positive impact on hare abundance as predicted by MRH. The rates of change indicated that lynx expansion gradually suppressed fox biomass. 6. Lynx status caused shifts between ecosystem structures. In the 'interference ecosystem', lynx and hare biomass increased with productivity whilst fox biomass did not. In the 'mesopredator release ecosystem', fox biomass increased with productivity but hare biomass did not. Thus, biomass controlled top-down did not respond to changes in productivity. This fulfils a critical prediction of EEH. 7. We conclude that the cascade

  1. Predator facilitation or interference: a game of vipers and owls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Embar, Keren; Raveh, Ashael; Hoffmann, Ishai; Kotler, Burt P

    2014-04-01

    In predator-prey foraging games, the prey's reaction to one type of predator may either facilitate or hinder the success of another predator. We ask, do different predator species affect each other's patch selection? If the predators facilitate each other, they should prefer to hunt in the same patch; if they interfere, they should prefer to hunt alone. We performed an experiment in a large outdoor vivarium where we presented barn owls (Tyto alba) with a choice of hunting greater Egyptian gerbils (Gerbillus pyramidum) in patches with or without Saharan horned vipers (Cerastes cerastes). Gerbils foraged on feeding trays set under bushes or in the open. We monitored owl location, activity, and hunting attempts, viper activity and ambush site location, and the foraging behavior of the gerbils in bush and open microhabitats. Owls directed more attacks towards patches with vipers, and vipers were more active in the presence of owls. Owls and vipers facilitated each other's hunting through their combined effect on gerbil behavior, especially on full moon nights when vipers are more active. Owls forced gerbils into the bushes where vipers preferred to ambush, while viper presence chased gerbils into the open where they were exposed to owls. Owls and vipers took advantage of their indirect positive effect on each other. In the foraging game context, they improve each other's patch quality and hunting success.

  2. Behavioral adjustments of African herbivores to predation risk by lions: spatiotemporal variations influence habitat use.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valeix, M; Loveridge, A J; Chamaillé-Jammes, S; Davidson, Z; Murindagomo, F; Fritz, H; Macdonald, D W

    2009-01-01

    Predators may influence their prey populations not only through direct lethal effects, but also through indirect behavioral changes. Here, we combined spatiotemporal fine-scale data from GPS radio collars on lions with habitat use information on 11 African herbivores in Hwange National Park (Zimbabwe) to test whether the risk of predation by lions influenced the distribution of herbivores in the landscape. Effects of long-term risk of predation (likelihood of lion presence calculated over four months) and short-term risk of predation (actual presence of lions in the vicinity in the preceding 24 hours) were contrasted. The long-term risk of predation by lions appeared to influence the distributions of all browsers across the landscape, but not of grazers. This result strongly suggests that browsers and grazers, which face different ecological constraints, are influenced at different spatial and temporal scales in the variation of the risk of predation by lions. The results also show that all herbivores tend to use more open habitats preferentially when lions are in their vicinity, probably an effective anti-predator behavior against such an ambush predator. Behaviorally induced effects of lions may therefore contribute significantly to structuring African herbivore communities, and hence possibly their effects on savanna ecosystems.

  3. Predators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Donald D.; McCabe, Thomas R.; Ambrose, Robert E.; Garner, Gerald W.; Weiler, Greg J.; Reynolds, Harry V.; Udevitz, Mark S.; Reed, Dan J.; Griffith, Brad; Douglas, David C.; Reynolds, Patricia E.; Rhode, E.B.

    2002-01-01

    Calving caribou (Rangifer tarandus) of the Central Arctic herd, Alaska, have avoided the infrastructure associated with the complex of petroleum development areas from Prudhoe Bay to Kuparuk (Cameron et al. 1992, Nellemann and Cameron 1998, and Section 4 of this document). Calving females of the Porcupine caribou herd may similarly avoid any oil field roads and pipelines developed in areas traditionally used during the calving and post-calving periods. This may displace the caribou females and calves to areas east and south of the 1002 Area of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.Increased calf mortality could occur if calving caribou are displaced into areas that have a higher density of predators, higher rates of predation, or where a higher proportion of the predators regularly use caribou as a food source (Whitten et al. 1992).Our study assessed predation risks to caribou calving in the 1002 Area versus calving in potential displacement areas. Due to funding constraints, our research focused on grizzly bears (Ursus arctos), with wolves (Camus lupus) and golden eagles (Aquila chrysaetos) receiving only cursory attention. Our research objectives were 1) to compare relative abundance of predators within the 1002 Area with that in adjacent peripheral areas, 2) to determine factors affecting predator abundance on the calving grounds, and 3) to quantify the use of caribou as a food source for predators and the importance of caribou to the productivity of predator populations using the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

  4. Declining soil Crustacea in a World Heritage Site caused by land nemertean.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shinobe, Shotaro; Uchida, Shota; Mori, Hideaki; Okochi, Isamu; Chiba, Satoshi

    2017-09-29

    Invasive non-native species are of great concern throughout the world. Potential severity of the impacts of non-native species is assessed for effective conservation managements. However, such risk assessment is often difficult, and underestimating possible harm can cause substantial issues. Here, we document catastrophic decline of a soil ecosystem in the Ogasawara Islands, a UNESCO World Heritage site, due to predation by non-native land nemertine Geonemertes pelaensis of which harm has been previously unnoticed. This nemertine is widely distributed in tropical regions, and no study has shown that it feeds on arthropods. However, we experimentally confirmed that G. pelaensis predates various arthropod groups. Soil fauna of Ogasawara was originally dominated by isopods and amphipods, but our surveys in the southern parts of Hahajima Island showed that these became extremely scarce in the areas invaded by G. pelaensis. Carnivorous arthropods decreased by indirect effects of its predation. Radical decline of soil arthropods since the 1980s on Chichijima Island was also caused by G. pelaensis and was first recorded in 1981. Thus, the soil ecosystem was already seriously damaged in Ogasawara by the nemertine. The present findings raise an issue and limitation in recognizing threats of non-native species.

  5. Context-dependent planktivory: interacting effects of turbidity and predation risk on adaptive foraging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pangle, Kevin L.; Malinich, Timothy D.; Bunnell, David B.; DeVries, Dennis R.; Ludsin, Stuart A.

    2012-01-01

    By shaping species interactions, adaptive phenotypic plasticity can profoundly influence ecosystems. Predicting such outcomes has proven difficult, however, owing in part to the dependence of plasticity on the environmental context. Of particular relevance are environmental factors that affect sensory performance in organisms in ways that alter the tradeoffs associated with adaptive phenotypic responses. We explored the influence of turbidity, which simultaneously and differentially affects the sensory performance of consumers at multiple trophic levels, on the indirect effect of a top predator (piscivorous fish) on a basal prey resource (zooplankton) that is mediated through changes in the plastic foraging behavior of an intermediate consumer (zooplanktivorous fish). We first generated theoretical predictions of the adaptive foraging response of a zooplanktivore across wide gradients of turbidity and predation risk by a piscivore. Our model predicted that predation risk can change the negative relationship between intermediate consumer foraging and turbidity into a humped-shaped (unimodal) one in which foraging is low in both clear and highly turbid conditions due to foraging-related risk and visual constraints, respectively. Consequently, the positive trait-mediated indirect effect (TMIE) of the top predator on the basal resource is predicted to peak at low turbidity and decline thereafter until it reaches an asymptote of zero at intermediate turbidity levels (when foraging equals that which is predicted when the top predator is absent). We used field observations and a laboratory experiment to test our model predictions. In support, we found humped-shaped relationships between planktivory and turbidity for several zooplanktivorous fishes from diverse freshwater ecosystems with predation risk. Further, our experiment demonstrated that predation risk reduced zooplanktivory by yellow perch (Perca flavescens) at a low turbidity, but had no effect on consumption at

  6. Influence of predator density on nonindependent effects of multiple predator species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffen, Blaine D; Williamson, Tucker

    2008-02-01

    Interactions between multiple predator species are frequent in natural communities and can have important implications for shared prey survival. Predator density may be an important component of these interactions between predator species, as the frequency of interactions between species is largely determined by species density. Here we experimentally examine the importance of predator density for interactions between predator species and subsequent impacts on prey. We show that aggressive interactions between the predatory shore crabs Carcinus maenas and Hemigrapsus sanguineus increased with predator density, yet did not increase as fast as negative interactions between conspecifics. At low density, interactions between conspecific and heterospecific predators had similar inhibitory impacts on predator function, whereas conspecific interference was greater than interference from heterospecifics at high predator density. Thus the impact of conspecific interference at high predator density was sufficient in itself that interactions with a second predator species had no additional impact on per capita predation. Spatial and temporal variability in predator density is a ubiquitous characteristic of natural systems that should be considered in studies of multiple predator species.

  7. Natural enemy-mediated indirect interactions among prey species: potential for enhancing biocontrol services in agroecosystems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chailleux, A.; Mohl, E.K.; Teixeira Alves, M.; Messelink, G.J.; Desneux, N.

    2014-01-01

    Understanding how arthropod pests and their natural enemies interact in complex agroecosystems is essential for pest management programmes. Theory predicts that prey sharing a predator, such as a biological control agent, can indirectly reduce each other's density at equilibrium (apparent

  8. Intratracheal IL-6 protects against lung inflammation in direct, but not indirect, causes of acute lung injury in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhargava, Rhea; Janssen, William; Altmann, Christopher; Andrés-Hernando, Ana; Okamura, Kayo; Vandivier, R William; Ahuja, Nilesh; Faubel, Sarah

    2013-01-01

    Serum and bronchoalveolar fluid IL-6 are increased in patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) and predict prolonged mechanical ventilation and poor outcomes, although the role of intra-alveolar IL-6 in indirect lung injury is unknown. We investigated the role of endogenous and exogenous intra-alveolar IL-6 in AKI-mediated lung injury (indirect lung injury), intraperitoneal (IP) endotoxin administration (indirect lung injury) and, for comparison, intratracheal (IT) endotoxin administration (direct lung injury) with the hypothesis that IL-6 would exert a pro-inflammatory effect in these causes of acute lung inflammation. Bronchoalveolar cytokines (IL-6, CXCL1, TNF-α, IL-1β, and IL-10), BAL fluid neutrophils, lung inflammation (lung cytokines, MPO activity [a biochemical marker of neutrophil infiltration]), and serum cytokines were determined in adult male C57Bl/6 mice with no intervention or 4 hours after ischemic AKI (22 minutes of renal pedicle clamping), IP endotoxin (10 µg), or IT endotoxin (80 µg) with and without intratracheal (IT) IL-6 (25 ng or 200 ng) treatment. Lung inflammation was similar after AKI, IP endotoxin, and IT endotoxin. BAL fluid IL-6 was markedly increased after IT endotoxin, and not increased after AKI or IP endotoxin. Unexpectedly, IT IL-6 exerted an anti-inflammatory effect in healthy mice characterized by reduced BAL fluid cytokines. IT IL-6 also exerted an anti-inflammatory effect in IT endotoxin characterized by reduced BAL fluid cytokines and lung inflammation; IT IL-6 had no effect on lung inflammation in AKI or IP endotoxin. IL-6 exerts an anti-inflammatory effect in direct lung injury from IT endotoxin, yet has no role in the pathogenesis or treatment of indirect lung injury from AKI or IP endotoxin. Since intra-alveolar inflammation is important in the pathogenesis of direct, but not indirect, causes of lung inflammation, IT anti-inflammatory treatments may have a role in direct, but not indirect, causes of ARDS.

  9. Intratracheal IL-6 protects against lung inflammation in direct, but not indirect, causes of acute lung injury in mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rhea Bhargava

    Full Text Available Serum and bronchoalveolar fluid IL-6 are increased in patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS and predict prolonged mechanical ventilation and poor outcomes, although the role of intra-alveolar IL-6 in indirect lung injury is unknown. We investigated the role of endogenous and exogenous intra-alveolar IL-6 in AKI-mediated lung injury (indirect lung injury, intraperitoneal (IP endotoxin administration (indirect lung injury and, for comparison, intratracheal (IT endotoxin administration (direct lung injury with the hypothesis that IL-6 would exert a pro-inflammatory effect in these causes of acute lung inflammation.Bronchoalveolar cytokines (IL-6, CXCL1, TNF-α, IL-1β, and IL-10, BAL fluid neutrophils, lung inflammation (lung cytokines, MPO activity [a biochemical marker of neutrophil infiltration], and serum cytokines were determined in adult male C57Bl/6 mice with no intervention or 4 hours after ischemic AKI (22 minutes of renal pedicle clamping, IP endotoxin (10 µg, or IT endotoxin (80 µg with and without intratracheal (IT IL-6 (25 ng or 200 ng treatment.Lung inflammation was similar after AKI, IP endotoxin, and IT endotoxin. BAL fluid IL-6 was markedly increased after IT endotoxin, and not increased after AKI or IP endotoxin. Unexpectedly, IT IL-6 exerted an anti-inflammatory effect in healthy mice characterized by reduced BAL fluid cytokines. IT IL-6 also exerted an anti-inflammatory effect in IT endotoxin characterized by reduced BAL fluid cytokines and lung inflammation; IT IL-6 had no effect on lung inflammation in AKI or IP endotoxin.IL-6 exerts an anti-inflammatory effect in direct lung injury from IT endotoxin, yet has no role in the pathogenesis or treatment of indirect lung injury from AKI or IP endotoxin. Since intra-alveolar inflammation is important in the pathogenesis of direct, but not indirect, causes of lung inflammation, IT anti-inflammatory treatments may have a role in direct, but not indirect, causes of

  10. Predator-induced demographic shifts in coral reef fish assemblages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruttenberg, B.I.; Hamilton, S.L.; Walsh, S.M.; Donovan, M.K.; Friedlander, A.; DeMartini, E.; Sala, E.; Sandin, S.A.

    2011-01-01

    In recent years, it has become apparent that human impacts have altered community structure in coastal and marine ecosystems worldwide. Of these, fishing is one of the most pervasive, and a growing body of work suggests that fishing can have strong effects on the ecology of target species, especially top predators. However, the effects of removing top predators on lower trophic groups of prey fishes are less clear, particularly in highly diverse and trophically complex coral reef ecosystems. We examined patterns of abundance, size structure, and age-based demography through surveys and collection-based studies of five fish species from a variety of trophic levels at Kiritimati and Palmyra, two nearby atolls in the Northern Line Islands. These islands have similar biogeography and oceanography, and yet Kiritimati has ~10,000 people with extensive local fishing while Palmyra is a US National Wildlife Refuge with no permanent human population, no fishing, and an intact predator fauna. Surveys indicated that top predators were relatively larger and more abundant at unfished Palmyra, while prey functional groups were relatively smaller but showed no clear trends in abundance as would be expected from classic trophic cascades. Through detailed analyses of focal species, we found that size and longevity of a top predator were lower at fished Kiritimati than at unfished Palmyra. Demographic patterns also shifted dramatically for 4 of 5 fish species in lower trophic groups, opposite in direction to the top predator, including decreases in average size and longevity at Palmyra relative to Kiritimati. Overall, these results suggest that fishing may alter community structure in complex and non-intuitive ways, and that indirect demographic effects should be considered more broadly in ecosystem-based management. ?? 2011 Ruttenberg et al.

  11. Predator-induced demographic shifts in coral reef fish assemblages.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin I Ruttenberg

    Full Text Available In recent years, it has become apparent that human impacts have altered community structure in coastal and marine ecosystems worldwide. Of these, fishing is one of the most pervasive, and a growing body of work suggests that fishing can have strong effects on the ecology of target species, especially top predators. However, the effects of removing top predators on lower trophic groups of prey fishes are less clear, particularly in highly diverse and trophically complex coral reef ecosystems. We examined patterns of abundance, size structure, and age-based demography through surveys and collection-based studies of five fish species from a variety of trophic levels at Kiritimati and Palmyra, two nearby atolls in the Northern Line Islands. These islands have similar biogeography and oceanography, and yet Kiritimati has ∼10,000 people with extensive local fishing while Palmyra is a US National Wildlife Refuge with no permanent human population, no fishing, and an intact predator fauna. Surveys indicated that top predators were relatively larger and more abundant at unfished Palmyra, while prey functional groups were relatively smaller but showed no clear trends in abundance as would be expected from classic trophic cascades. Through detailed analyses of focal species, we found that size and longevity of a top predator were lower at fished Kiritimati than at unfished Palmyra. Demographic patterns also shifted dramatically for 4 of 5 fish species in lower trophic groups, opposite in direction to the top predator, including decreases in average size and longevity at Palmyra relative to Kiritimati. Overall, these results suggest that fishing may alter community structure in complex and non-intuitive ways, and that indirect demographic effects should be considered more broadly in ecosystem-based management.

  12. Dynamics of a intraguild predation model with generalist or specialist predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Yun; Wedekin, Lauren

    2013-11-01

    Intraguild predation (IGP) is a combination of competition and predation which is the most basic system in food webs that contains three species where two species that are involved in a predator/prey relationship are also competing for a shared resource or prey. We formulate two intraguild predation (IGP: resource, IG prey and IG predator) models: one has generalist predator while the other one has specialist predator. Both models have Holling-Type I functional response between resource-IG prey and resource-IG predator; Holling-Type III functional response between IG prey and IG predator. We provide sufficient conditions of the persistence and extinction of all possible scenarios for these two models, which give us a complete picture on their global dynamics. In addition, we show that both IGP models can have multiple interior equilibria under certain parameters range. These analytical results indicate that IGP model with generalist predator has "top down" regulation by comparing to IGP model with specialist predator. Our analysis and numerical simulations suggest that: (1) Both IGP models can have multiple attractors with complicated dynamical patterns; (2) Only IGP model with specialist predator can have both boundary attractor and interior attractor, i.e., whether the system has the extinction of one species or the coexistence of three species depending on initial conditions; (3) IGP model with generalist predator is prone to have coexistence of three species.

  13. Breeding phenology of birds: mechanisms underlying seasonal declines in the risk of nest predation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kathi L Borgmann

    Full Text Available Seasonal declines in avian clutch size are well documented, but seasonal variation in other reproductive parameters has received less attention. For example, the probability of complete brood mortality typically explains much of the variation in reproductive success and often varies seasonally, but we know little about the underlying cause of that variation. This oversight is surprising given that nest predation influences many other life-history traits and varies throughout the breeding season in many songbirds. To determine the underlying causes of observed seasonal decreases in risk of nest predation, we modeled nest predation of Dusky Flycatchers (Empidonax oberholseri in northern California as a function of foliage phenology, energetic demand, developmental stage, conspecific nest density, food availability for nest predators, and nest predator abundance. Seasonal variation in the risk of nest predation was not associated with seasonal changes in energetic demand, conspecific nest density, or predator abundance. Instead, seasonal variation in the risk of nest predation was associated with foliage density (early, but not late, in the breeding season and seasonal changes in food available to nest predators. Supplemental food provided to nest predators resulted in a numerical response by nest predators, increasing the risk of nest predation at nests that were near supplemental feeders. Our results suggest that seasonal changes in foliage density and factors associated with changes in food availability for nest predators are important drivers of temporal patterns in risk of avian nest predation.

  14. Breeding phenology of birds: mechanisms underlying seasonal declines in the risk of nest predation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borgmann, Kathi L; Conway, Courtney J; Morrison, Michael L

    2013-01-01

    Seasonal declines in avian clutch size are well documented, but seasonal variation in other reproductive parameters has received less attention. For example, the probability of complete brood mortality typically explains much of the variation in reproductive success and often varies seasonally, but we know little about the underlying cause of that variation. This oversight is surprising given that nest predation influences many other life-history traits and varies throughout the breeding season in many songbirds. To determine the underlying causes of observed seasonal decreases in risk of nest predation, we modeled nest predation of Dusky Flycatchers (Empidonax oberholseri) in northern California as a function of foliage phenology, energetic demand, developmental stage, conspecific nest density, food availability for nest predators, and nest predator abundance. Seasonal variation in the risk of nest predation was not associated with seasonal changes in energetic demand, conspecific nest density, or predator abundance. Instead, seasonal variation in the risk of nest predation was associated with foliage density (early, but not late, in the breeding season) and seasonal changes in food available to nest predators. Supplemental food provided to nest predators resulted in a numerical response by nest predators, increasing the risk of nest predation at nests that were near supplemental feeders. Our results suggest that seasonal changes in foliage density and factors associated with changes in food availability for nest predators are important drivers of temporal patterns in risk of avian nest predation.

  15. Predation risk of artificial ground nests in managed floodplain meadows

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arbeiter, Susanne; Franke, Elisabeth

    2018-01-01

    Nest predation highly determines the reproductive success in birds. In agricultural grasslands, vegetation characteristics and management practices influences the predation risk of ground breeders. Little is known so far on the predation pressure on non-passerine nests in tall swards. Investigations on the interaction of land use with nesting site conditions and the habitat selection of nest predators are crucial to develop effective conservation measures for grassland birds. In this study, we used artificial nests baited with quail and plasticine eggs to identify potential predators of ground nests in floodplain meadows and related predation risk to vegetation structure and grassland management. Mean daily predation rate was 0.01 (±0.012) after an exposure duration of 21 days. 70% of all observed nest predations were caused by mammals (Red Fox and mustelids) and 17.5% by avian predators (corvids). Nest sites close to the meadow edge and those providing low forb cover were faced with a higher daily predation risk. Predation risk also increased later in the season. Land use in the preceding year had a significant effect on predation risk, showing higher predation rates on unmanaged sites than on mown sites. Unused meadows probably attract mammalian predators, because they provide a high abundance of small rodents and a more favourable vegetation structure for foraging, increasing also the risk of incidental nest predations. Although mowing operation is a major threat to ground-nesting birds, our results suggest that an annual removal of vegetation may reduce predation risk in the subsequent year.

  16. Top predators induce the evolutionary diversification of intermediate predator species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zu, Jian; Yuan, Bo; Du, Jianqiang

    2015-12-21

    We analyze the evolutionary branching phenomenon of intermediate predator species in a tritrophic food chain model by using adaptive dynamics theory. Specifically, we consider the adaptive diversification of an intermediate predator species that feeds on a prey species and is fed upon by a top predator species. We assume that the intermediate predator׳s ability to forage on the prey can adaptively improve, but this comes at the cost of decreased defense ability against the top predator. First, we identify the general properties of trade-off relationships that lead to a continuously stable strategy or to evolutionary branching in the intermediate predator species. We find that if there is an accelerating cost near the singular strategy, then that strategy is continuously stable. In contrast, if there is a mildly decelerating cost near the singular strategy, then that strategy may be an evolutionary branching point. Second, we find that after branching has occurred, depending on the specific shape and strength of the trade-off relationship, the intermediate predator species may reach an evolutionarily stable dimorphism or one of the two resultant predator lineages goes extinct. Crown Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Variation in natural plant products and the attraction of bodyguards involved in indirect plant defense

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mumm, R.; Dicke, M.

    2010-01-01

    Plants can respond to feeding or egg deposition by herbivorous arthropods by changing the volatile blend that they emit. These herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPVs) can attract carnivorous natural enemies of the herbivores, such as parasitoids and predators, a phenomenon that is called indirect

  18. Predation, Competition, and Abiotic Disturbance: Population Dynamics of Small Mammals

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yunger, John A. [Northern Illinois U.

    1996-01-01

    Predation and food availability have been implicated in annual non-cyclic fluctuations of vertebrate prey at mid-latitudes. The timing and magnitude of these factors are unclear due to a lack of large-scale field experiments, little attention to interactions, and a failure to closely link vertebrate predators with their prey. From October 1992 to January 1996, small mammal populations were censused on eight 0.6 ha plots at monthly intervals in a 32-ha prairie restoration at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, Illinois. Terrestrial vertebrate predators were excluded after July 1993 from four of the eight plots and canid diets monitored. Both terrestrial and avian vertebrate predators were excluded in March 1994. During 1993 small mammal densities (i.e., Microtus pennsylvanicus, Peromyscus leucopus, and P. maniculatus) were relatively high. Following peak densities in late summer, Microtus numbers were 2-3x greater on exclusion plots relative to controls due to preferential selection of Microtus by canids, as reflected in diets. Following an ice-storm and crash in small mammal numbers (particularly Microtus), vertebrate predator exclusion had no detectable effect on P. leucopus numbers, probably due to an abundance of alternative prey (i.e., Sylvilagus floridanus). Meadow vole numbers began to increase in Fall 1995, and a numerical effect of predator exclusion, similar to that in 1993, was observed. Predator exclusion had no detectable effect on the movements and spatial patterns of Microtus during 1993. There was a significant decrease in home range and a significant increase in home range overlap for £.. leucopus on the predator exclusion plots. The change in spatial behavior may be due to interspecific competition with Microtus resulting from increased densities on exclusion plots. Thus, predators had an indirect effect on .f.. leucopus spatial patterns mediated through M. pennsylvanicus. The role of food limitation was studied using natural and manipulative

  19. Predation, Competition, and Abiotic Disturbance: Population Dynamics of Small Mammals

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yunger, John A.; /Northern Illinois U. /Northern Illinois U.

    1996-01-01

    Predation and food availability have been implicated in annual non-cyclic fluctuations of vertebrate prey at mid-latitudes. The timing and magnitude of these factors are unclear due to a lack of large-scale field experiments, little attention to interactions, and a failure to closely link vertebrate predators with their prey. From October 1992 to January 1996, small mammal populations were censused on eight 0.6 ha plots at monthly intervals in a 32-ha prairie restoration at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, Illinois. Terrestrial vertebrate predators were excluded after July 1993 from four of the eight plots and canid diets monitored. Both terrestrial and avian vertebrate predators were excluded in March 1994. During 1993 small mammal densities (i.e., Microtus Pennsylvanicus, Peromyscus leucopus, and P. maniculatus) were relatively high. Following peak densities in late summer, Microtus numbers wer 2-3x greater on exclusion plots relative to controls due to preferential selection of Microtus by canids, as reflected in dits. Following an ice-storm and crash in small mammal numbers (particularly Microtus), vertebrate predator exclusion had no detectable effect on P. leucopus numbers, probably due to an abundance of alternative prey (i.e., Sylvilagus floridanus). Meadow vole numbers began to increase in Fall 1995, and a numerical effect of predator exclusion, similar to that in 1993, was observed. Predator exclusion had no detectable effect on the movements and spatial patterns of Microtus during 1993. There was a significant decrease in home range and a significant increase in home range overlap for P. leucopus on the predator exclusion plots. The change in spatial behavior may be due to interspecific competition with Microtus resulting from increased densities on exclusion plots. Thus, predators had an indirect effect on P. leucopus spatial patterns mediated through M. Pennsylvanicus. The role of food limitation was studied using natural and manipulative

  20. Developing a predation index and evaluating ways to reduce salmonid losses to predation in the Columbia River basin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nigro, A.A.

    1990-12-01

    We report our results of studies to develop a predation index and evaluate ways to reduce juvenile salmonid losses to predation in the Columbia River Basin. Study objectives of each were: develop an index to estimate predation losses of juvenile salmonids (Oncorhynchus spp) in reservoirs throughout the Columbia River Basin, describe the relationships among predator-caused mortality of juvenile salmonids and physical and biological variables, examine the feasibility of developing bounty, commercial or recreational fisheries on northern squawfish (Ptychocheilus oregonensis) and develop a plan to evaluate the efficacy of predator control fisheries; determine the economic feasibility of developing bounty and commercial fisheries for northern squawfish, assist ODFW with evaluating the economic feasibility of recreational fisheries for northern squawfish and assess the economic feasibility of utilizing northern squawfish, carp (Cyprinus carpio) and suckers (Castostomus spp) in multispecies fisheries; evaluate commercial technology of various fishing methods for harvesting northern squawfish in Columbia River reservoirs and field test the effectiveness of selected harvesting systems, holding facilities and transportation systems; and modify the existing Columbia River Ecosystem Model (CREM) to include processes necessary to evaluate effects of removing northern squawfish on their population size structure and abundance, document the ecological processes, mathematical equations and computer (FORTRAN) programming of the revised version of CREM and conduct systematic analyses of various predator removal scenarios, using revised CREM to generate the simulations. Individual reports are indexed separately

  1. Ocean acidification alters fish populations indirectly through habitat modification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagelkerken, Ivan; Russell, Bayden D.; Gillanders, Bronwyn M.; Connell, Sean D.

    2016-01-01

    Ocean ecosystems are predicted to lose biodiversity and productivity from increasing ocean acidification. Although laboratory experiments reveal negative effects of acidification on the behaviour and performance of species, more comprehensive predictions have been hampered by a lack of in situ studies that incorporate the complexity of interactions between species and their environment. We studied CO2 vents from both Northern and Southern hemispheres, using such natural laboratories to investigate the effect of ocean acidification on plant-animal associations embedded within all their natural complexity. Although we substantiate simple direct effects of reduced predator-avoidance behaviour by fishes, as observed in laboratory experiments, we here show that this negative effect is naturally dampened when fish reside in shelter-rich habitats. Importantly, elevated CO2 drove strong increases in the abundance of some fish species through major habitat shifts, associated increases in resources such as habitat and prey availability, and reduced predator abundances. The indirect effects of acidification via resource and predator alterations may have far-reaching consequences for population abundances, and its study provides a framework for a more comprehensive understanding of increasing CO2 emissions as a driver of ecological change.

  2. Nest Predation Deviates from Nest Predator Abundance in an Ecologically Trapped Bird.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hollander, Franck A; Van Dyck, Hans; San Martin, Gilles; Titeux, Nicolas

    2015-01-01

    In human-modified environments, ecological traps may result from a preference for low-quality habitat where survival or reproductive success is lower than in high-quality habitat. It has often been shown that low reproductive success for birds in preferred habitat types was due to higher nest predator abundance. However, between-habitat differences in nest predation may only weakly correlate with differences in nest predator abundance. An ecological trap is at work in a farmland bird (Lanius collurio) that recently expanded its breeding habitat into open areas in plantation forests. This passerine bird shows a strong preference for forest habitat, but it has a higher nest success in farmland. We tested whether higher abundance of nest predators in the preferred habitat or, alternatively, a decoupling of nest predator abundance and nest predation explained this observed pattern of maladaptive habitat selection. More than 90% of brood failures were attributed to nest predation. Nest predator abundance was more than 50% higher in farmland, but nest predation was 17% higher in forest. Differences between nest predation on actual shrike nests and on artificial nests suggested that parent shrikes may facilitate nest disclosure for predators in forest more than they do in farmland. The level of caution by parent shrikes when visiting their nest during a simulated nest predator intrusion was the same in the two habitats, but nest concealment was considerably lower in forest, which contributes to explaining the higher nest predation in this habitat. We conclude that a decoupling of nest predator abundance and nest predation may create ecological traps in human-modified environments.

  3. Resource-Mediated Indirect Effects of Grassland Management on Arthropod Diversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simons, Nadja K.; Gossner, Martin M.; Lewinsohn, Thomas M.; Boch, Steffen; Lange, Markus; Müller, Jörg; Pašalić, Esther; Socher, Stephanie A.; Türke, Manfred; Fischer, Markus; Weisser, Wolfgang W.

    2014-01-01

    Intensive land use is a driving force for biodiversity decline in many ecosystems. In semi-natural grasslands, land-use activities such as mowing, grazing and fertilization affect the diversity of plants and arthropods, but the combined effects of different drivers and the chain of effects are largely unknown. In this study we used structural equation modelling to analyse how the arthropod communities in managed grasslands respond to land use and whether these responses are mediated through changes in resource diversity or resource quantity (biomass). Plants were considered resources for herbivores which themselves were considered resources for predators. Plant and arthropod (herbivores and predators) communities were sampled on 141 meadows, pastures and mown pastures within three regions in Germany in 2008 and 2009. Increasing land-use intensity generally increased plant biomass and decreased plant diversity, mainly through increasing fertilization. Herbivore diversity decreased together with plant diversity but showed no response to changes in plant biomass. Hence, land-use effects on herbivore diversity were mediated through resource diversity rather than quantity. Land-use effects on predator diversity were mediated by both herbivore diversity (resource diversity) and herbivore quantity (herbivore biomass), but indirect effects through resource quantity were stronger. Our findings highlight the importance of assessing both direct and indirect effects of land-use intensity and mode on different trophic levels. In addition to the overall effects, there were subtle differences between the different regions, pointing to the importance of regional land-use specificities. Our study underlines the commonly observed strong effect of grassland land use on biodiversity. It also highlights that mechanistic approaches help us to understand how different land-use modes affect biodiversity. PMID:25188423

  4. Simulating the indirect effects of power plant entrainment losses on an estuarine ecosystem

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Summers, J.K. (Versar, Inc., Columbia, MD (USA))

    1989-12-01

    Entrainment caused by the operation of the Chalk Point Steam Electric Station has been shown to be a major source of mortality to the early life stages of forage fish populations in the Patuxent River, MD, USA. While direct losses to these populations are important as a source of reduction for population abundance, these losses also represent decreases in estuarine forage supplies and potential reductions in the abundances of estuarine predators. A simple estuarine trophic dynamics model was constructed to determine the magnitude of the potential losses to major estuarine consumers in the Patuxent River ecosystem due to the power plant-related losses of forage fish. Simulations were completed using two sets of feeding assumptions: feeding proportional to forage abundance, and feeding based on dietary preferences. The model demonstrates that striped bass, bluefish, and weakfish could experience significant losses (> 25%) to overall population production levels if they prefer to prey upon bay anchovy and silversides and entrainment losses to these forage populations is {>=} 70% of juvenile recruitment. The model also shows that indirect predator losses would be expected to be low (> 5%) if the majority of their diets consisted of forage other than bay anchovy and silversides. 2 figs., 31 refs., 4 tabs.

  5. The narrow range of perceived predation: a 19 group study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olivier Mesly

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available This paper rests largely on the works of Mesly (1999 to 2012. It argues that the phenomenon of perceived predation as a functional behavioural phenomenon is subjected to certain limits, a finding based on studies performed on 19 different groups spread over a four-year span. It also finds a constant of k = 1.3 which reflects the invariant nature of perceived predation. These findings add to the theory of financial predation which stipulates that financial predators operate below the limits of detection pertaining to their customers (and market regulators. They are experts at minimizing the perception that clients could have that they are after their money, causing them financial harm, by surprise (perceived predation. Understanding the narrow range in which financial predators operate is setting the grounds to offer better protection to investors and to implementing better control and punitive measures.

  6. Relationship between snow depth and gray wolf predation on white-tailed deer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, M.E.; Mech, L.D.

    1986-01-01

    Survival of 203 yearling and adult white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) was monitored for 23,441 deer days from January through April 1975-85 in northeastern Minnesota. Gray wolf (Canis lupus) predation was the primary mortality cause, and from year to year during this period, the mean predation rate ranged from 0.00 to 0.29. The sum of weekly snow depths/month explained 51% of the variation in annual wolf predation rate, with the highest predation during the deepest snow.

  7. Nest Predation Deviates from Nest Predator Abundance in an Ecologically Trapped Bird.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Franck A Hollander

    Full Text Available In human-modified environments, ecological traps may result from a preference for low-quality habitat where survival or reproductive success is lower than in high-quality habitat. It has often been shown that low reproductive success for birds in preferred habitat types was due to higher nest predator abundance. However, between-habitat differences in nest predation may only weakly correlate with differences in nest predator abundance. An ecological trap is at work in a farmland bird (Lanius collurio that recently expanded its breeding habitat into open areas in plantation forests. This passerine bird shows a strong preference for forest habitat, but it has a higher nest success in farmland. We tested whether higher abundance of nest predators in the preferred habitat or, alternatively, a decoupling of nest predator abundance and nest predation explained this observed pattern of maladaptive habitat selection. More than 90% of brood failures were attributed to nest predation. Nest predator abundance was more than 50% higher in farmland, but nest predation was 17% higher in forest. Differences between nest predation on actual shrike nests and on artificial nests suggested that parent shrikes may facilitate nest disclosure for predators in forest more than they do in farmland. The level of caution by parent shrikes when visiting their nest during a simulated nest predator intrusion was the same in the two habitats, but nest concealment was considerably lower in forest, which contributes to explaining the higher nest predation in this habitat. We conclude that a decoupling of nest predator abundance and nest predation may create ecological traps in human-modified environments.

  8. Drought-caused delay in nesting of Sonoran Desert birds and its facilitation of parasite- and predator-mediated variation in reproductive success

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCreedy, Chris; van Riper, Charles

    2015-01-01

    As our understanding of climate change has increased, so has our awareness of the impacts of these changes on biotic systems. Climate models are nearly unanimous in their predictions for increased drought frequency in southwestern North America, and delays in nest initiation due to drought may influence nesting success and productivity for many Sonoran Desert bird species. In southeastern California and western Arizona in 2004–2009, we found negative correlations for 13 of 13 species between nest initiation date and rainfall accumulation during the preceding 4-month winter rainy season. Nesting was delayed more than 3 weeks for some species during extreme droughts in 2006 and 2007. During 2004–2009, we found a significant negative effect of nest initiation date on nest survival probability (β̂ = −0.031 ± 0.005 SE, P nesting delay in nesting success and productivity, in 2010 we conducted a manipulative experiment with Black-tailed Gnatcatchers (Polioptila melanura; BTGN) and Verdins (Auriparus flaviceps; VERD). Following a wet winter, we delayed clutch initiation dates for treatment pairs to match first-egg dates that we observed during droughts in 2006 and 2007. Nest initiation date had a significant negative effect on nest survival of both species (BTGN: β̂ = −1.18 ± 0.27 SE, P nest predation and Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater) parasitism were the most common causes of nest failure, we conclude that the impacts of climate change–caused drought on annual reproductive output in the Sonoran Desert will be further compounded by parasitism and predation for Black-tailed Gnatcatchers and by predation for Verdins.

  9. Effects of osmotic stress on predation behaviour of Asterias rubens L.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aguera Garcia, Antonio; Schellekens, Tim; Jansen, J.M.; Smaal, A.C.

    2015-01-01

    Environmental stress plays an important role in determining ecosystem functioning and structure. In estuarine areas both tidal and seasonal salinity changes may cause osmotic stress on predators, affecting their behaviour and survival. The interaction between these predators and their prey may

  10. Predation Risk versus Pesticide Exposure: Consequences of Fear and Loathing in the Life of Stream Shredders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pestana, J. T.; Baird, D. J.; Soares, A. M.

    2005-05-01

    Stream invertebrates are exposed to complex stressor regimes including both biotic and abiotic factors. Species living in streams in agricultural landscapes are often subjected to episodic or continuous exposures to low levels of agrochemicals, which may approach or exceed specific substance guidelines. Sublethal effects of pesticides may result in direct effects on organisms (e.g. reduced physiological performance), which may in turn contribute to indirect effects relating to survival (e.g. increased predation risk). Here, we investigate the possibility that predator-release kairomones can act additively with low-level pesticide exposure to reduce physiological performance and survival of stream invertebrates in previously unforeseen ways. Feeding, metabolic and behavioural responses of two shredder insects, the North American stonefly Pteronarcys comstockii and the European caddisfly Sericostoma vittatum were measured under exposure to the insecticide imidacloprid at different levels of indirect predation stress using predator-release kairomones from Brown Trout (Salmo trutta). Pteronarcys feeding was measured in terms of mass of naturally conditioned alder leaf discs consumed over a 6-day and 10 -day period in animals held in cages in stream mesocosms. Pteronarcys feeding was impaired at 1 ppb in the 6-day trial and at 0,5 ppb in the 10-day trial relatively to unexposed controls. Metabolic rate was measured in the lab in terms of oxygen consumption of Pteronarcys. Animals exposed to 0.5 and 1 ppb imidacloprid showed elevated respiratory rates compared to controls. Laboratory experiments with Sericostoma, currently in progress, are examining the separate and combined effects of imidacloprid and predator kairomone on similar endpoints. These preliminary results are discussed in relation to the development of the Mechanistic Unifying Stressor Effects (MUSE) model which can be used to predict combined ecological effects of multiple stressors at the population level.

  11. How do brent geese (Branta b. bernicla) cope with evil?; complex relationships between predators and prey

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ebbinge, B.S.; Spaans, B.

    2002-01-01

    Actual predation is rarely observed in the field, and therefore the role of predators is often severely underestimated. Species are limited in their distribution, which is caused not only by predation but also by the anti-predator behaviour that prey-species have developed under the continuous

  12. Evolution of Swarming Behavior Is Shaped by How Predators Attack.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olson, Randal S; Knoester, David B; Adami, Christoph

    2016-01-01

    Animal grouping behaviors have been widely studied due to their implications for understanding social intelligence, collective cognition, and potential applications in engineering, artificial intelligence, and robotics. An important biological aspect of these studies is discerning which selection pressures favor the evolution of grouping behavior. In the past decade, researchers have begun using evolutionary computation to study the evolutionary effects of these selection pressures in predator-prey models. The selfish herd hypothesis states that concentrated groups arise because prey selfishly attempt to place their conspecifics between themselves and the predator, thus causing an endless cycle of movement toward the center of the group. Using an evolutionary model of a predator-prey system, we show that how predators attack is critical to the evolution of the selfish herd. Following this discovery, we show that density-dependent predation provides an abstraction of Hamilton's original formulation of domains of danger. Finally, we verify that density-dependent predation provides a sufficient selective advantage for prey to evolve the selfish herd in response to predation by coevolving predators. Thus, our work corroborates Hamilton's selfish herd hypothesis in a digital evolutionary model, refines the assumptions of the selfish herd hypothesis, and generalizes the domain of danger concept to density-dependent predation.

  13. Predator confusion is sufficient to evolve swarming behavior

    OpenAIRE

    Olson, Randal S.; Hintze, Arend; Dyer, Fred C.; Knoester, David B.; Adami, Christoph

    2012-01-01

    Swarming behaviors in animals have been extensively studied due to their implications for the evolution of cooperation, social cognition, and predator-prey dynamics. An important goal of these studies is discerning which evolutionary pressures favor the formation of swarms. One hypothesis is that swarms arise because the presence of multiple moving prey in swarms causes confusion for attacking predators, but it remains unclear how important this selective force is. Using an evolutionary model...

  14. Plant species composition alters the sign and strength of an emergent multi-predator effect by modifying predator foraging behaviour.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew Wilby

    Full Text Available The prediction of pest-control functioning by multi-predator communities is hindered by the non-additive nature of species functioning. Such non-additivity, commonly termed an emergent multi-predator effect, is known to be affected by elements of the ecological context, such as the structure and composition of vegetation, in addition to the traits of the predators themselves. Here we report mesocosm experiments designed to test the influence of plant density and species composition (wheat monoculture or wheat and faba bean polyculture on the emergence of multi-predator effects between Adalia bipunctata and Chrysoperla carnea, in their suppression of populations of the aphid Metopolophium dirhodum. The mesocosm experiments were followed by a series of behavioural observations designed to identify how interactions among predators are modified by plant species composition and whether these effects are consistent with the observed influence of plant species composition on aphid population suppression. Although plant density was shown to have no influence on the multi-predator effect on aphid population growth, plant composition had a marked effect. In wheat monoculture, Adalia and Chrysoperla mixed treatments caused greater suppression of M. dirhodum populations than expected. However this positive emergent effect was reversed to a negative multi-predator effect in wheat and faba bean polyculture. The behavioural observations revealed that although dominant individuals did not respond to the presence of faba bean plants, the behaviour of sub-dominants was affected markedly, consistent with their foraging for extra-floral nectar produced by the faba bean. This interaction between plant composition and predator community composition on the foraging behaviour of sub-dominants is thought to underlie the observed effect of plant composition on the multi-predator effect. Thus, the emergence of multi-predator effects is shown to be strongly influenced by

  15. Mink predation on brown trout in a Black Hills stream

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Jacob L.; Wilhite, Jerry W.; Chipps, Steven R.

    2016-01-01

    In the early 2000’s, declines in the brown trout (Salmo trutta) fishery in Rapid Creek, South Dakota, caused concern for anglers and fisheries managers. We conducted a radio telemetry study in 2010 and 2011 to identify predation mortality associated with mink, using hatchery-reared (2010) or wild (2011) brown trout. Estimated predation rates by mink (Mustela vison) on radio-tagged brown trout were 30% for hatchery fish and 32% for wild fish. Size frequency analysis revealed that the size distribution of brown trout lost to predation was similar to that of other, radio-tagged brown trout. In both years, a higher proportion of predation mortality (83–92%) occurred during spring, consistent with seasonal fish consumption by mink. Predation by mink appeared to be a significant source of brown trout mortality in our study.

  16. Exploiting Scanning Behavior for Predators Can Reduce Rice Damage Caused by Birds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takeshi Honda

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Rice is often damaged by birds, especially sparrows, in Asia. Bird nets are sometimes used as countermeasures; however this approach is expensive and labor intensive. For this reason, farmers generally eschew bird nets, even though no alternative countermeasures are available. This study focused on exploiting the bird behavior of scanning for predators to reduce crop damage. When birds forage for seeds on the ground they often stop pecking and briefly raise their heads, apparently to scan for predators. Low visibility habitats increase scanning behavior and increased scanning behavior reduces habitat quality from the bird’s perspective; therefore, this study tested the relationship between rice damage rate and visibility at the periphery of rice fields, where tree sparrows rest after feeding. Overall, low visibility reduced damage to rice. Because visibility was mainly affected by weeds, weed management techniques contribute to crop damage management. To reduce damage, weeding can be decreased; therefore, this technique is cost- and labor-efficient.

  17. Supersymmetric dark matter: Indirect detection

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bergstroem, L.

    2000-01-01

    Dark matter detection experiments are improving to the point where they can detect or restrict the primary particle physics candidates for non baryonic dark matter. The methods for detection are usually categorized as direct, i.e., searching for signals caused by passage of dark matter particles in terrestrial detectors, or indirect. Indirect detection methods include searching for antimatter and gamma rays, in particular gamma ray lines, in cosmic rays and high-energy neutrinos from the centre of the Earth or Sun caused by accretion and annihilation of dark matter particles. A review is given of recent progress in indirect detection, both on the theoretical and experimental side

  18. Maternal intraguild predation risk affects offspring anti-predator behavior and learning in mites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seiter, Michael; Schausberger, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Predation risk is a strong selective force shaping prey morphology, life history and behavior. Anti-predator behaviors may be innate, learned or both but little is known about the transgenerational behavioral effects of maternally experienced predation risk. We examined intraguild predation (IGP) risk-induced maternal effects on offspring anti-predator behavior, including learning, in the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis. We exposed predatory mite mothers during egg production to presence or absence of the IG predator Amblyseius andersoni and assessed whether maternal stress affects the anti-predator behavior, including larval learning ability, of their offspring as protonymphs. Protonymphs emerging from stressed or unstressed mothers, and having experienced IGP risk as larvae or not, were subjected to choice situations with and without IG predator traces. Predator-experienced protonymphs from stressed mothers were the least active and acted the boldest in site choice towards predator cues. We argue that the attenuated response of the protonymphs to predator traces alone represents optimized risk management because no immediate risk existed. Such behavioral adjustment could reduce the inherent fitness costs of anti-predator behaviors. Overall, our study suggests that P. persimilis mothers experiencing IGP risk may prime their offspring to behave more optimally in IGP environments. PMID:26449645

  19. Predator effects on reef fish settlement depend on predator origin and recruit density.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benkwitt, Cassandra E

    2017-04-01

    During major life-history transitions, animals often experience high mortality rates due to predation, making predator avoidance particularly advantageous during these times. There is mixed evidence from a limited number of studies, however, regarding how predator presence influences settlement of coral-reef fishes and it is unknown how other potentially mediating factors, including predator origin (native vs. nonnative) or interactions among conspecific recruits, mediate the non-consumptive effects of predators on reef fish settlement. During a field experiment in the Caribbean, approximately 52% fewer mahogany snapper (Lutjanus mahogoni) recruited to reefs with a native predator (graysby grouper, Cephalopholis cruentata) than to predator-free control reefs and reefs with an invasive predator (red lionfish, Pterois volitans) regardless of predator diet. These results suggest that snapper recruits do not recognize nonnative lionfish as a threat. However, these effects depended on the density of conspecific recruits, with evidence that competition may limit the response of snapper to even native predators at the highest recruit densities. In contrast, there was no effect of predator presence or conspecific density on the recruitment of bicolor damselfish (Stegastes partitus). These context-dependent responses of coral-reef fishes to predators during settlement may influence individual survival and shape subsequent population and community dynamics. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  20. Power lines, roads, and avian nest survival: effects on predator identity and predation intensity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeGregorio, Brett A; Weatherhead, Patrick J; Sperry, Jinelle H

    2014-05-01

    1 Anthropogenic alteration of landscapes can affect avian nest success by influencing the abundance, distribution, and behavior of predators. Understanding avian nest predation risk necessitates understanding how landscapes affect predator distribution and behavior. 2 From a sample of 463 nests of 17 songbird species, we evaluated how landscape features (distance to forest edge, unpaved roads, and power lines) influenced daily nest survival. We also used video cameras to identify nest predators at 137 nest predation events and evaluated how landscape features influenced predator identity. Finally, we determined the abundance and distribution of several of the principal predators using surveys and radiotelemetry. 3 Distance to power lines was the best predictor of predator identity: predation by brown-headed cowbirds (Molothrus ater), corvids (Corvus sp. and Cyanocitta cristata), racers (Coluber constrictor), and coachwhips (Masticophis flagellum) increased with proximity to power lines, whereas predation by rat snakes (Elaphe obsoleta) and raptors decreased. In some cases, predator density may reliably indicate nest predation risk because racers, corvids, and cowbirds frequently used power line right-of-ways. 4 Of five bird species with enough nests to analyze individually, daily nest survival of only indigo buntings (Passerina cyanea) decreased with proximity to power lines, despite predation by most predators at our site being positively associated with power lines. For all nesting species combined, distance to unpaved road was the model that most influenced daily nest survival. This pattern is likely a consequence of rat snakes, the locally dominant nest predator (28% of predation events), rarely using power lines and associated areas. Instead, rat snakes were frequently associated with road edges, indicating that not all edges are functionally similar. 5 Our results suggest that interactions between predators and landscape features are likely to be specific to

  1. Fish ladders: safe fish passage or hotspot for predation?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Angelo Antonio Agostinho

    Full Text Available Fish ladders are a strategy for conserving biodiversity, as they can provide connectivity between fragmented habitats and reduce predation on shoals that accumulate immediately below dams. Although the impact of predation downstream of reservoirs has been investigated, especially in juvenile salmonids during their downstream movements, nothing is known about predation on Neotropical fish in the attraction and containment areas commonly found in translocation facilities. This study analysed predation in a fish passage system at the Lajeado Dam on the Tocantins River in Brazil. The abundance, distribution, and the permanence (time spent of large predatory fish along the ladder, the injuries imposed by piranhas during passage and the presence of other vertebrate predators were investigated. From December 2002 to October 2003, sampling was conducted in four regions (downstream, along the ladder, in the forebay, and upstream of the reservoir using gillnets, cast nets and counts or visual observations. The captured fish were tagged with thread and beads, and any mutilations were registered. Fish, birds and dolphins were the main predator groups observed, with a predominance of the first two groups. The entrance to the ladder, in the downstream region, was the area with the highest number of large predators and was the only region with relevant non-fish vertebrates. The main predatory fish species were Rhaphiodon vulpinus, Hydrolycus armatus, and Serrasalmus rhombeus. Tagged individuals were detected predating along the ladder for up to 90 days. Mutilations caused by Serrasalmus attacks were noted in 36% of species and 4% of individuals at the top of the ladder. Our results suggested that the high density of fish in the restricted ladder environment, which is associated with injuries suffered along the ladder course and the presence of multiple predator groups with different predation strategies, transformed the fish corridor into a hotspot for

  2. Predation efficiency of Anopheles gambiae larvae by aquatic predators in western Kenya highlands

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    Nyindo Mramba

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The current status of insecticide resistance in mosquitoes and the effects of insecticides on non-target insect species have raised the need for alternative control methods for malaria vectors. Predation has been suggested as one of the important regulation mechanisms for malaria vectors in long-lasting aquatic habitats, but the predation efficiency of the potential predators is largely unknown in the highlands of western Kenya. In the current study, we examined the predation efficiency of five predators on Anopheles gambiae s.s larvae in 24 hour and semi- field evaluations. Methods Predators were collected from natural habitats and starved for 12 hours prior to starting experiments. Preliminary experiments were conducted to ascertain the larval stage most predated by each predator species. When each larval instar was subjected to predation, third instar larvae were predated at the highest rate. Third instar larvae of An. gambiae were introduced into artificial habitats with and without refugia at various larval densities. The numbers of surviving larvae were counted after 24 hours in 24. In semi-field experiments, the larvae were counted daily until they were all either consumed or had developed to the pupal stage. Polymerase chain reaction was used to confirm the presence of An. gambiae DNA in predator guts. Results Experiments found that habitat type (P P P P An. gambiae DNA was found in at least three out of ten midguts for all predator species. Gambusia affins was the most efficient, being three times more efficient than tadpoles. Conclusion These experiments provide insight into the efficiency of specific natural predators against mosquito larvae. These naturally occurring predators may be useful in biocontrol strategies for aquatic stage An. gambiae mosquitoes. Further investigations should be done in complex natural habitats for these predators.

