WorldWideScience

Sample records for predator populations effects

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  2. Effects of predation and dispersal on Mastomys natalensis population dynamics in Tanzanian maize fields

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vibe-Petersen, Solveig; Leirs, Herwig; de Bruyn, L

    2006-01-01

    ), excluding predators by nets and attracting avian predators by nest boxes and perch poles. Because dispersal of the rodents could mask the predation pressure treatment effects, control and predator exclusion treatments were repeated with enclosed rodent populations. 3.  Population growth during the annual...... risk. Reducing dispersal of rodents removed the effect of predation on population growth and peak size, suggesting that local predators may play a role in driving rodent dispersal, but have otherwise little direct effect on population dynamics....

  3. 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 ...

  4. 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.

  5. It's a bear market: evolutionary and ecological effects of predation on two wild sockeye salmon populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, J E; Hard, J J; Naish, K A; Peterson, D; Hilborn, R; Hauser, L

    2016-05-01

    Predation can affect both phenotypic variation and population productivity in the wild, but quantifying evolutionary and demographic effects of predation in natural environments is challenging. The aim of this study was to estimate selection differentials and coefficients associated with brown bear (Ursus arctos) predation in wild sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) populations spawning in pristine habitat that is often subject to intense predation pressure. Using reconstructed genetic pedigrees, individual reproductive success (RS) was estimated in two sockeye salmon populations for two consecutive brood years with very different predation intensities across brood years. Phenotypic data on individual adult body length, body depth, stream entry timing and reproductive lifespan were used to calculate selection coefficients based on RS, and genetic variance components were estimated using animal models. Bears consistently killed larger and more recently arrived adults, although selection differentials were small. In both populations, mean RS was higher in the brood year experiencing lower predation intensity. Selection coefficients were similar across brood years with different levels of predation, often indicating stabilizing selection on reproductive lifespan as well as directional selection for longer reproductive lifespan. Despite these selection pressures, genetic covariation of morphology, phenology and lifespan appears to have maintained variation in spawner body size and stream entry timing in both populations. Our results therefore suggest considerable demographic but limited evolutionary effects of bear predation in the two study populations.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  7. 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.

  8. Uncoupling the effects of seed predation and seed dispersal by granivorous ants on plant population dynamics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xavier Arnan

    Full Text Available Secondary seed dispersal is an important plant-animal interaction, which is central to understanding plant population and community dynamics. Very little information is still available on the effects of dispersal on plant demography and, particularly, for ant-seed dispersal interactions. As many other interactions, seed dispersal by animals involves costs (seed predation and benefits (seed dispersal, the balance of which determines the outcome of the interaction. Separate quantification of each of them is essential in order to understand the effects of this interaction. To address this issue, we have successfully separated and analyzed the costs and benefits of seed dispersal by seed-harvesting ants on the plant population dynamics of three shrub species with different traits. To that aim a stochastic, spatially-explicit individually-based simulation model has been implemented based on actual data sets. The results from our simulation model agree with theoretical models of plant response dependent on seed dispersal, for one plant species, and ant-mediated seed predation, for another one. In these cases, model predictions were close to the observed values at field. Nonetheless, these ecological processes did not affect in anyway a third species, for which the model predictions were far from the observed values. This indicates that the balance between costs and benefits associated to secondary seed dispersal is clearly related to specific traits. This study is one of the first works that analyze tradeoffs of secondary seed dispersal on plant population dynamics, by disentangling the effects of related costs and benefits. We suggest analyzing the effects of interactions on population dynamics as opposed to merely analyzing the partners and their interaction strength.

  9. On the stability analysis of a general discrete-time population model involving predation and Allee effects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Merdan, H.; Duman, O.

    2009-01-01

    This paper presents the stability analysis of equilibrium points of a general discrete-time population dynamics involving predation with and without Allee effects which occur at low population density. The mathematical analysis and numerical simulations show that the Allee effect has a stabilizing role on the local stability of the positive equilibrium points of this model.

  10. Population Variation in the Life History of a Land Fish, Alticus arnoldorum, and the Effects of Predation and Density.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edward R M Platt

    Full Text Available Life history variation can often reflect differences in age-specific mortality within populations, with the general expectation that reproduction should be shifted away from ages experiencing increased mortality. Investigators of life history in vertebrates frequently focus on the impact of predation, but there is increasing evidence that predation may have unexpected impacts on population density that in turn prompt unexpected changes in life history. There are also other reasons why density might impact life history independently of predation or mortality more generally. We investigated the consequences of predation and density on life history variation among populations of the Pacific leaping blenny, Alticus arnoldorum. This fish from the island of Guam spends its adult life out of the water on rocks in the splash zone, where it is vulnerable to predation and can be expected to be sensitive to changes in population density that impact resource availability. We found populations invested more in reproduction as predation decreased, while growth rate varied primarily in response to population density. These differences in life history among populations are likely plastic given the extensive gene flow among populations revealed by a previous study. The influence of predation and density on life history was unlikely to have operated independently of each other, with predation rate tending to be associated with reduced population densities. Taken together, our results suggest predation and density can have complex influences on life history, and that plastic life history traits could allow populations to persist in new or rapidly changing environments.

  11. 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.

  12. Environmental forcing and Southern Ocean marine predator populations: effects of climate change and variability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trathan, P N; Forcada, J; Murphy, E J

    2007-12-29

    The Southern Ocean is a major component within the global ocean and climate system and potentially the location where the most rapid climate change is most likely to happen, particularly in the high-latitude polar regions. In these regions, even small temperature changes can potentially lead to major environmental perturbations. Climate change is likely to be regional and may be expressed in various ways, including alterations to climate and weather patterns across a variety of time-scales that include changes to the long interdecadal background signals such as the development of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO). Oscillating climate signals such as ENSO potentially provide a unique opportunity to explore how biological communities respond to change. This approach is based on the premise that biological responses to shorter-term sub-decadal climate variability signals are potentially the best predictor of biological responses over longer time-scales. Around the Southern Ocean, marine predator populations show periodicity in breeding performance and productivity, with relationships with the environment driven by physical forcing from the ENSO region in the Pacific. Wherever examined, these relationships are congruent with mid-trophic-level processes that are also correlated with environmental variability. The short-term changes to ecosystem structure and function observed during ENSO events herald potential long-term changes that may ensue following regional climate change. For example, in the South Atlantic, failure of Antarctic krill recruitment will inevitably foreshadow recruitment failures in a range of higher trophic-level marine predators. Where predator species are not able to accommodate by switching to other prey species, population-level changes will follow. The Southern Ocean, though oceanographically interconnected, is not a single ecosystem and different areas are dominated by different food webs. Where species occupy different positions in

  13. Short-term effects of avian predation variation on population size and local survival of the multimammate rat, Mastomys natalensis (Rodentia, Muridae)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gulck, T. van; Stocks, R.; Verhagen, Ron

    1998-01-01

    The influence of avian predation on population size and local survival of Mastomys natalensis rats in Tanzania was studied in a capture-recapture study over a six month period on experimental fields with decreased, controlled and increased predation pressure. Bird observations indicated that the ......The influence of avian predation on population size and local survival of Mastomys natalensis rats in Tanzania was studied in a capture-recapture study over a six month period on experimental fields with decreased, controlled and increased predation pressure. Bird observations indicated...... that the placement of perches increased local hunting activity of at least the Black Shouldered Kite but there were no obvious effects on rodent population size or survival. In a single field where avian predation was prevented by covering the field with a net, an increase in survival was observed. The opposite...

  14. Effects of predation and food on the population dynamics of the raptorial cladoceran Leptodora kindtii

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vijverberg, J.; Koelewijn, H.P.; Densen, van W.L.T.

    2005-01-01

    We assessed the trophic status of Leptodora kindtii in the food web of a shallow, eutrophic lake in which 0+ age group fish were the main predators. The mean biomass of 0+ fish during three successive years varied from 0.39 g dry wt m(-2) in the first year to 0.05 g dry wt m(-2)in the second year to

  15. Effects of predation and food on the population dynamics of the raptorial cladoceran Leptodora kindtii

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vijverberg, J.; Koelewijn, H.P.; Van Densen, W.L.T.

    2005-01-01

    We assessed the trophic status of Leptodora kindtii in the food web of a shallow, eutrophic lake in which 0+ age group fish were the main predators. The mean biomass of 0+ fish during three successive years varied from 0.39 g dry wt m-2 in the first year to 0.05 g dry wt m-22 in the second year to

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. Long-term patterns in European brown hare population dynamics in Denmark: effects of agriculture, predation and climate

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    Asferg Tommy

    2004-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In Denmark and many other European countries, harvest records suggest a marked decline in European brown hare numbers, a decline often attributed to the agricultural practice. In the present study, we analyse the association between agricultural land-use, predator abundance and winter severity on the number of European brown hares harvested in Denmark in the years 1955 through 2000. Results Winter cereals had a significant negative association with European brown hare numbers. In contrast to this, root crop area was positively related to their numbers. Remaining crop categories were not significantly associated with the European brown hare numbers, though grass out of rotation tended to be positively related. The areas of root crop production and of grass out of rotation have been reduced by approximately 80% and 50%, respectively, while the area of winter cereals has increased markedly (>70%. However, European brown hare numbers were primarily negatively associated with the number of red fox. Finally, we also found a positive association between mild winters and European brown hare numbers. Conclusion The decline of Danish European brown hare populations can mainly be attributed to predation by red fox, but the development in agricultural land-use during the last 45 years have also affected the European brown hare numbers negatively. Additionally, though mild winters were beneficial to European brown hares, the increasing frequency of mild winters during the study period was insufficient to reverse the negative population trend.

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. Effect of intercropping of maize, bean, cabbage and toxicants on the population levels of some insect pests and associated predators in sugar beet plantations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S.K.M. El-Fakharany

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Experiments were carried out at El-Riad district, Kafr El-Sheikh Governorate in two successive growing seasons (2009/10 and 2010/11 to study the effect of intercropping of faba bean, maize and cabbage with sugar beet on the population density of Empoasca spp. (nymphs and adults, Aphis spp. (nymphs and adults, Bemisia tabaci (adults, Pegomyia mixta (eggs and larvae, Cassida vittata (larvae, pupae and adults and predators in sugar beet plantations compared with the non-intercropped plants and the resulting yield. The toxicity of certain compounds: fenitrothion, super misrona, sour orange oil, acidless orange oil, and Bermectine in reducing the population density of P. mixta and C. vittata larvae infesting sugar beet was evaluated. The rate of infestation was higher in the sole sugar beet plants than in those intercropped with faba bean, maize and cabbage plants which caused reduction of sucking pests and P. mixta eggs in the two seasons. The intercropping of faba bean plants led to higher infestation rate of P. mixta larvae in the two seasons and C. vittata (larvae, pupae and adults in the first season. The intercropping with maize led to a higher population density of Chrysoperla carnea, Paederus alfierii and Scymnus spp. in the two seasons. Low population density of true spiders was observed in sole sugar beet (control when compared with faba bean, maize and cabbage plants intercropped in the two seasons. Concerning the obtained root yield, the intercropping with maize and cabbage plants reduced the resultant yield of sugar beet roots in the two seasons. Bermectine and fenitrothion were the most effective toxicants followed by super misrona and then, sour orange that induced the lowest reduction in P. mixta larvae. Also, fenitrothion and Bermectine were the most potent compounds in reducing the population density of C. vittata larvae followed by super misrona and then, plant oil extracts. Concerning the side effects of these compounds on

  4. Seasonal shift in the effects of predators on juvenile Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) energetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darren M. Ward; Keith H. Nislow; Carol L. Folt; James Grant

    2011-01-01

    Predator effects on prey populations are determined by the number of prey consumed and effects on the traits of surviving prey. Yet the effects of predators on prey traits are rarely evaluated in field studies. We measured the effects of predators on energetic traits (consumption and growth rates) of juvenile Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) in a...

  5. 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...

  6. 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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barbara A Han

    2011-02-01

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

  8. 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.

  9. Effects of Cougar Predation and Nutrition on Mule Deer Population Declines in the Intermountain Province of the Columbia Basin, 2001-2002 Annual Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wielgus, Robert B.; Shipley, Lisa

    2002-07-01

    Construction of the Grand Coulee and Chief Joseph dams has resulted in inundation and loss of 29,125 total habitat units for mule deer and irrigation agriculture in many parts the Intermountain Province (IM) of the Columbia Basin. Mule deer in the Shrub-Steppe are ranked high priority target species for mitigation and management and are declining in most portions of the subbasins of the IM. Reasons for the decline are unknown but believed to be related to habitat changes resulting from dams and irrigation agriculture. White-tailed deer are not ranked as target species and are believed to be increasing throughout the basin because of habitat changes brought about by the dams and irrigation agriculture. Recent research (1997-2000) in the NE IM and adjacent Canadian portions of the Columbia Basin (conducted by this author and funded by the Columbia Basin Fish & Wildlife Compensation Program B.C.), suggest that the increasing white-tailed deer populations (because of dams and irrigation agriculture) are resulting in increased predation by cougars on mule deer (apparent competition or alternate prey hypothesis). The apparent competition hypothesis predicts that as alternate prey (white-tailed deer) densities increase, so do densities of predators, resulting in increased incidental predation on sympatric native prey (mule deer). Apparent competition can result in population declines and even extirpation of native prey in some cases. Such a phenomenon may account for declines of mule deer in the IM and throughout arid and semi-arid West where irrigation agriculture is practiced. We will test the apparent competition hypothesis by conducting a controlled, replicated ''press'' experiment in at least 2 treatment and 2 control areas of the IM subbasins by reducing densities of white-tailed deer and observing any changes in cougar predation on mule deer. Deer densities will be monitored by WADFW personnel using annual aerial surveys and/or other trend

  10. Effects of Cougar Predation and Nutrition on Mule Deer Population Declines in the IM Province of the Columbia Basin, Annual Report 2002-2003.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wielgus, Robert; Shipley, Lisa; Myers, Woodrow

    2003-09-01

    Construction of the Grand Coulee and Chief Joseph dams has resulted in inundation and loss of 29,125 total habitat units for mule deer and irrigation agriculture in many parts the Intermountain Province (IM) of the Columbia Basin. Mule deer in the Shrub-Steppe are ranked high priority target species for mitigation and management and are declining in most portions of the sub basins of the IM. Reasons for the decline are unknown but believed to be related to habitat changes resulting from dams and irrigation agriculture. White-tailed deer are believed to be increasing throughout the basin because of habitat changes brought about by the dams and irrigation agriculture. Recent research (1997-2000) in the NE IM and adjacent Canadian portions of the Columbia Basin (conducted by this author and funded by the Columbia Basin Fish & Wildlife Compensation Program B.C.), suggest that the increasing white-tailed deer populations (because of dams and irrigation agriculture) are resulting in increased predation by cougars on mule deer (apparent competition or alternate prey hypothesis). The apparent competition hypothesis predicts that as alternate prey (white-tailed deer) densities increase, so do densities of predators, resulting in increased incidental predation on sympatric native prey (mule deer). Apparent competition can result in population declines and even extirpation of native prey in some cases. Such a phenomenon may account for declines of mule deer in the IM and throughout arid and semi-arid West where irrigation agriculture is practiced. We will test the apparent competition hypothesis by conducting a controlled, replicated 'press' experiment in at least 2 treatment and 2 control areas of the IM sub basins by reducing densities of white-tailed deer and observing any changes in cougar predation on mule deer. Deer densities will be monitored by WADFW personnel using annual aerial surveys and/or other trend indices. Predation rates and population growth rates

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. Spatio-temporal dynamics of a fish predator: Density-dependent and hydrographic effects on Baltic Sea cod population.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valerio Bartolino

    Full Text Available Understanding the mechanisms of spatial population dynamics is crucial for the successful management of exploited species and ecosystems. However, the underlying mechanisms of spatial distribution are generally complex due to the concurrent forcing of both density-dependent species interactions and density-independent environmental factors. Despite the high economic value and central ecological importance of cod in the Baltic Sea, the drivers of its spatio-temporal population dynamics have not been analytically investigated so far. In this paper, we used an extensive trawl survey dataset in combination with environmental data to investigate the spatial dynamics of the distribution of the Eastern Baltic cod during the past three decades using Generalized Additive Models. The results showed that adult cod distribution was mainly affected by cod population size, and to a minor degree by small-scale hydrological factors and the extent of suitable reproductive areas. As population size decreases, the cod population concentrates to the southern part of the Baltic Sea, where the preferred more marine environment conditions are encountered. Using the fitted models, we predicted the Baltic cod distribution back to the 1970s and a temporal index of cod spatial occupation was developed. Our study will contribute to the management and conservation of this important resource and of the ecosystem where it occurs, by showing the forces shaping its spatial distribution and therefore the potential response of the population to future exploitation and environmental changes.

  14. Ontogenetic specialism in predators with multiple niche shifts prevents predator population recovery and establishment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Leeuwen, A.; Huss, M.; Gårdmark, A.; de Roos, A.M.

    2014-01-01

    The effects of ontogenetic niche shifts on community structure and dynamics are underexplored, despite the occurrence of such shifts in the majority of animal species. We studied the form of niche shifts in a predator that exhibits multiple ontogenetic niche shifts, and analyzed how this life

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renato Colucci

    2013-01-01

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

  16. Quantifying the impact of woodpecker predation on population dynamics of the emerald ash borer (Agrilus planipennis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David E Jennings

    Full Text Available The emerald ash borer (EAB, Agrilus planipennis, is an invasive beetle that has killed millions of ash trees (Fraxinus spp. since it was accidentally introduced to North America in the 1990s. Understanding how predators such as woodpeckers (Picidae affect the population dynamics of EAB should enable us to more effectively manage the spread of this beetle, and toward this end we combined two experimental approaches to elucidate the relative importance of woodpecker predation on EAB populations. First, we examined wild populations of EAB in ash trees in New York, with each tree having a section screened to exclude woodpeckers. Second, we established experimental cohorts of EAB in ash trees in Maryland, and the cohorts on half of these trees were caged to exclude woodpeckers. The following spring these trees were debarked and the fates of the EAB larvae were determined. We found that trees from which woodpeckers were excluded consistently had significantly lower levels of predation, and that woodpecker predation comprised a greater source of mortality at sites with a more established wild infestation of EAB. Additionally, there was a considerable difference between New York and Maryland in the effect that woodpecker predation had on EAB population growth, suggesting that predation alone may not be a substantial factor in controlling EAB. In our experimental cohorts we also observed that trees from which woodpeckers were excluded had a significantly higher level of parasitism. The lower level of parasitism on EAB larvae found when exposed to woodpeckers has implications for EAB biological control, suggesting that it might be prudent to exclude woodpeckers from trees when attempting to establish parasitoid populations. Future studies may include utilizing EAB larval cohorts with a range of densities to explore the functional response of woodpeckers.

  17. Quantifying the impact of woodpecker predation on population dynamics of the emerald ash borer (Agrilus planipennis).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jennings, David E; Gould, Juli R; Vandenberg, John D; Duan, Jian J; Shrewsbury, Paula M

    2013-01-01

    The emerald ash borer (EAB), Agrilus planipennis, is an invasive beetle that has killed millions of ash trees (Fraxinus spp.) since it was accidentally introduced to North America in the 1990s. Understanding how predators such as woodpeckers (Picidae) affect the population dynamics of EAB should enable us to more effectively manage the spread of this beetle, and toward this end we combined two experimental approaches to elucidate the relative importance of woodpecker predation on EAB populations. First, we examined wild populations of EAB in ash trees in New York, with each tree having a section screened to exclude woodpeckers. Second, we established experimental cohorts of EAB in ash trees in Maryland, and the cohorts on half of these trees were caged to exclude woodpeckers. The following spring these trees were debarked and the fates of the EAB larvae were determined. We found that trees from which woodpeckers were excluded consistently had significantly lower levels of predation, and that woodpecker predation comprised a greater source of mortality at sites with a more established wild infestation of EAB. Additionally, there was a considerable difference between New York and Maryland in the effect that woodpecker predation had on EAB population growth, suggesting that predation alone may not be a substantial factor in controlling EAB. In our experimental cohorts we also observed that trees from which woodpeckers were excluded had a significantly higher level of parasitism. The lower level of parasitism on EAB larvae found when exposed to woodpeckers has implications for EAB biological control, suggesting that it might be prudent to exclude woodpeckers from trees when attempting to establish parasitoid populations. Future studies may include utilizing EAB larval cohorts with a range of densities to explore the functional response of woodpeckers.

  18. 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...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  20. 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.

  1. Effectiveness of two insect growth regulators against Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius) (Homoptera: Aleyrodidae) and Helicoverpa armigera (Hübner) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) and their impact on population densities of arthropod predators in cotton in Pakistan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gogi, Muhammad D; Sarfraz, Rana M; Dosdall, Lloyd M; Arif, Muhammad J; Keddie, Andrew B; Ashfaq, Muhammad

    2006-10-01

    Field efficacies of two insect growth regulators (IGRs) at two recommended application rates, buprofezin at 370 and 555 g AI ha(-1) and lufenuron at 37 and 49 g AI ha(-1), were determined against the sweet potato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius), and the cotton bollworm, Helicoverpa armigera (Hübner), in experimental plots of cotton at the Directorate of Cotton Research, Faisalabad, Pakistan. Adverse effects of the IGRs on populations of associated arthropod predators, namely geocorids, chrysopids, coccinellids, formicids and arachnids, were also assessed. Both IGRs significantly reduced populations of B. tabaci at each application rate 24, 48 and 72 h after treatment, and higher doses were more effective than lower doses. Buprofezin was not effective against H. armigera at any tested dose for any time of treatment in any spray. Lufenuron applied at 37 and 49 g AI ha(-1) effectively suppressed H. armigera populations, resulting in significant reductions in crop damage. At lower doses, both IGRs appeared safe to predator populations, which did not differ significantly in IGR-treated versus untreated control plots. Population densities of formicids and coccinellids were significantly lower at high concentrations of both IGRs in treatment plots, possibly as a result of reduced prey availability. The potential role of buprofezin and lufenuron for control of B. tabaci and H. armigera in a spray programme and the likelihood of direct toxic effects of IGRs on predatory fauna of cotton are discussed.

  2. Predator-prey-subsidy population dynamics on stepping-stone domains with dispersal delays.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eide, Ragna M; Krause, Andrew L; Fadai, Nabil T; Van Gorder, Robert A

    2018-08-14

    We examine the role of the travel time of a predator along a spatial network on predator-prey population interactions, where the predator is able to partially or fully sustain itself on a resource subsidy. The impact of access to food resources on the stability and behaviour of the predator-prey-subsidy system is investigated, with a primary focus on how incorporating travel time changes the dynamics. The population interactions are modelled by a system of delay differential equations, where travel time is incorporated as discrete delay in the network diffusion term in order to model time taken to migrate between spatial regions. The model is motivated by the Arctic ecosystem, where the Arctic fox consumes both hunted lemming and scavenged seal carcass. The fox travels out on sea ice, in addition to quadrennially migrating over substantial distances. We model the spatial predator-prey-subsidy dynamics through a "stepping-stone" approach. We find that a temporal delay alone does not push species into extinction, but rather may stabilize or destabilize coexistence equilibria. We are able to show that delay can stabilize quasi-periodic or chaotic dynamics, and conclude that the incorporation of dispersal delay has a regularizing effect on dynamics, suggesting that dispersal delay can be proposed as a solution to the paradox of enrichment. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-02-01

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

  4. Noncorrelated effects of seed predation and pollination on the perennial herb Ruellia nudiflora remain spatially consistent

    OpenAIRE

    Abdala-Roberts, Luis; Parra-Tabla, Víctor; Salinas-Peba, Luis; Herrera, Carlos M.

    2009-01-01

    By simultaneously manipulating both seed predator and pollinator effects on the perennial herb Ruellia nudiflora at two sites in Yucatan (Mexico), the present study evaluated (1) whether a correlation (interaction) existed between seed predator and pollinator effects on R. nudiflora seed production and (2) whether such an interaction varied geographically. We used three populations per site, and a total of 20 plants per population (N = 120). Groups of five plants wer...

  5. 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

  6. Predation and physical environment structure the density and population size structure of zebra mussels

    OpenAIRE

    Naddafi, Rahmat; Pettersson, Kurt; Eklöv, Peter

    2010-01-01

    The zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) provides one example of successful invaders in novel environments. However, little attention has been devoted to exploring the factors regulating zebra mussel density and population size structure at the local scale. We tested effects of physicochemical factors and fish predation on the density of zebra mussels at several sites and between years in a natural lake. Water depth and roach (Rutilus rutilus) density were the most important variables affectin...

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. Dynamic complexity of a two-prey one-predator system with impulsive effect

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang Yujuan; Xiu Zhilong; Chen Lansun

    2005-01-01

    In this paper, we investigate the dynamic complexity of a two-prey one-predator system with impulsive perturbation on predator at fixed moments. With the increase of the predation rate for the super competitor, the system displays complicated phenomena including a sequence of direct and inverse cascade of periodic-doubling, chaos, and symmetry breaking bifurcation. Moreover, we discuss the effect of the period of releasing predator on the dynamical behaviors of the unforced continuous system, and find that periodically releasing predator at fixed moments change the properties of the unforced continuous system. We suggest a highly effective method in pest control. The target pest population can be driven to extinction and the non-target pest (or harmless insect) can be permanent by choosing impulsive period, while classical method cannot emulate

  10. Short-term effects of avian predation variation on population size and local survival of the multimammate rat, Mastomys natalensis (Rodentia, Muridae)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gulck, T. van; Stocks, R.; Verhagen, Ron

    1998-01-01

    was not true but this might be due to the small size of the experimental fields. Analysis of weekly collected raptor pellets, over a 15 month period, showed an overrepresentation of M. natalensis as prey and a strong positive correlation between the density of M. natalensis and the avian predation intensity....

  11. Reinforcing effects of non-pathogenic bacteria and predation risk: from physiology to life history.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janssens, Lizanne; Stoks, Robby

    2014-10-01

    The important ecological role of predation risk in shaping populations, communities and ecosystems is becoming increasingly clear. In this context, synergistic effects between predation risk and other natural stressors on prey organisms are gaining attention. Although non-pathogenic bacteria can be widespread in aquatic ecosystems, their role in mediating effects of predation risk has been ignored. We here address the hypothesis that non-pathogenic bacteria may reinforce the negative effects of predation risk in larvae of the damselfly Coenagrion puella. We found synergistic effects for all three life history variables studied: mortality increased, growth reductions were magnified and bacterial load was higher when both non-lethal stressors were combined. The combined exposure to the bacterium and predation risk considerably impaired the two key antipredator mechanisms of the damselfly larvae: they no longer reduced their food intake under predation risk and showed a synergistic reduction in escape swimming speed. The reinforcing negative effects on the fitness-related traits could be explained by the observed synergistic effects on food intake, swimming muscle mass, immune function and oxidative damage. These are likely widespread consequences of energetic constraints and increased metabolic rates associated with the fight-or-flight response. We therefore hypothesize that the here documented synergistic interactions with non-pathogenic bacteria may be widespread. Our results highlight the ignored ecological role of non-pathogenic bacteria in reinforcing the negative effects of predation risk on prey organisms.

  12. Safety in numbers: extinction arising from predator-driven Allee effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregory, Stephen D; Courchamp, Franck

    2010-05-01

    Experimental evidence of extinction via an Allee effect (AE) is a priority as more species become threatened by human activity. Kramer & Drake (2010) begin the International Year of Biodiversity with the important--but double-edged--demonstration that predators can induce an AE in their prey. The good news is that their experiments help bridge the knowledge gap between theoretical and empirical AEs. The bad news is that this predator-driven AE precipitates the prey extinction via a demographic AE. Although their findings will be sensitive to departures from their experimental protocol, this link between predation and population extinction could have important consequences for many prey species.

  13. 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.

  14. Effects of habitat features on size-biased predation on salmon by bears.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andersson, Luke C; Reynolds, John D

    2017-05-01

    Predators can drive trait divergence among populations of prey by imposing differential selection on prey traits. Habitat characteristics can mediate predator selectivity by providing refuge for prey. We quantified the effects of stream characteristics on biases in the sizes of spawning salmon caught by bears (Ursus arctos and U. americanus) on the central coast of British Columbia, Canada by measuring size-biased predation on spawning chum (Oncorhynchus keta) and pink (O. gorbuscha) salmon in 12 streams with varying habitat characteristics. We tested the hypotheses that bears would catch larger than average salmon (size-biased predation) and that this bias toward larger fish would be higher in streams that provide less protection to spawning salmon from predation (e.g., less pools, wood, undercut banks). We then we tested for how such size biases in turn translate into differences among populations in the sizes of the fish. Bears caught larger-than-average salmon as the spawning season progressed and as predicted, this was most pronounced in streams with fewer refugia for the fish (i.e., wood and undercut banks). Salmon were marginally smaller in streams with more pronounced size-biased predation but this predictor was less reliable than physical characteristics of streams, with larger fish in wider, deeper streams. These results support the hypothesis that selective forces imposed by predators can be mediated by habitat characteristics, with potential consequences for physical traits of prey.

  15. Central-place foraging and ecological effects of an invasive predator across multiple habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benkwitt, Cassandra E

    2016-10-01

    Cross-habitat foraging movements of predators can have widespread implications for predator and prey populations, community structure, nutrient transfer, and ecosystem function. Although central-place foraging models and other aspects of optimal foraging theory focus on individual predator behavior, they also provide useful frameworks for understanding the effects of predators on prey populations across multiple habitats. However, few studies have examined both the foraging behavior and ecological effects of nonnative predators across multiple habitats, and none has tested whether nonnative predators deplete prey in a manner predicted by these foraging models. I conducted behavioral observations of invasive lionfish (Pterois volitans) to determine whether they exhibit foraging movements similar to other central-place consumers. Then, I used a manipulative field experiment to test whether their effects on prey populations are consistent with three qualitative predictions from optimal foraging models. Specifically, I predicted that the effects of invasive lionfish on native prey will (1) occur at central sites first and then in surrounding habitats, (2) decrease with increasing distance away from their shelter site, and (3) extend to greater distances when prey patches are spaced closer together. Approximately 40% of lionfish exhibited short-term crepuscular foraging movements into surrounding habitats from the coral patch reefs where they shelter during daylight hours. Over the course of 7 weeks, lionfish depleted native fish populations on the coral patch reefs where they reside, and subsequently on small structures in the surrounding habitat. However, their effects did not decrease with increasing distance from the central shelter site and the influence of patch spacing was opposite the prediction. Instead, lionfish always had the greatest effects in areas with the highest prey densities. The differences between the predicted and observed effects of lionfish

  16. Partitioning the sources of demographic variation reveals density-dependent nest predation in an island bird population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sofaer, Helen R; Sillett, T Scott; Langin, Kathryn M; Morrison, Scott A; Ghalambor, Cameron K

    2014-07-01

    Ecological factors often shape demography through multiple mechanisms, making it difficult to identify the sources of demographic variation. In particular, conspecific density can influence both the strength of competition and the predation rate, but density-dependent competition has received more attention, particularly among terrestrial vertebrates and in island populations. A better understanding of how both competition and predation contribute to density-dependent variation in fecundity can be gained by partitioning the effects of density on offspring number from its effects on reproductive failure, while also evaluating how biotic and abiotic factors jointly shape demography. We examined the effects of population density and precipitation on fecundity, nest survival, and adult survival in an insular population of orange-crowned warblers (Oreothlypis celata) that breeds at high densities and exhibits a suite of traits suggesting strong intraspecific competition. Breeding density had a negative influence on fecundity, but it acted by increasing the probability of reproductive failure through nest predation, rather than through competition, which was predicted to reduce the number of offspring produced by successful individuals. Our results demonstrate that density-dependent nest predation can underlie the relationship between population density and fecundity even in a high-density, insular population where intraspecific competition should be strong.

  17. Non-consumptive effects of predator presence on copepod reproduction: insights from a mesocosm experiment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Heuschele, Jan; Ceballos, Sara; Borg, Marc Andersen

    2014-01-01

    Reproduction in planktonic animals depends on numerous biotic and abiotic factors. One of them is predation pressure, which can have both direct consumptive effects on population density and sex ratio, and non-consumptive effects, for example on mating and migration behaviour. In copepods, predator...... vulnerability depends on their sex, motility pattern and mating behaviour. Therefore, copepods can be affected at multiple stages during the mating process. We investigated the reproductive dynamics of the estuarine copepod Eurytemora affinis in the presence and absence of its predator the mysid Neomysis...... treatment, but increased towards the end of the experiment. The proportion of fertilized females was similar in both treatments, but constantly fell behind model predictions using a random mating model. Our results highlight the importance of non-consumptive effects of predators on copepod reproduction...

  18. Nonlinearities Lead to Qualitative Differences in Population Dynamics of Predator-Prey Systems

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Ameixa, Olga; Messelink, G. J.; Kindlmann, Pavel

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 8, č. 4 (2013), e62530-e62530 E-ISSN 1932-6203 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) ED1.1.00/02.0073; GA ČR(CZ) GEVOL/11/E036 Institutional support: RVO:67179843 Keywords : nonlinear system * population density * population dynamics * predator * predator prey interaction * qualitative analysis Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 3.534, year: 2013

  19. Effects of irrigation levels on interactions among Lygus hesperus (Hemiptera: Miridae), insecticides, and predators in cotton.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asiimwe, Peter; Naranjo, Steven E; Ellsworth, Peter C

    2014-04-01

    Variation in plant quality and natural enemy abundance plays an important role in insect population dynamics. In manipulative field studies, we evaluated the impact of varying irrigation levels and insecticide type on densities of Lygus hesperus Knight and the arthropod predator community in cotton. Three watering levels were established via irrigations timed according to three levels of percent soil water depletion (SWD): 20, 40, or 60, where 40% SWD is considered standard grower practice, 60% represents a deficit condition likely to impose plant productivity losses, and 20% represents surplus conditions with likely consequences on excessive vegetative plant production. The two key L. hesperus insecticides used were the broad-spectrum insecticide acephate and the selective insecticide flonicamid, along with an untreated check. We hypothesized that densities of L. hesperus and its associated predators would be elevated at higher irrigation levels and that insecticides would differentially impact L. hesperus and predator dynamics depending on their selectivity. L. hesperus were more abundant at the higher irrigation level (20% SWD) but the predator densities were unaffected by irrigation levels. Both L. hesperus and its predators were affected by the selectivity of the insecticide with highest L. hesperus densities and lowest predator abundance where the broad spectrum insecticide (acephate) was used. There were no direct interactions between irrigation level and insecticides, indicating that insecticide effects on L. hesperus and its predators were not influenced by the irrigation levels used here. The implications of these findings on the overall ecology of insect-plant dynamics and yield in cotton are discussed.

  20. The effects of poaching and habitat structure on anti-predator behavioral strategies: A guanaco population in a high cold desert as case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cappa, Flavio; Campos, Valeria; Giannoni, Stella; Andino, Natalia

    2017-01-01

    The effects of poaching on wildlife have been widely studied in conservation biology and can be heterogeneous, particularly on ungulates. These effects can be estimated through different methodologies whose use depends on several conditions such as Flight-initiation distance (FID). Our objectives were: 1- to evaluate whether poaching affects the FID and group structure of a guanaco (Lama guanicoe) population in a high cold desert in San Juan (Argentina); 2- to assess whether habitat structure (slope and vegetation cover) influences FID and group structure in this population. The study area included a site with poaching (unprotected area), and a site without poaching (protected area). We recorded 100 groups of guanacos: 70 in the protected and 30 in the unprotected area. FID and group size were greater in the unprotected than in the protected area, whereas proportions of group categories (with offspring, without offspring and solitary) were similar between areas. Besides, in relation to habitat structure, FID increased when vegetation cover decreased. On the other hand, FID and group size were not affected by slope. Our study shows that guanacos respond to poaching pressure as do other ungulate species, and that other factors such as vegetation cover also affect this behavior. Managers should be aware when interpreting FID due to its relation to habitat structure; the guanaco appears to assume greater risk (lower FID) in areas with high vegetation cover.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. Variation in Population Synchrony in a Multi-Species Seabird Community: Response to Changes in Predator Abundance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gail S Robertson

    Full Text Available Ecologically similar sympatric species, subject to typical environmental conditions, may be expected to exhibit synchronous temporal fluctuations in demographic parameters, while populations of dissimilar species might be expected to show less synchrony. Previous studies have tested for synchrony in different populations of single species, and those including data from more than one species have compared fluctuations in only one demographic parameter. We tested for synchrony in inter-annual changes in breeding population abundance and productivity among four tern species on Coquet Island, northeast England. We also examined how manipulation of one independent environmental variable (predator abundance influenced temporal changes in ecologically similar and dissimilar tern species. Changes in breeding abundance and productivity of ecologically similar species (Arctic Sterna paradisaea, Common S. hirundo and Roseate Terns S. dougallii were synchronous with one another over time, but not with a species with different foraging and breeding behaviour (Sandwich Terns Thalasseus sandvicensis. With respect to changes in predator abundance, there was no clear pattern. Roseate Tern abundance was negatively correlated with that of large gulls breeding on the island from 1975 to 2013, while Common Tern abundance was positively correlated with number of large gulls, and no significant correlations were found between large gull and Arctic and Sandwich Tern populations. Large gull abundance was negatively correlated with productivity of Arctic and Common Terns two years later, possibly due to predation risk after fledging, while no correlation with Roseate Tern productivity was found. The varying effect of predator abundance is most likely due to specific differences in the behaviour and ecology of even these closely-related species. Examining synchrony in multi-species assemblages improves our understanding of how whole communities react to long-term changes

  5. 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

  6. Personality differences in two minnow populations that differ in their parasitism and predation risk

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raine eKortet

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Animals are often individually consistent in their behavior, not only over time, but also across different functional contexts. Recent research has focused on phenotypic and evolutionary mechanisms explaining such personality differences through selection. Parasitism and predation induce important mortality and fitness costs, and are thus the main candidates to create and maintain personality differences in the wild. Here, we present data on the behavioral consistency of the Eurasian minnow (Phoxinus phoxinus from two populations that live in different tributaries of the same river, but whose ecological environment differs fundamentally with regard to predation and parasitism. We experimentally demonstrate that minnow in both study populations are consistent in their boldness and activity. However, the two study populations differ notably: in the high predation and parasitism risk population fish show higher mean boldness, but tend to be less active than fish in low predation and parasitism risk population. Parasite (Diplostomum phoxini load was negatively, but not statistically significantly, associated with fish activity level. Our study suggests that parasitism and predation are likely important agents in the ecology and evolution of animal personalities.

  7. Population Ecology of Caribou Populations without Predators: Southampton and Coats Island Herds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Pierre Quellet

    1996-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper is a review of the ecology of two caribou populations inhabiting predator-free northern islands, Coats and Southampton Island. Findings are analyzed in light of the hypothesis that in absence of prédation or high human harvest, food competition results in delayed puberty, reduced calf production, increased winter starvation of caribou and regulates populations at high densities (>2 km-2. Caribou were hunted to extinction on Southampton Island (Northwest Territories, Canada by mid-century. In 1967, 48 caribou were captured on neighbouring Coats Island and released on Southampton Island. Southampton Island is characterized by a high per capita winter food availability in summer and in winter. The population on Southampton Island has been increasing at a rapid rate of growth since re-introduction (Lamba=1.27. Fast population growth was possible because females invested early in reproduction and over winter survival rate was high. The population on Coats Island is also characterized by high per capita food availability in summer but low food availability in winter. The population size has undergone some marked fluctuations, abrupt declines followed by relatively rapid recovery and, contrary to predictions, densities were always less than 1 km-2. Low population densities on Coats Island result primarily from low food availability. This review suggests that in the absence of prédation or high human harvest competition for food regulates caribou population abundance. However, caribou numbers can fluctuate markedly among years because inter-annual variation of weather conditions affects forage accessibility in winter. This review also emphasizes the importance of distinguishing between factors that determine absolute population density and variation in density among years (in our case probably plant production and winter weather conditions which influence forage accessibility from the regulatory factors, processes that stop population

  8. Changes of population trends and mortality patterns in response to the reintroduction of large predators: The case study of African ungulates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grange, Sophie; Owen-Smith, Norman; Gaillard, Jean-Michel; Druce, Dave J.; Moleón, Marcos; Mgobozi, Mandisa

    2012-07-01

    Large predators have been reintroduced to an increasing number of protected areas in South Africa. However, the conditions allowing both prey and predator populations to be sustained in enclosed areas are still unclear as there is a lack of understanding of the consequences of such reintroductions for ungulate population dynamics. Variation in lion numbers, two decades after their first release, offered a special opportunity to test the effects of predation pressure on the population dynamics of seven ungulate species in the 960 km2 Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park (HiP), South Africa. We used two different approaches to examine predator-prey relationships: the population response of ungulates to predation pressure after accounting for possible confounding factors, and the pattern of ungulate adult mortality observed from carcass records. Rainfall patterns affected observed mortalities of several ungulate species in HiP. Although lion predation accounted for most ungulate mortality, it still had no detectable influence on ungulate population trends and mortality patterns, with one possible exception. This evidence suggests that the lion population had not yet attained the maximum abundance potentially supported by their ungulate prey; but following recent increases in lion numbers it will probably occur soon. It remains uncertain whether a quasi-stable balance will be reached between prey and predator populations, or whether favoured prey species will be depressed towards levels potentially generating oscillatory dynamics in this complex large mammal assemblage. We specifically recommend a continuous monitoring of predator and prey populations in HiP since lions are likely to show more impacts on their prey species in the next years.

  9. Managing individual nests promotes population recovery of a top predator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruz, Jennyffer; Windels, Steve K.; Thogmartin, Wayne E.; Crimmins, Shawn M.; Grim, Leland; Zuckerberg, Benjamin

    2018-01-01

    Threatened species are managed using diverse conservation tactics implemented at multiple scales ranging from protecting individuals, to populations, to entire species. Individual protection strives to promote recovery at the population‐ or species‐level, although this is seldom evaluated.After decades of widespread declines, bald eagles, Haliaeetus leucocephalus, are recovering throughout their range due to legal protection and pesticide bans. However, like other raptors, their recovery remains threatened by human activities. Bald eagle nests are commonly managed using buffer zones to minimize human disturbance, but the benefits of this practice remain unquantified.Within Voyageurs National Park (VNP), Minnesota, USA, managers have monitored bald eagle populations for over 40 years, and since 1991, have protected at‐risk nests from human disturbance using buffer zones (200 and 400 m radius). We aimed to (1) quantify the recovery of bald eagles in VNP (1973–2016), and (2) provide a first‐ever evaluation of the individual‐ and population‐level effects of managing individual nests. To do so, we developed Bayesian Integrated Population Models combining observations of nest occupancy and reproductive output (metrics commonly collected for raptors) to estimate nest‐level probabilities of occupancy, nest success, and high productivity (producing ≥2 nestlings), as well as population‐level estimates of abundance and growth.The breeding population of bald eagles at VNP increased steadily from management significantly improved occupancy and success. At the population‐level, management led to 8% and 13% increases in nest success and productivity rates, respectively, resulting in a 37% increase in breeding pair abundance.Synthesis and applications. There is a clear need to evaluate how management approaches at multiple scales assist in species recovery. Our study uses an Integrated Population Model to reveal the population‐level benefits of a widely

  10. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-04-01

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

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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...

