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Sample records for prey igp differs

  1. MARVEL om de effecten van IGP in kaart te brengen

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hengst-Bruggeling, M. den; Heesmans, S.; Graaf, H.A.L.M. de

    2010-01-01

    Informatiegestuurde politie betekent dat op basis van actuele en betrouwbare informatie en analyses, rationele keuzes worden gemaakt, waardoor mensen en middelen optimaal kunnen worden ingezet en de bedrijfsdoelen worden bereikt. Een belangrijke reden om informatiegestuurde politie (IGP) te

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yoel E Stuart

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

  3. Rail inspection system based on iGPS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fu, Xiaoyan; Wang, Mulan; Wen, Xiuping

    2018-05-01

    Track parameters include gauge, super elevation, cross level and so on, which could be calculated through the three-dimensional coordinates of the track. The rail inspection system based on iGPS (indoor/infrared GPS) was composed of base station, receiver, rail inspection frame, wireless communication unit, display and control unit and data processing unit. With the continuous movement of the inspection frame, the system could accurately inspect the coordinates of rail; realize the intelligent detection and precision measurement. According to principle of angle intersection measurement, the inspection model was structured, and detection process was given.

  4. Intraguild Predation Responses in Two Aphidophagous Coccinellids Identify Differences among Juvenile Stages and Aphid Densities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rondoni, Gabriele; Ielo, Fulvio; Ricci, Carlo; Conti, Eric

    2014-12-08

    (1) Intraguild predation (IGP) can occur among aphidophagous predators thus reducing their effectiveness in controlling crop pests. Among ladybirds, Coccinella septempunctata L. and Hippodamia variegata Goeze are the most effective predators upon Aphis gossypii Glov., which is an economically important pest of melon. Understanding their likelihood to engage in reciprocal predation is a key point for conservation of biological control. Here, we aim to investigate, under laboratory conditions, the level of IGP between the two above mentioned aphidophagous species. (2) Fourth-instars of the two species were isolated in petri dishes with combinations of different stages of the heterospecific ladybird and different densities of A. gossypii. The occurrence of IGP events was recorded after six hours. (3) C. septempunctata predated H. variegata at a higher rate than vice versa (70% vs. 43% overall). Higher density of the aphid or older juvenile stage of the IG-prey (22% of fourth instars vs. 74% of eggs and second instars) reduces the likelihood of predation. (4) To our knowledge, IGP between C. septempunctata and H. variegata was investigated for the first time. Results represent a baseline, necessary to predict the likelihood of IGP occurrence in the field.

  5. Lévy flight and Brownian search patterns of a free-ranging predator reflect different prey field characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sims, David W; Humphries, Nicolas E; Bradford, Russell W; Bruce, Barry D

    2012-03-01

    1. Search processes play an important role in physical, chemical and biological systems. In animal foraging, the search strategy predators should use to search optimally for prey is an enduring question. Some models demonstrate that when prey is sparsely distributed, an optimal search pattern is a specialised random walk known as a Lévy flight, whereas when prey is abundant, simple Brownian motion is sufficiently efficient. These predictions form part of what has been termed the Lévy flight foraging hypothesis (LFF) which states that as Lévy flights optimise random searches, movements approximated by optimal Lévy flights may have naturally evolved in organisms to enhance encounters with targets (e.g. prey) when knowledge of their locations is incomplete. 2. Whether free-ranging predators exhibit the movement patterns predicted in the LFF hypothesis in response to known prey types and distributions, however, has not been determined. We tested this using vertical and horizontal movement data from electronic tagging of an apex predator, the great white shark Carcharodon carcharias, across widely differing habitats reflecting different prey types. 3. Individual white sharks exhibited movement patterns that predicted well the prey types expected under the LFF hypothesis. Shark movements were best approximated by Brownian motion when hunting near abundant, predictable sources of prey (e.g. seal colonies, fish aggregations), whereas movements approximating truncated Lévy flights were present when searching for sparsely distributed or potentially difficult-to-detect prey in oceanic or shelf environments, respectively. 4. That movement patterns approximated by truncated Lévy flights and Brownian behaviour were present in the predicted prey fields indicates search strategies adopted by white sharks appear to be the most efficient ones for encountering prey in the habitats where such patterns are observed. This suggests that C. carcharias appears capable of exhibiting

  6. Climate-induced trends in predator–prey synchrony differ across life-history stages of an anadromous salmonid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bell, Donovan A.; Kovach, Ryan; Vulstek, Scott C.; Joyce, John E.; Tallmon, David A.