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

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    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

  4. Predation on rose galls: parasitoids and predators determine gall size through directional selection.

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    Zoltán László

    Full Text Available Both predators and parasitoids can have significant effects on species' life history traits, such as longevity or clutch size. In the case of gall inducers, sporadically there is evidence to suggest that both vertebrate predation and insect parasitoid attack may shape the optimal gall size. While the effects of parasitoids have been studied in detail, the influence of vertebrate predation is less well-investigated. To better understand this aspect of gall size evolution, we studied vertebrate predation on galls of Diplolepis rosae on rose (Rosa canina shrubs. We measured predation frequency, predation incidence, and predation rate in a large-scale observational field study, as well as an experimental field study. Our combined results suggest that, similarly to parasitoids, vertebrate predation makes a considerable contribution to mortality of gall inducer larvae. On the other hand, its influence on gall size is in direct contrast to the effect of parasitoids, as frequency of vertebrate predation increases with gall size. This suggests that the balance between predation and parasitoid attack shapes the optimal size of D. rosae galls.

  5. Advanced autumn migration of sparrowhawk has increased the predation risk of long-distance migrants in Finland.

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    Aleksi Lehikoinen

    Full Text Available Predation affects life history traits of nearly all organisms and the population consequences of predator avoidance are often larger than predation itself. Climate change has been shown to cause phenological changes. These changes are not necessarily similar between species and may cause mismatches between prey and predator. Eurasian sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus, the main predator of passerines, has advanced its autumn phenology by about ten days in 30 years due to climate change. However, we do not know if sparrowhawk migrate earlier in response to earlier migration by its prey or if earlier sparrowhawk migration results in changes to predation risk on its prey. By using the median departure date of 41 passerine species I was able to show that early migrating passerines tend to advance, and late migrating species delay their departure, but none of the species have advanced their departure times as much as the sparrowhawk. This has lead to a situation of increased predation risk on early migrating long-distance migrants (LDM and decreased the overlap of migration season with later departing short-distance migrants (SDM. Findings highlight the growing list of problems of declining LDM populations caused by climate change. On the other hand it seems that the autumn migration may become safer for SDM whose populations are growing. Results demonstrate that passerines show very conservative response in autumn phenology to climate change, and thus phenological mismatches caused by global warming are not necessarily increasing towards the higher trophic levels.

  6. Habitat connectivity and resident shared predators determine the impact of invasive bullfrogs on native frogs in farm ponds.

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    Atobe, Takashi; Osada, Yutaka; Takeda, Hayato; Kuroe, Misako; Miyashita, Tadashi

    2014-07-07

    Habitat connectivity is considered to have an important role on the persistence of populations in the face of habitat fragmentation, in particular, for species with conservation concern. However, it can also impose indirect negative effects on native species through the spread of invasive species. Here, we investigated direct and indirect effects of habitat connectivity on populations of invasive bullfrogs and native wrinkled frogs and how these effects are modified by the presence of common carp, a resident shared predator, in a farm pond system in Japan. The distribution pattern analysis using a hierarchical Bayesian modelling indicated that bullfrogs had negative effects on wrinkled frogs, and that these negative effects were enhanced with increasing habitat connectivity owing to the metapopulation structure of bullfrogs. The analysis also suggested that common carp mitigated these impacts, presumably owing to a top-down trophic cascade through preferential predation on bullfrog tadpoles. These presumed interspecific interactions were supported by evidence from laboratory experiments, i.e. predation by carp was more intense on bullfrog tadpoles than on wrinkled frog tadpoles owing to the difference in refuge use. Our results indicate that metacommunity perspectives could provide useful insights for establishing effective management strategies of invasive species living in patchy habitats. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  7. The importance of high-level predators in marine protected area management: Consequences of their decline and their potential recovery in the Mediterranean context

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    Giulia Prato

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available High-level predators have been depleted in the oceans worldwide following centuries of selective fishing. There is widespread evidence that high-level predators’ extirpation may trigger trophic cascades leading to the degradation of marine ecosystems. Restoration of large carnivores to former levels of abundance might lead to ecosystem recovery, but very few pristine ecosystems are left as baselines for comparison. Marine protected areas (MPAs can trigger initial rapid increases of high-level predator abundance and biomass. Nevertheless, long term protection is needed before the ecosystem's carrying capacity for large carnivores is approached and indirect effects on lower trophic levels are observed. The Mediterranean is probably very far from its pristine condition, due to a long history of fishing. Today small to medium-sized consumers (e.g. sea breams are the most abundant predators shaping coastal benthic communities, while historical reconstructions depict abundant populations of large piscivores and sharks inhabiting coastal areas. Mediterranean MPAs are following a promising trajectory of ecosystem recovery, as suggested by a strong gradient of fish biomass increase. Consistent monitoring methods to assess relative variations of high-level predators, together with food-web models aimed at disentangling the indirect effects of their recovery, could be useful tools to help set up appropriate management strategies of MPAs.

  8. Interactions among predators and plant specificity protect herbivores from top predators.

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    Bosc, Christopher; Pauw, Anton; Roets, Francois; Hui, Cang

    2018-05-04

    The worldwide loss of top predators from natural and agricultural systems has heightened the need to understand how important they are in controlling herbivore abundance. The effect of top predators on herbivore species is likely to depend on 1) the importance of the consumption of intermediate predators by top predators (intra-guild predation; IGP), but also on 2) plant specificity by herbivores, because specialists may defend themselves better (enemy-free space; EFS). Insectivorous birds, as top predators, are generally known to effectively control herbivorous insects, despite also consuming intermediate predators such as spiders, but how this effect varies among herbivore species in relation to the cascading effects of IGP and EFS is not known. To explore this, we excluded birds from natural fynbos vegetation in South Africa using large netted cages and recorded changes in abundance relative to control plots for 199 plant-dwelling intermediate predator and 341 herbivore morpho-species that varied in their estimated plant specificity. We found a strong negative effect of birds on the total abundance of all intermediate predators, with especially clear effects on spiders (strong IGP). In contrast with previous studies, which document a negative effect of birds on herbivores, we found an overall neutral effect of birds on herbivore abundance, but the effect varied among species: some species were negatively affected by birds, suggesting that they were mainly consumed by birds, whereas others, likely released from spiders by IGP, were positively affected. Some species were also effectively neutrally affected by birds. These tended to be more specialized to plants compared to the other species, which may imply that some plant specialists benefited from protection provided by EFS from both birds and spiders. These results suggest that the response of herbivore species to top predators may depend on cascading effects of interactions among predators and on their degree

  9. A non-native prey mediates the effects of a shared predator on an ecosystem service.

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    James E Byers

    Full Text Available Non-native species can alter ecosystem functions performed by native species often by displacing influential native species. However, little is known about how ecosystem functions may be modified by trait-mediated indirect effects of non-native species. Oysters and other reef-associated filter feeders enhance water quality by controlling nutrients and contaminants in many estuarine environments. However, this ecosystem service may be mitigated by predation, competition, or other species interactions, especially when such interactions involve non-native species that share little evolutionary history. We assessed trophic and other interference effects on the critical ecosystem service of water filtration in mesocosm experiments. In single-species trials, typical field densities of oysters (Crassostrea virginica reduced water-column chlorophyll a more strongly than clams (Mercenaria mercenaria. The non-native filter-feeding reef crab Petrolisthes armatus did not draw down chlorophyll a. In multi-species treatments, oysters and clams combined additively to influence chlorophyll a drawdown. Petrolisthes did not affect net filtration when added to the bivalve-only treatments. Addition of the predatory mud crab Panopeus herbstii did not influence oyster feeding rates, but it did stop chlorophyll a drawdown by clams. However, when Petrolisthes was also added in with the clams, the clams filtered at their previously unadulterated rates, possibly because Petrolisthes drew the focus of predators or habituated the clams to crab stimuli. In sum, oysters were the most influential filter feeder, and neither predators nor competitors interfered with their net effect on water-column chlorophyll. In contrast, clams filtered less, but were more sensitive to predators as well as a facilitative buffering effect of Petrolisthes, illustrating that non-native species can indirectly affect an ecosystem service by aiding the performance of a native species.

  10. Immune-related effects from predation risk in Neotropical blue-black grassquits (Volatinia jacarina).

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    Caetano, João V O; Maia, Maya R; Manica, Lilian T; Macedo, Regina H

    2014-11-01

    Predation is a major force shaping natural history traits of birds because of their vulnerability during nesting and higher visibility during diurnal activities. For most birds in the Neotropics, predation is the major cause of nest failure due to the region's high diversity and abundance of predators. The blue-black grassquit (Volatinia jacarina), similarly to other small passerines in the savanna region of central Brazil, suffers extremely high rates of nest predation. Additionally, males may be particularly vulnerable to predators since they are very conspicuous when executing courtship displays. We assessed some of the non-lethal costs of predation risk on this species by comparing physiological and morphological parameters of birds exposed to predator vocalizations with that of control subjects exposed to non-predator vocalizations. Birds exposed to the predator vocalizations exhibited an immune-related reaction (changes in their H/L ratio), but no changes were observed in other biological parameters measured. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Neotropical Behaviour. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Predators and the public trust.

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    Treves, Adrian; Chapron, Guillaume; López-Bao, Jose V; Shoemaker, Chase; Goeckner, Apollonia R; Bruskotter, Jeremy T

    2017-02-01

    behavioural ecologies of humans and predators. The scientific community has not reached consensus on sustainable levels of human-caused mortality for many predator populations. This challenge includes both genuine conceptual uncertainty and exploitation of scientific debate for political gain. Second, human intolerance for predators exposes value conflicts about preferences for some wildlife over others and balancing majority rule with the protection of minorities in a democracy. We examine how differences between traditional assumptions and scientific studies of interactions between people and predators impede evidence-based policy. Even if the prior challenges can be overcome, well-reasoned policy on wild animals faces a greater challenge than other environmental assets because animals and humans change behaviour in response to each other in the short term. These coupled, dynamic responses exacerbate clashes between uses that deplete wildlife and uses that enhance or preserve wildlife. Viewed in this way, environmental assets demand sophisticated, careful accounting by disinterested trustees who can both understand the multidisciplinary scientific measurements of relative costs and benefits among competing uses, and justly balance the needs of all beneficiaries including future generations. Without public trust principles, future trustees will seldom prevail against narrow, powerful, and undemocratic interests. Without conservation informed by public trust thinking predator populations will face repeated cycles of eradication and recovery. Our conclusions have implications for the many subfields of the biological sciences that address environmental trust assets from the atmosphere to aquifers. © 2015 The Authors. Biological Reviews published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Cambridge Philosophical Society.

  12. Nest predation risk explains variation in avian clutch size

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    Dillon, Kristen G.; Conway, Courtney J.

    2018-01-01

    Questions about the ecological drivers of, and mechanistic constraints on, productivity have driven research on life-history evolution for decades. Resource availability and offspring mortality are considered among the 2 most important influences on the number of offspring per reproductive attempt. We used a factorial experimental design to manipulate food abundance and perceived offspring predation risk in a wild avian population (red-faced warblers; Cardellina rubrifrons) to identify the mechanistic cause of variation in avian clutch size. Additionally, we tested whether female quality helped explain the extant variation in clutch size. We found no support for the Food Limitation or Female Quality Hypotheses, but we did find support for both predictions of the Nest Predation Risk Hypothesis. Females that experienced an experimentally heightened perception of offspring predation risk responded by laying a smaller clutch than females in the control group. Additionally, predation rates at artificial nests were highest where red-faced warbler clutch size was smallest (at high elevations). Life-history theory predicts that an individual should invest less in reproduction when high nest predation risk reduces the likely benefit from that nesting attempt and, indeed, we found that birds exhibit phenotypic plasticity in clutch size by laying fewer eggs in response to increasing nest predation risk.

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

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    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.

  14. Ocean acidification alters predator behaviour and reduces predation rate.

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    Watson, Sue-Ann; Fields, Jennifer B; Munday, Philip L

    2017-02-01

    Ocean acidification poses a range of threats to marine invertebrates; however, the emerging and likely widespread effects of rising carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) levels on marine invertebrate behaviour are still little understood. Here, we show that ocean acidification alters and impairs key ecological behaviours of the predatory cone snail Conus marmoreus Projected near-future seawater CO 2 levels (975 µatm) increased activity in this coral reef molluscivore more than threefold (from less than 4 to more than 12 mm min -1 ) and decreased the time spent buried to less than one-third when compared with the present-day control conditions (390 µatm). Despite increasing activity, elevated CO 2 reduced predation rate during predator-prey interactions with control-treated humpbacked conch, Gibberulus gibberulus gibbosus; 60% of control predators successfully captured and consumed their prey, compared with only 10% of elevated CO 2 predators. The alteration of key ecological behaviours of predatory invertebrates by near-future ocean acidification could have potentially far-reaching implications for predator-prey interactions and trophic dynamics in marine ecosystems. Combined evidence that the behaviours of both species in this predator-prey relationship are altered by elevated CO 2 suggests food web interactions and ecosystem structure will become increasingly difficult to predict as ocean acidification advances over coming decades. © 2017 The Author(s).

  15. Estimating two indirect logging costs caused by accelerated erosion.

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    Glen O. Klock

    1976-01-01

    In forest areas where high soil erosion potential exists, a comparative yarding cost estimate, including the indirect costs determined by methods proposed here, shows that the total cost of using "advanced" logging methods may be less than that of "traditional" systems.

  16. Predation risk affects reproductive physiology and demography of elk.

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    Creel, Scott; Christianson, David; Liley, Stewart; Winnie, John A

    2007-02-16

    Elk (Cervus elaphus) in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem alter patterns of aggregation, habitat selection, vigilance, and foraging in the presence of wolves (Canis lupus). Antipredator behaviors like these can reduce predation risk but are also likely to carry costs. Data from five elk populations studied for 16 site years showed that progesterone concentrations (from 1489 fecal samples) declined with the ratio of elk to wolves. In turn, progesterone concentrations were a good predictor of calf recruitment in the subsequent year. Together, these data suggest that wolves indirectly affect the reproductive physiology and the demography of elk through the costs of antipredator behavior.

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

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    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.

  18. Indirect risk effects reduce feeding efficiency of ducks during spring.

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    Behney, Adam C; O'Shaughnessy, Ryan; Eichholz, Michael W; Stafford, Joshua D

    2018-01-01

    Indirect risk effects of predators on prey behavior can have more of an impact on prey populations than direct consumptive effects. Predation risk can elicit more vigilance behavior in prey, reducing the amount of time available for other activities, such as foraging, which could potentially reduce foraging efficiency. Understanding the conditions associated with predation risk and the specific effects predation risk have on prey behavior is important because it has direct influences on the profitability of food items found under various conditions and states of the forager. The goals of this study were to assess how ducks perceived predation risk in various habitat types and how strongly perceived risk versus energetic demand affected foraging behavior. We manipulated food abundance in different wetland types in Illinois, USA to reduce confounding between food abundance and vegetation structure. We conducted focal-animal behavioral samples on five duck species in treatment and control plots and used generalized linear mixed-effects models to compare the effects of vegetation structure versus other factors on the intensity with which ducks fed and the duration of feeding stints. Mallards fed more intensively and, along with blue-winged teal, used longer feeding stints in open habitats, consistent with the hypothesis that limited visibility was perceived to have a greater predation risk than unlimited visibility. The species temporally nearest to nesting, wood ducks, were willing to take more risks for a greater food reward, consistent with an increase in a marginal value of energy as they approached nesting. Our results indicate that some duck species value energy differently based on the surrounding vegetation structure and density. Furthermore, increases in the marginal value of energy can be more influential than perceived risk in shaping foraging behavior patterns. Based on these findings, we conclude that the value of various food items is not solely

  19. Laying the foundations for a human-predator conflict solution: assessing the impact of Bonelli's eagle on rabbits and partridges.

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    Moleón, Marcos; Sánchez-Zapata, José A; Gil-Sánchez, José M; Barea-Azcón, José M; Ballesteros-Duperón, Elena; Virgós, Emilio

    2011-01-01

    Predation may potentially lead to negative effects on both prey (directly via predators) and predators (indirectly via human persecution). Predation pressure studies are, therefore, of major interest in the fields of theoretical knowledge and conservation of prey or predator species, with wide ramifications and profound implications in human-wildlife conflicts. However, detailed works on this issue in highly valuable--in conservation terms--Mediterranean ecosystems are virtually absent. This paper explores the predator-hunting conflict by examining a paradigmatic, Mediterranean-wide (endangered) predator-two prey (small game) system. We estimated the predation impact ('kill rate' and 'predation rate', i.e., number of prey and proportion of the prey population eaten, respectively) of Bonelli's eagle Aquila fasciata on rabbit Oryctolagus cuniculus and red-legged partridge Alectoris rufa populations in two seasons (the eagle's breeding and non-breeding periods, 100 days each) in SE Spain. The mean estimated kill rate by the seven eagle reproductive units in the study area was c. 304 rabbits and c. 262 partridges in the breeding season, and c. 237 rabbits and c. 121 partridges in the non-breeding period. This resulted in very low predation rates (range: 0.3-2.5%) for both prey and seasons. The potential role of Bonelli's eagles as a limiting factor for rabbits and partridges at the population scale was very poor. The conflict between game profitability and conservation interest of either prey or predators is apparently very localised, and eagles, quarry species and game interests seem compatible in most of the study area. Currently, both the persecution and negative perception of Bonelli's eagle (the 'partridge-eating eagle' in Spanish) have a null theoretical basis in most of this area.

  20. Predation on larval Atlantic herring (Clupea harengus) in inshore waters of the Baltic Sea

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    Kotterba, Paul; Moll, Dorothee; von Nordheim, Lena; Peck, Myron A.; Oesterwind, Daniel; Polte, Patrick

    2017-11-01

    In fishery science, early life-stage survival and development are regarded as major factors driving the population dynamics of marine fishes. During the last century, the main research focus has been on the spatio-temporal match of larval fish and appropriate food (bottom-up processes). However, these field studies are often criticised for their limited capability to disentangle their results from mortality caused by predation since these top-down mechanisms are rarely studied. We examined the predation on herring (Clupea harengus) larvae in a Baltic inshore lagoon by investigating the spatio-temporal overlap of larval herring and their potential predators such as the dominant threespine stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus) in distinct habitats (sublittoral and littoral areas) using a set of different gears and sampling techniques. Despite significant spatial and temporal predator-prey overlap, stomach analyses suggested that very few larvae were consumed by sticklebacks, even if projected to the entire study area and season. Other well-known predators of clupeid larvae such as gelatinous plankton occur later in the year after young herring have migrated out of the system. The observed predation on herring larvae was much less than expected and appears being a minor factor in determining herring reproduction success in our study area, particularly if compared to other causes of mortality such as egg predation. Providing a relatively good shelter from predation might be a key element making transitional waters valuable nursery grounds for the offspring of migrating marine fish species.

  1. Assessing the direct and indirect effects of food provisioning and nutrient enrichment on wildlife infectious disease dynamics.

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    Civitello, David J; Allman, Brent E; Morozumi, Connor; Rohr, Jason R

    2018-05-05

    Anthropogenic resource supplementation can shape wildlife disease directly by altering the traits and densities of hosts and parasites or indirectly by stimulating prey, competitor or predator species. We first assess the direct epidemiological consequences of supplementation, highlighting the similarities and differences between food provisioning and two widespread forms of nutrient input: agricultural fertilization and aquatic nutrient enrichment. We then review an aquatic disease system and a general model to assess whether predator and competitor species can enhance or overturn the direct effects of enrichment. All forms of supplementation can directly affect epidemics by increasing host population size or altering parasite production within hosts, but food provisioning is most likely to aggregate hosts and increase parasite transmission. However, if predators or competitors increase in response to supplementation, they could alter resource-fuelled outbreaks in focal hosts. We recommend identifying the traits of hosts, parasites or interacting species that best predict epidemiological responses to supplementation and evaluating the relative importance of these direct and indirect mechanisms. Theory and experiments should examine the timing of behavioural, physiological and demographic changes for realistic, variable scenarios of supplementation. A more integrative view of resource supplementation and wildlife disease could yield broadly applicable disease management strategies.This article is part of the theme issue 'Anthropogenic resource subsidies and host-parasite dynamics in wildlife'. © 2018 The Author(s).

  2. Seasonal Effects of Habitat on Sources and Rates of Snowshoe Hare Predation in Alaskan Boreal Forests.

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    Dashiell Feierabend

    Full Text Available Survival and predation of snowshoe hares (Lepus americanus has been widely studied, yet there has been little quantification of the changes in vulnerability of hares to specific predators that may result from seasonal changes in vegetation and cover. We investigated survival and causes of mortalities of snowshoe hares during the late increase, peak, and decline of a population in interior Alaska. From June 2008 to May 2012, we radio-tagged 288 adult and older juvenile hares in early successional and black spruce (Picea mariana forests and, using known-fate methods in program MARK, evaluated 85 survival models that included variables for sex, age, and body condition of hares, as well as trapping site, month, season, year, snowfall, snow depth, and air temperature. We compared the models using Akaike's information criterion with correction for small sample size. Model results indicated that month, capture site, and body condition were the most important variables in explaining survival rates. Survival was highest in July, and more generally during summer, when alternative prey was available to predators of hares. Low survival rates coincided with molting periods, breeding activity in the spring, and the introduction of juveniles to the sample population in the fall. We identified predation as the cause of mortality in 86% of hare deaths. When the source of predation could be determined, hares were killed more often by goshawks (Accipiter gentilis than other predators in early successional forest (30%, and more often by lynx (Lynx canadensis than other predators in black spruce forest (31%. Great horned owls (Bubo virginianus and coyotes (Canis latrans represented smaller proportions of hare predation, and non-predatory causes were a minor source (3% of mortality. Because hares rely on vegetative cover for concealment from predators, we measured cover in predation sites and habitats that the hares occupied and concluded that habitat type had a

  3. The Effects of Predator Evolution and Genetic Variation on Predator-Prey Population-Level Dynamics.

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    Cortez, Michael H; Patel, Swati

    2017-07-01

    This paper explores how predator evolution and the magnitude of predator genetic variation alter the population-level dynamics of predator-prey systems. We do this by analyzing a general eco-evolutionary predator-prey model using four methods: Method 1 identifies how eco-evolutionary feedbacks alter system stability in the fast and slow evolution limits; Method 2 identifies how the amount of standing predator genetic variation alters system stability; Method 3 identifies how the phase lags in predator-prey cycles depend on the amount of genetic variation; and Method 4 determines conditions for different cycle shapes in the fast and slow evolution limits using geometric singular perturbation theory. With these four methods, we identify the conditions under which predator evolution alters system stability and shapes of predator-prey cycles, and how those effect depend on the amount of genetic variation in the predator population. We discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each method and the relations between the four methods. This work shows how the four methods can be used in tandem to make general predictions about eco-evolutionary dynamics and feedbacks.

  4. Factors influencing the predation rates of Anisops breddini (Hemiptera: Notonectidae feeding on mosquito larvae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Weterings

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Notonectidae are a family of water bugs that are known to be important predators of mosquito larvae and have great potential in the biological control of vector mosquitoes. An experiment was conducted to assess mosquito larvae predation by Anisops breddini, a species common to Southeast Asia. The predation rates were recorded in context of prey density, predator density, predator size and prey type. Predation rates were strongly affected by prey type and less by prey density and predator density. They ranged between 1.2 prey items per day for pupae of Aedes aegeypti and Armigeres moultoni to 5.9 for Ae. aegypti larvae. Compared with studies on other Notonectidae species, the predation rates appear low, which is probably caused by the relative small size of the specimens used in this study. An. breddini is very common in the region and often found in urban areas; therefore, the species has potential as a biological control agent.

  5. Depredation of the California Ridgway’s rail: Causes and distribution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casazza, Michael L.; Overton, Cory T.; Bui, Thuy-Vy D.; Takekawa, John Y.; Merritt, Angela M.; Hull, J.M.

    2016-01-01

    We studied the causes of mortality for the California Ridgway’s rail at multiple tidal marshes in the San Francisco Bay Estuary, California. We radio-marked 196 individual rails and examined the evidence from 152 recovered California Ridgway’s rail mortalities from our radio-marked sample and determined plausible cause of death from a wide array of evidence. We also included 10 additional California Ridgway’s rail mortalities (unmarked) that we encountered during our normal field operations. We assigned a likely cause of death to 130 of the recoveries, of which 127 were determined to be caused by predation. Of those, 103 could be divided into class of cause (avian or mammalian), and avian predators were responsible for 64% of those events. Primary predators identified include domestic or feral cats, red fox, owl, and northern harrier. We did find seasonal differences between avian and mammalian predation rates, with higher proportions of avian predation in the winter and early spring. Time of day and tide height

  6. Interactions of bullfrog tadpole predators and an insecticide: Predation release and facilitation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boone, M.D.; Semlitsch, R.D.

    2003-01-01

    The effect of a contaminant on a community may not be easily predicted, given that complex changes in food resources and predator-prey dynamics may result. The objectives of our study were to determine the interactive effects of the insecticide carbaryl and predators on body size, development, survival, and activity of tadpoles of the bullfrog (Rana catesbeiana). We conducted the study in cattle tank mesocosm ponds exposed to 0, 3.5, or 7.0 mg/l carbaryl, and no predators or two red-spotted newts (Notophthalmus viridescens), bluegill sunfish (Lepomis macrochirus), or crayfish (Orconectes sp.). Carbaryl negatively affected predator survival by eliminating crayfish from all ponds, and by eliminating bluegill sunfish from ponds exposed to the highest concentration of carbaryl; carbaryl exposure did not effect survival of red-spotted newts. Because crayfish were eliminated by carbaryl, bullfrogs were released from predation and survival was near that of predator controls at low concentrations of carbaryl exposure. High concentrations of carbaryl reduced tadpole survival regardless of whether predators survived carbaryl exposure or not. Presence of crayfish and newts reduced tadpole survival, while bluegill sunfish appeared to facilitate bullfrog tadpole survival. Presence of carbaryl stimulated bullfrog tadpole mass and development. Our study demonstrates that the presence of a contaminant stress can alter community regulation by releasing prey from predators that are vulnerable to contaminants in some exposure scenarios.

  7. Predators control post-fledging mortality in tawny owls, Strix aluco

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sunde, Peter

    2005-01-01

    , primarily due to predation from raptors and mammals (predominantly foxes Vulpes vulpes). Predation by mammals occurred within the first few days after fledging, with young leaving the nest at an early age being at particularly high risk. Young that had received extra food as nestlings were also at higher...... risk of being preyed upon by mammals, possibly because they were easier to locate on their smell. Total mortality risk (control broods) increased with fledging date from 14% in April to >58% in June due to an increasing raptor predation risk. Individual attributes such as sex, condition......, immunocompetence or prevalence of blood parasites did not predict total or cause-specific mortality risk. Survival during the post-fledging dependency period was therefore primarily a function of variation in predation pressures, particularly from raptors. Increasing raptor predation of late broods appears...

  8. Predator mediated selection and the impact of developmental stage on viability in wood frog tadpoles (Rana sylvatica

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    Calsbeek Ryan

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Complex life histories require adaptation of a single organism for multiple ecological niches. Transitions between life stages, however, may expose individuals to an increased risk of mortality, as the process of metamorphosis typically includes developmental stages that function relatively poorly in both the pre- and post-metamorphic habitat. We studied predator-mediated selection on tadpoles of the wood frog, Rana sylvatica, to identify this hypothesized period of differential predation risk and estimate its ontogenetic onset. We reared tadpoles in replicated mesocosms in the presence of the larval odonate Anax junius, a known tadpole predator. Results The probability of tadpole survival increased with increasing age and size, but declined steeply at the point in development where hind limbs began to erupt from the body wall. Selection gradient analyses indicate that natural selection favored tadpoles with short, deep tail fins. Tadpoles resorb their tails as they progress toward metamorphosis, which may have led to the observed decrease in survivorship. Path models revealed that selection acted directly on tail morphology, rather than through its indirect influence on swimming performance. Conclusions This is consistent with the hypothesis that tail morphology influences predation rates by reducing the probability a predator strikes the head or body.

  9. Lethal and behavioral effects of pesticides on the insect predator Macrolophus pygmaeus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinou, A F; Seraphides, N; Stavrinides, M C

    2014-02-01

    Macrolophus pygmaeus (Hemiptera: Miridae) is a common generalist predator in Mediterranean agro-ecosystems. We evaluated the lethal effects of six insecticides and a fungicide on M. pygmaeus nymphs exposed to the pesticides through three routes of exposure: direct, residual and oral. Chlorantraniliprole and emamectin-benzoate caused less than 25% mortality to M. pygmaeus and were classified as harmless according to the International Organization for Biological Control rating scheme. In contrast, thiacloprid and metaflumizone caused 100% and 80% mortality, respectively, and were classified as harmful. Indoxacarb and spinosad resulted in close to 30% mortality to the predator, and were classified as slightly harmful, while the fungicide copper hydroxide caused 58% mortality and was rated as moderately harmful. Chlorantraniliprole and thiacloprid were selected for further sublethal testing by exposing M. pygmaeus to two routes of pesticide intake: pesticide residues and feeding on sprayed food. Thiacloprid led to an increase in resting and preening time of the predator, and a decrease in plant feeding. Chlorantraniliprole resulted in a decrease in plant feeding, but no other behaviors were affected. In addition, thiacloprid significantly reduced the predation rate of M. pygmaeus, whereas chlorantraniliprole had no significant effect on predation rate. The results of the study suggest that thiacloprid is not compatible with M. pygmaeus, while further research needs to be carried out for metaflumizone and copper hydroxide. All other products seem to be relatively compatible with M. pygmaeus, though studies on their sublethal effects will shed more light into their safety. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Can variation in risk of nest predation explain altitudinal migration in tropical birds?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyle, W Alice

    2008-03-01

    Migration is among the best studied of animal behaviors, yet few empirical studies have tested hypotheses explaining the ultimate causes of these cyclical annual movements. Fretwell's (1980) hypothesis predicts that if nest predation explains why many tropical birds migrate uphill to breed, then predation risk must be negatively associated with elevation. Data from 385 artificial nests spanning 2,740 m of elevation on the Atlantic slope of Costa Rica show an overall decline in predation with increasing elevation. However, nest predation risk was highest at intermediate elevations (500-650 m), not at lowest elevations. The proportion of nests depredated by different types of predators differed among elevations. These results imply that over half of the altitudinal migrant bird species in this region migrate to safer breeding areas than their non-breeding areas, suggesting that variation in nest predation risk could be an important benefit of uphill migrations of many species.

  11. Predation and caribou populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dale R. Seip

    1991-10-01

    Full Text Available Predation, especially wolf (Canis lupus predation, limits many North American caribou (Rangifer tarandus populations below the density that food resources could sustain. The impact of predation depends on the parameters for the functional and numerical response of the wolves, relative to the potential annual increment of the caribou population. Differences in predator-avoidance strategies largely explain the major differences in caribou densities that occur naturally in North America. Caribou migrations that spatially separate caribou from wolves allow relatively high densities of caribou to survive. Non-migratory caribou that live in areas where wolf populations are sustained by alternate prey can be eliminated by wolf predation.

  12. 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

  13. Laying the foundations for a human-predator conflict solution: assessing the impact of Bonelli's eagle on rabbits and partridges.

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    Marcos Moleón

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Predation may potentially lead to negative effects on both prey (directly via predators and predators (indirectly via human persecution. Predation pressure studies are, therefore, of major interest in the fields of theoretical knowledge and conservation of prey or predator species, with wide ramifications and profound implications in human-wildlife conflicts. However, detailed works on this issue in highly valuable--in conservation terms--Mediterranean ecosystems are virtually absent. This paper explores the predator-hunting conflict by examining a paradigmatic, Mediterranean-wide (endangered predator-two prey (small game system. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We estimated the predation impact ('kill rate' and 'predation rate', i.e., number of prey and proportion of the prey population eaten, respectively of Bonelli's eagle Aquila fasciata on rabbit Oryctolagus cuniculus and red-legged partridge Alectoris rufa populations in two seasons (the eagle's breeding and non-breeding periods, 100 days each in SE Spain. The mean estimated kill rate by the seven eagle reproductive units in the study area was c. 304 rabbits and c. 262 partridges in the breeding season, and c. 237 rabbits and c. 121 partridges in the non-breeding period. This resulted in very low predation rates (range: 0.3-2.5% for both prey and seasons. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The potential role of Bonelli's eagles as a limiting factor for rabbits and partridges at the population scale was very poor. The conflict between game profitability and conservation interest of either prey or predators is apparently very localised, and eagles, quarry species and game interests seem compatible in most of the study area. Currently, both the persecution and negative perception of Bonelli's eagle (the 'partridge-eating eagle' in Spanish have a null theoretical basis in most of this area.

  14. Laying the Foundations for a Human-Predator Conflict Solution: Assessing the Impact of Bonelli's Eagle on Rabbits and Partridges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moleón, Marcos; Sánchez-Zapata, José A.; Gil-Sánchez, José M.; Barea-Azcón, José M.; Ballesteros-Duperón, Elena; Virgós, Emilio

    2011-01-01

    Background Predation may potentially lead to negative effects on both prey (directly via predators) and predators (indirectly via human persecution). Predation pressure studies are, therefore, of major interest in the fields of theoretical knowledge and conservation of prey or predator species, with wide ramifications and profound implications in human-wildlife conflicts. However, detailed works on this issue in highly valuable –in conservation terms– Mediterranean ecosystems are virtually absent. This paper explores the predator-hunting conflict by examining a paradigmatic, Mediterranean-wide (endangered) predator-two prey (small game) system. Methodology/Principal Findings We estimated the predation impact (‘kill rate’ and ‘predation rate’, i.e., number of prey and proportion of the prey population eaten, respectively) of Bonelli's eagle Aquila fasciata on rabbit Oryctolagus cuniculus and red-legged partridge Alectoris rufa populations in two seasons (the eagle's breeding and non-breeding periods, 100 days each) in SE Spain. The mean estimated kill rate by the seven eagle reproductive units in the study area was c. 304 rabbits and c. 262 partridges in the breeding season, and c. 237 rabbits and c. 121 partridges in the non-breeding period. This resulted in very low predation rates (range: 0.3–2.5%) for both prey and seasons. Conclusions/Significance The potential role of Bonelli's eagles as a limiting factor for rabbits and partridges at the population scale was very poor. The conflict between game profitability and conservation interest of either prey or predators is apparently very localised, and eagles, quarry species and game interests seem compatible in most of the study area. Currently, both the persecution and negative perception of Bonelli's eagle (the ‘partridge-eating eagle’ in Spanish) have a null theoretical basis in most of this area. PMID:21818399

  15. Tadpoles balance foraging and predator avoidance: Effects of predation, pond drying, and hunger

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bridges, C.M.

    2002-01-01

    Organisms are predicted to make trade-offs when foraging and predator avoidance behaviors present conflicting demands. Balancing conflicting demands is important to larval amphibians because adult fitness can be strongly influenced by size at metamorphosis and duration of the larval period. Larvae in temporary ponds must maximize growth within a short time period to achieve metamorphosis before ponds dry, while simultaneously avoiding predators. To determine whether tadpoles trade off between conflicting demands, I examined tadpole (Pseudacris triseriata) activity and microhabitat use in the presence of red-spotted newts (Notopthalmus viridescens) under varying conditions of pond drying and hunger. Tadpoles significantly decreased activity and increased refuge use when predators were present. The proportion of active time tadpoles spent feeding was significantly greater in predator treatments, suggesting tadpoles adaptively balance the conflicting demands of foraging and predator avoidance without making apparent trade-offs. Tadpoles responded to simulated drying conditions by accelerating development. Pond drying did not modify microhabitat use or activity in the presence of predators, suggesting tadpoles perceived predation and hunger as greater immediate threats than desiccation, and did not take more risks.

  16. Juvenile exposure to predator cues induces a larger egg size in fish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Segers, Francisca H. I. D.; Taborsky, Barbara

    2012-01-01

    When females anticipate a hazardous environment for their offspring, they can increase offspring survival by producing larger young. Early environmental experience determines egg size in different animal taxa. We predicted that a higher perceived predation risk by juveniles would cause an increase in the sizes of eggs that they produce as adults. To test this, we exposed juveniles of the mouthbrooding cichlid Eretmodus cyanostictus in a split-brood experiment either to cues of a natural predator or to a control situation. After maturation, females that had been confronted with predators produced heavier eggs, whereas clutch size itself was not affected by the treatment. This effect cannot be explained by a differential female body size because the predator treatment did not influence growth trajectories. The observed increase of egg mass is likely to be adaptive, as heavier eggs gave rise to larger young and in fish, juvenile predation risk drops sharply with increasing body size. This study provides the first evidence that predator cues perceived by females early in life positively affect egg mass, suggesting that these cues allow her to predict the predation risk for her offspring. PMID:21976689

  17. 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.

  18. Recovery in eastern Baltic cod: is increased recruitment caused by decreased predation on early life stages?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Neumann, Viola; Köster, Fritz; Schaber, M.

    2014-01-01

    Cod (Gadus morhua) recruitment in the eastern Baltic Sea is influenced by predation on early life stages by sprat (Sprattus sprattus) and herring (Clupea harengus), which is considered as one of the mechanisms preventing cod recovery in the 1990s. In the light of improved cod recruitment...... in the second half of the 2000s, new analyses of stomach content of sprat and herring were conducted, to elucidate the contribution of changes in predation pressure on cod recruitment. Comparison of stomach contents of sprat and herring in 2004–2008 with data from the 1990s showed a similar diet composition...

  19. Outrun or Outmaneuver: Predator-Prey Interactions as a Model System for Integrating Biomechanical Studies in a Broader Ecological and Evolutionary Context.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Talia Y; Biewener, Andrew A

    2015-12-01

    Behavioral studies performed in natural habitats provide a context for the development of hypotheses and the design of experiments relevant both to biomechanics and to evolution. In particular, predator-prey interactions are a model system for integrative study because success or failure of predation has a direct effect on fitness and drives the evolution of specialized performance in both predator and prey. Although all predators share the goal of capturing prey, and all prey share the goal of survival, the behavior of predators and prey are diverse in nature. This article presents studies of some predator-prey interactions sharing common predation strategies that reveal general principles governing the behaviors of predator and prey, even in distantly related taxa. Studies of predator-prey interactions also reveal that maximal performance observed in a laboratory setting is not necessarily the performance that determines fitness. Thus, considering locomotion in the context of predation ecology can aid in evolutionarily relevant experimental design. Classification by strategy reveals that displaying unpredictable trajectories is a relevant anti-predator behavior in response to multiple predation strategies. A predator's perception and pursuit of prey can be affected indirectly by divergent locomotion of similar animals that share an ecosystem. Variation in speed and direction of locomotion that directly increases the unpredictability of a prey's trajectory can be increased through genetic mutation that affects locomotor patterns, musculoskeletal changes that affect maneuverability, and physical interactions between an animal and the environment. By considering the interconnectedness of ecology, physical constraints, and the evolutionary history of behavior, studies in biomechanics can be designed to inform each of these fields. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology. All rights

  20. Predator avoidance in extremophile fish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bierbach, David; Schulte, Matthias; Herrmann, Nina; Zimmer, Claudia; Arias-Rodriguez, Lenin; Indy, Jeane Rimber; Riesch, Rüdiger; Plath, Martin

    2013-02-06

    Extreme habitats are often characterized by reduced predation pressures, thus representing refuges for the inhabiting species. The present study was designed to investigate predator avoidance of extremophile populations of Poecilia mexicana and P. sulphuraria that either live in hydrogen sulfide-rich (sulfidic) springs or cave habitats, both of which are known to have impoverished piscine predator regimes. Focal fishes that inhabited sulfidic springs showed slightly weaker avoidance reactions when presented with several naturally occurring predatory cichlids, but strongest differences to populations from non-sulfidic habitats were found in a decreased shoaling tendency with non-predatory swordtail (Xiphophorus hellerii) females. When comparing avoidance reactions between P. mexicana from a sulfidic cave (Cueva del Azufre) and the adjacent sulfidic surface creek (El Azufre), we found only slight differences in predator avoidance, but surface fish reacted much more strongly to the non-predatory cichlid Vieja bifasciata. Our third experiment was designed to disentangle learned from innate effects of predator recognition. We compared laboratory-reared (i.e., predator-naïve) and wild-caught (i.e., predator-experienced) individuals of P. mexicana from a non-sulfidic river and found no differences in their reaction towards the presented predators. Overall, our results indicate (1) that predator avoidance is still functional in extremophile Poecilia spp. and (2) that predator recognition and avoidance reactions have a strong genetic basis.

  1. Predator Avoidance in Extremophile Fish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bierbach, David; Schulte, Matthias; Herrmann, Nina; Zimmer, Claudia; Arias-Rodriguez, Lenin; Indy, Jeane Rimber; Riesch, Rüdiger; Plath, Martin

    2013-01-01

    Extreme habitats are often characterized by reduced predation pressures, thus representing refuges for the inhabiting species. The present study was designed to investigate predator avoidance of extremophile populations of Poecilia mexicana and P. sulphuraria that either live in hydrogen sulfide-rich (sulfidic) springs or cave habitats, both of which are known to have impoverished piscine predator regimes. Focal fishes that inhabited sulfidic springs showed slightly weaker avoidance reactions when presented with several naturally occurring predatory cichlids, but strongest differences to populations from non-sulfidic habitats were found in a decreased shoaling tendency with non-predatory swordtail (Xiphophorus hellerii) females. When comparing avoidance reactions between P. mexicana from a sulfidic cave (Cueva del Azufre) and the adjacent sulfidic surface creek (El Azufre), we found only slight differences in predator avoidance, but surface fish reacted much more strongly to the non-predatory cichlid Vieja bifasciata. Our third experiment was designed to disentangle learned from innate effects of predator recognition. We compared laboratory-reared (i.e., predator-naïve) and wild-caught (i.e., predator-experienced) individuals of P. mexicana from a non-sulfidic river and found no differences in their reaction towards the presented predators. Overall, our results indicate (1) that predator avoidance is still functional in extremophile Poecilia spp. and (2) that predator recognition and avoidance reactions have a strong genetic basis. PMID:25371337

  2. A test of the predator satiation hypothesis, acorn predator size, and acorn preference

    Science.gov (United States)

    C.H. Greenberg; S.J. Zarnoch

    2018-01-01

    Mast seeding is hypothesized to satiate seed predators with heavy production and reduce populations with crop failure, thereby increasing seed survival. Preference for red or white oak acorns could influence recruitment among oak species. We tested the predator satiation hypothesis, acorn preference, and predator size by concurrently...

  3. Differential impacts of six insecticides on a mealybug and its coccinellid predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barbosa, Paulo R R; Oliveira, Martin D; Barros, Eduardo M; Michaud, J P; Torres, Jorge B

    2018-01-01

    Broad-spectrum insecticides may disrupt biological control and cause pest resurgence due to their negative impacts on natural enemies. The preservation of sustainable pest control in agroecosystems requires parallel assessments of insecticide toxicity to target pests and their key natural enemies. In the present study, the leaf dipping method was used to evaluate the relative toxicity of six insecticides to the striped mealybug, Ferrisia dasylirii (Cockerell) (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae) and its predator, Tenuisvalvae notata (Mulsant) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae). Three neurotoxic insecticides, lambda-cyhalothrin, methidathion and thiamethoxam, caused complete mortality of both pest and predator when applied at their highest field rates. In contrast, lufenuron, pymetrozine and pyriproxyfen caused moderate mortality of third-instar mealybug nymphs, and exhibited low or no toxicity to either larvae or adults of the lady beetle. At field rates, lufenuron and pymetrozine had negligible effects on prey consumption, development or reproduction of T. notata, but adults failed to emerge from pupae when fourth instar larvae were exposed to pyriproxyfen. In addition, pyriproxyfen caused temporary sterility; T. notata females laid non-viable eggs for three days after exposure, but recovered egg fertility thereafter. Our results indicate that the three neurotoxic insecticides can potentially control F. dasylirii, but are hazardous to its natural predator. In contrast, lufenuron and pymetrozine appear compatible with T. notata, although they appear less effective against the mealybug. Although the acute toxicity of pyriproxyfen to T. notata was low, some pupal mortality and reduced egg fertility suggest that this material could impede the predator's numerical response to mealybug populations. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Impact of marine reserve on maximum sustainable yield in a traditional prey-predator system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paul, Prosenjit; Kar, T. K.; Ghorai, Abhijit

    2018-01-01

    Multispecies fisheries management requires managers to consider the impact of fishing activities on several species as fishing impacts both targeted and non-targeted species directly or indirectly in several ways. The intended goal of traditional fisheries management is to achieve maximum sustainable yield (MSY) from the targeted species, which on many occasions affect the targeted species as well as the entire ecosystem. Marine reserves are often acclaimed as the marine ecosystem management tool. Few attempts have been made to generalize the ecological effects of marine reserve on MSY policy. We examine here how MSY and population level in a prey-predator system are affected by the low, medium and high reserve size under different possible scenarios. Our simulation works shows that low reserve area, the value of MSY for prey exploitation is maximum when both prey and predator species have fast movement rate. For medium reserve size, our analysis revealed that the maximum value of MSY for prey exploitation is obtained when prey population has fast movement rate and predator population has slow movement rate. For high reserve area, the maximum value of MSY for prey's exploitation is very low compared to the maximum value of MSY for prey's exploitation in case of low and medium reserve. On the other hand, for low and medium reserve area, MSY for predator exploitation is maximum when both the species have fast movement rate.

  5. Predation vulnerability of planktonic copepods: consequences of predator foraging strategies and prey sensory abilities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Viitasalo, M; Kiørboe, T; Flinkman, J.

    1998-01-01

    We investigated the vulnerability of 2 copepod species (Eurytemora affinis and Temora longicornis) to predation by predators with different foraging modes, three-spined stickleback Gasterosteus aculeatus juveniles and mysid shrimps Neomysis integer. Copepods were videofilmed escaping from predators...

  6. Understanding predation: implications toward forest management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harvey R. Smith

    1991-01-01

    It is generally accepted that when gypsy moths rest in the litter survival is low due to predation by ground-foraging generalist predators and that predation can maintain these populations indefinitely. Forest Service research on predators of gypsy moth continues to focus on population dynamics, the mechanisms of predation and forest management implications.

  7. 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.

  8. Predation rates, timing, and predator composition for Scoters (Melanitta spp.) in marine habitats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Eric J.; Esler, Daniel N.; Sean, Boyd W.; Evenson, Joseph; Nysewander, David R.; Ward, David H.; Dickson, Rian D.; Uher-Koch, Brian D.; Vanstratt, C.S.; Hupp, Jerry

    2012-01-01

    Studies of declining populations of sea ducks have focused mainly on bottom-up processes with little emphasis on the role of predation. We identified 11 potential predators of White-winged Scoters (Melanitta fusca (L., 1758)) and Surf Scoters (Melanitta perspicillata (L., 1758)) in North American marine habitats. However, of 596 Scoters marked with VHF transmitters along the Pacific coast, mortalities were recovered in association with just two identifiable categories of predators: in southeast Alaska recoveries occurred mainly near mustelid feeding areas, while those in southern British Columbia and Washington occurred mainly near feeding areas of Bald Eagles (Haliaeetus leucocephalus (L., 1766)). Determining whether marked Scoters had been depredated versus scavenged was often not possible, but mortalities occurred more frequently during winter than during wing molt (13.1% versus 0.7% of both species combined, excluding Scoters that died within a postrelease adjustment period). In two sites heavily used by Scoters, diurnal observations revealed no predation attempts and low rates of predator disturbances that altered Scoter behavior (≤ 0.22/h). These and other results suggest that predation by Bald Eagles occurs mainly at sites and times where densities of Scoters are low, while most predation by mustelids probably occurs when Scoters are energetically compromised.