  15. Predator-induced morphological plasticity across local populations of a freshwater snail.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christer Brönmark

    Full Text Available The expression of anti-predator adaptations may vary on a spatial scale, favouring traits that are advantageous in a given predation regime. Besides, evolution of different developmental strategies depends to a large extent on the grain of the environment and may result in locally canalized adaptations or, alternatively, the evolution of phenotypic plasticity as different predation regimes may vary across habitats. We investigated the potential for predator-driven variability in shell morphology in a freshwater snail, Radix balthica, and whether found differences were a specialized ecotype adaptation or a result of phenotypic plasticity. Shell shape was quantified in snails from geographically separated pond populations with and without molluscivorous fish. Subsequently, in a common garden experiment we investigated reaction norms of snails from populations' with/without fish when exposed to chemical cues from tench (Tinca tinca, a molluscivorous fish. We found that snails from fish-free ponds had a narrow shell with a well developed spire, whereas snails that coexisted with fish had more rotund shells with a low spire, a shell morphology known to increase survival rate from shell-crushing predators. The common garden experiment mirrored the results from the field survey and showed that snails had similar reaction norms in response to chemical predator cues, i.e. the expression of shell shape was independent of population origin. Finally, we found significant differences for the trait means among populations, within each pond category (fish/fish free, suggesting a genetic component in the determination of shell morphology that has evolved independently across ponds.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maarten C Boerlijst

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

  17. Populations of predators and parasitoids of Bemisia tabaci (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) after the application of eight biorational insecticides in vegetable crops.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simmons, Alvin M; Shaaban, Abd-Rabou

    2011-08-01

    The sweetpotato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius) (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae), is an important pest of vegetables and many other crops worldwide. Eight biorational insecticides (based on oil, plant derivatives, insect growth regulator and fungus) were evaluated in the field for their influence on populations of six natural enemies of B. tabaci. Natural populations of two predators [Chrysoperla carnea Stephen (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae) and Orius spp. (Hemiptera: Anthocoridae)] and two genera of parasitoids [Encarsia spp. and Eretmocerus spp. (Hymenoptera: Aphelinidae)] were evaluated in eggplant (Solanum melongena L.). Also, augmented field populations of three predators [C. carnea, Coccinella undecimpunctata L. (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) and Macrolophus caliginosus (Wagner) (Hemiptera: Miridae)] were evaluated in cabbage (Brassica oleracea var. capitata L.), cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) and squash (Cucurbita pepo L.). Regardless of natural enemy or crop, jojoba oil, Biovar and Neemix had the least effect on abundance of the natural enemies in comparison with the other insecticides during a 14 day evaluation period. Conversely, Admiral, KZ oil, Mesrona oil, Mesrona oil + sulfur and natural oil had a high detrimental effect on abundance of the natural enemies. These results demonstrate the differential effects of biorational insecticides for whitefly control on predators and parasitoids in the field. This article is a US Government work and is in the public domain in the USA. Published 2011 by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  18. The effect of cat Felis catus predation on three breeding ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Breeding success of Pterodroma macroptera, Procellaria aequinoctialis and Pachyptila vittata salvini in three cat-free and three control areas were used to evaluate the effects of cat Felis catus predation on the avifauna of Marion Island. Breeding success of all three species was significantly higher in the combined cat-free ...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barry W Alto

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

  20. Effects of predation by sea ducks on clam abundance in soft-bottom intertidal habitats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Tyler; Esler, Daniel N.; Boyd, W. Sean

    2007-01-01

    Recent studies have documented strong, top-down predation effects of sea ducks on mussel populations in rocky intertidal communities. However, the impact of these gregarious predators in soft-bottom communities has been largely unexplored. We evaluated effects of predation by wintering surf scoters Melanitta perspicillata and white-winged scoters M. fusca on clam populations in soft-bottom intertidal habitats of the Strait of Georgia, British Columbia. Specifically, we documented spatial and temporal variation in clam density (clams m–2), scoter diet composition, and the consequences of scoter predation on clam abundance. Of the 3 most numerous clams, Manila clams Venerupis philippinarum and varnish clams Nuttallia obscurata were the primary prey items of both scoter species, while clams of the genus Macoma were rarely consumed by scoters. Between scoter arrival in the fall and departure in the spring, Manila clams decreased in density at most sample sites, while varnish clam densities did not change or declined slightly. Our estimates of numbers of clams consumed by scoters accounted for most of the observed declines in combined abundance of Manila and varnish clams, despite the presence of numerous other vertebrate and invertebrate species known to consume clams. For Macoma spp., we detected an over-winter increase in density, presumably due to growth of clams too small to be retained by our sieve (<5 mm) during fall sampling, in addition to the lack of predation pressure by scoters. These results illustrate the strong predation potential of scoters in soft-bottom intertidal habitats, as well as their potentially important role in shaping community structure.

  1. Predator-driven brain size evolution in natural populations of Trinidadian killifish (Rivulus hartii)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walsh, Matthew R.; Broyles, Whitnee; Beston, Shannon M.; Munch, Stephan B.

    2016-01-01

    Vertebrates exhibit extensive variation in relative brain size. It has long been assumed that this variation is the product of ecologically driven natural selection. Yet, despite more than 100 years of research, the ecological conditions that select for changes in brain size are unclear. Recent laboratory selection experiments showed that selection for larger brains is associated with increased survival in risky environments. Such results lead to the prediction that increased predation should favour increased brain size. Work on natural populations, however, foreshadows the opposite trajectory of evolution; increased predation favours increased boldness, slower learning, and may thereby select for a smaller brain. We tested the influence of predator-induced mortality on brain size evolution by quantifying brain size variation in a Trinidadian killifish, Rivulus hartii, from communities that differ in predation intensity. We observed strong genetic differences in male (but not female) brain size between fish communities; second generation laboratory-reared males from sites with predators exhibited smaller brains than Rivulus from sites in which they are the only fish present. Such trends oppose the results of recent laboratory selection experiments and are not explained by trade-offs with other components of fitness. Our results suggest that increased male brain size is favoured in less risky environments because of the fitness benefits associated with faster rates of learning and problem-solving behaviour. PMID:27412278

  2. Interacting Populations: Hosts and Pathogens, Prey and Predators

    Science.gov (United States)

    2007-06-01

    model. The importance of seasonality has been well documented for other diseases. For childhood diseases like measles and chicken pox , seasonality comes...Spaniards and in soime cases reduced indigenous population to one tenth of its preepidemic size the Indian p)op)ulation of Mexico is thought to have been... Mexico (1993-94), striped dolphins (Stenella coeuleoalba) in the Mediterranean Sea (1990- 92) and commoin dolphins (Delphinus delphis) in the Black Sea

  3. The influence of historical climate changes on Southern Ocean marine predator populations: a comparative analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Younger, Jane L; Emmerson, Louise M; Miller, Karen J

    2016-02-01

    The Southern Ocean ecosystem is undergoing rapid physical and biological changes that are likely to have profound implications for higher-order predators. Here, we compare the long-term, historical responses of Southern Ocean predators to climate change. We examine palaeoecological evidence for changes in the abundance and distribution of seabirds and marine mammals, and place these into context with palaeoclimate records in order to identify key environmental drivers associated with population changes. Our synthesis revealed two key factors underlying Southern Ocean predator population changes; (i) the availability of ice-free ground for breeding and (ii) access to productive foraging grounds. The processes of glaciation and sea ice fluctuation were key; the distributions and abundances of elephant seals, snow petrels, gentoo, chinstrap and Adélie penguins all responded strongly to the emergence of new breeding habitat coincident with deglaciation and reductions in sea ice. Access to productive foraging grounds was another limiting factor, with snow petrels, king and emperor penguins all affected by reduced prey availability in the past. Several species were isolated in glacial refugia and there is evidence that refuge populations were supported by polynyas. While the underlying drivers of population change were similar across most Southern Ocean predators, the individual responses of species to environmental change varied because of species specific factors such as dispersal ability and environmental sensitivity. Such interspecific differences are likely to affect the future climate change responses of Southern Ocean marine predators and should be considered in conservation plans. Comparative palaeoecological studies are a valuable source of long-term data on species' responses to environmental change that can provide important insights into future climate change responses. This synthesis highlights the importance of protecting productive foraging grounds

  4. The effects of prey patchiness, predator aggregation, and mutual interference on the functional response of Phytoseiulus persimilis feeding on Tetranychus urticae (Acari: Phytoseiidae, Tetranychidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nachman, Gösta

    2006-01-01

    The spatial distributions of two-spotted spider mites Tetranychus urticae and their natural enemy, the phytoseiid predator Phytoseiulus persimilis, were studied on six full-grown cucumber plants. Both mite species were very patchily distributed and P. persimilis tended to aggregate on leaves with abundant prey. The effects of non-homogenous distributions and degree of spatial overlap between prey and predators on the per capita predation rate were studied by means of a stage-specific predation model that averages the predation rates over all the local populations inhabiting the individual leaves. The empirical predation rates were compared with predictions assuming random predator search and/or an even distribution of prey. The analysis clearly shows that the ability of the predators to search non-randomly increases their predation rate. On the other hand, the prey may gain if it adopts a more even distribution when its density is low and a more patchy distribution when density increases. Mutual interference between searching predators reduces the predation rate, but the effect is negligible. The stage-specific functional response model was compared with two simpler models without explicit stage structure. Both unstructured models yielded predictions that were quite similar to those of the stage-structured model.

  5. Predicting the effects of ocean acidification on predator-prey interactions: a conceptual framework based on coastal molluscs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kroeker, Kristy J; Sanford, Eric; Jellison, Brittany M; Gaylord, Brian

    2014-06-01

    The influence of environmental change on species interactions will affect population dynamics and community structure in the future, but our current understanding of the outcomes of species interactions in a high-CO2 world is limited. Here, we draw upon emerging experimental research examining the effects of ocean acidification on coastal molluscs to provide hypotheses of the potential impacts of high-CO2 on predator-prey interactions. Coastal molluscs, such as oysters, mussels, and snails, allocate energy among defenses, growth, and reproduction. Ocean acidification increases the energetic costs of physiological processes such as acid-base regulation and calcification. Impacted molluscs can display complex and divergent patterns of energy allocation to defenses and growth that may influence predator-prey interactions; these include changes in shell properties, body size, tissue mass, immune function, or reproductive output. Ocean acidification has also been shown to induce complex changes in chemoreception, behavior, and inducible defenses, including altered cue detection and predator avoidance behaviors. Each of these responses may ultimately alter the susceptibility of coastal molluscs to predation through effects on predator handling time, satiation, and search time. While many of these effects may manifest as increases in per capita predation rates on coastal molluscs, the ultimate outcome of predator-prey interactions will also depend on how ocean acidification affects the specified predators, which also exhibit complex responses to ocean acidification. Changes in predator-prey interactions could have profound and unexplored consequences for the population dynamics of coastal molluscs in a high-CO2 ocean. © 2014 Marine Biological Laboratory.

  6. Genetic variation in flowering phenology and avoidance of seed predation in native populations of Ulex europaeus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atlan, A; Barat, M; Legionnet, A S; Parize, L; Tarayre, M

    2010-02-01

    The genetic variation in flowering phenology may be an important component of a species' capacity to colonize new environments. In native populations of the invasive species Ulex europaeus, flowering phenology has been shown to be bimodal and related to seed predation. The aim of the present study was to determine if this bimodality has a genetic basis, and to investigate whether the polymorphism in flowering phenology is genetically linked to seed predation, pod production and growth patterns. We set up an experiment raising maternal families in a common garden. Based on mixed analyses of variance and correlations among maternal family means, we found genetic differences between the two main flowering types and confirmed that they reduced seed predation in two different ways: escape in time or predator satiation. We suggest that this polymorphism in strategy may facilitate maintain high genetic diversity for flowering phenology and related life-history traits in native populations of this species, hence providing high evolutionary potential for these traits in invaded areas.

  7. Temporal variation in seed predation by insects in a population of Syagrus romanzoffiana (Arecaceae) in Santa Catarina Island, SC, Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    da Silva, F R; Begnini, R M; Lopes, B C; Castellani, T T

    2012-02-01

    Insect seed predation may vary depending on seed production. The present study considers the hypothesis that the rates of seed predation tend to be smaller in years of higher fruit production. Thus, we monitored the production of fruits and predation of seeds of the palm Syagrus romanzoffiana over 2 years in the Atlantic Forest (Parque Municipal da Lagoa do Peri, Florianópolis, SC, Brazil), between July 2006 and June 2008. Plots of 0.25 m(2) were fitted under 20 mother plants and fruits were monthly collected for assessment of abundance and seed predation. There was variation in fruit production between the 2 years and among reproductive plants. Predation rates were high and occurred in the predispersal phase by the Curculionidae Revena rubiginosa Boheman, Anchylorhynchus aegrotus Fahraeus, and Anchylorhynchus variabilis Gyllenhal. Seed predation by these species of Anchylorhynchus is first registered in the present study. In average, about 60% of the seeds monthly produced in the population tend to escape insect predation in year of high or low production, becoming available for recruitment. The predation rate was not related to the amount of fruits produced per reproductive plant. Also, different than expected, there was a positive relation between the rates of seed predation and the total of fruits produced monthly on the plots. Thus, no evidence for the satiation of insect seed predators was found in this study with S. romanzoffiana.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. Variation in fruit size and susceptibility to seed predation among and within populations of the cocklebur, Xanthium strumarium L.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hare, J Daniel

    1980-01-01

    Burr size is the major factor affecting variation in the intensity of predation by two species of insect on the seeds of the cocklebur, Xanthium strumarium. Mean burr size varied among 10 adjacent local populations studied over three years, as did intensity of seed predation. Seed predation was more intense in populations with low mean burr length and declined linearly with increasing burr length under field and experimental conditions. Seed predation thus is a selective factor influencing the evolution of both burr size and correlated protective characteristics such as burr spine length and wall thickness. As in some other plants, morphological rather than chemical features appear to pose the major barrier to attack by host-specific seed predators. The advantage of more highly developed tissues protecting seeds may occur at the expense of total seed production.

  12. Environmental Variation and Cohort Effects in an Antarctic Predator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garrott, Robert A.; Rotella, Jay J.; Siniff, Donald B.; Parkinson, Claire L.; Stauffer, Glenn E.

    2011-01-01

    Understanding the potential influence of environmental variation experienced by animals during early stages of development on their subsequent demographic performance can contribute to our understanding of population processes and aid in predicting impacts of global climate change on ecosystem functioning. Using data from 4,178 tagged female Weddell seal pups born into 20 different cohorts, and 30 years of observations of the tagged seals, we evaluated the hypothesis that environmental conditions experienced by young seals, either indirectly through maternal effects and/or directly during the initial period of juvenile nutritional independence, have long-term effects on individual demographic performance. We documented an approximately 3-fold difference in the proportion of each cohort that returned to the pupping colonies and produced a pup within the first 10 years after birth. We found only weak evidence for a correlation between annual environmental conditions during the juvenile-independence period and cohort recruitment probability. Instead, the data strongly supported an association between cohort recruitment probability and the regional extent of sea ice experienced by the mother during the winter the pup was in utero. We suggest that inter-annual variation in winter sea-ice extent influences the foraging success of pregnant seals by moderating the regional abundance of competing predators that cannot occupy areas of consolidated sea ice, and by directly influencing the abundance of mid-trophic prey species that are sea-ice obligates. We hypothesize that this environmentally-induced variation in maternal nutrition dictates the extent of maternal energetic investment in offspring, resulting in cohort variation in mean size of pups at weaning which, in turn, contributes to an individual?s phenotype and its ultimate fitness. These linkages between sea ice and trophic dynamics, combined with demonstrated and predicted changes in the duration and extent of sea

  13. 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...

  14. 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...

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. Associations Between Egg Capsule Morphology and Predation Among Populations of the Marine Gastropod, Nucella emarginata.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rawlings, T A

    1990-12-01

    Intraspecific variation in the morphology of egg capsules is ideal for assessing the costs and benefits of encapsulation, yet little is known about the extent of such variation among populations of a single species. In the present study, I compared capsule morphology among three populations of the intertidal gastropod, Nucella emarginata. Significant differences were found both in capsule wall thickness and capsule strength. Mean capsule wall thickness varied as much as 25% among populations, with the dry weight of capsular cases differing accordingly. Capsule strength, measured as resistance to puncturing and squeezing forces, also varied among populations, but did not directly reflect differences in capsule wall thickness. Despite extensive variation in capsule morphology within this species, the number and size of eggs contained within capsules of equal volume did not differ significantly among populations. I also compared the type of capsule-eating predators that were present at each site. Shore crabs, Hemigrapsus spp., were abundant at all three sites; however, the predatory isopods Idotea wosnesenskii were only present at sites containing relatively thick-walled capsules. Although Hemigrapsus and Idotea were able to chew through both thick- and thin-walled capsules, laboratory experiments revealed that Idotea preferentially opened thin-walled capsules. These results suggest that variation in capsule morphology among populations of N. emarginata may, at least in part, reflect selection for the protection of embryos against predation.

  18. Diversity and population dynamics of pests and predators in irrigated rice fields with treated and untreated pesticide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rattanapun, W

    2012-01-01

    The monitoring of rice pests and their predators in pesticide untreated and treated rice fields was conducted at the southern of Thailand. Twenty-two species in 15 families and 6 orders of rice pests were sampled from untreated rice field. For treated rice field, 22 species in 14 families and 5 orders of rice pest were collected. Regardless of treatment type, dominant species and individual number of rice pest varied to physiological stage of rice. Lepidopteran pests had highest infestation during the vegetative stage of rice growth, while hemipteran pests composed of hopper species (Hemipetra: Auchenorrhyncha) and heteropteran species (Hemiptera: Heteroptera) were dominant groups during the reproductive stage and grain formation and ripening stage of rice growth. In contrast, dominant species of predator did not change throughout rice growing season. There were 35 species in 25 families and seven orders and 40 species in 29 families and seven orders of predators collected from untreated and treated rice field, respectively. Major predators of both rice fields were Micraspis discolor (Fabricius) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), Tetragnatha sp. (Araneae: Tetragnathidae) and Agriocnemis pygmaea Rambur (Odonata: Agrionidae). The population dynamic of predators were not related with rice pest population in both treatments. However, the fluctuation of population pattern of rice pests in the untreated treatment were more distinctly synchronized with their predators than that of the treated treatment. There were no significant differences in the total number of rice pest and predator between two treatments at vegetative and reproductive stages of rice growth. Untreated rice field had a higher population number of predator and a lower population number of rice pest than that of treated rice field during grain formation and ripening stages. These results indicated the ago-ecosystem balance in rice fields could be produced through minimal pesticide application, in order to allow

  19. Context-dependent interactive effects of non-lethal predation on larvae impact adult longevity and body composition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chandrasegaran, Karthikeyan; Kandregula, Samyuktha Rao; Quader, Suhel; Juliano, Steven A

    2018-01-01

    Predation impacts development, behavior and morphology of prey species thereby shaping their abundances, distribution and community structure. Non-lethal threat of predation, specifically, can have a strong influence on prey lifehistory characteristics. While investigations often focus on the impact of predation threat on prey in isolation, tests of its interactive effects with food availability and resource competition on prey survival and fitness can improve understanding of costs, benefits and trade-offs of anti-predator strategies. This study, involving Aedes aegypti mosquitoes as a model organism, investigates both simple and interactive effects of predation threat during the larval stage on survival, size at and time to maturity, stored teneral reserves of glycogen, protein and lipid in adults, and adult longevity. Our results show that development times of mosquito larvae were increased (by 14.84% in males and by 97.63% in females), and size of eclosing adults decreased (by 62.30% in males and by 58.33% in females) when exposed to lowered nutrition and elevated intraspecific competition, but that predation had no detectable effect on these simple traits. Teneral reserves of glycogen, protein and lipid and adult longevity were positively correlated with adult body size. Non-lethal predation threat had significant interactive effects with nutrition and larval competition on teneral reserves in males and adult longevity in males and females. The sexes responded differently to conditions encountered as larvae, with the larval environment affecting development and adult characteristics more acutely for females than for males. The outcome of this study shows how threat of predation on juveniles can have long-lasting effects on adults that are likely to impact mosquito population dynamics and that may impact disease transmission.

  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. Effects of carbaryl-bran bait on trap catch and seed predation by ground beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fielding, Dennis J; DeFoliart, Linda S; Hagerty, Aaron M

    2013-04-01

    Carbaryl-bran bait is effective against grasshoppers without many impacts on nontarget organisms, but ground beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae) may be susceptible to these baits. Carabids are beneficial in agricultural settings as predators of insect pests and weed seeds. Carabid species and their consumption of weed seeds have not been previously studied in agricultural settings in Alaska. This study examined the effect of grasshopper bran bait on carabid activity-density, as measured by pitfall trap catches, and subsequent predation by invertebrates of seeds of three species of weed. Data were collected in fallow fields in agricultural landscape in the interior of Alaska, near Delta Junction, in 2008 and 2010. Bait applications reduced ground beetle activity-density by over half in each of 2 yr of bait applications. Seed predation was generally low overall (1-10%/wk) and not strongly affected by the bait application, but predation of lambsquarters (Chenopodium album L.) seed was lower on treated plots in 1 yr (340 seeds recovered versus 317 seeds, on treated versus untreated plots, respectively). Predation of dandelion (Taraxacum officinale G. H. Weber ex Wiggers) seeds was correlated with ground beetle activity-density in 1 yr, and predation of dragonhead mint (Dracocephalum parvifolium Nutt.) seed in the other year. We conclude that applications of carbaryl-bran bait for control of grasshoppers will have only a small, temporary effect on weed seed populations in high-latitude agricultural ecosystems.

  3. 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

  4. Effects of seed and seedling predation by small mammals on ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Seed predation reduced seedling recruitment from seeds planted in March 1986 in mature fynbos, but ... Seed predation did not significantly reduce seedling recruitment from seed planted in July, August and ... AJOL African Journals Online.

  5. Allee effect in a discrete-time predator-prey system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Celik, Canan; Duman, Oktay

    2009-01-01

    In this paper, we study the stability of a discrete-time predator-prey system with and without Allee effect. By analyzing both systems, we first obtain local stability conditions of the equilibrium points without the Allee effect and then exhibit the impact of the Allee effect on stability when it is imposed on prey population. We also show the stabilizing effect of Allee effect by numerical simulations and verify that when the prey population is subject to an Allee effect, the trajectory of the solutions approximates to the corresponding equilibrium point much faster. Furthermore, for some fixed parameter values satisfying necessary conditions, we show that the corresponding equilibrium point moves from instability to stability under the Allee effect on prey population.

  6. Effect of ant attendance by Monomorium minimum (Buckley) (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) on predation and parasitism of the soybean aphid Aphis glycines Matsumura (Hemiptera: Aphididae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herbert, John J; Horn, David J

    2008-10-01

    Ant attendance is known to affect the population dynamics of aphids and may increase or decrease aphid populations through stimulation, predation, or protection. In this study, we performed a series of laboratory experiments to examine the effects of ant attendance on populations of the soybean aphid Aphis glycines. Aphid colonies were exposed to the predators Harmonia axyridis (Coccinellidae) and Orius insidiosus (Anthocoridae) and a parasitoid Aphidius colemani (Aphidiidae) in the presence and absence of attending Monomorium minimum (Formicidae). We also tested for direct effects of ant attendance in the absence of natural enemies. Ants attending soybean aphid populations were observed harassing or killing O. insidiosus and H. axyridis. Attendance interfered with both predator species, resulting in reduced predation and an increase in aphid numbers up to 10-fold in the presence of ants. Ants were not observed directly interfering with the parasitoid A. colemani, but the number of parasitized aphids was higher in aphid colonies that were left unattended by ants.

  7. 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.

  8. The effects of temperature on nest predation by mammals, birds, and snakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    W. Andrew Cox; F.R. Thompson III; J.L. Reidy

    2013-01-01

    Understanding how weather influences survival and reproduction is an important component of forecasting how climate change will influence wildlife population viability. Nest predation is the primary source of reproductive failure for passerine birds and can change in response to temperature. However, it is unclear which predator species are responsible for such...

  9. Supplying high-quality alternative prey in the litter increases control of an above-ground plant pest by a generalist predator

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Muñoz-Cárdenas, Karen; Ersin, Firdevs; Pijnakker, Juliette; Houten, van Yvonne; Hoogerbrugge, Hans; Leman, Ada; Pappas, Maria L.; Duarte, Marcus V.A.; Messelink, Gerben J.; Sabelis, Maurice W.; Janssen, Arne

    2017-01-01

    Supplying predators with alternative food can have short-term positive effects on prey densities through predator satiation (functional response) and long-term negative effects through increases of predator populations (numerical response). In biological control, alternative food sources for

  10. Supplying high-quality alternative prey in the litter increases control of an above-ground plant pest by a generalist predator

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Muñoz-Cárdenas, K.; Ersin, F.; Pijnakker, J.; van Houten, Y.; Hoogerbrugge, H.; Leman, A.; Pappas, M.L.; Duarte, M.V.A.; Messelink, G.J.; Sabelis, M.W.; Janssen, A.

    Supplying predators with alternative food can have short-term positive effects on prey densities through predator satiation (functional response) and long-term negative effects through increases of predator populations (numerical response). In biological control, alternative food sources for

  11. The relationship between food intake and predation risk in migratory caribou and implications to caribou and wolf population dynamics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Douglas C. Heard

    1996-01-01

    Full Text Available We examined the hypothesis that spring migration in barren-ground caribou (Rangifer tarandus enhances access to high quality food, reduces predation risks or both. We related our findings to the hypothesis that one of the consequences of migration is that prey populations cannot be regulated by predation because predators are unable to respond numerically to changes in abundance of migratory prey. In the Northwest Territories, migration to calving grounds by pregnant cows reduced the risk of predation on neonates. Wolf (Canis lupus densities on calving grounds averaged only 22% of winter range densities because most wolves denned near tree line. The quality and quantity of food that was available to cows that migrated to calving grounds was lower than for bulls and other caribou that lagged far behind the pregnant cows during spring migration. Fecal nitrogen levels were higher in bulls than in cows in late May and early June but there were no differences in mid or late June. Areas occupied by bulls in late May had a greater biomass of live sedges than on the calving ground in early June. It appears that although food in July is abundant and nutritious, insect harassment prevents efficient feeding. Body fat reserves in both sexes declined to almost zero by mid-July, the lowest level of the year. Insect numbers declined in August and body fat levels increased to the highest level of the year by early September. Because the timing of caribou's return to the hunting ranges of tree line denning wolves was related to caribou density, our data were inconsistent with the suggested consequence of migration. Tree line denning by wolves and density-dependent changes in caribou migration suggests a mechanism for population regulation in caribou and wolves. We suggest that the process is as follows; when caribou numbers increase, some density-dependent factor causes range expansion in August (e.g., competition for food causing caribou to return earlier to

  12. 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

  13. Impact of jaguar Panthera onca(Carnívora: Felidae predation on marine turtle populations in Tortuguero, Caribbean coast of Costa Rica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephanny Arroyo-Arce

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Little is known about the effects of jaguars on the population of marine turtles nesting in Tortuguero National Park, Costa Rica. This study assessed jaguar predation impact on three species of marine turtles (Chelonia mydas, Dermochelys coriáceaand Eretmochelys imbricatathat nest in Tortuguero beach. Jaguar predation data was obtained by using two methodologies, literature review (historical records prior the year 2005 and weekly surveys along the 29 km stretch of beach during the period 2005-2013. Our results indicated that jaguar predation has increased from one marine turtle in 1981 to 198 in 2013. Jaguars consumed annually an average of 120 (SD= 45 and 2 (SD= 3 green turtles and leatherbacks in Tortuguero beach, respectively. Based on our results we concluded that jaguars do not represent a threat to the population of green turtles that nest in Tortuguero beach, and it is not the main cause for population decline for leatherbacks and hawksbills. Future research should focus on continuing to monitor this predator-prey relationship as well as the factors that influence it so the proper management decisions can be taken.

  14. Bayesian inference reveals positive but subtle effects of experimental fishery closures on marine predator demographics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barham, Barbara J.; Barham, Peter J.; Campbell, Kate J.; Crawford, Robert J. M.; Grigg, Jennifer; Horswill, Cat; Morris, Taryn L.; Pichegru, Lorien; Steinfurth, Antje; Weller, Florian; Winker, Henning

    2018-01-01

    Global forage-fish landings are increasing, with potentially grave consequences for marine ecosystems. Predators of forage fish may be influenced by this harvest, but the nature of these effects is contentious. Experimental fishery manipulations offer the best solution to quantify population-level impacts, but are rare. We used Bayesian inference to examine changes in chick survival, body condition and population growth rate of endangered African penguins Spheniscus demersus in response to 8 years of alternating time–area closures around two pairs of colonies. Our results demonstrate that fishing closures improved chick survival and condition, after controlling for changing prey availability. However, this effect was inconsistent across sites and years, highlighting the difficultly of assessing management interventions in marine ecosystems. Nevertheless, modelled increases in population growth rates exceeded 1% at one colony; i.e. the threshold considered biologically meaningful by fisheries management in South Africa. Fishing closures evidently can improve the population trend of a forage-fish-dependent predator—we therefore recommend they continue in South Africa and support their application elsewhere. However, detecting demographic gains for mobile marine predators from small no-take zones requires experimental time frames and scales that will often exceed those desired by decision makers. PMID:29343602

  15. Disentangling the effects of predator hunting mode and habitat domain on the top-down control of insect herbivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodcock, Ben A; Heard, Matthew S

    2011-03-01

    1. Polyphagous predatory invertebrates play a key role in the top-down control of insect herbivores. However, predicting predation risk for herbivores is not a simple function of predator species richness. Predation risk may be reduced or enhanced depending on the functional characteristics predator species. We predict that where predator species spatially overlap this will reduce predation risk for herbivores by allowing negative inter-specific interaction between predators to occur. Where increased predation risk occurs, we also predict that this will have a cascading effect through the food chain reducing plant growth. 2. We used a substitutive replicated block design to identify the effect of similarity and dissimilarity in predator hunting mode (e.g. 'sit and wait', 'sit and pursue', and 'active') and habitat domain (e.g. canopy or ground) on the top-down control of planthoppers in grasslands. Predators included within the mesocosms were randomly selected from a pool of 17 local species. 3. Predation risk was reduced where predators shared the same habitat domain, independent of whether they shared hunting modes. Where predators shared the same habitat domains, there was some evidence that this had a cascading negative effect on the re-growth of grass biomass. Where predator habitat domains did not overlap, there were substitutable effects on predation risk to planthoppers. Predation risk for planthoppers was affected by taxonomic identity of predator species, i.e. whether they were beetles, spiders or true bugs. 4. Our results indicated that in multi-predator systems, the risk of predation is typically reduced. Consideration of functional characteristics of individual species, in particular aspects of habitat domain and hunting mode, are crucial in predicting the effects of multi-predator systems on the top-down control of herbivores. © 2010 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2010 British Ecological Society.

  16. Extinction and permanence in delayed stage-structure predator-prey system with impulsive effects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pang Guoping; Wang Fengyan; Chen Lansun

    2009-01-01

    Based on the classical stage-structured model and Lotka-Volterra predator-prey model, an impulsive delayed differential equation to model the process of periodically releasing natural enemies at fixed times for pest control is proposed and investigated. We show that the conditions for global attractivity of the 'pest-extinction' ('prey-eradication') periodic solution and permanence of the population of the model depend on time delay. We also show that constant maturation time delay and impulsive releasing for the predator can bring great effects on the dynamics of system by numerical analysis. As a result, the pest maturation time delay is considered to establish a procedure to maintain the pests at an acceptably low level in the long term. In this paper, the main feature is that we introduce time delay and pulse into the predator-prey (natural enemy-pest) model with age structure, exhibit a new modelling method which is applied to investigate impulsive delay differential equations, and give some reasonable suggestions for pest management.

  17. Effect of woodland patch size on rodent seed predation in a fragmented landscape

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Loman

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available Predation on large woody plant seeds; chestnuts, acorns and sloe kernels, was studied in deciduous forests of two size classes: small woodlots (<1 ha and large woods (at least 25 ha in southern Sweden. Seeds used for the study were artificially distributed on the forest ground and seed predation measured as seed removal. Predation rate was similar in both types of woods. However, rodent density was higher in small woodlots and a correction for differences in rodent density showed that predation rate per individual rodent was higher in the large woods. This suggests that the small woodlots (including the border zone and their adjacent fields have more rodent food per area unit. A small woodlot cannot be considered a representative sample of a large continuous forest, even if the habitats appear similar. There was a strong effect of rodent density on seed predation rate. This suggests that rodents are major seed predators in this habitat.

  18. 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.

  19. The Effect of Predators on Cholera Biofilms: If it Lyses, We Can Smash It

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalziqi, Arben; Bernardy, Eryn; Thomas, Jacob; Ratcliff, Will; Hammer, Brian; Yunker, Peter

    Many microbes form biofilms--dense clumps of cells and proteins--on surfaces. Biofilms are complex communities that facilitate the study of biological competition (e.g., two types of microbes may compete to form a biofilm in the same location) and interesting physics (e.g., the source of a biofilm's rigidity). Vibrio cholerae can produce biofilms which have a network-like structure--however, cholera can be genetically engineered to kill other cholera with different genotypes, which leaves behind a structureless ``slime'' rather than such a biofilm. Through mechanical creep testing of both predator-prey and non-predator populations, we found that the predator-prey population responds viscously and decreases in height with repeated compression, whereas the non-predator population responds elastically and maintains its original height. The current work suggests that cell lysis after killing disrupts biofilm formation, preventing microbial colonies from forming rigid networks.

  20. Population variance in prey, diets and their macronutrient composition in an endangered marine predator, the Franciscana dolphin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Denuncio, Pablo; Paso Viola, Maria N.; Machovsky-Capuska, Gabriel E.; Raubenheimer, David; Blasina, Gabriela; Machado, Rodrigo; Polizzi, Paula; Gerpe, Marcela; Cappozzo, Humberto L.; Rodriguez, Diego H.

    2017-11-01

    Disentangling the intricacies governing dietary breadth in wild predators is important for understanding their role in structuring ecological communities and provides critical information for the management and conservation of ecologically threatened species. Here we combined dietary analysis, nutritional composition analysis of prey, literature data and nutritional geometry (right-angled mixture triangle models -RMT-) to examine the diet of the most threatened small cetacean in the western South Atlantic Ocean, the Franciscana dolphin (Pontoporia blainvillei). We applied a recently developed extension of niche theory based on the RMT to help understand the dietary strategies of this species. Our results showed that across their range the Franciscanas consumed prey with variable protein-to-lipid energy ratios (LMM, p < 0.001). In an intensive study of one area, FMA IV, we found that dolphins sub-populations, which recent genetic evidence suggest should be differentiated into three management units, have diets with different protein energy and water mass compositions, but similar protein-to-lipid energy ratios. Furthermore, dolphins from the three areas mixed different combinations of prey in their diets to achieve the observed macronutrient ratios. These results suggest that the different habitats that each sub-population occupies (estuarine, north marine area and south marine) might be associated with different prey composition niches, but similar realized nutritional niches. Future priorities are to better comprehend possible geographical and long-term seasonal effects on prey consumption and dietary breadth of the different Franciscana populations to identify potential impacts (environmental and human-related), enhance the current management strategies to protect this endangered marine predator.

  1. 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

  2. Negative effect of gardening damselfish Stegastes planifrons on coral health depend on predator abundance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vermeij, M.J.A.; Debey, H.; Grimsditch, G.; Brown, J.; Obura, D.; DeLeon, R.; Sandin, S.A.

    2015-01-01

    On Bonaire, we studied the effects of predator abundance and habitat availability on the abundance of the threespot damselfish Stegastes planifrons, a species that creates algal gardens at the expense of live coral cover. Across 21 sites, predator biomass ranged from 12 to 193 g m-2 (mean = 55.1; SD

  3. 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

  4. Landscape heterogeneity drives intra-population niche variation and reproduction in an arctic top predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    L'hérault, Vincent; Franke, Alastair; Lecomte, Nicolas; Alogut, Adam; Bêty, Joël

    2013-09-01

    predator. We also show that within-individual and among-individual variation are not mutually exclusive, but can simultaneously arise and structure intra-population niche variation.

  5. 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

  6. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

  8. 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.

  9. Edge, height and visibility effects on nest predation by birds and mammals in the Brazilian cerrado

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dodonov, Pavel; Paneczko, Ingrid Toledo; Telles, Marina

    2017-08-01

    Edge influence is one of the main impacts in fragmented landscapes; yet, most of studies on edge influence have focused on high-contrast edges, and the impacts of low-contrast edges and narrow linear openings are less understood. Edge influence often affects bird nest predation, but these effects are not ubiquitous and may depend on characteristics such as nest height and visibility. We performed an experiment on nest predation in a migratory passerine, Elaenia chiriquensis (Lesser Elaenia; Passeriformes: Tyrannidae), in a savanna vegetation of the Brazilian Cerrado biome in South-Eastern Brazil. We used 89 real E. chiriquensis nests, collected during previous reproductive seasons, with two plasticine eggs in each, and randomly distributed them at two locations (edge - up to 20 m from a firebreak edge and interior - approx. 150-350 m from the edge) and two heights (low - 60-175 cm and high - 190-315 cm above ground). We also measured leaf and branch density around each nest. We performed this study on two 15-days campaigns, checking the nests every 2-3 days and removing those with predation marks. We sorted the predation marks into those made by birds, mammals, or unidentified predators, and used generalized linear models to assess the effects of location, height and leaf density on survival time and predator type. Only four nests had not been predated during the experiment; 55 nests were predated by birds, 7 by mammals, and 23 by unidentified predators. Low nests in the interior tended to have larger survival times whereas high nests at the edge tended to be more predated by birds and less predated by mammals. Thus, even a low-contrast (firebreak) edge may significantly increase nest predation, which is also affected by the nest's height, mainly due to predation by birds. These effects may be due to predator movement along the edge as well as to edge-related changes in vegetation structure. We suggest that higher-contrast edges which may also be used as movement

  10. Predators with multiple ontogenetic niche shifts have limited potential for population growth and top-down control of their prey

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Leeuwen, A.; Huss, M.; Gårdmark, A.; Casini, M.; Vitale, F.; Hjelm, J.; Persson, L.; de Roos, A.M.

    2013-01-01

    Catastrophic collapses of top predators have revealed trophic cascades and community structuring by top-down control. When populations fail to recover after a collapse, this may indicate alternative stable states in the system. Overfishing has caused several of the most compelling cases of these

  11. Effects of seed predators of different body size on seed mortality in Bornean logged forest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hautier, Yann; Saner, Philippe; Philipson, Christopher; Bagchi, Robert; Ong, Robert C; Hector, Andy

    2010-07-19

    The Janzen-Connell hypothesis proposes that seed and seedling enemies play a major role in maintaining high levels of tree diversity in tropical forests. However, human disturbance may alter guilds of seed predators including their body size distribution. These changes have the potential to affect seedling survival in logged forest and may alter forest composition and diversity. We manipulated seed density in plots beneath con- and heterospecific adult trees within a logged forest and excluded vertebrate predators of different body sizes using cages. We show that small and large-bodied predators differed in their effect on con- and heterospecific seedling mortality. In combination small and large-bodied predators dramatically decreased both con- and heterospecific seedling survival. In contrast, when larger-bodied predators were excluded small-bodied predators reduced conspecific seed survival leaving seeds coming from the distant tree of a different species. Our results suggest that seed survival is affected differently by vertebrate predators according to their body size. Therefore, changes in the body size structure of the seed predator community in logged forests may change patterns of seed mortality and potentially affect recruitment and community composition.

  12. Carryover effects of predation risk on postembryonic life-history stages in a freshwater shrimp.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ituarte, Romina Belén; Vázquez, María Guadalupe; González-Sagrario, María de los Ángeles; Spivak, Eduardo Daniel

    2014-04-01

    For organisms with complex life histories it is well known that risk experienced early in life, as embryos or larvae, may have effects throughout the life cycle. Although carryover effects have been well documented in invertebrates with different levels of parental care, there are few examples of predator-induced responses in externally brooded embryos. Here, we studied the effects of nonlethal predation risk throughout the embryonic development of newly spawned eggs carried by female shrimp on the timing of egg hatching, hatchling morphology, larval development and juvenile morphology. We also determined maternal body mass at the end of the embryonic period. Exposure to predation risk cues during embryonic development led to larger larvae which also had longer rostra but reached the juvenile stage sooner, at a smaller size and with shorter rostra. There was no difference in hatching timing, but changes in larval morphology and developmental timing showed that the embryos had perceived waterborne substances indicative of predation risk. In addition to carryover effects on larval and juvenile stages, predation threat provoked a decrease of body mass in mothers exposed to predator cues while brooding. Our results suggest that risk-exposed embryos were able to recognize the same infochemicals as their mothers, manifesting a response in the free-living larval stage. Thus, future studies assessing anti-predator phenotypes should include embryonic development, which seems to determine the morphology and developmental time of subsequent life-history stages according to perceived environmental conditions. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  13. Effect of doses and of refuge on the insecticide selectivity to predators and parasitoids of soybean insect pests

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Corso, Ivan Carlos; Gazzoni, Decio Luiz; Nery, Manoel Eugenio

    1999-01-01

    A field experiment was conducted to evaluate seasonal effect of insecticides on predators and parasitoids of soybean insect pests. A randomized block design was used, with three replications, and the experiment was set up in the experimental station of the EMBRAPA-Centro Nacional de Pesquisa de Soja, located at Londrina, PR, Brazil. Treatments consisted of insecticide application to control the velvet bean caterpillar (1/21/1993) or the stink bug complex (3/4/1993). Insect population was sampled through the shock technique, consisting of an application of a broad spectrum insecticide over the plants to be sampled, being the insects collected on cloths placed on the ground, and transferred to the laboratory to be identified and counted. Statistical analysis revealed no differences on the populations of species of predators, diptera or himenoptera as a group. No effects of pest resurgence or secondary pest outbreaks were also observed. (author)

  14. A functional response model of a predator population foraging in a patchy habitat

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nachman, Gösta

    2006-01-01

    persimis and Tetranychus urticae inhabiting greenhouse cucumbers. 6. The model fits empirical data quite well and much better than if prey and predators were assumed to be evenly distributed among patches, or if the predators were distributed independently of the prey. 7. The analyses show...