    2017-01-01

    Differential climate-induced shifts in phenology can create mismatches between predators and prey, but few studies have examined predator–prey mismatch across multiple life-history stages. We used long-term data from a warming stream with shifting salmonid migration timings to quantify intra-annual migration synchrony between predatory Dolly Varden (Salvelinus malma) and Pacific salmon prey and examined how predator–prey synchrony has been influenced by climate change. We demonstrate that Dolly Varden have become increasingly mismatched with spring downstream migrations of abundant pink salmon (Oncorhynchus gorbuscha) juveniles. However, Dolly Varden have remained matched with fall upstream migrations of spawning Pacific salmon, including coho (Oncorhynchus kisutch), sockeye (Oncorhynchus nerka), and pink salmon. Downstream predator–prey migration synchrony decreased over time and with higher temperatures, particularly with pink salmon. In contrast, upstream migration synchrony was temporally stable and increased with rising temperatures. Differing trends in Dolly Varden predator–prey synchrony may be explained by the direct use of salmon to cue upstream migration, but not downstream migration. Overall, we show that climate change can have differing impacts on predator–prey synchrony across life-history stages.

  7. Prey nutrient composition has different effects on Pardosa wolf spiders with dissimilar life histories

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Kim; Mayntz, David; Toft, Søren

    2011-01-01

    The nutritional composition of prey is known to influence predator life histories, but how the life history strategies of predators affect their susceptibility to nutrient imbalance is less investigated. We used two wolf spider species with different life histories as model predators: Pardosa...... amentata, which have a fixed annual life cycle, and Pardosa prativaga, which reproduce later and can extend development across 2 years. We fed juvenile spiders of the two species ad libitum diets of one of six Drosophila melanogaster fly types varying in lipid:protein composition during three instars, from...

  8. Predatory functional response and prey choice identify predation differences between native/invasive and parasitised/unparasitised crayfish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haddaway, Neal R; Wilcox, Ruth H; Heptonstall, Rachael E A; Griffiths, Hannah M; Mortimer, Robert J G; Christmas, Martin; Dunn, Alison M

    2012-01-01

    Invasive predators may change the structure of invaded communities through predation and competition with native species. In Europe, the invasive signal crayfish Pacifastacus leniusculus is excluding the native white clawed crayfish Austropotamobius pallipes. This study compared the predatory functional responses and prey choice of native and invasive crayfish and measured impacts of parasitism on the predatory strength of the native species. Invasive crayfish showed a higher (>10%) prey (Gammarus pulex) intake rate than (size matched) natives, reflecting a shorter (16%) prey handling time. The native crayfish also showed greater selection for crustacean prey over molluscs and bloodworm, whereas the invasive species was a more generalist predator. A. pallipes parasitised by the microsporidian parasite Thelohania contejeani showed a 30% reduction in prey intake. We suggest that this results from parasite-induced muscle damage, and this is supported by a reduced (38%) attack rate and increased (30%) prey handling time. Our results indicate that the per capita (i.e., functional response) difference between the species may contribute to success of the invader and extinction of the native species, as well as decreased biodiversity and biomass in invaded rivers. In addition, the reduced predatory strength of parasitized natives may impair their competitive abilities, facilitating exclusion by the invader.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-01-01

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

  11. Relationship between aerosol and lightning over Indo-Gangetic Plain (IGP), India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lal, D. M.; Ghude, Sachin D.; Mahakur, M.; Waghmare, R. T.; Tiwari, S.; Srivastava, Manoj K.; Meena, G. S.; Chate, D. M.