  9. A predator-prey system with stage-structure for predator and nonlocal delay

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lin, Z.G.; Pedersen, Michael; Zhang, Lai

    2010-01-01

    This paper deals with the behavior of solutions to the reaction-diffusion system under homogeneous Neumann boundary condition, which describes a prey-predator model with nonlocal delay. Sufficient conditions for the global stability of each equilibrium are derived by the Lyapunov functional...... and the results show that the introduction of stage-structure into predator positively affects the coexistence of prey and predator. Numerical simulations are performed to illustrate the results....

  10. Risky business for a juvenile marine predator? Testing the influence of foraging strategies on size and growth rate under natural conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hussey, Nigel E; DiBattista, Joseph D; Moore, Jonathan W; Ward, Eric J; Fisk, Aaron T; Kessel, Steven; Guttridge, Tristan L; Feldheim, Kevin A; Franks, Bryan R; Gruber, Samuel H; Weideli, Ornella C; Chapman, Demian D

    2017-04-12

    Mechanisms driving selection of body size and growth rate in wild marine vertebrates are poorly understood, thus limiting knowledge of their fitness costs at ecological, physiological and genetic scales. Here, we indirectly tested whether selection for size-related traits of juvenile sharks that inhabit a nursery hosting two dichotomous habitats, protected mangroves (low predation risk) and exposed seagrass beds (high predation risk), is influenced by their foraging behaviour. Juvenile sharks displayed a continuum of foraging strategies between mangrove and seagrass areas, with some individuals preferentially feeding in one habitat over another. Foraging habitat was correlated with growth rate, whereby slower growing, smaller individuals fed predominantly in sheltered mangroves, whereas larger, faster growing animals fed over exposed seagrass. Concomitantly, tracked juveniles undertook variable movement behaviours across both the low and high predation risk habitat. These data provide supporting evidence for the hypothesis that directional selection favouring smaller size and slower growth rate, both heritable traits in this shark population, may be driven by variability in foraging behaviour and predation risk. Such evolutionary pathways may be critical to adaptation within predator-driven marine ecosystems. © 2017 The Author(s).

  11. Older mothers follow conservative strategies under predator pressure: the adaptive role of maternal glucocorticoids in yellow-bellied marmots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monclús, Raquel; Tiulim, Justin; Blumstein, Daniel T

    2011-11-01

    When the maternal environment is a good predictor of the offspring environment, maternal glucocorticoid (GC) levels might serve to pre-program offspring to express certain phenotypes or life-history characteristics that will increase their fitness. We conducted a field study to assess the effects of naturally occurring maternal GC levels on their offspring in yellow-bellied marmots (Marmota flaviventris) subjected to different predator pressures. Maternal fecal corticosteroid metabolites (FCM) were positively correlated with predator pressure. Predators had both direct and indirect effects on pups. We found that older mothers with higher FCM levels had smaller and female-biased litters. Moreover, sons from older mothers with high FCM levels dispersed significantly more than those from older mothers with low FCM levels, whereas the opposite pattern was found in pups from younger mothers. These age-related effects may permit females to make adaptive decisions that increase their pups' fitness according to their current situation. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. 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.

  13. Dual-guild herbivory disrupts predator-prey interactions in the field.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blubaugh, Carmen K; Asplund, Jacob S; Eigenbrode, Sanford D; Morra, Matthew J; Philips, Christopher R; Popova, Inna E; Reganold, John P; Snyder, William E

    2018-05-01

    Plant defenses often mediate whether competing chewing and sucking herbivores indirectly benefit or harm one another. Dual-guild herbivory also can muddle plant signals used by specialist natural enemies to locate prey, further complicating the net impact of herbivore-herbivore interactions in naturally diverse settings. While dual-guild herbivore communities are common in nature, consequences for top-down processes are unclear, as chemically mediated tri-trophic interactions are rarely evaluated in field environments. Combining observational and experimental approaches in the open field, we test a prediction that chewing herbivores interfere with top-down suppression of phloem feeders on Brassica oleracea across broad landscapes. In a two-year survey of 52 working farm sites, we found that parasitoid and aphid densities on broccoli plants positively correlated at farms where aphids and caterpillars rarely co-occurred, but this relationship disappeared at farms where caterpillars commonly co-occurred. In a follow-up experiment, we compared single and dual-guild herbivore communities at four local farm sites and found that caterpillars (P. rapae) caused a 30% reduction in aphid parasitism (primarily by Diaeretiella rapae), and increased aphid colony (Brevicoryne brassicae) growth at some sites. Notably, in the absence of predators, caterpillars indirectly suppressed, rather than enhanced, aphid growth. Amid considerable ecological noise, our study reveals a pattern of apparent commensalism: herbivore-herbivore facilitation via relaxed top-down suppression. This work suggests that enemy-mediated apparent commensalism may override constraints to growth induced by competing herbivores in field environments, and emphasizes the value of placing chemically mediated interactions within their broader environmental and community contexts. © 2018 by the Ecological Society of America.

  14. 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...

  15. Enhanced susceptibility to predation in corals of compromised condition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bright, Allan J; Cameron, Caitlin M; Miller, Margaret W

    2015-01-01

    The marine gastropod, Coralliophila abbreviata, is an obligate corallivore that causes substantial mortality in Caribbean Acropora spp. Considering the imperiled status of Acropora cervicornis and A. palmata, a better understanding of ecological interactions resulting in tissue loss may enable more effective conservation strategies. We examined differences in susceptibility of A. cervicornis to C. abbreviata predation based on coral tissue condition. Coral tissue condition was a strong determinant of snail prey choice, with snails preferring A. cervicornis fragments that were diseased or mechanically damaged over healthy fragments. In addition, snails always chose fragments undergoing active predation by another snail, while showing no preference for a non-feeding snail when compared with an undisturbed prey fragment. These results indicate that the condition of A. cervicornis prey influenced foraging behavior of C. abbreviata, creating a potential feedback that may exacerbate damage from predation in coral populations compromised by other types of disturbance.

  16. Adaptive behaviour and multiple equilibrium states in a predator-prey model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pimenov, Alexander; Kelly, Thomas C; Korobeinikov, Andrei; O'Callaghan, Michael J A; Rachinskii, Dmitrii

    2015-05-01

    There is evidence that multiple stable equilibrium states are possible in real-life ecological systems. Phenomenological mathematical models which exhibit such properties can be constructed rather straightforwardly. For instance, for a predator-prey system this result can be achieved through the use of non-monotonic functional response for the predator. However, while formal formulation of such a model is not a problem, the biological justification for such functional responses and models is usually inconclusive. In this note, we explore a conjecture that a multitude of equilibrium states can be caused by an adaptation of animal behaviour to changes of environmental conditions. In order to verify this hypothesis, we consider a simple predator-prey model, which is a straightforward extension of the classic Lotka-Volterra predator-prey model. In this model, we made an intuitively transparent assumption that the prey can change a mode of behaviour in response to the pressure of predation, choosing either "safe" of "risky" (or "business as usual") behaviour. In order to avoid a situation where one of the modes gives an absolute advantage, we introduce the concept of the "cost of a policy" into the model. A simple conceptual two-dimensional predator-prey model, which is minimal with this property, and is not relying on odd functional responses, higher dimensionality or behaviour change for the predator, exhibits two stable co-existing equilibrium states with basins of attraction separated by a separatrix of a saddle point. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. 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

  18. Deer mouse predation on the biological control agent, Urophora spp., introduced to control spotted knapweed

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dean Pearson

    1999-01-01

    Field observations made in 1993 suggested that rodents were preying on spotted knapweed (Centaurea maculosa) seedheads, possibly targeting the gall fly larvae (Urophora spp.) which overwinter within them. I conducted a brief study to determine the cause of seedhead predation and quantify gall fly predation. Stomachs were examined...

  19. Development of a systemwide predator control program: Stepwise implementation of a predation index, predator control fisheries, and evaluation plan in the Columbia River Basin. Section 1: Implementation. Annual report 1994

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Willis, C.F.; Young, F.R.

    1995-09-01

    The authors report the results from the forth year of a basinwide program to harvest northern squawfish (Ptychocheilus oregonensis) in an effort to reduce mortality due to northern squawfish predation on juvenile salmonids during their emigration from natal streams to the ocean. Earlier work in the Columbia River Basin suggested predation by northern squawfish on juvenile salmonids may account for most of the 10--20% mortality juvenile salmonids experience in each of eight Columbia and Snake River reservoirs. Modeling simulations based on work in John Day Reservoir from 1982 through 1988 indicated it is not necessary to eradicate northern squawfish to substantially reduce predation-caused mortality of juvenile salmonids. Instead, if northern squawfish were exploited at a 10--20% rate, reductions in numbers of larger, older fish resulting in restructuring of their population could reduce their predation on juvenile salmonids by 50% or more. Consequently, the authors designed and tested a sport-reward angling fishery and a commercial longline fishery in the John Day pool in 1990. They also conducted an angling fishery in areas inaccessible to the public at four dams on the mainstem Columbia River and at Ice Harbor Dam on the Snake River. Based on the success of these limited efforts, they implemented three test fisheries on a multi-pool, or systemwide, scale in 1991--a tribal longline fishery above Bonneville Dam, a sport-reward fishery, and a dam-angling fishery

  20. Nest Predation Deviates from Nest Predator Abundance in an Ecologically Trapped Bird

    OpenAIRE

    Hollander, Franck A.; Van Dyck, Hans; San Martin, Gilles; Titeux, Nicolas

    2015-01-01

    In human-modified environments, ecological traps may result from a preference for low-quality habitat where survival or reproductive success is lower than in high-quality habitat. It has often been shown that low reproductive success for birds in preferred habitat types was due to higher nest predator abundance. However, between-habitat differences in nest predation may only weakly correlate with differences in nest predator abundance. An ecological trap is at work in a farmland bird (Lanius ...

  1. Predation of Five Generalist Predators on Brown Planthopper (Nilaparvata lugens Stål

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sri Karindah

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Two generalist predators of brown planthopper,Metioche vittaticollis and Anaxipha longipennis (Gryllidae have not been much studied in Indonesia. This research was conducted to study and compare the predatory ability of M. vittaticollis, A. longipennis (Gryllidae and three coleopterans, Paederus fuscipes (Staphylinidae, Ophionea sp. (Carabidae,and Micraspis sp. (Coccinellidae against brown planthopper (fourth and fifth instars under laboratory condition. In total, 20 nymphs of N. lugens were exposed for 2 hour to each predator for 5 consecutive days. Prey consumptions by the predatory crickets, M. vittaticollis and A. longipennis were greater than the other predators and followed by A. longipennis, Micraspis sp., P. fuscipes, and Ophionea sp. respectively. Consumption rates of M. vittaticolis and A. longipenis were also higher than other predators. Micraspis sp was more active on predation in the morning,while M. vittaticollis, A. longipennis, P. fuscipes, and Ophionea sp. were more active both in the morning and the night but not in the afternoon. However, all five species of predators were not so active in preying during the afternoon. In conclusion, a major effort should be extended to conserve these predatory crickets especially M. vittaticollis and A. longipennis.

  2. Landscape forest cover and edge effects on songbird nest predation vary by nest predator

    Science.gov (United States)

    W. Andrew Cox; Frank R. III Thompson; John. Faaborg

    2012-01-01

    Rates of nest predation for birds vary between and within species across multiple spatial scales, but we have a poor understanding of which predators drive such patterns. We video-monitored nests and identified predators at 120 nests of the Acadian Flycatcher (Empidonax virescens) and the Indigo Bunting (Passerina cyanea) at eight...

  3. Winter predation by insectivorous birds and consequences for arthropods and plants in summer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barber, Nicholas A; Wouk, Jennifer

    2012-12-01

    Top-down effects of predators can have important consequences for ecosystems. Insectivorous birds frequently have strong predation effects on herbivores and other arthropods, as well as indirect effects on herbivores' host plants. Diet studies have shown that birds in temperate ecosystems consume arthropods in winter as well as in summer, but experimental studies of bird predation effects have not attempted to quantitatively separate winter predation impacts from those in summer. To understand if winter foraging by insectivorous birds has consequences for arthropods or plants, we performed a meta-analysis of published bird exclusion studies in temperate forest and shrubland habitats. We categorized 85 studies from 41 publications by whether birds were excluded year-round or only in summer, and analyzed arthropod and plant response variables. We also performed a manipulative field experiment in which we used a factorial design to exclude birds from Quercus velutina Lam. saplings in winter and summer, and censused arthropods and herbivore damage in the following growing season. In the meta-analysis, birds had stronger negative effects on herbivores in studies that included winter exclusion, and this effect was not due to study duration. However, this greater predation effect did not translate to a greater impact on plant damage or growth. In the field experiment, winter exclusion did not influence herbivore abundance or their impacts on plants. We have shown that winter feeding by temperate insectivorous birds can have important consequences for insect herbivore populations, but the strength of these effects may vary considerably among ecosystems. A full understanding of the ecological roles of insectivorous birds will require explicit consideration of their foraging in the non-growing season, and we make recommendations for how future studies can address this.

  4. Predator Politics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mary Louisa Cappelli

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Edward Abbey’s Desert Solitaire and Barbara Kingsolver’s Prodigal Summer urges readers to see coyotes as crucial members of the natural community whose predation is essential for the maintenance of biodiversity and ecological stability. Their cultural production provides a human story of ecocritical engagement for understanding the cascading effects of removing top predators from their ecosystems. By envisioning biocentric possibilities within place-based and scientific contexts, Edward Abbey and Barbara Kingsolver share a common theme of political ecology: political processes shape ecological conditions. A close reading of Edward Abbey’s Desert Solitaire and Barbara Kingsolver’s Prodigal Summer provides a literary entryway to connect research, arguments, and discourse across disciplines tasking readers to engage in political discussions of environmental sustainability and to consider viable solutions to preserve the ecological diversity of our predator populations and ecosystems.

  5. Phenotypic plasticity in anti-intraguild predator strategies: mite larvae adjust their behaviours according to vulnerability and predation risk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walzer, Andreas; Schausberger, Peter

    2013-05-01

    Interspecific threat-sensitivity allows prey to maximize the net benefit of antipredator strategies by adjusting the type and intensity of their response to the level of predation risk. This is well documented for classical prey-predator interactions but less so for intraguild predation (IGP). We examined threat-sensitivity in antipredator behaviour of larvae in a predatory mite guild sharing spider mites as prey. The guild consisted of the highly vulnerable intraguild (IG) prey and weak IG predator Phytoseiulus persimilis, the moderately vulnerable IG prey and moderate IG predator Neoseiulus californicus and the little vulnerable IG prey and strong IG predator Amblyseius andersoni. We videotaped the behaviour of the IG prey larvae of the three species in presence of either a low- or a high-risk IG predator female or predator absence and analysed time, distance, path shape and interaction parameters of predators and prey. The least vulnerable IG prey A. andersoni was insensitive to differing IGP risks but the moderately vulnerable IG prey N. californicus and the highly vulnerable IG prey P. persimilis responded in a threat-sensitive manner. Predator presence triggered threat-sensitive behavioural changes in one out of ten measured traits in N. californicus larvae but in four traits in P. persimilis larvae. Low-risk IG predator presence induced a typical escape response in P. persimilis larvae, whereas they reduced their activity in the high-risk IG predator presence. We argue that interspecific threat-sensitivity may promote co-existence of IG predators and IG prey and should be common in predator guilds with long co-evolutionary history.

  6. Parental investment decisions in response to ambient nest-predation risk versus actual predation on the prior nest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chalfoun, A.D.; Martin, T.E.

    2010-01-01

    Theory predicts that parents should invest less in dependent offspring with lower reproductive value, such as those with a high risk of predation. Moreover, high predation risk can favor reduced parental activity when such activity attracts nest predators. Yet, the ability of parents to assess ambient nest-predation risk and respond adaptively remains unclear, especially where nest-predator assemblages are diverse and potentially difficult to assess. We tested whether variation in parental investment by a multi-brooded songbird (Brewer's Sparrow, Spizella breweri) in an environment (sagebrush steppe) with diverse predators was predicted by ambient nest-predation risk or direct experience with nest predation. Variation among eight sites in ambient nest-predation risk, assayed by daily probabilities of nest predation, was largely uncorrelated across four years. In this system risk may therefore be unpredictable, and aspects of parental investment (clutch size, egg mass, incubation rhythms, nestling-feeding rates) were not related to ambient risk. Moreover, investment at first nests that were successful did not differ from that at nests that were depredated, suggesting parents could not assess and respond to territorylevel nest-predation risk. However, parents whose nests were depredated reduced clutch sizes and activity at nests attempted later in the season by increasing the length of incubation shifts (on-bouts) and recesses (off-bouts) and decreasing trips to feed nestlings. In this unpredictable environment parent birds may therefore lack sufficient cues of ambient risk on which to base their investment decisions and instead rely on direct experience with nest predation to inform at least some of their decisions. ?? 2010 The Cooper Ornithological Society.

  7. Behavioral responses associated with a human-mediated predator shelter.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Graeme Shannon

    Full Text Available Human activities in protected areas can affect wildlife populations in a similar manner to predation risk, causing increases in movement and vigilance, shifts in habitat use and changes in group size. Nevertheless, recent evidence indicates that in certain situations ungulate species may actually utilize areas associated with higher levels of human presence as a potential refuge from disturbance-sensitive predators. We now use four-years of behavioral activity budget data collected from pronghorn (Antilocapra americana and elk (Cervus elephus in Grand Teton National Park, USA to test whether predictable patterns of human presence can provide a shelter from predatory risk. Daily behavioral scans were conducted along two parallel sections of road that differed in traffic volume--with the main Teton Park Road experiencing vehicle use that was approximately thirty-fold greater than the River Road. At the busier Teton Park Road, both species of ungulate engaged in higher levels of feeding (27% increase in the proportion of pronghorn feeding and 21% increase for elk, lower levels of alert behavior (18% decrease for pronghorn and 9% decrease for elk and formed smaller groups. These responses are commonly associated with reduced predatory threat. Pronghorn also exhibited a 30% increase in the proportion of individuals moving at the River Road as would be expected under greater exposure to predation risk. Our findings concur with the 'predator shelter hypothesis', suggesting that ungulates in GTNP use human presence as a potential refuge from predation risk, adjusting their behavior accordingly. Human activity has the potential to alter predator-prey interactions and drive trophic-mediated effects that could ultimately impact ecosystem function and biodiversity.

  8. Indirect Effects of Global Change: From Physiological and Behavioral Mechanisms to Ecological Consequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gunderson, Alex R; Tsukimura, Brian; Stillman, Jonathon H

    2017-07-01

    A major focus of current ecological research is to understand how global change makes species vulnerable to extirpation. To date, mechanistic ecophysiological analyses of global change vulnerability have focused primarily on the direct effects of changing abiotic conditions on whole-organism physiological traits, such as metabolic rate, locomotor performance, cardiac function, and critical thermal limits. However, species do not live in isolation within their physical environments, and direct effects of climate change are likely to be compounded by indirect effects that result from altered interactions with other species, such as competitors and predators. The Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology 2017 Symposium "Indirect Effects of Global Change: From Physiological and Behavioral Mechanisms to Ecological Consequences" was designed to synthesize multiple approaches to investigating the indirect effects of global change by bringing together researchers that study the indirect effects of global change from multiple perspectives across habitat, type of anthropogenic change, and level of biological organization. Our goal in bringing together researchers from different backgrounds was to foster cross-disciplinary insights into the mechanistic bases and higher-order ecological consequences of indirect effects of global change, and to promote collaboration among fields. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology. All rights reserved. For permissions please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  9. Threat-sensitive anti-intraguild predation behaviour: maternal strategies to reduce offspring predation risk in mites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walzer, Andreas; Schausberger, Peter

    2011-01-01

    Predation is a major selective force for the evolution of behavioural characteristics of prey. Predation among consumers competing for food is termed intraguild predation (IGP). From the perspective of individual prey, IGP differs from classical predation in the likelihood of occurrence because IG prey is usually more rarely encountered and less profitable because it is more difficult to handle than classical prey. It is not known whether IGP is a sufficiently strong force to evolve interspecific threat sensitivity in antipredation behaviours, as is known from classical predation, and if so whether such behaviours are innate or learned. We examined interspecific threat sensitivity in antipredation in a guild of predatory mite species differing in adaptation to the shared spider mite prey (i.e. Phytoseiulus persimilis, Neoseiulus californicus and Amblyseius andersoni). We first ranked the players in this guild according to the IGP risk posed to each other: A. andersoni was the strongest IG predator; P. persimilis was the weakest. Then, we assessed the influence of relative IGP risk and experience on maternal strategies to reduce offspring IGP risk: A. andersoni was insensitive to IGP risk. Threat sensitivity in oviposition site selection was induced by experience in P. persimilis but occurred independently of experience in N. californicus. Irrespective of experience, P. persimilis laid fewer eggs in choice situations with the high- rather than low-risk IG predator. Our study suggests that, similar to classical predation, IGP may select for sophisticated innate and learned interspecific threat-sensitive antipredation responses. We argue that such responses may promote the coexistence of IG predators and prey.

  10. Predation by coyotes on white-tailed deer neonates in South Carolina

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kilgo, John C.; Ray, H. Scott; Vukovich, Mark; Goode, Matthew J.; Ruth, Charles

    2012-05-07

    Abstract: Coyotes (Canis latrans) are novel predators throughout the southeastern United States and their depredation of white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) neonates may explain observed declines in some deer populations in the region, but direct evidence for such a relationship is lacking. Our objective was to quantify neonate survival rates and causes of mortality at the United States Department of Energy's Savannah River Site (SRS), South Carolina to directly evaluate degree of predation in this deer population. From 2006 to 2009, we radio-monitored 91 neonates captured with the aid of vaginal implant transmitters in pregnant adult females and opportunistic searches. Overall Kaplan Meier survival rate to 16 weeks of age was 0.230 (95% CI = 0.155-0.328), and it varied little among years. Our best-fitting model estimated survival at 0.220 (95% CI = 0.144-0.320). This model included a quadratic time trend variable (lowest survival rate during the first week of life and increasing to near 1.000 around week 10), and Julian date of birth (survival probability declining as date of birth increased). Predation by coyotes was the most frequent cause of death among the 70 monitored neonates that died, definitively accounting for 37% of all mortalities and potentially accounting for as much as 80% when also including probable coyote predation. Predation by bobcats (Felis rufus) accounted for 7% (definitive) to 9% (including probable bobcat predation) of mortalities. The level of coyote-induced mortality we observed is consistent with the low recruitment rates exhibited in the SRS deer population since establishment of coyotes at the site. If representative of recruitment rates across South Carolina, current harvest levels appear unsustainable. This understanding is consistent with the recent declining trend in the statewide deer population. The effects of coyote predation on recruitment should be considered when setting harvest goals, regardless of whether local

  11. Enhanced susceptibility to predation in corals of compromised condition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Allan J. Bright

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The marine gastropod, Coralliophila abbreviata, is an obligate corallivore that causes substantial mortality in Caribbean Acropora spp. Considering the imperiled status of Acropora cervicornis and A. palmata, a better understanding of ecological interactions resulting in tissue loss may enable more effective conservation strategies. We examined differences in susceptibility of A. cervicornis to C. abbreviata predation based on coral tissue condition. Coral tissue condition was a strong determinant of snail prey choice, with snails preferring A. cervicornis fragments that were diseased or mechanically damaged over healthy fragments. In addition, snails always chose fragments undergoing active predation by another snail, while showing no preference for a non-feeding snail when compared with an undisturbed prey fragment. These results indicate that the condition of A. cervicornis prey influenced foraging behavior of C. abbreviata, creating a potential feedback that may exacerbate damage from predation in coral populations compromised by other types of disturbance.

  12. Selective attention in peacocks during predator detection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yorzinski, Jessica L; Platt, Michael L

    2014-05-01

    Predation can exert strong selective pressure on the evolution of behavioral and morphological traits in birds. Because predator avoidance is key to survival and birds rely heavily on visual perception, predation may have shaped avian visual systems as well. To address this question, we examined the role of visual attention in antipredator behavior in peacocks (Pavo cristatus). Peacocks were exposed to a model predator while their gaze was continuously recorded with a telemetric eye-tracker. We found that peacocks spent more time looking at and made more fixations on the predator compared to the same spatial location before the predator was revealed. The duration of fixations they directed toward conspecifics and environmental features decreased after the predator was revealed, indicating that the peacocks were rapidly scanning their environment with their eyes. Maximum eye movement amplitudes and amplitudes of consecutive saccades were similar before and after the predator was revealed. In cases where conspecifics detected the predator first, peacocks appeared to learn that danger was present by observing conspecifics' antipredator behavior. Peacocks were faster to detect the predator when they were fixating closer to the area where the predator would eventually appear. In addition, pupil size increased after predator exposure, consistent with increased physiological arousal. These findings demonstrate that peacocks selectively direct their attention toward predatory threats and suggest that predation has influenced the evolution of visual orienting systems.

  13. Direct and indirect causes of sex differences in mercury concentrations and parasitic infections in a marine bird

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Provencher, J.F.; Gilchrist, H.G.; Mallory, M.L.; Mitchell, G.W.; Forbes, M.R.

    2016-01-01

    In many animal species, males and females differ in their levels of contaminants and/or parasitic infections. Most contaminants and gastro-intestinal parasites are obtained through prey ingestion, and thus the causes of sex differences in the distribution of these factors might follow similar pathways. We studied the northern common eider duck (Somateria molissima borealis) as an avian model, and used directed separation path analysis to explore the causes of sex differences in mercury (Hg) and gastro-intestinal helminths. Two trophically transmitted helminths were examined: a cestode (Lateriporus sp.) and an acanthocephalan (Polymorphus sp). We found that the number of Lateriporus sp. varied positively with stable isotope signature (as indicated by δ"1"5N in eider breast muscle tissue), and negatively with crustaceans being present in the short term diet. We also found that Polymorphus sp. varied positively with eider tissue stable isotope signature. However, Polymorphus sp. varied negatively with sex indirectly through condition and liver mass. Similarly, Hg concentrations also varied negatively with sex indirectly through condition and liver mass, with both Polymorphus sp. intensity and Hg concentrations significantly higher in males. We found that model fit increased when a negative relationship between the two helminth species was included, suggesting a yet unknown causal mechanism linking these parasites. Our findings suggest that although Hg and gastro-intestinal parasites are both trophically transmitted through the eider's prey items, the factors that contribute towards bioaccumulation of these two burdens differ in source, likely caused by several different factors and may potentially influence each other. - Highlights: • Contaminants and parasitic infections often co-occur in wildlife and have similar effects • Understanding the distribution of multiple burdens allows for better interpretation of effects • Path analysis was used to examine the

  14. Direct and indirect causes of sex differences in mercury concentrations and parasitic infections in a marine bird

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Provencher, J.F., E-mail: jennifpro@gmail.com [Department of Biology, Carleton University, 1125 Colonel By Drive, Raven Road, Ottawa, ON K1A 0H3 (Canada); Gilchrist, H.G. [Wildlife Research Division, National Wildlife Research Centre, Environment and Climate Change Canada, 1125 Colonel By Drive, Raven Road, Ottawa, ON K1A 0H3 (Canada); Mallory, M.L. [Department of Biology, Acadia University, 33 Westwood Ave, Wolfville, NS B4P 2R6 (Canada); Mitchell, G.W. [Wildlife Research Division, National Wildlife Research Centre, Environment and Climate Change Canada, 1125 Colonel By Drive, Raven Road, Ottawa, ON K1A 0H3 (Canada); Forbes, M.R. [Department of Biology, Carleton University, 1125 Colonel By Drive, Raven Road, Ottawa, ON K1A 0H3 (Canada)

    2016-05-01

    In many animal species, males and females differ in their levels of contaminants and/or parasitic infections. Most contaminants and gastro-intestinal parasites are obtained through prey ingestion, and thus the causes of sex differences in the distribution of these factors might follow similar pathways. We studied the northern common eider duck (Somateria molissima borealis) as an avian model, and used directed separation path analysis to explore the causes of sex differences in mercury (Hg) and gastro-intestinal helminths. Two trophically transmitted helminths were examined: a cestode (Lateriporus sp.) and an acanthocephalan (Polymorphus sp). We found that the number of Lateriporus sp. varied positively with stable isotope signature (as indicated by δ{sup 15}N in eider breast muscle tissue), and negatively with crustaceans being present in the short term diet. We also found that Polymorphus sp. varied positively with eider tissue stable isotope signature. However, Polymorphus sp. varied negatively with sex indirectly through condition and liver mass. Similarly, Hg concentrations also varied negatively with sex indirectly through condition and liver mass, with both Polymorphus sp. intensity and Hg concentrations significantly higher in males. We found that model fit increased when a negative relationship between the two helminth species was included, suggesting a yet unknown causal mechanism linking these parasites. Our findings suggest that although Hg and gastro-intestinal parasites are both trophically transmitted through the eider's prey items, the factors that contribute towards bioaccumulation of these two burdens differ in source, likely caused by several different factors and may potentially influence each other. - Highlights: • Contaminants and parasitic infections often co-occur in wildlife and have similar effects • Understanding the distribution of multiple burdens allows for better interpretation of effects • Path analysis was used to

  15. Low levels of chemical anthropogenic pollution may threaten amphibians by impairing predator recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polo-Cavia, Nuria; Burraco, Pablo; Gomez-Mestre, Ivan

    2016-03-01

    Recent studies suggest that direct mortality and physiological effects caused by pollutants are major contributing factors to global amphibian decline. However, even sublethal concentrations of pollutants could be harmful if they combined with other factors to cause high mortality in amphibians. Here we show that sublethal concentrations of pollutants can disrupt the ability of amphibian larvae to recognize predators, hence increasing their risk of predation. This effect is indeed much more important since very low amounts of pollutants are ubiquitous, and environmental efforts are mostly directed towards preventing lethal spills. We analyzed the effects of two common contaminants (humic acid and ammonium nitrate) on the ability of tadpoles of the western spadefoot toad (Pelobates cultripes) to recognize chemical cues from a common predator, nymphs of the dragonfly Anax imperator. We compared the swimming activity of tadpoles in the presence and absence of water-borne chemical cues from dragonflies at different concentrations of humic acid and ammonium nitrate. Tadpoles reduced swimming activity in response to predator cues in the absence of pollutants, whereas they remained unresponsive to these cues when either humic acid or ammonium nitrate was added to the water, even at low concentrations. Moreover, changes in tadpole activity associated with the pollutants themselves were non-significant, indicating no toxic effect. Alteration of the natural chemical environment of aquatic systems by pollutants may be an important contributing cause for declines in amphibian populations, even at sublethal concentrations. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Simulated predator stimuli reduce brain cell proliferation in two electric fish species, Brachyhypopomus gauderio and Apteronotus leptorhynchus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunlap, Kent D; Keane, Geoffrey; Ragazzi, Michael; Lasky, Elise; Salazar, Vielka L

    2017-07-01

    The brain structure of many animals is influenced by their predators, but the cellular processes underlying this brain plasticity are not well understood. Previous studies showed that electric fish ( Brachyhypopomus occidentalis ) naturally exposed to high predator ( Rhamdia quelen ) density and tail injury had reduced brain cell proliferation compared with individuals facing few predators and those with intact tails. However, these field studies described only correlations between predator exposure and cell proliferation. Here, we used a congener Brachyhypopomus gauderio and another electric fish Apteronotus leptorhynchus to experimentally test the hypothesis that exposure to a predator stimulus and tail injury causes alterations in brain cell proliferation. To simulate predator exposure, we either amputated the tail followed by short-term (1 day) or long-term (17-18 days) recovery or repeatedly chased intact fish with a plastic rod over a 7 day period. We measured cell proliferation (PCNA+ cell density) in the telencephalon and diencephalon, and plasma cortisol, which commonly mediates stress-induced changes in brain cell proliferation. In both species, either tail amputation or simulated predator chase decreased cell proliferation in the telencephalon in a manner resembling the effect of predators in the field. In A. leptorhynchus , cell proliferation decreased drastically in the short term after tail amputation and partially rebounded after long-term recovery. In B. gauderio , tail amputation elevated cortisol levels, but repeated chasing had no effect. In A. leptorhynchus , tail amputation elevated cortisol levels in the short term but not in the long term. Thus, predator stimuli can cause reductions in brain cell proliferation, but the role of cortisol is not clear. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  17. Temporal constraints on predation risk assessment in a changing world

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chivers, Douglas P.; Ramasamy, Ryan A.; McCormick, Mark I.; Watson, Sue-Ann; Siebeck, Ulrike E.; Ferrari, Maud C.O.

    2014-01-01

    Habitat degradation takes various forms and likely represents the most significant threat to our global biodiversity. Recently, we have seen considerable attention paid to increasing global CO 2 emissions which lead to ocean acidification (OA). Other stressors, such as changing levels of ultraviolet radiation (UVR), also impact biodiversity but have received much less attention in the recent past. Here we examine fundamental questions about temporal aspects of risk assessment by coral reef damselfish and provide critical insights into how OA and UVR influence this assessment. Chemical cues released during a predator attack provide a rich source of information that other prey animals use to mediate their risk of predation and are the basis of the majority of trait-mediated indirect interactions in aquatic communities. However, we have surprisingly limited information about temporal aspects of risk assessment because we lack knowledge about how long chemical cues persist after they are released into the environment. Here, we showed that under ambient CO 2 conditions (∼ 385 μatm), alarm cues of ambon damselfish (Pomacentrus amboinensis) did not degrade within 30 min in the absence of ultraviolet radiation (UVR), but were degraded within 15 min when the CO 2 was increased to ∼ 905 μatm. In experiments that used filters to eliminate UVR, we found minimal degradation of alarm cues within 30 min, whereas under ambient UVR conditions, alarm cues were completely degraded within 15 min. Moreover, in the presence of both UVR and elevated CO 2 , alarm cues were broken down within 5 min. Our results highlight that alarm cues degrade surprisingly quickly under natural conditions and that anthropogenic changes have the potential to dramatically change rates of cue degradation in the wild. This has considerable implications for risk assessment and consequently the importance of trait-mediated indirect interactions in coral-reef communities. - Highlights: • We have limited

  18. Partitioning mechanisms of predator interference in different habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffen, Blaine D; Byers, James E

    2006-01-01

    Prey are often consumed by multiple predator species. Predation rates on shared prey species measured in isolation often do not combine additively due to interference or facilitation among the predator species. Furthermore, the strength of predator interactions and resulting prey mortality may change with habitat type. We experimentally examined predation on amphipods in rock and algal habitats by two species of intertidal crabs, Hemigrapsus sanguineus (top predators) and Carcinus maenas (intermediate predators). Algae provided a safer habitat for amphipods when they were exposed to only a single predator species. When both predator species were present, mortality of amphipods was less than additive in both habitats. However, amphipod mortality was reduced more in rock than algal habitat because intermediate predators were less protected in rock habitat and were increasingly targeted by omnivorous top predators. We found that prey mortality in general was reduced by (1) altered foraging behavior of intermediate predators in the presence of top predators, (2) top predators switching to foraging on intermediate predators rather than shared prey, and (3) density reduction of intermediate predators. The relative importance of these three mechanisms was the same in both habitats; however, the magnitude of each was greater in rock habitat. Our study demonstrates that the strength of specific mechanisms of interference between top and intermediate predators can be quantified but cautions that these results may be habitat specific.

  19. The Problem of Soil Erosion in Developing Countries--Direct and Indirect Causes and Recommendations for Reducing It to a Sustainable Level.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Middlebrook, Cathy H.; Goode, Pamela M.

    1992-01-01

    Presents direct and indirect causes of erosion in developing countries. Identifies soil conservation developments ranging from major international policy reforms to small-scale, local farming programs. Suggests that strategies at all levels, and the political will to implement them, are needed if erosion is to be reduced to a sustainable rate. (23…

  20. Pemangsaan Propagul Mangrove Rhizophora sp. Sebagai Bukti Teori Dominance-Predation (Predation of Mangrove Propagule, Rhizophora sp. as Evidence of Dominance-Predation Theory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rudhi Pribadi

    2014-06-01

    Propagule predation on mangrove in some extent reduced its viability to grow into seedling. The predation could happened before (pre-dispersal or after (post-dispersal the propagule drop from the tree.The reasearch was conducted in Pasar Banggi, Rembang District, Central Java. The aim was to investigate the predation rate of Rhizophora mucronata Lamk., R. stylosa Griff. and R. apiculata Blume propagules pre-dispersal and post-dispersal. Firstly, preface experiment for find domination spesies in the location, Second, with applied descriptive-based survey sampling and field experiment methods. Than all propagules of five replication trees were harvested and checked for its condition on pre-dispersal step. The third, with post-dispersal study there were twenty propagules from each spesies and tied them with used nylon string and placed on the forest floor for 2 until 18 days and checked its condition every 2 days after placement. This study is also set for tested the Smith’s theory on propagule predation related to tree domination. Rhizophora stylosa propagule was  most predated before they fall (mean 61,06%, range 45,40-76,05%, followed by R. apiculata (mean 58,18%, range 47,41-68% and the lowest isR. mucronata with mean 11,88% (range 7,06-15,71%. After 18 days of experiment in the field R. stylosa propagule in R. stylosa–dominated area was the lowest predated (mean 46,67% compared to propagule in the area dominated by R. apiculata (63,33% and also in R. mucronata area (83,33 Predated R. mucronata propagule is the highest in the R. mucronata dominated area (mean 95% compared with R. apiculata dominated area (mean 55% and also in R. stylosa dominated area (45%. Pradated of R. apiculata propagule is the lowest in the domination area of R. apiculata (50% compared with R. stylosa area domination with (mean 70% also R. mucronata (73,33%. The result showed that the theory of dominance-predation can be proved only for R. stylosa and R. apiculata spesies, but not for R

  1. A minimal model of predator-swarm interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yuxin; Kolokolnikov, Theodore

    2014-05-06

    We propose a minimal model of predator-swarm interactions which captures many of the essential dynamics observed in nature. Different outcomes are observed depending on the predator strength. For a 'weak' predator, the swarm is able to escape the predator completely. As the strength is increased, the predator is able to catch up with the swarm as a whole, but the individual prey is able to escape by 'confusing' the predator: the prey forms a ring with the predator at the centre. For higher predator strength, complex chasing dynamics are observed which can become chaotic. For even higher strength, the predator is able to successfully capture the prey. Our model is simple enough to be amenable to a full mathematical analysis, which is used to predict the shape of the swarm as well as the resulting predator-prey dynamics as a function of model parameters. We show that, as the predator strength is increased, there is a transition (owing to a Hopf bifurcation) from confusion state to chasing dynamics, and we compute the threshold analytically. Our analysis indicates that the swarming behaviour is not helpful in avoiding the predator, suggesting that there are other reasons why the species may swarm. The complex shape of the swarm in our model during the chasing dynamics is similar to the shape of a flock of sheep avoiding a shepherd.

  2. Differentiated Anti-Predation Responses in a Superorganism.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas A O'Shea-Wheller

    Full Text Available Insect societies are complex systems, displaying emergent properties much greater than the sum of their individual parts. As such, the concept of these societies as single 'superorganisms' is widely applied to describe their organisation and biology. Here, we test the applicability of this concept to the response of social insect colonies to predation during a vulnerable period of their life history. We used the model system of house-hunting behaviour in the ant Temnothorax albipennis. We show that removing individuals from directly within the nest causes an evacuation response, while removing ants at the periphery of scouting activity causes the colony to withdraw back into the nest. This suggests that colonies react differentially, but in a coordinated fashion, to these differing types of predation. Our findings lend support to the superorganism concept, as the whole society reacts much like a single organism would in response to attacks on different parts of its body. The implication of this is that a collective reaction to the location of worker loss within insect colonies is key to avoiding further harm, much in the same way that the nervous systems of individuals facilitate the avoidance of localised damage.

  3. Invasive predators and global biodiversity loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doherty, Tim S; Glen, Alistair S; Nimmo, Dale G; Ritchie, Euan G; Dickman, Chris R

    2016-10-04

    Invasive species threaten biodiversity globally, and invasive mammalian predators are particularly damaging, having contributed to considerable species decline and extinction. We provide a global metaanalysis of these impacts and reveal their full extent. Invasive predators are implicated in 87 bird, 45 mammal, and 10 reptile species extinctions-58% of these groups' contemporary extinctions worldwide. These figures are likely underestimated because 23 critically endangered species that we assessed are classed as "possibly extinct." Invasive mammalian predators endanger a further 596 species at risk of extinction, with cats, rodents, dogs, and pigs threatening the most species overall. Species most at risk from predators have high evolutionary distinctiveness and inhabit insular environments. Invasive mammalian predators are therefore important drivers of irreversible loss of phylogenetic diversity worldwide. That most impacted species are insular indicates that management of invasive predators on islands should be a global conservation priority. Understanding and mitigating the impact of invasive mammalian predators is essential for reducing the rate of global biodiversity loss.

  4. Compensatory growth following transient intraguild predation risk in predatory mites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walzer, Andreas; Lepp, Natalia; Schausberger, Peter

    2015-05-01

    Compensatory or catch-up growth following growth impairment caused by transient environmental stress, due to adverse abiotic factors or food, is widespread in animals. Such growth strategies commonly balance retarded development and reduced growth. They depend on the type of stressor but are unknown for predation risk, a prime selective force shaping life history. Anti-predator behaviours by immature prey typically come at the cost of reduced growth rates with potential negative consequences on age and size at maturity. Here, we investigated the hypothesis that transient intraguild predation (IGP) risk induces compensatory or catch-up growth in the plant-inhabiting predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis . Immature P. persimilis were exposed in the larval stage to no, low or high IGP risk, and kept under benign conditions in the next developmental stage, the protonymph. High but not low IGP risk prolonged development of P. persimilis larvae, which was compensated in the protonymphal stage by increased foraging activity and accelerated development, resulting in optimal age and size at maturity. Our study provides the first experimental evidence that prey may balance developmental costs accruing from anti-predator behaviour by compensatory growth.

  5. Neuroendocrine changes upon exposure to predator odors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hegab, Ibrahim M; Wei, Wanhong

    2014-05-28

    Predator odors are non-intrusive and naturalistic stressors of high ethological relevance in animals. Upon exposure to a predator or its associated cues, robust physiological and molecular anti-predator defensive strategies are elicited thereby allowing prey species to recognize, avoid and defend against a possible predation threat. In this review, we will discuss the nature of neuroendocrine stress responses upon exposure to predator odors. Predator odors can have a profound effect on the endocrine system, including activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, and induction of stress hormones such as corticosterone and adrenocorticotropic hormone. On a neural level, short-term exposure to predator odors leads to induction of the c-fos gene, while induction of ΔFosB in a different brain region is detected under chronic predation stress. Future research should aim to elucidate the relationships between neuroendocrine and behavioral outputs to gage the different levels of anti-predator responses in prey species. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Beyond Predation: The Zoophytophagous Predator Macrolophus pygmaeus Induces Tomato Resistance against Spider Mites.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria L Pappas

    Full Text Available Many predatory insects that prey on herbivores also feed on the plant, but it is unknown whether plants affect the performance of herbivores by responding to this phytophagy with defence induction. We investigate whether the prior presence of the omnivorous predator Macrolophus pygmaeus (Rambur on tomato plants affects plant resistance against two different herbivore species. Besides plant-mediated effects of M. pygmaeus on herbivore performance, we examined whether a plant defence trait that is known to be inducible by herbivory, proteinase inhibitors (PI, may also be activated in response to the interactions of this predator with the tomato plant. We show that exposing tomato plants to the omnivorous predator M. pygmaeus reduced performance of a subsequently infesting herbivore, the two-spotted spider mite Tetranychus urticae Koch, but not of the greenhouse whitefly Trialeurodes vaporariorum (Westwood. The spider-mite infested tomato plants experience a lower herbivore load, i.e., number of eggs deposited and individuals present, when previously exposed to the zoophytophagous predator. This effect is not restricted to the exposed leaf and persists on exposed plants for at least two weeks after the removal of the predators. The decreased performance of spider mites as a result of prior exposure of the plant to M. pygmaeus is accompanied by a locally and systemically increased accumulation of transcripts and activity of proteinase inhibitors that are known to be involved in plant defence. Our results demonstrate that zoophytophagous predators can induce plant defence responses and reduce herbivore performance. Hence, the suppression of populations of certain herbivores via consumption may be strengthened by the induction of plant defences by zoophytophagous predators.

  7. Enclosed nests may provide greater thermal than nest predation benefits compared with open nests across latitudes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Thomas E.; Boyce, Andy J.; Fierro-Calderon, Karolina; Mitchell, Adam E.; Armstad, Connor E.; Mouton, James C.; Bin Soudi, Evertius E.

    2017-01-01

    Nest structure is thought to provide benefits that have fitness consequences for several taxa. Traditionally, reduced nest predation has been considered the primary benefit underlying evolution of nest structure, whereas thermal benefits have been considered a secondary or even non-existent factor. Yet, the relative roles of these factors on nest structures remain largely unexplored.Enclosed nests have a constructed or natural roof connected to sides that allow a restricted opening or tube entrance that provides cover in all directions except the entrance, whereas open nests are cups or platforms that are open above. We show that construction of enclosed nests is more common among songbirds (Passeriformes) in tropical and southern hemisphere regions than in north temperate regions. This geographic pattern may reflect selection from predation risk, under long-standing assumptions that nest predation rates are higher in southern regions and that enclosed nests reduce predation risk compared with open cup nests. We therefore compared nest predation rates between enclosed vs. open nests in 114 songbird species that do not nest in tree holes among five communities of coexisting birds, and for 205 non-hole-nesting species from the literature, across northern temperate, tropical, and southern hemisphere regions.Among coexisting species, enclosed nests had lower nest predation rates than open nests in two south temperate sites, but not in either of two tropical sites or a north temperate site. Nest predation did not differ between nest types at any latitude based on literature data. Among 319 species from both our field studies and the literature, enclosed nests did not show consistent benefits of reduced predation and, in fact, predation was not consistently higher in the tropics, contrary to long-standing perspectives.Thermal benefits of enclosed nests were indicated based on three indirect results. First, species that built enclosed nests were smaller than species using

  8. Latitude, temperature, and habitat complexity predict predation pressure in eelgrass beds across the Northern Hemisphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, Pamela L; Stachowicz, John J; Hovel, Kevin; Boström, Christoffer; Boyer, Katharyn; Cusson, Mathieu; Eklöf, Johan S; Engel, Friederike G; Engelen, Aschwin H; Eriksson, Britas Klemens; Fodrie, F Joel; Griffin, John N; Hereu, Clara M; Hori, Masakazu; Hanley, Torrance C; Ivanov, Mikhail; Jorgensen, Pablo; Kruschel, Claudia; Lee, Kun-Seop; McGlathery, Karen; Moksnes, Per-Olav; Nakaoka, Masahiro; O'Connor, Mary I; O'Connor, Nessa E; Orth, Robert J; Rossi, Francesca; Ruesink, Jennifer; Sotka, Erik E; Thormar, Jonas; Tomas, Fiona; Unsworth, Richard K F; Whalen, Matthew A; Duffy, J Emmett

    2018-01-01

    Latitudinal gradients in species interactions are widely cited as potential causes or consequences of global patterns of biodiversity. However, mechanistic studies documenting changes in interactions across broad geographic ranges are limited. We surveyed predation intensity on common prey (live amphipods and gastropods) in communities of eelgrass (Zostera marina) at 48 sites across its Northern Hemisphere range, encompassing over 37° of latitude and four continental coastlines. Predation on amphipods declined with latitude on all coasts but declined more strongly along western ocean margins where temperature gradients are steeper. Whereas in situ water temperature at the time of the experiments was uncorrelated with predation, mean annual temperature strongly positively predicted predation, suggesting a more complex mechanism than simply increased metabolic activity at the time of predation. This large-scale biogeographic pattern was modified by local habitat characteristics; predation declined with higher shoot density both among and within sites. Predation rates on gastropods, by contrast, were uniformly low and varied little among sites. The high replication and geographic extent of our study not only provides additional evidence to support biogeographic variation in predation intensity, but also insight into the mechanisms that relate temperature and biogeographic gradients in species interactions. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  9. Learned predation risk management by spider mites

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas eHackl

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Predation is a prime selective force shaping prey behavior. Investment in anti-predator behavior is traded-off against time and energy for other fitness-enhancing activities such as foraging or reproduction. To optimize this benefit/cost trade-off, prey should be able to innately and/or by experience modulate their behavior to the level of predation risk. Here, we assessed learned predation risk management in the herbivorous two-spotted spider mite Tetranychus urticae. We exposed spider mites coming from benign (naïve or high immediate predation risk (experienced environments to latent and/or no risk and assessed their site choice, activity and oviposition. Benign environments were characterized by the absence of any predator cues, high immediate risk environments by killed spider mites, physical presence of the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis and associated chemosensory traces left on the surface, and latent risk environments by only predator traces. In the no-choice experiment both naïve and experienced spider mites laid their first egg later on leaves with than without predator traces. Irrespective of predator traces presence/absence, experienced mites laid their first egg earlier than naïve ones did. Naïve spider mites were more active, indicating higher restlessness, and laid fewer eggs on leaves with predator traces, whereas experienced mites were less active and laid similar numbers of eggs on leaves with and without predator traces. In the choice experiment both naïve and experienced spider mites preferentially resided and oviposited on leaves without predator traces but experienced mites were less active than naïve ones. Overall, our study suggests that spider mites experienced with high predation risk behave bolder under latent risk than naïve spider mites. Since predator traces alone do not indicate immediate risk, we argue that the attenuated anti-predator response of experienced spider mites represents adaptive learned

  10. Predation as a landscape effect: the trading off by prey species between predation risks and protection benefits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mönkkönen, M; Husby, M; Tornberg, R; Helle, P; Thomson, R L

    2007-05-01

    1. Predators impose costs on their prey but may also provide benefits such as protection against other (e.g. nest) predators. The optimal breeding location in relation to the distance from a nesting raptor varies so as to minimize the sum of costs of adult and nest predation. We provide a conceptual model to account for variation in the relative predation risks and derive qualitative predictions for how different prey species should respond to the distance from goshawk Accipiter gentilis nests. 2. We test the model predictions using a comprehensive collection of data from northern Finland and central Norway. First, we carried out a series of experiments with artificial bird nests to test if goshawks may provide protection against nest predation. Second, we conducted standard bird censuses and nest-box experiments to detect how the density or territory occupancy of several prey species varies with distance from the nearest goshawk nest. 3. Nest predation rate increased with distance from goshawk nest indicating that goshawks may provide protection for birds' nests against nest predation. Abundance (or probability of presence) of the main prey species of goshawks peaked at intermediate distances from goshawk nests, reflecting the trade-off. The abundance of small songbird species decreased with distance from goshawk nests. The goshawk poses little risk to small songbirds and they may benefit from goshawk proximity in protection against nest predation. Finally, no pattern with distance in pied flycatcher territory (nest box) occupation rate or the onset of egg-laying was detected. This is expected, as flycatchers neither suffer from marked nest predation risk nor are favoured goshawk prey. 4. Our results suggest that territory location in relation to the nest of a predator is a trade-off situation where adult birds weigh the risk of themselves being predated against the benefits accrued from increased nest survival. Prey species appear able to detect and measure

  11. A predator-2 prey fast-slow dynamical system for rapid predator evolution

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Piltz, Sofia Helena; Veerman, Frits; Maini, Philip K.