  15. Local density regulates migratory songbird reproductive success through effects on double-brooding and nest predation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodworth, Bradley K; Wheelwright, Nathaniel T; Newman, Amy E M; Norris, D Ryan

    2017-08-01

    Knowledge of the density-dependent processes that regulate animal populations is key to understanding, predicting, and conserving populations. In migratory birds, density-dependence is most often studied during the breeding season, yet we still lack a robust understanding of the reproductive traits through which density influences individual reproductive success. We used 27-yr of detailed, individual-level productivity data from an island-breeding population of Savannah sparrows Passerculus sandwichensis to evaluate effects of local and total annual population density on female reproductive success. Local density (number of neighbors within 50 m of a female's nest) had stronger effects on the number of young fledged than did total annual population density. Females nesting in areas of high local density were more likely to suffer nest predation and less likely to initiate and fledge a second clutch, which led to fewer young fledged in a season. Fledging fewer young subsequently decreased the likelihood of a female recruiting offspring into the breeding population in a subsequent year. Collectively, these results provide insight into the scale and reproductive mechanisms mediating density-dependent reproductive success and fitness in songbirds. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  16. Predicting synergistic effects of resources and predators on foraging decisions by juvenile Steller sea lions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frid, Alejandro; Burns, Jennifer; Baker, Gregory G; Thorne, Richard E

    2009-01-01

    Many theoretical and experimental studies suggest that synergistic interactions between resources and predators influence foraging decisions and their fitness consequences. This framework, however, has been ignored almost completely by hypotheses on causes of the population decline of Steller sea lions (SSLs) (Eumetopias jubatus) in western Alaska. By comparing predictions from a dynamic state variable model to empirical data on the behaviour of individuals instrumented with satellite-linked time-at-depth recorders, we develop and find preliminary support for the hypothesis that, during winter in Prince William Sound, juvenile SSLs (a) underutilise walleye pollock, a predictable resource in deep strata, due to predation risk from Pacific sleeper sharks, and (b) underutilise the potential energy bonanza of inshore aggregations of Pacific herring due to risk from either killer whales, larger conspecifics, or both. Further, under conditions of resource scarcity-induced by overfishing, long-term oceanographic cycles, or their combination-trade-offs between mortality risk and energy gain may influence demographic parameters. Accordingly, computer simulations illustrated the theoretical plausibility that a decline of Pacific herring in shallow strata would greatly increase the number of deep foraging dives, thereby increasing exposure to sleeper sharks and mortality rates. These results suggest that hypotheses on the decline of SSLs should consider synergistic effects of predators and resources on behaviour and mortality rates. Empirical support for our model, however, is limited and we outline tasks for empirical research that emerge from these limitations. More generally, in the context of today's conservation crises, our work illustrates that the greater the dearth of system-specific data, the greater the need to apply principles of behavioural ecology toward the understanding and management of large-scale marine systems.

  17. Differential effects of plant species on a mite pest (Tetranychus utricae) and its predator (Phytoseiulus persimilis): implications for biological control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skirvin, D J; de Courcy Williams, M

    1999-06-01

    The influence of plant species on the population dynamics of the spider mite pest, Tetranychus urticae, and its predator, Phytoseiulus persimilis, was examined as a prerequisite to effective biological control on ornamental nursery stock. Experiments have been done to investigate how the development, fecundity and movement of T. urticae, and the movement of P. persimilis were affected by plant species. A novel experimental method, which incorporates plant structure, was used to investigate the functional response of P. persimilis. Development times for T. urticae were consistent with published data and did not differ with plant species in a biologically meaningful way. Plant species was shown to have a major influence on fecundity (P < 0.001) and movement of the pest mite (P < 0.01), but no influence on the movement of the predator. The movement of both pest and predator was shown to be related to the density of the adult pest mites on the plant (P < 0.001). Plant structure affected the functional response, particularly in relation to the ability of the predator to locate prey at low densities. The impact of these findings on the effective use of biological control on ornamental nursery stock is discussed.

  18. Effects of parents and Brown-headed Cowbirds (Molothrus ater) on nest predation risk for a songbird

    Science.gov (United States)

    Latif, Quresh S; Heath, Sacha K; Rotenberry, John T

    2012-01-01

    Nest predation limits avian fitness, so ornithologists study nest predation, but they often only document patterns of predation rates without substantively investigating underlying mechanisms. Parental behavior and predator ecology are two fundamental drivers of predation rates and patterns, but the role of parents is less certain, particularly for songbirds. Previous work reproduced microhabitat-predation patterns experienced by Yellow Warblers (Setophaga petechia) in the Mono Lake basin at experimental nests without parents, suggesting that these patterns were driven by predator ecology rather than predator interactions with parents. In this study, we further explored effects of post-initiation parental behavior (nest defense and attendance) on predation risk by comparing natural versus experimental patterns related to territory density, seasonal timing of nest initiation, and nest age. Rates of parasitism by Brown-headed Cowbirds (Molothrus ater) were high in this system (49% nests parasitized), so we also examined parasitism-predation relationships. Natural nest predation rates (NPR) correlated negatively with breeding territory density and nonlinearly (U-shaped relationship) with nest-initiation timing, but experimental nests recorded no such patterns. After adjusting natural-nest data to control for these differences from experimental nests other than the presence of parents (e.g., defining nest failure similarly and excluding nestling-period data), we obtained similar results. Thus, parents were necessary to produce observed patterns. Lower natural NPR compared with experimental NPR suggested that parents reduced predation rates via nest defense, so this parental behavior or its consequences were likely correlated with density or seasonal timing. In contrast, daily predation rates decreased with nest age for both nest types, indicating this pattern did not involve parents. Parasitized nests suffered higher rates of partial predation but lower rates of

  19. PANTAI PASIR PADI (PADDY SAND BEACH OF BANGKA ISLAND; CRABS (Scopimera sp POPULATION, FEEDING BEHAVIOUR AND THEIR BIRD PREDATOR

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hanifa Marisa

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available An observation about beach crab (Scopimera sp population, their feeding behaviour and predator bird had been done at October 9 th, 2014 in Pantai Pasir Padi, Eastern Bangka Island beach, near Pangkal Pinang town. Ten 1 meter square plots were put at sandy beach and number of Scopimera sp be counted by the number of their hole nest home. Their feeding behaviour observed directly by eye-watching and video making. The threatening of bird predator was noted too.  The investigation find out that the mean of crabs population is 17 individu/m2 .  They come out from home hole for feeding around by sieving wet sand that be taken by front legs, obsorb organic nutrious material by mouth and kick residual sand to behind legs, move it as a small sand ball to right of left back side.  Production of small ball sand were about 15 - 30 balls /per minute. For making the nest hole, bigger sand ball were produced about 7 – 9 ball/minute; ball colour is same with under layer beach sand; quite grey. The crabs run instinctivey fast, when the threat come from their natural enemy, predator bird, Actitis hypoleucos.  Bird searching behaviour look adapted to the fast run of crab. Keywords: Scopimera sp, Actitis hypoleucos, small sand ball, predator, behaviour

  20. 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)

  1. Mechanisms regulating amphipod population density within macroalgal communities with low predator impact

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hartvig Christie

    2004-04-01

    Full Text Available In eight mesocosms (land based basins macroalgae communities with associated fauna were transplanted from the sea and established during two years. Then, different doses of nutrients (N and P were added to the basins throughout the following three years. During the period of nutrient addition, macroinvertebrate grazers showed seasonal fluctuations with densities usually between 500,000 and 1 million individuals per mesocosm during summer and to a level of about 100,000 during winter. The macroinvertebrate grazers mainly consisted of about 10 species of amphipods and isopods, among which the amphipod Gammarus locusta dominated strongly by biomass. Although the number of predators was very low, the grazer populations never reached a density where considerable grazing impact could be found on the macroalgae. No increase in grazer density was found in the basins with improved nutrient conditions. Thus food quality may be insufficient for further population growth, or density dependant regulation mechanisms may have prevented the grazers from flourishing and overgrazing the system. In aquarium experiments we showed that G. locusta could grow and reproduce on Fucus serratus, Ulva lactuca, periphyton and detritus, and that cannibalism by adult G. locusta on juveniles may have great impact on the population growth. The basins were run with a water flow through system. Nets were placed in front of the inflow and outflow tubes to measure immigration and emigration. Only few individuals (and no Gammarus sp. were recorded in the inflowing water, while high numbers of both amphipods and isopods were found in the outflowing water. Emigration reached peak values during night-time, and it was then two to three times as high as during day-time. Emigration of mobile grazers from the basins amounted to 1-2% of the standing stock daily. These mechanisms that regulate grazers do contribute to maintenance of the seaweed dominance and thus the stability of the seaweed

  2. Edge effect on post-dispersal artificial seed predation in the southeastern Amazonia, Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Penido, G; Ribeiro, V; Fortunato, D S

    2015-05-01

    This paper evaluates the post-dispersal artificial seed predation rates in two areas of the southeastern Amazon forest-savanna boundary, central Brazil. We conducted the survey in a disturbance regime controlled research site to verify if exists an edge effect in these rates and if the disturbance (in this case annual fire and no fire) affects seed predation. We placed 800 peanuts seeds in each area at regular distance intervals from the fragment`s edge. Data were analyzed by a likelihood ratio model selection in generalized linear models (GLM). The complete model (with effects from edge distance and site and its interaction) was significative (F3=4.43; p=0.005). Seeds had a larger predation rates in fragment's interior in both areas, but in the controlled area (no disturbance) this effect was less linear. This suggests an edge effect for post-dispersal seed predation, and that disturbances might alter these effects. Even if we exclude the site effect (grouping both areas together) there is still a strong edge effect on seed predation rates (F3=32.679; p>0.001). We did not verify predator's species in this study; however, the presence of several species of ants was extremely common in the seeds. The detection of an edge effect in only a short survey time suggests that there is heterogeneity in predation rates and that this variation might affect plant recruitment in fragmented areas of the Amazon forest. Henceforth, this seed predation should be taken in consideration in reforestation projects, where the main source of plants species is from seed distribution.

  3. Using Pop-II models to predict effects of wolf predation and hunter harvests on elk, mule deer, and moose on the northern range

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mack, John A.; Singer, Francis J.

    1993-01-01

    The effects of establishing a gray wolf (Canis lupus) population in Yellowstone National Park were predicted for three ungulate species—elk (Cervus elaphus), mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus), and moose (Alces alces)—using previously developed POP-II population models. We developed models for 78 and 100 wolves. For each wolf population, we ran scenarios using wolf predation rates of 9, 12, and 15 ungulates/wolf/year. With 78 wolves and the antlerless elk harvest reduced 27%, our modeled elk population estimated were 5-18% smaller than the model estimate without wolves. With 100 wolves and the antlerless elk harvest reduced 27%, our elk population estimated were 11-30% smaller than the population estimates without wolves. Wolf predation effects were greater on the modeled mule deer population than on elk. With 78 wolves and no antlerless deer harvest, we predicted the mule deer population could be 13-44% larger than without wolves. With 100 wolves and no antlerless deer harvest, the mule deer population was 0-36% larger than without wolves. After wolf recovery, our POP-II models suggested moose harvests would have to be reduced at least 50% to maintain moose numbers at the levels predicted when wolves were not present. Mule deer and moose population data are limited, and these wolf predation effects may be overestimated if population sizes or male-female ratios were underestimated in our population models. We recommend additional mule deer and moose population data be obtained.

  4. Evaluating the negative effect of benthic egg predators on bloater recruitment in northern Lake Michigan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bunnell, David B.; Mychek-Londer, Justin G.; Diana, James S.; Stott, Wendylee; Madenjian, Charles P.

    2012-01-01

    As the only extant deepwater cisco in Lake Michigan, bloater is currently at record low levels of abundance.  Several mechanisms to regulate their recruitment have been proposed, including skewed sex ratios, predation on their larvae by adult alewife, and climatic factors during early life history stages, but none has unequivocal support.  In this research, we evaluated an alternative mechanism of egg predation that was supported by an inverse relationship between bloater recruitment and biomass of slimy sculpin, which are known to be effective egg predators.  To that end, we used a combination of field sampling, laboratory experiments, and modeling to estimate the proportion of bloater eggs consumed by sculpins each year between 1973 and 2008.  Monthly field sampling between January through May 2009-2010 (when bloater eggs were incubating) offshore of Frankfort (Michigan), Sturgeon Bay (Wisconsin), Two Rivers (Wisconsin), and Muskegon (Michigan) provided benthivore diets for subsequent laboratory processing.  Identification and enumeration of stomach contents and subsequent genetic analyses of eggs revealed that the mean proportion of bloater eggs in slimy sculpin diets (N = 1016) equaled 0.04.  Bloater eggs also were consumed by deepwater sculpins (N = 699) at a slightly lower mean proportion (0.02), and only one round goby diet among 552 enumerated revealed a bloater egg.  Based on the diet results, we developed daily ration models to estimate consumption for both deepwater and slimy sculpins.  We conducted feeding experiments to estimate gastric evacuation (GEVAC) for water temperatures ranging 2-5 °C, similar to those observed during egg incubation.  GEVAC rates equaled 0.0115/ h for slimy sculpin and 0.0147/h for deepwater sculpin, and did not vary between 2.7 and 5.1 °C for either species or between prey types (Mysis relicta and fish eggs) for slimy sculpin.  Index of fullness [(g prey/g fish weight)100%] was estimated from sculpins sampled in

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takatsu, Kunio; Kishida, Osamu

    2015-07-01

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

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. 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...

  9. Edge effect on post-dispersal artificial seed predation in the southeastern Amazonia, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Penido

    Full Text Available This paper evaluates the post-dispersal artificial seed predation rates in two areas of the southeastern Amazon forest-savanna boundary, central Brazil. We conducted the survey in a disturbance regime controlled research site to verify if exists an edge effect in these rates and if the disturbance (in this case annual fire and no fire affects seed predation. We placed 800 peanuts seeds in each area at regular distance intervals from the fragment`s edge. Data were analyzed by a likelihood ratio model selection in generalized linear models (GLM. The complete model (with effects from edge distance and site and its interaction was significative (F3=4.43; p=0.005. Seeds had a larger predation rates in fragment’s interior in both areas, but in the controlled area (no disturbance this effect was less linear. This suggests an edge effect for post-dispersal seed predation, and that disturbances might alter these effects. Even if we exclude the site effect (grouping both areas together there is still a strong edge effect on seed predation rates (F3=32.679; p>0.001. We did not verify predator’s species in this study; however, the presence of several species of ants was extremely common in the seeds. The detection of an edge effect in only a short survey time suggests that there is heterogeneity in predation rates and that this variation might affect plant recruitment in fragmented areas of the Amazon forest. Henceforth, this seed predation should be taken in consideration in reforestation projects, where the main source of plants species is from seed distribution.

  10. Effects of Predation by Protists on Prokaryotic Community Function, Structure, and Diversity in Anaerobic Granular Sludge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hirakata, Yuga; Oshiki, Mamoru; Kuroda, Kyohei; Hatamoto, Masashi; Kubota, Kengo; Yamaguchi, Takashi; Harada, Hideki; Araki, Nobuo

    2016-01-01

    Predation by protists is top-down pressure that regulates prokaryotic abundance, community function, structure, and diversity in natural and artificial ecosystems. Although the effects of predation by protists have been studied in aerobic ecosystems, they are poorly understood in anoxic environments. We herein studied the influence of predation by Metopus and Caenomorpha ciliates—ciliates frequently found in anoxic ecosystems—on prokaryotic community function, structure, and diversity. Metopus and Caenomorpha ciliates were cocultivated with prokaryotic assemblages (i.e., anaerobic granular sludge) in an up-flow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) reactor for 171 d. Predation by these ciliates increased the methanogenic activities of granular sludge, which constituted 155% of those found in a UASB reactor without the ciliates (i.e., control reactor). Sequencing of 16S rRNA gene amplicons using Illumina MiSeq revealed that the prokaryotic community in the UASB reactor with the ciliates was more diverse than that in the control reactor; 2,885–3,190 and 2,387–2,426 operational taxonomic units (>97% sequence similarities), respectively. The effects of predation by protists in anaerobic engineered systems have mostly been overlooked, and our results show that the influence of predation by protists needs to be examined and considered in the future for a better understanding of prokaryotic community structure and function. PMID:27431197

  11. Effects of Predation by Protists on Prokaryotic Community Function, Structure, and Diversity in Anaerobic Granular Sludge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hirakata, Yuga; Oshiki, Mamoru; Kuroda, Kyohei; Hatamoto, Masashi; Kubota, Kengo; Yamaguchi, Takashi; Harada, Hideki; Araki, Nobuo

    2016-09-29

    Predation by protists is top-down pressure that regulates prokaryotic abundance, community function, structure, and diversity in natural and artificial ecosystems. Although the effects of predation by protists have been studied in aerobic ecosystems, they are poorly understood in anoxic environments. We herein studied the influence of predation by Metopus and Caenomorpha ciliates-ciliates frequently found in anoxic ecosystems-on prokaryotic community function, structure, and diversity. Metopus and Caenomorpha ciliates were cocultivated with prokaryotic assemblages (i.e., anaerobic granular sludge) in an up-flow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) reactor for 171 d. Predation by these ciliates increased the methanogenic activities of granular sludge, which constituted 155% of those found in a UASB reactor without the ciliates (i.e., control reactor). Sequencing of 16S rRNA gene amplicons using Illumina MiSeq revealed that the prokaryotic community in the UASB reactor with the ciliates was more diverse than that in the control reactor; 2,885-3,190 and 2,387-2,426 operational taxonomic units (>97% sequence similarities), respectively. The effects of predation by protists in anaerobic engineered systems have mostly been overlooked, and our results show that the influence of predation by protists needs to be examined and considered in the future for a better understanding of prokaryotic community structure and function.

  12. Predation risk affects growth and reproduction of an invasive snail and its lethal effect depends on prey size

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Jing; Martín, Pablo R.; Zhang, Chunxia

    2017-01-01

    The behavior of invasive species under predation risk has been studied extensively, but their growth and reproductive responses have rarely been investigated. We conducted experiments with juveniles and adults of the invasive freshwater snail Pomacea canaliculata, and we observed changes in growth and reproduction in response to predation risk from a caged predator (Trachemys scripta elegans). P. canaliculata produced eggs earlier in the presence of predators and injured conspecifics compared with the control group (no risk), although the total number of egg masses laid by per female was exceeded by that of the controls after 15 days. Egg hatching success noticeably decreased under predation risk, and the incubation period was significantly prolonged; however, the oviposition height of the snails was not affected. A lethal effect of predation risk was detected in juvenile snails but not in adults. The growth of juvenile P. canaliculata was inhibited under predation risk, probably due to a reduction in food intake. Adult females exhibited a greater reduction in growth under predation risk than males, which likely resulted in part from the high reproductive investment of females in egg laying. These results indicate that P. canaliculata snails under predation risk face a trade-off between predator avoidance and growth and reproduction, where the lethal effect of predation risk is linked to the size of the prey. PMID:29136660

  13. Predation risk affects growth and reproduction of an invasive snail and its lethal effect depends on prey size.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jing Guo

    Full Text Available The behavior of invasive species under predation risk has been studied extensively, but their growth and reproductive responses have rarely been investigated. We conducted experiments with juveniles and adults of the invasive freshwater snail Pomacea canaliculata, and we observed changes in growth and reproduction in response to predation risk from a caged predator (Trachemys scripta elegans. P. canaliculata produced eggs earlier in the presence of predators and injured conspecifics compared with the control group (no risk, although the total number of egg masses laid by per female was exceeded by that of the controls after 15 days. Egg hatching success noticeably decreased under predation risk, and the incubation period was significantly prolonged; however, the oviposition height of the snails was not affected. A lethal effect of predation risk was detected in juvenile snails but not in adults. The growth of juvenile P. canaliculata was inhibited under predation risk, probably due to a reduction in food intake. Adult females exhibited a greater reduction in growth under predation risk than males, which likely resulted in part from the high reproductive investment of females in egg laying. These results indicate that P. canaliculata snails under predation risk face a trade-off between predator avoidance and growth and reproduction, where the lethal effect of predation risk is linked to the size of the prey.

  14. Disease, predation and demography: Assessing the impacts of bovine tuberculosis on African buffalo by monitoring at individual and population levels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cross, P.C.; Heisey, D.M.; Bowers, J.A.; Hay, C.T.; Wolhuter, J.; Buss, P.; Hofmeyr, M.; Michel, A.L.; Bengis, Roy G.; Bird, T.L.F.; du Toit, Johan T.; Getz, W.M.

    2009-01-01

    1. Understanding the effects of disease is critical to determining appropriate management responses, but estimating those effects in wildlife species is challenging. We used bovine tuberculosis (BTB) in the African buffalo Syncerus caffer population of Kruger National Park, South Africa, as a case study to highlight the issues associated with estimating chronic disease effects in a long-lived host. 2. We used known and radiocollared buffalo, aerial census data, and a natural gradient in pathogen prevalence to investigate if: (i) at the individual level, BTB infection reduces reproduction; (ii) BTB infection increases vulnerability to predation; and (iii) at the population level, increased BTB prevalence causes reduced population growth. 3. There was only a marginal reduction in calving success associated with BTB infection, as indexed by the probability of sighting a known adult female with or without a calf (P = 0??065). 4. Since 1991, BTB prevalence increased from 27 to 45% in the southern region and from 4 to 28% in the central region of Kruger National Park. The prevalence in the northern regions was only 1??5% in 1998. Buffalo population growth rates, however, were neither statistically different among regions nor declining over time. 5. Lions Panthera leo did not appear to preferentially kill test-positive buffalo. The best (Akaike's Information Criterion corrected for small sample size) AICc model with BTB as a covariate [exp(??) = 0??49; 95% CI = (0??24-1??02)] suggested that the mortality hazard for positive individuals was no greater than for test-negative individuals. 6. Synthesis and applications. Test accuracy, time-varying disease status, and movement among populations are some of the issues that make the detection of chronic disease impacts challenging. For these reasons, the demographic impacts of bovine tuberculosis in the Kruger National Park remain undetectable despite 6 years of study on known individuals and 40 years of population counts

  15. 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.

  16. Effects of turbidity on predation vulnerability of juvenile humpback chub to rainbow and brown trout

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward, David L.; Morton-Starner, Rylan; Vaage, Benjamin M.

    2016-01-01

    Predation on juvenile native fish by introduced rainbow trout Oncorhynchus mykiss and brown trout Salmo trutta is considered a significant threat to the persistence of endangered humpback chub Gila cypha in the Colorado River in Grand Canyon. Diet studies of rainbow and brown trout in Glen and Grand canyons indicate that these species eat native fish, but impacts are difficult to assess because predation vulnerability is highly variable depending on the physical conditions under which the predation interactions take place. We conducted laboratory experiments to evaluate how short-term predation vulnerability of juvenile humpback chub changes in response to changes in turbidity. In overnight laboratory trials, we exposed hatchery-reared juvenile humpback chub and bonytail Gila elegans (a surrogate for humpback chub) to adult rainbow and brown trout at turbidities ranging from 0 to 1,000 formazin nephlometric units. We found that turbidity as low as 25 formazin nephlometric units significantly reduced predation vulnerability of bonytail to rainbow trout and led to a 36% mean increase in survival (24–60%, 95% CI) compared to trials conducted in clear water. Predation vulnerability of bonytail to brown trout at 25 formazin nephlometric units also decreased with increasing turbidity and resulted in a 25% increase in survival on average (17–32%, 95% CI). Understanding the effects of predation by trout on endangered humpback chub is important when evaluating management options aimed at preservation of native fishes in Grand Canyon National Park. This research suggests that relatively small changes in turbidity may be sufficient to alter predation dynamics of trout on humpback chub in the mainstem Colorado River and that turbidity manipulation may warrant further investigation as a fisheries management tool.

  17. Effect of sublethal levels of ionizing radiation on a predator-prey interaction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chee, P.C.

    1976-01-01

    The predator-prey interaction studied was that between the largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides) and the fathead minnow (Pimephales promelas) in an artificial test environment. Experiments were first conducted to determine the 50% lethal dose at 30 days of the minnow. Three different dose rates were used to test the effect of dose rate on the 50% lethal dose value. After the 50% lethal dose was determined the predator-prey interaction experiment was conducted using 30% of the 50% lethal dose as the highest radiation dose, this dose being considered the upper limit to sublethal radiation levels. A 4 x 4 Latin square design was chosen for the experiment, with four treatment levels (control plus three radiation levels) and four replicates. In each test 10 prey minnow were offered to one predator bass and the number of prey left after 14 days was the parameter of interest. A predator-prey interaction experiment using a single high level of radiation and two types of controls as conducted to ascertain the ability of the test environment to detect changes in the predator-prey interaction. The two types of controls were irradiated prey not exposed to predation and non-irradiated prey exposed to predation. An experiment was also conducted to test the correlation between the physical activity patterns of minnow and different doses of radiation. At a dose rate of 37.8 rad/min the 50% lethal dose at 30 days for minnow was found to be 2650 rad. It was found that dose rate had a strong influence on the 50% lethal dose. In the predator-prey interaction test it was found that the 14-day survival rate of prey was unaffected by sublethal levels of ionizing radiation. No significant correlation was detected between the physical activity patterns of minnow and radiation dose

  18. 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

  19. Novel mobbing strategies of a fish population against a sessile annelid predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lachat, Jose; Haag-Wackernagel, Daniel

    2016-09-12

    When searching for food, foraging fishes expose themselves to hidden predators. The strategies that maximize the survival of foraging fishes are not well understood. Here, we describe a novel type of mobbing behaviour displayed by foraging Scolopsis affinis. The fish direct sharp water jets towards the hidden sessile annelid predator Eunice aphroditois (Bobbit worm). We recognized two different behavioural roles for mobbers (i.e., initiator and subsequent participants). The first individual to exhibit behaviour indicating the discovery of the Bobbit directed, absolutely and per time unit, more water jets than the subsequent individuals that joined the mobbing. We found evidence that the mobbing impacted the behaviour of the Bobbit, e.g., by inducing retraction. S. affinis individuals either mob alone or form mobbing groups. We speculate that this behaviour may provide social benefits for its conspecifics by securing foraging territories for S. affinis. Our results reveal a sophisticated and complex behavioural strategy to protect against a hidden predator.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raid Kamel Naji

    2016-01-01

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

  1. Population growth of Mexican free-tailed bats (Tadarida brasiliensis mexicana predates human agricultural activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cox Murray P

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Human activities, such as agriculture, hunting, and habitat modification, exert a significant effect on native species. Although many species have suffered population declines, increased population fragmentation, or even extinction in connection with these human impacts, others seem to have benefitted from human modification of their habitat. Here we examine whether population growth in an insectivorous bat (Tadarida brasiliensis mexicana can be attributed to the widespread expansion of agriculture in North America following European settlement. Colonies of T. b. mexicana are extremely large (~106 individuals and, in the modern era, major agricultural insect pests form an important component of their food resource. It is thus hypothesized that the growth of these insectivorous bat populations was coupled to the expansion of agricultural land use in North America over the last few centuries. Results We sequenced one haploid and one autosomal locus to determine the rate and time of onset of population growth in T. b. mexicana. Using an approximate Maximum Likelihood method, we have determined that T. b. mexicana populations began to grow ~220 kya from a relatively small ancestral effective population size before reaching the large effective population size observed today. Conclusions Our analyses reject the hypothesis that T. b. mexicana populations grew in connection with the expansion of human agriculture in North America, and instead suggest that this growth commenced long before the arrival of humans. As T. brasiliensis is a subtropical species, we hypothesize that the observed signals of population growth may instead reflect range expansions of ancestral bat populations from southern glacial refugia during the tail end of the Pleistocene.

  2. Predators, Prey and Habitat Structure: Can Key Conservation Areas and Early Signs of Population Collapse Be Detected in Neotropical Forests?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benoit de Thoisy

    Full Text Available Tropical forests with a low human population and absence of large-scale deforestation provide unique opportunities to study successful conservation strategies, which should be based on adequate monitoring tools. This study explored the conservation status of a large predator, the jaguar, considered an indicator of the maintenance of how well ecological processes are maintained. We implemented an original integrative approach, exploring successive ecosystem status proxies, from habitats and responses to threats of predators and their prey, to canopy structure and forest biomass. Niche modeling allowed identification of more suitable habitats, significantly related to canopy height and forest biomass. Capture/recapture methods showed that jaguar density was higher in habitats identified as more suitable by the niche model. Surveys of ungulates, large rodents and birds also showed higher density where jaguars were more abundant. Although jaguar density does not allow early detection of overall vertebrate community collapse, a decrease in the abundance of large terrestrial birds was noted as good first evidence of disturbance. The most promising tool comes from easily acquired LiDAR data and radar images: a decrease in canopy roughness was closely associated with the disturbance of forests and associated decreasing vertebrate biomass. This mixed approach, focusing on an apex predator, ecological modeling and remote-sensing information, not only helps detect early population declines in large mammals, but is also useful to discuss the relevance of large predators as indicators and the efficiency of conservation measures. It can also be easily extrapolated and adapted in a timely manner, since important open-source data are increasingly available and relevant for large-scale and real-time monitoring of biodiversity.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Competition and facilitation between a disease and a predator in a stunted prey population

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boerlijst, M.C.; de Roos, A.M.

    2015-01-01

    The role of diseases and parasites has received relatively little attention in modelling eco- logical dynamics despite mounting evidence of their importance in structuring communities. In contrast to predators, parasites do not necessarily kill their host but instead they may change host life

  8. Bifurcation approach to the predator-prey population models (Version of the computer book)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bazykin, A.D.; Zudin, S.L.

    1993-09-01

    Hierarchically organized family of predator-prey systems is studied. The classification is founded on two interacting principles: the biological and mathematical ones. The different combinations of biological factors included correspond to different bifurcations (up to codimension 3). As theoretical so computing methods are used for analysis, especially concerning non-local bifurcations. (author). 6 refs, figs

  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. 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.

  11. 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...

  12. Linking anti-predator behaviour to prey demography reveals limited risk effects of an actively hunting large carnivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Middleton, Arthur D; Kauffman, Matthew J; McWhirter, Douglas E; Jimenez, Michael D; Cook, Rachel C; Cook, John G; Albeke, Shannon E; Sawyer, Hall; White, P J

    2013-08-01

    Ecological theory predicts that the diffuse risk cues generated by wide-ranging, active predators should induce prey behavioural responses but not major, population- or community-level consequences. We evaluated the non-consumptive effects (NCEs) of an active predator, the grey wolf (Canis lupus), by simultaneously tracking wolves and the behaviour, body fat, and pregnancy of elk (Cervus elaphus), their primary prey in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. When wolves approached within 1 km, elk increased their rates of movement, displacement and vigilance. Even in high-risk areas, however, these encounters occurred only once every 9 days. Ultimately, despite 20-fold variation in the frequency of encounters between wolves and individual elk, the risk of predation was not associated with elk body fat or pregnancy. Our findings suggest that the ecological consequences of actively hunting large carnivores, such as the wolf, are more likely transmitted by consumptive effects on prey survival than NCEs on prey behaviour. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  13. 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

  14. Effect of downed woody debris on small mammal anti-predator behavior.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hinkleman, Travis, M.; Orrock, John, L.; Loeb, Susan, C.

    2011-10-01

    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 givingup densities to quantify the degree to which downed woody debris alters perceived predation risk by small mammals in southeastern pineforests. We placed 14 foraging trays next to large downed woody debris,shrubs, and in open areas for 12 consecutive nights. Moon illumination, a common indicator of predation risk, led to a similar reduction in small mammal foraging in all three microhabitats (open, downed woody debris,and shrub). Small mammals perceived open microhabitats as riskier than shrub microhabitats, with downed woody debris habitats perceived as being of intermediate risk between shrub and open microhabitats. Despite the presumed benefits of the protective cover of downed woody debris, small mammals may perceive downed woody debris as a relatively risky foraging site in southeastern pine forests where the high diversity and abundance of rodent-eating snakes may provide a primary predatory threat.

  15. 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

  16. Effects of Microphallus turgidus (Trematoda: Microphallidae) on the predation, behavior, and swimming stamina of the grass shrimp Palaemonetes pugio.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kunz, Alyssa K; Pung, Oscar J

    2004-06-01

    The effect of the trematode Microphallus turgidus on its second intermediate host, the grass shrimp, Palaemonetes pugio, was tested. To do so, we measured the susceptibility of infected and uninfected shrimp to predation by the mummichog, Fundulus heteroclitus. Shrimp behavior was compared in the presence and absence of a fish predator, and the swimming stamina and backthrust escape responses of infected and uninfected shrimp were measured. Infected shrimp were more likely to be eaten by a predator than uninfected shrimp, had lower swimming stamina, and spent more time swimming and less time motionless in the presence of a predator. There was no difference between backthrust distances traveled in response to a stimulus by either infected or uninfected shrimp. Thus, M. turgidus may increase the predation of P. pugio in the wild, possibly by affecting the swimming stamina and predator avoidance responses of the shrimp.

  17. Effects of gull predation and weather on survival of emperor goose goslings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmutz, Joel A.; Manly, Bryan F.J.; Dau, Christian P.

    2001-01-01

    Numbers of emperor geese (Chen canagica) have remained depressed since the mid-1980s. Despite increases in glaucous gulls (Larus hyperboreus), a primary predator of goslings, little information existed to assess whether recent patterns of gosling survival have been a major factor affecting population dynamics. We used observations of known families of emperor geese to estimate rates of gosling survival during 1993-96 on the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, Alaska. Survival of goslings to 30 days of age varied among years from 0.332 during 1994 to 0.708 during 1995. Survival was lowest during 1993-94, which corresponded with the years of highest frequency of disturbance of goose broods by glaucous gulls. Rainfall during early brood rearing was much higher in 1994 than other years, and this corresponded to low survival among goslings ≤5 days of age. Numbers of juveniles in families during fall staging were negatively related to rainfall during early brood rearing (n = 23 yr). Although there are no data to assess whether gosling survival in emperor geese has declined from some previous level, current survival rates of emperor goose goslings are as high as or higher than those observed in other goose species that are rapidly increasing. A proposed reduction of glaucous gull numbers by managers may not be the most effective means for increasing population growth in emperor geese.

  18. Mercury effects on predator avoidance behavior of a forage fish, golden shiner (Notemigonus crysoleucas)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webber, H.M.; Haines, T.A.

    2003-01-01

    Mercury contamination of fish is widespread in North America and has resulted in the establishment of fish consumption advisories to protect human health, However, the effects of mercury exposure to fish have seldom been investigated. We examined the effects of dietary mercury exposure at environmental levels in a common forage species, golden shiner (Notemigonus crysoleucas). Fish were fed either an unaltered diet (12 ng/g wet wt methylmercury [MeHg] as Hg), a low-Hg diet (455 ng/g Hg), or a high-Hg diet (959 ng/g Hg). After 90 d mean fish whole-body total Hg concentrations were 41, 230, and 518 ng/g wet wt, respectively, which were within the range of concentrations found in this species in northern U.S. lakes. There were no mortalities or differences in growth rate among groups. Groups of fish from each treatment were exposed to a model avian predator and their behavioral response videotaped for analysis. Brain acetylcholinesterase (AChE) activity was determined in fish after behavioral testing. Fish fed the high-Hg diet had significantly greater shoal vertical dispersal following predator exposure, took longer to return to pre-exposure activity level, and had greater shoal area after return to pre-exposure activity than did the other treatments, all of which would increase vulnerability of the fish to predation. There were no differences in brain AChE among treatments. We conclude that mercury exposure at levels currently occurring in northern United States lakes alters fish predator-avoidance behavior in a manner that may increase vulnerability to predation. This finding has significant implications for food chain transfer of Hg and Hg exposure of fish predators.

  19. Oviposition site selection in Aedes albopictus (Diptera: Culicidae): are the effects of predation risk and food level independent?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wasserberg, Gideon; White, L; Bullard, A; King, J; Maxwell, R

    2013-09-01

    For organisms lacking parental care and where larval dispersal is limited, oviposition site selection decisions are critical fitness-enhancing choices. However, studies usually do not consider the interdependence of the two. In this study, we evaluated the effect of food level on the oviposition behavior of Aedes albopictus (Skuse) in the presence or the absence of a nonlethal predator (caged dragonfly nymph). We also attempted to quantify the perceived cost of predation to ovipositioning mosquitoes. Mosquitoes were presented with oviposition cups containing four levels of larval food (fermented leaf infusion) with or without a caged libellulid nymph. By titrating larval food, we estimated the amount of food needed to attract the female mosquito to oviposit in the riskier habitat. As expected, oviposition rate increased with food level and decreased in the presence of a predator. However, the effect of food level did not differ between predator treatments. By calculating the difference in the amount of food for points of equal oviposition rate in the predator-present and predator-absent regression lines, we estimated the cost of predation risk to be 1950 colony-forming-units per milliliter. Our study demonstrated the importance of considering the possible interdependence of predation risk and food abundance for oviposition-site-seeking insects. This study also quantified the perceived cost of predation and found it to be relatively low, a fact with positive implications for biological control.

  20. Contrasting Foraging Patterns: Testing Resource-Concentration and Dilution Effects with Pollinators and Seed Predators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandria Wenninger

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Resource concentration effects occur when high resource density patches attract and support more foragers than low density patches. In contrast, resource dilution effects can occur if high density patches support fewer consumers. In this study, we examined the foraging rates of pollinators and seed predators on two perennial plant species (Rudbeckia triloba and Verbena stricta as functions of resource density. Specifically, we examined whether resource-dense patches (densities of flower and seeds on individual plants resulted in greater visitation and seed removal rates, respectively. We also examined whether foraging rates were context-dependent by conducting the study in two sites that varied in resource densities. For pollinators, we found negative relationships between the density of flowers per plant and visitation rates, suggesting dilution effects. For seed predators, we found positive relationships consistent with concentration effects. Saturation effects and differences in foraging behaviors might explain the opposite relationships; most of the seed predators were ants (recruitment-based foragers, and pollinators were mostly solitary foragers. We also found that foraging rates were site-dependent, possibly due to site-level differences in resource abundance and consumer densities. These results suggest that these two plant species may benefit from producing as many flowers as possible, given high levels of pollination and low seed predation.

  1. Differential population responses of native and alien rodents to an invasive predator, habitat alteration and plant masting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fukasawa, Keita; Miyashita, Tadashi; Hashimoto, Takuma; Tatara, Masaya; Abe, Shintaro

    2013-12-22

    Invasive species and anthropogenic habitat alteration are major drivers of biodiversity loss. When multiple invasive species occupy different trophic levels, removing an invasive predator might cause unexpected outcomes owing to complex interactions among native and non-native prey. Moreover, external factors such as habitat alteration and resource availability can affect such dynamics. We hypothesized that native and non-native prey respond differently to an invasive predator, habitat alteration and bottom-up effects. To test the hypothesis, we used Bayesian state-space modelling to analyse 8-year data on the spatio-temporal patterns of two endemic rat species and the non-native black rat in response to the continual removal of the invasive small Indian mongoose on Amami Island, Japan. Despite low reproductive potentials, the endemic rats recovered better after mongoose removal than did the black rat. The endemic species appeared to be vulnerable to predation by mongooses, whose eradication increased the abundances of the endemic rats, but not of the black rat. Habitat alteration increased the black rat's carrying capacity, but decreased those of the endemic species. We propose that spatio-temporal monitoring data from eradication programmes will clarify the underlying ecological impacts of land-use change and invasive species, and will be useful for future habitat management.

  2. Effect of Egg Size on Predation by White-Footed Mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    R. M. DeGraaf; T. J. Maier

    1996-01-01

    We compared predation by wild-trapped, caged white-footed mice (Peromyscus leucopus) on eggs of Japanese Quail (Coturnix coturnix) and Zebra Finches (Poephila guttata) to test the effect of egg size. Nine male and nine female mice were weighed, acclimated to cages for 24 h, and presented with two wicker nests,...

  3. Effects of carbaryl-bran bait on trap-catch and seed predation by ground beetles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carbaryl-bran bait is effective against grasshoppers without many impacts on non-target organisms, but ground beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae) may be susceptible to these baits. Carabids are beneficial in agricultural settings as predators of insect pests and weed seeds. Carabid species composition a...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-05-30

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

  5. Ontogenetic and evolutionary effects of predation and competition on nine-spined stickleback (Pungitius pungitius) body size.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Välimäki, Kaisa; Herczeg, Gábor

    2012-07-01

    1. Individual- and population-level variation in body size and growth often correlates with many fitness traits. Predation and food availability are expected to affect body size and growth as important agents of both natural selection and phenotypic plasticity. How differences in predation and food availability affect body size/growth during ontogeny in populations adapted to different predation and competition regimes is rarely studied. 2. Nine-spined stickleback (Pungitius pungitius) populations originating from habitats with varying levels of predation and competition are known to be locally adapted to their respective habitats in terms of body size and growth. Here, we studied how different levels of perceived predation risk and competition during ontogeny affect the reaction norms of body size and growth in (i) marine and pond populations adapted to different levels of predation and competition and (ii) different sexes. We reared nine-spined stickleback in a factorial experiment under two levels of perceived predation risk (present/absent) and competition (high/low food supply). 3. We found divergence in the reaction norms at two levels: (i) predation-adapted marine stickleback had stronger reactions to predatory cues than intraspecific competition-adapted pond stickleback, the latter being more sensitive to available food than the marine fish and (ii) females reacting more strongly to the treatments than males. 4. The repeated, habitat-dependent nature of the differences suggests that natural selection is the agent behind the observed patterns. Our results suggest that genetic adaptation to certain environmental factors also involves an increase in the range of expressible phenotypic plasticity. We found support for this phenomenon at two levels: (i) across populations driven by habitat type and (ii) within populations driven by sex. © 2012 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2012 British Ecological Society.