    2017-08-01

    The relationship between aerosol and lightning over the Indo-Gangetic Plain (IGP), India has been evaluated by utilising aerosol optical depth (AOD), cloud droplet effective radius and cloud fraction from Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer. Lightning flashes have been observed by the lightning Imaging sensor on the board of Tropical Rainfall and Measuring Mission and humidity from modern-era retrospective-analysis for research and applications for the period of 2001-2012. In this study, the role of aerosol in lightning generation over the north-west sector of IGP has been revealed. It is found that lightning activity increases (decreases) with increasing aerosols during normal (deficient) monsoon rainfall years. However, lightning increases with increasing aerosol during deficient rainfall years when the average value of AOD is less than 0.88. We have found that during deficient rainfall years the moisture content of the atmosphere and cloud fraction is smaller than that during the years with normal or excess monsoon rainfall over the north-west IGP. Over the north-east Bay of Bengal and its adjoining region the variations of moisture and cloud fraction between the deficient and normal rainfall years are minimal. We have found that the occurrence of the lightning over this region is primarily due to its topography and localised circulation. The warm-dry air approaching from north-west converges with moist air emanating from the Bay of Bengal causing instability that creates an environment for deep convective cloud and lightning. The relationship between lightning and aerosol is stronger over the north-west sector of IGP than the north-east, whereas it is moderate over the central IGP. We conclude that aerosol is playing a major role in lightning activity over the north-west sector of IGP, but, local meteorological conditions such as convergences of dry and moist air is the principal cause of lightning over the north-east sector of IGP. In addition

  12. A model for the description of feeding regulation by mesozooplankton under different conditions of temperature and prey nutritional status

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Acheampong, Emmanuel; Acheampong, Emmanuel; Hense, Inga

    2014-01-01

    Ecosystem modelling studies that consider mesozooplankton feeding regulation have primarily focused on the impact of prey nutritional status and temperature separately, despite experimental evidence for strong links between these two factors. Here, we propose a method based on optimal feeding...... behaviour of individual mesozooplankton that can be used to derive acclimative food ingestion, assimilation, and respiration under different temperature and food conditions. In the model, animals first evaluate the nutritional value of prey organisms based on their temperature-specific demand for energy...... support and extend conclusions previously obtained for mesozooplankton and indicate that ocean warming could alter the role of Acartia spp. in planktonic food webs. © 2013 Elsevier B.V....

  13. Metabolic rate of spiders (Pardosa prativage) feed on prey species of different diet quality measured by colorimetry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Søren Achim; Kynde, Bjarke; Westh, Peter

    The metabolic rate was measured in the wolf spider Pardosa prativaga after preying different species of aphids, collembolans and fruit flies raised on common commercial medium. The activity of detoxification enzyme systems Glutathione S-Transferase (GST), Glutathione Peroxidase (GSTpx) was invest......The metabolic rate was measured in the wolf spider Pardosa prativaga after preying different species of aphids, collembolans and fruit flies raised on common commercial medium. The activity of detoxification enzyme systems Glutathione S-Transferase (GST), Glutathione Peroxidase (GSTpx......) was investigated for spiders preying the different species. The heat production of starved P. prativaga was ca. 1.5 mW per mg fresh weight. For specimens feed on fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster) the heat production was appreciable higher whereas feed on the aphids Sitobion avenae and Rhopalosiphum padi...... the heat production was on the same level or lower than in the staved spiders. The variation of the observed metabolic changes was in concordance with the variations in enzyme activities....

  14. Green IGP Link Weights for Energy-efficiency and Load-balancing in IP Backbone Networks

    OpenAIRE

    Francois, Frederic; Wang, Ning; Moessner, Klaus; Georgoulas, Stylianos; Xu, Ke

    2013-01-01

    The energy consumption of backbone networks has become a primary concern for network operators and regulators due to the pervasive deployment of wired backbone networks to meet the requirements of bandwidth-hungry applications. While traditional optimization of IGP link weights has been used in IP based load-balancing operations, in this paper we introduce a novel link weight setting algorithm, the Green Load-balancing Algorithm (GLA), which is able to jointly optimize both energy efficiency ...

  15. Commissioning of the iGp Feedback System at DAΦNE

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Drago, A.; Fox, J.D.; Teytelman, D.; Tobiyama, M.