    2017-01-01

    We consider adaptive change of diet of a predator population that switches its feeding between two prey populations. We develop a novel 1 fast-3 slow dynamical system to describe the dynamics of the three populations amidst continuous but rapid evolution of the predator's diet choice. The two ext...

  12. 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)

  13. Weed seed predation in organic and conventional fields

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Navntoft, Søren; Wratten, S.D.; Kristensen, Kristian

    2009-01-01

    Enhanced biological control of weed seeds may improve sustainability of agricultural production. Biological control due to seed predation may be higher in organic fields because organic production generally supports more seed predators. To investigate such a difference, weed seed predation...... University and in two of the fields used for estimating seed predation. Recording of predators had therefore limited overlap with seed predation assays but was expected to give important information on key seed predators in the region. The mean seed removal rate was 17% in organic fields compared with 10...... edges. Overall, there was no consistent effect of distance from the field edge. Vegetation had a significant influence on the predation rates, with maximum rates at a medium-dense plant cover. Based on the video images, birds were the most important seed predators. The higher weed seed predation rate...

  14. Stabilization and complex dynamics in a predator-prey model with predator suffering from an infectious disease.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kooi, B.W.; van Voorn, G.A.K.; Pada Das, K.

    2011-01-01

    We study the effects of a non-specified infectious disease of the predator on the dynamics a predator-prey system, by evaluating the dynamics of a three-dimensional model. The predator population in this (PSI) model is split into a susceptible and an unrecoverable infected population, while all

  15. 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.

  16. Species invasion shifts the importance of predator dependence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffen, Blaine D; Delaney, David G

    2007-12-01

    The strength of interference between foraging individuals can influence per capita consumption rates, with important consequences for predator and prey populations and system stability. Here we demonstrate how the replacement of a previously established invader, the predatory crab Carcinus maenas, by the recently invading predatory crab Hemigrapsus sanguineus shifts predation from a species that experiences strong predator interference (strong predator dependence) to one that experiences weak predator interference (weak predator dependence). We demonstrate using field experiments that differences in the strength of predator dependence persist for these species both when they forage on a single focal prey species only (the mussel Mytilus edulis) and when they forage more broadly across the entire prey community. This shift in predator dependence with species replacement may be altering the biomass across trophic levels, consistent with theoretical predictions, as we show that H. sanguineus populations are much larger than C. maenas populations throughout their invaded ranges. Our study highlights that predator dependence may differ among predator species and demonstrates that different predatory impacts of two conspicuous invasive predators may be explained at least in part by different strengths of predator dependence.

  17. Greater sage-grouse nest predators in the Virginia Mountains of northwestern Nevada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lockyer, Zachary B.; Coates, Peter S.; Casazza, Michael L.; Espinosa, Shawn; Delehanty, David J.

    2013-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse Centrocercus urophasianus, hereafter sage-grouse, populations have declined across their range due to the loss, degradation, and fragmentation of habitat. Habitat alterations can lead not only to vegetative changes but also to shifts in animal behavior and predator composition that may influence population vital rates, such as nest success. For example, common ravens Corvus corax are sage-grouse nest predators, and common raven abundance is positively associated with human-caused habitat alterations. Because nest success is a central component to sage-grouse population persistence, research that identifies factors influencing nest success will better inform conservation efforts. We used videography to unequivocally identify sage-grouse nest predators within the Virginia Mountains of northwestern Nevada, USA, from 2009 to 2011 and used maximum likelihood to calculate daily probability of nest survival. In the Virginia Mountains, fires, energy exploration, and other anthropogenic activities have altered historic sage-grouse habitat. We monitored 71 sage-grouse nests during the study, placing video cameras at 39 nests. Cumulative nest survival for all nests was 22.4% (95% CI, 13.0–33.4%), a survival rate that was significantly lower than other published results for sage-grouse in the Great Basin. Depredation was the primary cause for nest failure in our study (82.5%), and common ravens were the most frequent sage-grouse nest predator, accounting for 46.7% of nest depredations. We also successfully documented a suite of mammalian and reptilian species depredating sage-grouse nests, including some predators never previously confirmed in the literature to be sage-grouse nest predators (i.e., bobcats Lynx rufus and long-tailed weasels Mephitis frenata). Within the high elevation, disturbed habitat of the Virginia Mountains, low sage-grouse nest success may be limiting sage-grouse population growth. These results suggest that management actions that

  18. Humans as predators: an overview of predation strategies of hunters with contrasting motivational drivers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fredrik Dalerum

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Predator-prey theory suggests that generalist predators are linked to demographic stability of prey whereas specialists are destabilizing. We overview the demographic consequences of different predation strategies and hypothesize that subsistence hunting occurs opportunistically, persecution hunters behave like specialist predators, and recreational hunters behave like generalist predators. Under this hypothesis, persecution hunting would have destabilizing effects, whereas the effects of subsistence and recreational hunting would be neutral or stabilizing. We found poor empirical support for this hypothesis, but there was scarce empirical data. Recreational hunters mainly hunted opportunistically and hunting as managed persecution followed a type III functional response, i.e. with low hunting intensity at low game abundances and a switch to an increased intensity at some level of abundance. We suggest that recreational hunters have limited destabilizing effects on game populations and that hunting may be an ineffective way of complete the removal of invasive species. We urge for further studies quantifying the responses of hunters to game abundances, in particular studies evaluating the responses of subsistence hunters and illegal persecution.

  19. Generalization of predator recognition: Velvet geckos display anti-predator behaviours in response to chemicals from non-dangerous elapid snakes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan K. WEBB, Weiguo DU, David PIKE, Richard SHINE

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Many prey species detect chemical cues from predators and modify their behaviours in ways that reduce their risk of predation. Theory predicts that prey should modify their anti-predator responses according to the degree of threat posed by the predator. That is, prey should show the strongest responses to chemicals of highly dangerous prey, but should ignore or respond weakly to chemicals from non-dangerous predators. However, if anti-predator behaviours are not costly, and predators are rarely encountered, prey may exhibit generalised antipredator behaviours to dangerous and non-dangerous predators. In Australia, most elapid snakes eat lizards, and are therefore potentially dangerous to lizard prey. Recently, we found that the nocturnal velvet gecko Oedura lesueurii responds to chemicals from dangerous and non-dangerous elapid snakes, suggesting that it displays generalised anti-predator behaviours to chemicals from elapid snakes. To explore the generality of this result, we videotaped the behaviour of velvet geckos in the presence of chemical cues from two small elapid snakes that rarely consume geckos: the nocturnal golden-crowned snake Cacophis squamulosus and the diurnal marsh snake Hemiaspis signata. We also videotaped geckos in trials involving unscented cards (controls and cologne-scented cards (pungency controls. In trials involving Cacophis and Hemiaspis chemicals, 50% and 63% of geckos spent long time periods (> 3 min freezing whilst pressed flat against the substrate, respectively. Over half the geckos tested exhibited anti-predator behaviours (tail waving, tail vibration, running in response to Cacophis (67% or Hemiaspis (63% chemicals. These behaviours were not observed in control or pungency control trials. Our results support the idea that the velvet gecko displays generalised anti-predator responses to chemical cues from elapid snakes. Generalised responses to predator chemicals may be common in prey species that co-occur with

  20. Physical and biochemical changes in sludge upon Tubifex tubifex predation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Valk, S.L.; Khadem, A.F.; Foreman, Christine M.; van Lier, J.B.; de Kreuk, M.K.

    2016-01-01

    Worm predation (WP) on activated sludge leads to increased sludge degradation rates, irrespective of the type of worm used or reactor conditions employed. However, the cause of the increased sludge degradation rates remains unknown. This paper presents a comparative analysis of the physical and

  1. A predator-prey model with a holling type I functional response including a predator mutual interference

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seo, G.; DeAngelis, D.L.

    2011-01-01

    The most widely used functional response in describing predator-prey relationships is the Holling type II functional response, where per capita predation is a smooth, increasing, and saturating function of prey density. Beddington and DeAngelis modified the Holling type II response to include interference of predators that increases with predator density. Here we introduce a predator-interference term into a Holling type I functional response. We explain the ecological rationale for the response and note that the phase plane configuration of the predator and prey isoclines differs greatly from that of the Beddington-DeAngelis response; for example, in having three possible interior equilibria rather than one. In fact, this new functional response seems to be quite unique. We used analytical and numerical methods to show that the resulting system shows a much richer dynamical behavior than the Beddington-DeAngelis response, or other typically used functional responses. For example, cyclic-fold, saddle-fold, homoclinic saddle connection, and multiple crossing bifurcations can all occur. We then use a smooth approximation to the Holling type I functional response with predator mutual interference to show that these dynamical properties do not result from the lack of smoothness, but rather from subtle differences in the functional responses. ?? 2011 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

  2. Consumptive and nonconsumptive effect ratios depend on interaction between plant quality and hunting behavior of omnivorous predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephan, Jörg G; Stenberg, Johan A; Björkman, Christer

    2017-04-01

    Predators not only consume prey but exert nonconsumptive effects in form of scaring, consequently disturbing feeding or reproduction. However, how alternative food sources and hunting mode interactively affect consumptive and nonconsumptive effects with implications for prey fitness have not been addressed, impending functional understanding of such tritrophic interactions. With a herbivorous beetle, two omnivorous predatory bugs (plant sap as alternative food, contrasting hunting modes), and four willow genotypes (contrasting suitability for beetle/omnivore), we investigated direct and indirect effects of plant quality on the beetles key reproductive traits (oviposition rate, clutch size). Using combinations of either or both omnivores on different plant genotypes, we calculated the contribution of consumptive (eggs predated) and nonconsumptive (fewer eggs laid) effect on beetle fitness, including a prey density-independent measure (c:nc ratio). We found that larger clutches increase egg survival in presence of the omnivore not immediately consuming all eggs. However, rather than lowering mean, the beetles generally responded with a frequency shift toward smaller clutches. However, female beetles decreased mean and changed clutch size frequency with decreasing plant quality, therefore reducing intraspecific exploitative competition among larvae. More importantly, variation in host plant quality (to omnivore) led to nonconsumptive effects between one-third and twice as strong as the consumptive effects. Increased egg consumption on plants less suitable to the omnivore may therefore be accompanied by less searching and disturbing the beetle, representing a "cost" to the indirect plant defense in the form of a lower nonconsumptive effect. Many predators are omnivores and altering c:nc ratios (with egg retention as the most direct link to prey fitness) via plant quality and hunting behavior should be fundamental to advance ecological theory and applications

  3. Hypothalamic Circuits for Predation and Evasion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yi; Zeng, Jiawei; Zhang, Juen; Yue, Chenyu; Zhong, Weixin; Liu, Zhixiang; Feng, Qiru; Luo, Minmin

    2018-02-21

    The interactions between predator and prey represent some of the most dramatic events in nature and constitute a matter of life and death for both sides. The hypothalamus has been implicated in driving predation and evasion; however, the exact hypothalamic neural circuits underlying these behaviors remain poorly defined. Here, we demonstrate that inhibitory and excitatory projections from the mouse lateral hypothalamus (LH) to the periaqueductal gray (PAG) in the midbrain drive, respectively, predation and evasion. LH GABA neurons were activated during predation. Optogenetically stimulating PAG-projecting LH GABA neurons drove strong predatory attack, and inhibiting these cells reversibly blocked predation. In contrast, LH glutamate neurons were activated during evasion. Stimulating PAG-projecting LH glutamate neurons drove evasion and inhibiting them impeded predictive evasion. Therefore, the seemingly opposite behaviors of predation and evasion are tightly regulated by two dissociable modular command systems within a single neural projection from the LH to the PAG. VIDEO ABSTRACT. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Predator-induced phenotypic plasticity within- and across-generations: a challenge for theory?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walsh, Matthew R; Cooley, Frank; Biles, Kelsey; Munch, Stephan B

    2015-01-07

    Much work has shown that the environment can induce non-genetic changes in phenotype that span multiple generations. Theory predicts that predictable environmental variation selects for both increased within- and across-generation responses. Yet, to the best of our knowledge, there are no empirical tests of this prediction. We explored the relationship between within- versus across-generation plasticity by evaluating the influence of predator cues on the life-history traits of Daphnia ambigua. We measured the duration of predator-induced transgenerational effects, determined when transgenerational responses are induced, and quantified the cues that activate transgenerational plasticity. We show that predator exposure during embryonic development causes earlier maturation and increased reproductive output. Such effects are detectable two generations removed from predator exposure and are similar in magnitude in response to exposure to cues emitted by injured conspecifics. Moreover, all experimental contexts and traits yielded a negative correlation between within- versus across-generation responses. That is, responses to predator cues within- and across-generations were opposite in sign and magnitude. Although many models address transgenerational plasticity, none of them explain this apparent negative relationship between within- and across-generation plasticities. Our results highlight the need to refine the theory of transgenerational plasticity. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  5. Species diversity modulates predation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kratina, P.; Vos, M.; Anholt, B.R.

    2007-01-01

    Predation occurs in a context defined by both prey and non-prey species. At present it is largely unknown how species diversity in general, and species that are not included in a predator's diet in particular, modify predator–prey interactions.Therefore we studied how both the density and diversity

  6. Bioinsecticide-predator interactions: azadirachtin behavioral and reproductive impairment of the coconut mite predator Neoseiulus baraki.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Debora B Lima

    Full Text Available Synthetic pesticide use has been the dominant form of pest control since the 1940s. However, biopesticides are emerging as sustainable pest control alternatives, with prevailing use in organic agricultural production systems. Foremost among botanical biopesticides is the limonoid azadirachtin, whose perceived environmental safety has come under debate and scrutiny in recent years. Coconut production, particularly organic coconut production, is one of the agricultural systems in which azadirachtin is used as a primary method of pest control for the management of the invasive coconut mite, Aceria guerreronis Keifer (Acari: Eriophyidae. The management of this mite species also greatly benefits from predation by Neoseiulus baraki (Athias-Henriot (Acari: Phytoseiidae. Here, we assessed the potential behavioral impacts of azadirachtin on the coconut mite predator, N. baraki. We explored the effects of this biopesticide on overall predator activity, female searching time, and mating behavior and fecundity. Azadirachtin impairs the overall activity of the predator, reducing it to nearly half; however, female searching was not affected. In contrast, mating behavior was compromised by azadirachtin exposure particularly when male predators were exposed to the biopesticide. Consequently, predator fecundity was also compromised by azadirachtin, furthering doubts about its environmental safety and selectivity towards biological control agents.

  7. Bioinsecticide-predator interactions: azadirachtin behavioral and reproductive impairment of the coconut mite predator Neoseiulus baraki.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lima, Debora B; Melo, José Wagner S; Guedes, Nelsa Maria P; Gontijo, Lessando M; Guedes, Raul Narciso C; Gondim, Manoel Guedes C

    2015-01-01

    Synthetic pesticide use has been the dominant form of pest control since the 1940s. However, biopesticides are emerging as sustainable pest control alternatives, with prevailing use in organic agricultural production systems. Foremost among botanical biopesticides is the limonoid azadirachtin, whose perceived environmental safety has come under debate and scrutiny in recent years. Coconut production, particularly organic coconut production, is one of the agricultural systems in which azadirachtin is used as a primary method of pest control for the management of the invasive coconut mite, Aceria guerreronis Keifer (Acari: Eriophyidae). The management of this mite species also greatly benefits from predation by Neoseiulus baraki (Athias-Henriot) (Acari: Phytoseiidae). Here, we assessed the potential behavioral impacts of azadirachtin on the coconut mite predator, N. baraki. We explored the effects of this biopesticide on overall predator activity, female searching time, and mating behavior and fecundity. Azadirachtin impairs the overall activity of the predator, reducing it to nearly half; however, female searching was not affected. In contrast, mating behavior was compromised by azadirachtin exposure particularly when male predators were exposed to the biopesticide. Consequently, predator fecundity was also compromised by azadirachtin, furthering doubts about its environmental safety and selectivity towards biological control agents.

  8. Local habitat and landscape influence predation of bird nests on afforested Mediterranean cropland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez-Oliver, J. S.; Rey Benayas, J. M.; Carrascal, L. M.

    2014-07-01

    Afforestation programs such as the one promoted by the EU Common Agrarian Policy have contributed to spread tree plantations on former cropland. Nevertheless these afforestations may cause severe damage to open habitat species, especially birds of high conservation value. We investigated predation of artificial bird nests at young tree plantations and at the open farmland habitat adjacent to the tree plantations in central Spain. Predation rates were very high at both tree plantations (95.6%) and open farmland habitat (94.2%) after two and three week exposure. Plantation edge/area ratio and development of the tree canopy decreased predation rates and plantation area and magpie (Pica pica) abundance increased predation rates within tree plantations, which were also affected by land use types around plantations. The area of nearby tree plantations (positive effect), distance to the tree plantation edge (negative effect), and habitat type (mainly attributable to the location of nests in vineyards) explained predation rates at open farmland habitat. We conclude that predation rates on artificial nests were particularly high and rapid at or nearby large plantations, with high numbers of magpies and low tree development, and located in homogenous landscapes dominated by herbaceous crops and pastures with no remnants of semi-natural woody vegetation. Landscape planning should not favour tree plantations as the ones studied here in Mediterranean agricultural areas that are highly valuable for ground-nesting bird species.

  9. 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...

  10. Interclonal proteomic responses to predator exposure in Daphnia magna may depend on predator composition of habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otte, Kathrin A; Schrank, Isabella; Fröhlich, Thomas; Arnold, Georg J; Laforsch, Christian

    2015-08-01

    Phenotypic plasticity, the ability of one genotype to express different phenotypes in response to changing environmental conditions, is one of the most common phenomena characterizing the living world and is not only relevant for the ecology but also for the evolution of species. Daphnia, the water flea, is a textbook example for predator-induced phenotypic plastic defences; however, the analysis of molecular mechanisms underlying these inducible defences is still in its early stages. We exposed Daphnia magna to chemical cues of the predator Triops cancriformis to identify key processes underlying plastic defensive trait formation. To get a more comprehensive idea of this phenomenon, we studied four genotypes with five biological replicates each, originating from habitats characterized by different predator composition, ranging from predator-free habitats to habitats containing T. cancriformis. We analysed the morphologies as well as proteomes of predator-exposed and control animals. Three genotypes showed morphological changes when the predator was present. Using a high-throughput proteomics approach, we found 294 proteins which were significantly altered in their abundance after predator exposure in a general or genotype-dependent manner. Proteins connected to genotype-dependent responses were related to the cuticle, protein synthesis and calcium binding, whereas the yolk protein vitellogenin increased in abundance in all genotypes, indicating their involvement in a more general response. Furthermore, genotype-dependent responses at the proteome level were most distinct for the only genotype that shares its habitat with Triops. Altogether, our study provides new insights concerning genotype-dependent and general molecular processes involved in predator-induced phenotypic plasticity in D. magna. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  11. Temporal constraints on predation risk assessment in a changing world

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chivers, Douglas P., E-mail: doug.chivers@usask.ca [Department of Biology, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK S7N 5E2 (Canada); Ramasamy, Ryan A.; McCormick, Mark I.; Watson, Sue-Ann [ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, James Cook University, Townsville Qld4811 (Australia); School of Marine and Tropical Biology, James Cook University, Townsville Qld4811 (Australia); Siebeck, Ulrike E. [School of Biomedical Sciences, University of Queensland, Brisbane Qld4072 (Australia); Ferrari, Maud C.O. [Department of Biomedical Sciences, WCVM, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK S7W 5B4 (Canada)

    2014-12-01

    Habitat degradation takes various forms and likely represents the most significant threat to our global biodiversity. Recently, we have seen considerable attention paid to increasing global CO{sub 2} emissions which lead to ocean acidification (OA). Other stressors, such as changing levels of ultraviolet radiation (UVR), also impact biodiversity but have received much less attention in the recent past. Here we examine fundamental questions about temporal aspects of risk assessment by coral reef damselfish and provide critical insights into how OA and UVR influence this assessment. Chemical cues released during a predator attack provide a rich source of information that other prey animals use to mediate their risk of predation and are the basis of the majority of trait-mediated indirect interactions in aquatic communities. However, we have surprisingly limited information about temporal aspects of risk assessment because we lack knowledge about how long chemical cues persist after they are released into the environment. Here, we showed that under ambient CO{sub 2} conditions (∼ 385 μatm), alarm cues of ambon damselfish (Pomacentrus amboinensis) did not degrade within 30 min in the absence of ultraviolet radiation (UVR), but were degraded within 15 min when the CO{sub 2} was increased to ∼ 905 μatm. In experiments that used filters to eliminate UVR, we found minimal degradation of alarm cues within 30 min, whereas under ambient UVR conditions, alarm cues were completely degraded within 15 min. Moreover, in the presence of both UVR and elevated CO{sub 2}, alarm cues were broken down within 5 min. Our results highlight that alarm cues degrade surprisingly quickly under natural conditions and that anthropogenic changes have the potential to dramatically change rates of cue degradation in the wild. This has considerable implications for risk assessment and consequently the importance of trait-mediated indirect interactions in coral-reef communities. - Highlights:

  12. Mortality of Black-tailed Godwit Limosa limosa and Northern Lapwing Vanellus vanellus chicks in wet grasslands : influence of predation and agriculture

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schekkerman, Hans; Teunissen, Wolf; Oosterveld, Ernst

    Grassland-breeding shorebirds show widespread declines due to a reduction in breeding productivity following agricultural intensification. However, there is also concern that increasing predation causes further declines or precludes population recovery. Predation may itself be enhanced by

  13. Tipping and Concentration in Markets with Indirect Network Effects

    OpenAIRE

    Jean-Pierre H. Dubé; Günter J. Hitsch; Pradeep K. Chintagunta

    2010-01-01

    This paper develops a framework for measuring “tipping”—the increase in a firm's market share dominance caused by indirect network effects. Our measure compares the expected concentration in a market to the hypothetical expected concentration that would arise in the absence of indirect network effects. In practice, this measure requires a model that can predict the counterfactual market concentration under different parameter values capturing the strength of indirect network effects. We build...

  14. Species Diversity Enhances Predator Growth Rates

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Olson, M.H.; Jacobs, R.P.; O'Donnell, E.B.

    2007-01-01

    Predators can be important top-down regulators of community structure and are known to have both positive and negative effects on species diversity. However, little is known about the reciprocal effects of species diversity on predators. Across a set of 80 lakes in Connecticut, USA, we found a strong positive correlation between prey species diversity (using the Shannon-Weiner Diversity Index) and growth rates of largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides). This correlation was strongest for small predators and decreased with body size. Although the underlying mechanisms are not known, the correlation is not driven by total fish abundance, predator abundance, or productivity.

  15. Predators on private land: broad-scale socioeconomic interactions influence large predator management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hayley S. Clements

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The proliferation of private land conservation areas (PLCAs is placing increasing pressure on conservation authorities to effectively regulate their ecological management. Many PLCAs depend on tourism for income, and charismatic large mammal species are considered important for attracting international visitors. Broad-scale socioeconomic factors therefore have the potential to drive fine-scale ecological management, creating a systemic scale mismatch that can reduce long-term sustainability in cases where economic and conservation objectives are not perfectly aligned. We assessed the socioeconomic drivers and outcomes of large predator management on 71 PLCAs in South Africa. Owners of PLCAs that are stocking free-roaming large predators identified revenue generation as influencing most or all of their management decisions, and rated profit generation as a more important objective than did the owners of PLCAs that did not stock large predators. Ecotourism revenue increased with increasing lion (Panthera leo density, which created a potential economic incentive for stocking lion at high densities. Despite this potential mismatch between economic and ecological objectives, lion densities were sustainable relative to available prey. Regional-scale policy guidelines for free-roaming lion management were ecologically sound. By contrast, policy guidelines underestimated the area required to sustain cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus, which occurred at unsustainable densities relative to available prey. Evidence of predator overstocking included predator diet supplementation and frequent reintroduction of game. We conclude that effective facilitation of conservation on private land requires consideration of the strong and not necessarily beneficial multiscale socioeconomic factors that influence private land management.

  16. Aquatic insect predators and mosquito control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaalan, Essam Abdel-Salam; Canyon, Deon V

    2009-12-01

    Mosquitoes are serious biting pests and obligate vectors of many vertebrate pathogens. Their immature larval and pupal life stages are a common feature in most tropical and many temperate water bodies and often form a significant proportion of the biomass. Control strategies rely primarily on the use of larvicides and environmental modification to reduce recruitment and adulticides during periods of disease transmission. Larvicides are usually chemical but can involve biological toxins, agents or organisms. The use of insect predators in mosquito control has been exploited in a limited fashion and there is much room for further investigation and implementation. Insects that are recognized as having predatorial capacity with regard to mosquito prey have been identified in the Orders Odonata, Coleoptera, Diptera (primarily aquatic predators), and Hemiptera (primarily surface predators). Although their capacity is affected by certain biological and physical factors, they could play a major role in mosquito control. Furthermore, better understanding for the mosquitoes-predators relationship(s) could probably lead to satisfactory reduction of mosquito-borne diseases by utilizing either these predators in control programs, for instance biological and/or integrated control, or their kairomones as mosquitoes' ovipoisting repellents. This review covers the predation of different insect species on mosquito larvae, predator-prey-habitat relationships, co-habitation developmental issues, survival and abundance, oviposition avoidance, predatorial capacity and integrated vector control.

  17. Drosophila increase exploration after visually detecting predators.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miguel de la Flor

    Full Text Available Novel stimuli elicit behaviors that are collectively known as specific exploration. These behaviors allow the animal to become more familiar with the novel objects within its environment. Specific exploration is frequently suppressed by defensive reactions to predator cues. Herein, we examine if this suppression occurs in Drosophila melanogaster by measuring the response of these flies to wild harvested predators. The flies used in our experiments have been cultured and had not lived under predator threat for multiple decades. In a circular arena with centrally-caged predators, wild type Drosophila actively avoided the pantropical jumping spider, Plexippus paykulli, and the Texas unicorn mantis, Phyllovates chlorophaena, indicating an innate defensive reaction to these predators. Interestingly, wild type Drosophila males also avoided a centrally-caged mock spider, and the avoidance of the mock spider became exaggerated when it was made to move within the cage. Visually impaired Drosophila failed to detect and avoid the Plexippus paykulli and the moving mock spider, while the broadly anosmic orco2 mutants were fully capable of detecting and avoiding Plexippus paykulli, indicating that these flies principally relied upon vison to perceive the predator stimuli. During early exploration of the arena, exploratory activity increased in the presence of Plexippus paykulli and the moving mock spider. The elevated activity induced by Plexippus paykulli disappeared after the fly had finished exploring, suggesting the flies were capable of habituating the predator cues. Taken together, these results indicate that despite being isolated from predators for decades Drosophila will visually detect these predators, retain innate defensive behaviors, respond by increasing exploratory activity in the arena rather than suppressing activity, and may habituate to normal predator cues.

  18. Spatio-temporal trends in the predation of large gulls by peregrine falcons (Falco peregrinus in an insular breeding population

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sutton Luke J.

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Individual diet specialization occurs in many populations of generalist predators, with specific individuals developing specialist strategies in their feeding behaviour. Intraspecific resource partitioning is hypothesised to be common amongst species in higher trophic levels where competition for resources is intense, and a key driver in breeding success and community structure. Though well-studied in other predators, there is sparse data on ecological specialization in raptors, which are important drivers of community and trophic structure. In this study, the breeding season diet of an insular population of peregrine falcons (Falco peregrinus was determined from indirect analysis of prey remains collected over three years. An unexpected result was the high proportion of large gulls (Laridae, of the genus Larus, in the diet of two breeding pairs of peregrines. Large gulls made up 18.44% by frequency of total prey recorded and 30.81% by biomass. Herring gulls (Larus argentatus were the most common large gull prey, with immatures most frequent (67.95% compared to adults (19.23%. Overall, most gulls predated were immatures (80.77%. Frequency of predation varied between breeding pairs and months, but was consistent over the three years. Most gulls were taken in April (37.17%, followed by May (19.23%, with a smaller peak of immature herring gulls taken in August and September. The pattern of regular predation by peregrines on large gulls is a new observation with important implications for understanding individual diet specialization in raptors, and its effect on bird populations and community structure.

  19. Egg mortality: predation and hydrography in the central Baltic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Voss, R.; Hinrichsen, H.-H.; Stepputtis, D.

    2011-01-01

    during the egg phase to be of critical importance. Two years of extensive field investigations in the Bornholm Basin, central Baltic Sea, were undertaken. In 2002, a typical stagnation situation characterized by low salinity and poor oxygen conditions was investigated, and in early 2003, a major inflow...... of North Sea water completely changed the hydrographic conditions by increasing salinity and oxygen content, thereby altering ecological conditions. The goal was to quantify egg mortality caused by predation and hydrography, and to compare these estimates with independent estimates based on cohort analysis....... Results indicated high intra-annual variability in egg mortality. Cod and sprat egg mortality responded differently to the major Baltic inflow: mortality related to hydrographic conditions increased for sprat and decreased for cod. On the other hand, predation mortality during peak spawning decreased...

  20. Fatal attraction? Intraguild facilitation and suppression among predators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sivy, Kelly J.; Pozzanghera, Casey B.; Grace, James B.; Prugh, Laura R.

    2017-01-01

    Competition and suppression are recognized as dominant forces that structure predator communities. Facilitation via carrion provisioning, however, is a ubiquitous interaction among predators that could offset the strength of suppression. Understanding the relative importance of these positive and negative interactions is necessary to anticipate community-wide responses to apex predator declines and recoveries worldwide. Using state-sponsored wolf (Canis lupus) control in Alaska as a quasi experiment, we conducted snow track surveys of apex, meso-, and small predators to test for evidence of carnivore cascades (e.g., mesopredator release). We analyzed survey data using an integrative occupancy and structural equation modeling framework to quantify the strengths of hypothesized interaction pathways, and we evaluated fine-scale spatiotemporal responses of nonapex predators to wolf activity clusters identified from radio-collar data. Contrary to the carnivore cascade hypothesis, both meso- and small predator occupancy patterns indicated guild-wide, negative responses of nonapex predators to wolf abundance variations at the landscape scale. At the local scale, however, we observed a near guild-wide, positive response of nonapex predators to localized wolf activity. Local-scale association with apex predators due to scavenging could lead to landscape patterns of mesopredator suppression, suggesting a key link between occupancy patterns and the structure of predator communities at different spatial scales.

  1. Fatal Attraction? Intraguild Facilitation and Suppression among Predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sivy, Kelly J; Pozzanghera, Casey B; Grace, James B; Prugh, Laura R

    2017-11-01

    Competition and suppression are recognized as dominant forces that structure predator communities. Facilitation via carrion provisioning, however, is a ubiquitous interaction among predators that could offset the strength of suppression. Understanding the relative importance of these positive and negative interactions is necessary to anticipate community-wide responses to apex predator declines and recoveries worldwide. Using state-sponsored wolf (Canis lupus) control in Alaska as a quasi experiment, we conducted snow track surveys of apex, meso-, and small predators to test for evidence of carnivore cascades (e.g., mesopredator release). We analyzed survey data using an integrative occupancy and structural equation modeling framework to quantify the strengths of hypothesized interaction pathways, and we evaluated fine-scale spatiotemporal responses of nonapex predators to wolf activity clusters identified from radio-collar data. Contrary to the carnivore cascade hypothesis, both meso- and small predator occupancy patterns indicated guild-wide, negative responses of nonapex predators to wolf abundance variations at the landscape scale. At the local scale, however, we observed a near guild-wide, positive response of nonapex predators to localized wolf activity. Local-scale association with apex predators due to scavenging could lead to landscape patterns of mesopredator suppression, suggesting a key link between occupancy patterns and the structure of predator communities at different spatial scales.

  2. Cuckoos vs. top predators as prime bioindicators of biodiversity in disturbed environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morelli, Federico; Mousseau, Timothy A; Møller, Anders Pape

    2017-10-01

    We studied the abundance of the common cuckoo Cuculus canorus L. little cuckoo Cuculus poliocephalus L. and Asian cuckoo Cuculus saturatus L. and avian top predators as indicators of bird species richness (surrogate of biodiversity) in disturbed environments caused by radioactive contamination in Chernobyl, Ukraine and Fukushima, Japan, comparing their efficiency as indicators of local biodiversity hotspots. Bird species richness and birds abundance were quantified in each sample site during the breeding seasons between 2006 and 2015 and the level of background radiation was measured at every site. The correlation between number of cuckoos, top predators, land use composition and level of background radiation with bird species richness as response variable were examined using Generalized Linear Mixed Models. The strength of correlation between species richness and abundance and the covariates obtained from the model outputs were used as measure of the efficiency of each predictor, as well as the AIC of each model. Background radiation was negatively correlated with bird species richness and bird abundance in both countries, while number of top predators and cuckoos were both positively correlated with bird species richness and abundance. However, model with number of cuckoos was more performant than model with number of avian top predators. These differences in performance supports the hypothesis that cuckoos are a largely superior bioindicator than top predators. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Predator recognition in rainbowfish, Melanotaenia duboulayi, embryos.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lois Jane Oulton

    Full Text Available Exposure to olfactory cues during embryonic development can have long term impacts on birds and amphibians behaviour. Despite the vast literature on predator recognition and responses in fishes, few researchers have determined how fish embryos respond to predator cues. Here we exposed four-day-old rainbowfish (Melanotaenia duboulayi embryos to cues emanating from a novel predator, a native predator and injured conspecifics. Their response was assessed by monitoring heart rate and hatch time. Results showed that embryos have an innate capacity to differentiate between cues as illustrated by faster heart rates relative to controls. The greatest increase in heart rate occurred in response to native predator odour. While we found no significant change in the time taken for eggs to hatch, all treatments experienced slight delays as expected if embryos are attempting to reduce exposure to larval predators.

  4. 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.

  5. Empty seeds are not always bad: simultaneous effect of seed emptiness and masting on animal seed predation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramón Perea

    Full Text Available Seed masting and production of empty seeds have often been considered independently as different strategies to reduce seed predation by animals. Here, we integrate both phenomena within the whole assemblage of seed predators (both pre and post-dispersal and in two contrasting microsites (open vs. sheltered to improve our understanding of the factors controlling seed predation in a wind-dispersed tree (Ulmus laevis. In years with larger crop sizes more avian seed predators were attracted with an increase in the proportion of full seeds predated on the ground. However, for abundant crops, the presence of empty seeds decreased the proportion of full seeds predated. Empty seeds remained for a very long period in the tree, making location of full seeds more difficult for pre-dispersal predators and expanding the overall seed drop period at a very low cost (in dry biomass and allocation of C, N and P. Parthenocarpy (non-fertilized seeds was the main cause of seed emptiness whereas seed abortion was produced in low quantity. These aborted seeds fell prematurely and, thus, could not work as deceptive seeds. A proportion of 50% empty seeds significantly reduced ground seed predation by 26%. However, a high rate of parthenocarpy (beyond 50% empty seeds did not significantly reduce seed predation in comparison to 50% empty seeds. We also found a high variability and unpredictability in the production of empty seeds, both at tree and population level, making predator deception more effective. Open areas were especially important to facilitate seed survival since rodents (the main post-dispersal predators consumed seeds mostly under shrub cover. In elm trees parthenocarpy is a common event that might work as an adaptive strategy to reduce seed predation. Masting per se did not apparently reduce the overall proportion of seeds predated in this wind-dispersed tree, but kept great numbers of seeds unconsumed.

  6. Competition between apex predators? Brown bears decrease wolf kill rate on two continents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tallian, Aimee; Ordiz, Andrés; Metz, Matthew C; Milleret, Cyril; Wikenros, Camilla; Smith, Douglas W; Stahler, Daniel R; Kindberg, Jonas; MacNulty, Daniel R; Wabakken, Petter; Swenson, Jon E; Sand, Håkan

    2017-02-08

    Trophic interactions are a fundamental topic in ecology, but we know little about how competition between apex predators affects predation, the mechanism driving top-down forcing in ecosystems. We used long-term datasets from Scandinavia (Europe) and Yellowstone National Park (North America) to evaluate how grey wolf ( Canis lupus ) kill rate was affected by a sympatric apex predator, the brown bear ( Ursus arctos ). We used kill interval (i.e. the number of days between consecutive ungulate kills) as a proxy of kill rate. Although brown bears can monopolize wolf kills, we found no support in either study system for the common assumption that they cause wolves to kill more often. On the contrary, our results showed the opposite effect. In Scandinavia, wolf packs sympatric with brown bears killed less often than allopatric packs during both spring (after bear den emergence) and summer. Similarly, the presence of bears at wolf-killed ungulates was associated with wolves killing less often during summer in Yellowstone. The consistency in results between the two systems suggests that brown bear presence actually reduces wolf kill rate. Our results suggest that the influence of predation on lower trophic levels may depend on the composition of predator communities. © 2017 The Authors.

  7. Role of intraguild predation in aphidophagous guilds

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hemptinne, J. L.; Magro, A.; Saladin, C.; Dixon, Anthony F. G.

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 136, č. 3 (2012), s. 161-170 ISSN 0931-2048 Institutional support: RVO:67179843 Keywords : aphidophagous guilds * cost of intraguild predation * interspecific predation * intraguild predation * ladybird beetles * omnivory Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 1.560, year: 2012

  8. Risk of spider predation alters food web structure and reduces local herbivory in the field.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bucher, Roman; Menzel, Florian; Entling, Martin H

    2015-06-01

    Predators can indirectly enhance plant performance via herbivore suppression, with both prey consumption and changes in prey traits (e.g. changes in foraging behaviour) contributing to the reduction in herbivory. We performed a field experiment to determine the extent of such non-consumptive effects which consisted of repeatedly placing spiders (Pisaura mirabilis) on enclosed plants (Urtica dioica) for cue deposition. Control plants were enclosed in the same way but without spiders. After cue deposition, the enclosures were removed to allow arthropods to colonize the plants and feed on them. Arthropods were removed from the plants before the subsequent spider deposition or control enclosure. During six cycles of enclosure, we quantified leaf damage on the plants. After a seventh cycle, the colonizing arthropods were sampled to determine community composition in relation to the presence/absence of spider cues. We found that the presence of chemotactile spider cues reduced leaf damage by 50 %. In addition, spider cues led to changes in the arthropod community: smaller spiders avoided plants with spider cues. In contrast, the aphid-tending ant Myrmica rubra showed higher recruitment of workers on cue-bearing plants, possibly to protect aphids. Our results show that the risk of spider predation can reduce herbivory on wild plants and also demonstrate that non-consumptive effects can be particularly strong within the predator guild.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. Diversity of protists and bacteria determines predation performance and stability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saleem, Muhammad; Fetzer, Ingo; Harms, Hauke; Chatzinotas, Antonis

    2013-10-01

    Predation influences prey diversity and productivity while it effectuates the flux and reallocation of organic nutrients into biomass at higher trophic levels. However, it is unknown how bacterivorous protists are influenced by the diversity of their bacterial prey. Using 456 microcosms, in which different bacterial mixtures with equal initial cell numbers were exposed to single or multiple predators (Tetrahymena sp., Poterioochromonas sp. and Acanthamoeba sp.), we showed that increasing prey richness enhanced production of single predators. The extent of the response depended, however, on predator identity. Bacterial prey richness had a stabilizing effect on predator performance in that it reduced variability in predator production. Further, prey richness tended to enhance predator evenness in the predation experiment including all three protists predators (multiple predation experiment). However, we also observed a negative relationship between prey richness and predator production in multiple predation experiments. Mathematical analysis of potential ecological mechanisms of positive predator diversity-functioning relationships revealed predator complementarity as a factor responsible for both enhanced predator production and prey reduction. We suggest that the diversity at both trophic levels interactively determines protistan performance and might have implications in microbial ecosystem processes and services.

  12. 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

  13. Prozac in the water: Chronic fluoxetine exposure and predation risk interact to shape behaviors in an estuarine crab.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peters, Joseph R; Granek, Elise F; de Rivera, Catherine E; Rollins, Matthew

    2017-11-01

    Predators exert considerable top-down pressure on ecosystems by directly consuming prey or indirectly influencing their foraging behaviors and habitat use. Prey is, therefore, forced to balance predation risk with resource reward. A growing list of anthropogenic stressors such as rising temperatures and ocean acidification has been shown to influence prey risk behaviors and subsequently alter important ecosystem processes. Yet, limited attention has been paid to the effects of chronic pharmaceutical exposure on risk behavior or as an ecological stressor, despite widespread detection and persistence of these contaminants in aquatic environments. In the laboratory, we simulated estuarine conditions of the shore crab, Hemigrapsus oregonensis, and investigated whether chronic exposure (60 days) to field-detected concentrations (0, 3, and 30 ng/L) of the antidepressant fluoxetine affected diurnal and nocturnal risk behaviors in the presence of a predator, Cancer productus . We found that exposure to fluoxetine influenced both diurnal and nocturnal prey risk behaviors by increasing foraging and locomotor activity in the presence of predators, particularly during the day when these crabs normally stay hidden. Crabs exposed to fluoxetine were also more aggressive, with a higher frequency of agonistic interactions and increased mortality due to conflicts with conspecifics. These results suggest that exposure to field-detected concentrations of fluoxetine may alter the trade-off between resource acquisition and predation risk among crabs in estuaries. This fills an important data gap, highlighting how intra- and interspecific behaviors are altered by exposure to field concentrations of pharmaceuticals; such data more explicitly identify potential ecological impacts of emerging contaminants on aquatic ecosystems and can aid water quality management.

  14. The functional response of a generalist predator.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sophie Smout

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Predators can have profound impacts on the dynamics of their prey that depend on how predator consumption is affected by prey density (the predator's functional response. Consumption by a generalist predator is expected to depend on the densities of all its major prey species (its multispecies functional response, or MSFR, but most studies of generalists have focussed on their functional response to only one prey species. METHODOLOGY AND PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Using Bayesian methods, we fit an MSFR to field data from an avian predator (the hen harrier Circus cyaneus feeding on three different prey species. We use a simple graphical approach to show that ignoring the effects of alternative prey can give a misleading impression of the predator's effect on the prey of interest. For example, in our system, a "predator pit" for one prey species only occurs when the availability of other prey species is low. CONCLUSIONS AND SIGNIFICANCE: The Bayesian approach is effective in fitting the MSFR model to field data. It allows flexibility in modelling over-dispersion, incorporates additional biological information into the parameter priors, and generates estimates of uncertainty in the model's predictions. These features of robustness and data efficiency make our approach ideal for the study of long-lived predators, for which data may be sparse and management/conservation priorities pressing.

  15. Biological control of toxic cyanobacteria by mixotrophic predators: an experimental test of intraguild predation theory

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wilken, S.; Verspagen, J.M.H.; Naus-Wiezer, S.M.H.; Van Donk, E.; Huisman, Jef

    2014-01-01

    Intraguild predators both feed on and compete with their intraguild prey. In theory, intraguild predators can therefore be very effective as biological control agents of intraguild prey species, especially in productive environments. We investigated this hypothesis using the mixotrophic chrysophyte

  16. The increased risk of predation enhances cooperation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krams, Indrikis; Bērziņš, Arnis; Krama, Tatjana; Wheatcroft, David; Igaune, Kristīne; Rantala, Markus J.

    2010-01-01

    Theory predicts that animals in adverse conditions can decrease individual risks and increase long-term benefits by cooperating with neighbours. However, some empirical studies suggest that animals often focus on short-term benefits, which can reduce the likelihood that they will cooperate with others. In this experimental study, we tested between these two alternatives by evaluating whether increased predation risk (as a correlate of environmental adversity) enhances or diminishes the occurrence of cooperation in mobbing, a common anti-predator behaviour, among breeding pied flycatchers Ficedula hypoleuca. We tested whether birds would join their mobbing neighbours more often and harass a stuffed predator placed near their neighbours' nests more intensely in areas with a higher perceived risk of predation. Our results show that birds attended mobs initiated by their neighbours more often, approached the stuffed predator significantly more closely, and mobbed it at a higher intensity in areas where the perceived risk of predation was experimentally increased. In such high-risk areas, birds also were more often involved in between-pair cooperation. This study demonstrates the positive impact of predation risk on cooperation in breeding songbirds, which might help in explaining the emergence and evolution of cooperation. PMID:19846454

  17. Predator-induced reduction of freshwater carbon dioxide emissions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atwood, Trisha B.; Hammill, Edd; Greig, Hamish S.; Kratina, Pavel; Shurin, Jonathan B.; Srivastava, Diane S.; Richardson, John S.

    2013-03-01

    Predators can influence the exchange of carbon dioxide between ecosystems and the atmosphere by altering ecosystem processes such as decomposition and primary production, according to food web theory. Empirical knowledge of such an effect in freshwater systems is limited, but it has been suggested that predators in odd-numbered food chains suppress freshwater carbon dioxide emissions, and predators in even-numbered food chains enhance emissions. Here, we report experiments in three-tier food chains in experimental ponds, streams and bromeliads in Canada and Costa Rica in the presence or absence of fish (Gasterosteus aculeatus) and invertebrate (Hesperoperla pacifica and Mecistogaster modesta) predators. We monitored carbon dioxide fluxes along with prey and primary producer biomass. We found substantially reduced carbon dioxide emissions in the presence of predators in all systems, despite differences in predator type, hydrology, climatic region, ecological zone and level of in situ primary production. We also observed lower amounts of prey biomass and higher amounts of algal and detrital biomass in the presence of predators. We conclude that predators have the potential to markedly influence carbon dioxide dynamics in freshwater systems.

  18. Smelling out predators is innate in birds

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Amo, L.; Visser, M.E.; Van Oers, K.

    2011-01-01

    The role of olfaction for predation risk assessment remains barely explored in birds, although predator chemical cues could be useful in predator detection under low visibility conditions for many bird species. We examine whether Great Tits Parus major are able to use the odour of mustelids to

  19. Indirect effects of overfishing on Caribbean reefs: sponges overgrow reef-building corals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loh, Tse-Lynn; McMurray, Steven E; Henkel, Timothy P; Vicente, Jan; Pawlik, Joseph R

    2015-01-01

    Consumer-mediated indirect effects at the community level are difficult to demonstrate empirically. Here, we show an explicit indirect effect of overfishing on competition between sponges and reef-building corals from surveys of 69 sites across the Caribbean. Leveraging the large-scale, long-term removal of sponge predators, we selected overfished sites where intensive methods, primarily fish-trapping, have been employed for decades or more, and compared them to sites in remote or marine protected areas (MPAs) with variable levels of enforcement. Sponge-eating fishes (angelfishes and parrotfishes) were counted at each site, and the benthos surveyed, with coral colonies scored for interaction with sponges. Overfished sites had >3 fold more overgrowth of corals by sponges, and mean coral contact with sponges was 25.6%, compared with 12.0% at less-fished sites. Greater contact with corals by sponges at overfished sites was mostly by sponge species palatable to sponge predators. Palatable species have faster rates of growth or reproduction than defended sponge species, which instead make metabolically expensive chemical defenses. These results validate the top-down conceptual model of sponge community ecology for Caribbean reefs, as well as provide an unambiguous justification for MPAs to protect threatened reef-building corals. An unanticipated outcome of the benthic survey component of this study was that overfished sites had lower mean macroalgal cover (23.1% vs. 38.1% for less-fished sites), a result that is contrary to prevailing assumptions about seaweed control by herbivorous fishes. Because we did not quantify herbivores for this study, we interpret this result with caution, but suggest that additional large-scale studies comparing intensively overfished and MPA sites are warranted to examine the relative impacts of herbivorous fishes and urchins on Caribbean reefs.

  20. Trade-offs of predation and foraging explain sexual segregation in African buffalo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hay, C.T.; Cross, P.C.; Funston, P.J.

    2008-01-01

    1. Many studies have investigated why males and females segregate spatially in sexually dimorphic species. These studies have focused primarily on temperate zone ungulates in areas lacking intact predator communities, and few have directly assessed predation rates in different social environments. 2. Data on the movement, social affiliation, mortality and foraging of radio-collared African buffalo (Syncerus caffer) were collected from 2001-06 in the Kruger National Park, South Africa. 3. The vast majority of mortality events were due to lion (Panthera leo) predation, and the mortality hazard associated with being an adult male buffalo in a male-only 'bachelor' group was almost four times higher than for adult females in mixed herds. The mortality rates of adult males and females within mixed herds were not statistically different. Mortality sites of male and female buffalo were in areas of low visibility similar to those used by bachelor groups, while mixed herds tended to use more open habitats. 4. Males in bachelor groups ate similar or higher quality food (as indexed by percentage faecal nitrogen), and moved almost a third less distance per day compared with mixed herds. As a result, males in bachelor groups gained more body condition than did males in breeding herds. 5. Recent comparative analyses suggest the activity-budget hypothesis as a common underlying cause of social segregation. However, our intensive study, in an area with an intact predator community showed that male and female buffalo segregated by habitat and supported the predation-risk hypothesis. Male African buffalo appear to trade increased predation risk for additional energy gains in bachelor groups, which presumably leads to increased reproductive success. ?? 2008 The Authors.