  6. Known Predators of Crown-of-Thorns Starfish (Acanthaster spp. and Their Role in Mitigating, If Not Preventing, Population Outbreaks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zara-Louise Cowan

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Predatory release has long been considered a potential contributor to population outbreaks of crown-of-thorns starfish (CoTS; Acanthaster spp.. This has initiated extensive searches for potentially important predators that can consume large numbers of CoTS at high rates, which are also vulnerable to over-fishing or reef degradation. Herein, we review reported predators of CoTS and assess the potential for these organisms to exert significant mortality, and thereby prevent and/or moderate CoTS outbreaks. In all, 80 species of coral reef organisms (including fishes, and motile and sessile invertebrates are reported to predate on CoTS gametes (three species, larvae (17 species, juveniles (15 species, adults (18 species and/or opportunistically feed on injured (10 species or moribund (42 species individuals within reef habitats. It is clear however, that predation on early life-history stages has been understudied, and there are likely to be many more species of reef fishes and/or sessile invertebrates that readily consume CoTS gametes and/or larvae. Given the number and diversity of coral reef species that consume Acanthaster spp., most of which (e.g., Arothron pufferfishes are not explicitly targeted by reef-based fisheries, links between overfishing and CoTS outbreaks remain equivocal. There is also no single species that appears to have a disproportionate role in regulating CoTS populations. Rather, the collective consumption of CoTS by multiple different species and at different life-history stages is likely to suppress the local abundance of CoTS, and thereby mediate the severity of outbreaks. It is possible therefore, that general degradation of reef ecosystems and corresponding declines in biodiversity and productivity, may contribute to increasing incidence or severity of outbreaks of Acanthaster spp. However, it seems unlikely that predatory release in and of itself could account for initial onset of CoTS outbreaks. In conclusion, reducing

  7. 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

  8. Influences of past climatic changes on historical population structure and demography of a cosmopolitan marine predator, the common dolphin (genus Delphinus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amaral, Ana R; Beheregaray, Luciano B; Bilgmann, Kerstin; Freitas, Luís; Robertson, Kelly M; Sequeira, Marina; Stockin, Karen A; Coelho, M M; Möller, Luciana M

    2012-10-01

    Climatic oscillations during the Pleistocene have greatly influenced the distribution and connectivity of many organisms, leading to extinctions but also generating biodiversity. While the effects of such changes have been extensively studied in the terrestrial environment, studies focusing on the marine realm are still scarce. Here we used sequence data from one mitochondrial and five nuclear loci to assess the potential influence of Pleistocene climatic changes on the phylogeography and demographic history of a cosmopolitan marine predator, the common dolphin (genus Delphinus). Population samples representing the three major morphotypes of Delphinus were obtained from 10 oceanic regions. Our results suggest that short-beaked common dolphins are likely to have originated in the eastern Indo-Pacific Ocean during the Pleistocene and expanded into the Atlantic Ocean through the Indian Ocean. On the other hand, long-beaked common dolphins appear to have evolved more recently and independently in several oceans. Our results also suggest that short-beaked common dolphins had recurrent demographic expansions concomitant with changes in sea surface temperature during the Pleistocene and its associated increases in resource availability, which differed between the North Atlantic and Pacific Ocean basins. By proposing how past environmental changes had an effect on the demography and speciation of a widely distributed marine mammal, we highlight the impacts that climate change may have on the distribution and abundance of marine predators and its ecological consequences for marine ecosystems. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  9. Experimental demonstration of an Allee effect in microbial populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaul, RajReni B; Kramer, Andrew M; Dobbs, Fred C; Drake, John M

    2016-04-01

    Microbial populations can be dispersal limited. However, microorganisms that successfully disperse into physiologically ideal environments are not guaranteed to establish. This observation contradicts the Baas-Becking tenet: 'Everything is everywhere, but the environment selects'. Allee effects, which manifest in the relationship between initial population density and probability of establishment, could explain this observation. Here, we experimentally demonstrate that small populations of Vibrio fischeri are subject to an intrinsic demographic Allee effect. Populations subjected to predation by the bacterivore Cafeteria roenbergensis display both intrinsic and extrinsic demographic Allee effects. The estimated critical threshold required to escape positive density-dependence is around 5, 20 or 90 cells ml(-1)under conditions of high carbon resources, low carbon resources or low carbon resources with predation, respectively. This work builds on the foundations of modern microbial ecology, demonstrating that mechanisms controlling macroorganisms apply to microorganisms, and provides a statistical method to detect Allee effects in data. © 2016 The Author(s).

  10. Effects of Beauveria bassiana on predation and behavior of the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Shengyong; Xing, Zhenlong; Sun, Weinan; Xu, Xuenong; Meng, Ruixia; Lei, Zhongren

    2018-03-01

    Determination of intraguild interactions between entomopathogens and predators is important when attempting to use a combination of these two natural enemy groups for biological control of their shared arthropod pest species. This study assessed the effects of Beauveria bassiana on the predation and associated behavior of the predatory mite, Phytoseiulus persimilis, against Tetranychus urticae. The functional response tests showed that P. persimilis exhibited a Holling type II response on the spider mite, Tetranychus urticae, when treated with either a B. bassiana or Tween-80 suspension. There were no significant differences between the treatments in the number of T. urticae consumed. The laboratory choice test indicated that P. persimilis displayed a significant avoidance response to B. bassiana on bean leaves immediately following spray application. They also spent significantly longer time in self-grooming behavior on leaf disks sprayed with fungal conidia than on discs treated with Tween-80. There were no significant differences in the predation rates on T. urticae eggs between the different treatments. The potted plant investigations indicated that P. persimilis showed significant aversion behavior to the initial fungal spray, but gradually dispersed over the entire bean plants. Observations using scanning electron microscopy revealed that fungal conidia were attached to the body of P. persimilis after mounting the leaf disk treated with B. bassiana, which would account for its varied behavioral responses. Our study suggests that fungal spray did not affect the predation capability of P. persimilis and poses a negligible risk to their behavior. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Dispersal and population structure of a New World predator, the army ant Eciton burchellii

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Berghoff, S M; Kronauer, D J C; Edwards, K J

    2008-01-01

    barriers, which might have severe impacts on population structure and lead to population decline. Using nuclear microsatellite markers and mitochondrial sequences, we investigated genetic differentiation in a fragmented population in the Panama Canal area. While nuclear markers showed little...

  12. 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

  13. Population dynamics of calanoid copepods and the implications of their predation by clupeid fish in the Central Baltic Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Möllmann, C.; Köster, Fritz

    2002-01-01

    . Additionally this study investigated the effect of predation by the major planktivorous fish species herring (Clupea harengus) and sprat (Sprattus sprattus) for the period 1977-1996 in the Gotland Basin (Central Baltic Sea). Examination of consumption by these fish species in relation to copepod production...... by sprat on CV/CVI of both copepod species in spring resulted in higher copepod mortality rates. In consequence, based on these results we suggest that the increase in the sprat stock since the late 1980s contributed to a decline of P. elongatus, and additionally prevented an even more pronounced...

  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. Effects of water temperature and fish size on predation vulnerability of juvenile humpback chub to rainbow trout and brown trout

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward, David L.; Morton-Starner, Rylan

    2015-01-01

    Predation on juvenile native fish by introduced Rainbow Trout and Brown Trout is considered a significant threat to the persistence of endangered Humpback Chub Gila cypha in the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon. Diet studies of Rainbow Trout and Brown Trout in Glen and Grand canyons indicate that these species do eat native fish, but impacts are difficult to assess because predation vulnerability is highly variable, depending on prey size, predator size, and the water temperatures under which the predation interactions take place. We conducted laboratory experiments to evaluate how short-term predation vulnerability of juvenile native fish changes in response to fish size and water temperature using captivity-reared Humpback Chub, Bonytail, and Roundtail Chub. Juvenile chub 45–90 mm total length (TL) were exposed to adult Rainbow and Brown trouts at 10, 15, and 20°C to measure predation vulnerability as a function of water temperature and fish size. A 1°C increase in water temperature decreased short-term predation vulnerability of Humpback Chub to Rainbow Trout by about 5%, although the relationship is not linear. Brown Trout were highly piscivorous in the laboratory at any size > 220 mm TL and at all water temperatures we tested. Understanding the effects of predation by trout on endangered Humpback Chub is critical in evaluating management options aimed at preserving native fishes in Grand Canyon National Park.

  16. A field experiment demonstrating plant life-history evolution and its eco-evolutionary feedback to seed predator populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agrawal, Anurag A; Johnson, Marc T J; Hastings, Amy P; Maron, John L

    2013-05-01

    The extent to which evolutionary change occurs in a predictable manner under field conditions and how evolutionary changes feed back to influence ecological dynamics are fundamental, yet unresolved, questions. To address these issues, we established eight replicate populations of native common evening primrose (Oenothera biennis). Each population was planted with 18 genotypes in identical frequency. By tracking genotype frequencies with microsatellite DNA markers over the subsequent three years (up to three generations, ≈5,000 genotyped plants), we show rapid and consistent evolution of two heritable plant life-history traits (shorter life span and later flowering time). This rapid evolution was only partially the result of differential seed production; genotypic variation in seed germination also contributed to the observed evolutionary response. Since evening primrose genotypes exhibited heritable variation for resistance to insect herbivores, which was related to flowering time, we predicted that evolutionary changes in genotype frequencies would feed back to influence populations of a seed predator moth that specializes on O. biennis. By the conclusion of the experiment, variation in the genotypic composition among our eight replicate field populations was highly predictive of moth abundance. These results demonstrate how rapid evolution in field populations of a native plant can influence ecological interactions.

  17. The Effects of Resource Limitation on a Predator-Prey Model with Control Measures as Nonlinear Pulses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wenjie Qin

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The dynamical behavior of a Holling II predator-prey model with control measures as nonlinear pulses is proposed and analyzed theoretically and numerically to understand how resource limitation affects pest population outbreaks. The threshold conditions for the stability of the pest-free periodic solution are given. Latin hypercube sampling/partial rank correlation coefficients are used to perform sensitivity analysis for the threshold concerning pest extinction to determine the significance of each parameter. Comparing this threshold value with that without resource limitation, our results indicate that it is essential to increase the pesticide’s efficacy against the pest and reduce its effectiveness against the natural enemy, while enhancing the efficiency of the natural enemies. Once the threshold value exceeds a critical level, both pest and its natural enemies populations can oscillate periodically. Further-more, when the pulse period and constant stocking number as a bifurcation parameter, the predator-prey model reveals complex dynamics. In addition, numerical results are presented to illustrate the feasibility of our main results.

  18. Population Dynamics of Macrosiphum rosae (L. on Different Cultivars of Rose (Rosahybrida, Rosaceae and Biodiversity of its Predators in Mashhad

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Keykhosravi

    2016-06-01

    in landscapes of Mashhad and also to determine the diversity and abundance of the rose aphid predators throughout the seasonal growth in the study area. Material and Methods: Research to investigate the resistance of different rose cultivars against rose aphid and the biodiversity of its predators was conducted at the campus of Ferdowsi University of Mashhad from Mid-March of 2013 to late march 2014. Six rose cultivars including Ice berg, Miniature, Josephine bruce, Piccadilly, Fairy & Blessing were sampled weekly in three sampling sites. For sampling, four cut sections (5 centimeters of terminal part of randomly selected shoot of each cultivar in each site were cut and put in a plastic bag and brought to the laboratory for counting the number of different stages of rose aphid as well as the associated predators. For purpose of identification of immature stages of the aphid predators, immature stage was kept until they reach to adult stage in the laboratory. Results and Discussion: A seasonal fluctuation of rose aphid was recorded throughout the season on six rose cultivars (Table 1. Overall, this aphid was more numerous in spring and early fall on all studied cultivars (Figure 1. By approaching the summer, the population of rose aphid on all rose cultivars, except the Fairy and Miniature varieties declined to zero. Analysis of variance showed that differences in mean population of rose aphid among studied cultivars was significant (P

  19. Effects of experimental seaweed deposition on lizard and ant predation in an island food web.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piovia-Scott, Jonah; Spiller, David A; Schoener, Thomas W

    2011-01-28

    The effect of environmental change on ecosystems is mediated by species interactions. Environmental change may remove or add species and shift life-history events, altering which species interact at a given time. However, environmental change may also reconfigure multispecies interactions when both species composition and phenology remain intact. In a Caribbean island system, a major manifestation of environmental change is seaweed deposition, which has been linked to eutrophication, overfishing, and hurricanes. Here, we show in a whole-island field experiment that without seaweed two predators--lizards and ants--had a substantially greater-than-additive effect on herbivory. When seaweed was added to mimic deposition by hurricanes, no interactive predator effect occurred. Thus environmental change can substantially restructure food-web interactions, complicating efforts to predict anthropogenic changes in ecosystem processes.

  20. 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

  1. Neurological effects on startle response and escape from predation by medaka exposed to organic chemicals

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Carlson, R.; Drummond, R.; Hammermeister, D.; Bradbury, S. [Environmental Protection Agency, Duluth, MN (United States). Environmental Research Lab.

    1995-12-31

    Simultaneous electrophysiological and behavioral studies were performed on juvenile Japanese medaka (Oryzias latipes) exposed to representative neurotoxic organic chemicals at sublethal concentrations. Non-invasive recordings were made of the electrical impulses generated within giant neuronal Mauthner cells, associated interneurons or motoneurons, and musculature, all of which initiate the startle or escape response in fish. Timing in milliseconds between these electrical sequelae was measured for each fish before and at 24 and 48 hours exposure to a chemical. Also noted was the number of startle responses to number of stimuli ratio (R/S). Other groups of medaka were fed to bluegills and consumption times recorded to assess their ability to escape predation. These results were compared to neurophysiological effect levels. Phenol, 2,4-dinitrophenol, chlorpyrifos, fenvalerate, and 1-octanol impaired the ability of medaka to escape predation at all concentrations. Medaka were more susceptible to predation in high concentrations of carbaryl and strychnine, but less susceptible at low concentrations, whereas the reverse was true for endosulfan. The variety of neurological effects detected at these concentrations suggest that different mechanisms may be responsible. Phenol and strychnine affected Mauthner cell to motoneuron transmission, chlorpyrifos and carbaryl showed neuromuscular effects, and R/S was affected by most chemicals. Although a variety of neurotoxic mechanisms were examined, the exposure threshold for significant effects for each specific compound was found to be consistent for both the neurophysiological and behavioral endpoints.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  3. Local adaptation and the potential effects of a contaminant on predator avoidance and antipredator responses under global warming: a space-for-time substitution approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janssens, Lizanne; Dinh Van, Khuong; Debecker, Sara; Bervoets, Lieven; Stoks, Robby

    2014-01-01

    The ability to deal with temperature-induced changes in interactions with contaminants and predators under global warming is one of the outstanding, applied evolutionary questions. For this, it is crucial to understand how contaminants will affect activity levels, predator avoidance and antipredator responses under global warming and to what extent gradual thermal evolution may mitigate these effects. Using a space-for-time substitution approach, we assessed the potential for gradual thermal evolution shaping activity (mobility and foraging), predator avoidance and antipredator responses when Ischnura elegans damselfly larvae were exposed to zinc in a common-garden warming experiment at the mean summer water temperatures of shallow water bodies at southern and northern latitudes (24 and 20°C, respectively). Zinc reduced mobility and foraging, predator avoidance and escape swimming speed. Importantly, high-latitude populations showed stronger zinc-induced reductions in escape swimming speed at both temperatures, and in activity levels at the high temperature. The latter indicates that local thermal adaptation may strongly change the ecological impact of contaminants under global warming. Our study underscores the critical importance of considering local adaptation along natural gradients when integrating biotic interactions in ecological risk assessment, and the potential of gradual thermal evolution mitigating the effects of warming on the vulnerability to contaminants. PMID:24665344

  4. Local adaptation and the potential effects of a contaminant on predator avoidance and antipredator responses under global warming: a space-for-time substitution approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janssens, Lizanne; Dinh Van, Khuong; Debecker, Sara; Bervoets, Lieven; Stoks, Robby

    2014-03-01

    The ability to deal with temperature-induced changes in interactions with contaminants and predators under global warming is one of the outstanding, applied evolutionary questions. For this, it is crucial to understand how contaminants will affect activity levels, predator avoidance and antipredator responses under global warming and to what extent gradual thermal evolution may mitigate these effects. Using a space-for-time substitution approach, we assessed the potential for gradual thermal evolution shaping activity (mobility and foraging), predator avoidance and antipredator responses when Ischnura elegans damselfly larvae were exposed to zinc in a common-garden warming experiment at the mean summer water temperatures of shallow water bodies at southern and northern latitudes (24 and 20°C, respectively). Zinc reduced mobility and foraging, predator avoidance and escape swimming speed. Importantly, high-latitude populations showed stronger zinc-induced reductions in escape swimming speed at both temperatures, and in activity levels at the high temperature. The latter indicates that local thermal adaptation may strongly change the ecological impact of contaminants under global warming. Our study underscores the critical importance of considering local adaptation along natural gradients when integrating biotic interactions in ecological risk assessment, and the potential of gradual thermal evolution mitigating the effects of warming on the vulnerability to contaminants.

  5. Different effects of variation in Xanthium strumarium L. (Compositae) on two insect seed predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hare, J Daniel; Futuyma, Douglas J

    1978-01-01

    To determine the relative importance of variation in several plant characters on susceptibility to herbivores, we examined patterns of seed predation by two monophagous insect species and patterns of variation in ten populations of the cocklebur, Xanthium strumarium. Multiple regression analysis disclosed that one seed predator was most influenced by plant chemical variation, the other was significantly influenced by both chemical and morphological variation, but variation in yet another character, general burr size, was most important in conferring resistance to both insects simultaneously. The plant populations differed most in this character. Although many of the plant characters were correlated with each other, those important in determining susceptibility to each insect species were uncorrelated and independent of those conferring resistance to both insects simultaneously.These results imply that ecological similar herbivores may be influenced by different aspects of plant variation, and that predictions of evolutionary responses of local plant populations to herbivory may require knowledge of the structure of local herbivore communities and the dynamics of their establishment.

  6. Top-down population regulation of a top predator: lions in the Ngorongoro Crater.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kissui, Bernard M; Packer, Craig

    2004-09-07

    Efforts to determine whether bottom-up or top-down processes regulate populations have been hampered by difficulties in accurately estimating the population's carrying capacity and in directly measuring food intake rate, the impacts of interspecific competition and exposure to natural enemies. We report on 40 years of data on the lion population in Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania, which showed strong evidence of density-dependent regulation at 100-120 individuals but has remained below 60 individuals for the past decade despite consistently high prey abundance. The lions enjoy a higher per capita food-intake rate and higher cub recruitment at low population density, and interspecific competition has not increased in recent years. These animals have suffered from a number of severe disease outbreaks over the past 40 years, but, whereas the population recovered exponentially from a severe epizootic in 1963, three outbreaks between 1994 and 2001 have occurred in such rapid succession that the population has been unable to return to the carrying capacity. The Crater population may have become unusually vulnerable to infectious disease in recent years owing to its close proximity to a growing human population and a history of close inbreeding. The Crater lions may therefore provide important insights into the future of many endangered populations.

  7. The Effects of Ocean Acidification on Predator-Prey Interactions between Mya arenaria and Callinectes sapidus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Longmire, K.; Glaspie, C.; Seitz, R.

    2016-02-01

    The study examined the implications of ocean acidification for Mya arenaria and the predator-prey dynamics between M. arenaria and Callinectes sapidus. Clams were subjected to either ambient conditions or acidified conditions and grown over four weeks. Mortality, shell lengths, and biomass (ash-free dry weights) were recorded for clams destructively sampled each week. Clams were subjected to behavioral experiments to determine their response to an approaching physical disturbance. Crabs were exposed to acidified or ambient conditions for 48 hours, and placed in 48 hour mesocosm trials with clams. Shell lengths, mortality and biomass between the ambient and acidified clams were not significantly different between acidified and ambient treatments. Shell ash weights were lower for acidified clams, evidence of shell dissolution. In the behavioral experiment, ocean acidification reduced the ability of clams to respond to a predator stimulus. Lastly, in predator-prey mesocosm trials, in ambient conditions, crabs ate all or none of the available clams, whereas acidified crabs ate all available clams in many trials and ate at least one acidified clam per trial. The early effects of ocean acidification on M. arenaria will manifest in trophic interactions with other species, rather than impacting M. arenaria alone.

  8. 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.

  9. Effect of Pollen Feed on Parasitization and Predatism of Cephalonomia stephanoderis onHypothenemus hampei

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dwi Suci Rahayu

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Biological control of the coffee berry borer (Hypothenemus hampeiusing parasitoid Cephalonomia stephanoderishas been developed through the improvement of the parasitoid role may using pollens as feed source. The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of cover crop and weed pollens on parasitization and predatism of C. stephanoderis.The applied treatments were pollens of Turnera ulmifolia, Arachis pintoi, Ageratum conyzoidesadded in glass tube that consist of 10 CBB pupaes and a mated female of C. stephanoderis. Number of pupae parasitized and pupae preyed were observed. The result showed that addition of A. Pintoi pollen increased the number of pupae parasitized at 135% whereas addition of T. ulmifolia and A. conyzoides pollens did not affect parasitization of C. Stephanoderis. The predatismof C. stephanoderiswas higher than parasitization to pupae of H. hampei which showed that the behavior of C. stephanoderiswas parasitization. Addition of T. ulmifolia, A. pintoi, and A. conyzoidespollens increased the number of pupae predatism at 132%, 102%, and 225%, respectively. Key words: Ageratum conyzoides, Arachis pintoi, Cephalonomia stephanoderis, Hypothenemus hampei,parasitization, predatism, pollens, Turnera ulmifolia

  10. Population Differentiation of Southern Indian Male Lineages Correlates with Agricultural Expansions Predating the Caste System

    OpenAIRE

    ArunKumar, GaneshPrasad; Soria-Hernanz, David F.; Pitchappan, Ramasamy

    2012-01-01

    Previous studies that pooled Indian populations from a wide variety of geographical locations, have obtained contradictory conclusions about the processes of the establishment of the Varna caste system and its genetic impact on the origins and demographic histories of Indian populations. To further investigate these questions we took advantage that both Y chromosome and caste designation are paternally inherited, and genotyped 1,680 Y chromosomes representing 12 tribal and 19 non-tribal (cast...

  11. Population differentiation of southern Indian male lineages correlates with agricultural expansions predating the caste system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arunkumar, Ganeshprasad; Soria-Hernanz, David F; Kavitha, Valampuri John; Arun, Varatharajan Santhakumari; Syama, Adhikarla; Ashokan, Kumaran Samy; Gandhirajan, Kavandanpatti Thangaraj; Vijayakumar, Koothapuli; Narayanan, Muthuswamy; Jayalakshmi, Mariakuttikan; Ziegle, Janet S; Royyuru, Ajay K; Parida, Laxmi; Wells, R Spencer; Renfrew, Colin; Schurr, Theodore G; Smith, Chris Tyler; Platt, Daniel E; Pitchappan, Ramasamy

    2012-01-01

    Previous studies that pooled Indian populations from a wide variety of geographical locations, have obtained contradictory conclusions about the processes of the establishment of the Varna caste system and its genetic impact on the origins and demographic histories of Indian populations. To further investigate these questions we took advantage that both Y chromosome and caste designation are paternally inherited, and genotyped 1,680 Y chromosomes representing 12 tribal and 19 non-tribal (caste) endogamous populations from the predominantly Dravidian-speaking Tamil Nadu state in the southernmost part of India. Tribes and castes were both characterized by an overwhelming proportion of putatively Indian autochthonous Y-chromosomal haplogroups (H-M69, F-M89, R1a1-M17, L1-M27, R2-M124, and C5-M356; 81% combined) with a shared genetic heritage dating back to the late Pleistocene (10-30 Kya), suggesting that more recent Holocene migrations from western Eurasia contributed caste) system from the historically-documented Brahmin migrations into the area. In contrast, the overall Y-chromosomal patterns, the time depth of population diversifications and the period of differentiation were best explained by the emergence of agricultural technology in South Asia. These results highlight the utility of detailed local genetic studies within India, without prior assumptions about the importance of Varna rank status for population grouping, to obtain new insights into the relative influences of past demographic events for the population structure of the whole of modern India.

  12. Immune and individual level effects of environmental pollutants in North-Atlantic top predators

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Desforges, Jean-Pierre

    2017-01-01

    techniques can be used to assess effects on specific health endpoints. To date, however, most studies focus on single compound exposures, rather than realistic complex mixtures, and little has been done to extrapolate molecular effects to higher levels of biological organization. The aim of my PhD was to use...... a unique combination of approaches, namely statistical meta-analyses, in vitro experimentation, analytical chemistry, and ecological modeling, to gain further insight into pollutant accumulation and effects at molecular and organism levels in North-Atlantic top predators....

  13. Effect of Ecological Restoration on Body Condition of a Predator.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel González-Tokman

    Full Text Available Ecological restoration attempts to recover the structure and function of ecosystems that have been degraded by human activities. A crucial test of ecosystem recovery would be to determine whether individuals in restored environments are as healthy as those in conserved environments. However, the impact of restoration on physiology of terrestrial animals has never been tested. Here, we evaluated the effect of two restoration methods on body condition measured as body size, body mass, lipid and muscle content of the spider Nephila clavipes in a tropical dry forest that has suffered chronic disturbance due to cattle grazing. We used experimental plots that had been excluded from disturbance by cattle grazing during eight years. Plots were either planted with native trees (i. e. maximal intervention, or only excluded from disturbance (i. e. minimal intervention, and were compared with control conserved (remnants of original forest and disturbed plots (where cattle is allowed to graze. We predicted (1 better body condition in spiders of conserved and restored sites, compared to disturbed sites, and (2 better body condition in plots with maximal intervention than in plots with minimal intervention. The first prediction was not supported in males or females, and the second prediction was only supported in females: body dry mass was higher in planted than in conserved plots for spiders of both sexes and also higher that in disturbed plots for males, suggesting that plantings are providing more resources. We discuss how different life histories and environmental pressures, such as food availability, parasitism, and competition for resources can explain our contrasting findings in male and female spiders. By studying animal physiology in restoration experiments it is possible to understand the mechanistic basis of ecological and evolutionary processes that determine success of ecological restoration.

  14. 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.

  15. Effects of depth and crayfish size on predation risk and foraging profitability of a lotic crayfish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flinders, C.A.; Magoulick, D.D.

    2007-01-01

    We conducted field surveys and experiments to determine whether observed distributions of crayfish among habitats were influenced by differential resource availability, foraging profitability, and predation rates and whether these factors differed with crayfish size and habitat depth. We sampled available food resources (detritus and invertebrates) and shelter as rock substrate in deep (>50 cm) and shallow (<30 cm) habitats. We used an enclosure-exclosure experiment to examine the effects of water depth and crayfish size on crayfish biomass and survival, and to determine whether these factors affected silt accrual, algal abundance (chlorophyll a [chl a]), and detritus and invertebrate biomass (g ash-free dry mass) differently from enclosures without crayfish. We conducted tethering experiments to assess predation on small (13-17 mm carapace length [CL]) and large (23-30 mm CL) Orconectes marchandi and to determine whether predation rates differed with water depth. Invertebrate biomass was significantly greater in shallow water than in deep water, whereas detritus biomass did not differ significantly between depths. Cobble was significantly more abundant in shallow than in deep water. Depth and crayfish size had a significant interactive effect on change in size of enclosed crayfish when CL was used as a measure of size but not when biomass was used as a measure of size. CL of small crayfish increased significantly more in enclosures in shallow than in deep water, but CL of large crayfish changed very little at either depth. Silt, chl a, and detritus biomass were significantly lower on tiles in large- than in small- and no-crayfish enclosures, and invertebrate biomass was significantly lower in large- than in no-crayfish enclosures. Significantly more crayfish were consumed in deep than in shallow water regardless of crayfish size. Our results suggest that predation and resource availability might influence the depth distribution of small and large crayfish. Small

  16. Population differentiation of southern Indian male lineages correlates with agricultural expansions predating the caste system.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ganeshprasad Arunkumar

    Full Text Available Previous studies that pooled Indian populations from a wide variety of geographical locations, have obtained contradictory conclusions about the processes of the establishment of the Varna caste system and its genetic impact on the origins and demographic histories of Indian populations. To further investigate these questions we took advantage that both Y chromosome and caste designation are paternally inherited, and genotyped 1,680 Y chromosomes representing 12 tribal and 19 non-tribal (caste endogamous populations from the predominantly Dravidian-speaking Tamil Nadu state in the southernmost part of India. Tribes and castes were both characterized by an overwhelming proportion of putatively Indian autochthonous Y-chromosomal haplogroups (H-M69, F-M89, R1a1-M17, L1-M27, R2-M124, and C5-M356; 81% combined with a shared genetic heritage dating back to the late Pleistocene (10-30 Kya, suggesting that more recent Holocene migrations from western Eurasia contributed <20% of the male lineages. We found strong evidence for genetic structure, associated primarily with the current mode of subsistence. Coalescence analysis suggested that the social stratification was established 4-6 Kya and there was little admixture during the last 3 Kya, implying a minimal genetic impact of the Varna (caste system from the historically-documented Brahmin migrations into the area. In contrast, the overall Y-chromosomal patterns, the time depth of population diversifications and the period of differentiation were best explained by the emergence of agricultural technology in South Asia. These results highlight the utility of detailed local genetic studies within India, without prior assumptions about the importance of Varna rank status for population grouping, to obtain new insights into the relative influences of past demographic events for the population structure of the whole of modern India.

  17. Quantile regression of microgeographic variation in population characteristics of an invasive vertebrate predator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siers, Shane R.; Savidge, Julie A.; Reed, Robert

    2017-01-01

    Localized ecological conditions have the potential to induce variation in population characteristics such as size distributions and body conditions. The ability to generalize the influence of ecological characteristics on such population traits may be particularly meaningful when those traits influence prospects for successful management interventions. To characterize variability in invasive Brown Treesnake population attributes within and among habitat types, we conducted systematic and seasonally-balanced surveys, collecting 100 snakes from each of 18 sites: three replicates within each of six major habitat types comprising 95% of Guam’s geographic expanse. Our study constitutes one of the most comprehensive and controlled samplings of any published snake study. Quantile regression on snake size and body condition indicated significant ecological heterogeneity, with a general trend of relative consistency of size classes and body conditions within and among scrub and Leucaena forest habitat types and more heterogeneity among ravine forest, savanna, and urban residential sites. Larger and more robust snakes were found within some savanna and urban habitat replicates, likely due to relative availability of larger prey. Compared to more homogeneous samples in the wet season, variability in size distributions and body conditions was greater during the dry season. Although there is evidence of habitat influencing Brown Treesnake populations at localized scales (e.g., the higher prevalence of larger snakes—particularly males—in savanna and urban sites), the level of variability among sites within habitat types indicates little ability to make meaningful predictions about these traits at unsampled locations. Seasonal variability within sites and habitats indicates that localized population characterization should include sampling in both wet and dry seasons. Extreme values at single replicates occasionally influenced overall habitat patterns, while pooling

  18. Noise-induced extinction for a ratio-dependent predator-prey model with strong Allee effect in prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mandal, Partha Sarathi

    2018-04-01

    In this paper, we study a stochastically forced ratio-dependent predator-prey model with strong Allee effect in prey population. In the deterministic case, we show that the model exhibits the stable interior equilibrium point or limit cycle corresponding to the co-existence of both species. We investigate a probabilistic mechanism of the noise-induced extinction in a zone of stable interior equilibrium point. Computational methods based on the stochastic sensitivity function technique are applied for the analysis of the dispersion of random states near stable interior equilibrium point. This method allows to construct a confidence domain and estimate the threshold value of the noise intensity for a transition from the coexistence to the extinction.

  19. Divergent induced responses to an invasive predator in marine mussel populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freeman, Aaren S; Byers, James E

    2006-08-11

    Invasive species may precipitate evolutionary change in invaded communities. In southern New England (USA) the invasive Asian shore crab, Hemigrapsus sanguineus, preys on mussels (Mytlius edulis), but the crab has not yet invaded northern New England. We show that southern New England mussels express inducible shell thickening when exposed to waterborne cues from Hemigrapsus, whereas naïve northern mussel populations do not respond. Yet, both populations thicken their shells in response to a long-established crab, Carcinus maenas. Our findings are consistent with the rapid evolution of an inducible morphological response to Hemigrapsus within 15 years of its introduction.

  20. Separate and combined effects of habitat-specific fish predation on the survival of invasive and native gammarids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kotta, Jonne; Orav-Kotta, Helen; Herkül, Kristjan

    2010-10-01

    The North-American amphipod Gammarus tigrinus was observed for the first time in the northern Baltic Sea in 2003. The invasive amphipod has been particularly successful in some habitats (e.g. on pebbles) where it has become one of the most abundant gammarid species. We studied experimentally if the dominant fish Gasterosteus aculeatus preyed differentially on the exotic G. tigrinus and the native Gammarus salinus, if predation differed among habitats, and if one gammarid species facilitated predation on the other. The experiment demonstrated that (1) fish preyed more on the exotic G. tigrinus than the native G. salinus. (2) Predation did not differ among habitats. (3) Gammarus tigrinus facilitated the predation on G. salinus and this facilitation varied among habitats with significant effects on pebbles. Thus, the combined effect of habitat-specific fish predation and competition between gammarid amphipods is a possible explanation of the current range of G. tigrinus in the northern Baltic Sea. G. tigrinus seems to establish in habitats where it can significantly increase fish predation on the native gammarids.

  1. Landscape And Edge Effects On The Distribution Of Mammalian Predators In Missouri

    Science.gov (United States)

    William D. Dijak; Frank R. Thompson III

    2000-01-01

    Raccoons (Procyon lotor), opossums (Didelphis virginiana), and striped skunks (Mephitis mephitis) are predators of forest songbird eggs and nestlings. We examined the relative abundance of these predators at landscape and local scales to better understand predation risks. At the landscape scale, we examined the...

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. Maternally derived chemical defences are an effective deterrent against some predators of poison frog tadpoles (Oophaga pumilio).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stynoski, Jennifer L; Shelton, Georgia; Stynoski, Peter

    2014-05-01

    Parents defend their young in many ways, including provisioning chemical defences. Recent work in a poison frog system offers the first example of an animal that provisions its young with alkaloids after hatching or birth rather than before. But it is not yet known whether maternally derived alkaloids are an effective defence against offspring predators. We identified the predators of Oophaga pumilio tadpoles and conducted laboratory and field choice tests to determine whether predators are deterred by alkaloids in tadpoles. We found that snakes, spiders and beetle larvae are common predators of O. pumilio tadpoles. Snakes were not deterred by alkaloids in tadpoles. However, spiders were less likely to consume mother-fed O. pumilio tadpoles than either alkaloid-free tadpoles of the red-eyed treefrog, Agalychnis callidryas, or alkaloid-free O. pumilio tadpoles that had been hand-fed with A. callidryas eggs. Thus, maternally derived alkaloids reduce the risk of predation for tadpoles, but only against some predators. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  5. Nowhere to hide: Effects of linear features on predator-prey dynamics in a large mammal system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeMars, Craig A; Boutin, Stan

    2018-01-01

    Rapid landscape alteration associated with human activity is currently challenging the evolved dynamical stability of many predator-prey systems by forcing species to behaviourally respond to novel environmental stimuli. In many forested systems, linear features (LFs) such as roads, pipelines and resource exploration lines (i.e. seismic lines) are a ubiquitous form of landscape alteration that have been implicated in altering predator-prey dynamics. One hypothesized effect is that LFs facilitate predator movement into and within prey refugia, thereby increasing predator-prey spatial overlap. We evaluated this hypothesis in a large mammal system, focusing on the interactions between boreal woodland caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou) and their two main predators, wolves (Canis lupus) and black bears (Ursus americanus), during the calving season of caribou. In this system, LFs extend into and occur within peatlands (i.e. bogs and nutrient-poor fens), a habitat type highly used by caribou due to its refugia effects. Using resource selection analyses, we found that LFs increased predator selection of peatlands. Female caribou appeared to respond by avoiding LFs and areas with high LF density. However, in our study area, most caribou cannot completely avoid exposure to LFs and variation in female response had demographic effects. In particular, increasing proportional use of LFs by females negatively impacted survival of their neonate calves. Collectively, these results demonstrate how LFs can reduce the efficacy of prey refugia. Mitigating such effects will require limiting or restoring LFs within prey refugia, although the effectiveness of mitigation efforts will depend upon spatial scale, which in turn will be influenced by the life-history traits of predator and prey. © 2017 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2017 British Ecological Society.

  6. Involvement of noradrenergic and corticoid receptors in the consolidation of the lasting anxiogenic effects of predator stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adamec, R; Muir, C; Grimes, M; Pearcey, K

    2007-05-16

    The roles of beta-NER (beta-noradrenergic receptor), GR (glucocorticoid) and mineral corticoid receptors (MR) in the consolidation of anxiogenic effects of predator stress were studied. One minute after predator stress, different groups of rats were injected (ip) with vehicle, propranolol (beta-NER blocker, 5 and 10 mg/kg), mifepristone (RU486, GR blocker, 20 mg/kg), spironolactone (MR blocker, 50 mg/kg), propranolol (5 mg/kg) plus RU486 (20 mg/kg) or the anxiolytic, chloradiazepoxide (CPZ, 10 mg/kg). One week later, rodent anxiety was assessed in elevated plus maze, hole board, light/dark box, social interaction and acoustic startle. Considering all tests except startle, propranolol dose dependently blocked consolidation of lasting anxiogenic effects of predator stress in all tests. GR receptor block alone was ineffective. However, GR block in combination with an ineffective dose of propranolol did blocked consolidation of predator stress effects in all tests, suggesting a synergism between beta-NER and GR. Surprisingly, MR block prevented consolidation of anxiogenic effects in all tests except the light/dark box. CPZ post stress was ineffective against the anxiogenic impact of predator stress. Study of startle was complicated by the fact that anxiogenic effects of stress on startle amplitude manifested as both an increase and a decrease in startle amplitude. Suppression of startle occurred in stressed plus vehicle injected groups handled three times prior to predator stress. In contrast, stressed plus vehicle rats handled five times prior to predator stress showed increases in startle, as did all predator stressed only groups. Mechanisms of consolidation of the different startle responses appear to differ. CPZ post stress blocked startle suppression but not enhancement of startle. Propranolol post stress had no effect on either suppression or enhancement of startle. GR block alone post stress prevented suppression of startle, but not enhancement. In contrast

  7. 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

  8. Population Fluctuations of Insect Predators Species Found on Almond and WildAlmond Tree Adjacent to Pistachio Orchard in Şanlıurfa

    OpenAIRE

    YANIK, Ertan

    2013-01-01

    Almond (Prunus amygdalus Batsch) and wild almond (Amygdalus orientalis) trees are the most abundant species adjacent to pistachio orchards of Sanliurfa province. This study focused on trees that located in the vicinity of the pistachio orchards, to determine whether these alternative habitats are a source of pistachio psilla’s (Agonoscena pistaciae Burck. and Laut.) insect predators species. For this purpose surveys were conducted to population fluctuations of insect predatory species of pist...

  9. Effects of predation on diel activity and habitat use of the coral-reef shrimp Cinetorhynchus hendersoni (Rhynchocinetidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ory, Nicolas C.; Dudgeon, David; Duprey, Nicolas; Thiel, Martin

    2014-09-01

    Nonlethal effects of predators on prey behaviour are still poorly understood, although they may have cascading effects through food webs. Underwater observations and experiments were conducted on a shallow fringing coral reef in Malaysia to examine whether predation risks affect diel activity, habitat use, and survival of the rhynchocinetid shrimp Cinetorhynchus hendersoni. The study site was within a protected area where predatory fish were abundant. Visual surveys and tethering experiments were conducted in April-May 2010 to compare the abundance of shrimps and predatory fishes and the relative predation intensity on shrimps during day and night. Shrimps were not seen during the day but came out of refuges at night, when the risk of being eaten was reduced. Shrimp preferences for substrata of different complexities and types were examined at night when they could be seen on the reef; complex substrata were preferred, while simple substrata were avoided. Shrimps were abundant on high-complexity columnar-foliate Porites rus, but tended to make little use of branching Acropora spp. Subsequent tethering experiments, conducted during daytime in June 2013, compared the relative mortality of shrimps on simple (sand-rubble, massive Porites spp.) and complex ( P. rus, branching Acropora spp.) substrata under different predation risk scenarios (i.e., different tether lengths and exposure durations). The mortality of shrimps with short tethers (high risk) was high on all substrata while, under low and intermediate predation risks (long tethers), shrimp mortality was reduced on complex corals relative to that on sand-rubble or massive Porites spp. Overall, mortality was lowest on P. rus. Our study indicates that predation risks constrain shrimp activity and habitat choice, forcing them to hide deep inside complex substrata during the day. Such behavioural responses to predation risks and their consequences for the trophic role of invertebrate mesoconsumers warrant further

  10. Ecotoxicological effects of buprofezin on fecundity, growth, development, and predation of the wolf spider Pirata piratoides (Schenkel).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deng, Lingling; Xu, Muqi; Cao, Hong; Dai, Jiayin

    2008-11-01

    The toxicological effects of buprofezin, an insect growth regulator, on the fecundity, development, and pest control potential of the wolf spider Pirata piratoides (Schenkel) (Araneae: Lycosidae) were investigated in the laboratory. It was shown that buprofezin had low toxicity to P. piratoides and that the median lethal dosage (LD(50)) 48 h and 10% lethal dosage (LD(10)) after topical application for female spiders were 653 and 316 mg buprofezin/mg fresh weight of spider, respectively. Buprofezin significantly reduced the percent hatching of spiders' eggs but had only a slight effect on egg production. No negative effects on the development and growth were observed. However, spider predation rates were strongly affected: Insecticide-treated females predated on fewer prey than the controls, and their predation rate did not recover even 5 days after insecticide application. This indicated that their pest control potential might be influenced by buprofezin, and the use of buprofezin in biological control of insects is discussed.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-01-01

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

  12. Effects of Paternal Predation Risk and Rearing Environment on Maternal Investment and Development of Defensive Responses in the Offspring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, Jessica

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Detecting past experiences with predators of a potential mate informs a female about prevailing ecological threats, in addition to stress-induced phenotypes that may be disseminated to offspring. We examined whether prior exposure of a male rat to a predator (cat) odor influences the attraction of a female toward a male, subsequent mother–infant interactions and the development of defensive (emotional) responses in the offspring. Females displayed less interest in males that had experienced predator odor. Mothers that reared young in larger, seminaturalistic housing provided more licking and grooming and active arched back-nursing behavior toward their offspring compared with dams housed in standard housing, although some effects interacted with paternal experience. Paternal predation risk and maternal rearing environment revealed sex-dependent differences in offspring wean weight, juvenile social interactions, and anxiety-like behavior in adolescence. Additionally, paternal predator experience and maternal housing independently affected variations in crf gene promoter acetylation and crf gene expression in response to an acute stressor in offspring. Our results show for the first time in mammals that variation among males in their predator encounters may contribute to stable behavioral variation among females in preference for mates and maternal care, even when the females are not directly exposed to predator threat. Furthermore, when offspring were exposed to the same threat experienced by the father, hypothalamic crf gene regulation was influenced by paternal olfactory experience and early housing. These results, together with our previous findings, suggest that paternal stress exposure and maternal rearing conditions can influence maternal behavior and the development of defensive responses in offspring. PMID:27896313

  13. 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.