    2011-01-01

    The iGp (Integrated Gigasample Processor) is an innovative digital bunch-by-bunch feedback system developed by a KEK / SLAC / INFN-LNF joint collaboration. The processing unit can sample at 500 MHz and compute the bunch-by-bunch output signal for up to ∼5000 bunches. The feedback gateware code is implemented inside just one FPGA (Field Programmable Gate Array) chip, a Xilinx Virtex-II. The FPGA implements two banks of 16-tap FIR (Finite Impulse Response) filters. Each filter is realtime programmable through the operator interface. At DAΦNE, the Frascati Φ-Factory, two iGp units have been commissioned in the April 2007. The iGp systems have substituted the previous betatron feedback systems. This insertion has been very fast and has shown no problems involving just a substitution of the old, less flexible, digital systems, letting unchanged the baseband analog frontend and backend. The commissioning has been very simple, due to the complete and powerful EPICS operator interface, working well in local and remote operations. The software includes also tools for analyzing post processor data. A description of the commissioning with the operations done is reported.

  16. 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

  17. Reproductive performance of the generalist predator Hypoaspis aculeifer (Acari: Gamasida) when foraging on different invertebrate prey

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Heckmann, Lars-Henrik; Ruf, A.; Nienstedt, K. M.

    2007-01-01

    (Caloglyphus cf. Michaeli), an oligochaete (Enchytraeus crypticus), a nematode (Turbatrix silusiae), and a 1:1:1 mix of F. candida : F. fimetaria : E. crypticus. Our results revealed that a single prey species may be nutritionally sufficient for a 3-week period, as H. aculeifer performed equally well......, or better, on a diet based on a 1:1:1 mix of F. candida : F. fimetaria : E. crypticus. However, when fed C. cf. michaeli, H. aculeifer had a poor reproductive output (... performance during toxicant exposure....

  18. Prey diversity is affected by climate and differs between age classes in the Red-backed Shrike (Lanius collurio)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Lykke; Geertsma, Marten; Tøttrup, Anders P.

    2012-01-01

    -backed Shrike (Lanius collurio) populations in Denmark, based onmore than 11,000 prey items covering seven years.We found a negative correlation between prey diversity and temperature, indicating that Red-backed Shrikes feed on preferred prey items in warmer summers (low diversity)while forced to feed...

  19. The Allometry of Prey Preferences

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-01-01

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

  20. The allometry of prey preferences.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gregor Kalinkat

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

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. Functional variability of snake venom metalloproteinases: adaptive advantages in targeting different prey and implications for human envenomation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juliana L Bernardoni

    Full Text Available Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs are major components in most viperid venoms that induce disturbances in the hemostatic system and tissues of animals envenomated by snakes. These disturbances are involved in human pathology of snake bites and appear to be essential for the capture and digestion of snake's prey and avoidance of predators. SVMPs are a versatile family of venom toxins acting on different hemostatic targets which are present in venoms in distinct structural forms. However, the reason why a large number of different SVMPs are expressed in some venoms is still unclear. In this study, we evaluated the interference of five isolated SVMPs in blood coagulation of humans, birds and small rodents. P-III class SVMPs (fractions Ic, IIb and IIc possess gelatinolytic and hemorrhagic activities, and, of these, two also show fibrinolytic activity. P-I class SVMPs (fractions IVa and IVb are only fibrinolytic. P-III class SVMPs reduced clotting time of human plasma. Fraction IIc was characterized as prothrombin activator and fraction Ic as factor X activator. In the absence of Ca2+, a firm clot was observed in chicken blood samples with fractions Ic, IIb and partially with fraction IIc. In contrast, without Ca2+, only fraction IIc was able to induce a firm clot in rat blood. In conclusion, functionally distinct forms of SVMPs were found in B. neuwiedi venom that affect distinct mechanisms in the coagulation system of humans, birds and small rodents. Distinct SVMPs appear to be more specialized to rat or chicken blood, strengthening the current hypothesis that toxin diversity enhances the possibilities of the snakes for hunting different prey or evading different predators. This functional diversity also impacts the complexity of human envenoming since different hemostatic mechanisms will be targeted by SVMPs accounting for the complexity of the response of humans to venoms.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David P Hocking

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

  5. The existence of Sumatran tiger (Panthera tigris sumatrae Pocock, 1929 and their prey in different forest habitat types in Kerinci Seblat National Park, Sumatra

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    YOAN DINATA

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available A study on the relationships between prey animals and the occurence of sumatran tiger was conducted in Kerinci Seblat National Park, western Sumatra from May up to September 2001. The data have been collected from eight study sites based on the forest habitat types and its threats. The results showed that frequency of encounters with prey animals in different forest habitats were no difference. This might indicates that the prey animals were distributed fairly in all types of forest habitat. The frequency encounters of the sumatran tiger signs, however, have shown differently between locations. The encounters of tiger signs were more frequent in the forest habitats that close to the streams; in forest habitats with few animal huntings; and in forest habitats with no logging activities. This findings support the hypotheses that the existence of sumatran tiger as a predator is determined by the dense vegetations surrounding streams as hiding place used in an ambush; availability of prey animals as food, and habitat disturbances as shown by logging.