  1. Predation on exotic zebra mussels by native fishes: Effects on predator and prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magoulick, D.D.; Lewis, L.C.

    2002-01-01

    1. Exotic zebra mussels, Dreissena polymorpha, occur in southern U.S. waterways in high densities, but little is known about the interaction between native fish predators and zebra mussels. Previous studies have suggested that exotic zebra mussels are low profitability prey items and native vertebrate predators are unlikely to reduce zebra mussel densities. We tested these hypotheses by observing prey use of fishes, determining energy content of primary prey species of fishes, and conducting predator exclusion experiments in Lake Dardanelle, Arkansas. 2. Zebra mussels were the primary prey eaten by 52.9% of blue catfish, Ictalurus furcatus; 48.2% of freshwater drum, Aplodinotus grunniens; and 100% of adult redear sunfish, Lepomis microlophus. Blue catfish showed distinct seasonal prey shifts, feeding on zebra mussels in summer and shad, Dorosoma spp., during winter. Energy content (joules g-1) of blue catfish prey (threadfin shad, Dorosoma petenense; gizzard shad, D. cepedianum; zebra mussels; and asiatic clams, Corbicula fluminea) showed a significant species by season interaction, but shad were always significantly greater in energy content than bivalves examined as either ash-free dry mass or whole organism dry mass. Fish predators significantly reduced densities of large zebra mussels (>5 mm length) colonising clay tiles in the summers of 1997 and 1998, but predation effects on small zebra mussels (???5 mm length) were less clear. 3. Freshwater drum and redear sunfish process bivalve prey by crushing shells and obtain low amounts of higher-energy food (only the flesh), whereas blue catfish lack a shell-crushing apparatus and ingest large amounts of low-energy food per unit time (bivalves with their shells). Blue catfish appeared to select the abundant zebra mussel over the more energetically rich shad during summer, then shifted to shad during winter when shad experienced temperature-dependent stress and mortality. Native fish predators can suppress adult zebra

  2. Predator confusion is sufficient to evolve swarming behaviour

    OpenAIRE

    Olson, Randal S.; Hintze, Arend; Dyer, Fred C.; Knoester, David B.; Adami, Christoph

    2013-01-01

    Swarming behaviours in animals have been extensively studied owing to their implications for the evolution of cooperation, social cognition and predator–prey dynamics. An important goal of these studies is discerning which evolutionary pressures favour the formation of swarms. One hypothesis is that swarms arise because the presence of multiple moving prey in swarms causes confusion for attacking predators, but it remains unclear how important this selective force is. Using an evolutionary mo...

  3. Anti-predator meshing may provide greater protection for sea turtle nests than predator removal.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julie M O'Connor

    Full Text Available The problem of how to protect sea turtle nests from terrestrial predators is of worldwide concern. On Queensland's southern Sunshine Coast, depredation of turtle nests by the introduced European red fox (Vulpes vulpes has been recorded as the primary terrestrial cause of egg and hatchling mortality. We investigated the impact of foxes on the nests of the loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta and occasional green turtle (Chelonia mydas over ten nesting seasons. Meshing of nests with fox exclusion devices (FEDs was undertaken in all years accompanied by lethal fox control in the first five-year period, but not in the second five-year period. Lethal fox control was undertaken in the study area from 2005 to February 2010, but foxes still breached 27% (range19-52% of turtle nests. In the second five-year period, despite the absence of lethal fox control, the average percentage of nests breached was less than 3% (range 0-4%. Comparison of clutch depredation rates in the two five-year periods demonstrated that continuous nest meshing may be more effective than lethal fox control in mitigating the impact of foxes on turtle nests. In the absence of unlimited resources available for the eradication of exotic predators, the use of FEDs and the support and resourcing of a dedicated volunteer base can be considered an effective turtle conservation tool on some beaches.

  4. Anti-predator meshing may provide greater protection for sea turtle nests than predator removal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Connor, Julie M; Limpus, Colin J; Hofmeister, Kate M; Allen, Benjamin L; Burnett, Scott E

    2017-01-01

    The problem of how to protect sea turtle nests from terrestrial predators is of worldwide concern. On Queensland's southern Sunshine Coast, depredation of turtle nests by the introduced European red fox (Vulpes vulpes) has been recorded as the primary terrestrial cause of egg and hatchling mortality. We investigated the impact of foxes on the nests of the loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta) and occasional green turtle (Chelonia mydas) over ten nesting seasons. Meshing of nests with fox exclusion devices (FEDs) was undertaken in all years accompanied by lethal fox control in the first five-year period, but not in the second five-year period. Lethal fox control was undertaken in the study area from 2005 to February 2010, but foxes still breached 27% (range19-52%) of turtle nests. In the second five-year period, despite the absence of lethal fox control, the average percentage of nests breached was less than 3% (range 0-4%). Comparison of clutch depredation rates in the two five-year periods demonstrated that continuous nest meshing may be more effective than lethal fox control in mitigating the impact of foxes on turtle nests. In the absence of unlimited resources available for the eradication of exotic predators, the use of FEDs and the support and resourcing of a dedicated volunteer base can be considered an effective turtle conservation tool on some beaches.

  5. Do Predation Rates on Artificial Nests Accurately Reflect Predation Rates on Natural Bird Nests?

    Science.gov (United States)

    David I. King; Richard M. DeGraaf; Curtice R. Griffin; Thomas J. Maier

    1999-01-01

    Artificial nests are widely used in avian field studies. However, it is unclear how well predation rates on artificial nests reflect predation rates on natural nests. Therefore, we compared survival rates of artificial nests (unused natural nests baited with House Sparrow eggs) with survival rates of active bird nests in the same habitat at the same sites. Survival...

  6. Birds as predators in tropical agroforestry systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Bael, Sunshine A; Philpott, Stacy M; Greenberg, Russell; Bichier, Peter; Barber, Nicholas A; Mooney, Kailen A; Gruner, Daniel S

    2008-04-01

    Insectivorous birds reduce arthropod abundances and their damage to plants in some, but not all, studies where predation by birds has been assessed. The variation in bird effects may be due to characteristics such as plant productivity or quality, habitat complexity, and/or species diversity of predator and prey assemblages. Since agroforestry systems vary in such characteristics, these systems provide a good starting point for understanding when and where we can expect predation by birds to be important. We analyze data from bird exclosure studies in forests and agroforestry systems to ask whether birds consistently reduce their arthropod prey base and whether bird predation differs between forests and agroforestry systems. Further, we focus on agroforestry systems to ask whether the magnitude of bird predation (1) differs between canopy trees and understory plants, (2) differs when migratory birds are present or absent, and (3) correlates with bird abundance and diversity. We found that, across all studies, birds reduce all arthropods, herbivores, carnivores, and plant damage. We observed no difference in the magnitude of bird effects between agroforestry systems and forests despite simplified habitat structure and plant diversity in agroforests. Within agroforestry systems, bird reduction of arthropods was greater in the canopy than the crop layer. Top-down effects of bird predation were especially strong during censuses when migratory birds were present in agroforestry systems. Importantly, the diversity of the predator assemblage correlated with the magnitude of predator effects; where the diversity of birds, especially migratory birds, was greater, birds reduced arthropod densities to a greater extent. We outline potential mechanisms for relationships between bird predator, insect prey, and habitat characteristics, and we suggest future studies using tropical agroforests as a model system to further test these areas of ecological theory.

  7. Protective effect of pregnancy in rural South Africa: questioning the concept of "indirect cause" of maternal death.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michel Garenne

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Measurement of the level and composition of maternal mortality depends on the definition used, with inconsistencies leading to inflated rates and invalid comparisons across settings. This study investigates the differences in risk of death for women in their reproductive years during and outside the maternal risk period (pregnancy, delivery, puerperium, focusing on specific causes of infectious, non-communicable and external causes of death after separating out direct obstetrical causes. METHODS: Data on all deaths of women aged 15-49 years that occurred in the Agincourt sub-district between 1992 and 2010 were obtained from the Agincourt health and socio-demographic surveillance system (HDSS located in rural South Africa. Causes of death were assessed using a validated verbal autopsy instrument. Analysis included 2170 deaths, of which 137 occurred during the maternal risk period. FINDINGS: Overall, women had significantly lower mortality during the maternal risk period than outside it (age-standardized RR = 0.75; 95% CI = 0.63-0.89. This was true in most age groups with the exception of adolescents aged 15-19 years where the risk of death was higher. Mortality from most causes, other than obstetric causes, was lower during the maternal risk period except for malaria, cardiovascular diseases and violence where there were no differences. Lower mortality was significant for HIV/AIDS (RR = 0.29, P<0.0001, cancers (RR = 0.10, P<0.023, and accidents (RR = 0, P<0.0001. INTERPRETATION: In this rural setting typical of much of Southern Africa, pregnancy was largely protective against the risk of death, most likely because of a strong selection effect amongst those women who conceived successfully. The concept of indirect cause of maternal death needs to be re-examined.

  8. 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.

  9. Indirect Control for Demand Side Management – A Conceptual Introduction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Heussen, Kai; You, Shi; Biegel, Benjamin

    2012-01-01

    The concept of “indirect control” has become a relevant discussion term in relation to activation distributed and small-scale demand and generation units to provide resources for power system balancing. The term and its association with price signals has, however caused some confusion as to its...... correct definition, either as a control or a market concept. This paper aims to provide a conceptual introduction to "indirect control" for management of small and distributed demand side resources. A review of control concepts and an analysis of "indirectness" features are provided to create a framework...... for systematic classification of indirect control strategies. The concepts developed then enable a discussion of control performance and valuation of direct- and indirect control strategies....

  10. Oil Spills and Dispersants Can Cause the Initiation of Potentially Harmful Dinoflagellate Blooms ("Red Tides").

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeda, Rodrigo; Cosgrove, Sarah; Buskey, Edward J

    2018-04-25

    After oil spills and dispersant applications the formation of red tides or harmful algal blooms (HABs) has been observed, which can cause additional negative impacts in areas affected by oil spills. However, the link between oil spills and HABs is still unknown. Here, we present experimental evidence that demonstrates a connection between oil spills and HABs. We determined the effects of oil, dispersant-treated oil, and dispersant alone on the structure of natural plankton assemblages in the Northern Gulf of Mexico. In coastal waters, large tintinnids and oligotrich ciliates, major grazers of phytoplankton, were negatively affected by the exposure to oil and dispersant, whereas bloom-forming dinoflagellates ( Prorocentrum texanum, P. triestinum, and Scrippsiella trochoidea) notably increased their concentration. The removal of key grazers due to oil and dispersant disrupts the predator-prey controls ("top-down controls") that normally function in plankton food webs. This disruption of grazing pressure opens a "loophole" that allows certain dinoflagellates with higher tolerance to oil and dispersants than their grazers to grow and form blooms when there are no growth limiting factors (e.g., nutrients). Therefore, oil spills and dispersants can act as disrupters of predator-prey controls in plankton food webs and as indirect inducers of potentially harmful dinoflagellate blooms.

  11. 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...

  12. Short- and long-term behavioural, physiological and stoichiometric responses to predation risk indicate chronic stress and compensatory mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Dievel, Marie; Janssens, Lizanne; Stoks, Robby

    2016-06-01

    Prey organisms are expected to use different short- and long-term responses to predation risk to avoid excessive costs. Contrasting both types of responses is important to identify chronic stress responses and possible compensatory mechanisms in order to better understand the full impact of predators on prey life history and population dynamics. Using larvae of the damselfly Enallagma cyathigerum, we contrasted the effects of short- and long-term predation risk, with special focus on consequences for body stoichiometry. Under short-term predation risk, larvae reduced growth rate, which was associated with a reduced food intake, increased metabolic rate and reduced glucose content. Under long-term predation risk, larvae showed chronic predator stress as indicated by persistent increases in metabolic rate and reduced food intake. Despite this, larvae were able to compensate for the short-term growth reduction under long-term predation risk by relying on physiological compensatory mechanisms, including reduced energy storage. Only under long-term predation risk did we observe an increase in body C:N ratio, as predicted under the general stress paradigm (GSP). Although this was caused by a predator-induced decrease in N content, there was no associated increase in C content. These stoichiometric changes could not be explained by GSP responses because, under chronic predation risk, there was no decrease in N-rich proteins or increase in C-rich fat and sugars; instead glycogen decreased. Our results highlight the importance of compensatory mechanisms and the value of explicitly integrating physiological mechanisms to obtain insights into the temporal dynamics of non-consumptive effects, including effects on body stoichiometry.

  13. Effects of subsidized predators, resource variability, and human population density on desert tortoise populations in the Mojave Desert, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esque, Todd C.; Nussear, Kenneth E.; Drake, K. Kristina; Walde, Andrew D.; Berry, Kristin H.; Averill-Murray, Roy C.; Woodman, A. Peter; Boarman, William I.; Medica, Phil A.; Mack, Jeremy S.; Heaton, Jill S.

    2010-01-01

    Understanding predator–prey relationships can be pivotal in the conservation of species. For 2 decades, desert tortoise Gopherus agassizii populations have declined, yet quantitative evidence regarding the causes of declines is scarce. In 2005, Ft. Irwin National Training Center, California, USA, implemented a translocation project including 2 yr of baseline monitoring of desert tortoises. Unusually high predation on tortoises was observed after translocation occurred. We conducted a retrospective analysis of predation and found that translocation did not affect the probability of predation: translocated, resident, and control tortoises all had similar levels of predation. However, predation rates were higher near human population concentrations, at lower elevation sites, and for smaller tortoises and females. Furthermore, high mortality rates were not limited to the National Training Center. In 2008, elevated mortality (as high as 43%) occurred throughout the listed range of the desert tortoise. Although no temporal prey base data are available for analysis from any of the study sites, we hypothesize that low population levels of typical coyote Canis latrans prey (i.e. jackrabbits Lepus californicus and other small animals) due to drought conditions influenced high predation rates in previous years. Predation may have been exacerbated in areas with high levels of subsidized predators. Many historical reports of increased predation, and our observation of a range-wide pattern, may indicate that high predation rates are more common than generally considered and may impact recovery of the desert tortoise throughout its range.

  14. 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...

  15. Modelling exposure of mammalian predators to anticoagulant rodenticide

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher John Topping

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Anticoagulant rodenticides (AR are a widespread and effective method of rodent control but there is concern about the impact these may have on non-target organisms, in particular secondary poisoning of rodent predators. Incidence and concentration of AR in free-living predators in Denmark is very high. We postulate that this is caused by widespread exposure due to widespread use of AR in Denmark in and around buildings. To investigate this theory a spatio-temporal model of AR use and mammalian predator distribution was created. This model was supported by data from an experimental study of mice as vectors of AR, and was used to evaluate likely impacts of restrictions imposed on AR use in Denmark banning the use of rodenticides for plant protection in woodlands and tree-crops. The model uses input based on frequencies and timings of baiting for rodent control for urban, rural and woodland locations and creates an exposure map based on spatio-temporal modelling of movement of mice-vectored AR (based on Apodemus flavicollis. Simulated predator territories are super-imposed over this exposure map to create an exposure index. Predictions from the model concur with field studies of AR prevalence both before and after the change in AR use. In most cases incidence of exposure to AR is predicted to be greater than 90%, although cessation of use in woodlots and Christmas tree plantations should reduce mean exposure concentrations. Model results suggest that the driver of high AR incidence in non-target small mammal predators is likely to be the pattern of use and not the distance AR is vectored. Reducing baiting frequency by 75% had different effects depending on the landscape simulated, but having a maximum of 12% reduction in exposure incidence, and in one landscape a maximum reduction of <2%. We discuss sources of uncertainty in the model and directions for future development of predictive models for environmental impact assessment of rodenticides. The

  16. Effects of seed density and proximity to refuge habitat on seed predation rates for a rare and a common Lupinus species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pardini, Eleanor A; Patten, Melissa V; Knight, Tiffany M

    2017-03-01

    Biotic interactions such as seed predation can play a role in explaining patterns of abundance among plant species. The effect of seed predation will depend on how the strength of predation differs across species and environments, and on the degree to which seed loss at one life-cycle phase increases fitness at another phase. Few studies have simultaneously quantified predispersal and postdispersal predation in co-occurring rare and common congeners, despite the value of estimating both for understanding causes of rarity. We quantified predispersal seed predation on the rare, herbaceous species Lupinus tidestromii (Fabaceae) and its common, shrubby congener L. chamissonis across multiple years in the same community. We experimentally measured postdispersal seed predation at two seed densities and locations near or far from an exotic grass housing high densities of deer mice ( Peromyscus maniculatus ), their primary, native seed predator. The common L. chamissonis had the lowest predispersal seed predation of the two lupine species, potentially because of its height: its high racemes received less predation than those low to the ground. By contrast, the same species experienced higher postdispersal seed predation, and at predators traveled long distances away from refuge habitat to consume their seeds. Across both plant species, mice preferentially predated high-density seed sources. Our results show differences in the magnitude and direction of seed predation between the species across different life-cycle phases. We demonstrated possible roles of proximity to refuge habitat, seed density, and seed size in these patterns. Congeneric comparisons would benefit from a comprehensive framework that considers seed predation across different life-cycle phases and the environmental context of predation. © 2017 Botanical Society of America.

  17. Nest predation risk and growth strategies of passerine species: grow fast or develop traits to escape risk?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Yi-Ru; Martin, Thomas E.

    2012-01-01

    Different body components are thought to trade off in their growth and development rates, but the causes for relative prioritization of any trait remains a critical question. Offspring of species at higher risk of predation might prioritize development of locomotor traits that facilitate escaping risky environments over growth of mass. We tested this possibility in 12 altricial passerine species that differed in their risk of nest predation. We found that rates of growth and development of mass, wings, and endothermy increased with nest predation risk across species. In particular, species with higher nest predation risk exhibited relatively faster growth of wings than of mass, fledged with relatively larger wing sizes and smaller mass, and developed endothermy earlier at relatively smaller mass. This differential development can facilitate both escape from predators and survival outside of the nest environment. Tarsus growth was not differentially prioritized with respect to nest predation risk, and instead all species achieved adult tarsus size by age of fledging. We also tested whether different foraging modes (aerial, arboreal, and ground foragers) might explain the variation of differential growth of locomotor modules, but we found that little residual variation was explained. Our results suggest that differences in nest predation risk among species are associated with relative prioritization of body components to facilitate escape from the risky nest environment.

  18. Inhibition between invasives: a newly introduced predator moderates the impacts of a previously established invasive predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffen, Blaine D; Guy, Travis; Buck, Julia C

    2008-01-01

    1. With continued globalization, species are being transported and introduced into novel habitats at an accelerating rate. Interactions between invasive species may provide important mechanisms that moderate their impacts on native species. 2. The European green crab Carcinus maenas is an aggressive predator that was introduced to the east coast of North America in the mid-1800 s and is capable of rapid consumption of bivalve prey. A newer invasive predator, the Asian shore crab Hemigrapsus sanguineus, was first discovered on the Atlantic coast in the 1980s, and now inhabits many of the same regions as C. maenas within the Gulf of Maine. Using a series of field and laboratory investigations, we examined the consequences of interactions between these predators. 3. Density patterns of these two species at different spatial scales are consistent with negative interactions. As a result of these interactions, C. maenas alters its diet to consume fewer mussels, its preferred prey, in the presence of H. sanguineus. Decreased mussel consumption in turn leads to lower growth rates for C. maenas, with potential detrimental effects on C. maenas populations. 4. Rather than an invasional meltdown, this study demonstrates that, within the Gulf of Maine, this new invasive predator can moderate the impacts of the older invasive predator.

  19. Invasion and predation in aquatic ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judith S. WEIS

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available This article reviews biological invasions in which predation (or its absence plays a major role in the success of the invader. Examples are described in which the invader out-competes native species for the same food, and cases in which the invader consumes valued native species. In many instances, better predator avoidance by the invasive species or the absence of predators in the new habitat contributes to the success of the invaders; in other cases native or introduced predators appear to be able to keep the invasive species in check. A relatively new management approach in the US is the idea of adding another trophic level – to have humans act as the predators and consume the invasive species. This approach is being utilized in Florida and throughout the Caribbean against the lionfish, but could be extended to other fishes, as well as to various invasive crustaceans and mollusks. This idea is controversial, and current regulations prohibiting the possession of individuals of the invasive species (e.g., mitten crabs or snakefish would preclude the development of a fishery for them [Current Zoology 57 (5: 613–624, 2011].

  20. Nest predation research: Recent findings and future perspectives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chalfoun, Anna D.; Ibanez-Alamo, J. D.; Magrath, R. D.; Schmidt, Kenneth A.; Thomson, R. L.; Oteyza, Juan C.; Haff, T. M.; Martin, T.E.

    2016-01-01

    Nest predation is a key source of selection for birds that has attracted increasing attention from ornithologists. The inclusion of new concepts applicable to nest predation that stem from social information, eavesdropping or physiology has expanded our knowledge considerably. Recent methodological advancements now allow focus on all three players within nest predation interactions: adults, offspring and predators. Indeed, the study of nest predation now forms a vital part of avian research in several fields, including animal behaviour, population ecology, evolution and conservation biology. However, within nest predation research there are important aspects that require further development, such as the comparison between ecological and evolutionary antipredator responses, and the role of anthropogenic change. We hope this review of recent findings and the presentation of new research avenues will encourage researchers to study this important and interesting selective pressure, and ultimately will help us to better understand the biology of birds.

  1. The contribution of an avian top predator to selection in prey species

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vedder, Oscar; Bouwhuis, Sandra; Sheldon, Ben C.

    Natural selection can vary in magnitude, form and direction, yet the causes of selection, and of variation in selection, are poorly understood. We quantified the effect of a key predator (Eurasian sparrowhawks) on selection on fledging body mass in two bird species (blue tits and great tits). By

  2. Relative effects of exophytic predation, endophytic predation, and intraspecific competition on a subcortical herbivore: consequences to the reproduction of Ips pini and Thanasimus dubius.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aukema, Brian H; Raffa, Kenneth F

    2002-12-01

    We used a laboratory assay to partition the effects of predation and intraspecific competition on the establishment, mating success, and brood development of an endophytic herbivore. We selected a system in which the same predator feeds both exophytically and endophytically on the same prey, to evaluate the role of herbivore feeding guild on predator numerical and functional responses. The bark beetle, Ips pini (Coleoptera: Scolytidae) reproduces within the stems of conifers. Males establish mating chambers under the bark, produce aggregation pheromones, and are subsequently joined by females that construct ovipositional galleries. Thanasimus dubius (Coleoptera: Cleridae) adults prey on adults alighting on the bark surface. T. dubius females then oviposit at the bark beetles' entrance sites, and their larvae prey on developing bark beetle larvae within the tree. We imposed a controlled 3×3 factorial design of prey and predator adult densities on red pine logs. Both predation and competition decreased I. pini reproduction. However, the per capita effect of predation was greater than competition, with one adult T. dubius reducing herbivore reproduction by an equivalent amount as four to five competing males and their harems. Increased densities of adult T. dubius on the plant surface reduced the number of prey captured per predator. Total predation on adults and larvae was similar. However, adult T. dubius on the plant surface ate approximately 18-35 times more I. pini per day than did their endophytic larvae. Within the plant, cannibalism among T. dubius, low herbivore densities, limited feeding times, and presumably the complex gallery architecture of I. pini reduced the number of predator progeny. The progeny of I. pini showed even sex ratios in the absence of predators, but were female biased when predators were present. We quantified a relatively narrow set of predator and prey densities that can generate replacement rates greater than one for this predator

  3. The Indirect cost of illness in Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joses Muthuri Kirigia

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Background: The current study estimated (a the indirect costs associated with non-fatal disability and premature death across a wide range of diseases and health conditions in Africa in 2015 and (b the potential savings that could be accrued if countries were to meet the 3 health targets of the substainable development goal (SDG compared to the costs under the status quo. Methods: This study used the lost output or human capital approach to quantify the gross domestic product (GDP losses associated with the disability-adjusted-life-years (DALYs lost due to all causes by age group as well as by country economic classification (Group 1: 10 high/upper-middle income countries; Group 2: 17 lower-middle income countries; and Group 3: 27 low income countries. Results: The expected indirect cost of the 704,765,879 DALYs lost in Africa in 2015 was Int$ 2,983,187,560,197. Of this amount, 25.17%, 57.84% and 16.99% were incurred by the economies of the countries comprising Group 1, Group 2 and Group 3, respectively. Of the total continental indirect cost, 36.9%, 10.5%, 13.7%, 17.0%, 7.6%, 6.8% and 7.5% were associated with people aged 0-4, 5-14, 15-29, 30-49, 50-59, 60-69 and 70 years or older, respectively. Most of the total indirect cost (56.61% was attributable to maternal conditions, AIDS, tuberculosis (TB, malaria, neglected tropicald diseases (NTDs, non-communicable diseases and traffic injuries. Approximately half (47% of this cost could be avoided (or saved every year if the 3 (health targets of the SDG were fully met. Conclusion: The study estimated the total indirect cost of illness due to all causes by age group and country economic classification. The annual indirect cost is substantial. The findings contained in this paper suggest that health system strengthening should focus on both rich and poor countries, people of all ages and specific disease categories.

  4. Disease prevalence and snail predation associated with swell-generated damage on the threatened coral, Acropora palmata (Lamarck

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Allan Joseph Bright

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Disturbances such as tropical storms cause coral mortality and reduce coral cover as a direct result of physical damage. Storms can be one of the most important disturbances in coral reef ecosystems, and it is crucial to understand their long-term impacts on coral populations. The primary objective of this study was to determine trends in disease prevalence and snail predation on damaged and undamaged colonies of the threatened coral species, Acropora palmata, following an episode of heavy ocean swells in the US Virgin Islands (USVI. At three sites on St. Thomas and St. John, colonies of A. palmata were surveyed monthly over one year following a series of large swells in March 2008 that fragmented 30 to 93% of colonies on monitored reefs. Post-disturbance surveys conducted from April 2008 through March 2009 showed that swell-generated damage to A. palmata caused negative indirect effects that compounded the initial direct effects of physical disturbance. During the 12 months after the swell event, white pox disease prevalence was 41% higher for colonies that sustained damage from the swells than for undamaged colonies (df = 207, p = 0.01 with greatest differences in disease prevalence occurring during warm water months. In addition, the corallivorous snail, Coralliophila abbreviata, was 46% more abundant on damaged corals than undamaged corals during the 12 months after the swell event (df = 207, p = 0.006.

  5. Disease prevalence and snail predation associated with swell-generated damage on the threatened coral, Acropora palmata (Lamarck)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bright, Allan J.; Rogers, Caroline S.; Brandt, Marilyn E.; Muller, Erinn; Smith, Tyler B.

    2016-01-01

    Disturbances such as tropical storms cause coral mortality and reduce coral cover as a direct result of physical damage. Storms can be one of the most important disturbances in coral reef ecosystems, and it is crucial to understand their long-term impacts on coral populations. The primary objective of this study was to determine trends in disease prevalence and snail predation on damaged and undamaged colonies of the threatened coral species, Acropora palmata, following an episode of heavy ocean swells in the US Virgin Islands (USVI). At three sites on St. Thomas and St. John, colonies of A. palmata were surveyed monthly over 1 year following a series of large swells in March 2008 that fragmented 30–93% of colonies on monitored reefs. Post-disturbance surveys conducted from April 2008 through March 2009 showed that swell-generated damage to A. palmata caused negative indirect effects that compounded the initial direct effects of physical disturbance. During the 12 months after the swell event, white pox disease prevalence was 41% higher for colonies that sustained damage from the swells than for undamaged colonies (df = 207, p = 0.01) with greatest differences in disease prevalence occurring during warm water months. In addition, the corallivorous snail, Coralliophila abbreviata, was 46% more abundant on damaged corals than undamaged corals during the 12 months after the swell event (df = 207, p = 0.006).

  6. Impact of insect growth regulators on the predator Ceraeochrysa cincta (Schneider) (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rugno, Gabriel Rodrigo; Zanardi, Odimar Zanuzo; Bajonero Cuervo, Johanna; de Morais, Matheus Rovere; Yamamoto, Pedro Takao

    2016-07-01

    The generalist predator Ceraeochrysa cincta (Schneider) (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae) is an important biological control agent of several arthropod pests in different agroecosystems. This study assessed the lethal and sublethal effects of six insect growth regulators sprayed on first-instar larvae of C. cincta. Lufenuron and diflubenzuron were highly harmful to first-instar larvae of C. cincta, causing 100 % of mortality before they reached the second instar. Buprofezin caused ~25 % mortality of the larvae and considerably reduced the fecundity and longevity of the insects, but substantially increased the proportion of females in the surviving population of C. cincta. Methoxyfenozide and tebufenozide did not affect the duration and survival of the immature stages, but methoxyfenozide significantly reduced the fecundity and longevity of the insects. Pyriproxyfen reduced the survival of the larval stage by 19.5 %, but did not affect the development, survival and reproduction of the surviving individuals. Based on reduction coefficient, the insecticides diflubenzuron and lufenuron were considered harmful to C. cincta, whereas buprofezin and methoxyfenozide were slightly harmful and tebufenozide and pyriproxyfen were harmless. The estimation of life-table parameters indicated that buprofezin and methoxyfenozide significantly reduced the R o , r and λ of C. cincta, whereas pyriproxyfen and tebufenozide caused no adverse effect on population parameters, indicating that these insecticides could be suitable for use in pest management programs towards the conservation and population increase of the predator in agroecosystems. However, more studies should be conducted to evaluate the compatibility of these insecticides with the predator C. cincta under semi-field and field conditions.

  7. 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.

  8. Effects of a ciliate protozoa predator on microbial communities in pitcher plant (Sarracenia purpurea leaves.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Taylor K Paisie

    Full Text Available The aquatic communities found within the water filled leaves of the pitcher plant, Sarracenia purpurea, have a simple trophic structure providing an ideal system to study microscale interactions between protozoan predators and their bacterial prey. In this study, replicate communities were maintained with and without the presence of the bactivorous protozoan, Colpoda steinii, to determine the effects of grazing on microbial communities. Changes in microbial (Archaea and Bacteria community structure were assessed using iTag sequencing of 16S rRNA genes. The microbial communities were similar with and without the protozoan predator, with>1000 species. Of these species, Archaea were negligible, with Bacteria comprising 99.99% of the microbial community. The Proteobacteria and Bacteroidetes were the most dominant phyla. The addition of a protozoan predator did not have a significant effect on microbial evenness nor richness. However, the presence of the protozoan did cause a significant shift in the relative abundances of a number of bacterial species. This suggested that bactivorous protozoan may target specific bacterial species and/or that certain bacterial species have innate mechanisms by which they evade predators. These findings help to elucidate the effect that trophic structure perturbations have on predator prey interactions in microbial systems.

  9. Selective predation and prey class behaviour as possible ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    To test these mechanisms, a study was conducted on Samara Private Game Reserve to investigate the potential impact cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus) predation has had on the kudu (Tragelaphus strepciseros) population. Kudu age and sex data were collected across both predator-present and predator-absent sections using ...

  10. Responses of urban crows to con- and hetero-specic alarm calls in predator and non-predator zoo enclosures.

    OpenAIRE

    BÍLÁ, Kateřina

    2017-01-01

    I investigated if urban crows respond to con- and heterospecific alarm signals in predator and non-predator contexts in enclosures in the ZOO of Vienna. Crows responded strongly to the crow and also jackdaw alarms in both types of contexts, but also responded to the singing of great tit (control) in the predator context. This suggests that crows are aware of the danger the wolf and bear represent but are generally very cautious at the exotic Zoo animals.

  11. Stabilization and complex dynamics in a predator-prey model with predator suffering from an infectious disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kooi, B.W.; Voorn, van G.A.K.; Das, pada Krishna

    2011-01-01

    We study the effects of a non-specified infectious disease of the predator on the dynamics a predator–prey system, by evaluating the dynamics of a three-dimensional model. The predator population in this (PSI) model is split into a susceptible and an unrecoverable infected population, while all

  12. Can Diopatra neapolitana (Annelida: Onuphidae) regenerate body damage caused by bait digging or predation?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pires, A.; Freitas, R.; Quintino, V.; Rodrigues, A. M.

    2012-09-01

    The regenerative ability of Diopatra neapolitana was evaluated under laboratory conditions following nine experimental amputation levels: before the beginning of the branchiae (chaetiger 3 or 4), in the branchial region, at chaetigers 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35 and 40 and after the branchiae, at chaetigers 45-55. Specimens amputated at the 20th chaetiger were not able to regenerate and did not survive. The posterior portion of the specimens amputated up to chaetiger 15, regenerated the anterior part but the anterior ends were unable to survive. The anterior end of the specimens amputated at and beyond the 25th chaetiger regenerated the posterior part but the posterior ends were not able to regenerate an anterior part. Percent survival was directly related to the number of branchial segments left in the regenerating specimen and reached 100% only when the specimens were amputated beyond the branchial region. These results indicate that the species has regenerative ability and should survive the loss of a few anterior chaetigers, namely caused by predation. However, the results also indicate that bait digging could impair the survival of the posterior part remaining in the tube, as usually more than 20 chaetigers are harvested by bait collectors. Regarding field-collected specimens, D. neapolitana was found regenerating a mean of 9.0 ± 2.51 chaetigers, and Diopatra marocensis 7.5 ± 1.93 chaetigers, at the anterior end. The higher percentage of field-collected specimens showing regeneration of the anterior end belonged to D. marocensis. Only very few specimens, for both species, were found regenerating the posterior part of the body.

  13. A meta-analysis of predation risk effects on pollinator behaviour.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gustavo Q Romero

    Full Text Available Flower-visiting animals are constantly under predation risk when foraging and hence might be expected to evolve behavioural adaptations to avoid predators. We reviewed the available published and unpublished data to assess the overall effects of predators on pollinator behaviour and to examine sources of variation in these effects. The results of our meta-analysis showed that predation risk significantly decreased flower visitation rates (by 36% and time spent on flowers (by 51% by pollinators. The strength of the predator effects depended neither on predator taxa and foraging mode (sit-and-wait or active hunters nor on pollinator lifestyle (social vs. solitary. However, predator effects differed among pollinator taxa: predator presence reduced flower visitation rates and time spent on flowers by Squamata, Lepidoptera and Hymenoptera, but not by Diptera. Furthermore, larger pollinators showed weaker responses to predation risk, probably because they are more difficult to capture. Presence of live crab spiders on flowers had weaker effects on pollinator behaviour than presence of dead or artificial crab spiders or other objects (e.g. dead bees, spheres, suggesting that predator crypsis may be effective to some extent. These results add to a growing consensus on the importance of considering both predator and pollinator characteristics from a community perspective.

  14. A meta-analysis of predation risk effects on pollinator behaviour.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romero, Gustavo Q; Antiqueira, Pablo A P; Koricheva, Julia

    2011-01-01

    Flower-visiting animals are constantly under predation risk when foraging and hence might be expected to evolve behavioural adaptations to avoid predators. We reviewed the available published and unpublished data to assess the overall effects of predators on pollinator behaviour and to examine sources of variation in these effects. The results of our meta-analysis showed that predation risk significantly decreased flower visitation rates (by 36%) and time spent on flowers (by 51%) by pollinators. The strength of the predator effects depended neither on predator taxa and foraging mode (sit-and-wait or active hunters) nor on pollinator lifestyle (social vs. solitary). However, predator effects differed among pollinator taxa: predator presence reduced flower visitation rates and time spent on flowers by Squamata, Lepidoptera and Hymenoptera, but not by Diptera. Furthermore, larger pollinators showed weaker responses to predation risk, probably because they are more difficult to capture. Presence of live crab spiders on flowers had weaker effects on pollinator behaviour than presence of dead or artificial crab spiders or other objects (e.g. dead bees, spheres), suggesting that predator crypsis may be effective to some extent. These results add to a growing consensus on the importance of considering both predator and pollinator characteristics from a community perspective.

  15. Agrochemicals indirectly increase survival of E. coli O157:H7 and indicator bacteria by reducing ecosystem services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Staley, Zachery R; Rohr, Jason R; Senkbeil, Jacob K; Harwood, Valerie J

    Storm water and agricultural runoff frequently contain agrochemicals, fecal indicator bacteria (FIB), and zoonotic pathogens. Entry of such contaminants into aquatic ecosystems may affect ecology and human health. This study tested the hypothesis that the herbicide atrazine and the fungicide chlorothalonil indirectly affect the survival of FIB (Escherichia coli and Enterococcus faecalis) and a pathogen (E. coli O157:H7) by altering densities of protozoan predators or by altering competition from autochthonous bacteria. Streptomycin-resistant E. coli, En. faecalis, and E. coli O157:H7 were added to microcosms composed of Florida river water containing natural protozoan and bacterial populations. FIB, pathogen, and protozoan densities were monitored over six days. Known metabolic inhibitors, cycloheximide and streptomycin, were used to inhibit autochthonous protozoa or bacteria, respectively. The inhibitors made it possible to isolate the effects of predation or competition on survival of allochthonous bacteria, and each treatment increased the survival of FIB and pathogens. Chlorothalonil's effect was similar to that of cycloheximide, significantly reducing protozoan densities and elevating densities of FIB and pathogens relative to the control. Atrazine treatment did not affect protozoan densities, but, through an effect on competition, resulted in significantly greater densities of En. faecalis and E. coli O157:H7. Hence, by reducing predaceous protozoa and bacterial competitors that facilitate purifying water bodies of FIBs and human pathogens, chlorothalonil and atrazine indirectly diminished an ecosystem service of fresh water.

  16. Predation on artificial nests by marmosets of the genus Callithrix (Primates, Platyrrhini in a Cerrado fragment in Southeastern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcos Vinícius de Almeida

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Although the causes of decline in bird populations in forest fragments are not well known, nest predation seems to play a major role in these events. A way to estimate the relative importance of predation for the reproduction of native birds is the use of artificial nests. Here, there is a report on the high rates of predation on artificial nests by two marmoset species from the genus Callithrix, C. pennicillata and C. jacchus, as well as their hybrid derivatives, in a Cerrado fragment in the state of Sao Paulo, Brazil. By means of artificial nests and quail eggs filled with paraffin, it was possible to identify the marmosets as predators through the bite pattern left on the paraffin. The results suggest a possible occurrence of predation on natural nests. Further studies involving the monitoring of natural nests will be able to confirm the role of marmosets in the decline of bird populations in the study area.

  17. Predator removal and nesting waterbird success at San Francisco Bay, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meckstroth, A.M.; Miles, A.K.

    2005-01-01

    The efficacy of long-term predator removal in urbanized areas is poorly understood. The impact of predation on ground-nesting waterbirds, as well as predator abundance and composition in predator removal versus non-removal or reference sites were examined at South San Francisco Bay. The success of natural nests and predator activity was monitored using track plates, trip cameras, wire haircatchers and simulated nests. Removal sites had higher nest densities, but lower hatching success than reference sites. Predator composition and abundance were not different at the removal and reference sites for any predator other than feral Cat (Felis domesticus). Striped Skunk (Mephitis mephitis) comprised the majority (84%) of predators removed, yet remained the most abundant predators in removal and reference sites. Urban environments provide supplemental food that may influence skunks and other nest predators to immigrate into vacancies created by predator removal. Based on the findings from this study, predator removal should be applied intensively over a larger geographic area in order to be a viable management strategy for some mammalian species in urbanized areas.

  18. Gender inequality in predispersal seed predation contributes to female seed set advantage in a gynodioecious species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, Gretel L; Brody, Alison K

    2015-05-01

    interactions with both pollinators and seed predators affect reproductive success, floral enemies can cause inequality in seed set between genders. The next step is to understand how the seed set advantage affects long-term fitness and persistence of females in gynodioecious populations.

  19. Size-selective predation and predator-induced life-history shifts alter the outcome of competition between planktonic grazers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hülsmann, S.; Rinke, K.; Mooij, W.M.

    2011-01-01

    1.We studied the effect of size-selective predation on the outcome of competition between two differently sized prey species in a homogenous environment. 2. Using a physiologically structured population model, we calculated equilibrium food concentrations for a range of predation scenarios defined

  20. Space-time clusters for early detection of grizzly bear predation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kermish-Wells, Joseph; Massolo, Alessandro; Stenhouse, Gordon B; Larsen, Terrence A; Musiani, Marco

    2018-01-01

    Accurate detection and classification of predation events is important to determine predation and consumption rates by predators. However, obtaining this information for large predators is constrained by the speed at which carcasses disappear and the cost of field data collection. To accurately detect predation events, researchers have used GPS collar technology combined with targeted site visits. However, kill sites are often investigated well after the predation event due to limited data retrieval options on GPS collars (VHF or UHF downloading) and to ensure crew safety when working with large predators. This can lead to missing information from small-prey (including young ungulates) kill sites due to scavenging and general site deterioration (e.g., vegetation growth). We used a space-time permutation scan statistic (STPSS) clustering method (SaTScan) to detect predation events of grizzly bears ( Ursus arctos ) fitted with satellite transmitting GPS collars. We used generalized linear mixed models to verify predation events and the size of carcasses using spatiotemporal characteristics as predictors. STPSS uses a probability model to compare expected cluster size (space and time) with the observed size. We applied this method retrospectively to data from 2006 to 2007 to compare our method to random GPS site selection. In 2013-2014, we applied our detection method to visit sites one week after their occupation. Both datasets were collected in the same study area. Our approach detected 23 of 27 predation sites verified by visiting 464 random grizzly bear locations in 2006-2007, 187 of which were within space-time clusters and 277 outside. Predation site detection increased by 2.75 times (54 predation events of 335 visited clusters) using 2013-2014 data. Our GLMMs showed that cluster size and duration predicted predation events and carcass size with high sensitivity (0.72 and 0.94, respectively). Coupling GPS satellite technology with clusters using a program based

  1. Consequences of the size structure of fish populations for their effects on a generalist avian predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kloskowski, Janusz

    2011-06-01

    Size-structured interspecific interactions can shift between predation and competition, depending on ontogenetic changes in size relationships. I examined the effects of common carp (Cyprinus carpio), an omnivorous fish, on the reproductive success of the red-necked grebe (Podiceps grisegena), an avian gape-limited predator, along a fish size gradient created by stocking distinct age-cohorts in seminatural ponds. Young-of-the-year (0+) carp were an essential food source for young grebes. Only adult birds were able to consume 1-year-old (1+) fish, while 2-year-old (2+) fish attained a size refuge from grebes. Amphibian larvae were the principal alternative prey to fish, followed by macroinvertebrates, but the abundance of both dramatically decreased along the carp size gradient. Fledging success was 2.8 times greater in ponds with 0+ versus 1+ carp; in ponds with 1+ carp, chicks received on average 2.6-3 times less prey biomass from their parents, and over 1/3 of broods suffered total failure. Breeding birds avoided settling on 2+ ponds. These results show that changes in prey fish size structure can account for shifts from positive trophic effects on the avian predator to a negative impact on the predator's alternative resources. However, competition did not fully explain the decrease in grebe food resources in the presence of large fish, as carp and grebes overlapped little in diet. In experimental cages, 1+ carp totally eliminated young larvae of amphibians palatable to fish. In field conditions, breeding adults of palatable taxa avoided ponds with 1+ and older carp. Non-trophic interactions such as habitat selection by amphibians or macroinvertebrates to avoid large fish may provide an indirect mechanism strengthening the adverse bottom-up effects of fish on birds.

  2. Selective bird predation on the peppered moth: the last experiment of Michael Majerus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, L M; Grant, B S; Saccheri, I J; Mallet, J

    2012-08-23

    Colour variation in the peppered moth Biston betularia was long accepted to be under strong natural selection. Melanics were believed to be fitter than pale morphs because of lower predation at daytime resting sites on dark, sooty bark. Melanics became common during the industrial revolution, but since 1970 there has been a rapid reversal, assumed to have been caused by predators selecting against melanics resting on today's less sooty bark. Recently, these classical explanations of melanism were attacked, and there has been general scepticism about birds as selective agents. Experiments and observations were accordingly carried out by Michael Majerus to address perceived weaknesses of earlier work. Unfortunately, he did not live to publish the results, which are analysed and presented here by the authors. Majerus released 4864 moths in his six-year experiment, the largest ever attempted for any similar study. There was strong differential bird predation against melanic peppered moths. Daily selection against melanics (s ≈ 0.1) was sufficient in magnitude and direction to explain the recent rapid decline of melanism in post-industrial Britain. These data provide the most direct evidence yet to implicate camouflage and bird predation as the overriding explanation for the rise and fall of melanism in moths.

  3. Molecular forensics in avian conservation: a DNA-based approach for identifying mammalian predators of ground-nesting birds and eggs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hopken, Matthew W; Orning, Elizabeth K; Young, Julie K; Piaggio, Antoinette J

    2016-01-07

    The greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) is a ground-nesting bird from the Northern Rocky Mountains and a species at risk of extinction in in multiple U.S. states and Canada. Herein we report results from a proof of concept that mitochondrial and nuclear DNAs from mammalian predator saliva could be non-invasively collected from depredated greater sage-grouse eggshells and carcasses and used for predator species identification. Molecular forensic approaches have been applied to identify predators from depredated remains as one strategy to better understand predator-prey dynamics and guide management strategies. This can aid conservation efforts by correctly identifying predators most likely to impact threatened and endangered species. DNA isolated from non-invasive samples around nesting sites (e.g. fecal or hair samples) is one method that can increase the success and accuracy of predator species identification when compared to relying on nest remains alone. Predator saliva DNA was collected from depredated eggshells and carcasses using swabs. We sequenced two partial fragments of two mitochondrial genes and obtained microsatellite genotypes using canid specific primers for species and individual identification, respectively. Using this multilocus approach we were able to identify predators, at least down to family, from 11 out of 14 nests (79%) and three out of seven carcasses (47%). Predators detected most frequently were canids (86%), while other taxa included rodents, a striped skunk, and cattle. We attempted to match the genotypes of individual coyotes obtained from eggshells and carcasses with those obtained from fecal samples and coyotes collected in the areas, but no genotype matches were found. Predation is a main cause of nest failure in ground-nesting birds and can impact reproduction and recruitment. To inform predator management for ground-nesting bird conservation, accurate identification of predator species is necessary. Considering

  4. Tests of landscape influence: nest predation and brood parasitism in fragmented ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joshua J. Tewksbury; Lindy Garner; Shannon H. Garner; John D. Lloyd; Victoria A. Saab; Thomas E. Martin

    2006-01-01

    The effects of landscape fragmentation on nest predation and brood parasitism, the two primary causes of avian reproductive failure, have been difficult to generalize across landscapes, yet few studies have clearly considered the context and spatial scale of fragmentation. Working in two river systems fragmented by agricultural and rural-housing development, we tracked...

  5. Local and landscape drivers of predation services in urban gardens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Philpott, Stacy M; Bichier, Peter

    2017-04-01

    In agroecosystems, local and landscape features, as well as natural enemy abundance and richness, are significant predictors of predation services that may result in biological control of pests. Despite the increasing importance of urban gardening for provisioning of food to urban populations, most urban gardeners suffer from high pest problems, and have little knowledge about how to manage their plots to increase biological control services. We examined the influence of local, garden scale (i.e., herbaceous and arboreal vegetation abundance and diversity, ground cover) and landscape (i.e., landscape diversity and surrounding land use types) characteristics on predation services provided by naturally occurring predators in 19 urban gardens in the California central coast. We introduced sentinel pests (moth eggs and larvae and pea aphids) onto greenhouse-raised plants taken to gardens and assigned to open or bagged (predator exclosure) treatments. We found high predation rates with between 40% and 90% of prey items removed in open treatments. Predation services varied with local and landscape factors, but significant predictors differed by prey species. Predation of eggs and aphids increased with vegetation complexity in gardens, but larvae predation declined with vegetation complexity. Smaller gardens experienced higher predation services, likely due to increases in predator abundance in smaller gardens. Several ground cover features influenced predation services. In contrast to patterns in rural agricultural landscapes, predation on aphids declined with increases in landscape diversity. In sum, we report the relationships between several local management factors, as well as landscape surroundings, and implications for garden management. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  6. Pasta Predation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waugh, Michael L.

    1986-01-01

    Presents a predator-prey simulation which involves students in collecting data, solving problems, and making predictions on the evolution of prey populations. Provides directives on how to perform the chi-square test and also includes an Applesoft BASK program that performs the calculations. (ML)

  7. Alien vs. predator: bacterial challenge alters coral microbiomes unless controlled by Halobacteriovorax predators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rory M. Welsh

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Coral microbiomes are known to play important roles in organismal health, response to environmental stress, and resistance to disease. The coral microbiome contains diverse assemblages of resident bacteria, ranging from defensive and metabolic symbionts to opportunistic bacteria that may turn harmful in compromised hosts. However, little is known about how these bacterial interactions influence the mechanism and controls of overall structure, stability, and function of the microbiome. We sought to test how coral microbiome dynamics were affected by interactions between two bacteria: Vibrio coralliilyticus, a known temperature-dependent pathogen of some corals, and Halobacteriovorax, a unique bacterial predator of Vibrio and other gram-negative bacteria. We challenged reef-building coral with V. coralliilyticus in the presence or absence of Halobacteriovorax predators, and monitored microbial community dynamics with 16S rRNA gene profiling time-series. Vibrio coralliilyticus inoculation increased the mean relative abundance of Vibrios by greater than 35% from the 4 to 8 hour time point, but not in the 24 & 32 hour time points. However, strong secondary effects of the Vibrio challenge were also observed for the rest of the microbiome such as increased richness (observed species, and reduced stability (increased beta-diversity. Moreover, after the transient increase in Vibrios, two lineages of bacteria (Rhodobacterales and Cytophagales increased in coral tissues, suggesting that V. coralliilyticus challenge opens niche space for these known opportunists. Rhodobacterales increased from 6.99% (±0.05 SEM to a maximum mean relative abundance of 48.75% (±0.14 SEM in the final time point and Cytophagales from <0.001% to 3.656%. Halobacteriovorax predators are commonly present at low-abundance on coral surfaces. Based on the keystone role of predators in many ecosystems, we hypothesized that Halobacteriovorax predators might help protect corals by

  8. Response of predators to Western Sandpiper nest exclosures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niehaus, Amanda C.; Ruthrauff, Daniel R.; McCaffery, Brian J.