  14. Straight line foraging in yellow-eyed penguins: new insights into cascading fisheries effects and orientation capabilities of marine predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattern, Thomas; Ellenberg, Ursula; Houston, David M; Lamare, Miles; Davis, Lloyd S; van Heezik, Yolanda; Seddon, Philip J

    2013-01-01

    Free-ranging marine predators rarely search for prey along straight lines because dynamic ocean processes usually require complex search strategies. If linear movement patterns occur they are usually associated with travelling events or migratory behaviour. However, recent fine scale tracking of flying seabirds has revealed straight-line movements while birds followed fishing vessels. Unlike flying seabirds, penguins are not known to target and follow fishing vessels. Yet yellow-eyed penguins from New Zealand often exhibit directed movement patterns while searching for prey at the seafloor, a behaviour that seems to contradict common movement ecology theories. While deploying GPS dive loggers on yellow-eyed penguins from the Otago Peninsula we found that the birds frequently followed straight lines for several kilometres with little horizontal deviation. In several cases individuals swam up and down the same line, while some of the lines were followed by more than one individual. Using a remote operated vehicle (ROV) we found a highly visible furrow on the seafloor most likely caused by an otter board of a demersal fish trawl, which ran in a straight line exactly matching the trajectory of a recent line identified from penguin tracks. We noted high abundances of benthic scavengers associated with fisheries-related bottom disturbance. While our data demonstrate the acute way-finding capabilities of benthic foraging yellow-eyed penguins, they also highlight how hidden cascading effects of coastal fisheries may alter behaviour and potentially even population dynamics of marine predators, an often overlooked fact in the examination of fisheries' impacts.

  15. Straight line foraging in yellow-eyed penguins: new insights into cascading fisheries effects and orientation capabilities of marine predators.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Mattern

    Full Text Available Free-ranging marine predators rarely search for prey along straight lines because dynamic ocean processes usually require complex search strategies. If linear movement patterns occur they are usually associated with travelling events or migratory behaviour. However, recent fine scale tracking of flying seabirds has revealed straight-line movements while birds followed fishing vessels. Unlike flying seabirds, penguins are not known to target and follow fishing vessels. Yet yellow-eyed penguins from New Zealand often exhibit directed movement patterns while searching for prey at the seafloor, a behaviour that seems to contradict common movement ecology theories. While deploying GPS dive loggers on yellow-eyed penguins from the Otago Peninsula we found that the birds frequently followed straight lines for several kilometres with little horizontal deviation. In several cases individuals swam up and down the same line, while some of the lines were followed by more than one individual. Using a remote operated vehicle (ROV we found a highly visible furrow on the seafloor most likely caused by an otter board of a demersal fish trawl, which ran in a straight line exactly matching the trajectory of a recent line identified from penguin tracks. We noted high abundances of benthic scavengers associated with fisheries-related bottom disturbance. While our data demonstrate the acute way-finding capabilities of benthic foraging yellow-eyed penguins, they also highlight how hidden cascading effects of coastal fisheries may alter behaviour and potentially even population dynamics of marine predators, an often overlooked fact in the examination of fisheries' impacts.

  16. The Effects of Dispersal and Predator Density on Prey Survival in an Insect-Red Clover Metacommunity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stasek, David J; Radl, James N; Crist, Thomas O

    2018-01-01

    Trophic interactions are often studied within habitat patches, but among-patch dispersal of individuals may influence local patch dynamics. Metacommunity concepts incorporate the effects of dispersal on local and community dynamics. There are few experimental tests of metacommunity theory using insects compared to those conducted in microbial microcosms. Using connected experimental mesocosms, we varied the density of the leafhopper Agallia constricta Van Duzee (Homoptera: Cicadellidae) and a generalist insect predator, the damsel bug (Nabis spp., Heteroptera: Nabidae), to determine the effects of conspecific and predator density and varying the time available to dispersal among mesocosms on predation rates, dispersal rates, and leafhopper survival. Conspecific and damsel bug density did not affect dispersal rates in leafhoppers, but this may be due to leafhoppers' aversion to leaving the host plants or the connecting tubes between mesocosms hindering leafhopper movement. Leafhopper dispersal was higher in high-dispersal treatments. Survival rates of A. constricta were also lowest in treatments where dispersal was not limited. This is one of the first experimental studies to vary predator density and the time available to dispersal. Our results indicate that dispersal is the key to understanding short-term processes such as prey survival in predator-prey metacommunities. Further work is needed to determine how dispersal rates influence persistence of communities in multigenerational studies. © The Author(s) 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America.

  17. The Effects of Early-Life Predator Stress on Anxiety- and Depression-Like Behaviors of Adult Rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lu-jing Chen

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Childhood emotional trauma contributes significantly to certain psychopathologies, such as post-traumatic stress disorder. In experimental animals, however, whether or not early-life stress results in behavioral abnormalities in adult animals still remains controversial. Here, we investigated both short-term and long-term changes of anxiety- and depression-like behaviors of Wistar rats after being exposed to chronic feral cat stress in juvenile ages. The 2-week predator stress decreased spontaneous activities immediately following stress but did not increase depression- or anxiety-like behaviors 4 weeks after the stimulation in adulthood. Instead, juvenile predator stress had some protective effects, though not very obvious, in adulthood. We also exposed genetic depression model rats, Wistar Kyoto (WKY rats, to the same predator stress. In WKY rats, the same early-life predator stress did not enhance anxiety- or depression-like behaviors in both the short-term and long-term. However, the stressed WKY rats showed slightly reduced depression-like behaviors in adulthood. These results indicate that in both normal Wistar rats and WKY rats, early-life predator stress led to protective, rather than negative, effects in adulthood.

  18. The Effects of Early-Life Predator Stress on Anxiety- and Depression-Like Behaviors of Adult Rats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Lu-jing; Shen, Bing-qing; Liu, Dan-dan; Li, Sheng-tian

    2014-01-01

    Childhood emotional trauma contributes significantly to certain psychopathologies, such as post-traumatic stress disorder. In experimental animals, however, whether or not early-life stress results in behavioral abnormalities in adult animals still remains controversial. Here, we investigated both short-term and long-term changes of anxiety- and depression-like behaviors of Wistar rats after being exposed to chronic feral cat stress in juvenile ages. The 2-week predator stress decreased spontaneous activities immediately following stress but did not increase depression- or anxiety-like behaviors 4 weeks after the stimulation in adulthood. Instead, juvenile predator stress had some protective effects, though not very obvious, in adulthood. We also exposed genetic depression model rats, Wistar Kyoto (WKY) rats, to the same predator stress. In WKY rats, the same early-life predator stress did not enhance anxiety- or depression-like behaviors in both the short-term and long-term. However, the stressed WKY rats showed slightly reduced depression-like behaviors in adulthood. These results indicate that in both normal Wistar rats and WKY rats, early-life predator stress led to protective, rather than negative, effects in adulthood. PMID:24839560

  19. Effects of invertebrate predators and a pesticide on temporary pond microcosms used for aquatic toxicity testing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Barry, Michael J.; Davies, Warren

    2004-01-01

    The effects of increased trophic complexity, through the addition of predatory notonectids (Anisops deanei), on temporary pond microcosms used for aquatic toxicity testing were studied. Replicate microcosms were established using sediment from a dried temporary pond, and treated with one of four concentrations of the organochlorine pesticide endosulfan (0, 1, 10 or 50 μg/L), in the presence or absence of six A. deanei. The tanks were sampled regularly for nine weeks following the addition of the predators and the entire contents of each tank counted after 12 weeks. Analysis using non-metric multidimensional scaling (MDS) and non-parametric MANOVA showed that both Anisops and endosulfan at concentrations >10 μg/L significantly altered community structure. However, an interaction between the effects of Anisops and the effects of endosulfan was not detected. The addition of Anisops did not increase the variability of response and thus did not reduce the sensitivity of the test method

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  2. 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.

  3. Effects of feral cats on the evolution of anti-predator behaviours in island reptiles: insights from an ancient introduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Binbin; Belasen, Anat; Pafilis, Panayiotis; Bednekoff, Peter; Foufopoulos, Johannes

    2014-08-07

    Exotic predators have driven the extinction of many island species. We examined impacts of feral cats on the abundance and anti-predator behaviours of Aegean wall lizards in the Cyclades (Greece), where cats were introduced thousands of years ago. We compared populations with high and low cat density on Naxos Island and populations on surrounding islets with no cats. Cats reduced wall lizard populations by half. Lizards facing greater risk from cats stayed closer to refuges, were more likely to shed their tails in a standardized assay, and fled at greater distances when approached by either a person in the field or a mounted cat decoy in the laboratory. All populations showed phenotypic plasticity in flight initiation distance, suggesting that this feature is ancient and could have helped wall lizards survive the initial introduction of cats to the region. Lizards from islets sought shelter less frequently and often initially approached the cat decoy. These differences reflect changes since islet isolation and could render islet lizards strongly susceptible to cat predation. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  4. Why direct effects of predation complicate the social brain hypothesis: And how incorporation of explicit proximate behavioral mechanisms might help.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Bijl, Wouter; Kolm, Niclas

    2016-06-01

    A growing number of studies have found that large brains may help animals survive by avoiding predation. These studies provide an alternative explanation for existing correlative evidence for one of the dominant hypotheses regarding the evolution of brain size in animals, the social brain hypothesis (SBH). The SBH proposes that social complexity is a major evolutionary driver of large brains. However, if predation both directly selects for large brains and higher levels of sociality, correlations between sociality and brain size may be spurious. We argue that tests of the SBH should take direct effects of predation into account, either by explicitly including them in comparative analyses or by pin-pointing the brain-behavior-fitness pathway through which the SBH operates. Existing data and theory on social behavior can then be used to identify precise candidate mechanisms and formulate new testable predictions. © 2016 WILEY Periodicals, Inc.

  5. Laboratory investigations of the effects of predator sex and size on prey selection by the Asian crab, Hemigrapsus sanguineus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brousseau, D J.; Filipowicz, A; Baglivo, J A.

    2001-07-30

    Laboratory studies have shown that the nonindigenous Asian shore crab, Hemigrapsus sanguineus, readily consumes three species of commercial bivalves: blue mussels, Mytilus edulis, soft-shell clams, Mya arenaria, and oysters, Crassostrea virginica. Although crabs can eat bivalves of a wide size range, they preferred the smaller prey (Hemigrapsus that occur in the wild, their effectiveness as predators of juvenile bivalves and their large appetites suggest an important role for these predators in restructuring the prey communities in habitats into which they have been introduced.

  6. 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

  7. Impacts of predation on dynamics of age-structured prey: Allee effects and multi-stability

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pavlová, V.; Berec, Luděk

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 5, č. 4 (2012), s. 533-544 ISSN 1874-1738 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Keywords : age-specific predation * functional response * generalist predator Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 2.052, year: 2012 http://link.springer.com/content/pdf/10.1007%2Fs12080-011-0144-y

  8. Multi-scale effects of nestling diet on breeding performance in a terrestrial top predator inferred from stable isotope analysis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaime Resano-Mayor

    Full Text Available Inter-individual diet variation within populations is likely to have important ecological and evolutionary implications. The diet-fitness relationships at the individual level and the emerging population processes are, however, poorly understood for most avian predators inhabiting complex terrestrial ecosystems. In this study, we use an isotopic approach to assess the trophic ecology of nestlings in a long-lived raptor, the Bonelli's eagle Aquila fasciata, and investigate whether nestling dietary breath and main prey consumption can affect the species' reproductive performance at two spatial scales: territories within populations and populations over a large geographic area. At the territory level, those breeding pairs whose nestlings consumed similar diets to the overall population (i.e. moderate consumption of preferred prey, but complemented by alternative prey categories or those disproportionally consuming preferred prey were more likely to fledge two chicks. An increase in the diet diversity, however, related negatively with productivity. The age and replacements of breeding pair members had also an influence on productivity, with more fledglings associated to adult pairs with few replacements, as expected in long-lived species. At the population level, mean productivity was higher in those population-years with lower dietary breadth and higher diet similarity among territories, which was related to an overall higher consumption of preferred prey. Thus, we revealed a correspondence in diet-fitness relationships at two spatial scales: territories and populations. We suggest that stable isotope analyses may be a powerful tool to monitor the diet of terrestrial avian predators on large spatio-temporal scales, which could serve to detect potential changes in the availability of those prey on which predators depend for breeding. We encourage ecologists and evolutionary and conservation biologists concerned with the multi-scale fitness

  9. Combined effects of night warming and light pollution on predator-prey interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Colleen R; Barton, Brandon T; Zhu, Likai; Radeloff, Volker C; Oliver, Kerry M; Harmon, Jason P; Ives, Anthony R

    2017-10-11

    Interactions between multiple anthropogenic environmental changes can drive non-additive effects in ecological systems, and the non-additive effects can in turn be amplified or dampened by spatial covariation among environmental changes. We investigated the combined effects of night-time warming and light pollution on pea aphids and two predatory ladybeetle species. As expected, neither night-time warming nor light pollution changed the suppression of aphids by the ladybeetle species that forages effectively in darkness. However, for the more-visual predator, warming and light had non-additive effects in which together they caused much lower aphid abundances. These results are particularly relevant for agriculture near urban areas that experience both light pollution and warming from urban heat islands. Because warming and light pollution can have non-additive effects, predicting their possible combined consequences over broad spatial scales requires knowing how they co-occur. We found that night-time temperature change since 1949 covaried positively with light pollution, which has the potential to increase their non-additive effects on pea aphid control by 70% in US alfalfa. Our results highlight the importance of non-additive effects of multiple environmental factors on species and food webs, especially when these factors co-occur. © 2017 The Author(s).

  10. 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...

  11. Effects of parents and Brown-headed Cowbirds (Molothrus ater) on nest predation risk for a songbird

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quresh S. Latif; Sacha K. Heath; John T. Rotenberry

    2012-01-01

    Nest predation limits avian fitness, so ornithologists study nest predation, but they often only document patterns of predation rates without substantively investigating underlying mechanisms. Parental behavior and predator ecology are two fundamental drivers of predation rates and patterns, but the role of parents is less certain, particularly for songbirds. Previous...

  12. Response of deposit-feeders to exclusion of epibenthic predators in a Mediterranean intertidal flat

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Como, S.; Rossi, F.; Lardicci, C.

    2004-01-01

    Deposit-feeders are common components of macrofaunal assemblages in intertidal soft sediments. Predation has been considered to have a central role in affecting their distribution and population dynamics. This study investigates the effect of epibenthic predators on deposit-feeders, inhabiting the

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  15. The effects of simulated acid rain on growth and susceptibility to predation of Phratora polaris (Col., Chrysomelidae)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Palokangas, P.; Neuvonen, S.; Haapala, S. [University of Turku, Ivalo (Finland). Kevo Subarctic Research Inst.

    1995-12-31

    The effects of long-term simulated acid rain on tritrophic interactions between mountain birch, a leaf beetle (Phratora polaris) and its predators were studied. Leaf beetle larvae were fed on foliage treated during 6-7 years with simulated acid rain of pH 3 (both H{sub 2}SO{sub 4} and HNO{sub 3}) or with spring water of pH 6 (irrigated controls). There were significant differences between treatments in the susceptibility of P. polaris to predators. Generally, beetles reared on acid treated birches were more susceptible to predators than those reared on irrigated control trees. This effect was present over several stages in the life cycle of the beetle and for several types of predators: ants preying on larvae, carabids attacking pupae and birds feeding on adult beetles. However, host plant treatment did not have consistent effects on the growth of larvae. This suggests that the defensive ability of leaf beetles is more sensitive to pollution induced variation in host foliage than larval growth. 32 refs., 1 fig., 4 tabs.

  16. 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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marc Weissburg

    2015-11-01

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

  18. 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.

  19. Effects of degeneracy and response function in a diffusion predator-prey model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Shanbing; Wu, Jianhua; Dong, Yaying

    2018-04-01

    In this paper, we consider positive solutions of a diffusion predator-prey model with a degeneracy under the Dirichlet boundary conditions. We first obtain sufficient conditions of the existence of positive solutions by the Leray-Schauder degree theory, and then analyze the limiting behavior of positive solutions as the growth rate of the predator goes to infinity and the conversion rates of the predator goes to zero, respectively. It is shown that these results for Holling II response function (i.e. m  >  0) reveal interesting contrast with that for the classical Lotka-Volterra predator-prey model (i.e. m  =  0).

  20. Different effects of planktonic invertebrate predators and fish on the plankton community in experimental mesocosms

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Šorf, M.; Brandl, Z.; Znachor, Petr; Vašek, Mojmír

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 50, č. 1 (2014), s. 71-83 ISSN 0003-4088 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : predation * zooplankton * perch * roach * mesocosms Subject RIV: DA - Hydrology ; Limnology Impact factor: 1.042, year: 2014

  1. Stickleback Population

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ulrika Candolin

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Human-induced eutrophication has increased offspring production in a population of threespine stickleback Gasterosteus aculeatus in the Baltic Sea. Here, we experimentally investigated the effects of an increased density of juveniles on behaviours that influence survival and dispersal, and, hence, population growth—habitat choice, risk taking, and foraging rate. Juveniles were allowed to choose between two habitats that differed in structural complexity, in the absence and presence of predators and conspecific juveniles. In the absence of predators or conspecifics, juveniles preferred the more complex habitat. The preference was further enhanced in the presence of a natural predator, a perch Perca fluviatilis (behind a transparent Plexiglas wall. However, an increased density of conspecifics relaxed the predator-enhanced preference for the complex habitat and increased the use of the open, more predator-exposed habitat. Foraging rate was reduced under increased perceived predation risk. These results suggest that density-dependent behaviours can cause individuals to choose suboptimal habitats where predation risk is high and foraging rate low. This could contribute to the regulation of population growth in eutrophicated areas where offspring production is high.

  2. Sublethal effects of catch-and-release fishing: measuring capture stress, fish impairment, and predation risk using a condition index

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Matthew D.; Patino, Reynaldo; Tolan, J.M.; Strauss, R.E.; Diamond, S.

    2009-01-01

    The sublethal effects of simulated capture of red snapper (Lutjanus campechanus) were analysed using physiological responses, condition indexing, and performance variables. Simulated catch-and-release fishing included combinations of depth of capture and thermocline exposure reflective of environmental conditions experienced in the Gulf of Mexico. Frequency of occurrence of barotrauma and lack of reflex response exhibited considerable individual variation. When combined into a single condition or impairment index, individual variation was reduced, and impairment showed significant increases as depth increased and with the addition of thermocline exposure. Performance variables, such as burst swimming speed (BSS) and simulated predator approach distance (AD), were also significantly different by depth. BSSs and predator ADs decreased with increasing depth, were lowest immediately after release, and were affected for up to 15 min, with longer recovery times required as depth increased. The impairment score developed was positively correlated with cortisol concentration and negatively correlated with both BSS and simulated predator AD. The impairment index proved to be an efficient method to estimate the overall impairment of red snapper in the laboratory simulations of capture and shows promise for use in field conditions, to estimate release mortality and vulnerability to predation.

  3. Nest predation increases with parental activity: separating nest site and parental activity effects.

    OpenAIRE

    Martin, T E; Scott, J; Menge, C

    2000-01-01

    Alexander Skutch hypothesized that increased parental activity can increase the risk of nest predation. We tested this hypothesis using ten open-nesting bird species in Arizona, USA. Parental activity was greater during the nestling than incubation stage because parents visited the nest frequently to feed their young during the nestling stage. However, nest predation did not generally increase with parental activity between nesting stages across the ten study species. Previous investigators h...

  4. 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.

  5. Predator persistence through variability of resource productivity in Tritrophic systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Soudijn, Floor Helena; de Roos, Andre M.

    2017-01-01

    The trophic structure of species communities depends on the energy transfer between trophic levels. Primary productivity varies strongly through time, challenging the persistence of species at higher trophic levels. Yet resource variability has mostly been studied in systems with only one or two...... trophic levels. We test the effect of variability in resource productivity in a tritrophic model system including a resource, a size-structured consumer, and a size-specific predator. The model complies with fundamental principles of mass conservation and the body-size dependence of individual......-level energetics and predator-prey interactions. Surprisingly, we find that resource variability may promote predator persistence. The positive effect of variability on the predator arises through periods with starvation mortality of juvenile prey, which reduces the intraspecific competition in the prey population...

  6. 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.

  7. Digesting the data - Effects of predator ingestion on the oxygen isotopic signature of micro-mammal teeth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barham, Milo; Blyth, Alison J.; Wallwork, Melinda D.; Joachimski, Michael M.; Martin, Laure; Evans, Noreen J.; Laming, Belinda; McDonald, Bradley J.

    2017-11-01

    Biogenic minerals such as dental apatite have become commonly analysed archives preserving geochemical indicators of past environmental conditions and palaeoecologies. However, post-mortem, biogenic minerals are modified due to the alteration/replacement of labile components, and recent moves to utilise micro-mammal tooth δ18O signatures for refined Cenozoic terrestrial palaeoclimate reconstructions has lacked consideration of the chemical effects of predator digestion. Here, the physical and chemical condition of laboratory-raised mouse (Mus musculus) teeth have been investigated in conjunction with their bulk phosphate and tissue-specific δ18O values prior, and subsequent, to ingestion and excretion by various predator species (owls, mammals and a reptile). Substantial variability (up to 2‰) in the δ18O values of both undigested teeth and those ingested by specific predators suggests significant natural heterogeneity of individual prey δ18O. Statistically distinct, lower δ18O values (∼0.7‰) are apparent in teeth ingested by barn owls compared to undigested controls as a result of the chemically and enzymatically active digestive and waste-pellet environments. Overall, dentine tissues preserve lower δ18O values than enamel, while the greatest modification of oxygen isotope signals is exhibited in the basal enamel of ingested teeth as a result of its incompletely mineralised state. However, recognition of 18O-depletion in chemically purified phosphate analyses demonstrates that modification of original δ18O values is not restricted to labile oxygen-bearing carbonate and organic phases. The style and magnitude of digestive-alteration varies with predator species and no correlation was identified between specific physical or minor/trace-element (patterns or concentrations) modification of ingested teeth and disruption of their primary oxygen isotope values. Therefore, there is a current lack of any screening tool for oxygen isotope disruption as a result

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  9. Effects of founder population size on the performance of Orius laevigatus (Hemiptera: Anthocoridae) colonies

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Castañe, C.; Bueno, V.H.P.; Carvalho, L.M.; Lenteren, van J.C.

    2014-01-01

    Orius laevigatus (Hemiptera: Anthocoridae) is a key predator of thrips and is mass reared in large numbers for use in biological control. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of founder population size on the biological and behavioral performance of O. laevigatus over time. Laboratory

  10. 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.

  11. Effects of 4-nonylphenol, fish predation and food availability on survival and life history traits of Daphnia magna straus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beklioglu, Meryem; Banu Akkas, S; Elif Ozcan, H; Bezirci, Gizem; Togan, Inci

    2010-06-01

    This study aimed to investigate the compound effect of environmentally relevant 4-nonylphenol (NP) concentrations and natural stressors-namely fish predation and food availability-on Daphnia magna, which were exposed to four NP concentrations (0, 1, 5 and 10 microg l(-1)) under optimum or low food concentrations (1.00 and 0.075 mg C l(-1), respectively) in water (un)conditioned by a fish predator (Alburnus alburnus). A(n) "environmentally relevant" and "no observable effect" concentration (NOEC) of NP (10 microg l(-1)) resulted in a significant reduction (P ecosystems. The deterioration of the life-history traits-namely, NP-induced delay in the age at first reproduction (P ecosystems. The results of this study demonstrate the importance of taking into account environmentally realistic conditions while investigating the effects of NOEC levels of toxicants on non-target aquatic species.

  12. Nest site attributes and temporal patterns of northern flicker nest loss: effects of predation and competition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisher, Ryan J; Wiebe, Karen L

    2006-04-01

    To date, most studies of nest site selection have failed to take into account more than one source of nest loss (or have combined all sources in one analysis) when examining nest site characteristics, leaving us with an incomplete understanding of the potential trade-offs that individuals may face when selecting a nest site. Our objectives were to determine whether northern flickers (Colaptes auratus) may experience a trade-off in nest site selection in response to mammalian nest predation and nest loss to a cavity nest competitor (European starling, Sturnus vulgaris). We also document within-season temporal patterns of these two sources of nest loss with the hypothesis that flickers may also be constrained in the timing of reproduction under both predatory and competitive influence. Mammalian predators frequently depredated flicker nests that were: lower to the ground, less concealed by vegetation around the cavity entrance and at the base of the nest tree, closer to coniferous forest edges and in forest clumps with a high percentage of conifer content. Proximity to coniferous edges or coniferous trees increased the probability of nest predation, but nests near conifers were less likely to be lost to starlings. Flickers may thus face a trade-off in nest site selection with respect to safety from predators or competitors. Models suggested that peaks of nest predation and nest loss to eviction occurred at the same time, although a competing model suggested that the peak of nest loss to starlings occurred 5 days earlier than the peak of mammalian predation. Differences in peaks of mammalian predation and loss to starlings may constrain any adjustment in clutch initiation date by flickers to avoid one source of nest loss.

  13. Effects of predation stress and food ration on perch gut microbiota.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zha, Yinghua; Eiler, Alexander; Johansson, Frank; Svanbäck, Richard

    2018-02-06

    Gut microbiota provide functions of importance to influence hosts' food digestion, metabolism, and protection against pathogens. Factors that affect the composition and functions of gut microbial communities are well studied in humans and other animals; however, we have limited knowledge of how natural food web factors such as stress from predators and food resource rations could affect hosts' gut microbiota and how it interacts with host sex. In this study, we designed a two-factorial experiment exposing perch (Perca fluviatilis) to a predator (pike, Esox lucius), and different food ratios, to examine the compositional and functional changes of perch gut microbiota based on 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing. We also investigated if those changes are host sex dependent. We showed that overall gut microbiota composition among individual perch significantly responded to food ration and predator presence. We found that species richness decreased with predator presence, and we identified 23 taxa from a diverse set of phyla that were over-represented when a predator was present. For example, Fusobacteria increased both at the lowest food ration and at predation stress conditions, suggesting that Fusobacteria are favored by stressful situations for the host. In concordance, both food ration and predation stress seemed to influence the metabolic repertoire of the gut microbiota, such as biosynthesis of other secondary metabolites, metabolism of cofactors, and vitamins. In addition, the identified interaction between food ration and sex emphasizes sex-specific responses to diet quantity in gut microbiota. Collectively, our findings emphasize an alternative state in gut microbiota with responses to changes in natural food webs depending on host sex. The obtained knowledge from this study provided us with an important perspective on gut microbiota in a food web context.

  14. 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.

  15. Dynamic complexities of a Holling II two-prey one-predator system with impulsive effect

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Song Xinyu; Li Yongfeng

    2007-01-01

    In this paper, we investigate the dynamic behaviors of a Holling II two-prey one-predator system with impulsive effect concerning biological control and chemical control strategies-periodic releasing natural enemies and spraying pesticide (or harvesting pests) at fixed time. By using the Floquet theory of linear periodic impulsive equation and small-amplitude perturbation we show that there exists a globally asymptotically stable two-prey eradication periodic solution when the impulsive period is less than some critical value. Further, we prove that the system is permanent if the impulsive period is larger than some critical value, and meanwhile the conditions for the extinction of one of the two prey and permanence of the remaining two species are given. Finally, numerical simulation shows that there exists a stable positive periodic solution with a maximum value no larger than a given level. Thus, we can use the stability of the positive periodic solution and its period to control insect pests at acceptably low levels

  16. Habitat characteristics of nesting areas and of predated nests in a Mediterranean population of the European pond turtle, Emys orbicularis galloitalica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marco A.L. Zuffi

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available one of the largest population of Emys orbicularis galloitalica of central Italy inhabits the canal system wet areas within a natural protected park. Features of nesting habitats, nest structure, and predation patterns of 209 nests of a large population of the European pond turtle are here presented and analysed. Nest sites were characterised by sunny bushy areas in strip habitat, digged along north-south oriented canals, on average with about 26% of the area covered by vegetation, less than one meter distant from 30 cm height bushes, at about 11 m from water and at about 13 m distance from wooded areas, 28 m away from a road. Principal Component and discriminant analyses were used on 20 selected variables in order to reduce the number of physical variables, and indicate that canal border, strip habitat, and canal orientation are grouping variables, that correctly classified 41.6%, 66.5%, and 100 % respectively of nest presence.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ghosh, Joydev; Sahoo, Banshidhar; Poria, Swarup

    2017-01-01

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

  18. 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...

  19. Oral ingestion of transgenic RIDL Ae. aegypti larvae has no negative effect on two predator Toxorhynchites species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oreenaiza Nordin

    Full Text Available Dengue is the most important mosquito-borne viral disease. No specific treatment or vaccine is currently available; traditional vector control methods can rarely achieve adequate control. Recently, the RIDL (Release of Insect carrying Dominant Lethality approach has been developed, based on the sterile insect technique, in which genetically engineered 'sterile' homozygous RIDL male insects are released to mate wild females; the offspring inherit a copy of the RIDL construct and die. A RIDL strain of the dengue mosquito, Aedes aegypti, OX513A, expresses a fluorescent marker gene for identification (DsRed2 and a protein (tTAV that causes the offspring to die. We examined whether these proteins could adversely affect predators that may feed on the insect. Aedes aegypti is a peri-domestic mosquito that typically breeds in small, rain-water-filled containers and has no specific predators. Toxorhynchites larvae feed on small aquatic organisms and are easily reared in the laboratory where they can be fed exclusively on mosquito larvae. To evaluate the effect of a predator feeding on a diet of RIDL insects, OX513A Ae. aegypti larvae were fed to two different species of Toxorhynchites (Tx. splendens and Tx. amboinensis and effects on life table parameters of all life stages were compared to being fed on wild type larvae. No significant negative effect was observed on any life table parameter studied; this outcome and the benign nature of the expressed proteins (tTAV and DsRed2 indicate that Ae. aegypti OX513A RIDL strain is unlikely to have any adverse effects on predators in the environment.

  20. 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.

  1. Evolution determines how global warming and pesticide exposure will shape predator-prey interactions with vector mosquitoes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tran, Tam T; Janssens, Lizanne; Dinh, Khuong V; Op de Beeck, Lin; Stoks, Robby

    2016-07-01

    How evolution may mitigate the effects of global warming and pesticide exposure on predator-prey interactions is directly relevant for vector control. Using a space-for-time substitution approach, we addressed how 4°C warming and exposure to the pesticide endosulfan shape the predation on Culex pipiens mosquitoes by damselfly predators from replicated low- and high-latitude populations. Although warming was only lethal for the mosquitoes, it reduced predation rates on these prey. Possibly, under warming escape speeds of the mosquitoes increased more than the attack efficiency of the predators. Endosulfan imposed mortality and induced behavioral changes (including increased filtering and thrashing and a positional shift away from the bottom) in mosquito larvae. Although the pesticide was only lethal for the mosquitoes, it reduced predation rates by the low-latitude predators. This can be explained by the combination of the evolution of a faster life history and associated higher vulnerabilities to the pesticide (in terms of growth rate and lowered foraging activity) in the low-latitude predators and pesticide-induced survival selection in the mosquitoes. Our results suggest that predation rates on mosquitoes at the high latitude will be reduced under warming unless predators evolve toward the current low-latitude phenotype or low-latitude predators move poleward.

  2. The effect of water level in a prey-predator interactions: A nonlinear analysis study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chiboub Fellah, N.; Bouguima, S.M.; Moussaoui, A.

    2012-01-01

    Highlights: ► A new model describing the interaction between predator and prey in Parloup Lake. ► Existence of periodic solution is proved. ► Seasonal variation in water level is an important factor for persitence. - Abstract: Water level may influence local community dynamics. We examine how seasonal variations in water level affect the outcome of prey-predator interactions in Parloup Lake in the south of France. We propose a new model to describe the annual cycle of persistence by using continuation theorem of coincidence degree.

  3. The dynamical complexity of a Ivlev-type prey-predator system with impulsive effect

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang Hailing; Wang Weiming

    2008-01-01

    Based on the classical predator-prey system with Ivlev-type functional response, an impulsive differential equations to model the process of periodic perturbations on the predator at different fixed time is established. It proves that there exists a locally asymptotically stable prey-eradication periodic solution when the impulse period is less than some critical value, and otherwise, the system can be permanent. Numerical results show that the system considered has more complicated dynamics. such as quasi-periodic oscillation, narrow periodic window, wide periodic window, chaotic bands, symmetry-breaking pitchfork bifurcation and crises, etc

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

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Klečka, Jan; Boukal S., David

    2014-01-01

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

  5. Multiple Stressors in a Top Predator Seabird: Potential Ecological Consequences of Environmental Contaminants, Population Health and Breeding Conditions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan O Bustnes

    Full Text Available Environmental contaminants may have impacts on reproduction and survival in wildlife populations suffering from multiple stressors. This study examined whether adverse effects of persistent organic pollutants (POPs increased with poor population health and breeding conditions in three colonies (60-74°N of great skua (Stercorarius skua in the north-eastern Atlantic (Shetland, Iceland and Bjørnøya [Bear Island]. POPs (organochlorines [OCs] and polybrominated diphenyl ethers [BDEs] were measured in plasma of incubating birds (n = 222, concentrations differing nearly tenfold among colonies: Bjørnøya (2009 > Bjørnøya (2010 > Iceland (2009 > Shetland (2009. Reproductive success (hatching success and chick survival showed that breeding conditions were favourable in Shetland and at Bjørnøya (2010, but were very poor in Iceland and at Bjørnøya (2009. Biomarkers indicated that health was poor in the Shetland population compared to the other populations. Females whose chicks hatched late had high POP concentrations in all colonies except at Bjørnøya (2010, and females losing their eggs at Bjørnøya (2009 tended to have higher concentrations than those hatching. Moreover, there was a negative relationship between female POP concentrations and chick body condition at hatching in Iceland and at Bjørnøya (2010. Supplementary feeding experiments were conducted, and in Iceland where feeding conditions were poor, significant negative relationships were found between female POP concentrations and daily growth-rate in first-hatched chicks of control nests, but not in food supplemented nests. This suggests that negative impacts of POPs were mitigated by improved feeding conditions. For second-chicks, there was a strong negative relationship between the female POP concentrations and growth-rate, but no effects of supplementary feeding. Lowered adult return-rate between breeding seasons with increasing POP loads were found both at Bjørnøya (2009 and

  6. Impact of conservation areas on trophic interactions between apex predators and herbivores on coral reefs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rizzari, Justin R; Bergseth, Brock J; Frisch, Ashley J

    2015-04-01

    Apex predators are declining at alarming rates due to exploitation by humans, but we have yet to fully discern the impacts of apex predator loss on ecosystem function. In a management context, it is critically important to clarify the role apex predators play in structuring populations of lower trophic levels. Thus, we examined the top-down influence of reef sharks (an apex predator on coral reefs) and mesopredators on large-bodied herbivores. We measured the abundance, size structure, and biomass of apex predators, mesopredators, and herbivores across fished, no-take, and no-entry management zones in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, Australia. Shark abundance and mesopredator size and biomass were higher in no-entry zones than in fished and no-take zones, which indicates the viability of strictly enforced human exclusion areas as tools for the conservation of predator communities. Changes in predator populations due to protection in no-entry zones did not have a discernible influence on the density, size, or biomass of different functional groups of herbivorous fishes. The lack of a relationship between predators and herbivores suggests that top-down forces may not play a strong role in regulating large-bodied herbivorous coral reef fish populations. Given this inconsistency with traditional ecological theories of trophic cascades, trophic structures on coral reefs may need to be reassessed to enable the establishment of appropriate and effective management regimes. © 2014 Society for Conservation Biology.

  7. The Effect of Conservation Tillage and Cover Crop Residue on Beneficial Arthropods and Weed Seed Predation in Acorn Squash.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quinn, N F; Brainard, D C; Szendrei, Z

    2016-12-01

    Conservation tillage combined with cover crops or mulching may enhance natural enemy activity in agroecosystems by reducing soil disturbance and increasing habitat structural complexity. In particular, weed seed predation can increase with vegetation cover and reduced tillage, indicating that mulches may improve the quality of the habitat for weed seed foraging. The purpose of this study was to quantify the effects of tillage and mulching for conservation biological control in cucurbit fields. The effects of mulch and reduced tillage on arthropods and rates of weed seed loss from arenas were examined in field trials on sandy soils in 2014 and 2015. Experimental factors included tillage and cover crop, each with two levels: strip-tillage or full-tillage, and cover crop mulch (rye residue) or no cover crop mulch (unmulched). Arthropod abundance on the crop foliage was not affected by tillage or cover crops. Contrary to expectations, epigeal natural enemies of insects and rates of weed seed removal either did not respond to treatments or were greater in full-tilled plots and plots without mulch. Our study demonstrates the potential importance of weed seed predators in reducing weed seedbanks in vegetable agroecosystems, and suggests that early-season tillage may not be detrimental to epigeal predator assemblages. © The Authors 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  8. 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.

  9. Effects of predation risk on site selection of barnacle geese during brood-rearing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stahl, J; Loonen, MJJE; Mehlum, F; Black, JM; Madsen, J

    1998-01-01

    Barnacle geese Branta leucopsis breed on small islands in the Kongsfjorden area, Spitsbergen. Shortly after hatching, families approach feeding sites at the mainland coast in the close surroundings of the village Ny-Alesund. The goslings are subject to predation by arctic foxes Alopex lagopus

  10. Greenland glacier retreat: Resource pulses and their effects on predators, prey and plants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gravesen, Eigil Vestergaard; Dreyer, Jamin

    consumed by all three predators, but most often by ground beetles and nearly equally across all patch types. Curiously aphid DNA was only detected in beetles and harvestmen from bare ground patches where aphid abundance was very low and there were no vascular plants for them to feed on. The explanation...

  11. Seed size and provenance mediate the joint effects of disturbance and seed predation on community assembly

    Science.gov (United States)

    John L. Maron; Dean E. Pearson; Teal Potter; Yvette K. Ortega

    2012-01-01

    Local plant community assembly is influenced by a series of filters that affect the recruitment and establishment of species. These filters include regional factors that limit seeds of any given species from reaching a local site as well as local interactions such as post-dispersal seed predation and disturbance, which dictate what species actually establish. How these...

  12. Predator-prey interaction reveals local effects of high-altitude insect migration

    Science.gov (United States)

    High-altitude nocturnal insect migrations represent significant pulses of resources, yet are difficult to study and poorly understood. Predator-prey interactions, specifically migratory moth consumption by high-flying bats, potentially reveal flows of migratory insects across a landscape. In North...

  13. Body condition and pregnancy in northern Yellowstone elk: evidence for predation risk effects?

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, P J; Garrott, Robert A; Hamlin, Kenneth L; Cook, Rachel C; Cook, John G; Cunningham, Julie A

    2011-01-01

    S. Creel et al. reported a negative correlation between fecal progesterone concentrations and elk:wolf ratios in greater Yellowstone elk (Cervus elaphus) herds and interpreted this correlation as evidence that pregnancy rates of elk decreased substantially in the presence of wolves (Canis lupus). Apparently, the hypothesized mechanism is that decreased forage intake reduces body condition and either results in elk failing to conceive during the autumn rut or elk losing the fetus during winter. We tested this hypothesis by comparing age-specific body condition (percentage ingesta-free body fat) and pregnancy rates for northern Yellowstone elk, one of the herds sampled by Creel et al., before (1962-1968) and after (2000-2006) wolf restoration using indices developed and calibrated for Rocky Mountain elk. Mean age-adjusted percentage body fat of female elk was similarly high in both periods (9.0%-0.9% pre-wolf; 8.9%-0.8% post-wolf). Estimated pregnancy rates (proportion of females that were pregnant) were 0.91 pre-wolf and 0.87 post-wolf for 4-9 year-old elk (95% CI on difference = -0.15 to 0.03, P = 0.46) and 0.64 pre-wolf and 0.78 post-wolf for elk > 9 years old (95% CI on difference = -0.01 to 0.27, P = 0.06). Thus, there was little evidence in these data to support strong effects of wolf presence on elk pregnancy. We caution that multiple lines of evidence and/or strong validation should be brought to bear before relying on indirect measures of how predators affect pregnancy rates.

  14. Reproductive Consequences of Nest Site Use in Fork-tailed Storm-Petrels in the Aleutian Islands, Alaska: Potential Lasting Effects of an Introduced Predator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brie A. Drummond

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available We examined the reproductive consequences of differential nest site use in Fork-tailed Storm-Petrels (Oceanodroma furcata in the Aleutian Islands, Alaska, where birds on islands where foxes were introduced nest in rocky substrate rather than in typical soil habitat. We investigated how physical and microclimatic nest site characteristics influenced storm-petrel breeding success 20 years after fox removal. We then examined whether those nest site characteristics that affected success were related to the amount of rock that composed the nest. In both years of our study, nest temperature had the strongest influence on chick survival and overall reproductive success, appearing in all the top models and alone explaining 14-35% of the variation in chick survival. The relationship between reproductive success and nest temperature was positive in both years, with higher survival in warmer nests. In turn, the best predictor of nest temperature was the amount of rock that composed the site. Rockier nests had colder average temperatures, which were driven by lower daily minimum temperatures, compared to nests with more soil. Thus, the rockiness of the nest site appeared to affect chick survival and overall reproductive success through its influence on nest temperature. This study suggests that the use of rocky nest sites, presumed to be a result of historic predation from introduced foxes, could decrease breeding success in this recovering population, and thus be a long-lasting effect of introduced predators.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julia Johnke

    2017-10-01

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

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. 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...

  1. Effect of stock size, climate, predation, and trophic status on recruitment of alewives in Lake Ontario, 1978-2000

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Gorman, Robert; Lantry, Brian F.; Schneider, Clifford P.