  6. L'huile d'argan du Maroc, première IGP africaine | CRDI - Centre de ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    8 oct. 2010 ... La Commission nationale des signes distinctifs d'origine et de qualité (CNSDOQ) du Maroc a attribué l'appellation IGP (indication géographique protégée) à l'huile d'argan, appréciée depuis longtemps pour ses vertus nutritives, cosmétiques et médicinales. Le roi Mohammed VI a remis au groupe ...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexis Garland

    2014-08-01

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

  8. 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...

  9. Sub-indicator: Prey fish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weidel, Brian C.; Dunlop, Erin

    2017-01-01

    Prey fish communities across the Great Lakes continue to change, although the direction and magnitude of those changes are not consistent across the lakes. The metrics used to categorize prey fish status in this and previous periods are based on elements that are common among each of the lake’s Fish Community Objectives and include diversity and the relative role of native species in the prey fish communities. The diversity index categorized three of lakes as ‘fair’, while Superior and Erie were ‘good’ (Table 1). The short term trend, from the previous period (2008-2010) to the current period (2011-2014) found diversity in Erie and Superior to be unchanging, but the other three lakes to be ‘deteriorating’, resulting in an overall trend categorization of ‘undetermined’ (Table 1). The long term diversity trend suggested Lakes Superior and Erie have the most diverse prey communities although the index for those prey fish have been quite variable over time (Figure 1). In Lake Huron, where non-native alewife have substantially declined, the diversity index has also declined. The continued dominance of alewife in Lake Ontario (96% of the prey fish biomass) resulted in the lowest diversity index value (Figure 1). The proportion of native species within the community was judged as ‘good’ in Lakes Superior and Huron, ‘fair’ in Michigan and Erie and ‘poor’ in Ontario (Table 2). The short term trend was improving in in all lakes except Michigan (‘deteriorating’) and Ontario (‘unchanging’), resulting in an overall short term trend of ‘undetermined’ (Table 2). Over the current period, Lake Superior consistently had the highest proportion native prey fish (87%) while Lake Ontario had the lowest (1%) (Figure 2). Lake Michigan’s percent native has declined as round goby increase and comprises a greater proportion of the community. Native prey fish make up 51% of Lake Erie, although basin-specific values differed (Figure 2). Most notably

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    1996-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaomei Feng

    2014-01-01

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

  12. 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

  13. Are the dynamics of gastric evacuation of natural prey in a piscivorous flatfish different from what is going on in a gadoid?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Krog, C.; Andersen, Niels Gerner

    2009-01-01

    Despite the fact that the stomach of turbot Psetta maxima is a curved tube that forms a half circle, it was demonstrated that gastric evacuation in this predatory flatfish fed natural prey closely followed the surface-dependent cylinder model developed from studies on gadoids with a straight...... stomach. Evacuation experiments were performed on two size groups of P. maxima fed sandeel Ammodytes tobianus as well as on P. maxima fed brown shrimp Crangon crangon at three different temperatures. This enabled the provision of a gastric evacuation model for studies on P. maxima, which takes...... with the conclusion of a previous study on P. maxima that evacuation of A. tobianus is essentially linear with time. Use of the cylinder model to the values of the explanatory variables presented in the latter study, however, gave accurate predictions of the actually acquired evacuation data, which points...

  14. Optimal intermittent search strategies: smelling the prey

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    2010-01-01

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

  15. Optimal intermittent search strategies: smelling the prey

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2010-05-14

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

  16. Prey switching behaviour in the planktonic copepod Acartia tonsa

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    1996-01-01

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

  17. Parasites as prey

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2012-01-01

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

  18. Prey detection and prey capture in copepod nauplii

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2012-01-01

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

  19. Specific assay measuring binding of /sup 125/I-Gp 120 from HIV to T4/sup +//CD4/sup +/ cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lundin, K.; Nygren, A.; Ramstedt, U.; Gidlund, M.; Wigzell, H.; Arthur, L.O.; Robey, W.G.; Morein, B.