    2004-01-01

    In 2001, predator exclosures were used to protect nests of the Western Sandpiper (Calidris mauri) in western Alaska. During the exclosure experiment, nest contents in exclosures had significantly higher daily survival rates than control nests, however, late in the study predators began to cue in on exclosures and predate the nest contents. An Arctic Fox (Alopex lagopus) dug under one exclosure and took the newly hatched chicks, and Long-tailed Jaegers (Stercorarius longicaudus) learned to associate exclosures with active nests and repeatedly visited them. The jaegers attempted to gain access to exclosed nests and pursued adult sandpipers as they emerged from the exclosures. The exclosures were removed to reduce potential mortality to adult and young sandpipers, but subsequently, post-exclosure nests had lower daily survival rates than controls during the same time period. Predation of post-exclosure eggs and chicks highlighted the lasting influence of the exclosure treatment on offspring survival because predators probably remembered nest locations. Researchers are urged to use caution when considering use of predator exclosures in areas where jaegers occur.

  9. Testing for non-target effects of spinosad on twospotted spider mites and their predator Phytoseiulus persimilis under greenhouse conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holt, Kiffnie M; Opit, George P; Nechols, James R; Margolies, David C

    2006-01-01

    The compatibility of the selective insecticide spinosad (Conserve SC), at rates recommended for thrips control in greenhouses, with release of the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis Athias-Henriot (Acari: Phytoseiidae) to control spider mites, was investigated in a crop of ivy geranium Pelargonium peltatum, cultivar 'Amethyst 96.' Plants were inoculated with twospotted spider mites, Tetranychus urticae Koch (Acari: Tetranychidae), 2 weeks before treatments were applied. There were three treatment variables, each at two levels: predators (released or not), spray application (water or Conserve SC at 2 ml/3.79 l), and timing of spray (1 day before or after predators were released). Twospotted spider mite populations then were sampled twice each week over a three-week period. The application or timing of spinosad had no effect on the ability of the predator to reduce the population of spider mites. Spider mite populations in the no-predator treatment continued to expand over the course of the experiment, while those in the predator-release treatment declined. We conclude that P. persimilis can be used in conjunction with spinosad on ivy geraniums without causing obvious detrimental effects to this predator or leading to a reduction in biological control.

  10. Development of a System wide Predator Control Program: Stepwise Implementation of a Predation Index, Predator Control Fisheries, and Evaluation Plan in the Columbia River Basin; Section II: Evaluation; 1996 Annual Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Young, Franklin R.

    1997-01-01

    Predator control fisheries aimed at reducing predation on juvenile salmonids by northern squawfish (Ptychocheilus oregonensis) were implemented for the seventh consecutive year in the mainstream Columbia and Snake rivers

  11. 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.

  12. Effects of maternal nutrition, resource use and multi-predator risk on neonatal white-tailed deer survival.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jared F Duquette

    Full Text Available Growth of ungulate populations is typically most sensitive to survival of neonates, which in turn is influenced by maternal nutritional condition and trade-offs in resource selection and avoidance of predators. We assessed whether resource use, multi-predator risk, maternal nutritional effects, hiding cover, or interactions among these variables best explained variation in daily survival of free-ranging neonatal white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus during their post-partum period (14 May-31 Aug in Michigan, USA. We used Cox proportional hazards mixed-effects models to assess survival related to covariates of resource use, composite predation risk of 4 mammalian predators, fawn body mass at birth, winter weather, and vegetation growth phenology. Predation, particularly from coyotes (Canis latrans, was the leading cause of mortality; however, an additive model of non-ideal resource use and maternal nutritional effects explained 71% of the variation in survival. This relationship suggested that dams selected areas where fawns had poor resources, while greater predation in these areas led to additive mortalities beyond those related to resource use alone. Also, maternal nutritional effects suggested that severe winters resulted in dams producing smaller fawns, which decreased their likelihood of survival. Fawn resource use appeared to reflect dam avoidance of lowland forests with poor forage and greater use by wolves (C. lupus, their primary predator. While this strategy led to greater fawn mortality, particularly by coyotes, it likely promoted the life-long reproductive success of dams because many reached late-age (>10 years old and could have produced multiple generations of fawns. Studies often link resource selection and survival of ungulates, but our results suggested that multiple factors can mediate that relationship, including multi-predator risk. We emphasize the importance of identifying interactions among biological and

  13. Competition, predation, and migration : Individual choice patterns of Serengeti migrants captured by hierarchical models

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hopcraft, J. Grant C.; Morales, J. M.; Beyer, H. L.; Borner, Markus; Mwangomo, Ephraim; Sinclair, A. R. E.; Olff, Han; Haydon, Daniel T.

    Large-herbivore migrations occur across gradients of food quality or food abundance that are generally determined by underlying geographic patterns in rainfall, elevation, or latitude, in turn causing variation in the degree of interspecific competition and the exposure to predators. However, the

  14. Assessing predation risk: optimal behaviour and rules of thumb.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Welton, Nicky J; McNamara, John M; Houston, Alasdair I

    2003-12-01

    We look at a simple model in which an animal makes behavioural decisions over time in an environment in which all parameters are known to the animal except predation risk. In the model there is a trade-off between gaining information about predation risk and anti-predator behaviour. All predator attacks lead to death for the prey, so that the prey learns about predation risk by virtue of the fact that it is still alive. We show that it is not usually optimal to behave as if the current unbiased estimate of the predation risk is its true value. We consider two different ways to model reproduction; in the first scenario the animal reproduces throughout its life until it dies, and in the second scenario expected reproductive success depends on the level of energy reserves the animal has gained by some point in time. For both of these scenarios we find results on the form of the optimal strategy and give numerical examples which compare optimal behaviour with behaviour under simple rules of thumb. The numerical examples suggest that the value of the optimal strategy over the rules of thumb is greatest when there is little current information about predation risk, learning is not too costly in terms of predation, and it is energetically advantageous to learn about predation. We find that for the model and parameters investigated, a very simple rule of thumb such as 'use the best constant control' performs well.

  15. Putting prey and predator into the CO2 equation--qualitative and quantitative effects of ocean acidification on predator-prey interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrari, Maud C O; McCormick, Mark I; Munday, Philip L; Meekan, Mark G; Dixson, Danielle L; Lonnstedt, Öona; Chivers, Douglas P

    2011-11-01

    Little is known about the impact of ocean acidification on predator-prey dynamics. Herein, we examined the effect of carbon dioxide (CO(2)) on both prey and predator by letting one predatory reef fish interact for 24 h with eight small or large juvenile damselfishes from four congeneric species. Both prey and predator were exposed to control or elevated levels of CO(2). Mortality rate and predator selectivity were compared across CO(2) treatments, prey size and species. Small juveniles of all species sustained greater mortality at high CO(2) levels, while large recruits were not affected. For large prey, the pattern of prey selectivity by predators was reversed under elevated CO(2). Our results demonstrate both quantitative and qualitative consumptive effects of CO(2) on small and larger damselfish recruits respectively, resulting from CO(2)-induced behavioural changes likely mediated by impaired neurological function. This study highlights the complexity of predicting the effects of climate change on coral reef ecosystems. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/CNRS.

  16. Mixed-mode oscillations and chaos in a prey-predator system with dormancy of predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuwamura, Masataka; Chiba, Hayato

    2009-12-01

    It is shown that the dormancy of predators induces mixed-mode oscillations and chaos in the population dynamics of a prey-predator system under certain conditions. The mixed-mode oscillations and chaos are shown to bifurcate from a coexisting equilibrium by means of the theory of fast-slow systems. These results may help to find experimental conditions under which one can demonstrate chaotic population dynamics in a simple phytoplankton-zooplankton (-resting eggs) community in a microcosm with a short duration.

  17. Predator-induced changes of female mating preferences: innate and experiential effects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Indy Jeane

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In many species males face a higher predation risk than females because males display elaborate traits that evolved under sexual selection, which may attract not only females but also predators. Females are, therefore, predicted to avoid such conspicuous males under predation risk. The present study was designed to investigate predator-induced changes of female mating preferences in Atlantic mollies (Poecilia mexicana. Males of this species show a pronounced polymorphism in body size and coloration, and females prefer large, colorful males in the absence of predators. Results In dichotomous choice tests predator-naïve (lab-reared females altered their initial preference for larger males in the presence of the cichlid Cichlasoma salvini, a natural predator of P. mexicana, and preferred small males instead. This effect was considerably weaker when females were confronted visually with the non-piscivorous cichlid Vieja bifasciata or the introduced non-piscivorous Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus. In contrast, predator experienced (wild-caught females did not respond to the same extent to the presence of a predator, most likely due to a learned ability to evaluate their predators' motivation to prey. Conclusions Our study highlights that (a predatory fish can have a profound influence on the expression of mating preferences of their prey (thus potentially affecting the strength of sexual selection, and females may alter their mate choice behavior strategically to reduce their own exposure to predators. (b Prey species can evolve visual predator recognition mechanisms and alter their mate choice only when a natural predator is present. (c Finally, experiential effects can play an important role, and prey species may learn to evaluate the motivational state of their predators.

  18. Bagworm bags as portable armour against invertebrate predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sugiura, Shinji

    2016-01-01

    Some animals have evolved the use of environmental materials as "portable armour" against natural enemies. Portable bags that bagworm larvae (Lepidoptera: Psychidae) construct using their own silk and plant parts are generally believed to play an important role as a physical barrier against natural enemies. However, no experimental studies have tested the importance of bags as portable armour against predators. To clarify the defensive function, I studied the bagworm Eumeta minuscula and a potential predator Calosoma maximoviczi (Coleoptera: Carabidae). Under laboratory conditions, all bagworm larvae were attacked by carabid adults, but successfully defended themselves against the predators' mandibles using their own bags. The portable bags, which are composed mainly of host plant twigs, may function as a physical barrier against predator mandibles. To test this hypothesis, I removed the twig bags and replaced some with herb leaf bags; all bag-removed larvae were easily caught and predated by carabids, while all bag-replaced larvae could successfully defend themselves against carabid attacks. Therefore, various types of portable bags can protect bagworm larvae from carabid attacks. This is the first study to test the defensive function of bagworm portable bags against invertebrate predators.

  19. Spizaetus hawk-eagles as predators of arboreal colobines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fam, S D; Nijman, V

    2011-04-01

    The predation pressure put on primates by diurnal birds of prey differs greatly between continents. Africa and South America have specialist raptors (e.g. crowned hawk-eagle Stephanoaetus coronatus and harpy eagle Harpia harpyja) whereas in Asia the only such specialist's (Philippine eagle Pithecophaga jefferyi) distribution is largely allopatric with primates. The almost universal absence of polyspecific groups in Asia (common in Africa and South America) may indicate reduced predation pressure. As such there is almost no information on predation pressures on primates in Asia by raptors. Here we report successful predation of a juvenile banded langur Presbytis femoralis (~2 kg) by a changeable hawk-eagle Spizaetus cirrhatus. The troop that was attacked displayed no signs of being alarmed, and no calls were made before the event. We argue that in insular Southeast Asia, especially, large Spizaetus hawk-eagles (~2 kg) are significant predators of arboreal colobines. Using data on the relative size of sympatric Spizaetus hawk-eagles and colobines we make predictions on where geographically we can expect the highest predation pressure (Thai-Malay Peninsula) and which colobines are least (Nasalis larvatus, Trachypithecus auratus, P. thomasi) and most (P. femoralis, T. cristatus) affected.

  20. Cooperation under Predation Risk: Experiments on Costs and Benefits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milinski, Manfred; Luthi, Jean H.; Eggler, Rolf; Parker, Geoffrey A.

    1997-06-01

    Two fish that cooperatively inspect a predator may have negotiated the share of the risk that each takes. A test of both the costs of predator inspection dependent on the distance from which the predator is approached and the potential benefits of cooperation was carried out strictly experimentally. We made either singletons or pairs of dead sticklebacks, Gasterosteus aculeatus, approach hungry pike, Esox lucius, by remote control according to an algorithm that mimicked natural inspection. The predation risk of both single inspectors and parallel inspecting pairs increased with closer inspection distances. A member of an inspecting pair had only about half the risk of that of a single inspector. In pairs, a companion diluted the lead fish's risk of being caught, depending on its distance behind the leader. The absolute risk difference between leader and follower was greatest for close inspection distances and decreased further away from the predator. The leader's relative risk increased with its distance ahead of the laggard. However, for a given distance between leader and laggard, the relative risks to the two fish remained similar with distance from the predator. The cost side of the inequalities that define a 'Prisoner's Dilemma' has thus been measured for this system. In a second experiment the 'attack deterrence hypothesis' of predator inspection (i.e. inspection decreases attack probability) was tested. The pike was offered a choice between two sticklebacks, one of which had carried out a predator inspection visit. There was no indication of attack deterrence through predator inspection.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Apfelbach, Raimund; Parsons, Michael H; Soini, Helena A; Novotny, Milos V

    2015-01-01

    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 toward 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 understand all the

  2. 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.

  3. Turbidity interferes with foraging success of visual but not chemosensory predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lunt, Jessica; Smee, Delbert L

    2015-01-01

    Predation can significantly affect prey populations and communities, but predator effects can be attenuated when abiotic conditions interfere with foraging activities. In estuarine communities, turbidity can affect species richness and abundance and is changing in many areas because of coastal development. Many fish species are less efficient foragers in turbid waters, and previous research revealed that in elevated turbidity, fish are less abundant whereas crabs and shrimp are more abundant. We hypothesized that turbidity altered predatory interactions in estuaries by interfering with visually-foraging predators and prey but not with organisms relying on chemoreception. We measured the effects of turbidity on the predation rates of two model predators: a visual predator (pinfish, Lagodon rhomboides) and a chemosensory predator (blue crabs, Callinectes sapidus) in clear and turbid water (0 and ∼100 nephelometric turbidity units). Feeding assays were conducted with two prey items, mud crabs (Panopeus spp.) that rely heavily on chemoreception to detect predators, and brown shrimp (Farfantepenaus aztecus) that use both chemical and visual cues for predator detection. Because turbidity reduced pinfish foraging on both mud crabs and shrimp, the changes in predation rates are likely driven by turbidity attenuating fish foraging ability and not by affecting prey vulnerability to fish consumers. Blue crab foraging was unaffected by turbidity, and blue crabs were able to successfully consume nearly all mud crab and shrimp prey. Turbidity can influence predator-prey interactions by reducing the feeding efficiency of visual predators, providing a competitive advantage to chemosensory predators, and altering top-down control in food webs.

  4. Assessment of predation risk through referential communication in incubating birds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Toshitaka N.

    2015-05-01

    Parents of many bird species produce alarm calls when they approach and deter a nest predator in order to defend their offspring. Alarm calls have been shown to warn nestlings about predatory threats, but parents also face a similar risk of predation when incubating eggs in their nests. Here, I show that incubating female Japanese great tits, Parus minor, assess predation risk by conspecific alarm calls given outside the nest cavity. Tits produce acoustically discrete alarm calls for different nest predators: “jar” calls for snakes and “chicka” calls for other predators such as crows and martens. Playback experiments revealed that incubating females responded to “jar” calls by leaving their nest, whereas they responded to “chicka” calls by looking out of the nest entrance. Since snakes invade the nest cavity, escaping from the nest helps females avoid snake predation. In contrast, “chicka” calls are used for a variety of predator types, and therefore, looking out of the nest entrance helps females gather information about the type and location of approaching predators. These results show that incubating females derive information about predator type from different types of alarm calls, providing a novel example of functionally referential communication.

  5. Predation risk shapes social networks in fission-fusion populations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer L Kelley

    Full Text Available Predation risk is often associated with group formation in prey, but recent advances in methods for analysing the social structure of animal societies make it possible to quantify the effects of risk on the complex dynamics of spatial and temporal organisation. In this paper we use social network analysis to investigate the impact of variation in predation risk on the social structure of guppy shoals and the frequency and duration of shoal splitting (fission and merging (fusion events. Our analyses revealed that variation in the level of predation risk was associated with divergent social dynamics, with fish in high-risk populations displaying a greater number of associations with overall greater strength and connectedness than those from low-risk sites. Temporal patterns of organisation also differed according to predation risk, with fission events more likely to occur over two short time periods (5 minutes and 20 minutes in low-predation fish and over longer time scales (>1.5 hours in high-predation fish. Our findings suggest that predation risk influences the fine-scale social structure of prey populations and that the temporal aspects of organisation play a key role in defining social systems.

  6. Reduced flocking by birds on islands with relaxed predation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beauchamp, Guy

    2004-05-22

    Adaptive hypotheses for the evolution of flocking in birds have usually focused on predation avoidance or foraging enhancement. It still remains unclear to what extent each factor has contributed to the evolution of flocking. If predation avoidance were the sole factor involved, flocking should not be prevalent when predation is relaxed. I examined flocking tendencies along with mean and maximum flock size in species living on islands where predation risk is either absent or negligible and then compared these results with matched counterparts on the mainland. The dataset consisted of 46 pairs of species from 22 different islands across the world. The tendency to flock was retained on islands in most species, but in pairs with dissimilar flocking tendencies, island species were less likely to flock. Mean and maximum flock size were smaller on islands than on the mainland. Potential confounding factors such as population density, nest predation, habitat type, food type and body mass failed to account for the results. The results suggest that predation is a significant factor in the evolution of flocking in birds. Nevertheless, predation and other factors, such as foraging enhancement, probably act together to maintain the trait in most species.

  7. Predation Risk Shapes Social Networks in Fission-Fusion Populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelley, Jennifer L.; Morrell, Lesley J.; Inskip, Chloe; Krause, Jens; Croft, Darren P.

    2011-01-01

    Predation risk is often associated with group formation in prey, but recent advances in methods for analysing the social structure of animal societies make it possible to quantify the effects of risk on the complex dynamics of spatial and temporal organisation. In this paper we use social network analysis to investigate the impact of variation in predation risk on the social structure of guppy shoals and the frequency and duration of shoal splitting (fission) and merging (fusion) events. Our analyses revealed that variation in the level of predation risk was associated with divergent social dynamics, with fish in high-risk populations displaying a greater number of associations with overall greater strength and connectedness than those from low-risk sites. Temporal patterns of organisation also differed according to predation risk, with fission events more likely to occur over two short time periods (5 minutes and 20 minutes) in low-predation fish and over longer time scales (>1.5 hours) in high-predation fish. Our findings suggest that predation risk influences the fine-scale social structure of prey populations and that the temporal aspects of organisation play a key role in defining social systems. PMID:21912627

  8. Cormorant predation on PIT-tagged lake fish

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skov, Christian; Jepsen, Niels; Baktoft, Henrik

    2014-01-01

    The present study use data from recovered PIT (Passive Integrated Transponder) tags to explore species-and size-specific annual predation rates by cormorants on three common lacustrine fishes (size range 120-367 mm) in a European lake; roach (Rutilus rutilus), common bream (Abramis brama) and perch...... (Perca fluviatilis). In addition, we quantify the level of age/size truncation that cormorant predation could introduce in a population of perch, an important fish for recreational angling as well as for trophic interactions and ecosystem function in European lakes. Based on three years of PIT tagging...... of fish in Lake Viborg and subsequent recoveries of PIT tags from nearby cormorant roosting and breeding sites, we show that cormorants are major predators of roach, bream and perch within the size groups we investigated and for all species larger individuals had higher predation rates. Perch appear...

  9. Leveling the playing field of transportation fuels: Accounting for indirect emissions of natural gas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sexton, Steven; Eyer, Jonathan

    2016-01-01

    Natural gas transportation fuels are credited in prior studies with greenhouse gas emissions savings relative to petroleum-based fuels and relative to the total emissions of biofuels. These analyses, however, overlook a source of potentially large indirect emissions from natural gas transportation fuels, namely the emissions from incremental coal-fired generation caused by price-induced substitutions away from natural-gas-fired electricity generation. Because coal-fired generation emits substantially more greenhouse gases and criteria air pollutants than natural-gas-fired generation, this indirect coal-use change effect diminishes potential emissions savings from natural gas transportation fuels. Estimates from a parameterized multi-market model suggest the indirect coal-use change effect rivals in magnitude the indirect land-use change effect of biofuels and renders natural gas fuels as carbon intensive as petroleum fuels. - Highlights: •Natural gas used in transport causes indirect emissions in the electricity sector. •These emissions result from increased coal use in electricity generation. •They rival in magnitude indirect land use change (ILUC) emissions of biofuels. •Natural gas fuels are estimated to be as carbon intensive as the petroleum fuels. •Policy ignores indirect emissions from natural gas.

  10. Landscape features influence postrelease predation on endangered black-footed ferrets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poessel, S.A.; Breck, S.W.; Biggins, D.E.; Livieri, T.M.; Crooks, K.R.; Angeloni, L.

    2011-01-01

    Predation can be a critical factor influencing recovery of endangered species. In most recovery efforts lethal and nonlethal influences of predators are not sufficiently understood to allow prediction of predation risk, despite its importance. We investigated whether landscape features could be used to model predation risk from coyotes (Canis latrans) and great horned owls (Bubo virginianus) on the endangered black-footed ferret (Mustela nigripes). We used location data of reintroduced ferrets from 3 sites in South Dakota to determine whether exposure to landscape features typically associated with predators affected survival of ferrets, and whether ferrets considered predation risk when choosing habitat near perches potentially used by owls or near linear features predicted to be used by coyotes. Exposure to areas near likely owl perches reduced ferret survival, but landscape features potentially associated with coyote movements had no appreciable effect on survival. Ferrets were located within 90 m of perches more than expected in 2 study sites that also had higher ferret mortality due to owl predation. Densities of potential coyote travel routes near ferret locations were no different than expected in all 3 sites. Repatriated ferrets might have selected resources based on factors other than predator avoidance. Considering an easily quantified landscape feature (i.e., owl perches) can enhance success of reintroduction efforts for ferrets. Nonetheless, development of predictive models of predation risk and management strategies to mitigate that risk is not necessarily straightforward for more generalist predators such as coyotes. ?? 2011 American Society of Mammalogists.

  11. Vertebrate predators have minimal cascading effects on plant production or seed predation in an intact grassland ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    John L. Maron; Dean E. Pearson

    2011-01-01

    The strength of trophic cascades in terrestrial habitats has been the subject of considerable interest and debate. We conducted an 8-year experiment to determine how exclusion of vertebrate predators, ungulates alone (to control for ungulate exclusion from predator exclusion plots) or none of these animals influenced how strongly a three-species assemblage of rodent...

  12. The risk of predation favors cooperation among breeding prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krama, Tatjana; Berzins, Arnis; Rantala, Markus J

    2010-01-01

    Empirical studies have shown that animals often focus on short-term benefits under conditions of predation risk, which reduces the likelihood that they will cooperate with others. However, some theoretical studies predict that animals in adverse conditions should not avoid cooperation with their neighbors since it may decrease individual risks and increase long-term benefits of reciprocal help. We experimentally tested these two alternatives to find out whether increased predation risk enhances or diminishes the occurrence of cooperation in mobbing, a common anti-predator behavior, among breeding pied flycatchers, Ficedula hypoleuca. Our results show that birds attended mobs initiated by their neighbors more often, approached the stuffed predator significantly more closely, and mobbed it at a higher intensity in areas where the perceived risk of predation was experimentally increased. This study demonstrates a positive impact of predation risk on cooperation in breeding songbirds, which might help to explain the emergence and evolution of cooperation. PMID:20714404

  13. Predator selection of prairie landscape features and its relation to duck nest success

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, M.L.; Clark, W.R.; Sovada, M.A.; Horn, D.J.; Koford, Rolf R.; Greenwood, R.J.

    2003-01-01

    Mammalian predation is a major cause of mortality for breeding waterfowl in the U.S. Northern Great Plains, and yet we know little about the selection of prairie habitats by predators or how this influences nest success in grassland nesting cover. We selected 2 41.4-km2 study areas in both 1996 and 1997 in North Dakota, USA, with contrasting compositions of perennial grassland. A study area contained either 15-20% perennial grassland (Low Grassland Composition [LGC]) or 45-55% perennial grassland (High Grassland Composition [HGC]). We used radiotelemetry to investigate the selection of 9 landscape cover types by red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and striped skunk (Mephitis mephitis), while simultaneously recording duck nest success within planted cover. The cover types included the edge and core areas of planted cover, wetland edges within planted cover or surrounded by cropland, pastureland, hayland, cropland, roads, and miscellaneous cover types. Striped skunks selected wetland edges surrounded by agriculture over all other cover types in LGC landscapes (P-values for all pairwise comparisons were foraging efficiency in the interior areas of planted cover and contributed to higher nest success in HGC landscapes. Our observations of predator cover-type selection not only support the restoration and management of large blocks of grassland but also indicate the influence of alternative cover types for mitigating nest predation in the Prairie Pothole Region.

  14. A potential predator-prey interaction of an American badger and an Agassiz's desert tortoise with a review of badger predation on turtles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Amanda L.; Puffer, Shellie R.; Lovich, Jeffrey E.; Tennant, Laura A.; Arundel, Terry; Vamstad, Michael S.; Brundige, Kathleen D.

    2016-01-01

    The federally threatened Agassiz’s desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) was listed under the U.S. Endangered Species Act in 1990, but thus far, recovery efforts have been unsuccessful (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service [USFWS] 2015). Predation has been identified as a contributing factor to declining G. agassizii populations range-wide (e.g., Esque et al. 2010, Lovich et al. 2014). Understanding and managing for predator-prey dynamics is thus an important part of the recovery and conservation of this threatened species (USFWS 2011). Desert tortoises have a host of predators at all stages of their life cycle. Over 20 species of birds, mammals, and reptiles have been recorded as known or suspected predators (Woodbury and Hardy 1948, Luckenbach 1982, Ernst and Lovich 2009). American badgers (Taxidea taxus, family: Mustelidae) are confirmed excavators of desert tortoise nests (Turner and Berry 1984). They are also suspected predators of adult desert tortoises, a possibility which has been presented in some studies but without empirical verification (Luckenbach 1982, Turner and Berry 1984). Active mostly at night, badgers are solitary, secretive predators (Lindzey 1978, 1982; Armitage 2004) that are extremely difficult to observe in predatory encounters. Recently, strong circumstantial evidence presented by Emblidge et al. (2015) suggests that badgers do prey on adult Agassiz’s desert tortoises based on observations of more than two dozen dead tortoises in the Western Mojave Desert of California. In this note, we present another case of potential badger predation on a large adult desert tortoise in the Sonoran Desert of California. Collectively, these recent two cases potentially indicate that badger predation may be more common and widespread than previously thought. In addition, we review the worldwide literature of badger predation on turtles in general and summarize reported badger observations in Joshua Tree National Park, where our observation occurred, over a

  15. 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.

  16. Utility loss and indirect costs after stroke in Sweden.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindgren, Peter; Glader, Eva-Lotta; Jönsson, Bengt

    2008-04-01

    Currently little data exist on the development of quality of life over time in patients suffering from stroke, in particular using instruments that can be adapted in economic studies. The purpose of the study was to assess the utility loss and indirect costs following a stroke in Sweden. A cross-sectional mail survey. In collaboration with the National Stroke registry (RIKS-STROKE), a questionnaire consisting of the EuroQol-5D and questions regarding the present working status and the status prior to the stroke was mailed to patients below 76 years of age at six participating centres. The questionnaire was mailed to 393 patients in total, divided into groups with 3, 6, 9 or 12 months having passed since the stroke. The EuroQol-5D scores were converted to utility scores using the UK social tariff. Indirect costs were valued according to the average salary+employer contributions. A total of 275 questionnaires (70%) were returned. Utility scores were similar over time: 0.65, 0.75, 0.63, and 0.67 at 3, 6, 9 and 12 months, respectively. Regression analyses revealed a tendency for lower utility scores among women, but no significant differences overall. Among patients in the working ages, a stroke caused 18.5 work weeks lost, corresponding to an indirect cost of 120,000 Swedish Kronor (SEK) (13,200euro, 95% confidence interval 82,541-160,050 SEK, 9080-17 605euro). Stroke causes a significant reduction in utility and causes high indirect costs. A substantial improvement was not noted over time, which is important to consider in economic models.

  17. Avian nestling predation by endangered Mount Graham red squirrel

    Science.gov (United States)

    Claire A. Zugmeyer; John L. Koprowski

    2007-01-01

    Studies using artificial nests or remote cameras have documented avian predation by red squirrels (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus). Although several direct observations of avian predation events are known in the northern range of the red squirrel distribution, no accounts have been reported in the southern portion. We observed predation upon a hermit thrush...

  18. Predation of Ladybird Beetles (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) by Amphibians.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sloggett, John J

    2012-07-18

    Studies of predation of ladybird beetles (Coccinellidae) have focused on a limited number of predator taxa, such as birds and ants, while other potential predators have received limited attention. I here consider amphibians as predators of ladybirds. Published amphibian gut analyses show that ladybirds are quite often eaten by frogs and toads (Anura), with recorded frequencies reaching up to 15% of dietary items. Salamanders (Caudata) eat ladybirds less frequently, probably as their habits less often bring them into contact with the beetles. Amphibians do not appear to be deleteriously affected by the potentially toxic alkaloids that ladybirds possess. Amphibians, especially frogs and toads, use primarily prey movement as a release cue to attack their food; it is thus likely that their ability to discriminate against ladybirds and other chemically defended prey is limited. Because of this poor discriminatory power, amphibians have apparently evolved non-specific resistance to prey defensive chemicals, including ladybird alkaloids. Although amphibian-related ladybird mortality is limited, in certain habitats it could outweigh mortality from more frequently studied predators, notably birds. The gut analyses from the herpetological literature used in this study, suggest that in studying predation of insects, entomologists should consider specialized literature on other animal groups.

  19. New parasitoid-predator associations: female parasitoids do not avoid competition with generalist predators when sharing invasive prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chailleux, Anaïs; Wajnberg, Eric; Zhou, Yuxiang; Amiens-Desneux, Edwige; Desneux, Nicolas

    2014-12-01

    Optimal habitat selection is essential for species survival in ecosystems, and interspecific competition is a key ecological mechanism for many observed species association patterns. Specialized animal species are commonly affected by resource and interference competition with generalist and/or omnivorous competitors, so avoidance behavior could be expected. We hypothesize that specialist species may exploit broad range cues from such potential resource competitors (i.e., cues possibly common to various generalist and/or omnivorous predators) to avoid costly competition regarding food or reproduction, even in new species associations. We tested this hypothesis by studying short-term interactions between a native larval parasitoid and a native generalist omnivorous predator recently sharing the same invasive host/prey, the leaf miner Tuta absoluta. We observed a strong negative effect of kleptoparasitism (food resource stealing) instead of classical intraguild predation on immature parasitoids. There was no evidence that parasitoid females avoided the omnivorous predator when searching for oviposition sites, although we studied both long- and short-range known detection mechanisms. Therefore, we conclude that broad range cue avoidance may not exist in our biological system, probably because it would lead to too much oviposition site avoidance which would not be an efficient and, thus, beneficial strategy. If confirmed in other parasitoids or specialist predators, our findings may have implications for population dynamics, especially in the current context of increasing invasive species and the resulting creation of many new species associations.

  20. Prey life-history and bioenergetic responses across a predation gradient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rennie, M D; Purchase, C F; Shuter, B J; Collins, N C; Abrams, P A; Morgan, G E

    2010-10-01

    To evaluate the importance of non-consumptive effects of predators on prey life histories under natural conditions, an index of predator abundance was developed for naturally occurring populations of a common prey fish, the yellow perch Perca flavescens, and compared to life-history variables and rates of prey energy acquisition and allocation as estimated from mass balance models. The predation index was positively related to maximum size and size at maturity in both male and female P. flavescens, but not with life span or reproductive investment. The predation index was positively related to size-adjusted specific growth rates and growth efficiencies but negatively related to model estimates of size-adjusted specific consumption and activity rates in both vulnerable (small) and invulnerable (large) size classes of P. flavescens. These observations suggest a trade-off between growth and activity rates, mediated by reduced activity in response to increasing predator densities. Lower growth rates and growth efficiencies in populations with fewer predators, despite increased consumption suggests either 1) a reduction in prey resources at lower predator densities or 2) an intrinsic cost of rapid prey growth that makes it unfavourable unless offset by a perceived threat of predation. This study provides evidence of trade-offs between growth and activity rates induced by predation risk in natural prey fish populations and illustrates how behavioural modification induced through predation can shape the life histories of prey fish species. © 2010 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2010 The Fisheries Society of the British Isles.

  1. Habitat selection and risk of predation: re-colonization by lynx had limited impact on habitat selection by roe deer.

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    Gustaf Samelius

    Full Text Available Risk of predation is an evolutionary force that affects behaviors of virtually all animals. In this study, we examined how habitat selection by roe deer was affected by risk of predation by Eurasian lynx - the main predator of roe deer in Scandinavia. Specifically, we compared how habitat selection by roe deer varied (1 before and after lynx re-established in the study area and (2 in relation to habitat-specific risk of predation by lynx. All analyses were conducted at the spatial and temporal scales of home ranges and seasons. We did not find any evidence that roe deer avoided habitats in which the risk of predation by lynx was greatest and information-theoretic model selection showed that re-colonization by lynx had limited impact on habitat selection by roe deer despite lynx predation causing 65% of known mortalities after lynx re-colonized the area. Instead we found that habitat selection decreased when habitat availability increased for 2 of 5 habitat types (a pattern referred to as functional response in habitat selection. Limited impact of re-colonization by lynx on habitat selection by roe deer in this study differs from elk in North America altering both daily and seasonal patterns in habitat selection at the spatial scales of habitat patches and home ranges when wolves were reintroduced to Yellowstone National Park. Our study thus provides further evidence of the complexity by which animals respond to risk of predation and suggest that it may vary between ecosystems and predator-prey constellations.

  2. Habitat selection and risk of predation: re-colonization by lynx had limited impact on habitat selection by roe deer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samelius, Gustaf; Andrén, Henrik; Kjellander, Petter; Liberg, Olof

    2013-01-01

    Risk of predation is an evolutionary force that affects behaviors of virtually all animals. In this study, we examined how habitat selection by roe deer was affected by risk of predation by Eurasian lynx - the main predator of roe deer in Scandinavia. Specifically, we compared how habitat selection by roe deer varied (1) before and after lynx re-established in the study area and (2) in relation to habitat-specific risk of predation by lynx. All analyses were conducted at the spatial and temporal scales of home ranges and seasons. We did not find any evidence that roe deer avoided habitats in which the risk of predation by lynx was greatest and information-theoretic model selection showed that re-colonization by lynx had limited impact on habitat selection by roe deer despite lynx predation causing 65% of known mortalities after lynx re-colonized the area. Instead we found that habitat selection decreased when habitat availability increased for 2 of 5 habitat types (a pattern referred to as functional response in habitat selection). Limited impact of re-colonization by lynx on habitat selection by roe deer in this study differs from elk in North America altering both daily and seasonal patterns in habitat selection at the spatial scales of habitat patches and home ranges when wolves were reintroduced to Yellowstone National Park. Our study thus provides further evidence of the complexity by which animals respond to risk of predation and suggest that it may vary between ecosystems and predator-prey constellations.

  3. Feast or flee: bioelectrical regulation of feeding and predator evasion behaviors in the planktonic alveolate Favella sp. (Spirotrichia).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Echevarria, Michael L; Wolfe, Gordon V; Taylor, Alison R

    2016-02-01

    Alveolate (ciliates and dinoflagellates) grazers are integral components of the marine food web and must therefore be able to sense a range of mechanical and chemical signals produced by prey and predators, integrating them via signal transduction mechanisms to respond with effective prey capture and predator evasion behaviors. However, the sensory biology of alveolate grazers is poorly understood. Using novel techniques that combine electrophysiological measurements and high-speed videomicroscopy, we investigated the sensory biology of Favella sp., a model alveolate grazer, in the context of its trophic ecology. Favella sp. produced frequent rhythmic depolarizations (∼500 ms long) that caused backward swimming and are responsible for endogenous swimming patterns relevant to foraging. Contact of both prey cells and non-prey polystyrene microspheres at the cilia produced immediate mechanostimulated depolarizations (∼500 ms long) that caused backward swimming, and likely underlie aggregative swimming patterns of Favella sp. in response to patches of prey. Contact of particles at the peristomal cavity that were not suitable for ingestion resulted in depolarizations after a lag of ∼600 ms, allowing time for particles to be processed before rejection. Ingestion of preferred prey particles was accompanied by transient hyperpolarizations (∼1 s) that likely regulate this step of the feeding process. Predation attempts by the copepod Acartia tonsa elicited fast (∼20 ms) animal-like action potentials accompanied by rapid contraction of the cell to avoid predation. We have shown that the sensory mechanisms of Favella sp. are finely tuned to the type, location, and intensity of stimuli from prey and predators. © 2016. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  4. The “Destabilizing” Effect of Cannibalism in a Spatially Explicit Three-Species Age Structured Predator-Prey Model

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    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.

  5. Effects of intraguild predators on nest-site selection by prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Wen-San; Pike, David A

    2012-01-01

    Nest-site selection involves tradeoffs between the risk of predation (on females and/or nests) and nest-site quality (microenvironment), and consequently suitable nesting sites are often in limited supply. Interactions with "classical" predators (e.g., those not competing for shared resources) can strongly influence nest-site selection, but whether intraguild predation also influences this behavior is unknown. We tested whether risk of predation from an intraguild predator [the diurnal scincid lizard Eutropis (Mabuya) longicaudata] influences nest-site selection by its prey (the nocturnal gecko Gekko hokouensis) on Orchid Island, Taiwan. These two species putatively compete for shared resources, including invertebrate prey and nesting microhabitat, but the larger E. longicaudata also predates G. hokouensis (but not its hard-shelled eggs). Both species nested within a concrete wall containing a series of drainage holes that have either one ("closed-in") or two openings ("open"). In allopatry, E. longicaudata preferred to nest within holes that were plugged by debris (thereby protecting eggs from water intrusion), whereas G. hokouensis selected holes that were open at both ends (facilitating escape from predators). When we experimentally excluded E. longicaudata from its preferred nesting area, G. hokouensis not only nested in higher abundances, but also modified its nest-site selection, such that communal nesting was more prevalent and both open and closed-in holes were used equally. Egg viability was unaffected by the choice of hole type, but was reduced slightly (by 7%) in the predator exclusion area (presumably due to higher local incubation temperatures). Our field experiment demonstrates that intraguild predators can directly influence the nest density of prey by altering maternal nest-site selection behavior, even when the predator and prey are active at different times of day and the eggs are not at risk of predation.

  6. Chaotic population dynamics and biology of the top-predator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rai, Vikas; Upadhyay, Ranjit Kumar

    2004-01-01

    We study how the dynamics of a food chain depends on the biology of the top-predator. We consider two model food chains with specialist and generalist top-predators. Both types of food chains display same type of chaotic behavior, short-term recurrent chaos; but the generating mechanisms are drastically different. Food chains with specialist top-predators are dictated by exogenous stochastic factors. On the contrary, the dynamics of those with the generalist top-predator is governed by deterministic changes in system parameters. The study also suggests that robust chaos would be a rarity

  7. Aquatic macroinvertebrate responses to native and non-native predators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haddaway N. R.

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Non-native species can profoundly affect native ecosystems through trophic interactions with native species. Native prey may respond differently to non-native versus native predators since they lack prior experience. Here we investigate antipredator responses of two common freshwater macroinvertebrates, Gammarus pulex and Potamopyrgus jenkinsi, to olfactory cues from three predators; sympatric native fish (Gasterosteus aculeatus, sympatric native crayfish (Austropotamobius pallipes, and novel invasive crayfish (Pacifastacus leniusculus. G. pulex responded differently to fish and crayfish; showing enhanced locomotion in response to fish, but a preference for the dark over the light in response to the crayfish. P.jenkinsi showed increased vertical migration in response to all three predator cues relative to controls. These different responses to fish and crayfish are hypothesised to reflect the predators’ differing predation types; benthic for crayfish and pelagic for fish. However, we found no difference in response to native versus invasive crayfish, indicating that prey naiveté is unlikely to drive the impacts of invasive crayfish. The Predator Recognition Continuum Hypothesis proposes that benefits of generalisable predator recognition outweigh costs when predators are diverse. Generalised responses of prey as observed here will be adaptive in the presence of an invader, and may reduce novel predators’ potential impacts.

  8. Effects of Sublethal Concentrations of Insecticides on the Functional Response of Two Mirid Generalist Predators.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Angeliki F Martinou

    Full Text Available The use of agrochemicals particularly pesticides, can hamper the effectiveness of natural enemies, causing disruption in the ecosystem service of biological control. In the current study, the effects of the insecticides thiacloprid and chlorantraniliprole on the functional response curves were assessed for two mirid predator nymphs, Macrolophus pygmaeus Rambur and Nesidiocoris tenuis Reuter. In the absence of insecticides, both predators exhibited a type II functional response when feeding on eggs of the moth Ephestia kuehniella. N. tenuis seems to be a more efficient predator than M. pygmaeus, as model estimated handling time was significantly lower for the former than for the latter. Residual exposure of M. pygmaeus to sublethal concentrations of either insecticide was associated with a change in the asymptote but not the type of the functional response curve. Thiacloprid seems to be the least compatible with M. pygmaeus, as it led to both a significant reduction of the attack rate and an increase in handling time. In contrast, chlorantraniliprole exposure significantly increased the handling time, but not the attack rate of the predator. Residual exposure of N. tenuis to sublethal concentrations of either insecticide did not have a significant effect on the type nor the parameters of the functional response model. The results show that pesticide residues that do not have lethal effects on beneficial arthropods can reduce prey consumption depending on predator species and on likely risks associated with toxicity.

  9. Effects of Sublethal Concentrations of Insecticides on the Functional Response of Two Mirid Generalist Predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinou, Angeliki F; Stavrinides, Menelaos C

    2015-01-01

    The use of agrochemicals particularly pesticides, can hamper the effectiveness of natural enemies, causing disruption in the ecosystem service of biological control. In the current study, the effects of the insecticides thiacloprid and chlorantraniliprole on the functional response curves were assessed for two mirid predator nymphs, Macrolophus pygmaeus Rambur and Nesidiocoris tenuis Reuter. In the absence of insecticides, both predators exhibited a type II functional response when feeding on eggs of the moth Ephestia kuehniella. N. tenuis seems to be a more efficient predator than M. pygmaeus, as model estimated handling time was significantly lower for the former than for the latter. Residual exposure of M. pygmaeus to sublethal concentrations of either insecticide was associated with a change in the asymptote but not the type of the functional response curve. Thiacloprid seems to be the least compatible with M. pygmaeus, as it led to both a significant reduction of the attack rate and an increase in handling time. In contrast, chlorantraniliprole exposure significantly increased the handling time, but not the attack rate of the predator. Residual exposure of N. tenuis to sublethal concentrations of either insecticide did not have a significant effect on the type nor the parameters of the functional response model. The results show that pesticide residues that do not have lethal effects on beneficial arthropods can reduce prey consumption depending on predator species and on likely risks associated with toxicity.

  10. Estimated loss of juvenile salmonids to predation by northern squawfish, walleyes, and smallmouth bass in John Day Reservoir, Columbia River

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rieman, B.E.; Beamesderfer, R.C.; Vigg, S.; Poe, T.P.

    1991-01-01

    The authors estimated the loss of juvenile salmonids Oncorhynchus spp. to predation by northern squawfish Ptychocheilus oregonensis, walleyes Stizostedion vitreum, and smallmouth bass Micropterus dolomieu in John Day Reservoir during 1983-1986. Their estimates were based on measures of daily prey consumption, predator numbers, and numbers of juvenile salmonids entering the reservoir during the April-August period of migration. They estimated the mean annual loss was 2.7 million juvenile salmonids. Northern squawfish were responsible for 78% of the total loss; walleyes accounted for 13% and smallmouth bass for 9%. Twenty-one percent of the loss occurred in a small area immediately below McNary Dam at the head of John Day Reservoir. The authors estimated that the three predator species consumed 14% of all juvenile salmonids that entered the reservoir. Mortality changed by month and increased late in the migration season. Monthly mortality estimates ranged from 7% in June and 61% in August. Mortality from predation was highest for chinook salmon O. tshawytscha, which migrated in July and August. Despite uncertainties in the estimates, it is clear that predation by resident fish predators can easily account for previously explained mortality of out-migrating juvenile salmonids. Alteration of the Columbia River by dams and a decline in the number of salmonids could have increased the fraction of mortality caused by predation over what is was in the past

  11. Study on screening of anti-predator rhizosphere bacterium against Caenorhabditis elegans and its anti predation mechanism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    HE Qingling

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Althoughmicrobial fertilizer is multi-effect,environmental friendly and long-term efficient,its practical application effect is but decreased for being prey by the other creators living in soil frequently.Many bacterium have developed their mechanisms that expel or kill worms to defend themselves from predators.Screening of anti-predator rhizosphere bacterium helps us to find out competitive plant growth promoting rhizobacteria(PGPR.Using Caenorhabditis elegans as sample,this study roughly observed two strains of biocontrol:Pseudomonas aurantiaca JD37 and Pseudomonas fluorescens P13.Using Escherichia coli OP50 as control group,we find the preference order of worms,from highest to lowest,is P13,OP50 and JD37.In slow killing assay,the death rate of worms for JD37 and P13 are 26.12% and 18.66% respectively.The activity and reproduction rate of C.elegans decrease when it is fed on JD37.The results of chemical and micro-biological study show that JD37 cannot produce any currently studied second metabolites which kill worms,while P13 can produce Hydrogen cyanide (HCN.All these results show that JD37 has the ability of anti-predator,and is more competitive under predation pressure,which suggests its broad application prospect as microbial fertilizer.

  12. Lévy Walks Suboptimal under Predation Risk.

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    Masato S Abe

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available A key challenge in movement ecology is to understand how animals move in nature. Previous studies have predicted that animals should perform a special class of random walks, called Lévy walk, to obtain more targets. However, some empirical studies did not support this hypothesis, and the relationship between search strategy and ecological factors is still unclear. We focused on ecological factors, such as predation risk, and analyzed whether Lévy walk may not be favored. It was remarkable that the ecological factors often altered an optimal search strategy from Lévy walk to Brownian walk, depending on the speed of the predator's movement, density of predators, etc. This occurred because higher target encounter rates simultaneously led searchers to higher predation risks. Our findings indicate that animals may not perform Lévy walks often, and we suggest that it is crucial to consider the ecological context for evaluating the search strategy performed by animals in the field.

  13. Dynamics of a Stochastic Intraguild Predation Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zejing Xing

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Intraguild predation (IGP is a widespread ecological phenomenon which occurs when one predator species attacks another predator species with which it competes for a shared prey species. The objective of this paper is to study the dynamical properties of a stochastic intraguild predation model. We analyze stochastic persistence and extinction of the stochastic IGP model containing five cases and establish the sufficient criteria for global asymptotic stability of the positive solutions. This study shows that it is possible for the coexistence of three species under the influence of environmental noise, and that the noise may have a positive effect for IGP species. A stationary distribution of the stochastic IGP model is established and it has the ergodic property, suggesting that the time average of population size with the development of time is equal to the stationary distribution in space. Finally, we show that our results may be extended to two well-known biological systems: food chains and exploitative competition.

  14. Recovery of a top predator mediates negative eutrophic effects on seagrass

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Brent B.; Eby, Ron; Van Dyke, Eric; Tinker, M. Tim; Marks, Corina I.; Johnson, Kenneth S.; Wasson, Kerstin

    2013-01-01

    A fundamental goal of the study of ecology is to determine the drivers of habitat-forming vegetation, with much emphasis given to the relative importance to vegetation of “bottom-up” forces such as the role of nutrients and “top-down” forces such as the influence of herbivores and their predators. For coastal vegetation (e.g., kelp, seagrass, marsh, and mangroves) it has been well demonstrated that alterations to bottom-up forcing can cause major disturbances leading to loss of dominant vegetation. One such process is anthropogenic nutrient loading, which can lead to major changes in the abundance and species composition of primary producers, ultimately affecting important ecosystem services. In contrast, much less is known about the relative importance of apex predators on coastal vegetated ecosystems because most top predator populations have been depleted or lost completely. Here we provide evidence that an unusual four-level trophic cascade applies in one such system, whereby a top predator mitigates the bottom-up influences of nutrient loading. In a study of seagrass beds in an estuarine ecosystem exposed to extreme nutrient loading, we use a combination of a 50-y time series analysis, spatial comparisons, and mesocosm and field experiments to demonstrate that sea otters (Enhydra lutris) promote the growth and expansion of eelgrass (Zostera marina) through a trophic cascade, counteracting the negative effects of agriculturally induced nutrient loading. Our results add to a small but growing body of literature illustrating that significant interactions between bottom-up and top-down forces occur, in this case with consequences for the conservation of valued ecosystem services provided by seagrass.

  15. Direct and Indirect Effects of Climate Change on Amphibian Populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephanie S. Gervasi

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available As part of an overall decline in biodiversity, populations of many organisms are declining and species are being lost at unprecedented rates around the world. This includes many populations and species of amphibians. Although numerous factors are affecting amphibian populations, we show potential direct and indirect effects of climate change on amphibians at the individual, population and community level. Shifts in amphibian ranges are predicted. Changes in climate may affect survival, growth, reproduction and dispersal capabilities. Moreover, climate change can alter amphibian habitats including vegetation, soil, and hydrology. Climate change can influence food availability, predator-prey relationships and competitive interactions which can alter community structure. Climate change can also alter pathogen-host dynamics and greatly influence how diseases are manifested. Changes in climate can interact with other stressors such as UV-B radiation and contaminants. The interactions among all these factors are complex and are probably driving some amphibian population declines and extinctions.

  16. Direct and indirect effects of a new disease of alcyonacean soft corals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slattery, M.; Renegar, D. A.; Gochfeld, D. J.