    2004-01-01

    The population of alewives Alosa pseudoharengus in Lake Ontario is of great concern to fishery managers because alewives are the principal prey of introduced salmonines and because alewives negatively influence many endemic fishes. We used spring bottom trawl catches of alewives to investigate the roles of stock size, climate, predation, and lake trophic status on recruitment of alewives to age 2 in Lake Ontario during 1978–2000. Climate was indexed from the temperature of water entering a south-shore municipal treatment plant, lake trophic status was indexed by the mean concentration of total phosphorus (TP) in surface water in spring, and predation was indexed by the product of the number of salmonines stocked and relative, first-year survival of Chinook salmonOncorhynchus tshawytscha. A Ricker-type parent–progeny model suggested that peak production of age-1 alewives could occur over a broad range of spawning stock sizes, and the fit of the model was improved most by the addition of terms for spring water temperature and winter duration. With the addition of the two climate terms, the Ricker model indicated that when water was relatively warm in spring and the winter was relatively short, peak potential production of young was nine times higher than when water temperature and winters were average, and 73 times higher than when water was cold in spring and winters were long. Relative survival from age 1 to recruitment at age 2 was best described by a multiple linear regression with terms for adult abundance, TP, and predation. Mean recruitment of age-2 fish in the 1978–1998 year-classes predicted by using the two models in sequence was only about 20% greater than the observed mean recruitment. Model estimates fit the measured data exceptionally well for all but the largest four year-classes, which suggests that the models will facilitate improvement in estimates of trophic transfer due to alewives.

  2. 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

  3. Population status of a cryptic top predator: an island-wide assessment of tigers in Sumatran rainforests.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hariyo T Wibisono

    Full Text Available Large carnivores living in tropical rainforests are under immense pressure from the rapid conversion of their habitat. In response, millions of dollars are spent on conserving these species. However, the cost-effectiveness of such investments is poorly understood and this is largely because the requisite population estimates are difficult to achieve at appropriate spatial scales for these secretive species. Here, we apply a robust detection/non-detection sampling technique to produce the first reliable population metric (occupancy for a critically endangered large carnivore; the Sumatran tiger (Panthera tigris sumatrae. From 2007-2009, seven landscapes were surveyed through 13,511 km of transects in 394 grid cells (17×17 km. Tiger sign was detected in 206 cells, producing a naive estimate of 0.52. However, after controlling for an unequal detection probability (where p = 0.13±0.017; ±S.E., the estimated tiger occupancy was 0.72±0.048. Whilst the Sumatra-wide survey results gives cause for optimism, a significant negative correlation between occupancy and recent deforestation was found. For example, the Northern Riau landscape had an average deforestation rate of 9.8%/yr and by far the lowest occupancy (0.33±0.055. Our results highlight the key tiger areas in need of protection and have led to one area (Leuser-Ulu Masen being upgraded as a 'global priority' for wild tiger conservation. However, Sumatra has one of the highest global deforestation rates and the two largest tiger landscapes identified in this study will become highly fragmented if their respective proposed roads networks are approved. Thus, it is vital that the Indonesian government tackles these threats, e.g. through improved land-use planning, if it is to succeed in meeting its ambitious National Tiger Recovery Plan targets of doubling the number of Sumatran tigers by 2022.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hongwei Liang

    2016-01-01

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

  5. Effects of elevated CO2 on predator avoidance behaviour by reef fishes is not altered by experimental test water

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philip L. Munday

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Pioneering studies into the effects of elevated CO2 on the behaviour of reef fishes often tested high-CO2 reared fish using control water in the test arena. While subsequent studies using rearing treatment water (control or high CO2 in the test arena have confirmed the effects of high CO2 on a range of reef fish behaviours, a further investigation into the use of different test water in the experimental arena is warranted. Here, we used a fully factorial design to test the effect of rearing treatment water (control or high CO2 and experimental test water (control or high CO2 on antipredator responses of larval reef fishes. We tested antipredator behaviour in larval clownfish Amphiprion percula and ambon damselfish Pomacentrus amboinensis, two species that have been used in previous high CO2 experiments. Specifically, we tested if: (1 using control or high CO2 water in a two channel flume influenced the response of larval clownfish to predator odour; and (2 using control or high CO2 water in the test arena influenced the escape response of larval damselfish to a startle stimulus. Finally, (3 because the effects of high CO2 on fish behaviour appear to be caused by altered function of the GABA-A neurotransmitter we tested if antipredator behaviours were restored in clownfish treated with a GABA antagonist (gabazine in high CO2 water. Larval clownfish reared from hatching in control water (496 µatm strongly avoided predator cue whereas larval clownfish reared from hatching in high CO2 (1,022 µatm were attracted to the predator cue, as has been reported in previous studies. There was no effect on fish responses of using either control or high CO2 water in the flume. Larval damselfish reared for four days in high CO2 (1,051 µatm exhibited a slower response to a startle stimulus and slower escape speed compared with fish reared in control conditions (464 µatm. There was no effect of test water on escape responses. Treatment of high-CO2 reared

  6. 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

  7. Compensatory Feeding Following a Predator Removal Program : Detection and Mechanisms, 1982-1996 Progress Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Petersen, James H.

    2002-02-28

    Predator removal is one of the oldest management tools in existence, with evidence that ancient Greeks used a bounty reward for wolves over 3,000 years ago (Anonymous 1964). Efforts to control predators on fish have been documented in scientific journals for at least 60 years (Eschmeyer 1937; Lagler 1939; Foerster and Ricker 1941; Smith and Swingle 1941; Jeppson and Platts 1959), and has likely been attempted for much longer. Complete eradication of a target species from a body of water has rarely been the objective of predator removal programs, which instead have attempted to eliminate predators from specific areas, to reduce the density or standing stock of predators, or to kill the largest individuals in the population (Meronek et al. 1996). In evaluating management programs that remove only part of a predator population, the compensatory response(s) of the remaining predators must be considered. Some potential compensatory responses by remaining individuals include increased reproductive output, increased growth rate, or increased consumption of certain prey species (Jude et al. 1987). If compensation by predators that remain in the system following a removal effort occurs, it may reduce the effectiveness of the predator control program. Northern pike-minnow Ptychocheilus oregonensis (formerly called northern squawfish) consume juvenile salmon in rivers, lakes, and reservoirs in British Columbia, Washington, Idaho, Oregon, and California. Northern pikeminnow have been estimated to consume about 11% of all juvenile salmon that migrate through John Day Reservoir on the Columbia River (Rieman et al. 1991). Modeling studies suggested that removal of 20% of the northern pikeminnow population in John Day Reservoir would result in a 50% decrease in predation-related mortality of juvenile salmon migrating through this reach (Beamesderfer et al. 1991). Since the early 1940's, other programs have been implemented to remove northern pikeminnow, with hopes of

  8. Population-level effects of abamectin, azadirachtin and fenpyroximate on the predatory mite Neoseiulus baraki.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lima, Debora B; Melo, José W S; Gondim, Manoel G C; Guedes, Raul N C; Oliveira, José E M

    2016-10-01

    The coconut production system, in which the coconut mite Aceria guerreronis is considered a key pest, provides an interesting model for integration of biological and chemical control. In Brazil, the most promising biological control agent for the coconut mite is the phytoseiid predator Neoseiulus baraki. However, acaricides are widely used to control the coconut mite, although they frequently produce unsatisfactory results. In this study, we evaluated the simultaneous direct effect of dry residue contact and contaminated prey ingestion of the main acaricides used on coconut palms (i.e., abamectin, azadirachtin and fenpyroximate) on life-history traits of N. baraki and their offspring. These acaricides are registered, recommended and widely used against A. guerreronis in Brazil, and they were tested at their label rates. The offspring of the exposed predators was also evaluated by estimating the instantaneous rate of population increase (r i ). Abamectin compromised female performance, whereas fenpyroximate did not affect the exposed females (F0). Nonetheless, fenpyroximate strongly compromised the offspring (F1) net reproductive rate (R0), intrinsic rate of population growth (r i ), and doubling time (DT). In contrast, fenpyroximate did not have such effects on the 2nd generation (F2) of predators with acaricide-exposed grandparents. Azadirachtin did not affect the predators, suggesting that this acaricide can be used in association with biological control by this predatory species. In contrast, the use of abamectin and fenpyroximate is likely to lead to adverse consequences in the biological control of A. guerreronis using N. baraki.

  9. Population Monitoring of Acropora palmata and its predator, Coralliophila abbreviata, in the upper Florida Keys 1998 to 2004

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This record refers to ongoing population surveys of corallivorous snail, C. abbreviata, and two of its coral hosts, Acropora palmata, and Montastraea spp at six reef...

  10. Can Camera Traps Monitor Komodo Dragons a Large Ectothermic Predator?

    OpenAIRE

    Ariefiandy, Achmad; Purwandana, Deni; Seno, Aganto; Ciofi, Claudio; Jessop, Tim S.

    2013-01-01

    Camera trapping has greatly enhanced population monitoring of often cryptic and low abundance apex carnivores. Effectiveness of passive infrared camera trapping, and ultimately population monitoring, relies on temperature mediated differences between the animal and its ambient environment to ensure good camera detection. In ectothermic predators such as large varanid lizards, this criterion is presumed less certain. Here we evaluated the effectiveness of camera trapping to potentially monitor...

  11. Hydrological disturbance diminishes predator control in wetlands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dorn, Nathan J; Cook, Mark I

    2015-11-01

    Effects of predators on prey populations can be especially strong in aquatic ecosystems, but disturbances may mediate the strength of predator limitation and even allow outbreaks of some prey populations. In a two-year study we investigated the numerical responses of crayfish (Procambarus fallax) and small fishes (Poeciliidae and Fundulidae) to a brief hydrological disturbance in replicated freshwater wetlands with an experimental drying and large predatory fish reduction. The experiment and an in situ predation assay tested the component of the consumer stress model positing that disturbances release prey from predator limitation. In the disturbed wetlands, abundances of large predatory fish were seasonally reduced, similar to dynamics in the Everglades (southern Florida). Densities of small fish were unaffected by the disturbance, but crayfish densities, which were similar across all wetlands before drying, increased almost threefold in the year after the disturbance. Upon re-flooding, juvenile crayfish survival was inversely related to the abundance of large fish across wetlands, but we found no evidence for enhanced algal food quality. At a larger landscape scale (500 km2 of the Everglades), crayfish densities over eight years were positively correlated with the severity of local dry disturbances (up to 99 days dry) during the preceding dry season. In contrast, densities of small-bodied fishes in the same wetlands were seasonally depressed by dry disturbances. The results from our experimental wetland drought and the observations of crayfish densities in the Everglades represent a large-scale example of prey population release following a hydrological disturbance in a freshwater ecosystem. The conditions producing crayfish pulses in the Everglades appear consistent with the mechanics of the consumer stress model, and we suggest crayfish pulses may influence the number of nesting wading birds in the Everglades.

  12. Predator attack rate evolution in space: the role of ecology mediated by complex emergent spatial structure and self-shading.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Messinger, Susanna M; Ostling, Annette

    2013-11-01

    Predation interactions are an important element of ecological communities. Population spatial structure has been shown to influence predator evolution, resulting in the evolution of a reduced predator attack rate; however, the evolutionary role of traits governing predator and prey ecology is unknown. The evolutionary effect of spatial structure on a predator's attack rate has primarily been explored assuming a fixed metapopulation spatial structure, and understood in terms of group selection. But endogenously generated, emergent spatial structure is common in nature. Furthermore, the evolutionary influence of ecological traits may be mediated through the spatial self-structuring process. Drawing from theory on pathogens, the evolutionary effect of emergent spatial structure can be understood in terms of self-shading, where a voracious predator limits its long-term invasion potential by reducing local prey availability. Here we formalize the effects of self-shading for predators using spatial moment equations. Then, through simulations, we show that in a spatial context self-shading leads to relationships between predator-prey ecology and the predator's attack rate that are not expected in a non-spatial context. Some relationships are analogous to relationships already shown for host-pathogen interactions, but others represent new trait dimensions. Finally, since understanding the effects of ecology using existing self-shading theory requires simplifications of the emergent spatial structure that do not apply well here, we also develop metrics describing the complex spatial structure of the predator and prey populations to help us explain the evolutionary effect of predator and prey ecology in the context of self-shading. The identification of these metrics may provide a step towards expansion of the predictive domain of self-shading theory to more complex spatial dynamics. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. 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.

  14. Context Dependent Effect of Landscape on the Occurrence of an Apex Predator across Different Climate Regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujita, Go; Azuma, Atsuki; Nonaka, Jun; Sakai, Yoshiaki; Sakai, Hatsumi; Iseki, Fumitaka; Itaya, Hiroo; Fukasawa, Keita; Miyashita, Tadashi

    2016-01-01

    In studies of habitat suitability at landscape scales, transferability of species-landscape associations among sites are likely to be critical because it is often impractical to collect datasets across various regions. However, limiting factors, such as prey availability, are not likely to be constant across scales because of the differences in species pools. This is particularly true for top predators that are often the target for conservation concern. Here we focus on gray-faced buzzards, apex predators of farmland-dominated landscapes in East Asia. We investigated context dependency of "buzzard-landscape relationship", using nest location datasets from five sites, each differing in landscape composition. Based on the similarities of prey items and landscape compositions across the sites, we determined several alternative ways of grouping the sites, and then examined whether buzzard-landscape relationship change among groups, which was conducted separately for each way of grouping. As a result, the model of study-sites grouping based on similarities in prey items showed the smallest ΔAICc. Because the terms of interaction between group IDs and areas of broad-leaved forests and grasslands were selected, buzzard-landscape relationship showed a context dependency, i.e., these two landscape elements strengthen the relationship in southern region. The difference in prey fauna, which is associated with the difference in climate, might generate regional differences in the buzzard-landscape associations.

  15. Context Dependent Effect of Landscape on the Occurrence of an Apex Predator across Different Climate Regions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Go Fujita

    Full Text Available In studies of habitat suitability at landscape scales, transferability of species-landscape associations among sites are likely to be critical because it is often impractical to collect datasets across various regions. However, limiting factors, such as prey availability, are not likely to be constant across scales because of the differences in species pools. This is particularly true for top predators that are often the target for conservation concern. Here we focus on gray-faced buzzards, apex predators of farmland-dominated landscapes in East Asia. We investigated context dependency of "buzzard-landscape relationship", using nest location datasets from five sites, each differing in landscape composition. Based on the similarities of prey items and landscape compositions across the sites, we determined several alternative ways of grouping the sites, and then examined whether buzzard-landscape relationship change among groups, which was conducted separately for each way of grouping. As a result, the model of study-sites grouping based on similarities in prey items showed the smallest ΔAICc. Because the terms of interaction between group IDs and areas of broad-leaved forests and grasslands were selected, buzzard-landscape relationship showed a context dependency, i.e., these two landscape elements strengthen the relationship in southern region. The difference in prey fauna, which is associated with the difference in climate, might generate regional differences in the buzzard-landscape associations.

  16. World without borders-genetic population structure of a highly migratory marine predator, the blue shark (Prionace glauca).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veríssimo, Ana; Sampaio, Íris; McDowell, Jan R; Alexandrino, Paulo; Mucientes, Gonzalo; Queiroz, Nuno; da Silva, Charlene; Jones, Catherine S; Noble, Leslie R

    2017-07-01

    Highly migratory, cosmopolitan oceanic sharks often exhibit complex movement patterns influenced by ontogeny, reproduction, and feeding. These elusive species are particularly challenging to population genetic studies, as representative samples suitable for inferring genetic structure are difficult to obtain. Our study provides insights into the genetic population structure one of the most abundant and wide-ranging oceanic shark species, the blue shark Prionace glauca, by sampling the least mobile component of the populations, i.e., young-of-year and small juveniles (<2 year; N  = 348 individuals), at three reported nursery areas, namely, western Iberia, Azores, and South Africa. Samples were collected in two different time periods (2002-2008 and 2012-2015) and were screened at 12 nuclear microsatellites and at a 899-bp fragment of the mitochondrial control region. Our results show temporally stable genetic homogeneity among the three Atlantic nurseries at both nuclear and mitochondrial markers, suggesting basin-wide panmixia. In addition, comparison of mtDNA CR sequences from Atlantic and Indo-Pacific locations also indicated genetic homogeneity and unrestricted female-mediated gene flow between ocean basins. These results are discussed in light of the species' life history and ecology, but suggest that blue shark populations may be connected by gene flow at the global scale. The implications of the present findings to the management of this important fisheries resource are also discussed.

  17. 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

  18. 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...

  19. 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.

  20. Odorous and non-fatal skin secretion of adult wrinkled frog (Rana rugosa is effective in avoiding predation by snakes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuri Yoshimura

    Full Text Available The roles played by nonfatal secretions of adult anurans in the avoidance of predation remain unknown. The adult Wrinkled frog (Rana rugosa has warty skin with the odorous mucus secretion that is not fatal to the snake Elaphe quadrivirgata. We fed R. rugosa or Fejervarya limnocharis, which resembles R. rugosa in appearance and has mucus secretion, to snakes and compared the snakes' responses to the frogs. Compared to F. limnocharis, R. rugosa was less frequently bitten or swallowed by snakes. The snakes that bit R. rugosa spat out the frogs and showed mouth opening (gaping behavior, while the snakes that bit F. limnocharis did not show gaping behavior. We also compared the responses of the snakes to R. rugosa and F. limnocharis secretions. We coated palatable R. japonica with secretions from R. rugosa or F. limnocharis. The frogs coated by R. rugosa secretion were less frequently bitten or swallowed than those coated by F. limnocharis secretion. We concluded that compared to different frog species of similar sizes, the adult R. rugosa was less frequently preyed upon by, and that its skin secretion was effective in avoiding predation by snakes.

  1. Odorous and non-fatal skin secretion of adult wrinkled frog (Rana rugosa) is effective in avoiding predation by snakes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoshimura, Yuri; Kasuya, Eiiti

    2013-01-01

    The roles played by nonfatal secretions of adult anurans in the avoidance of predation remain unknown. The adult Wrinkled frog (Rana rugosa) has warty skin with the odorous mucus secretion that is not fatal to the snake Elaphe quadrivirgata. We fed R. rugosa or Fejervarya limnocharis, which resembles R. rugosa in appearance and has mucus secretion, to snakes and compared the snakes' responses to the frogs. Compared to F. limnocharis, R. rugosa was less frequently bitten or swallowed by snakes. The snakes that bit R. rugosa spat out the frogs and showed mouth opening (gaping) behavior, while the snakes that bit F. limnocharis did not show gaping behavior. We also compared the responses of the snakes to R. rugosa and F. limnocharis secretions. We coated palatable R. japonica with secretions from R. rugosa or F. limnocharis. The frogs coated by R. rugosa secretion were less frequently bitten or swallowed than those coated by F. limnocharis secretion. We concluded that compared to different frog species of similar sizes, the adult R. rugosa was less frequently preyed upon by, and that its skin secretion was effective in avoiding predation by snakes.

  2. 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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  4. 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

    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.

  5. 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

  6. The effect of chrysanthemum leaf trichome density and prey spatial distribution on predation of Tetranychus urticae (Acari: Tetranychidae) by Phytoseiulus persimilis (Acari: Phytoseiidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skirvin, D J; Stavrinides, M C; Skirvin, D J

    2003-08-01

    The effect of plant architecture, in terms of leaf hairiness, and prey spatial arrangement, on predation rate of eggs of the spider mite, Tetranychus urticae Koch, by the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis Athias-Henriot was examined on cut stems of chrysanthemums. Three levels of leaf hairiness (trichome density) were obtained using two different chrysanthemum cultivars and two ages within one of the cultivars. The number of prey consumed by P. persimilis was inversely related to trichome density. At low prey densities (less than ten eggs per stem), prey consumption did not differ in a biologically meaningful way between treatments. The effect of prey spatial arrangement on the predation rate of P. persimilis was also examined. Predation rates were higher in prey patches on leaves adjacent to the release point of P. persimilis, but significantly greater numbers of prey were consumed in higher density prey patches compared to low density patches. The predators exhibited non-random searching behaviour, spending more time on leaves closest to the release point. The implications of these findings for biological control and predator-prey dynamics are discussed.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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).

  8. Testing the effects of perimeter fencing and elephant exclosures on lion predation patterns in a Kenyan wildlife conservancy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dupuis-Desormeaux, Marc; Davidson, Zeke; Pratt, Laura; Mwololo, Mary; MacDonald, Suzanne E

    2016-01-01

    The use of fences to segregate wildlife can change predator and prey behaviour. Predators can learn to incorporate fencing into their hunting strategies and prey can learn to avoid foraging near fences. A twelve-strand electric predator-proof fence surrounds our study site. There are also porous one-strand electric fences used to create exclosures where elephant (and giraffe) cannot enter in order to protect blocs of browse vegetation for two critically endangered species, the black rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis) and the Grevy's zebra (Equus grevyi). The denser vegetation in these exclosures attracts both browsing prey and ambush predators. In this study we examined if lion predation patterns differed near the perimeter fencing and inside the elephant exclosures by mapping the location of kills. We used a spatial analysis to compare the predation patterns near the perimeter fencing and inside the exclosures to predation in the rest of the conservancy. Predation was not over-represented near the perimeter fence but the pattern of predation near the fence suggests that fences may be a contributing factor to predation success. Overall, we found that predation was over-represented inside and within 50 m of the exclosures. However, by examining individual exclosures in greater detail using a hot spot analysis, we found that only a few exclosures contained lion predation hot spots. Although some exclosures provide good hunting grounds for lions, we concluded that exclosures did not necessarily create prey-traps per se and that managers could continue to use this type of exclusionary fencing to protect stands of dense vegetation.

  9. Testing the effects of perimeter fencing and elephant exclosures on lion predation patterns in a Kenyan wildlife conservancy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marc Dupuis-Desormeaux

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The use of fences to segregate wildlife can change predator and prey behaviour. Predators can learn to incorporate fencing into their hunting strategies and prey can learn to avoid foraging near fences. A twelve-strand electric predator-proof fence surrounds our study site. There are also porous one-strand electric fences used to create exclosures where elephant (and giraffe cannot enter in order to protect blocs of browse vegetation for two critically endangered species, the black rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis and the Grevy’s zebra (Equus grevyi. The denser vegetation in these exclosures attracts both browsing prey and ambush predators. In this study we examined if lion predation patterns differed near the perimeter fencing and inside the elephant exclosures by mapping the location of kills. We used a spatial analysis to compare the predation patterns near the perimeter fencing and inside the exclosures to predation in the rest of the conservancy. Predation was not over-represented near the perimeter fence but the pattern of predation near the fence suggests that fences may be a contributing factor to predation success. Overall, we found that predation was over-represented inside and within 50 m of the exclosures. However, by examining individual exclosures in greater detail using a hot spot analysis, we found that only a few exclosures contained lion predation hot spots. Although some exclosures provide good hunting grounds for lions, we concluded that exclosures did not necessarily create prey-traps per se and that managers could continue to use this type of exclusionary fencing to protect stands of dense vegetation.

  10. 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 ...

  11. Enhanced susceptibility to predation in corals of compromised condition

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    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. 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.

  13. Intraguild predation by shore crabs affects mortality, behavior, growth, and densities of California horn snails

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorda, J.; Hechinger, R.F.; Cooper, S. D.; Kuris, A. M.; Lafferty, Kevin D.

    2016-01-01

    The California horn snail, Cerithideopsis californica, and the shore crabs, Pachygrapsus crassipesand Hemigrapsus oregonensis, compete for epibenthic microalgae, but the crabs also eat snails. Such intraguild predation is common in nature, despite models predicting instability. Using a series of manipulations and field surveys, we examined intraguild predation from several angles, including the effects of stage-dependent predation along with direct consumptive and nonconsumptive predator effects on intraguild prey. In the laboratory, we found that crabs fed on macroalgae, snail eggs, and snails, and the size of consumed snails increased with predator crab size. In field experiments, snails grew less in the presence of crabs partially because snails behaved differently and were buried in the sediment (nonconsumptive effects). Consistent with these results, crab and snail abundances were negatively correlated in three field surveys conducted at three different spatial scales in estuaries of California, Baja California, and Baja California Sur: (1) among 61 sites spanning multiple habitat types in three estuaries, (2) among the habitats of 13 estuaries, and (3) among 34 tidal creek sites in one estuary. These results indicate that shore crabs are intraguild predators on California horn snails that affect snail populations via predation and by influencing snail behavior and performance.

  14. Behaviour and physiology shape the growth accelerations associated with predation risk, high temperatures and southern latitudes in Ischnura damselfly larvae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoks, Robby; Swillen, Ine; De Block, Marjan

    2012-09-01

    1. To better predict effects of climate change and predation risk on prey animals and ecosystems, we need studies documenting not only latitudinal patterns in growth rate but also growth plasticity to temperature and predation risk and the underlying proximate mechanisms: behaviour (food intake) and digestive physiology (growth efficiency). The mechanistic underpinnings of predator-induced growth increases remain especially poorly understood. 2. We reared larvae from replicated northern and southern populations of the damselfly Ischnura elegans in a common garden experiment manipulating temperature and predation risk and quantified growth rate, food intake and growth efficiency. 3. The predator-induced and temperature-induced growth accelerations were the same at both latitudes, despite considerably faster growth rates in the southern populations. While the higher growth rates in the southern populations and the high rearing temperature were driven by both an increased food intake and a higher growth efficiency, the higher growth rates under predation risk were completely driven by a higher growth efficiency, despite a lowered food intake. 4. The emerging pattern that higher growth rates associated with latitude, temperature and predation risk were all (partly or completely) mediated by a higher growth efficiency has two major implications. First, it indicates that energy allocation trade-offs and the associated physiological costs play a major role both in shaping large-scale geographic variation in growth rates and in shaping the extent and direction of growth rate plasticity. Secondly, it suggests that the efficiency of energy transfer in aquatic food chains, where damselfly larvae are important intermediate predators, will be higher in southern populations, at higher temperatures and under predation risk. This may eventually contribute to the lengthening of food chains under these conditions and highlights that the prey identity may determine the influence of

  15. Study of dynamical properties in a bi-dimensional model describing the prey–predator dynamics with strong Allee effect in prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Partha Mandal

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available In this work, we analyze a bi-dimensional differential equation system obtained by considering Holling type II functional response in prey–predator model with strong Allee effect in prey. One of the important consequence of this modification is the existence of separatrix curve which divides the behaviour of the trajectories in the phase plane. The results show that the origin is an attractor for any set of parameter values. Axial equilibrium points are stable or unstable according to the different parametric restrictions. The unique positive equilibrium point, if it exists, can be either an attractor or a repeller surrounded by a limit cycle, whose stability and uniqueness are also established. Therefore long-term coexistence of both populations is possible or they can go to extinction. Conditions on the parameter values are derived to show that the positive equilibrium point can be emerged or annihilated through transcritical bifurcation at axial equilibrium points. The existence of two heteroclinic curves is also established. It is also demonstrated that the origin is a global attractor in the phase plane for some parameter values, which implies that there are satisfying conditions where both populations can go to extinction. Ecological interpretations of all analytical results are provided thoroughly.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. Predation rate by wolves on the Porcupine caribou herd

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert D. Hayes

    2000-04-01

    Full Text Available 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. In our model we assumed that wolves killed adult caribou at a constant rate (Kdaily, 0.08 caribou wolf1 day1 based on our studies and elsewhere; that wolf density (W doubled to 6 wolves 1000 km2-1 on all seasonal ranges; and that the average area occupied by the Porcupine caribou herd (PCH in eight seasonal life cycle periods (Dp was two times gteater than the area described by the outer boundaries of telemetry data (Ap /1000 km2. Results from our model projected that wolves kill about 7600 adult caribou each year, regardless of herd size. The model estimated that wolves removed 5.8 to 7.4% of adult caribou as the herd declined in the 1990s. Our predation rate model supports the hypothesis of Bergerud that spacing away by caribou is an effective anti-predatory strategy that greatly reduces wolf predation on adult caribou in the spring and summer.

  20. 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.

  1. Effect of female weight on reproductive potential of the predator Brontocoris tabidus (Signoret, 1852 (Heteroptera: Pentatomidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isaias Oliveira

    2005-03-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this work was to determine the fecundity of the predator Brontocoris tabidus (Signoret (Heteroptera: Pentatomidae females of two weight classes aiming to define, which one presented higher productivity in the laboratory. Males and females of B. tabidus were reared from nymphs fed with Tenebrio molitor L. (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae pupae in laboratory. Females of B. tabidus weighting 95 to 150 mg and those with 160 to 220 mg constituted two treatments. Oviposition period and numbers of egg masses, eggs and nymphs per female of B. tabidus were higher in the treatment with heavier females, while the periods of preoviposition, between egg mass laying, egg incubation and number of eggs per egg mass, besides the percentage of nymphs hatched and adult longevity were similar between treatments. Heavier females of B. tabidus presented better productivity and for this reason they should be used in programs of mass rearing this predator.Este trabalho apresenta a fecundidade de fêmeas do predador Brontocoris tabidus (Signoret (Heteroptera: Pentatomidae de duas classes de peso, objetivando avaliar qual delas apresenta melhor produtividade em criações mantidas em laboratório. Machos e fêmeas foram alimentadas, desde o estádio ninfal, com pupas do besouro Tenebrio molitor L. (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae. Fêmeas de B. tabidus pesando entre 95 e 150 mg e entre 160 e 220 mg constituíram as duas classes de peso. O período de oviposição e os números de posturas, de ovos e ninfas por fêmea de B. tabidus foram maiores naquelas fêmeas pertencentes à classe mais pesada, enquanto os períodos de pré-oviposição, entre posturas, incubação dos ovos e número de ovos por postura, bem como a percentagem de eclosão de ninfas e a longevidade dos adultos foram semelhantes entre ambas as classes de peso. Fêmeas mais pesadas de B. tabidus apresentaram maior número de ovos por fêmea e por esta razão devem ser utilizadas em programas de cria

  2. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  4. Effects of kinship or familiarity? Small thrips larvae experience lower predation risk only in groups of mixed-size siblings

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Bruijn, P.J.A.; Sabelis, M.W.; Egas, M.

    2014-01-01

    In many species of insects, larvae are distributed in an aggregated fashion. As they may differ in size and size matters to predation risk, small larvae may be less likely to fall prey to predators when near large and therefore better-defended larvae. We hypothesize that the small larvae may profit

  5. Community regulation: the relative importance of recruitment and predation intensity of an intertidal community dominant in a seascape context.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rilov, Gil; Schiel, David R

    2011-01-01

    Predicting the strength and context-dependency of species interactions across multiple scales is a core area in ecology. This is especially challenging in the marine environment, where populations of most predators and prey are generally open, because of their pelagic larval phase, and recruitment of both is highly variable. In this study we use a comparative-experimental approach on small and large spatial scales to test the relationship between predation intensity and prey recruitment and their relative importance in shaping populations of a dominant rocky intertidal space occupier, mussels, in the context of seascape (availability of nearby subtidal reef habitat). Predation intensity on transplanted mussels was tested inside and outside cages and recruitment was measured with standard larval settlement collectors. We found that on intertidal rocky benches with contiguous subtidal reefs in New Zealand, mussel larval recruitment is usually low but predation on recruits by subtidal consumers (fish, crabs) is intense during high tide. On nearby intertidal rocky benches with adjacent sandy subtidal habitats, larval recruitment is usually greater but subtidal predators are typically rare and predation is weaker. Multiple regression analysis showed that predation intensity accounts for most of the variability in the abundance of adult mussels compared to recruitment. This seascape-dependent, predation-recruitment relationship could scale up to explain regional community variability. We argue that community ecology models should include seascape context-dependency and its effects on recruitment and species interactions for better predictions of coastal community dynamics and structure.

  6. Community regulation: the relative importance of recruitment and predation intensity of an intertidal community dominant in a seascape context.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gil Rilov

    Full Text Available Predicting the strength and context-dependency of species interactions across multiple scales is a core area in ecology. This is especially challenging in the marine environment, where populations of most predators and prey are generally open, because of their pelagic larval phase, and recruitment of both is highly variable. In this study we use a comparative-experimental approach on small and large spatial scales to test the relationship between predation intensity and prey recruitment and their relative importance in shaping populations of a dominant rocky intertidal space occupier, mussels, in the context of seascape (availability of nearby subtidal reef habitat. Predation intensity on transplanted mussels was tested inside and outside cages and recruitment was measured with standard larval settlement collectors. We found that on intertidal rocky benches with contiguous subtidal reefs in New Zealand, mussel larval recruitment is usually low but predation on recruits by subtidal consumers (fish, crabs is intense during high tide. On nearby intertidal rocky benches with adjacent sandy subtidal habitats, larval recruitment is usually greater but subtidal predators are typically rare and predation is weaker. Multiple regression analysis showed that predation intensity accounts for most of the variability in the abundance of adult mussels compared to recruitment. This seascape-dependent, predation-recruitment relationship could scale up to explain regional community variability. We argue that community ecology models should include seascape context-dependency and its effects on recruitment and species interactions for better predictions of coastal community dynamics and structure.

  7. Effect of food on immature development, consumption rate, and relative growth rate of Toxorhynchites splendens (Diptera: Culicidae, a predator of container breeding mosquitoes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D Dominic Amalraj

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available Food utilization by the larvae of Toxorhynchites splendens (Wiedemann was studied in the laboratory by offering larvae of Aedes aegypti Linnaeus, Anopheles stephensi (Liston, and Culex quinquefasciatus (Say. Quantitative analyses of data indicated that immature development was significantly faster with increase in food availability. The regression analysis showed that the degrees of the relationship between immature duration (Id and food availability were higher when offered early instars of prey (first and second instars than late instars. Consumption rate (Cr of the predator increased with increase in food availability and this relationship was highly significant when larvae of An. stephensi were offered as food. Consumption rate to food level decreased with increase in the age class of the prey. There was a significant negative correlation between Id and Cr. This aspect helps to increase population turnover of T. splendens in a shorter period when the prey is abundant. Conversely, the predator compensated the loss in daily food intake at low food level by extending Id thereby attains the minimum threshold pupal weight for adult emergence. There was an increase in the relative growth rate (RGR of the predator when An. stephensi was offered as prey and this was related to the high protein content of the prey per body weight. There was a positive correlation between Cr and RGR. This adaptive life characteristic strategy of this predator is useful for mass-rearing for large scale field release programmes in the control of container breeding mosquitoes is discussed.

  8. 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.

  9. Escape Behavior and Predation Risk of Mainland and Island Spiny-tailed Iguanas (Ctenosaura hemilopha)

    OpenAIRE

    Blázquez, M.C.; Rodríguez-Estrella, Ricardo; Delibes, M.

    1997-01-01

    We investigated the relationships between predator avoidance behavior and predation risk by comparing the wariness of iguanas (Ctenosaura hemilopha) belonging to an island population with few predators with that of iguanas belonging to a mainland population under high predation pressure. We predicted that island iguanas would be less wary than mainland ones. Island iguanas allowed the closer approach of potential predators before their first reaction and fleeing. The responses of both sexes d...

  10. Effect of insecticides and Plutella xylostella (Lepidoptera: Plutellidae) genotype on a predator and parasitoid and implications for the evolution of insecticide resistance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Xiaoxia; Chen, Mao; Collins, Hilda L; Onstad, David; Roush, Rick; Zhang, Qingwen; Shelton, Anthony M

    2012-04-01

    In the laboratory and in cages in the greenhouse, we evaluated the toxicity of two insecticides (lambda-cyhalothrin and spinosad) on the parasitoid, Diadegma insulare (Cresson), and the predator, Coleomegilla maculate (DeGeer), both natural enemies of the diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella (L.). Lambda-cyhalothrin was very toxic to both natural enemies. Spinosad was less toxic to C. maculata adults and larvae, and slightly toxic to D. insulare. Both natural enemies suppressed P. xylostella populations in cages with 80% spinosad-treated and 20% nontreated plants; such suppression was not seen when lambda-cyhalothrin was used. Using broccoli, Brassica oleracea L. variety italica, a common host for P. xylostella, we also studied direct and indirect effects of both natural enemies in the presence and absence of the two insecticides and to different P. xylostella genotypes: resistant to the insecticide, susceptible, or heterozygous. Neither natural enemy could distinguish host genotype if P. xylostella were feeding on nontreated plants. They could also not distinguish between larvae feeding on spinosad-treated plants and nontreated plants, but D. insulare could distinguish between larvae feeding on lambda-cyhalothrin treated and nontreated plants. Our studies suggest that lambda-cyhalothrin has direct toxicity to these two natural enemies, can affect their host foraging and acceptance of P. xylostella and consequently would not be compatible in conserving these natural enemies in a program for suppression of P. xylostella. In contrast, our studies suggest that treatment with spinosad has much less effect on these natural enemies and would allow them to help suppress populations of P. xylostella. These findings are discussed in relation to the evolution of insecticide resistance and suppression of the pest populations.

  11. Is it safe to nest near conspicuous neighbours? Spatial patterns in predation risk associated with the density of American Golden-Plover nests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marie-Andrée Giroux

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Predation is one of the main factors explaining nesting mortality in most bird species. Birds can avoid nest predation or reduce predation pressure by breeding at higher latitude, showing anti-predator behaviour, selecting nest sites protected from predators, and nesting in association with protective species. American Golden-Plovers (Pluvialis dominica defend their territory by using various warning and distraction behaviours displayed at varying levels of intensity (hereafter “conspicuous behaviour”, as well as more aggressive behaviours such as aerial attacks, but only in some populations. Such antipredator behaviour has the potential to repel predators and thus benefit the neighbouring nests by decreasing their predation risk. Yet, conspicuous behaviour could also attract predators by signalling the presence of a nest. To test for the existence of a protective effect associated with the conspicuous antipredator behaviour of American Golden-Plovers, we studied the influence of proximity to plover nests on predation risk of artificial nests on Igloolik Island (Nunavut, Canada in July 2014. We predicted that the predation risk of artificial nests would decrease with proximity to and density of plover nests. We monitored 18 plover nests and set 35 artificial nests at 30, 50, 100, 200, and 500 m from seven of those plover nests. We found that the predation risk of artificial nests increases with the density of active plover nests. We also found a significant negative effect of the distance to the nearest active protector nest on predation risk of artificial nests. Understanding how the composition and structure of shorebird communities generate spatial patterns in predation risks represents a key step to better understand the importance of these species of conservation concern in tundra food webs.

  12. Is it safe to nest near conspicuous neighbours? Spatial patterns in predation risk associated with the density of American Golden-Plover nests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giroux, Marie-Andrée; Trottier-Paquet, Myriam; Bêty, Joël; Lamarre, Vincent; Lecomte, Nicolas

    2016-01-01

    Predation is one of the main factors explaining nesting mortality in most bird species. Birds can avoid nest predation or reduce predation pressure by breeding at higher latitude, showing anti-predator behaviour, selecting nest sites protected from predators, and nesting in association with protective species. American Golden-Plovers (Pluvialis dominica) defend their territory by using various warning and distraction behaviours displayed at varying levels of intensity (hereafter "conspicuous behaviour"), as well as more aggressive behaviours such as aerial attacks, but only in some populations. Such antipredator behaviour has the potential to repel predators and thus benefit the neighbouring nests by decreasing their predation risk. Yet, conspicuous behaviour could also attract predators by signalling the presence of a nest. To test for the existence of a protective effect associated with the conspicuous antipredator behaviour of American Golden-Plovers, we studied the influence of proximity to plover nests on predation risk of artificial nests on Igloolik Island (Nunavut, Canada) in July 2014. We predicted that the predation risk of artificial nests would decrease with proximity to and density of plover nests. We monitored 18 plover nests and set 35 artificial nests at 30, 50, 100, 200, and 500 m from seven of those plover nests. We found that the predation risk of artificial nests increases with the density of active plover nests. We also found a significant negative effect of the distance to the nearest active protector nest on predation risk of artificial nests. Understanding how the composition and structure of shorebird communities generate spatial patterns in predation risks represents a key step to better understand the importance of these species of conservation concern in tundra food webs.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. The effect of predator exposure and reproduction on oxidative stress parameters in the Catarina scallop Argopecten ventricosus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerra, C; Zenteno-Savín, T; Maeda-Martínez, A N; Abele, D; Philipp, E E R

    2013-05-01

    Predation is known to impact growth and reproduction, and the physiological state of the prey, including its susceptibility to oxidative stress. In this study, we investigated how prolonged exposure to predators modulates tissue specific antioxidant defense and oxidative damage in the short-lived epibenthic scallop Argopecten ventricosus (2years maximum lifespan). Scallops that were experimentally exposed to predators had not only lower antioxidant capacities (superoxide dismutase and catalase), but also lower oxidative damage (protein carbonyls and TBARS=thiobarbituric acid reactive substances including lipid peroxides) in gills and mantle compared to individuals not exposed to predators. In contrast, oxidative damage in the swimming muscle was higher in predator-exposed scallops. When predator-exposed scallops were on the verge of spawning, levels of oxidative damage increased in gills and mantle in spite of a parallel increase in antioxidant defense in both tissues. Levels of oxidative damage increased also in the swimming muscle whereas muscle antioxidant capacities decreased. Interestingly, post-spawned scallops restored antioxidant capacities and oxidative damage to immature levels, suggesting they can recover from spawning-related oxidative stress. Our results show that predator exposure and gametogenesis modulate oxidative damage in a tissue specific manner and that high antioxidant capacities do not necessarily coincide with low oxidative damage. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Sport hunting, predator control and conservation of large carnivores.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Craig Packer

    Full Text Available Sport hunting has provided important economic incentives for conserving large predators since the early 1970's, but wildlife managers also face substantial pressure to reduce depredation. Sport hunting is an inherently risky strategy for controlling predators as carnivore populations are difficult to monitor and some species show a propensity for infanticide that is exacerbated by removing adult males. Simulation models predict population declines from even moderate levels of hunting in infanticidal species, and harvest data suggest that African countries and U.S. states with the highest intensity of sport hunting have shown the steepest population declines in African lions and cougars over the past 25 yrs. Similar effects in African leopards may have been masked by mesopredator release owing to declines in sympatric lion populations, whereas there is no evidence of overhunting in non-infanticidal populations of American black bears. Effective conservation of these animals will require new harvest strategies and improved monitoring to counter demands for predator control by livestock producers and local communities.

  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. Costly plastic morphological responses to predator specific odour cues in three-spined sticklebacks (Gasterosteus aculeatus)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Frommen, Joachim G.; Herder, Fabian; Engqvist, Leif; Mehlis, Marion; Bakker, Theo C. M.; Schwarzer, Julia; Thuenken, Timo

    Predation risk is one of the major forces affecting phenotypic variation among and within animal populations. While fixed anti-predator morphologies are favoured when predation level is consistently high, plastic morphological responses are advantageous when predation risk is changing temporarily,

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  20. 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.