    1987-02-26

    The HIV (HTLV-III) envelope glycoprotein, Gp120, was isolated from virus-infected tissue culture cells using affinity chromatography. A radioimmunoassay was developed to determine the degree of iodinated Gp120 to target CD4/sup +/ (T4/sup +/) cells. /sup 125/I-Gp120 could be shown to selectively bind to CD4/sup +/ cells only. The Gp120 remained bound to these cells after repeated washes. Monoclonal anti-CD4 antibodies block the binding of Gp120 to CD4/sup +/ cells. Monoclonal antibodies to other cell surface components do not interfere with /sup 125/I-Gp120 binding. All IgG antibodies from HIV seropositive donors tested block /sup 125/I-GP120 binding, though with variable titers. The authors believe that this assay provides further proof for the use of CD4 (T4) as a component of the receptor for HIV. It represents a safe, objective and sensitive method for the analysis of Gp120-CD4 interactions, as well as the potential of antibodies to interfere with this binding. (Auth.). 24 refs.; 2 figs.; 8 tabs.

  20. Prey detection and prey capture in copepod nauplii.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eleonora Bruno

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-05-01

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

  2. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wignall, Anne E; Taylor, Phillip W

    2011-05-07

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

  4. Comparative growth and development of spiders reared on live and dead prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Yu; Zhang, Fan; Gui, Shaolan; Qiao, Huping; Hose, Grant C

    2013-01-01

    Scavenging (feeding on dead prey) has been demonstrated across a number of spider families, yet the implications of feeding on dead prey for the growth and development of individuals and population is unknown. In this study we compare the growth, development, and predatory activity of two species of spiders that were fed on live and dead prey. Pardosa astrigera (Lycosidae) and Hylyphantes graminicola (Lyniphiidae) were fed live or dead fruit flies, Drosophila melanogaster. The survival of P. astrigera and H. graminicola was not affected by prey type. The duration of late instars of P. astrigera fed dead prey were longer and mature spiders had less protein content than those fed live prey, whereas there were no differences in the rate of H. graminicola development, but the mass of mature spiders fed dead prey was greater than those fed live prey. Predation rates by P. astrigera did not differ between the two prey types, but H. graminicola had a higher rate of predation on dead than alive prey, presumably because the dead flies were easier to catch and handle. Overall, the growth, development and reproduction of H. graminicola reared with dead flies was better than those reared on live flies, yet for the larger P. astrigera, dead prey may suit smaller instars but mature spiders may be best maintained with live prey. We have clearly demonstrated that dead prey may be suitable for rearing spiders, although the success of the spiders fed such prey appears size- and species specific.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Saito, H.; Kiørboe, Thomas

    2001-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Håkan Sand

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

  9. Microbiological survey of birds of prey pellets.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-08-01

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

  10. Evaluating prey switching in wolf-ungulate systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2007-09-01

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

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2008-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2007-12-01

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

  13. Prey type and foraging ecology of Sanderlings Calidris alba in different climate zones: are tropical areas more favourable than temperate sites?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kirsten Grond

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Sanderlings (Calidris alba are long-distance migratory shorebirds with a non-breeding range that spans temperate and tropical coastal habitats. Breeding in the High Arctic combined with non-breeding seasons in the tropics necessitate long migrations, which are energetically demanding. On an annual basis, the higher energy expenditures during migration might pay off if food availability in the tropics is higher than at temperate latitudes. We compared foraging behaviour of birds at a north temperate and a tropical non-breeding site in the Netherlands and Ghana, respectively. In both cases the birds used similar habitats (open beaches, and experienced similar periods of daylight, which enabled us to compare food abundance and availability, and behavioural time budgets and food intake. During the non-breeding season, Sanderlings in the Netherlands spent 79% of their day foraging; in Ghana birds spent only 38% of the daytime period foraging and the largest proportion of their time resting (58%. The main prey item in the Netherlands was the soft-bodied polychaete Scolelepis squamata, while Sanderlings in Ghana fed almost exclusively on the bivalve Donax pulchellus, which they swallowed whole and crushed internally. Average availability of polychaete worms in the Netherlands was 7.4 g ash free dry mass (AFDM m−2, which was one tenth of the 77.1 g AFDM m−2 estimated for the beach in Ghana. In the tropical environment of Ghana the Sanderlings combined relatively low energy requirements with high prey intake rates (1.64 mg opposed to 0.13 mg AFDM s−1 for Ghana and the Netherlands respectively. Although this may suggest that the Ghana beaches are the most favourable environment, processing the hard-shelled bivalve (D. pulchellus which is the staple food could be costly. The large amount of daytime spent resting in Ghana may be indicative of the time needed to process the shell fragments, rather than indicate rest.