    2013-09-01

    Alcyonacean soft corals form major components of the biomass and biodiversity on many shallow Indo-Pacific reefs. In spite of the observed increase in marine diseases worldwide, disease has rarely been reported from this taxonomic group. Here, we describe a chronic tissue loss disease affecting soft corals of the genus Sinularia on reefs in Guam. The disease presents as a diffuse wrinkling of the otherwise smooth fingers, followed by tissue sloughing, necrosis, and disintegration. Until a cause has been confirmed, we propose the name Sinularia Tissue Loss Disease. This disease was first observed at low prevalence (Disease prevalence is now significantly greater in the hybrid (11-12 %) than in either parent species (2-3 %). Histological examination of healthy and affected tissues of hybrid soft corals demonstrates a loss of structural integrity, increased densities of amoebocytes and inclusion of unidentified foreign eukaryotic cells that resemble oocysts, in the diseased tissues. The presence of disease is associated with reduced concentrations of cellular protein levels, although lipids and carbohydrates were unaffected. Results from a common garden transplant experiment indicate that disease also has an indirect effect on hybrid soft corals by increasing rates of butterflyfish predation over the levels found on healthy hybrids or on healthy and diseased parent species. Our results indicate that interactions between the parent and hybrid soft coral populations are more dynamic than previously reported. Loss of hybrid soft corals on already degraded back-reefs of Guam could have significant repercussions for these reef communities.

  17. Cumulative human impacts on marine predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maxwell, Sara M; Hazen, Elliott L; Bograd, Steven J; Halpern, Benjamin S; Breed, Greg A; Nickel, Barry; Teutschel, Nicole M; Crowder, Larry B; Benson, Scott; Dutton, Peter H; Bailey, Helen; Kappes, Michelle A; Kuhn, Carey E; Weise, Michael J; Mate, Bruce; Shaffer, Scott A; Hassrick, Jason L; Henry, Robert W; Irvine, Ladd; McDonald, Birgitte I; Robinson, Patrick W; Block, Barbara A; Costa, Daniel P

    2013-01-01

    Stressors associated with human activities interact in complex ways to affect marine ecosystems, yet we lack spatially explicit assessments of cumulative impacts on ecologically and economically key components such as marine predators. Here we develop a metric of cumulative utilization and impact (CUI) on marine predators by combining electronic tracking data of eight protected predator species (n=685 individuals) in the California Current Ecosystem with data on 24 anthropogenic stressors. We show significant variation in CUI with some of the highest impacts within US National Marine Sanctuaries. High variation in underlying species and cumulative impact distributions means that neither alone is sufficient for effective spatial management. Instead, comprehensive management approaches accounting for both cumulative human impacts and trade-offs among multiple stressors must be applied in planning the use of marine resources.

  18. Nest predators of open and cavity nesting birds in oak woodlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kathryn L. Purcell; Jared Verner

    1999-01-01

    Camera setups revealed at least three species of rodents and seven species of birds as potential predators at artificial open nests. Surprisingly, among avian predators identified at open nests, one third were Bullock's Orioles (Icterus bullockii). Two rodent species and three bird species were potential predators at artificial cavity nests. This high predator...

  19. Development of a systemwide predator control program: Stepwise implementation of a predator index, predator control fisheries, and evaluation plan in the Columbia River basin (Northern Squawfish Management Program). Section 1: Implementation; Annual report 1995

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Young, F.R.

    1997-04-01

    The authors report their results from the fifth year of a basinwide program to harvest northern squawfish (Ptychocheilus oregonensis) in an effort to reduce mortality due to northern squawfish predation on juvenile salmonids during their emigration from natal streams to the ocean. Earlier work in the Columbia River Basin suggested predation by northern squawfish on juvenile salmonids may account for most of the 10--20% mortality juvenile salmonids experience in each of eight Columbia and Snake River reservoirs. Modeling simulations based on work in John Day Reservoir from 1982 through 1988 indicated that if predator-sized northern squawfish were exploited at a 10--20% rate, the resulting restructuring of their population could reduce their predation on juvenile salmonids by 50%

  20. Habitat selection responses of parents to offspring predation risk: An experimental test

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fontaine, J.J.; Martin, T.E.

    2006-01-01

    The ability of nest predation to influence habitat settlement decisions in birds is widely debated, despite its importance in limiting fitness. Here, we experimentally manipulated nest predation risk across a landscape and asked the question, do migratory birds assess and respond to variation in nest predation risk when choosing breeding habitats? We examined habitat preference by quantifying the density and settlement date of eight species of migratory passerines breeding in areas with and without intact nest predator communities. We found consistently more individuals nesting in areas with reduced nest predation than in areas with intact predator assemblages, although predation risk had no influence on settlement or breeding phenology. Additionally, those individuals occupying safer nesting habitats exhibited increased singing activity. These findings support a causal relationship between habitat choice and nest predation risk and suggest the importance of nest predation risk in shaping avian community structure and breeding activity. ?? 2006 by The University of Chicago. All rights reserved.

  1. Does predation control adult sex ratios and longevities in marine pelagic copepods?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hirst, A.G.; Bonnet, D.; Conway, D.V.P.

    2010-01-01

    We assess the causes of adult sex ratio skew in marine pelagic copepods by examining changes in these ratios between the juveniles and adults, sexual differences in juvenile stage durations, and mortality rates of adults in the field and laboratory (when free from predators). In the field, late...... copepodite stages (CIV and CV) commonly have sex ratios that are either not significantly different from equity (1 : 1), or slightly male biased. By contrast, in adults, these ratios are commonly significantly biased toward female dominance. Sex ratio skews are therefore primarily attributable to processes...... in adults. Members of the non-Diaptomoidea have especially skewed adult ratios; in the members Oithonidae and Clausocalanidae this is not generated from differences between male and female adult physiological longevity (i.e., laboratory longevity when free of predators). In the genera Acartia, Oithona...

  2. Integrating Remote Sensing and Citizen Science to Study the Environmental Context and Ecological Consequences of Returning Avian Predators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zuckerberg, B.; McCabe, J.; Yin, H.; Pidgeon, A. M.; Bonter, D. N.; Radeloff, V.

    2017-12-01

    Urbanization causes the simplification of animal communities dominated by exotic and invasive species with few top predators. In recent years, however, many animal predators (e.g., coyotes, cougars, and hawks) have become increasingly common in urban environments. As predator recovery is central to the mission of conservation biology, this colonization of urban environments represents a unique experiment in predator colonization and its associated ecological consequences. One such predator that is recovering from decades of widespread population declines are accipiter hawks. These woodland hawks are widely distributed throughout North America and are increasingly common in urban and suburban landscapes. Using data from Project FeederWatch, a national citizen science program, we quantified 25 years (1990-2015) of changes in the spatiotemporal dynamics of accipiter hawks in Washington D.C. and Chicago. We estimated change in hawk occupancy over time and identified the environmental characteristics associated with occupancy for two accipiter hawk species, Cooper's Hawk (Accipiter cooperii) and Sharp-shinned Hawk (Accipiter striatus), using Bayesian hierarchical models and remotely-sensed temperature (MODIS) and land cover data (NLCD). We found the proportion of sites recording the presence of accipiter hawks increased from 10% in the early 1990's to over 80% in 2015. This increase in occupancy followed a discrete pattern of establishment, growth, and saturation. Colonizing hawks were more strongly associated with remnant forest patches in urban environments. Over time, we found hawks became more tolerant of urban landscapes with higher amounts of impervious surface, suggesting that these predators became adapted to urbanization. The implications of returning predators and altered ecological dynamics in urban environments is of critical importance to conservation biology, and integrating remote sensing observations and citizen science allowed for an unprecedented

  3. Intraguild predation and cannibalism among larvae of detritivorous caddisflies in subalpine wetlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wissinger, S.A.; Sparks, G.B.; Rouse, G.L.; Brown, W.S.; Steltzer, Heidi

    1996-01-01

    Comparative data from subalpine wetlands in Colorado indicate that larvae of the limnephilid caddisflies, Asynarchus nigriculus and Limnephilus externus, are reciprocally abundant among habitats - Limnephilus larvae dominate in permanent waters, whereas Asynarchus larvae dominate in temporary basins. The purpose of this paper is to report on field and laboratory experiments that link this pattern of abundance to biotic interactions among larvae. In the first field experiment, growth and survival were compared in single and mixed species treatments in littoral enclosures. Larvae, which eat mainly vascular plant detritus, grew at similar rates among treatments in both temporary and permanent habitats suggesting that exploitative competition is not important under natural food levels and caddisfly densities. However, the survival of Limnephilus larvae was reduced in the presence of Asynarchus larvae. Subsequent behavioral studies in laboratory arenas revealed that Asynarchus larvae are extremely aggressive predators on Limnephilus larvae. In a second field experiment we manipulated the relative sizes of larvae and found that Limnephilus larvae were preyed on only when Asynarchus larvae had the same size advantage observed in natural populations. Our data suggest that the dominance of Asynarchus larvae in temporary habitats is due to asymmetric intraguild predation (IGP) facilitated by a phenological head start in development. These data do not explain the dominance of Limnephilus larvae in permanent basins, which we show elsewhere to be an indirect effect of salamander predation. Behavioral observations also revealed that Asynarchus larvae are cannibalistic. In contrast to the IGP on Limnephilus larvae, Asynarchus cannibalism occurs among same-sized larvae and often involves the mobbing of one victim by several conspecifics. In a third field experiment, we found that Asynarchus cannibalism was not density-dependent and occurred even at low larval densities. We

  4. Direct and Indirect Effects of Pesticides on the Insidious Flower Bug (Hemiptera: Anthocoridae) Under Laboratory Conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herrick, Nathan J; Cloyd, Raymond A

    2017-06-01

    Greenhouse producers are interested in integrating natural enemies along with pesticides to suppress western flower thrips, Frankliniella occidentalis (Pergande), populations. The insidious flower bug, Orius insidiosus (Say), is a commercially available natural enemy of western flower thrips. We conducted a series of laboratory experiments to determine the direct and indirect effects of 28 pesticides (insecticides, miticides, and fungicides), 4 pesticide mixtures, and 4 surfactants (36 total treatments plus a water control) on the adult O. insidiosus survival and predation on western flower thrips adults under laboratory conditions. The number of live and dead O. insidiosus adults was recorded after 24, 48, 72, and 96 h. The results of the study indicate that the fungicides (aluminum tris, azoxystrobin, fenhexamid, and kresoxim-methyl), insect growth regulators (azadirachtin, buprofezin, kinoprene, and pyriproxyfen), botanicals (Capsicum oleoresin extract, garlic oil, soybean oil; and rosemary, rosemary oil, peppermint oil, and cottonseed oil), and entomopathogenic fungi (Beauveria bassiana and Metarhizium anisopliae) were minimally directly harmful to adult O. insidiosus, with 80% to 100% adult survival. However, abamectin, spinosad, pyridalyl, chlorfenapyr, tau-fluvalinate, imidacloprid, dinotefuran, acetamiprid, and thiamethoxam directly affected O. insidiosus survival after 96 h (0-60% adult survival). The pesticide mixtures of abamectin + spinosad and chlorfenapyr + dinotefuran reduced adult survival (20% and 0%, respectively, after 48 h). Furthermore, the surfactants were not directly harmful to O. insidiosus adults. All western flower thrips adults were killed by the surviving adult O. insidiosus after 48 h, indicating no indirect effects of the pesticides on predation. © The Authors 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  5. 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

  6. Can cat predation help competitors coexist in seabird communities?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pontier, Dominique; Fouchet, David; Bried, Joël

    2010-01-07

    On oceanic islands, nest site availability can be an important factor regulating seabird population dynamics. The potential for birds to secure a nest to reproduce can be an important component of their life histories. The dates at which different seabird species arrive at colonies to breed will have important consequences for their relative chances of success. Early arrival on the island allows birds to obtain nests more easily and have higher reproductive success. However, the presence of an introduced predator may reverse this situation. For instance, in the sub-Antarctic Kerguelen archipelago, early arriving birds suffer heavy predation from introduced cats. Cats progressively switch from seabirds to rabbits, since the local rabbit population starts to peak after early arriving seabird species have already returned to the colony. When late-arriving birds arrive, cat predation pressure on seabirds is thus weaker. In this paper, we investigate the assumption that the advantage of early nest mnopolization conferred to early arriving birds may be counterbalanced by the cost resulting from predation. We develop a mathematical model representing a simplified situation in which two insular seabird species differ only in their arrival date at the colony site and compete for nesting sites. We conclude that predation may ensure the coexistence of the two bird species or favor the late-arriving species, but only when seasonal variations in predation pressure are large. Interestingly, we conclude that arriving early is only favorable until a given level where high reproductive success no longer compensates for the long exposure to strong predation pressure. Our work suggests that predation can help to maintain the balance between species of different phenologies.

  7. 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.

  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. Joint evolution of predator body size and prey-size preference.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Troost, T.A.; Kooi, B.W.; Dieckmann, U.

    2007-01-01

    We studied the joint evolution of predator body size and prey-size preference based on dynamic energy budget theory. The predators' demography and their functional response are based on general eco-physiological principles involving the size of both predator and prey. While our model can account for

  10. Experimental evidence for innate predator recognition in the Seychelles warbler

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Veen, Thor; Richardson, David S.; Blaakmeer, Karen; Komdeur, Jan

    2000-01-01

    Nest predation is a major determinant of fitness in birds and costly nest defence behaviours have evolved in order to reduce nest predation. Some avian studies have suggested that predator recognition is innate whereas others hate stressed the importance: of learning. However, none of these studies

  11. Loss of live coral compromises predator-avoidance behaviour in coral reef damselfish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boström-Einarsson, Lisa; Bonin, Mary C; Munday, Philip L; Jones, Geoffrey P

    2018-05-17

    Tropical reefs have experienced an unprecedented loss of live coral in the past few decades and the biodiversity of coral-dependent species is under threat. Many reef fish species decline in abundance as coral cover is lost, yet the mechanisms responsible for these losses are largely unknown. A commonly hypothesised cause of fish decline is the loss of shelter space between branches as dead corals become overgrown by algae. Here we tested this hypothesis by quantifying changes in predator-avoidance behaviour of a common damselfish, Pomacentrus moluccensis, before and after the death of their coral colony. Groups of P. moluccensis were placed on either healthy or degraded coral colonies, startled using a visual stimulus and their sheltering responses compared over a 7-week period. P. moluccensis stopped sheltering amongst the coral branches immediately following the death of the coral, despite the presence of ample shelter space. Instead, most individuals swam away from the dead coral, potentially increasing their exposure to predators. It appears that the presence of live coral rather than shelter per se is the necessary cue that elicits the appropriate behavioural response to potential predators. The disruption of this link poses an immediate threat to coral-associated fishes on degrading reefs.

  12. Direct and Indirect Effects of PM on the Cardiovascular System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelin, Timothy D.; Joseph, Allan M.; Gorr, Matthew W.; Wold, Loren E.

    2011-01-01

    Human exposure to particulate matter (PM) elicits a variety of responses on the cardiovascular system through both direct and indirect pathways. Indirect effects of PM on the cardiovascular system are mediated through the autonomic nervous system, which controls heart rate variability, and inflammatory responses, which augment acute cardiovascular events and atherosclerosis. Recent research demonstrates that PM also affects the cardiovascular system directly by entry into the systemic circulation. This process causes myocardial dysfunction through mechanisms of reactive oxygen species production, calcium ion interference, and vascular dysfunction. In this review, we will present key evidence in both the direct and indirect pathways, suggest clinical applications of the current literature, and recommend directions for future research. PMID:22119171

  13. School is out on noisy reefs: the effect of boat noise on predator learning and survival of juvenile coral reef fishes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrari, Maud C O; McCormick, Mark I; Meekan, Mark G; Simpson, Stephen D; Nedelec, Sophie L; Chivers, Douglas P

    2018-01-31

    Noise produced by anthropogenic activities is increasing in many marine ecosystems. We investigated the effect of playback of boat noise on fish cognition. We focused on noise from small motorboats, since its occurrence can dominate soundscapes in coastal communities, the number of noise-producing vessels is increasing rapidly and their proximity to marine life has the potential to cause deleterious effects. Cognition-or the ability of individuals to learn and remember information-is crucial, given that most species rely on learning to achieve fitness-promoting tasks, such as finding food, choosing mates and recognizing predators. The caveat with cognition is its latent effect: the individual that fails to learn an important piece of information will live normally until the moment where it needs the information to make a fitness-related decision. Such latent effects can easily be overlooked by traditional risk assessment methods. Here, we conducted three experiments to assess the effect of boat noise playbacks on the ability of fish to learn to recognize predation threats, using a common, conserved learning paradigm. We found that fish that were trained to recognize a novel predator while being exposed to 'reef + boat noise' playbacks failed to subsequently respond to the predator, while their 'reef noise' counterparts responded appropriately. We repeated the training, giving the fish three opportunities to learn three common reef predators, and released the fish in the wild. Those trained in the presence of 'reef + boat noise' playbacks survived 40% less than the 'reef noise' controls over our 72 h monitoring period, a performance equal to that of predator-naive fish. Our last experiment indicated that these results were likely due to failed learning, as opposed to stress effects from the sound exposure. Neither playbacks nor real boat noise affected survival in the absence of predator training. Our results indicate that boat noise has the potential to cause

  14. Variation in predator foraging behavior changes predator-prey spatio-temporal dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    1. Foraging underlies the ability of all animals to acquire essential resources and, thus, provides a critical link to understanding population dynamics. A key issue is how variation in foraging behavior affects foraging efficiency and predator-prey interactions in spatially-heterogeneous environmen...

  15. Informed renesting decisions: the effect of nest predation risk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pakanen, Veli-Matti; Rönkä, Nelli; Thomson, Robert L; Koivula, Kari

    2014-04-01

    Animals should cue on information that predicts reproductive success. After failure of an initial reproductive attempt, decisions on whether or not to initiate a second reproductive attempt may be affected by individual experience and social information. If the prospects of breeding success are poor, long-lived animals in particular should not invest in current reproductive success (CRS) in case it generates costs to future reproductive success (FRS). In birds, predation risk experienced during breeding may provide a cue for renesting success. Species having a high FRS potential should be flexible and take predation risk into account in their renesting decisions. We tested this prediction using breeding data of a long-lived wader, the southern dunlin Calidris alpina schinzii. As predicted, dunlin cued on predation risk information acquired from direct experience of nest failure due to predation and ambient nest predation risk. While the overall renesting rate was low (34.5%), the early season renesting rate was high but declined with season, indicating probable temporal changes in the costs and benefits of renesting. We develop a conceptual cost-benefit model to describe the effects of the phase and the length of breeding season on predation risk responses in renesting. We suggest that species investing in FRS should not continue breeding in short breeding seasons in response to predation risk but without time constraints, their response should be similar to species investing in CRS, e.g. within-season dispersal and increased nest concealment.

  16. Bagworm bags as portable armour against invertebrate predators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shinji Sugiura

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Some animals have evolved the use of environmental materials as “portable armour” against natural enemies. Portable bags that bagworm larvae (Lepidoptera: Psychidae construct using their own silk and plant parts are generally believed to play an important role as a physical barrier against natural enemies. However, no experimental studies have tested the importance of bags as portable armour against predators. To clarify the defensive function, I studied the bagworm Eumeta minuscula and a potential predator Calosoma maximoviczi (Coleoptera: Carabidae. Under laboratory conditions, all bagworm larvae were attacked by carabid adults, but successfully defended themselves against the predators’ mandibles using their own bags. The portable bags, which are composed mainly of host plant twigs, may function as a physical barrier against predator mandibles. To test this hypothesis, I removed the twig bags and replaced some with herb leaf bags; all bag-removed larvae were easily caught and predated by carabids, while all bag-replaced larvae could successfully defend themselves against carabid attacks. Therefore, various types of portable bags can protect bagworm larvae from carabid attacks. This is the first study to test the defensive function of bagworm portable bags against invertebrate predators.

  17. Strike fast, strike hard: the red-throated caracara exploits absconding behavior of social wasps during nest predation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCann, Sean; Moeri, Onour; Jones, Tanya; Scott, Catherine; Khaskin, Grigori; Gries, Regine; O'Donnell, Sean; Gries, Gerhard

    2013-01-01

    Red-throated Caracaras Ibycter americanus (Falconidae) are specialist predators of social wasps in the Neotropics. It had been proposed that these caracaras possess chemical repellents that allow them to take the brood of wasp nests without being attacked by worker wasps. To determine how caracaras exploit nests of social wasps and whether chemical repellents facilitate predation, we: (1) video recorded the birds attacking wasp nests; (2) analyzed surface extracts of the birds' faces, feet, and feathers for potential chemical repellents; and (3) inflicted mechanical damage on wasp nests to determine the defensive behavior of wasps in response to varying levels of disturbance. During caracara predation events, two species of large-bodied wasps mounted stinging attacks on caracaras, whereas three smaller-bodied wasp species did not. The "hit-and-run" predation tactic of caracaras when they attacked nests of large and aggressive wasps reduced the risk of getting stung. Our data reveal that the predation strategy of caracaras is based on mechanical disturbance of, and damage to, target wasp nests. Caracara attacks and severe experimental disturbance of nests invariably caused wasps to abscond (abandon their nests). Two compounds in caracara foot extracts [sulcatone and iridodial] elicited electrophysiological responses from wasp antennae, and were also present in defensive secretions of sympatric arboreal-nesting Azteca ants. These compounds appear not to be wasp repellents but to be acquired coincidentally by caracaras when they perch on trees inhabited with Azteca ants. We conclude that caracara predation success does not depend on wasp repellents but relies on the absconding response that is typical of swarm-founding polistine wasps. Our study highlights the potential importance of vertebrate predators in the ecology and evolution of social wasps.

  18. Fear of predation drives stable and differentiated social relationships in guppies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heathcote, Robert J P; Darden, Safi K; Franks, Daniel W; Ramnarine, Indar W; Croft, Darren P

    2017-02-02

    Social relationships can have important consequences for fitness in animals. Whilst numerous studies have shown that individuals often join larger groups in response to perceived predation risk (i.e. fear of predation), the importance of predation risk in driving the formation and stability of social relationships within groups has been relatively ignored. We experimentally tested how predation threat influenced fine-scale social network structure using Trinidadian guppies (Poecilia reticulata). When perceived predation risk was high, individuals developed stable and more differentiated social ties compared to when perceived risk was low. Intriguingly, social differentiation coincided with shoals being somewhat smaller under high-perceived risk, suggesting a possible conflict between forming stable social relationships and larger social groups. Individuals most at risk of predation (large and bold individuals) showed the most exaggerated responses in several social measures. Taken together, we provide the first experimental evidence that proximate risk of predation can increase the intensity of social relationships and fine-scale social structure in animal populations.

  19. Behavior is a major determinant of predation risk in zooplankton

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Almeda, Rodrigo; van Someren Gréve, Hans; Kiørboe, Thomas

    2017-01-01

    as prey for different predatory copepods. Copepods with “active” feeding behaviors (feeding-current and cruising feeders) showed significantly higher mortality from predation (~2–8 times) than similarly sized copepods with low motility feeding behavior (ambush feeders). Copepod males, which have a more...... active motile behavior than females (mate-seeking behavior), suffered a higher predation mortality than females in most of the experiments. However, the predation risk for mate-searching behavior in copepods varied depending on feeding behavior with ambush feeders consistently having the greatest......Zooplankton exhibit different small-scale motile behaviors related to feeding and mating activities. These different motile behaviors may result in different levels of predation risk, which may partially determine the structure of planktonic communities. Here, we experimentally determined predation...

  20. Direct and indirect effects of climate change on a prairie plant community.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter B Adler

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Climate change directly affects species by altering their physical environment and indirectly affects species by altering interspecific interactions such as predation and competition. Recent studies have shown that the indirect effects of climate change may amplify or counteract the direct effects. However, little is known about the the relative strength of direct and indirect effects or their potential to impact population persistence.We studied the effects of altered precipitation and interspecific interactions on the low-density tiller growth rates and biomass production of three perennial grass species in a Kansas, USA mixed prairie. We transplanted plugs of each species into local neighborhoods of heterospecific competitors and then exposed the plugs to a factorial manipulation of growing season precipitation and neighbor removal. Precipitation treatments had significant direct effects on two of the three species. Interspecific competition also had strong effects, reducing low-density tiller growth rates and aboveground biomass production for all three species. In fact, in the presence of competitors, (log tiller growth rates were close to or below zero for all three species. However, we found no convincing evidence that per capita competitive effects changed with precipitation, as shown by a lack of significant precipitation x competition interactions.We found little evidence that altered precipitation will influence per capita competitive effects. However, based on species' very low growth rates in the presence of competitors in some precipitation treatments, interspecific interactions appear strong enough to affect the balance between population persistence and local extinction. Therefore, ecological forecasting models should include the effect of interspecific interactions on population growth, even if such interaction coefficients are treated as constants.

  1. Predator-induced physiological responses in tadpoles challenged with herbicide pollution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pablo BURRACO, Lidia Jiménez DUARTE, Ivan GOMEZ-MESTRE

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Predators induce plastic responses in multiple prey taxa, ranging from morphological to behavioral or physiological changes. In amphibians, tadpoles activate plastic responses to reduce predation risk by reducing their activity rate and altering their morphology, specifically tail depth and pigmentation. Furthermore, there is now evidence that tadpoles’ defenses are modified when predators combine with other stressful factors such as pollutants or competitors, but our knowledge on the physiological responses underlying these responses is still scarce. Here we study physiological responses in Pelobates cultripes tadpoles exposed to a natural predator (larvae of the aquatic beetle Dytiscus circumflexus, non-lethal concentrations of herbicide (glyphosate, 0.5 mg/L and 1.0 mg/L or both factors combined. We measured corticosterone levels, standard metabolic rate, oxidative damage (TBARS and activity of antioxidant enzymes, and immune response (via leukocyte count. Tadpoles reduced their corticosterone concentration by ca. 24% in the presence of predator cues, whereas corticosterone did not change in the presence of glyphosate. Two enzymes involved in antioxidant response also decreased in the presence of predators (14.7% and 13.2% respectively but not to glyphosate. Herbicide, however, increased the number of neutrophils and reduced that of lymphocytes, and had an interaction effect with predator presence. Standard metabolic rate did not vary across treatments in our experiment. Thus we show a marked physiological response to the presence of predators but little evidence for interaction between predators and low levels of herbicide. Multiple assessment of the physiological state of animals is important to understand the basis and consequences of phenotypic plasticity [Current Zoology 59 (4: 475–484, 2013].

  2. Temporal variation in black-caiman-nest predation in varzea of central Brazilian amazonia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torralvo, Kelly; Botero-Arias, Robinson; Magnusson, William E

    2017-01-01

    On the Amazon floodplain, the main predators of black caiman (Melanosuchus niger) eggs are jaguars (Panthera onca), tegu lizards (Tupinambis teguixim), capuchin monkeys (Sapajus macrocephalus) and humans (Homo sapiens). In this study, we investigated the relationship between predator attacks on nests and incubation period, and evaluated the influence of initial predation on subsequent predation in the Mamirauá Sustainable Development Reserve. We also evaluated the influence of presence of females near the nests and manipulation of nests on the occurrence of attacks. We compared results from data obtained with camera traps and vestiges left by predators on estimates of rates of predation by different predators. Egg predation was recorded in 32% of the 658 black caiman nests monitored during two years. Our results suggest that the probability of predation on black caiman eggs is relatively constant throughout the incubation period and that predation on eggs was lower when adults, presumably females, were present. Careful opening of nests and handling of eggs did not increase the number of attacks on black caiman nests. Nest opening by a predator appeared to increase the chances of a subsequent attack because most of the attacks on nests occurred soon after a predator first opened the nest. However, attacks by another species of predator do not appear to be necessary to initiate attacks by any other species of predator. Results based on camera traps and vestiges differed, but use of vestiges was adequate for identifying the principal predators on eggs in black caiman nests and, in many circumstances, the vestiges may be better for estimating predation by humans. In this study, opening nests and handling eggs did not increase the number of attacks on black caiman nests.

  3. Temporal variation in black-caiman-nest predation in varzea of central Brazilian amazonia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kelly Torralvo

    Full Text Available On the Amazon floodplain, the main predators of black caiman (Melanosuchus niger eggs are jaguars (Panthera onca, tegu lizards (Tupinambis teguixim, capuchin monkeys (Sapajus macrocephalus and humans (Homo sapiens. In this study, we investigated the relationship between predator attacks on nests and incubation period, and evaluated the influence of initial predation on subsequent predation in the Mamirauá Sustainable Development Reserve. We also evaluated the influence of presence of females near the nests and manipulation of nests on the occurrence of attacks. We compared results from data obtained with camera traps and vestiges left by predators on estimates of rates of predation by different predators. Egg predation was recorded in 32% of the 658 black caiman nests monitored during two years. Our results suggest that the probability of predation on black caiman eggs is relatively constant throughout the incubation period and that predation on eggs was lower when adults, presumably females, were present. Careful opening of nests and handling of eggs did not increase the number of attacks on black caiman nests. Nest opening by a predator appeared to increase the chances of a subsequent attack because most of the attacks on nests occurred soon after a predator first opened the nest. However, attacks by another species of predator do not appear to be necessary to initiate attacks by any other species of predator. Results based on camera traps and vestiges differed, but use of vestiges was adequate for identifying the principal predators on eggs in black caiman nests and, in many circumstances, the vestiges may be better for estimating predation by humans. In this study, opening nests and handling eggs did not increase the number of attacks on black caiman nests.

  4. Chemosensory Perception of Predators by Larval Amphibians Depends on Water Quality.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rachael R Troyer

    Full Text Available The acquisition of sensory information by animals is central to species interactions. In aquatic environments, most taxa use chemical cues to assess predation risk and other key ecological factors. A number of laboratory studies suggest that anthropogenic pollutants can disrupt chemoreception, even when at low, non-toxic concentrations, but there are few tests of whether real-world variation in water quality affects chemoreception. Here we investigate whether chemosensory perception of predators by the gray treefrog, Hyla versicolor, depends on water quality. We evaluated the anti-predator response of anuran tadpoles housed in water collected from three sites that represent strong contrasts in the concentration and types of dissolved solids: de-chlorinated tap water, water from an impaired stream, and treated wastewater effluent. Behavioral assays were conducted in laboratory aquaria. Chemical cues associated with predation were generated by feeding tadpoles to dragonfly predators held in containers, and then transferring aliquots of water from dragonfly containers to experimental aquaria. Tadpoles housed in tap water responded to predator cues with an activity reduction of 49%. Tadpoles housed in stream water and wastewater effluent responded to predator cues by reducing activity by 29% and 24% respectively. The results of factorial ANOVA support the hypothesis that the response to predator cues depended on water type. These results show that alteration of the chemical environment can mediate chemical perception of predators in aquatic ecosystems. Because most aquatic species rely on chemoreception to gather information on the location of food and predators, any impairment of sensory perception likely has important ecological consequences.

  5. 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.

  6. Predator response to releases of American shad larvae in the Susquehanna River basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, James H.; Ringler, N.H.

    1998-01-01

    Predation on American shad (Alosa sapidissima) larvae within the first two hours of release was examined from 1989 to 1992 on 31 occasions at stocking sites in the Susquehanna River basin. Twenty-two fish species consumed shad larvae; the dominant predators were spotfin shiner (Cyprinella spiloptera), mimic shiner (Notropis volucellus) and juvenile smallmouth bass (Micropterus dolomieu). The number of shad larvae found in predator stomachs ranged from 0 to 900. Mortality of shad larvae at the stocking site was usually less than 2%. The greatest mortality (9.6%) occurred at the highest stocking level (1.5 million larvae). Highly variable predation rates and release levels of shad insufficient to achieve predator satiation hindered the ability to determine a specific type of functional response of predators. Predator numbers increased with stocking density, indicating short-term aggregation at the release site. Because of practical problems associated with releasing the large numbers of larvae that would be required to satiate predators, routine stocking at these levels is probably unreasonable. Releases of 400,000 to 700,000 larvae may reduce predation by offsetting depensatory mechanisms that operate on small releases and the effects of increased predation due to predator aggregation on large releases. Night stocking may reduce predation on larval shad at the release site.

  7. Adaptive Advantage of Myrmecochory in the Ant-Dispersed Herb Lamium amplexicaule (Lamiaceae: Predation Avoidance through the Deterrence of Post-Dispersal Seed Predators.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Koki Tanaka

    Full Text Available Seed dispersal by ants (myrmecochory is found worldwide, but the benefits that plants obtain from this mutualism remain uncertain. In the present study, we conducted laboratory experiments to demonstrate seed predator avoidance as a benefit of myrmecochory using the annual ant-dispersed herb Lamium amplexicaule, the disperser ant Tetramorium tsushimae, and the seed predatory burrower bug Adomerus rotundus. We compared the predation intensity of Lamium amplexicaule seeds by Adomerus rotundus under the presence or absence of Tetramorium tsushimae. Both the number of seeds sucked by Adomerus rotundus adults and the feeding duration of sucked seeds by nymphs were significantly reduced in the presence of ants. This effect was most likely due to the behavioral alteration of Adomerus rotundus in response to the ant presence, because ants seldom predated Adomerus rotundus during the experiment. Our results demonstrated that the presence of ants decreases post-dispersal seed predation, even when the ants do not bury the seeds. The present study thus suggests that the non-consumptive effects of ants on seed predators benefit myrmecochorous plants.

  8. Optimal diving under the risk of predation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heithaus, Michael R; Frid, Alejandro

    2003-07-07

    Many air-breathing aquatic foragers may be killed by aerial or subsurface predators while recovering oxygen at the surface; yet the influence of predation risk on time allocation during dive cycles is little known in spite of numerous studies on optimal diving. We modeled diving behavior under the risk of predation at the surface. The relationship between time spent at the surface and the risk of death is predicted to influence the optimal surface interval, regardless of whether foragers accumulate energy at a constant rate while at the food patch, deplete food resources over the course of the dive, or must search for food during the dive. When instantaneous predation risk during a single surface interval decreases with time spent at the surface, a diver should increase its surface interval relative to that which maximizes energy intake, thereby increasing dive durations and reducing the number of surfacings per foraging bout. When instantaneous risk over a single surface interval does not change or increases with increasing time at the surface, divers should decrease their surface interval (and consequently their dive duration) relative to that which maximizes energy intake resulting in more dives per foraging bout. The fitness consequences of selecting a suboptimal surface interval vary with the risk function and the way divers harvest energy when at depth. Finally, predation risk during surface intervals should have important consequences for habitat selection and other aspects of the behavioral ecology of air-breathing aquatic organisms.

  9. 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

  10. Deep-ocean predation by a high Arctic cetacean

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Laidre, K.L.; Heide-Jørgensen, M.P.; Jørgensen, Ole A

    2004-01-01

    were correlated with predicted whale predation levels based on diving behavior. The difference in Greenland halibut biomass between an area with high predation and a comparable area without whales, approximately 19000 tonnes, corresponded well with the predicted biomass removed by the narwhal sub...

  11. Ocean acidification and responses to predators: can sensory redundancy reduce the apparent impacts of elevated CO2 on fish?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lönnstedt, Oona M; Munday, Philip L; McCormick, Mark I; Ferrari, Maud C O; Chivers, Douglas P

    2013-09-01

    Carbon dioxide (CO2) levels in the atmosphere and surface ocean are rising at an unprecedented rate due to sustained and accelerating anthropogenic CO2 emissions. Previous studies have documented that exposure to elevated CO2 causes impaired antipredator behavior by coral reef fish in response to chemical cues associated with predation. However, whether ocean acidification will impair visual recognition of common predators is currently unknown. This study examined whether sensory compensation in the presence of multiple sensory cues could reduce the impacts of ocean acidification on antipredator responses. When exposed to seawater enriched with levels of CO2 predicted for the end of this century (880 μatm CO2), prey fish completely lost their response to conspecific alarm cues. While the visual response to a predator was also affected by high CO2, it was not entirely lost. Fish exposed to elevated CO2, spent less time in shelter than current-day controls and did not exhibit antipredator signaling behavior (bobbing) when multiple predator cues were present. They did, however, reduce feeding rate and activity levels to the same level as controls. The results suggest that the response of fish to visual cues may partially compensate for the lack of response to chemical cues. Fish subjected to elevated CO2 levels, and exposed to chemical and visual predation cues simultaneously, responded with the same intensity as controls exposed to visual cues alone. However, these responses were still less than control fish simultaneously exposed to chemical and visual predation cues. Consequently, visual cues improve antipredator behavior of CO2 exposed fish, but do not fully compensate for the loss of response to chemical cues. The reduced ability to correctly respond to a predator will have ramifications for survival in encounters with predators in the field, which could have repercussions for population replenishment in acidified oceans.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  13. Competition, predation and species responses to environmental change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jiang, Lin; Kulczychi, A. [Rutgers Univ., Cook College, Dept. of Ecology, Evolution and Natural Resources, New Brunswick, NJ (United States)

    2004-08-01

    Despite much effort over the past decade on the ecological consequences of global warming, ecologists still have little understanding of the importance of interspecific interactions in species responses to environmental change. Models predict that predation should mitigate species responses to environmental change, and that interspecific competition should aggravate species responses to environmental change. To test this prediction, we studied how predation and competition affected the responses of two ciliates, Colpidiumstriatum and Parameciumtetraurelia, to temperature change in laboratory microcosms. We found that neither predation nor competition altered the responses of Colpidiumstratum to temperature change, and that competition but not predation altered the responses of Paramecium tetraurelia to temperature change. Asymmetric interactions and temperature-dependent interactions may have contributed to the disparity between model predictions and experimental results. Our results suggest that models ignoring inherent complexities in ecological communities may be inadequate in forecasting species responses to environmental change. (au)

  14. Energy storage and fecundity explain deviations from ecological stoichiometry predictions under global warming and size-selective predation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Chao; Jansen, Mieke; De Meester, Luc; Stoks, Robby

    2016-11-01

    stoichiometry, largely by changing levels of energy storage molecules. Our results highlight that two widespread patterns, the trade-off between rapid development and energy storage and the increased investment in reproduction under size-selective predation, cause predictable deviations from current ecological stoichiometry theory. © 2016 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2016 British Ecological Society.

  15. Mass enhances speed but diminishes turn capacity in terrestrial pursuit predators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Rory P; Griffiths, Iwan W; Mills, Michael GL; Carbone, Chris; Wilson, John W; Scantlebury, David M

    2015-01-01

    The dynamics of predator-prey pursuit appears complex, making the development of a framework explaining predator and prey strategies problematic. We develop a model for terrestrial, cursorial predators to examine how animal mass modulates predator and prey trajectories and affects best strategies for both parties. We incorporated the maximum speed-mass relationship with an explanation of why larger animals should have greater turn radii; the forces needed to turn scale linearly with mass whereas the maximum forces an animal can exert scale to a 2/3 power law. This clarifies why in a meta-analysis, we found a preponderance of predator/prey mass ratios that minimized the turn radii of predators compared to their prey. It also explained why acceleration data from wild cheetahs pursuing different prey showed different cornering behaviour with prey type. The outcome of predator prey pursuits thus depends critically on mass effects and the ability of animals to time turns precisely. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.06487.001 PMID:26252515

  16. Indirection and computer security.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Berg, Michael J.

    2011-09-01

    The discipline of computer science is built on indirection. David Wheeler famously said, 'All problems in computer science can be solved by another layer of indirection. But that usually will create another problem'. We propose that every computer security vulnerability is yet another problem created by the indirections in system designs and that focusing on the indirections involved is a better way to design, evaluate, and compare security solutions. We are not proposing that indirection be avoided when solving problems, but that understanding the relationships between indirections and vulnerabilities is key to securing computer systems. Using this perspective, we analyze common vulnerabilities that plague our computer systems, consider the effectiveness of currently available security solutions, and propose several new security solutions.

  17. Sleeping birds do not respond to predator odour

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Amo, L.; Caro, S.P.; Visser, M.E.

    2011-01-01

    Background: During sleep animals are relatively unresponsive and unaware of their environment, and therefore, more exposed to predation risk than alert and awake animals. This vulnerability might influence when, where and how animals sleep depending on the risk of predation perceived before going to

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  19. Vibrio cholerae as a predator: lessons from evolutionary principles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefan ePukatzki

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Diarrheal diseases are the second-most common cause of death among children under the age of five worldwide. Cholera alone, caused by the marine bacterium Vibrio cholerae, is responsible for several million cases and over 120,000 deaths annually. When contaminated water is ingested, V. cholerae passes through the gastric acid barrier, penetrates the mucin layer of the small intestine, and adheres to the underlying epithelial lining. V. cholerae multiplies rapidly, secretes cholera toxin, and exits the human host in vast numbers during diarrheal purges. How V. cholerae rapidly reaches such high numbers during each purge is not clearly understood. We propose that V. cholerae employs its bactericidal type VI secretion system to engage in intraspecies and intraguild predation for nutrient acquisition to support rapid growth and multiplication.

  20. Does a Simple Cope's Rule Mechanism Overlook Predators?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Penteriani, V.; Kenward, R.

    2007-01-01

    The Copes rule predicts a tendency for species to evolve towards an increase in size. Recently, it has been suggested that such a tendency is due to the fact that large body sizes provide a general increase in individual fitness. Here we highlight evidence that predator species do not always fit the large-size = high-fitness mechanism for Copes rule. Given the specific requirements of predators and the complexity of prey-predator relationships, any analysis that does not take into account all animal groups may overlook a significant portion of evolutive trends. Generalisations may not be possible regardless of taxa.

  1. Coexistence with predators (Coexistencia con depredadores)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bill MacDonald; Mac Donaldson; Caren Cowan

    2006-01-01

    We have asked Caren to join us, too, so we get at least three perspectives, because I don’t think there is one particular philosophy with predators that anybody can say works in every case. If you were to ask me what my predator program is, I would say I don’t really have one. That wasn’t always the case. When I was young, I took great delight in sitting for hours with...

  2. [Estimation on the indirect economic burden of disease-related premature deaths in China, 2012].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Juan; Feng, Luzhao; Zheng, Yaming; Yu, Hongjie

    2014-11-01

    To estimate the indirect economic burden of disease-related premature deaths in China, 2012. Both human capital approach and friction cost methods were used to compute the indirect economic burden of premature deaths from the following sources: mortality from the national disease surveillance system in 2012, average annual income per capita from the China Statistic Yearbook in 2012, population size from the 2010 China census, and life expectancy in China from the World Health Organization life table. Data from the Human Capital Approach Estimates showed that the indirect economic burden of premature deaths in China was 425.1 billion in 2012, accounting for 8‰ of the GDP. The indirect economic burden of chronic non-communicable diseases associated premature deaths was accounted for the highest proportion(67.1%, 295.4 billion), followed by those of injuries related premature deaths (25.6% , 108.9 billion), infectious diseases, maternal and infants diseases, and malnutrition related deaths (6.4% , 26.9 billion). The top five premature deaths that cause the indirect economic burden were malignancy, cardiovascular diseases, unintentional injuries, intentional injuries, and diseases of the respiratory system. The indirect economic burden of premature deaths mainly occurred in the population of 20-59 year-olds. Under the Friction Cost method, the estimates appeared to be 0.11%-3.49% of the total human capital approach estimates. Premature death caused heavy indirect economic burden in China. Chronic non-communicable diseases and injuries seemed to incur the major disease burden. The indirect economic burden of premature deaths mainly occurred in the working age group.

  3. Predation on hatchery-reared lobsters released in the wild

    OpenAIRE

    van der Meeren, Gro

    2000-01-01

    Predation on hatchery-reared lobsters (Homarus gammarus) in the wild was studied in order to identify predators in southwestern Norway on rocky and sandy substrates in winter and summer. Lobsters of 12–15 mm carapace length were tagged with magnetic microtags. About 51 000 juvenile lobsters were released on 10 occasions at three locations. Predator samplings were by trammel nets, eel traps, and videorecordings during the 24 h immediately following the releases. In summer, loss to ...

  4. Predation rate by wolves on the Porcupine caribou herd

    OpenAIRE

    Hayes, Robert D.; Russell, Donald E.

    2000-01-01

    Large migratory catibou {Rangifer tarandus) herds in the Arctic tend to be cyclic, and population trends are mainly driven by changes in forage or weather events, not by predation. We estimated daily kill rate by wolves on adult caribou in winter, then constructed a time and space dependent model to estimate annual wolf (Canis lupus) predation rate (P annual) on adult Porcupine caribou. Our model adjusts predation seasonally depending on caribou distribution: Pannual = SIGMAdaily* W *Ap(2)*Dp...

  5. The nest predator assemblage for songbirds in Mono Lake basin riparian habitats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quresh S. Latif; Sacha K. Heath; Grant Ballard

    2012-01-01

    Because nest predation strongly limits avian fitness, ornithologists identify nest predators to inform ecological research and conservation. During 2002–2008, we used both video-monitoring of natural nests and direct observations of predation to identify nest predators of open-cup nesting riparian songbirds along tributaries of Mono Lake, California. Video cameras at...

  6. Bald eagle predation on common loon egg

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeStefano, Stephen; McCarthy, Kyle P.; Laskowski, Tom

    2010-01-01

    The Common Loon (Gavia immer) must defend against many potential egg predators during incubation, including corvids, Herring Gulls (Larus argentatus), raccoons (Procyon lotor), striped skunk (Mephitis mephitis), fisher (Martes pennanti), and mink (Neovison vison) (McIntyre 1988, Evers 2004, McCann et al. 2005). Bald Eagles (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) have been documented as predators of both adult Common Loons and their chicks (Vliestra and Paruk 1997, Paruk et al. 1999, Erlandson et al. 2007, Piper et al. 2008). In Wisconsin, where nesting Bald Eagles are abundant (>1200 nesting pairs, >1 young/pair/year), field biologists observed four instances of eagle predation of eggs in loon nests during the period 2002–2004 (M. Meyer pers. comm.). In addition, four cases of eagle predation of incubating adult loons were inferred from evidence found at the loon nest (dozens of plucked adult loon feathers, no carcass remains) and/or loon leg, neck, and skull bones beneath two active eagle nests, including leg bones containing the bands of the nearby (nest surveillance video camera on Lake Umbagog, a large lake (32 km2) at Umbagog National Wildlife Refuge (UNWR) in Maine.

  7. What regulates crab predation on mangrove propagules?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Nedervelde, Fleur; Cannicci, Stefano; Koedam, Nico; Bosire, Jared; Dahdouh-Guebas, Farid

    2015-02-01

    Crabs play a major role in some ecosystems. To increase our knowledge about the factors that influence crab predation on propagules in mangrove forests, we performed experiments in Gazi Bay, Kenya in July 2009. We tested whether: (1) crab density influences propagule predation rate; (2) crab size influences food competition and predation rate; (3) crabs depredate at different rates according to propagule and canopy cover species; (4) vegetation density is correlated with crab density; (5) food preferences of herbivorous crabs are determined by size, shape and nutritional value. We found that (1) propagule predation rate was positively correlated to crab density. (2) Crab competitive abilities were unrelated to their size. (3) Avicennia marina propagules were consumed more quickly than Ceriops tagal except under C. tagal canopies. (4) Crab density was negatively correlated with the density of A. marina trees and pneumatophores. (5) Crabs prefer small items with a lower C:N ratio. Vegetation density influences crab density, and crab density affects propagule availability and hence vegetation recruitment rate. Consequently, the mutual relationships between vegetation and crab populations could be important for forest restoration success and management.

  8. Skate Bathyraja spp. egg predation in the eastern Bering Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoff, G R

    2009-01-01

    Predation on skate eggs by snails was examined for three skate species at seven nursery sites in three regions (north, middle and south) of the eastern Bering Sea. Mean predation levels were 6.46% for the Alaska skate Bathyraja parmifera, 2.65% for the Aleutian skate Bathyraja aleutica and 22.25% for the Bering skate Bathyraja interrupta. Predation levels were significantly higher at the middle and north sites than the south sites for all species combined. Predation levels decreased with increasing egg-case densities at all nursery sites, and the highest predation levels occurred where egg-case densities were very low. Predated egg-case density increased with increasing snail densities across all nursery sites examined. The Oregon triton Fusitriton oregonensis was the most abundant snail species at all nursery sites and displayed ability to drill holes in the egg case of B. parmifera. Holes left by predatory snails in egg cases of B. parmifera were significantly larger, and of different shape at the middle site compared to the south site. Holes in B. parmifera were also significantly larger than those in egg cases of B. interrupta across all sites examined. Egg cases of B. aleutica possess surface spines that cover the egg case and may inhibit predation by snails at a greater rate than that of the B. parmifera and B. interrupta, which have a smoother egg-case surface.

  9. Indirect land-use changes can overcome carbon savings from biofuels in Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lapola, David M.; Schaldach, Ruediger; Alcamo, Joseph; Bondeau, Alberte; Koch, Jennifer; Koelking, Christina; Priess, Joerg A.

    2010-01-01

    The planned expansion of biofuel plantations in Brazil could potentially cause both direct and indirect land-use changes (e.g., biofuel plantations replace rangelands, which replace forests). In this study, we use a spatially explicit model to project land-use changes caused by that expansion in 2020, assuming that ethanol (biodiesel) production increases by 35 (4) x 109 liter in the 2003-2020 period. Our simulations show that direct land-use changes will have a small impact on carbon emissions because most biofuel plantations would replace rangeland areas. However, indirect land-use changes, especially those pushing the rangeland frontier into the Amazonian forests, could offset the carbon savings from biofuels. Sugarcane ethanol and soybean biodiesel each contribute to nearly half of the projected indirect deforestation of 121,970 km2 by 2020, creating a carbon debt that would take about 250 years to be repaid using these biofuels instead of fossil fuels. We also tested different crops that could serve as feedstock to fulfill Brazil’s biodiesel demand and found that oil palm would cause the least land-use changes and associated carbon debt. The modeled livestock density increases by 0.09 head per hectare. But a higher increase of 0.13 head per hectare in the average livestock density throughout the country could avoid the indirect land-use changes caused by biofuels (even with soybean as the biodiesel feedstock), while still fulfilling all food and bioenergy demands. We suggest that a closer collaboration or strengthened institutional link between the biofuel and cattle-ranching sectors in the coming years is crucial for effective carbon savings from biofuels in Brazil. PMID:20142492

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  11. Does predation risk affect mating behavior? An experimental test in dumpling squid (Euprymna tasmanica.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda M Franklin

    Full Text Available One of the most important trade-offs for many animals is that between survival and reproduction. This is particularly apparent when mating increases the risk of predation, either by increasing conspicuousness, reducing mobility or inhibiting an individual's ability to detect predators. Individuals may mitigate the risk of predation by altering their reproductive behavior (e.g. increasing anti-predator responses to reduce conspicuousness. The degree to which individuals modulate their reproductive behavior in relation to predation risk is difficult to predict because both the optimal investment in current and future reproduction (due to life-history strategies and level of predation risk may differ between the sexes and among species. Here, we investigate the effect of increased predation risk on the reproductive behavior of dumpling squid (Euprymna tasmanica.Females, but not males, showed a substantial increase in the number of inks (an anti-predator behavior before mating commenced in the presence of a predator (sand flathead Platycephalus bassensis. However, predation risk did not affect copulation duration, the likelihood of mating, female anti-predator behavior during or after mating or male anti-predator behavior at any time.Inking is a common anti-predator defense in cephalopods, thought to act like a smokescreen, decoy or distraction. Female dumpling squid are probably using this form of defense in response to the increase in predation risk prior to mating. Conversely, males were undeterred by the increase in predation risk. A lack of change in these variables may occur if the benefit of completing mating outweighs the risk of predation. Prioritizing current reproduction, even under predation risk, can occur when the chance of future reproduction is low, there is substantial energetic investment into mating, or the potential fitness payoffs of mating are high.