  1. Predators and the public trust.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-02-01

    Many democratic governments recognize a duty to conserve environmental resources, including wild animals, as a public trust for current and future citizens. These public trust principles have informed two centuries of U.S.A. Supreme Court decisions and environmental laws worldwide. Nevertheless numerous populations of large-bodied, mammalian carnivores (predators) were eradicated in the 20th century. Environmental movements and strict legal protections have fostered predator recoveries across the U.S.A. and Europe since the 1970s. Now subnational jurisdictions are regaining management authority from central governments for their predator subpopulations. Will the history of local eradication repeat or will these jurisdictions adopt public trust thinking and their obligation to broad public interests over narrower ones? We review the role of public trust principles in the restoration and preservation of controversial species. In so doing we argue for the essential roles of scientists from many disciplines concerned with biological diversity and its conservation. We look beyond species endangerment to future generations' interests in sustainability, particularly non-consumptive uses. Although our conclusions apply to all wild organisms, we focus on predators because of the particular challenges they pose for government trustees, trust managers, and society. Gray wolves Canis lupus L. deserve particular attention, because detailed information and abundant policy debates across regions have exposed four important challenges for preserving predators in the face of interest group hostility. One challenge is uncertainty and varied interpretations about public trustees' responsibilities for wildlife, which have created a mosaic of policies across jurisdictions. We explore how such mosaics have merits and drawbacks for biodiversity. The other three challenges to conserving wildlife as public trust assets are illuminated by the biology of predators and the interacting

  2. Allee effects on population dynamics with delay

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Celik, C.; Merdan, H.; Duman, O.; Akin, O.

    2008-01-01

    In this paper, we study the stability analysis of equilibrium points of population dynamics with delay when the Allee effect occurs at low population density. Mainly, our mathematical results and numerical simulations point to the stabilizing effect of the Allee effects on population dynamics with delay

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1994-01-01

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

  4. The effect of chronic seaweed subsidies on herbivory: plant-mediated fertilization pathway overshadows lizard-mediated predator pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piovia-Scott, Jonah; Spiller, David A; Takimoto, Gaku; Yang, Louie H; Wright, Amber N; Schoener, Thomas W

    2013-08-01

    Flows of energy and materials link ecosystems worldwide and have important consequences for the structure of ecological communities. While these resource subsidies typically enter recipient food webs through multiple channels, most previous studies focussed on a single pathway of resource input. We used path analysis to evaluate multiple pathways connecting chronic marine resource inputs (in the form of seaweed deposits) and herbivory in a shoreline terrestrial ecosystem. We found statistical support for a fertilization effect (seaweed increased foliar nitrogen content, leading to greater herbivory) and a lizard numerical response effect (seaweed increased lizard densities, leading to reduced herbivory), but not for a lizard diet-shift effect (seaweed increased the proportion of marine-derived prey in lizard diets, but lizard diet was not strongly associated with herbivory). Greater seaweed abundance was associated with greater herbivory, and the fertilization effect was larger than the combined lizard effects. Thus, the bottom-up, plant-mediated effect of fertilization on herbivory overshadowed the top-down effects of lizard predators. These results, from unmanipulated shoreline plots with persistent differences in chronic seaweed deposition, differ from those of a previous experimental study of the short-term effects of a pulse of seaweed deposition: while the increase in herbivory in response to chronic seaweed deposition was due to the fertilization effect, the short-term increase in herbivory in response to a pulse of seaweed deposition was due to the lizard diet-shift effect. This contrast highlights the importance of the temporal pattern of resource inputs in determining the mechanism of community response to resource subsidies.

  5. Rats and seabirds: effects of egg size on predation risk and the potential of conditioned taste aversion as a mitigation method.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Latorre, Lucía; Larrinaga, Asier R; Santamaría, Luis

    2013-01-01

    Seabirds nesting on islands are threatened by invasive rodents, such as mice and rats, which may attack eggs, chicks and even adults. The low feasibility of rat eradications on many islands makes the development of alternate control plans necessary. We used a combination of field experiments on a Mediterranean island invaded by black rats (Rattusrattus) to evaluate (1) the predation risk posed to different-sized seabird eggs and (2), the potential of two deterrent methods (electronic and chemical) to reduce its impact. Rats were able to consume eggs of all sizes (12 to 68 g), but survival increased 13 times from the smallest to the largest eggs (which also had more resistant eggshells). Extrapolation to seabird eggs suggests that the smallest species (Hydrobatespelagicus) suffer the most severe predation risk, but even the largest (Larusmichahellis) could suffer >60% mortality. Nest attack was not reduced by the deterrents. However, chemical deterrence (conditioned taste aversion by lithium chloride) slowed the increase in predation rate over time, which resulted in a three-fold increase in egg survival to predation as compared to both control and electronic deterrence. At the end of the experimental period, this effect was confirmed by a treatment swap, which showed that conferred protection remains at least 15 days after cessation of the treatment. Results indicate that small seabird species are likely to suffer severe rates of nest predation by rats and that conditioned taste aversion, but not electronic repellents, may represent a suitable method to protect colonies when eradication or control is not feasible or cost-effective.

  6. Functional responses and scaling in predator-prey interactions of marine fishes: contemporary issues and emerging concepts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunsicker, Mary E; Ciannelli, Lorenzo; Bailey, Kevin M; Buckel, Jeffrey A; Wilson White, J; Link, Jason S; Essington, Timothy E; Gaichas, Sarah; Anderson, Todd W; Brodeur, Richard D; Chan, Kung-Sik; Chen, Kun; Englund, Göran; Frank, Kenneth T; Freitas, Vânia; Hixon, Mark A; Hurst, Thomas; Johnson, Darren W; Kitchell, James F; Reese, Doug; Rose, George A; Sjodin, Henrik; Sydeman, William J; van der Veer, Henk W; Vollset, Knut; Zador, Stephani

    2011-12-01

    Predator-prey interactions are a primary structuring force vital to the resilience of marine communities and sustainability of the world's oceans. Human influences on marine ecosystems mediate changes in species interactions. This generality is evinced by the cascading effects of overharvesting top predators on the structure and function of marine ecosystems. It follows that ecological forecasting, ecosystem management, and marine spatial planning require a better understanding of food web relationships. Characterising and scaling predator-prey interactions for use in tactical and strategic tools (i.e. multi-species management and ecosystem models) are paramount in this effort. Here, we explore what issues are involved and must be considered to advance the use of predator-prey theory in the context of marine fisheries science. We address pertinent contemporary ecological issues including (1) the approaches and complexities of evaluating predator responses in marine systems; (2) the 'scaling up' of predator-prey interactions to the population, community, and ecosystem level; (3) the role of predator-prey theory in contemporary fisheries and ecosystem modelling approaches; and (4) directions for the future. Our intent is to point out needed research directions that will improve our understanding of predator-prey interactions in the context of the sustainable marine fisheries and ecosystem management. 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/CNRS.

  7. 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.

  8. Predation risk determines breeding territory choice in a Mediterranean cavity-nesting bird community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parejo, Deseada; Avilés, Jesús M

    2011-01-01

    Non-direct effects of predation can be an important component of the total effect of predation, modulating animal population and community dynamics. The isolated effects of predation risk on the spatial organisation of the breeding bird community, however, remains poorly studied. We investigated whether an experimentally increased predation risk prior to reproduction affected breeding territory selection and subsequent reproductive strategies in three Mediterranean cavity-nesting birds, i.e., the little owl Athene noctua, European roller Coracias garrulus and scops owl Otus scops. We found that territories used the previous year were more likely to be re-occupied when they belonged to the safe treatment rather than to the risky treatment. The first choice of breeders of all three species was for safe territories over risky ones. When all breeding attempts in the season (i.e., final occupation) were considered, breeders also preferred safe to risky sites. In addition, little owls laid larger eggs in risky territories than in safe territories. Our study provides experimental evidence of a rapid preventive response of the three most abundant species in a cavity-nesting bird community to a short-term manipulation of predation risk. This response highlights the key role of the non-direct effects of predation in modulating avian community organisation.

  9. A lion population under threat : understanding lion (Panthera leo Linnaeus, 1758) ecology and human-lion interactions related to livestock predation in Waza National Park, Cameroon

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tumenta, Pricelia Nyaekon

    2012-01-01

    Lions in Waza National Park Cameroon were studied with focus on lion ecology and the human-lion conflicts due to livestock predation. The number of adult lions has declined from 40-60 in 2002 to 14-21 in 2008, which represents a reduction of about 65% in 6 years. The human-livestock pressure on the

  10. Predation of the alien American mink Mustela vison on native crayfish populations in middle-sized streams in central and western Bohemia

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Fischer, D.; Pavluvčík, P.; Sedláček, František; Šálek, Martin

    2009-01-01

    Roč. 58, č. 1 (2009), s. 45-56 ISSN 0139-7893 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60870520 Keywords : mink diet * stone crayfish * prey selectivity * density-dependent predation * Czech Republic Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 0.357, year: 2009

  11. 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.

  12. Response of brown anoles Anolis sagrei to multimodal signals from a native and novel predator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Omar L. ELMASRI, Marcus S. MORENO, Courtney A. NEUMANN, Daniel T. BLUMSTEIN

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Multiple studies have focused on the importance of single modalities (visual, auditory, olfactory in eliciting anti-predator behavior, however multiple channels are often engaged simultaneously. While examining responses to multiple cues can potentially reveal more complex behavioral responses, little is known about how multimodal processing evolves. By contrasting response to familiar and novel predators, insights can be gained into the evolution of multimodal responses. We studied brown anoles’ (Anolis sagrei response to acoustic and visual predatory cues of a common potential predator, the great-tailed grackle Quiscalus mexicanus and to the American kestrel Falco sparverius, a species found in other populations but not present in our study population. We observed anole behavior before and after a stimulus and quantified rates of looking, display, and locomotion. Anoles increased their rate of locomotion in response to grackle models, an effect modulated by grackle vocalizations. No such response or modulation was seen when anoles were presented with kestrel stimuli. This suggests that the degree of sophistication of anole response to predators is experience dependent and that relaxed selection can result in reduced anti-predator response following loss of predators [Current Zoology 58 (6: 791–796, 2012].

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  14. 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

    Most flowering plants are hermaphrodites. However, in gynodioecious species, some members of the population are male-sterile and reproduce only by setting seed, while others gain fitness through both male and female function. How females compensate for the loss of male function remains unresolved for most gynodioecious species. Here, as with many plants, fitness differences may be influenced by interactions with multiple species. However, whether multiple species interactions result in gender-specific fitness differences remains unknown. Using observational data from 2009-2010, we quantified seed set of the two sex morphs of Polemonium foliosissimu and asked how it is affected by pollination, and seed predation from a dipteran predispersal seed predator (Anthomyiidae: Hylemya sp.). We assessed seed production and losses to predation in 27 populations for one year and in six populations for a second year. Females set significantly more seed than did hermaphrodites in both years. Of the fitness components we assessed, including the number of flowers per plant, fruit set, seeds/fruit, and proportion of fruits destroyed by Hylemya, only fruit destruction differed significantly between the sexes. In one year, seeds/fruit and predation had a stronger effect on seed set for hermaphrodites than for females. Because predispersal seed predators do not pollinate flowers, their effects may depend on successful pollination of flowers on which they oviposit. To examine if genders differed in pollen limitation and seed predation and/or their interactive effects, in 2011 we hand-pollinated flowers and removed seed predator eggs in a fully factorial design. Both sexes were pollen limited, but their degree of pollen limitation did not differ. However, predation reduced.seed set more for hermaphrodites than for females. We found no significant interaction between hand pollen and seed predation, and no interaction between hand pollination and gender. Our results suggest that while

  15. The Lesser Antillean Ameiva (Sauria, Teiidae) Re-evaluation, zoogeography and the effects of predation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Baskin, Jonathan N.; Williams, Ernest E.

    1966-01-01

    The Ameiva of the Lesser Antilles present an interesting case of isolated populations of related animals on a chain of islands that differ in size and proximity among themselves but form a geographic group. The situation is made still more interesting by the fact that at times in the Pleistocene the

  16. Temporal effects of hunting on foraging behavior of an apex predator: Do bears forego foraging when risk is high?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hertel, Anne G; Zedrosser, Andreas; Mysterud, Atle; Støen, Ole-Gunnar; Steyaert, Sam M J G; Swenson, Jon E

    2016-12-01

    Avoiding predators most often entails a food cost. For the Scandinavian brown bear (Ursus arctos), the hunting season coincides with the period of hyperphagia. Hunting mortality risk is not uniformly distributed throughout the day, but peaks in the early morning hours. As bears must increase mass for winter survival, they should be sensitive to temporal allocation of antipredator responses to periods of highest risk. We expected bears to reduce foraging activity at the expense of food intake in the morning hours when risk was high, but not in the afternoon, when risk was low. We used fine-scale GPS-derived activity patterns during the 2 weeks before and after the onset of the annual bear hunting season. At locations of probable foraging, we assessed abundance and sugar content, of bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus), the most important autumn food resource for bears in this area. Bears decreased their foraging activity in the morning hours of the hunting season. Likewise, they foraged less efficiently and on poorer quality berries in the morning. Neither of our foraging measures were affected by hunting in the afternoon foraging bout, indicating that bears did not allocate antipredator behavior to times of comparably lower risk. Bears effectively responded to variation in risk on the scale of hours. This entailed a measurable foraging cost. The additive effect of reduced foraging activity, reduced forage intake, and lower quality food may result in poorer body condition upon den entry and may ultimately reduce reproductive success.

  17. Effect of new and old pesticides on Orius armatus (Gross) - an Australian predator of western flower thrips, Frankliniella occidentalis (Pergande).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Broughton, Sonya; Harrison, Jessica; Rahman, Touhidur

    2014-03-01

    Orius armatus (Gross) is an important predator of western flower thrips, Frankliniella occidentalis (Pergande) (Thysanoptera: Thripidae) in Australian glasshouse grown sweet pepper. The failure of O. armatus to establish in some glasshouses has been attributed to the use of newer, more non-selective pesticides, some of which are regarded to be compatible with integrated pest management. The residual toxicity (via direct and indirect contact) of several older and newer chemistry pesticides were evaluated. In addition, the effect of several systemic insecticides through insecticide-treated food-chain uptake was tested. Older chemistry pesticides (methamidophos, dimethoate) were toxic to Orius armatus, except pirimicarb which was non-toxic. Newer chemistry pesticides differed in their suitability. Abamectin was toxic to adults and nymphs. Chlorantraniliprole, imidacloprid and spirotetramat were non-toxic. Spinosad and spinetoram were moderately toxic to O. armatus. Spinosad also reduced fecundity by 20% compared to the untreated control. Pymetrozine was non-toxic, but females exposed to treated beans produced 30% fewer eggs and 20% fewer nymphs hatched compared to the untreated control. The selective pesticides do not necessarily facilitate the conservation of beneficials, and further assessment of the various developmental stages and other sub-lethal effects of chlorantraniliprole, imidacloprid, pymetrozine, spinetoram, and spirotetramat is recommended. © 2013 Society of Chemical Industry.

  18. The effect of fasting and body reserves on cold tolerance in 2 pit-building insect predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scharf, Inon; Daniel, Alma; MacMillan, Heath Andrew; Katz, Noa

    2017-06-01

    Pit-building antlions and wormlions are 2 distantly-related insect species, whose larvae construct pits in loose soil to trap small arthropod prey. This convergent evolution of natural histories has led to additional similarities in their natural history and ecology, and thus, these 2 species encounter similar abiotic stress (such as periodic starvation) in their natural habitat. Here, we measured the cold tolerance of the 2 species and examined whether recent feeding or food deprivation, as well as body composition (body mass and lipid content) and condition (quantified as mass-to-size residuals) affect their cold tolerance. In contrast to other insects, in which food deprivation either enhanced or impaired cold tolerance, prolonged fasting had no effect on the cold tolerance of either species, which had similar cold tolerance. The 2 species differed, however, in how cold tolerance related to body mass and lipid content: although body mass was positively correlated with the wormlion cold tolerance, lipid content was a more reliable predictor of cold tolerance in the antlions. Cold tolerance also underwent greater change with ontogeny in wormlions than in antlions. We discuss possible reasons for this lack of effect of food deprivation on both species' cold tolerance, such as their high starvation tolerance (being sit-and-wait predators).

  19. 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.

  20. 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, ...

  1. Multipurpose effectiveness of Couroupita guianensis-synthesized gold nanoparticles: high antiplasmodial potential, field efficacy against malaria vectors and synergy with Aplocheilus lineatus predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Subramaniam, Jayapal; Murugan, Kadarkarai; Panneerselvam, Chellasamy; Kovendan, Kalimuthu; Madhiyazhagan, Pari; Dinesh, Devakumar; Kumar, Palanisamy Mahesh; Chandramohan, Balamurugan; Suresh, Udaiyan; Rajaganesh, Rajapandian; Alsalhi, Mohamad Saleh; Devanesan, Sandhanasamy; Nicoletti, Marcello; Canale, Angelo; Benelli, Giovanni

    2016-04-01

    Mosquito-borne diseases represent a deadly threat for millions of people worldwide. According to recent estimates, about 3.2 billion people, almost half of the world's population, are at risk of malaria. Malaria control is particularly challenging due to a growing number of chloroquine-resistant Plasmodium and pesticide-resistant Anopheles vectors. Newer and safer control tools are required. In this research, gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) were biosynthesized using a cheap flower extract of Couroupita guianensis as reducing and stabilizing agent. The biofabrication of AuNP was confirmed by UV-vis spectrophotometry, Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), energy-dispersive X-ray (EDX) spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction (XRD), zeta potential, and particle size analysis. AuNP showed different shapes including spheres, ovals, and triangles. AuNPs were crystalline in nature with face-centered cubic geometry; mean size was 29.2-43.8 nm. In laboratory conditions, AuNPs were toxic against Anopheles stephensi larvae, pupae, and adults. LC50 was 17.36 ppm (larva I), 19.79 ppm (larva II), 21.69 ppm (larva III), 24.57 ppm (larva IV), 28.78 ppm (pupa), and 11.23 ppm (adult). In the field, a single treatment with C. guianensis flower extract and AuNP (10 × LC50) led to complete larval mortality after 72 h. In standard laboratory conditions, the predation efficiency of golden wonder killifish, Aplocheilus lineatus, against A. stephensi IV instar larvae was 56.38 %, while in an aquatic environment treated with sub-lethal doses of the flower extract or AuNP, predation efficiency was boosted to 83.98 and 98.04 %, respectively. Lastly, the antiplasmodial activity of C. guianensis flower extract and AuNP was evaluated against CQ-resistant (CQ-r) and CQ-sensitive (CQ-s) strains of Plasmodium falciparum. IC50 of C. guianensis flower extract was 43.21 μg/ml (CQ-s) and 51.16 μg/ml (CQ-r). AuNP IC50 was 69.47 μg/ml (CQ-s) and 76

  2. 62 years of population dynamics of European perch (Perca fluviatilis) in a mesotrophic lake tracked using angler diaries: The role of commercial fishing, predation and temperature

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skov, Christian; Jansen, Teunis; Arlinghaus, Robert

    2017-01-01

    (abundance, mean size and record size) of European perch (Perca fluviatilis L.) in relation to the impact of three commercial fishers with different fishing strategies, pike (Esox lucius L.) predation and temperature. We found that anglers’ harvest rates of perch varied by a factor of 10 over time......, but it also underlines the need for supplementary data on biotic and abiotic factors to reach the full potential of angler diary data...

  3. 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.

  4. Group dynamics of zebra and wildebeest in a woodland savanna: effects of predation risk and habitat density.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Thaker

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Group dynamics of gregarious ungulates in the grasslands of the African savanna have been well studied, but the trade-offs that affect grouping of these ungulates in woodland habitats or dense vegetation are less well understood. We examined the landscape-level distribution of groups of blue wildebeest, Connochaetes taurinus, and Burchell's zebra, Equus burchelli, in a predominantly woodland area (Karongwe Game Reserve, South Africa; KGR to test the hypothesis that group dynamics are a function of minimizing predation risk from their primary predator, lion, Panthera leo. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Using generalized linear models, we examined the relative importance of habitat type (differing in vegetation density, probability of encountering lion (based on utilization distribution of all individual lions in the reserve, and season in predicting group size and composition. We found that only in open scrub habitat, group size for both ungulate species increased with the probability of encountering lion. Group composition differed between the two species and was driven by habitat selection as well as predation risk. For both species, composition of groups was, however, dominated by males in open scrub habitats, irrespective of the probability of encountering lion. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Distribution patterns of wildebeest and zebra groups at the landscape level directly support the theoretical and empirical evidence from a range of taxa predicting that grouping is favored in open habitats and when predation risk is high. Group composition reflected species-specific social, physiological and foraging constraints, as well as the importance of predation risk. Avoidance of high resource open scrub habitat by females can lead to loss of foraging opportunities, which can be particularly costly in areas such as KGR, where this resource is limited. Thus, landscape-level grouping dynamics are species specific and particular to the

  5. Predation, scramble competition, and the vigilance group size effect in dark-eyed juncos (Junco hyemalis)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steven L. Lima; Patrick A. Zollner; Peter A. Bednekoff

    1999-01-01

    In socially feeding birds and mammals, as group size increases, individuals devote less time to scanning their environment and more time to feeding. This vigilance "group size effect" has long been attributed to the anti-predatory benefits of group living, but many investigators have suggested that this effect may be driven by scramble competition for limited...

  6. Legacy effects in material flux: structural catchment changes predate long-term studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daniel Bain; Mark B. Green; John L. Campbell; John F. Chamblee; Sayo Chaoka; Jennifer M. Fraterrigo; Sujay S. Kaushal; Sujay S. Kaushal; Sherry L. Martin; Thomas E. Jordan; Anthony J. Parolari; William V. Sobczak; Donald E. Weller; Wilfred M. Wolheim; Emery R. Boose; Jonathan M. Duncan; Gretchen M. Gettel; Brian R. Hall; Praveen Kumar; Jonathan R. Thompson; James M. Vose; Emily M. Elliott; David S. Leigh

    2012-01-01

    Legacy effects of past land use and disturbance are increasingly recognized, yet consistent definitions of and criteria for defining them do not exist. To address this gap in biological- and ecosystem-assessment frameworks, we propose a general metric for evaluating potential legacy effects, which are computed by normalizing altered system function persistence with...

  7. 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.

  8. Optimal control of native predators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Julien; O'Connell, Allan F.; Kendall, William L.; Runge, Michael C.; Simons, Theodore R.; Waldstein, Arielle H.; Schulte, Shiloh A.; Converse, Sarah J.; Smith, Graham W.; Pinion, Timothy; Rikard, Michael; Zipkin, Elise F.

    2010-01-01

    We apply decision theory in a structured decision-making framework to evaluate how control of raccoons (Procyon lotor), a native predator, can promote the conservation of a declining population of American Oystercatchers (Haematopus palliatus) on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Our management objective was to maintain Oystercatcher productivity above a level deemed necessary for population recovery while minimizing raccoon removal. We evaluated several scenarios including no raccoon removal, and applied an adaptive optimization algorithm to account for parameter uncertainty. We show how adaptive optimization can be used to account for uncertainties about how raccoon control may affect Oystercatcher productivity. Adaptive management can reduce this type of uncertainty and is particularly well suited for addressing controversial management issues such as native predator control. The case study also offers several insights that may be relevant to the optimal control of other native predators. First, we found that stage-specific removal policies (e.g., yearling versus adult raccoon removals) were most efficient if the reproductive values among stage classes were very different. Second, we found that the optimal control of raccoons would result in higher Oystercatcher productivity than the minimum levels recommended for this species. Third, we found that removing more raccoons initially minimized the total number of removals necessary to meet long term management objectives. Finally, if for logistical reasons managers cannot sustain a removal program by removing a minimum number of raccoons annually, managers may run the risk of creating an ecological trap for Oystercatchers.

  9. 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

  10. Effects of Intraguild Predation: Evaluating Resource Competition between Two Canid Species with Apparent Niche Separation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam J. Kozlowski

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Many studies determine which habitat components are important to animals and the extent their use may overlap with competitive species. However, such studies are often undertaken after populations are in decline or under interspecific stress. Since habitat selection is not independent of interspecific stress, quantifying an animal's current landscape use could be misleading if the species distribution is suboptimal. We present an alternative approach by modeling the predicted distributions of two sympatric species on the landscape using dietary preferences and prey distribution. We compared the observed habitat use of kit foxes (Vulpes macrotis and coyotes (Canis latrans against their predicted distribution. Data included locations of kit foxes and coyotes, carnivore scat transects, and seasonal prey surveys. Although habitats demonstrated heterogeneity with respect to prey resources, only coyotes showed habitat use designed to maximize access to prey. In contrast, kit foxes used habitats which did not align closely with prey resources. Instead, habitat use by kit foxes represented spatial and behavioral strategies designed to minimize spatial overlap with coyotes while maximizing access to resources. Data on the distribution of prey, their dietary importance, and the species-specific disparities between predicted and observed habitat distributions supports a mechanism by which kit fox distribution is derived from intense competitive interactions with coyotes.

  11. Ocean Acidification and Increased Temperature Have Both Positive and Negative Effects on Early Ontogenetic Traits of a Rocky Shore Keystone Predator Species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manríquez, Patricio H; Jara, María Elisa; Seguel, Mylene E; Torres, Rodrigo; Alarcon, Emilio; Lee, Matthew R

    2016-01-01

    The combined effect of ocean acidification and warming is expected to have significant effects on several traits of marine organisms. The gastropod Concholepas concholepas is a rocky shore keystone predator characteristic of the south-eastern Pacific coast of South America and an important natural resource exploited by small-scale artisanal fishermen along the coast of Chile and Peru. In this study, we used small juveniles of C. concholepas collected from the rocky intertidal habitats of southern Chile (39 °S) to evaluate under laboratory conditions the potential consequences of projected near-future levels of ocean acidification and warming for important early ontogenetic traits. The individuals were exposed long-term (5.8 months) to contrasting pCO2 (ca. 500 and 1400 μatm) and temperature (15 and 19 °C) levels. After this period we compared body growth traits, dislodgement resistance, predator-escape response, self-righting and metabolic rates. With respect to these traits there was no evidence of a synergistic interaction between pCO2 and temperature. Shell growth was negatively affected by high pCO2 levels only at 15 °C. High pCO2 levels also had a negative effect on the predator-escape response. Conversely, dislodgement resistance and self-righting were positively affected by high pCO2 levels at both temperatures. High tenacity and fast self-righting would reduce predation risk in nature and might compensate for the negative effects of high pCO2 levels on other important defensive traits such as shell size and escape behaviour. We conclude that climate change might produce in C. concholepas positive and negative effects in physiology and behaviour. In fact, some of the behavioural responses might be a consequence of physiological effects, such as changes in chemosensory capacity (e.g. predator-escape response) or secretion of adhesive mucous (e.g. dislodgement resistance). Moreover, we conclude that positive behavioural responses may assist in the

  12. Ocean Acidification and Increased Temperature Have Both Positive and Negative Effects on Early Ontogenetic Traits of a Rocky Shore Keystone Predator Species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricio H Manríquez

    Full Text Available The combined effect of ocean acidification and warming is expected to have significant effects on several traits of marine organisms. The gastropod Concholepas concholepas is a rocky shore keystone predator characteristic of the south-eastern Pacific coast of South America and an important natural resource exploited by small-scale artisanal fishermen along the coast of Chile and Peru. In this study, we used small juveniles of C. concholepas collected from the rocky intertidal habitats of southern Chile (39 °S to evaluate under laboratory conditions the potential consequences of projected near-future levels of ocean acidification and warming for important early ontogenetic traits. The individuals were exposed long-term (5.8 months to contrasting pCO2 (ca. 500 and 1400 μatm and temperature (15 and 19 °C levels. After this period we compared body growth traits, dislodgement resistance, predator-escape response, self-righting and metabolic rates. With respect to these traits there was no evidence of a synergistic interaction between pCO2 and temperature. Shell growth was negatively affected by high pCO2 levels only at 15 °C. High pCO2 levels also had a negative effect on the predator-escape response. Conversely, dislodgement resistance and self-righting were positively affected by high pCO2 levels at both temperatures. High tenacity and fast self-righting would reduce predation risk in nature and might compensate for the negative effects of high pCO2 levels on other important defensive traits such as shell size and escape behaviour. We conclude that climate change might produce in C. concholepas positive and negative effects in physiology and behaviour. In fact, some of the behavioural responses might be a consequence of physiological effects, such as changes in chemosensory capacity (e.g. predator-escape response or secretion of adhesive mucous (e.g. dislodgement resistance. Moreover, we conclude that positive behavioural responses may assist

  13. Ocean Acidification and Increased Temperature Have Both Positive and Negative Effects on Early Ontogenetic Traits of a Rocky Shore Keystone Predator Species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manríquez, Patricio H.; Jara, María Elisa; Seguel, Mylene E.; Torres, Rodrigo; Alarcon, Emilio; Lee, Matthew R.

    2016-01-01

    The combined effect of ocean acidification and warming is expected to have significant effects on several traits of marine organisms. The gastropod Concholepas concholepas is a rocky shore keystone predator characteristic of the south-eastern Pacific coast of South America and an important natural resource exploited by small-scale artisanal fishermen along the coast of Chile and Peru. In this study, we used small juveniles of C. concholepas collected from the rocky intertidal habitats of southern Chile (39°S) to evaluate under laboratory conditions the potential consequences of projected near-future levels of ocean acidification and warming for important early ontogenetic traits. The individuals were exposed long-term (5.8 months) to contrasting pCO2 (ca. 500 and 1400 μatm) and temperature (15 and 19°C) levels. After this period we compared body growth traits, dislodgement resistance, predator-escape response, self-righting and metabolic rates. With respect to these traits there was no evidence of a synergistic interaction between pCO2 and temperature. Shell growth was negatively affected by high pCO2 levels only at 15°C. High pCO2 levels also had a negative effect on the predator-escape response. Conversely, dislodgement resistance and self-righting were positively affected by high pCO2 levels at both temperatures. High tenacity and fast self-righting would reduce predation risk in nature and might compensate for the negative effects of high pCO2 levels on other important defensive traits such as shell size and escape behaviour. We conclude that climate change might produce in C. concholepas positive and negative effects in physiology and behaviour. In fact, some of the behavioural responses might be a consequence of physiological effects, such as changes in chemosensory capacity (e.g. predator-escape response) or secretion of adhesive mucous (e.g. dislodgement resistance). Moreover, we conclude that positive behavioural responses may assist in the adaptation

  14. 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.

  15. ``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.

  16. Does small mammal prey guild affect the exposure of predators to anticoagulant rodenticides?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tosh, D.G.; McDonald, R.A.; Bearhop, S.; Lllewellyn, N.R.; Fee, S.; Sharp, E.A.; Barnett, E.A.; Shore, R.F.

    2011-01-01

    Ireland has a restricted small mammal prey guild but still includes species most likely to consume anticoagulant rodenticide (AR) baits. This may enhance secondary exposure of predators to ARs. We compared liver AR residues in foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in Northern Ireland (NI) with those in foxes from Great Britain which has a more diverse prey guild but similar agricultural use of ARs. Liver ARs were detected in 84% of NI foxes, more than in a comparable sample of foxes from Scotland and similar to that of suspected AR poisoned animals from England and Wales. High exposure in NI foxes is probably due to greater predation of commensal rodents and non-target species most likely to take AR baits, and may also partly reflect greater exposure to highly persistent brodifacoum and flocoumafen. High exposure is likely to enhance risk and Ireland may be a sentinel for potential effects on predator populations. - Highlights: → Exposure of a predator to anticoagulant rodenticides was compared in Britain and Ireland. → Exposure was higher in Ireland. → Differences driven by small mammal prey guilds. → Ireland a potential sentinel for predator exposure to anticoagulants. - Restriction of the small mammal prey guild is associated with enhanced exposure of predators to anticoagulant rodenticides.

  17. Protozoan predation in soil slurries compromises determination of contaminant mineralization potential

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Badawi, Nora; Johnsen, Anders R.; Brandt, Kristian K.; Sørensen, Jan; Aamand, Jens

    2012-01-01

    Soil suspensions (slurries) are commonly used to estimate the potential of soil microbial communities to mineralize organic contaminants. The preparation of soil slurries disrupts soil structure, however, potentially affecting both the bacterial populations and their protozoan predators. We studied the importance of this “slurry effect” on mineralization of the herbicide 2-methyl-4-chlorophenoxyacetic acid (MCPA, 14 C-labelled), focussing on the effects of protozoan predation. Mineralization of MCPA was studied in “intact” soil and soil slurries differing in soil:water ratio, both in the presence and absence of the protozoan activity inhibitor cycloheximide. Protozoan predation inhibited mineralization in dense slurry of subsoil (soil:water ratio 1:3), but only in the most dilute slurry of topsoil (soil:water ratio 1:100). Our results demonstrate that protozoan predation in soil slurries may compromise quantification of contaminant mineralization potential, especially when the initial density of degrader bacteria is low and their growth is controlled by predation during the incubation period. - Highlights: ► We studied the protozoan impact on MCPA mineralization in soil slurries. ► Cycloheximide was used as protozoan inhibitor. ► Protozoa inhibited MCPA mineralization in dilute topsoil slurry and subsoil slurry. ► Mineralization potentials may be underestimated when using soil slurries. - Protozoan predation may strongly bias the quantification of mineralization potential when performed in soil slurries, especially when the initial density of degrader bacteria is low such as in subsoil or very dilute topsoil slurries.

  18. Toxic and genotoxic effects of Roundup on tadpoles of the Indian skittering frog (Euflictis cyanophlyctis) in the presence and absence of predator stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yadav, Sushama Singh; Giri, Sarbani; Singha, Utsab; Boro, Freeman; Giri, Anirudha

    2013-05-15

    Glyphosate, a post emergent herbicide, has become the backbone of no-till agriculture and is considered safe for animals. However, the impact of glyphosate on non-target organisms, especially on amphibians, is the subject of major concern and debate in recent times. We examined the toxic and genotoxic effects of Roundup, a commercial formulation of glyphosate, in the tadpoles of the Indian skittering frog (Euflictis cyanophlyctis). Roundup at different concentrations (0, 1, 2, 3, 4 and 8mg acid equivalent (ae)/L), tested in a 2×6 factorial design in the presence and absence of predator stress, induced concentration-dependent lethality in tadpoles. The 96-h LC50 for Roundup in the absence and presence of predator stress were 3.76mgae/L and 3.39mgae/L, respectively. The 10-day LC50 value for Roundup was significantly lower, 2.12mgae/L and 1.91mgae/L in the absence and presence of predator stress, respectively. Lower concentrations of Roundup (1, 2 and 3mgae/L) induced the formation of micronuclei (MN) in the erythrocytes of tadpoles at 24-h (F3,56=10.286, p<0.001), 48-h (F3,56=48.255, p<0.001), 72-h (F3,56=118.933, p<0.001) and 96-h (F3,56=85.414, p<0.001) in a concentration-dependent manner. Presence of predator stress apparently increased the toxicity and genotoxicity of Roundup; but these effects were not statistically significant. These findings suggest that Roundup at environmentally relevant concentrations has lethal and genotoxic impact on E. cyanophlyctis; which may have long-term fitness consequence to the species. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Stability analysis of predator-prey interaction with a crowding effect ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The mathematical modeling of species interactions usually relies on competition models. However, it is known that species interactions may exhibit more complicated patterns with a crowding effect and this can be particularly important in benign environments. In this paper we discuss competition models with a crowding ...

  20. Genetic engineering of plant volatile terpenoids: effects on a herbivore, a predator and a parasitoid

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kos, M.; Houshyani, B.; Overeem, A.J.; Bouwmeester, H.J.; Weldegergis, B.T.; van Loon, J.J.A.; Dicke, M.; Vet, L.E.M.

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Most insect-resistant transgenic crops employ toxins to control pests. A novel approach is to enhance the effectiveness of natural enemies by genetic engineering of the biosynthesis of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Before the commercialisation of such transgenic plants can be

  1. Prey-predator dynamics in communities of culturable soil bacteria and protozoa: differential effects of mercury

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Holtze, M. S.; Ekelund, F.; Rasmussen, Lasse Dam

    2003-01-01

    CFUs on the general medium 1/100 tryptic soy agar (TSA) were significantly decreased when the soil had been amended with Hg. In contrast, no effect was seen on the number of CFUs on the Pseudomonas-specific medium Gould's S1 agar. Protozoan numbers estimated by the most probable number (MPN) method...

  2. 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.

  3. 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...

  4. Effects of Domestication on Predation Mortality and Competitive Dominance; Yakima/Klickitat Fisheries Project Monitoring and Evaluation, 2004-2005 Annual Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pearsons, Todd N.; Fritts, Anthony L.; Scott, Jennifer L. (Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Olympia, WA)

    2005-05-01

    This report is intended to satisfy two concurrent needs: (1) provide a contract deliverable from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) to the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA), with emphasis on identification of salient results of value to ongoing Yakima/Klickitat Fisheries Project (YKFP) planning, and (2) summarize results of research that have broader scientific relevance. This is the second of a series of progress reports that address the effects of hatchery domestication on predation mortality and competitive dominance in the upper Yakima River basin (Pearsons et al. 2004). This progress report summarizes data collected between January 1, 2004 and December 31, 2004. Raising fish in hatcheries can cause unintended behavioral, physiological, or morphological changes in chinook salmon due to domestication selection. Domestication selection is defined by Busack and Currens 1995 as, ''changes in quantity, variety, or combination of alleles within a captive population or between a captive population and its source population in the wild as a result of selection in an artificial environment''. Selection in artificial environments could be due to intentional or artificial selection, biased sampling during some stage of culture, or unintentional selection (Busack and Currens 1995). Genetic changes can result in lowered survival in the natural environment (Reisenbichler and Rubin 1999). The goal of supplementation or conservation hatcheries is to produce fish that will integrate into natural populations. Conservation hatcheries attempt to minimize intentional or biased sampling so that the hatchery fish are similar to naturally produced fish. However, the selective pressures in hatcheries are dramatically different than in the wild, which can result in genetic differences between hatchery and wild fish. The selective pressures may be particularly prominent during the freshwater rearing stage where most mortality of wild fish occurs

  5. Modelling foraging movements of diving predators: a theoretical study exploring the effect of heterogeneous landscapes on foraging efficiency

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marianna Chimienti

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Foraging in the marine environment presents particular challenges for air-breathing predators. Information about prey capture rates, the strategies that diving predators use to maximise prey encounter rates and foraging success are still largely unknown and difficult to observe. As well, with the growing awareness of potential climate change impacts and the increasing interest in the development of renewable sources it is unknown how the foraging activity of diving predators such as seabirds will respond to both the presence of underwater structures and the potential corresponding changes in prey distributions. Motivated by this issue we developed a theoretical model to gain general understanding of how the foraging efficiency of diving predators may vary according to landscape structure and foraging strategy. Our theoretical model highlights that animal movements, intervals between prey capture and foraging efficiency are likely to critically depend on the distribution of the prey resource and the size and distribution of introduced underwater structures. For multiple prey loaders, changes in prey distribution affected the searching time necessary to catch a set amount of prey which in turn affected the foraging efficiency. The spatial aggregation of prey around small devices (∼ 9 × 9 m created a valuable habitat for a successful foraging activity resulting in shorter intervals between prey captures and higher foraging efficiency. The presence of large devices (∼ 24 × 24 m however represented an obstacle for predator movement, thus increasing the intervals between prey captures. In contrast, for single prey loaders the introduction of spatial aggregation of the resources did not represent an advantage suggesting that their foraging efficiency is more strongly affected by other factors such as the timing to find the first prey item which was found to occur faster in the presence of large devices. The development of this theoretical model

  6. The use of coded wire tags to estimate cormorant predation on fish stocks in an estuary

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jepsen, Niels; Klenke, Reinhard; Sonnesen, Per Michael

    2010-01-01

    One of the main obstacles to resolving the conflict between an increasing population of cormorants, Phalacrocorax carbo sinensis, and the fishing industry is the lack of documentation of the effect of the birds’ predation on fish stocks. Tagging and releasing fish with coded wire tags followed...

  7. 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 ...

  8. 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...

  9. Defensive aggregation (huddling in Rattus norvegicus toward predator odor: individual differences, social buffering effects and neural correlates.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael T Bowen

    Full Text Available Aggregation is a defensive strategy employed by many prey species in response to predatory threat. Our group has characterized defensive aggregation (huddling in Rattus norvegicus in response to a ball of cat fur. In this situation some rats huddle less, and approach the threatening cue more than others (active vs. passive responders. The present study explored whether active responding is a stable phenotype associated with behaviors outside direct predatory encounters. The neural substrates of active and passive responding under predatory threat were explored using c-Fos immunohistochemistry. Finally, we examined whether the presence of conspecifics during predatory threat biases behavior towards active responding. Active and passive responding styles were found to be stable in individual rats across consecutive group exposures to cat fur, and were predicted by anxiety-like behavior in an open-field emergence test. Active responders displayed less conditioned fear in an environment associated with predatory threat, and had higher post-exposure intake of a weak sucrose solution (a test of "anhedonia". Active responding was associated with: greater cat fur-induced activation of the accessory olfactory bulb, reflecting greater olfactory stimulation in rats actively approaching the fur; lowered activation of somatosensory cortex, reflecting reduced huddling with conspecifics; and reduced activation in the lateral septum. Social exposure to cat fur promoted active responding relative to individual exposure, and lowered c-Fos expression in the dorsomedial periaqueductal grey, medial caudate putamen and lateral habenula. We conclude that individual differences in anti-predator behavior appear stable traits with active responders having a more resilient phenotype. Social exposure to predatory threat has an acute buffering effect, subtly changing the neural and behavioral response towards threat and encouraging active responding. An association between

  10. Defensive Aggregation (Huddling) in Rattus Norvegicus toward Predator Odor: Individual Differences, Social Buffering Effects and Neural Correlates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowen, Michael T.; Kevin, Richard C.; May, Matthew; Staples, Lauren G.; Hunt, Glenn E.; McGregor, Iain S.

    2013-01-01

    Aggregation is a defensive strategy employed by many prey species in response to predatory threat. Our group has characterized defensive aggregation (huddling) in Rattus norvegicus in response to a ball of cat fur. In this situation some rats huddle less, and approach the threatening cue more than others (active vs. passive responders). The present study explored whether active responding is a stable phenotype associated with behaviors outside direct predatory encounters. The neural substrates of active and passive responding under predatory threat were explored using c-Fos immunohistochemistry. Finally, we examined whether the presence of conspecifics during predatory threat biases behavior towards active responding. Active and passive responding styles were found to be stable in individual rats across consecutive group exposures to cat fur, and were predicted by anxiety-like behavior in an open-field emergence test. Active responders displayed less conditioned fear in an environment associated with predatory threat, and had higher post-exposure intake of a weak sucrose solution (a test of “anhedonia”). Active responding was associated with: greater cat fur-induced activation of the accessory olfactory bulb, reflecting greater olfactory stimulation in rats actively approaching the fur; lowered activation of somatosensory cortex, reflecting reduced huddling with conspecifics; and reduced activation in the lateral septum. Social exposure to cat fur promoted active responding relative to individual exposure, and lowered c-Fos expression in the dorsomedial periaqueductal grey, medial caudate putamen and lateral habenula. We conclude that individual differences in anti-predator behavior appear stable traits with active responders having a more resilient phenotype. Social exposure to predatory threat has an acute buffering effect, subtly changing the neural and behavioral response towards threat and encouraging active responding. An association between active

  11. Defensive aggregation (huddling) in Rattus norvegicus toward predator odor: individual differences, social buffering effects and neural correlates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowen, Michael T; Kevin, Richard C; May, Matthew; Staples, Lauren G; Hunt, Glenn E; McGregor, Iain S

    2013-01-01

    Aggregation is a defensive strategy employed by many prey species in response to predatory threat. Our group has characterized defensive aggregation (huddling) in Rattus norvegicus in response to a ball of cat fur. In this situation some rats huddle less, and approach the threatening cue more than others (active vs. passive responders). The present study explored whether active responding is a stable phenotype associated with behaviors outside direct predatory encounters. The neural substrates of active and passive responding under predatory threat were explored using c-Fos immunohistochemistry. Finally, we examined whether the presence of conspecifics during predatory threat biases behavior towards active responding. Active and passive responding styles were found to be stable in individual rats across consecutive group exposures to cat fur, and were predicted by anxiety-like behavior in an open-field emergence test. Active responders displayed less conditioned fear in an environment associated with predatory threat, and had higher post-exposure intake of a weak sucrose solution (a test of "anhedonia"). Active responding was associated with: greater cat fur-induced activation of the accessory olfactory bulb, reflecting greater olfactory stimulation in rats actively approaching the fur; lowered activation of somatosensory cortex, reflecting reduced huddling with conspecifics; and reduced activation in the lateral septum. Social exposure to cat fur promoted active responding relative to individual exposure, and lowered c-Fos expression in the dorsomedial periaqueductal grey, medial caudate putamen and lateral habenula. We conclude that individual differences in anti-predator behavior appear stable traits with active responders having a more resilient phenotype. Social exposure to predatory threat has an acute buffering effect, subtly changing the neural and behavioral response towards threat and encouraging active responding. An association between active responding

  12. What doesn't kill you makes you wary? Effect of repeated culling on the behaviour of an invasive predator.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isabelle M Côté

    Full Text Available As a result of being hunted, animals often alter their behaviour in ways that make future encounters with predators less likely. When hunting is carried out for conservation, for example to control invasive species, these behavioural changes can inadvertently impede the success of future efforts. We examined the effects of repeated culling by spearing on the behaviour of invasive predatory lionfish (Pterois volitans/miles on Bahamian coral reef patches. We compared the extent of concealment and activity levels of lionfish at dawn and midday on 16 coral reef patches off Eleuthera, The Bahamas. Eight of the patches had been subjected to regular daytime removals of lionfish by spearing for two years. We also estimated the distance at which lionfish became alert to slowly approaching divers on culled and unculled reef patches. Lionfish on culled reefs were less active and hid deeper within the reef during the day than lionfish on patches where no culling had occurred. There were no differences at dawn when removals do not take place. Lionfish on culled reefs also adopted an alert posture at a greater distance from divers than lionfish on unculled reefs. More crepuscular activity likely leads to greater encounter rates by lionfish with more native fish species because the abundance of reef fish outside of shelters typically peaks at dawn and dusk. Hiding deeper within the reef could also make remaining lionfish less likely to be encountered and more difficult to catch by spearfishers during culling efforts. Shifts in the behaviour of hunted invasive animals might be common and they have implications both for the impact of invasive species and for the design and success of invasive control programs.

  13. What doesn't kill you makes you wary? Effect of repeated culling on the behaviour of an invasive predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Côté, Isabelle M; Darling, Emily S; Malpica-Cruz, Luis; Smith, Nicola S; Green, Stephanie J; Curtis-Quick, Jocelyn; Layman, Craig

    2014-01-01

    As a result of being hunted, animals often alter their behaviour in ways that make future encounters with predators less likely. When hunting is carried out for conservation, for example to control invasive species, these behavioural changes can inadvertently impede the success of future efforts. We examined the effects of repeated culling by spearing on the behaviour of invasive predatory lionfish (Pterois volitans/miles) on Bahamian coral reef patches. We compared the extent of concealment and activity levels of lionfish at dawn and midday on 16 coral reef patches off Eleuthera, The Bahamas. Eight of the patches had been subjected to regular daytime removals of lionfish by spearing for two years. We also estimated the distance at which lionfish became alert to slowly approaching divers on culled and unculled reef patches. Lionfish on culled reefs were less active and hid deeper within the reef during the day than lionfish on patches where no culling had occurred. There were no differences at dawn when removals do not take place. Lionfish on culled reefs also adopted an alert posture at a greater distance from divers than lionfish on unculled reefs. More crepuscular activity likely leads to greater encounter rates by lionfish with more native fish species because the abundance of reef fish outside of shelters typically peaks at dawn and dusk. Hiding deeper within the reef could also make remaining lionfish less likely to be encountered and more difficult to catch by spearfishers during culling efforts. Shifts in the behaviour of hunted invasive animals might be common and they have implications both for the impact of invasive species and for the design and success of invasive control programs.

  14. Operational note effects of fipronil and lambda-cyhalothrin against larval Anopheles quadrimaculatus and nontarget aquatic mosquito predators in Arkansas small rice plots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dennett, James A; Bernhardt, John L; Meisch, Max V

    2003-06-01

    The effects of fipronil and lambda-cyhalothrin, applied at rates labeled for control of the rice water weevil, Lissorhoptrus oryzophilus, on 3 nontarget indigenous insect species in Arkansas rice are described. Three replicates of untreated control checks and fipronil- and lambda-cyhalothrin-treated plots containing 3 sentinel cages each were performed. Ten 4th-stage larvae of Anopheles quadrimaculatus, 10 adult Tropisternus lateralis, or 10 adult Notonecta indica were placed within individual cages in small rice plots treated with ICON 6.2 FS (fipronil) at 0.025 lb active ingredient (AI)/acre (0.028 kg/ha) or KARATEZ 2.08 CS (lambda-cyhalothrin) at 0.03 lb AI/acre (0.033 kg/ha) applied over vegetation and water with a single-boom sprayer. At 24 h after treatment in fipronil plots, significantly higher control of An. quadrimaculatus and T. lateralis (69 and 48% control, respectively) was achieved, compared to N. indica (18%). In lambda-cyhalothrin plots 24 h after treatment, 100% reductions of both T. lateralis and N. indica were highly significant (P lambda-cyhalothrin plots 48 h after treatment, with 93 and 53% control of T. lateralis and N. indica, respectively, compared to 7% control of An. quadrimaculatus. A marked difference in susceptibility was found between selected nontarget organisms used in this study. When using lambda-cyhalothrin to control adult L. oryzophilus, populations of nontarget beneficial insects, such as T. lateralis and N. indica, could be adversely affected, whereas nontarget pestilent species, such as An. quadrimaculatus, could proliferate. Fipronil achieved higher percentages of control against An. quadrimaculatus, compared to lambda-cyhalothrin, and was less harmful to both nontarget predators.

  15. Does colour polymorphism enhance survival of prey populations?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wennersten, Lena; Forsman, Anders

    2009-01-01

    That colour polymorphism may protect prey populations from predation is an old but rarely tested hypothesis. We examine whether colour polymorphic populations of prey exposed to avian predators in an ecologically valid visual context were exposed to increased extinction risk compared with monomorphic populations. We made 2976 artificial pastry prey, resembling Lepidoptera larvae, in four different colours and presented them in 124 monomorphic and 124 tetramorphic populations on tree trunks and branches such that they would be exposed to predation by free-living birds, and monitored their ‘survival’. Among monomorphic populations, there was a significant effect of prey coloration on survival, confirming that coloration influenced susceptibility to visually oriented predators. Survival of polymorphic populations was inferior to that of monomorphic green populations, but did not differ significantly from monomorphic brown, yellow or red populations. Differences in survival within polymorphic populations paralleled those seen among monomorphic populations; the red morph most frequently went extinct first and the green morph most frequently survived the longest. Our findings do not support the traditional protective polymorphism hypothesis and are in conflict with those of earlier studies. As a possible explanation to our findings, we offer a competing ‘giveaway cue’ hypothesis: that polymorphic populations may include one morph that attracts the attention of predators and that polymorphic populations therefore may suffer increased predation compared with some monomorphic populations. PMID:19324729

  16. Shelf life of factitious hosts and effect of stored preys on the development of the green lace wing predator, Chrysoperla carnea (Stephens)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Viji, C.P.; Gautam, R.D.; Garg, A.K.

    2005-01-01

    Mass production of the green laceweing, Chrysoperla carnea (Stephens) in the laboratory is directly dependent on the mass production of its factitious host i.e., the eggs of Corcyra cephalonica. Production of host insects is often seasonal which, in turn, affects the mass rearing of chrysopids hence necessitates the storage of prey for mass production. Studies were carried out to determine the shelf life of the prey (viz., Tribolium castaneum larvae and papae, Trogoderma granarium larvae, Drosophila melanogaster larvae, Cadra cautella eggs and Corcyra cephalonica eggs) while storing it in freezer at 10-12 o C by exposing to UV and gamma radiations. T. castaneum larva and pupa could be stored in freezer chest for 6 and 8 months respectively, whereas C. cephalonica eggs could only be stored for a period of 30 days. The impact of storage on the biological attributes of the predator was studied. Effectiveness of stored food represented the order as uv irradiated + Frozen > γ-irradiated + Frozen > Frozen > UV irradiated > γ-irradiated. Even though, variations were observed on the development of predator larva on stored foods, they supported the development of the predator to a reasonable degree. (author)

  17. 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.

  18. Red fox predation on breeding ducks in midcontinent North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sargeant, Alan B.; Allen, Stephen H.; Eberhardt, Robert T.

    1984-01-01

    populations in that area. Of 5,402 individual food items found at dens in the intensive study area, 24% were adult ducks. Ducks made up an estimated maximum average of 16% of the prey biomass required by fox families during the denning season. The average annual take of adult ducks by foxes in the midcontinent area was estimated to be about 900,000. This estimate included both scavenged and fox-killed ducks, as well as ducks taken after the denning season. Fox impact on midcontinent ducks was greatest in eastern North Dakota where both fox and duck densities were relatively high. Predation in that area was likely increased by environmental factors, especially intensive agriculture that concentrated nesting and reduced prey abundance. Predation by red foxes and other predators severely reduces duck production in the midcontinent area. Effective management to increase waterfowl production will necessitate coping with or reducing high levels of predation.

  19. Inductions of reproduction and population growth in the generalist predator Cyrtorhinus lividipennis (Hemiptera: Miridae) exposed to sub-lethal concentrations of insecticides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Weiwei; Xu, Qiujing; Zhu, Jun; Liu, Chen; Ge, Linquan; Yang, Guoqing; Liu, Fang

    2017-08-01

    The miridbug, Cyrtorhinus lividipennis, is a significant predacious enemy of rice planthoppers. The effects of sub-lethal concentrations of triazophos, deltamethrin and imidacloprid on fecundity, egg hatchability, expression levels of genes associated with reproduction, and population growth in C. lividipennis were investigated. The fecundities for three pair combinations (♀ c × ♂ t , ♀ t × ♂ c and ♀ t × ♂ t ) treated with sub-lethal concentrations of the insecticides triazophos, deltamethrin and imidacloprid (LC 10 and LC 20 ) showed a significant increase compared to the untreated pairs (♀ c × ♂ c ). However, sub-lethal concentration treatments did not affect the egg hatchability. The ClVg expression levels of female adults exposed to triazophos, deltamethrin and imidacloprid (LC 20 ) increased by 52.6, 48.9 and 91.2%, respectively. The ClSPATA13 expression level of adult males exposed to triazophos, deltamethrim and imidacloprid (LC 20 ) increased by 80.7, 41.3 and 48.3%, respectively. Furthermore, sub-lethal concentrations of insecticides (LC 20 ) caused increased population numbers in C. lividipennis. Sub-lethal concentrations of triazophos, deltamethrin and imidacloprid stimulated reproduction and enhanced population growth of C. lividipennis. The reproductive stimulation might result from the up-regulation of ClVg or ClSPATA13. These findings may be useful in mediating populations of planthoppers. © 2017 Society of Chemical Industry. © 2017 Society of Chemical Industry.

  20. Population dynamics of interacting predatory mites, Phytoseiulus persimilis and Neoseiulus californicus, held on detached bean leaves.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walzer, A; Blümel, S; Schausberger, P

    2001-01-01

    The success of combined release of the predatory mites Phytoseiulus persimilis and Neoseiulus californicus in suppression of spider mites may be related to the effects of the interactions between the two predators on their population dynamics. We studied population growth and persistence of the specialist P persimilis and the generalist N. californicus reared singly versus reared in combination after simultaneous and successive predator introductions on detached bean leaf arenas with abundant prey, Tetranychus urticae. and with diminishing prey. When reared singly with abundant prey, either predator population persisted at high densities to the end of the experiment. In every predator combination system with abundant prey and various initial predator:predator ratios N. californicus displaced P persimilis. When held singly with diminishing prey, the population of P. persimilis grew initially faster than the population of N. californicus but both species reached similar population peaks. Irrespective whether reared singly or in combination. N. californicus persisted three to five times longer after prey depletion than did P. persimilis. Regarding the crucial interactions in the predator combination systems, we conclude that intraguild predation was a stronger force than food competition and finally resulted in the displacement of P. persimilis. Previous studies showed that intraguild predation between the specialist P. persimilis and the generalist N. californicus is strongly asymmetric favoring the generalist. We discuss the implications of potential interactions between P. persimilis and N. californicus to biological control of spider mites.

  1. 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

  2. The effect of pollen source vs. flower type on progeny performance and seed predation under contrasting light environments in a cleistogamous herb.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munguía-Rosas, Miguel A; Campos-Navarrete, María J; Parra-Tabla, Víctor

    2013-01-01

    Dimorphic cleistogamy is a specialized form of mixed mating system where a single plant produces both open, potentially outcrossed chasmogamous (CH) and closed, obligately self-pollinated cleistogamous (CL) flowers. Typically, CH flowers and seeds are bigger and energetically more costly than those of CL. Although the effects of inbreeding and floral dimorphism are critical to understanding the evolution and maintenance of cleistogamy, these effects have been repeatedly confounded. In an attempt to separate these effects, we compared the performance of progeny derived from the two floral morphs while controlling for the source of pollen. That is, flower type and pollen source effects were assessed by comparing the performance of progeny derived from selfed CH vs. CL and outcrossed CH vs. selfed CH flowers, respectively. The experiment was carried out with the herb Ruellia nudiflora under two contrasting light environments. Outcrossed progeny generally performed better than selfed progeny. However, inbreeding depression ranges from low (1%) to moderate (36%), with the greatest value detected under shaded conditions when cumulative fitness was used. Although flower type generally had less of an effect on progeny performance than pollen source did, the progeny derived from selfed CH flowers largely outperformed the progeny from CL flowers, but only under shaded conditions and when cumulative fitness was taken into account. On the other hand, the source of pollen and flower type influenced seed predation, with selfed CH progeny the most heavily attacked by predators. Therefore, the effects of pollen source and flower type are environment-dependant and seed predators may increase the genetic differences between progeny derived from CH and CL flowers. Inbreeding depression alone cannot account for the maintenance of a mixed mating system in R. nudiflora and other unidentified mechanisms must thus be involved.

  3. The effect of pollen source vs. flower type on progeny performance and seed predation under contrasting light environments in a cleistogamous herb.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miguel A Munguía-Rosas

    Full Text Available Dimorphic cleistogamy is a specialized form of mixed mating system where a single plant produces both open, potentially outcrossed chasmogamous (CH and closed, obligately self-pollinated cleistogamous (CL flowers. Typically, CH flowers and seeds are bigger and energetically more costly than those of CL. Although the effects of inbreeding and floral dimorphism are critical to understanding the evolution and maintenance of cleistogamy, these effects have been repeatedly confounded. In an attempt to separate these effects, we compared the performance of progeny derived from the two floral morphs while controlling for the source of pollen. That is, flower type and pollen source effects were assessed by comparing the performance of progeny derived from selfed CH vs. CL and outcrossed CH vs. selfed CH flowers, respectively. The experiment was carried out with the herb Ruellia nudiflora under two contrasting light environments. Outcrossed progeny generally performed better than selfed progeny. However, inbreeding depression ranges from low (1% to moderate (36%, with the greatest value detected under shaded conditions when cumulative fitness was used. Although flower type generally had less of an effect on progeny performance than pollen source did, the progeny derived from selfed CH flowers largely outperformed the progeny from CL flowers, but only under shaded conditions and when cumulative fitness was taken into account. On the other hand, the source of pollen and flower type influenced seed predation, with selfed CH progeny the most heavily attacked by predators. Therefore, the effects of pollen source and flower type are environment-dependant and seed predators may increase the genetic differences between progeny derived from CH and CL flowers. Inbreeding depression alone cannot account for the maintenance of a mixed mating system in R. nudiflora and other unidentified mechanisms must thus be involved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Křivan, Vlastimil

    2011-04-07

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

  5. The interactive effects of climate change, riparian management, and a non-native predators on stream-rearing salmon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawrence, David J.; Stewart-Koster, Ben; Olden, Julian D.; Ruesch, Aaron S.; Torgersen, Christian E.; Lawler, Joshua J.; Butcher, Don P.; Crown, Julia K.

    2014-01-01

    Predicting how climate change is likely to interact with myriad other stressors that threaten species of conservation concern is an essential challenge in aquatic ecosystems. This study provides a framework to accomplish this task in salmon-bearing streams of the northwestern United States, where land-use related reductions in riparian shading have caused changes in stream thermal regimes, and additional warming from projected climate change may result in significant losses of coldwater fish habitat over the next century. Predatory non-native smallmouth bass have also been introduced into many northwestern streams and their range is likely to expand as streams warm, presenting an additional challenge to the persistence of threatened Pacific salmon. The goal of this work was to forecast the interactive effects of climate change, riparian management, and non-native species on stream-rearing salmon, and to evaluate the capacity of restoration to mitigate these effects. We intersected downscaled global climate forecasts with a local-scale water temperature model to predict mid- and end-of-century temperatures in streams in the Columbia River basin; we compared one stream that is thermally impaired due to the loss of riparian vegetation and another that is cooler and has a largely intact riparian corridor. Using the forecasted stream temperatures in conjunction with fish-habitat models, we predicted how stream-rearing Chinook salmon and bass distributions would change as each stream warmed. In the highly modified stream, end-of-century warming may cause near total loss of Chinook salmon rearing habitat and a complete invasion of the upper watershed by bass. In the less modified stream, bass were thermally restricted from the upstream-most areas. In both systems, temperature increases resulted in higher predicted spatial overlap between stream-rearing Chinook salmon and potentially predatory bass in the early summer (2-4-fold increase) and greater abundance of bass. We

  6. The interactive effects of climate change, riparian management, and a nonnative predator on stream-rearing salmon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawrence, David J; Stewart-Koster, Ben; Olden, Julian D; Ruesch, Aaron S; Torgersen, Christian E; Lawler, Joshua J; Butcher, Don P; Crown, Julia K

    2014-06-01

    Predicting how climate change is likely to interact with myriad other stressors that threaten species of conservation concern is an essential challenge in aquatic ecosystems. This study provides a framework to accomplish this task in salmon-bearing streams of the northwestern United States, where land-use-related reductions in riparian shading have caused changes in stream thermal regimes, and additional warming from projected climate change may result in significant losses of coldwater fish habitat over the next century. Predatory, nonnative smallmouth bass have also been introduced into many northwestern streams, and their range is likely to expand as streams warm, presenting an additional challenge to the persistence of threatened Pacific salmon. The goal of this work was to forecast the interactive effects of climate change, riparian management, and nonnative species on stream-rearing salmon and to evaluate the capacity of restoration to mitigate these effects. We intersected downscaled global climate forecasts with a local-scale water temperature model to predict mid- and end-of-century temperatures in streams in the Columbia River basin. We compared one stream that is thermally impaired due to the loss of riparian vegetation and another that is cooler and has a largely intact riparian corridor. Using the forecasted stream temperatures in conjunction with fish-habitat models, we predicted how stream-rearing chinook salmon and bass distributions would change as each stream warmed. In the highly modified stream, end-of-century warming may cause near total loss of chinook salmon-rearing habitat and a complete invasion of the upper watershed by bass. In the less modified stream, bass were thermally restricted from the upstream-most areas. In both systems, temperature increases resulted in higher predicted spatial overlap between stream-rearing chinook salmon and potentially predatory bass in the early summer (two- to fourfold increase) and greater abundance of

  7. Effects of substrate type on growth and mortality of blue mussels ( Mytilus edulis ) exposed to the predator Carcinus maenas

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frandsen, Rikke; Dolmer, Per

    2002-01-01

    Structure and complexity of the substrate are important habitat characteristics for benthic epifauna. The specific growth and mortality rates and inducible defence characters on medium- sized blue mussels (Mytilus edulis L.) exposed to shore crabs (Carcinus maenas L.) were examined on three...... different substrate types in combined field and laboratory experiments. The experiments showed that complexity of the substrate increased blue mussel survival significantly, through a decrease in predation pressure. However, increased intraspecific competition for food on the complex substrate resulted...... in significantly lower growth rates of the mussels. Inducible defence characters were also influenced by substrate type. Blue mussels were more affected by predators on the structurally simple substrate, where they developed thicker shells and a larger posterior adductor muscle....

  8. Displacement effects of heavy human use on coral reef predators within the Molokini Marine Life Conservation District.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Filous, Alexander; Friedlander, Alan M; Koike, Haruko; Lammers, Marc; Wong, Adam; Stone, Kristy; Sparks, Russell T

    2017-08-15

    The impact of marine ecotourism on reef predators is poorly understood and there is growing concern that overcrowding in Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) may disturb the species that these areas were established to protect. To improve our understanding of this issue, we used acoustic telemetry to examine the relationship between human activity at the Molokini Marine Life Conservation District (MLCD) and the habitat use of five reef-associated predators (Caranx melampygus, Caranx ignobilis, Triaenodon obesus, Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos, and Aprion virscens). During peak hours of human use, there was a negative relationship (R 2 =0.77, P<0.001) between the presence of bluefin trevally (Caranx melampygus) and vessels in subzone A. No other species showed strong evidence of this relationship. However, our results suggest that during this time, the natural ecosystem function that the reserve was established to protect may be compromised and overcrowding should be considered when managing MPAs. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Effects of food abundance and early clutch predation on reproductive timing in a high Arctic shorebird exposed to advancements in arthropod abundance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Reneerkens, Jeroen; Schmidt, Niels Martin; Gilg, Olivier; Hansen, Jannik; Hansen, Lars Holst; Moreau, Jerome; Piersma, Theunis

    2016-01-01

    Climate change may influence the phenology of organisms unequally across trophic levels and thus lead to phenological mismatches between predators and prey. In cases where prey availability peaks before reproducing predators reach maximal prey demand, any negative fitness consequences would

  10. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aladeen Al Basheer

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Cannibalism, the act of killing and consumption of conspecifics, is generally considered to be a stabilising process in ODE models of predator-prey systems. On the other hand, Sun et al. were the first to show that cannibalism can cause Turing instability, in the classical Rosenzweig-McArthur two-species PDE model, which is an impossibility without cannibalism. Magnússon’s classic work is the first to show that cannibalism in a structured three-species predator-prey ODE model can actually be destabilising. In the current manuscript we consider the PDE form of the three-species model proposed in Magnússon’s classic work. We prove that, in the absence of cannibalism, Turing instability is an impossibility in this model, for any range of parameters. However, the inclusion of cannibalism can cause Turing instability. Thus, to the best of our knowledge, we report the first cannibalism induced Turing instability result, in spatially explicit three-species age structured predator-prey systems. We also show that, in the classical ODE model proposed by Magnússon, cannibalism can act as a life boat mechanism, for the prey.

  12. Saving the Predators: Teaching About the Role of Predatory Animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soltow, Willow

    1985-01-01

    Discusses the role of predators in regulating prey populations, noting that this is an excellent example of the "interconnectedness" of life. Suggestions for films, books, articles, and student questions are given, and a special section dealing with human attitudes about predators is provided. (DH)

  13. 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.

  14. Low leopard populations in protected areas of Maputaland: a consequence of poaching, habitat condition, abundance of prey, and a top predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramesh, Tharmalingam; Kalle, Riddhika; Rosenlund, Havard; Downs, Colleen T

    2017-03-01

    Identifying the primary causes affecting population densities and distribution of flagship species are necessary in developing sustainable management strategies for large carnivore conservation. We modeled drivers of spatial density of the common leopard ( Panthera pardus ) using a spatially explicit capture-recapture-Bayesian approach to understand their population dynamics in the Maputaland Conservation Unit, South Africa. We camera-trapped leopards in four protected areas (PAs) of varying sizes and disturbance levels covering 198 camera stations. Ours is the first study to explore the effects of poaching level, abundance of prey species (small, medium, and large), competitors (lion Panthera leo and spotted hyenas Crocuta crocuta ), and habitat on the spatial distribution of common leopard density. Twenty-six male and 41 female leopards were individually identified and estimated leopard density ranged from 1.6 ± 0.62/100 km 2 (smallest PA-Ndumo) to 8.4 ± 1.03/100 km 2 (largest PA-western shores). Although dry forest thickets and plantation habitats largely represented the western shores, the plantation areas had extremely low leopard density compared to native forest. We found that leopard density increased in areas when low poaching levels/no poaching was recorded in dry forest thickets and with high abundance of medium-sized prey, but decreased with increasing abundance of lion. Because local leopard populations are vulnerable to extinction, particularly in smaller PAs, the long-term sustainability of leopard populations depend on developing appropriate management strategies that consider a combination of multiple factors to maintain their optimal habitats.

  15. Intraguild predation between small pelagic fish in the Bay of Biscay: impact on anchovy (Engraulis encrasicolus L.) egg mortality

    KAUST Repository

    Bachiller, Eneko

    2015-05-12

    Small pelagic fish can play an important role in various ecosystems linking lower and upper trophic levels. Among the factor behind the observed inter-annual variations in small pelagic fish abundance, intra- and inter-specific trophic interactions could have a strong impact on the recruitment variability (e.g. anchovy). Egg cannibalism observed in anchovies has been postulated to be a mechanism that determines the upper limit of the population density and self-regulates the population abundance of the species. On the other hand, predation by other guild species is commonly considered as a regulation mechanism between competing species. This study provides empirical evidence of anchovy cannibalism and predation of the main small pelagic fish species on anchovy eggs and estimates the effect of intraguild predation on the anchovy egg mortality rate. Results show that, depending on the year (2008–2009), up to 33 % of the total anchovy egg mortality was the result of sardine predation and up to 4 % was the result of egg cannibalism together with predation by Atlantic and Atlantic Chub mackerel and sprat. Results also indicate that in the Bay of Biscay, fluctuations in the survival index of the early life stages of anchovy are likely to be attributable at least in part to egg cannibalism and especially to a high sardine predation on anchovy eggs. © 2015 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-09-01

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

  17. Increased noise levels have different impacts on the anti-predator behaviour of two sympatric fish species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Irene K Voellmy

    Full Text Available Animals must avoid predation to survive and reproduce, and there is increasing evidence that man-made (anthropogenic factors can influence predator-prey relationships. Anthropogenic noise has been shown to have a variety of effects on many species, but work investigating the impact on anti-predator behaviour is rare. In this laboratory study, we examined how additional noise (playback of field recordings of a ship passing through a harbour, compared with control conditions (playback of recordings from the same harbours without ship noise, affected responses to a visual predatory stimulus. We compared the anti-predator behaviour of two sympatric fish species, the three-spined stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus and the European minnow (Phoxinus phoxinus, which share similar feeding and predator ecologies, but differ in their body armour. Effects of additional-noise playbacks differed between species: sticklebacks responded significantly more quickly to the visual predatory stimulus during additional-noise playbacks than during control conditions, while minnows exhibited no significant change in their response latency. Our results suggest that elevated noise levels have the potential to affect anti-predator behaviour of different species in different ways. Future field-based experiments are needed to confirm whether this effect and the interspecific difference exist in relation to real-world noise sources, and to determine survival and population consequences.

  18. The effects of harvest on waterfowl populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooch, Evan G.; Guillemain, Matthieu; Boomer, G Scott; Lebreton, Jean-Dominique; Nichols, James D.

    2014-01-01

    Change in the size of populations over space and time is, arguably, the motivation for much of pure and applied ecological research. The fundamental model for the dynamics of any population is straightforward: the net change in the abundance is the simple difference between the number of individuals entering the population and the number leaving the population, either or both of which may change in response to factors intrinsic and extrinsic to the population. While harvest of individuals from a population constitutes a clear extrinsic source of removal of individuals, the response of populations to harvest is frequently complex, reflecting an interaction of harvest with one or more population processes. Here we consider the role of these interactions, and factors influencing them, on the effective harvest management of waterfowl populations. We review historical ideas concerning harvest and discuss the relationship(s) between waterfowl life histories and the development and application of population models to inform harvest management. The influence of population structure (age, spatial) on derivation of optimal harvest strategies (with and without explicit consideration of various sources of uncertainty) is considered. In addition to population structure, we discuss how the optimal harvest strategy may be influenced by: 1) patterns of density-dependence in one or more vital rates, and 2) heterogeneity in vital rates among individuals within an age-sex-size class. Although derivation of the optimal harvest strategy for simple population models (with or without structure) is generally straightforward, there are several potential difficulties in application. In particular, uncertainty concerning the population structure at the time of harvest, and the ability to regulate the structure of the harvest itself, are significant complications. We therefore review the evidence of effects of harvest on waterfowl populations. Some of this evidence has

  19. COMPANION ANIMALS SYMPOSIUM: Sustainable Ecosystems: Domestic cats and their effect on wildlife populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kitts-Morgan, S E

    2015-03-01

    Domestic cats are estimated to kill billions of small mammals and birds each year. In certain areas of the world, it is not uncommon for either feral or free-ranging cats to have high population densities, creating concern regarding their level of hunting. Many cats are considered to be subsidized predators, as they receive care and food from humans. Arguments abound regarding the presence of cats in the habitats of native small mammals and birds and whether or not local ecosystems can sustain this predator-prey relationship. The effects of cats on native wildlife can depend on several factors, including cat classification (feral vs. free ranging vs. indoor-outdoor), geographical location (islands vs. mainland), and type of habitat (rural vs. suburban vs. urban). Feral and free-ranging cats may have a greater impact on native species on islands because habitat is severely limited. Continued urbanization and development of rural areas also creates fragmented habitats, and native species may struggle to survive with the added pressure of hunting by domestic cats. Additionally, cats in rural areas are frequently fed by humans, which can support high population densities and intensify pressure on native species. Species targeted by cats may also vary based on prey availability in different areas, but small mammals are generally preferred over birds, reptiles, or invertebrates. Domestic cats certainly have the potential to roam and hunt in very large areas inhabited by native species and loss of biodiversity is a major concern. Therefore, it is possible that ecosystems may not be able to sustain hunting by domestic cats. Because this predator-prey relationship is probably not sustainable, it is necessary to responsibly manage outdoor domestic cats.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

  1. Microhabitat choice in island lizards enhances camouflage against avian predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marshall, Kate L A; Philpot, Kate E; Stevens, Martin

    2016-01-25

    Camouflage can often be enhanced by genetic adaptation to different local environments. However, it is less clear how individual behaviour improves camouflage effectiveness. We investigated whether individual Aegean wall lizards (Podarcis erhardii) inhabiting different islands rest on backgrounds that improve camouflage against avian predators. In free-ranging lizards, we found that dorsal regions were better matched against chosen backgrounds than against other backgrounds on the same island. This suggests that P. erhardii make background choices that heighten individual-specific concealment. In achromatic camouflage, this effect was more evident in females and was less distinct in an island population with lower predation risk. This suggests that behavioural enhancement of camouflage may be more important in females than in sexually competing males and related to predation risk. However, in an arena experiment, lizards did not choose the background that improved camouflage, most likely due to the artificial conditions. Overall, our results provide evidence that behavioural preferences for substrates can enhance individual camouflage of lizards in natural microhabitats, and that such adaptations may be sexually dimorphic and dependent on local environments. This research emphasizes the importance of considering links between ecology, behaviour, and appearance in studies of intraspecific colour variation and local adaptation.

  2. Nano-formulation enhances insecticidal activity of natural pyrethrins against Aphis gossypii (Hemiptera: Aphididae) and retains their harmless effect to non-target predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papanikolaou, Nikos E; Kalaitzaki, Argyro; Karamaouna, Filitsa; Michaelakis, Antonios; Papadimitriou, Vassiliki; Dourtoglou, Vassilis; Papachristos, Dimitrios P

    2018-04-01

    The insecticidal activity of a new nano-formulated natural pyrethrin was examined on the cotton aphid, Aphis gossypii Glover (Hemiptera: Aphididae), and the predators Coccinella septempunctata L. (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) and Macrolophus pygmaeus Rambur (Hemiptera: Miridae), in respect with the nano-scale potential to create more effective and environmentally responsible pesticides. Pyrethrin was nano-formulated in two water-in-oil micro-emulsions based on safe biocompatible materials, i.e., lemon oil terpenes as dispersant, polysorbates as stabilizers, and mixtures of water with glycerol as the dispersed aqueous phase. Laboratory bioassays showed a superior insecticidal effect of the pyrethrin micro-emulsions compared to two commercial suspension concentrates of natural pyrethrins against the aphid. The nano-formulated pyrethrins were harmless, in terms of caused mortality and survival time, to L3 larvae and four-instar nymphs of the predators C. septempunctata and M. pygmaeus, respectively. We expect that these results can contribute to the application of nano-technology in optimization of pesticide formulation, with further opportunities in the development of effective plant protection products compatible with integrated pest management practices.

  3. Spatial processes decouple management from objectives in a heterogeneous landscape: predator control as a case study.

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    Mahoney, Peter J; Young, Julie K; Hersey, Kent R; Larsen, Randy T; McMillan, Brock R; Stoner, David C

    2018-04-01

    Predator control is often implemented with the intent of disrupting top-down regulation in sensitive prey populations. However, ambiguity surrounding the efficacy of predator management, as well as the strength of top-down effects of predators in general, is often exacerbated by the spatially implicit analytical approaches used in assessing data with explicit spatial structure. Here, we highlight the importance of considering spatial context in the case of a predator control study in south-central Utah. We assessed the spatial match between aerial removal risk in coyotes (Canis latrans) and mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) resource selection during parturition using a spatially explicit, multi-level Bayesian model. With our model, we were able to evaluate spatial congruence between management action (i.e., coyote removal) and objective (i.e., parturient deer site selection) at two distinct scales: the level of the management unit and the individual coyote removal. In the case of the former, our results indicated substantial spatial heterogeneity in expected congruence between removal risk and parturient deer site selection across large areas, and is a reflection of logistical constraints acting on the management strategy and differences in space use between the two species. At the level of the individual removal, we demonstrated that the potential management benefits of a removed coyote were highly variable across all individuals removed and in many cases, spatially distinct from parturient deer resource selection. Our methods and results provide a means of evaluating where we might anticipate an impact of predator control, while emphasizing the need to weight individual removals based on spatial proximity to management objectives in any assessment of large-scale predator control. Although we highlight the importance of spatial context in assessments of predator control strategy, we believe our methods are readily generalizable in any management or large

  4. Behavioural and physiological responses of limpet prey to a seastar predator and their transmission to basal trophic levels.

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    Manzur, Tatiana; Vidal, Francisco; Pantoja, José F; Fernández, Miriam; Navarrete, Sergio A

    2014-07-01

    Besides the well-documented behavioural changes induced by predators on prey, predator-induced stress can also include a suite of biochemical, neurological and metabolic changes that may represent important energetic costs and have long-lasting effects on individuals and on the demography of prey populations. The rapid transmission of prey behavioural changes to lower trophic levels, usually associated with alteration of feeding rates, can substantially change and even reverse direction over the long term as prey cope with the energetic costs associated with predation-induced stress. It is therefore critical to evaluate different aspects and assess the costs of non-consumptive predator effects on prey. We investigated the behavioural and physiological responses of an herbivorous limpet, Fissurella limbata, to the presence of chemical cues and direct non-lethal contact by the common seastar predator, Heliaster helianthus. We also evaluated whether the limpets feeding behaviour was modified by the predator and whether this translated into positive or negative effects on biomass of the green alga, Ulva sp. Our experimental results show the presence of Heliaster led to increased movement activity, increased distances travelled, changes in time budget over different environmental conditions and increased feeding rate in the keyhole limpets. Moreover, additional experiments showed that, beyond the increased metabolic rate associated with limpet increased activity, predator chemical cues heighten metabolic rate as part of the induced stress response. Changes in individual movement and displacement distances observed through the 9-day experiment can be interpreted as part of the escape response exhibited by limpets to reduce the risk of being captured by the predator. Increased limpet feeding rate on algae can be visualized as a way individuals compensate for the elevated energetic costs of movement and heightened metabolic rates produced by the predator-induced stress

  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. 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

  7. Effects of population outcrossing on rotifer fitness

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    Background Outcrossing between populations can exert either positive or negative effects on offspring fitness. Cyclically parthenogenetic rotifers, like other continental zooplankters, show high genetic differentiation despite their high potential for passive dispersal. Within this context, the effects of outcrossing may be relevant in modulating gene flow between populations through selection for or against interpopulation hybrids. Nevertheless, these effects remain practically unexplored in rotifers. Here, the consequences of outcrossing on the rotifer Brachionus plicatilis were investigated. Cross-mating experiments were performed between a reference population and three alternative populations that differed in their genetic distance with regard to the former. Two offspring generations were obtained: F1 and BC ('backcross'). Fitness of the outcrossed offspring was compared with fitness of the offspring of the reference population for both generations and for three different between-population combinations. Four fitness components were measured throughout the rotifer life cycle: the diapausing egg-hatching proportion, clone viability (for the clones originating from diapausing eggs), initial net growth rate R for each viable clone, and the proportion of male-producing clones. Additionally, both the parental fertilisation proportion and a compound fitness measure, integrating the complete life cycle, were estimated. Results In the F1 generation, hybrid vigour was detected for the diapausing egg-hatching proportion, while R was lower in the outcrossed offspring than in the offspring of the reference population. Despite these contrasting results, hybrid vigour was globally observed for the compound measure of fitness. Moreover, there was evidence that this vigour could increase with the genetic differentiation of the outcrossed populations. In the BC generation, the hybrid vigour detected for the egg-hatching proportion in the F1 generation reverted to outbreeding

  8. Effects of population outcrossing on rotifer fitness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Serra Manuel

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Outcrossing between populations can exert either positive or negative effects on offspring fitness. Cyclically parthenogenetic rotifers, like other continental zooplankters, show high genetic differentiation despite their high potential for passive dispersal. Within this context, the effects of outcrossing may be relevant in modulating gene flow between populations through selection for or against interpopulation hybrids. Nevertheless, these effects remain practically unexplored in rotifers. Here, the consequences of outcrossing on the rotifer Brachionus plicatilis were investigated. Cross-mating experiments were performed between a reference population and three alternative populations that differed in their genetic distance with regard to the former. Two offspring generations were obtained: F1 and BC ('backcross'. Fitness of the outcrossed offspring was compared with fitness of the offspring of the reference population for both generations and for three different between-population combinations. Four fitness components were measured throughout the rotifer life cycle: the diapausing egg-hatching proportion, clone viability (for the clones originating from diapausing eggs, initial net growth rate R for each viable clone, and the proportion of male-producing clones. Additionally, both the parental fertilisation proportion and a compound fitness measure, integrating the complete life cycle, were estimated. Results In the F1 generation, hybrid vigour was detected for the diapausing egg-hatching proportion, while R was lower in the outcrossed offspring than in the offspring of the reference population. Despite these contrasting results, hybrid vigour was globally observed for the compound measure of fitness. Moreover, there was evidence that this vigour could increase with the genetic differentiation of the outcrossed populations. In the BC generation, the hybrid vigour detected for the egg-hatching proportion in the F1

  9. Adaptations for marine habitat and the effect of Triassic and Jurassic predator pressure on development of decompression syndrome in ichthyosaurs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothschild, B. M.; Xiaoting, Z.; Martin, L. D.

    2012-06-01

    Decompression syndrome (caisson disease or the "the bends") resulting in avascular necrosis has been documented in mosasaurs, sauropterygians, ichthyosaurs, and turtles from the Middle Jurassic to Late Cretaceous, but it was unclear that this disease occurred as far back as the Triassic. We have examined a large Triassic sample of ichthyosaurs and compared it with an equally large post-Triassic sample. Avascular necrosis was observed in over 15 % of Late Middle Jurassic to Cretaceous ichthyosaurs with the highest occurrence (18 %) in the Early Cretaceous, but was rare or absent in geologically older specimens. Triassic reptiles that dive were either physiologically protected, or rapid changes of their position in the water column rare and insignificant enough to prevent being recorded in the skeleton. Emergency surfacing due to a threat from an underwater predator may be the most important cause of avascular necrosis for air-breathing divers, with relative frequency of such events documented in the skeleton. Diving in the Triassic appears to have been a "leisurely" behavior until the evolution of large predators in the Late Jurassic that forced sudden depth alterations contributed to a higher occurrence of bends.

  10. Seed dispersers, seed predators, and browsers act synergistically as biotic filters in a mosaic landscape.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Regino Zamora

    Full Text Available In this study, we analize the functional influence of animals on the plants they interact with in a mediterranean mountain. We hypothesise that seed dispersers, seed predators, and browsers can act as biotic filters for plant communities. We analyse the combined effects of mutualistic (seed dispersal and antagonistic (seed predation, herbivory animal interactions in a mosaic landscape of Mediterranean mountains, basing our results on observational and experimental field. Most of the dispersed seeds came from tree species, whereas the population of saplings was composed predominantly of zoochorous shrub species. Seed predators preferentially consumed seeds from tree species, whereas seeds from the dominant fleshy-fruited shrubs had a higher probability of escaping these predators. The same pattern was repeated among the different landscape units by browsers, since they browsed selectively and far more intensely on tree-species saplings than on the surrounding shrubs. In synthesis, our work identifies the major biotic processes that appear to be favoring a community dominated by shrubs versus trees because seed dispersers, predators<