  12. Coping with shifting nest predation refuges by European reed Warblers Acrocephalus scirpaceus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucyna Halupka

    Full Text Available Predation, the most important source of nest mortality in altricial birds, has been a subject of numerous studies during past decades. However, the temporal dynamics between changing predation pressures and parental responses remain poorly understood. We analysed characteristics of 524 nests of European reed warblers monitored during six consecutive breeding seasons in the same area, and found some support for the shifting nest predation refuge hypothesis. Nest site characteristics were correlated with nest fate, but a nest with the same nest-site attributes could be relatively safe in one season and vulnerable to predation in another. Thus nest predation refuges were ephemeral and there was no between-season consistency in nest predation patterns. Reed warblers that lost their first nests in a given season did not disperse farther for the subsequent reproductive attempt, compared to successful individuals, but they introduced more changes to their second nest sites. In subsequent nests, predation risk remained constant for birds that changed nest-site characteristics, but increased for those that did not. At the between-season temporal scale, individual birds did not perform better with age in terms of reducing nest predation risk. We conclude that the experience acquired in previous years may not be useful, given that nest predation refuges are not stable.

  13. Mobbing calls signal predator category in a kin group-living bird species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griesser, Michael

    2009-01-01

    Many prey species gather together to approach and harass their predators despite the associated risks. While mobbing, prey usually utter calls and previous experiments have demonstrated that mobbing calls can convey information about risk to conspecifics. However, the risk posed by predators also differs between predator categories. The ability to communicate predator category would be adaptive because it would allow other mobbers to adjust their risk taking. I tested this idea in Siberian jays Perisoreus infaustus, a group-living bird species, by exposing jay groups to mounts of three hawk and three owl species of varying risks. Groups immediately approached to mob the mount and uttered up to 14 different call types. Jays gave more calls when mobbing a more dangerous predator and when in the presence of kin. Five call types were predator-category-specific and jays uttered two hawk-specific and three owl-specific call types. Thus, this is one of the first studies to demonstrate that mobbing calls can simultaneously encode information about both predator category and the risk posed by a predator. Since antipredator calls of Siberian jays are known to specifically aim at reducing the risk to relatives, kin-based sociality could be an important factor in facilitating the evolution of predator-category-specific mobbing calls. PMID:19474047

  14. Mobbing calls signal predator category in a kin group-living bird species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griesser, Michael

    2009-08-22

    Many prey species gather together to approach and harass their predators despite the associated risks. While mobbing, prey usually utter calls and previous experiments have demonstrated that mobbing calls can convey information about risk to conspecifics. However, the risk posed by predators also differs between predator categories. The ability to communicate predator category would be adaptive because it would allow other mobbers to adjust their risk taking. I tested this idea in Siberian jays Perisoreus infaustus, a group-living bird species, by exposing jay groups to mounts of three hawk and three owl species of varying risks. Groups immediately approached to mob the mount and uttered up to 14 different call types. Jays gave more calls when mobbing a more dangerous predator and when in the presence of kin. Five call types were predator-category-specific and jays uttered two hawk-specific and three owl-specific call types. Thus, this is one of the first studies to demonstrate that mobbing calls can simultaneously encode information about both predator category and the risk posed by a predator. Since antipredator calls of Siberian jays are known to specifically aim at reducing the risk to relatives, kin-based sociality could be an important factor in facilitating the evolution of predator-category-specific mobbing calls.

  15. A tropical horde of counterfeit predator eyes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janzen, Daniel H; Hallwachs, Winnie; Burns, John M

    2010-06-29

    We propose that the many different, but essentially similar, eye-like and face-like color patterns displayed by hundreds of species of tropical caterpillars and pupae-26 examples of which are displayed here from the dry, cloud, and rain forests of Area de Conservacion Guanacaste (ACG) in northwestern Costa Rica-constitute a huge and pervasive mimicry complex that is evolutionarily generated and sustained by the survival behavior of a large and multispecific array of potential predators: the insect-eating birds. We propose that these predators are variously and innately programmed to flee when abruptly confronted, at close range, with what appears to be an eye of one of their predators. Such a mimetic complex differs from various classical Batesian and Müllerian mimicry complexes of adult butterflies in that (i) the predators sustain it for the most part by innate traits rather than by avoidance behavior learned through disagreeable experiences, (ii) the more or less harmless, sessile, and largely edible mimics vastly outnumber the models, and (iii) there is no particular selection for the eye-like color pattern to closely mimic the eye or face of any particular predator of the insect-eating birds or that of any other member of this mimicry complex. Indeed, selection may not favor exact resemblance among these mimics at all. Such convergence through selection could create a superabundance of one particular false eyespot or face pattern, thereby increasing the likelihood of a bird species or guild learning to associate that pattern with harmless prey.

  16. Diversity in thermal affinity among key piscivores buffers impacts of ocean warming on predator-prey interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Selden, Rebecca L; Batt, Ryan D; Saba, Vincent S; Pinsky, Malin L

    2018-01-01

    Asymmetries in responses to climate change have the potential to alter important predator-prey interactions, in part by altering the location and size of spatial refugia for prey. We evaluated the effect of ocean warming on interactions between four important piscivores and four of their prey in the U.S. Northeast Shelf by examining species overlap under historical conditions (1968-2014) and with a doubling in CO 2 . Because both predator and prey shift their distributions in response to changing ocean conditions, the net impact of warming or cooling on predator-prey interactions was not determined a priori from the range extent of either predator or prey alone. For Atlantic cod, an historically dominant piscivore in the region, we found that both historical and future warming led to a decline in the proportion of prey species' range it occupied and caused a potential reduction in its ability to exert top-down control on these prey. In contrast, the potential for overlap of spiny dogfish with prey species was enhanced by warming, expanding their importance as predators in this system. In sum, the decline in the ecological role for cod that began with overfishing in this ecosystem will likely be exacerbated by warming, but this loss may be counteracted by the rise in dominance of other piscivores with contrasting thermal preferences. Functional diversity in thermal affinity within the piscivore guild may therefore buffer against the impact of warming on marine ecosystems, suggesting a novel mechanism by which diversity confers resilience. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  17. Spatial heterogeneity in post-dispersal predation on Prunus and Uvularia seeds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webb, Sara L; Willson, Mary F

    1985-08-01

    We investigated effects of seed density, distance from parent, and habitat (woods, open field) on post-dispersal predation risk (chiefly by rodents) for seeds of Prunus virginiana (Rosaceae). Additional study of the habitat effect (woods, open field, treefall gap) was made with seeds of Prunus avium (Rosaceae) and Uvularia grandiflora (Liliaceae). Density of Prunus seeds (range 2-40 seeds/group) did not affect predation risk for individual seeds. Distance from parent plants did influence predation risk, which was greatest directly beneath parents. This distance effect primarily comprised a sharp drop in risk within 2 m of parents, a distance too small to generate a "spacing rule" for conspecifics.We found that habitat strongly influenced predation intensity. Rates of removal of Prunus seeds were higher in woods than in open fields, except when overall predation intensity was very low and no pattern could be discerned. Prunus seed removal rates were higher in closed woods than in treefall gaps. Consequently, a Prunus seed will more likely escape predation if dispersed to an open site. In contrast, Uvularia seed removal rates were higher in open fields than in woods but did not differ between closed woods and tree-fall gaps.Predation intensity was spatially patchy between and within experimental arrays, but was consistent over time at some specific points in space, possibly reflecting home ranges of seed predators.

  18. Interactions between a Top Order Predator and Exotic Mesopredators in the Australian Rangelands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katherine E. Moseby

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available An increase in mesopredators caused by the removal of top-order predators can have significant implications for threatened wildlife. Recent evidence suggests that Australia’s top-order predator, the dingo, may suppress the introduced cat and red fox. We tested this relationship by reintroducing 7 foxes and 6 feral cats into a 37 km2 fenced paddock in arid South Australia inhabited by a male and female dingo. GPS datalogger collars recorded locations of all experimental animals every 2 hours. Interactions between species, mortality rates, and postmortems were used to determine the mechanisms of any suppression. Dingoes killed all 7 foxes within 17 days of their introduction and no pre-death interactions were recorded. All 6 feral cats died between 20 and 103 days after release and dingoes were implicated in the deaths of at least 3 cats. Dingoes typically stayed with fox and cat carcasses for several hours after death and/or returned several times in ensuing days. There was no evidence of intraguild predation, interference competition was the dominant mechanism of suppression. Our results support anecdotal evidence that dingoes may suppress exotic mesopredators, particularly foxes. We outline further research required to determine if this suppression translates into a net benefit for threatened prey species.

  19. 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...

  20. Using consumption rate to assess potential predators for biological control of white perch

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gosch N.J.C.

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Control of undesirable fishes is important in aquatic systems, and using predation as a tool for biological control is an attractive option to fishery biologists. However, determining the appropriate predators for biological control is critical for success. The objective of this study was to evaluate the utility of consumption rate as an index to determine the most effective predators for biological control of an invasive fish. Consumption rate values were calculated for nine potential predators that prey on white perch Morone americana in Branched Oak and Pawnee reservoirs, Nebraska. The consumption rate index provided a unique and insightful means of determining the potential effectiveness of each predator species in controlling white perch. Cumulative frequency distributions facilitated interpretation by providing a graphical presentation of consumption rates by all individuals within each predator species. Largemouth bass Micropterus salmoides, walleye Sander vitreus and sauger S. canadensis were the most efficient white perch predators in both reservoirs; however, previous attempts to increase biomass of these predators have failed suggesting that successful biological control is unlikely using existing predator species in these Nebraska reservoirs.

  1. Early exposure to nonlethal predation risk by size-selective predators increases somatic growth and decreases size at adulthood in threespined sticklebacks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bell, A. M.; Dingemanse, N. J.; Hankison, S. J.; Langenhof, M. B. W.; Rollins, K.

    Predation has an important influence on life history traits in many organisms, especially when they are young. When cues of trout were present, juvenile sticklebacks grew faster. The increase in body size as a result of exposure to cues of predators was adaptive because larger individuals were more

  2. Predators induce interspecific herbivore competition for food in refuge space

    OpenAIRE

    Pallini, A.; Janssen, A.; Sabelis, M.W.

    1998-01-01

    Resource competition among herbivorous arthropods has long been viewed as unimportant because herbivore populations are controlled by predators. Although recently resurrected as an organizing force in arthropod communities on plants, there is still general agreement that resource competition among herbivores is reduced by predators. Here we show the reverse: predators induce interspecific resource competi-tion among herbivores. We found that thrips larvae (Frankliniella occidentalis) use the ...

  3. Integration of multiple intraguild predator cues for oviposition decisions by a predatory mite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walzer, Andreas; Schausberger, Peter

    2012-01-01

    In mutual intraguild predation (IGP), the role of individual guild members is strongly context dependent and, during ontogeny, can shift from an intraguild (IG) prey to a food competitor or to an IG predator. Consequently, recognition of an offspring's predator is more complex for IG than classic prey females. Thus, IG prey females should be able to modulate their oviposition decisions by integrating multiple IG predator cues and by experience. Using a guild of plant-inhabiting predatory mites sharing the spider mite Tetranychus urticae as prey and passing through ontogenetic role shifts in mutual IGP, we assessed the effects of single and combined direct cues of the IG predator Amblyseius andersoni (eggs and traces left by a female on the substrate) on prey patch selection and oviposition behaviour of naïve and IG predator-experienced IG prey females of Phytoseiulus persimilis. The IG prey females preferentially resided in patches without predator cues when the alternative patch contained traces of predator females or the cue combination. Preferential egg placement in patches without predator cues was only apparent in the choice situation with the cue combination. Experience increased the responsiveness of females exposed to the IG predator cue combination, indicated by immediate selection of the prey patch without predator cues and almost perfect oviposition avoidance in patches with the cue combination. We argue that the evolution of the ability of IG prey females to evaluate offspring's IGP risk accurately is driven by the irreversibility of oviposition and the functionally complex relationships between predator guild members. PMID:23264692

  4. Desert bighorn sheep lambing habitat: Parturition, nursery, and predation sites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karsch, Rebekah C.; Cain, James W.; Rominger, Eric M.; Goldstein, Elise J.

    2016-01-01

    Fitness of female ungulates is determined by neonate survival and lifetime reproductive success. Therefore, adult female ungulates should adopt behaviors and habitat selection patterns that enhance survival of neonates during parturition and lactation. Parturition site location may play an important role in neonatal mortality of desert bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis mexicana) when lambs are especially vulnerable to predation, but parturition sites are rarely documented for this species. Our objectives were to assess environmental characteristics at desert bighorn parturition, lamb nursery, and predation sites and to assess differences in habitat characteristics between parturition sites and nursery group sites, and predation sites and nursery group sites. We used vaginal implant transmitters (VITs) to identify parturition sites and capture neonates. We then compared elevation, slope, terrain ruggedness, and visibility at parturition, nursery, and lamb predation sites with paired random sites and compared characteristics of parturition sites and lamb predation sites to those of nursery sites. When compared to random sites, odds of a site being a parturition site were highest at intermediate slopes and decreased with increasing female visibility. Odds of a site being a predation site increased with decreasing visibility. When compared to nursery group sites, odds of a site being a parturition site had a quadratic relationship with elevation and slope, with odds being highest at intermediate elevations and intermediate slopes. When we compared predation sites to nursery sites, odds of a site being a predation were highest at low elevation areas with high visibility and high elevation areas with low visibility likely because of differences in hunting strategies of coyote (Canis latrans) and puma (Puma concolor). Parturition sites were lower in elevation and slope than nursery sites. Understanding selection of parturition sites by adult females and how habitat

  5. Development of a systemwide predator control program: Stepwise implementation of a predation index, predator control fisheries, and evaluation plan in the Columbia River Basin. Volume 2 -- Evaluation: 1993 Annual report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Willis, C.F.; Ward, D.L.

    1995-06-01

    An attempt was made to determine the extent to which northern squawfish predation on juvenile salmonids is a problem in the Columbia River Basin, and to evaluate how effectively fisheries can be used to control northern squawfish populations and reduce juvenile salmonid losses to predation. These studies were initiated as part of a basinwide program to control northern squawfish predation and reduce mortality of juvenile salmonids on their migration to the ocean. Modeling simulations based on work in the John Day Reservoir from 1982 through 1988 indicated that if northern squawfish larger than 250 mm fork length were exploited, at a rate of 10--20%, reductions in their numbers and restructuring of their populations could reduce their predation on juvenile salmonids by 50% or more. The authors evaluated the success of three test fisheries conducted in 1993--a sport-reward fishery, a dam-angling fishery, and a trap-net fishery, to achieve a 10--20% exploitation rate on northern squawfish. The authors also began evaluating the response of northern squawfish populations to sustained fisheries. In addition, the authors gathered information regarding the economic, social, and legal feasibility of sustaining each fishery, and report on the structure and function of the fish collection and distribution system

  6. Introduced mammalian predators induce behavioural changes in parental care in an endemic New Zealand bird.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melanie Massaro

    Full Text Available The introduction of predatory mammals to oceanic islands has led to the extinction of many endemic birds. Although introduced predators should favour changes that reduce predation risk in surviving bird species, the ability of island birds to respond to such novel changes remains unstudied. We tested whether novel predation risk imposed by introduced mammalian predators has altered the parental behaviour of the endemic New Zealand bellbird (Anthornis melanura. We examined parental behaviour of bellbirds at three woodland sites in New Zealand that differed in predation risk: 1 a mainland site with exotic predators present (high predation risk, 2 a mainland site with exotic predators experimentally removed (low risk recently and, 3 an off-shore island where exotic predators were never introduced (low risk always. We also compared parental behaviour of bellbirds with two closely related Tasmanian honeyeaters (Phylidonyris spp. that evolved with native nest predators (high risk always. Increased nest predation risk has been postulated to favour reduced parental activity, and we tested whether island bellbirds responded to variation in predation risk. We found that females spent more time on the nest per incubating bout with increased risk of predation, a strategy that minimised activity at the nest during incubation. Parental activity during the nestling period, measured as number of feeding visits/hr, also decreased with increasing nest predation risk across sites, and was lowest among the honeyeaters in Tasmania that evolved with native predators. These results demonstrate that some island birds are able to respond to increased risk of predation by novel predators in ways that appear adaptive. We suggest that conservation efforts may be more effective if they take advantage of the ability of island birds to respond to novel predators, especially when the elimination of exotic predators is not possible.

  7. Introduced mammalian predators induce behavioural changes in parental care in an endemic New Zealand bird

    Science.gov (United States)

    Massaro, M.; Starling-Windhof, A.; Briskie, J.V.; Martin, T.E.

    2008-01-01

    The introduction of predatory mammals to oceanic islands has led to the extension of many birds. Although introduced predators should favour changes that reduce predation risk in surviving bird species, the ability of island birds to respond to such novel changes remains unstudied. We tested whether novel predation risk imposed by introduced mammalian predators has altered the parental behaviour of the endemic New Zealand bellbird (Anthomis melanura). We examined parental behaviour of billbnirds at three woodlands sites in New Zealand that differed in predation risk: 1) a mainland site with exotic predators present (high predation risk), 2) a mainland site with exotic predators experimentally removed (low risk recently) and, 3) an off-shore island where exotic predators were never introduced (low risk always). We also compared parental behavior of bellbirds with two closely related Tasmanian honeyeaters (Phylidonyris spp) that evolved with native nest predators (high risk always). Increased nest predation risk has been postulated to favour reduced parental activity, and we tested whether island bellbirds responded to variation in predation risk. We found that females spent more time on the nest per incubating bout with increased risk of predation, a strategy that minimised activity at the nest during incubation. Parental activity during the nestling period, measured as number of feeding visits/hr, also decreased with increasing nest predation risk across sites, and was lowest among the honeyeaters in Tasmania that evolved with native predators. These results demonstrates that some island birds are able to respond to increased risk of predation by novel predators in ways that appear adaptive. We suggest that conservation efforts may be more effective if they take advantage of the ability of island birds to respond to novel predators, especially when the elimination of exotic predators is not possible.

  8. An indirect veneer technique for simple and esthetic treatment of anterior hypoplastic teeth

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amit Khatri

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available This study describes a technique for treating anterior hypoplastic teeth using indirect nanocomposite veneer restoration. The prime advantage of an indirect veneer technique is that it provides an esthetic and conservative result. One of the most frequent reasons that patients seek dental care is discolored anterior teeth. Although treatment options such as removal of surface stains, bleaching, microabrasion or macroabrasion, veneering, and placement of porcelain crowns are available, conservative approach such as veneer preserves the natural tooth as much as possible. Full veneers are recommended for the restoration of localized defects or areas of intrinsic discoloration, which are caused by deeper internal stains or enamel defects. Indirectly fabricated veneers are much less sensitive compared to a operator′s technique and if multiple teeth are to be veneered, indirect veneers can be usually placed much more expeditiously. Indirect veneers last much longer than the direct veneers. Therefore, indirectly fabricated veneers are more advantageous than directly fabricated veneers in many cases.

  9. Interaction between two predator mites of Tetranychus urticae koch (Acariformes: Tetranychidae) in laboratory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arguelles R, Angelica; Plazas, Natali; Bustos R, Alexander; Cantor R, Fernando; Rodriguez, Daniel; Hilarion, Alejandra

    2013-01-01

    Tetranychus urticae (Acari: Tetranychidae) is an important pest of ornamental crops. A species of predatory mite used for its control is Neoseiulus californicus and Phytoseiulus persimilis (Acari: Phytoseiidae). This research proposes the use of joint releases of the two cited predators for the control of the pest. Several situations leading to interaction were evaluated: high density of one predator and low density of the other one, being the prey present or absent. The scenario with predators in equal densities and in presence of the prey was also evaluated. When a predator is in higher density and the prey present, the predator with the lower density increases the interference with the consumption of preys by the predator with higher density. On the other hand, when the consumption of T. urticae reduces, intraguild predation increases. P. persimilis shows intraguild predation behavior when t. urticae is absent and N. californicus is present, consuming all developmental stages of its conspecific. Instead, N. californicus only feed on conspecific larvae, when the fitofagous was absent and P. persimilis was present. When the two predators were present in the same assemblage and with the same population density, the quantity of T. urticae consumed by both of them was not higher than the consumed one when each predator was present in separate way.

  10. Common, but Commonly Overlooked: Red-bellied Woodpeckers as Songbird Nest Predators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirsten R. Hazler; Dawn E.W. Drumtra; Matthew R. Marshall; Robert J. Cooper; Paul B. Hamel

    2004-01-01

    Woodpeckers in North America are not widely recognized as nest predators. In this paper, we describe several eyewitness accounts of songbird nest predation by Red-bellied Woodpeckers (Melanerpes carolinus), document evidence that songbirds recognize woodpeckers as nest predators, and show that our observations are consistent with previously published...

  11. Reduction in predator defense in the presence of neighbors in a colonial fish.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Franziska C Schädelin

    Full Text Available Predation pressure has long been considered a leading explanation of colonies, where close neighbors may reduce predation via dilution, alarming or group predator attacks. Attacking predators may be costly in terms of energy and survival, leading to the question of how neighbors contribute to predator deterrence in relationship to each other. Two hypotheses explaining the relative efforts made by neighbors are byproduct-mutualism, which occurs when breeders inadvertently attack predators by defending their nests, and reciprocity, which occurs when breeders deliberately exchange predator defense efforts with neighbors. Most studies investigating group nest defense have been performed with birds. However, colonial fish may constitute a more practical model system for an experimental approach because of the greater ability of researchers to manipulate their environment. We investigated in the colonial fish, Neolamprologus caudopunctatus, whether prospecting pairs preferred to breed near conspecifics or solitarily, and how breeders invested in anti-predator defense in relation to neighbors. In a simple choice test, prospecting pairs selected breeding sites close to neighbors versus a solitary site. Predators were then sequentially presented to the newly established test pairs, the previously established stimulus pairs or in between the two pairs. Test pairs attacked the predator eight times more frequently when they were presented on their non-neighbor side compared to between the two breeding sites, where stimulus pairs maintained high attack rates. Thus, by joining an established pair, test pairs were able to reduce their anti-predator efforts near neighbors, at no apparent cost to the stimulus pairs. These findings are unlikely to be explained by reciprocity or byproduct-mutualism. Our results instead suggest a commensal relationship in which new pairs exploit the high anti-predator efforts of established pairs, which invest similarly with or

  12. Antipredatory reaction of the leopard gecko Eublepharis macularius to snake predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landová, Eva; Musilová, Veronika; Polák, Jakub; Sedláčková, Kristýna; Frynta, Daniel

    2016-10-01

    Ability to recognize a risk of predation and react with adaptive antipredatory behavior can enhance fitness, but has some costs as well. Animals can either specifically react on the most dangerous predators (threat-sensitive avoidance) or they have safe but costly general wariness avoiding all potential predators. The level of threat may depend on the predator's foraging ecology and distribution with the prey with sympatric and specialist species being the most dangerous. We used 2 choice trials to investigate antipredatory behavior of captive born and wild-caught leopard geckos confronted with different snake predators from 2 families (Colubridae, Boidae) varying in foraging ecology and sympatric/allopatric distribution with the geckos. Predator-naïve subadult individuals have general wariness, explore both chemically and visually, and perform antipredatory postures toward a majority of snake predators regardless of their sympatry/allopatry or food specialization. The most exaggerated antipredatory postures in both subadult and adult geckos were toward 2 sympatric snake species, the spotted whip snake Hemorrhois ravergieri , an active forager, and the red sand boa Eryx johnii , a subterranean snake with a sit-and-wait strategy. In contrast, also subterranean but allopatric the Kenyan sand boa Eryx colubrinus did not elicit any antipredatory reaction. We conclude that the leopard gecko possesses an innate general antipredatory reaction to different species of snake predators, while a specific reaction to 2 particular sympatric species can be observed. Moreover, adult wild caught geckos show lower reactivity compared with the captive born ones, presumably due to an experience of a real predation event that can hardly be simulated under laboratory conditions.

  13. Fish predation by semi-aquatic spiders: a global pattern.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Nyffeler

    Full Text Available More than 80 incidences of fish predation by semi-aquatic spiders--observed at the fringes of shallow freshwater streams, rivers, lakes, ponds, swamps, and fens--are reviewed. We provide evidence that fish predation by semi-aquatic spiders is geographically widespread, occurring on all continents except Antarctica. Fish predation by spiders appears to be more common in warmer areas between 40° S and 40° N. The fish captured by spiders, usually ranging from 2-6 cm in length, are among the most common fish taxa occurring in their respective geographic area (e.g., mosquitofish [Gambusia spp.] in the southeastern USA, fish of the order Characiformes in the Neotropics, killifish [Aphyosemion spp.] in Central and West Africa, as well as Australian native fish of the genera Galaxias, Melanotaenia, and Pseudomugil. Naturally occurring fish predation has been witnessed in more than a dozen spider species from the superfamily Lycosoidea (families Pisauridae, Trechaleidae, and Lycosidae, in two species of the superfamily Ctenoidea (family Ctenidae, and in one species of the superfamily Corinnoidea (family Liocranidae. The majority of reports on fish predation by spiders referred to pisaurid spiders of the genera Dolomedes and Nilus (>75% of observed incidences. There is laboratory evidence that spiders from several more families (e.g., the water spider Argyroneta aquatica [Cybaeidae], the intertidal spider Desis marina [Desidae], and the 'swimming' huntsman spider Heteropoda natans [Sparassidae] predate fish as well. Our finding of such a large diversity of spider families being engaged in fish predation is novel. Semi-aquatic spiders captured fish whose body length exceeded the spiders' body length (the captured fish being, on average, 2.2 times as long as the spiders. Evidence suggests that fish prey might be an occasional prey item of substantial nutritional importance.

  14. Fish predation by semi-aquatic spiders: a global pattern.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nyffeler, Martin; Pusey, Bradley J

    2014-01-01

    More than 80 incidences of fish predation by semi-aquatic spiders--observed at the fringes of shallow freshwater streams, rivers, lakes, ponds, swamps, and fens--are reviewed. We provide evidence that fish predation by semi-aquatic spiders is geographically widespread, occurring on all continents except Antarctica. Fish predation by spiders appears to be more common in warmer areas between 40° S and 40° N. The fish captured by spiders, usually ranging from 2-6 cm in length, are among the most common fish taxa occurring in their respective geographic area (e.g., mosquitofish [Gambusia spp.] in the southeastern USA, fish of the order Characiformes in the Neotropics, killifish [Aphyosemion spp.] in Central and West Africa, as well as Australian native fish of the genera Galaxias, Melanotaenia, and Pseudomugil). Naturally occurring fish predation has been witnessed in more than a dozen spider species from the superfamily Lycosoidea (families Pisauridae, Trechaleidae, and Lycosidae), in two species of the superfamily Ctenoidea (family Ctenidae), and in one species of the superfamily Corinnoidea (family Liocranidae). The majority of reports on fish predation by spiders referred to pisaurid spiders of the genera Dolomedes and Nilus (>75% of observed incidences). There is laboratory evidence that spiders from several more families (e.g., the water spider Argyroneta aquatica [Cybaeidae], the intertidal spider Desis marina [Desidae], and the 'swimming' huntsman spider Heteropoda natans [Sparassidae]) predate fish as well. Our finding of such a large diversity of spider families being engaged in fish predation is novel. Semi-aquatic spiders captured fish whose body length exceeded the spiders' body length (the captured fish being, on average, 2.2 times as long as the spiders). Evidence suggests that fish prey might be an occasional prey item of substantial nutritional importance.

  15. and Indigenous Indirect Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annapurna S. Agasthya

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Brucellosis is one of the most important reemerging zoonoses in many countries. Brucellosis is caused by Gram-negative coccobacillus belonging to genus Brucella. Human brucellosis often makes the diagnosis difficult. The symptoms and clinical signs most commonly reported are fever, fatigue, malaise, chills, sweats headaches, myalgia, arthralgia, and weight loss. Some cases have been presented with only joint pain, lower backache, and involuntary limb movement, burning feet, or ischemic heart attacks. The focus of this work was to develop a highly sensitive and specific indirect ELISA by using smooth lipopolysaccharide antigen of Brucella abortus 99 to detect anti-Brucella antibodies at Project Directorate on Animal Disease Monitoring and Surveillance. Serum samples collected from 652 individuals in whom fever was not the major symptom but the complaint was of joint pain, headache, lower backache, and so forth, were screened by Rose Bengal plate agglutination test (RBPT and standard tube agglutination test (STAT. Subsequent testing of sera by indigenous indirect ELISA detected 20 samples positive (3.6% seroprevalence, and indirect ELISA was found to be more sensitive than RBPT and STAT. The seroprevalence in South Karnataka was 2.14%, and in North Karnataka it was 0.92%.

  16. Coastal niches for terrestrial predators: a stable isotope study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mellbrand, K.; Hamback, P.A., E-mail: peter.hamback@botan.su.se [Stockholm Univ., Dept. of Botany, Stockholm (Sweden)

    2010-12-15

    The purpose of this study was to identify the use of marine versus terrestrial food items by terrestrial arthropod predators on Baltic Sea shores. The inflow of marine nutrients in the area consists mainly of marine algal detritus and emerging aquatic insects (e.g., chironomids). Diets of coastal arthropods were examined using carbon and nitrogen stable isotope analysis in a two source mixing model. The results suggest that spiders are the terrestrial predators mainly utilizing nutrients and energy of marine origin on Baltic Sea shores, whereas insect predators such as beetles and heteropterans mainly utilize nutrients and energy derived from terrestrial sources, possibly owing to differences in hunting behaviour. That spiders are the predators which benefit the most from the marine inflow suggest that eventual effects of marine subsidies for the coastal ecosystem as a whole are likely mediated by spiders. (author)

  17. Coastal niches for terrestrial predators: a stable isotope study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mellbrand, K.; Hamback, P.A.

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to identify the use of marine versus terrestrial food items by terrestrial arthropod predators on Baltic Sea shores. The inflow of marine nutrients in the area consists mainly of marine algal detritus and emerging aquatic insects (e.g., chironomids). Diets of coastal arthropods were examined using carbon and nitrogen stable isotope analysis in a two source mixing model. The results suggest that spiders are the terrestrial predators mainly utilizing nutrients and energy of marine origin on Baltic Sea shores, whereas insect predators such as beetles and heteropterans mainly utilize nutrients and energy derived from terrestrial sources, possibly owing to differences in hunting behaviour. That spiders are the predators which benefit the most from the marine inflow suggest that eventual effects of marine subsidies for the coastal ecosystem as a whole are likely mediated by spiders. (author)

  18. Informing recovery in a human-transformed landscape: Drought-mediated coexistence alters population trends of an imperiled salamander and invasive predators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hossack, Blake R.; Honeycutt, Richard; Sigafus, Brent H.; Muths, Erin L.; Crawford, Catherine L.; Jones, Thomas R.; Sorensen, Jeff A.; Rorabaugh, James C.; Chambert, Thierry

    2017-01-01

    Understanding the additive or interactive threats of habitat transformation and invasive species is critical for conservation, especially where climate change is expected to increase the severity or frequency of drought. In the arid southwestern USA, this combination of stressors has caused widespread declines of native aquatic and semi-aquatic species. Achieving resilience to drought and other effects of climate change may depend upon continued management, so understanding the combined effects of stressors is important. We used Bayesian hierarchical models fitted with 10-years of pond-based monitoring surveys for the federally-endangered Sonoran Tiger Salamander (Ambystoma mavortium stebbinsi) and invasive predators (fishes and American Bullfrogs, Lithobates catesbeianus) that threaten native species. We estimated trends in occupancy of salamanders and invasive predators while accounting for hydrological dynamics of ponds, then used a two-species interaction model to directly estimate how invasive predators affected salamander occupancy. We also tested a conceptual model that predicted that drought, by limiting the distribution of invasive predators, could ultimately benefit native species. Even though occupancy of invasive predators was stationary and their presence in a pond reduced the probability of salamander presence by 23%, occupancy of Sonoran Tiger Salamanders increased, annually, by 2.2%. Occupancy of salamanders and invasive predators both declined dramatically following the 5th consecutive year of drought. Salamander occupancy recovered quickly after return to non-drought conditions, while occupancy of invasive predators remained suppressed. Models that incorporated three time-lagged periods (1 to 4 years) of local moisture conditions confirmed that salamanders and invasive predators responded differently to drought, reflecting how life-history strategies shape responses to disturbances. The positive 10-year trend in salamander occupancy and their

  19. A long-term study on crustacean plankton of a shallow tropical lake: the role of invertebrate predation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marlene S. Arcifa

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The primary factor that governs the size and species composition of zooplankton is still a controversial issue and temperature is considered the main factor responsible for latitudinal differences. In waters with a narrow temperature range, such as in the tropics, predation may be a more important factor. Nearly three decades of intermittent studies of the crustacean plankton in a shallow tropical lake revealed that the main event that led to their restructuring was the appearance of a second predator, the water mite Krendowskia sp. The new predator and larvae of the dipteran Chaoborus brasiliensis Theobald exerted a combined, although asymmetrical effect on microcrustaceans. The period when the mite was detected was followed by the restructuring of the crustacean plankton community. Predation by these two invertebrates emerged as the factor responsible for community changes, involving an increased contribution of copepods and decreases in the relative abundance of smaller cladoceran species. In the short term, the mite caused a decrease in species richness and the annual mean instantaneous composition of cladocerans, a predominance of large-sized species (Daphnia ambigua Scourfield and Daphnia gessneri Herbst and the virtual disappearance of small species (e.g., Bosmina tubicen Brehm. The long-term impact resulted in increased species richness and the dominance of large and medium-sized cladocerans, such as D. gessneri and Ceriodaphnia richardi Sars. The larger body size of three cladocerans, the two Daphnia species and B. tubicen, in the long term, may be a response to the dominant predator, Chaoborus. The seasonal variation in the predator abundance, mainly Chaoborus larvae, allowed the prey to recover during the cool season. The copepods Tropocyclops prasinus meridionalis (Fischer and Thermocyclops decipiens Kiefer were less affected by predation than the cladocerans; their contribution to the crustacean plankton increased 12-28% after the

  20. Habitat stability, predation risk and 'memory syndromes'.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalesman, S; Rendle, A; Dall, S R X

    2015-05-27

    Habitat stability and predation pressure are thought to be major drivers in the evolutionary maintenance of behavioural syndromes, with trait covariance only occurring within specific habitats. However, animals also exhibit behavioural plasticity, often through memory formation. Memory formation across traits may be linked, with covariance in memory traits (memory syndromes) selected under particular environmental conditions. This study tests whether the pond snail, Lymnaea stagnalis, demonstrates consistency among memory traits ('memory syndrome') related to threat avoidance and foraging. We used eight populations originating from three different habitat types: i) laboratory populations (stable habitat, predator-free); ii) river populations (fairly stable habitat, fish predation); and iii) ditch populations (unstable habitat, invertebrate predation). At a population level, there was a negative relationship between memories related to threat avoidance and food selectivity, but no consistency within habitat type. At an individual level, covariance between memory traits was dependent on habitat. Laboratory populations showed no covariance among memory traits, whereas river populations showed a positive correlation between food memories, and ditch populations demonstrated a negative relationship between threat memory and food memories. Therefore, selection pressures among habitats appear to act independently on memory trait covariation at an individual level and the average response within a population.

  1. 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.

  2. High trees increase sunflower seed predation by birds in an agricultural landscape of Israel

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica eSchäckermann

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Natural habitats in agricultural landscapes promote agro-ecosystem services but little is known about negative effects (dis-services derived by natural habitats such as crop seed predation. Birds are important seed predators and use high landscape structures to perch and hide. High trees in agricultural landscapes may therefore drive seed predation. We examined if the presence, the distance and the percentages of high trees (tree height >5 m and the percentages of natural habitat surrounding sunflower fields, increased seed predation by birds in Israel. At the field scale, we assessed seed predation across a sample grid of an entire field. At the landscape scale, we assessed seed predation at the field margins and interiors of 20 sunflower fields. Seed predation was estimated as the percentage of removed seeds from sunflower heads. Distances of sample points to the closest high tree and percentage of natural habitat and of high trees in a 1km radius surrounding the fields were measured.We found that seed predation increased with decreasing distance to the closest high tree at the field and landscape scale. At the landscape scale, the percentage of high trees and natural habitat did not increase seed predation. Seed predation in the fields increased by 37 %, with a maximum seed predation of 92 %, when a high tree was available within zero to 50 m to the sunflower fields. If the closest high tree was further away, seed predation was less than 5 %. Sunflower seed predation by birds can be reduced, when avoiding sowing sunflowers within a radius of 50 m to high trees. Farmers should plan to grow crops, not sensitive to bird seed predation, closer to trees to eventually benefit from ecosystem services provided by birds, such as predation of pest insects, while avoiding these locations for growing crops sensitive to bird seed predation. Such management recommendations are directing towards sustainable agricultural landscapes.

  3. Costs and limits of dosage response to predation risk: to what extent can tadpoles invest in anti-predator morphology?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teplitsky, Céline; Plénet, Sandrine; Joly, Pierre

    2005-09-01

    Inducible defences have long been considered as a polyphenism opposing defended and undefended morphs. However, in nature, preys are exposed to various levels of predation risk and scale their investment in defence to actual predation risk. Still, among the traits that are involved in the defence, some are specific to one predator type while others act as a more generalised defence. The existence of defence costs could prevent an individual investing in all these traits simultaneously. In this study, we investigate the impact of an increasing level of predator density (stickleback, Gasterosteus aculeatus) on the expression of morphological inducible defences in tadpoles of Rana dalmatina. In this species, investment in tail length and tail muscle is a stickleback-specific response while increased tail fin depth is a more general defence. As expected, we found a relationship between investment in defence and level of risk through the responses of tail fin depth and tail length. We also found an exponential increase of defence cost, notably expressed by convex decrease of growth and developmental rates. We found a relative independence of investment in the different traits that compose the defence, revealing a high potential for fine tuning the expression of defended phenotypes with respect to local ecological conditions.

  4. Do Père David's deer lose memories of their ancestral predators?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chunwang Li

    Full Text Available Whether prey retains antipredator behavior after a long period of predator relaxation is an important question in predator-prey evolution. Père David's deer have been raised in enclosures for more than 1200 years and this isolation provides an opportunity to study whether Père David's deer still respond to the cues of their ancestral predators or to novel predators. We played back the sounds of crows (familiar sound and domestic dogs (familiar non-predators, of tigers and wolves (ancestral predators, and of lions (potential naïve predator to Père David's deer in paddocks, and blank sounds to the control group, and videoed the behavior of the deer during the experiment. We also showed life-size photo models of dog, leopard, bear, tiger, wolf, and lion to the deer and video taped their responses after seeing these models. Père David's deer stared at and approached the hidden loudspeaker when they heard the roars of tiger or lion. The deer listened to tiger roars longer, approached to tiger roars more and spent more time staring at the tiger model. The stags were also found to forage less in the trials of tiger roars than that of other sound playbacks. Additionally, it took longer for the deer to restore their normal behavior after they heard tiger roars, which was longer than that after the trial of other sound playbacks. Moreover, the deer were only found to walk away after hearing the sounds of tiger and wolf. Therefore, the tiger was probably the main predator for Père David's deer in ancient time. Our study implies that Père David's deer still retain the memories of the acoustic and visual cues of their ancestral predators in spite of the long term isolation from natural habitat.

  5. Molecular analysis of the gut contents of Harmonia axyridis (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) as a method for detecting intra-guild predation by this species on aphidophagous predators other than coccinellids

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ingels, B.; Aebi, A.; Hautier, L.; Van Leeuwen, T.; De Clercq, P.

    2013-01-01

    Several studies have demonstrated that the invasive ladybird Harmonia axyridis is a strong intra-guild predator of native species of ladybird. Laboratory studies have shown that H. axyridis can be an intra-guild predator of aphid predators other than coccinellids, including the hoverfly Episyrphus

  6. Reactor Materials Program probability of indirectly--induced failure of L and P reactor process water piping

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Daugherty, W.L.

    1988-01-01

    The design basis accident for the Savannah River Production Reactors is the abrupt double-ended guillotine break (DEGB) of a large process water pipe. This accident is not considered credible in light of the low applied stresses and the inherent ductility of the piping material. The Reactor Materials Program was initiated to provide the technical basis for an alternate credible design basis accident. One aspect of this work is to determine the probability of the DEGB; to show that in addition to being incredible, it is also highly improbable. The probability of a DEGB is broken into two parts: failure by direct means, and indirectly-induced failure. Failure of the piping by direct means can only be postulated to occur if an undetected crack grows to the point of instability, causing a large pipe break. While this accident is not as severe as a DEGB, it provides a conservative upper bound on the probability of a direct DEGB of the piping. The second part of this evaluation calculates the probability of piping failure by indirect causes. Indirect failure of the piping can be triggered by an earthquake which causes other reactor components or the reactor building to fall on the piping or pull it from its supports. Since indirectly-induced failure of the piping will not always produce consequences as severe as a DEGB, this gives a conservative estimate of the probability of an indirectly- induced DEGB. This second part, indirectly-induced pipe failure, is the subject of this report. Failure by seismic loads in the piping itself will be covered in a separate report on failure by direct causes. This report provides a detailed evaluation of L reactor. A walkdown of P reactor and an analysis of the P reactor building provide the basis for extending the L reactor results to P reactor

  7. Olfactory systems and neural circuits that modulate predator odor fear

    OpenAIRE

    Takahashi, Lorey K.

    2014-01-01

    When prey animals detect the odor of a predator a constellation of fear-related autonomic, endocrine, and behavioral responses rapidly occur to facilitate survival. How olfactory sensory systems process predator odor and channel that information to specific brain circuits is a fundamental issue that is not clearly understood. However, research in the last 15 years has begun to identify some of the essential features of the sensory detection systems and brain structures that underlie predator ...

  8. Development of indirect sandwich ELISA for determination of excretory-secretory antigens of Fasciola hepatica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Libertad Alzamora-Gonzales

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Fasciolosis is a cosmopolitan parasitosis medical-veterinary importance caused by Fasciola hepatica, which affects sheep, goats and cattle; and it affects man accidentally causing an epidemic-endemic infection difficult to diagnose. The aim was to develop an indirect sandwich ELISA with 3 antibodies for detecting excretory-secretory antigens of Fasciola hepatica (ESFh. For the development of indirect sandwich ELISA were used, as capture antibody, mouse polyclonal antibodies anti ESFh and polyclonal antibodies rabbit anti-ESFh as detection antibody, at the concentrations of 10 and 5 µg/mL respectively. The conjugate used was mouse monoclonal anti- total immunoglobulins rabbit linked to peroxidase (1/1000. Were analized 31 sheep fecal samples, and the results were compared with those obtained by direct coproparasitological examination (DC and counterimmunoelectrophoresis (CIEP. The detection limit obtained for indirect sandwich ELISA was 100 ng/mL. The test had a 100% sensitivity, 96.6% specificity, positive and negative predictive values of 50% and 96.6% respectively, in relation to DC test. Comparing with CIEP the specificity obtained for indirect sandwich ELISA was 93.5% and a negative predictive value of 100%. We concluded that indirect sandwich ELISA designed is able to detect metabolic antigens in ovine feces samples and can be used for Fasciola hepatica diagnosis.

  9. Ecomorphology and disease: cryptic effects of parasitism on host habitat use, thermoregulation, and predator avoidance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goodman, Brett A; Johnson, Pieter T J

    2011-03-01

    Parasites can cause dramatic changes in the phenotypes of their hosts, sometimes leading to a higher probability of predation and parasite transmission. Because an organism's morphology directly affects its locomotion, even subtle changes in key morphological traits may affect survival and behavior. However, despite the ubiquity of parasites in natural communities, few studies have incorporated parasites into ecomorphological research. Here, we evaluated the effects of parasite-induced changes in host phenotype on the habitat use, thermal biology, and simulated predator-escape ability of Pacific chorus frogs (Pseudacris regilla) in natural environments. Frogs with parasite-induced limb malformations were more likely to use ground microhabitats relative to vertical refugia and selected less-angled perches closer to the ground in comparison with normal frogs. Although both groups had similar levels of infection, malformed frogs used warmer microhabitats, which resulted in higher body temperatures. Likely as a result of their morphological abnormalities, malformed frogs allowed a simulated predator to approach closer before escaping and escaped shorter distances relative to normal frogs. These data indicate that parasite-induced morphological changes can significantly alter host behavior and habitat use, highlighting the importance of incorporating the ubiquitous, albeit cryptic, role of parasites into ecomorphological research.

  10. A predation cost to bold fish in the wild

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hulthén, Kaj; Chapman, Ben; Nilsson, Anders P.

    2017-01-01

    in the animal kingdom. Theory predicts that individual behavioural types differ in a cost-benefit trade-off where bolder individuals benefit from greater access to resources while paying higher predation-risk costs. However, explicitly linking predation events to individual behaviour under natural conditions...

  11. Food acquisition and predator avoidance in a Neotropical rodent

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Suselbeek, Lennart; Emsens, Willem-Jan; Hirsch, Ben T.; Kays, Roland; Rowcliffe, J. Marcus; Zamora-Gutierrez, Veronica; Jansen, Patrick A.

    Foraging activity in animals reflects a compromise between acquiring food and avoiding predation. The risk allocation hypothesis predicts that prey animals optimize this balance by concentrating their foraging activity at times of relatively low predation risk, as much as their energy status

  12. Determining sensitive stages for learning to detect predators in ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    2014-07-10

    Jul 10, 2014 ... Successful survival and reproduction of prey organisms depend on their ability to detect their potential predators accurately and respond ... Numerous aquatic prey including insects, ... window (pre-gastrulation, neurulation, post-hatching or ..... their increased encounter rates with predators provide them the.

  13. Food aquisition and predator avoidance in a Neotropical rodent

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Suselbeek, L.; Emsens, W.J.; Hirsch, B.T.; Kays, R.; Rowcliffe, J.M.; Zamore-Gutierrez, V.; Jansen, P.A.

    2014-01-01

    Foraging activity in animals reflects a compromise between acquiring food and avoiding predation. The Risk Allocation Hypothesis predicts that prey animals optimize this balance by concentrating their foraging activity at times of relatively low predation risk, as much as their energy status

  14. Trait-mediated trophic cascade creates enemy-free space for nesting hummingbirds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greeney, Harold F; Meneses, M Rocio; Hamilton, Chris E; Lichter-Marck, Eli; Mannan, R William; Snyder, Noel; Snyder, Helen; Wethington, Susan M; Dyer, Lee A

    2015-09-01

    The indirect effects of predators on nonadjacent trophic levels, mediated through traits of intervening species, are collectively known as trait-mediated trophic cascades. Although birds are important predators in terrestrial ecosystems, clear examples of trait-mediated indirect effects involving bird predators have almost never been documented. Such indirect effects are important for structuring ecological communities and are likely to be negatively impacted by habitat fragmentation, climate change, and other factors that reduce abundance of top predators. We demonstrate that hummingbirds in Arizona realize increased breeding success when nesting in association with hawks. An enemy-free nesting space is created when jays, an important source of mortality for hummingbird nests, alter their foraging behavior in the presence of their hawk predators.

  15. Effect of downed woody debris on small mammal anti-predator behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Travis M. Hinkelman; John L. Orrock; Susan C Loeb

    2011-01-01

    Anti-Predator behavior can affect prey growth, reproduction, survival, and generate emergent effects in food webs. Small mammals often lower the cost of predation by altering their behavior in response to shrubs, but the importance of other microhabitat features, such as downed woody debris, for anti-predator behavior is unknown. We used giving-up densities to quantify...

  16. Use of artificial nests to investigate predation on freshwater turtle nests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michael N. Marchand; John A. Litvaitis; Thomas J. Maier; Richard M. DeGraaf

    2002-01-01

    Habitat fragmentation has raised concerns that populations of generalist predators have increased and are affecting a diverse group of prey. Previous research has included the use of artificial nests to investigate the role of predation on birds that nest on or near the ground. Because predation also is a major factor limiting populations of freshwater turtles, we...

  17. Integration of multiple cues allows threat-sensitive anti-intraguild predator responses in predatory mites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walzer, Andreas; Schausberger, Peter

    2013-01-01

    Intraguild (IG) prey is commonly confronted with multiple IG predator species. However, the IG predation (IGP) risk for prey is not only dependent on the predator species, but also on inherent (intraspecific) characteristics of a given IG predator such as its life-stage, sex or gravidity and the associated prey needs. Thus, IG prey should have evolved the ability to integrate multiple IG predator cues, which should allow both inter- and intraspecific threat-sensitive anti-predator responses. Using a guild of plant-inhabiting predatory mites sharing spider mites as prey, we evaluated the effects of single and combined cues (eggs and/or chemical traces left by a predator female on the substrate) of the low risk IG predator Neoseiulus californicus and the high risk IG predator Amblyseius andersoni on time, distance and path shape parameters of the larval IG prey Phytoseiulus persimilis. IG prey discriminated between traces of the low and high risk IG predator, with and without additional presence of their eggs, indicating interspecific threat-sensitivity. The behavioural changes were manifest in distance moved, activity and pa