  14. Neuromuscular control of prey capture in frogs.

    OpenAIRE

    Nishikawa, K C

    1999-01-01

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

  15. Mechanical work as a determinant of prey-handling behavior in the tokay gecko (Gekko gecko).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrews, C; Bertram, J E

    1997-01-01

    In this study an in vitro analysis of the force and mechanical work required to bite prey items of different size and physical character is combined with an in vivo analysis of prey-handling behavior in the tokay gecko (Gekko gecko). The force required to bite and the work of biting increase with prey size, but the rate of increase is prey specific, with crickets (Acheta domestica) requiring substantially more force and work per bite than larvae (Galleria mellonella and Manduca sexta) for all but the smallest prey. Prey-handling behavior is also prey specific. Geckos exert more bites per feeding event on small crickets than on small insect larvae, but the number of bites increases faster with prey mass for larvae than for crickets. Combination of the in vitro mechanical measurements with the in vivo behavior analysis allows the calculation of total mechanical work per feeding event and indicates that total work increases with prey size but that the difference between prey types is far less than predicted from the differences in structural properties of the prey. This occurs because the number of bites and work per bite relationships tend to cancel the differences in the total work necessary to process each prey type. Thus, when considering the effect of prey size, a 13-fold greater rate of increase in bite force and an 18-fold greater rate of increase of work per bit for crickets over larvae was partially compensated for by a threefold increase in the number of bites used on larvae relative to crickets. These results can be interpreted in two ways. The effect of mechanical work in feeding behavior suggests that the energetics of jaw adductor musculature could play a greater role in governing the feeding behavior of this lizard than has previously been expected. Alternatively, the scaling of work in feeding over a range of prey sizes suggests distinct differences in the geometric features of the prey that determine how they are processed.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael eBrecht

    2012-06-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

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

    2012-08-01

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

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. Prey capture by harbour porpoises

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Verfuss, Ursula; Miller, Lee; Pilz, Peter

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-12-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holmes, Thomas H; McCormick, Mark I

    2009-03-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L Mark Elbroch

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-02-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-04-01

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

  6. Prey capture by harbor porpoises

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Miller, Lee; Verfuss, Ursula

    2009-01-01

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

  7. Two-prey one-predator model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Elettreby, M.F.

    2009-01-01

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

  8. Prey detection in a cruising copepod

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kjellerup, Sanne; Kiørboe, Thomas

    2012-01-01

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

  9. Differences in the catalytic mechanisms of mesophilic and thermophilic indole-3-glycerol phosphate synthase enzymes at their adaptive temperatures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zaccardi, Margot J.; Mannweiler, Olga; Boehr, David D.

    2012-01-01

    Highlights: ► Catalytic mechanisms of thermophilic–mesophilic enzymes may differ. ► Product release is rate-determining for thermophilic IGPS at low temperatures. ► But at higher temperatures, proton transfer from the general acid is rate-limiting. ► Rate-determining step is different still for mesophilic IGPS. ► Both chemical and physical steps of catalysis are important for temperature adaptation. -- Abstract: Thermophilic enzymes tend to be less catalytically-active at lower temperatures relative to their mesophilic counterparts, despite having very similar crystal structures. An often cited hypothesis for this general observation is that thermostable enzymes have evolved a more rigid tertiary structure in order to cope with their more extreme, natural environment, but they are also less flexible at lower temperatures, leading to their lower catalytic activity under mesophilic conditions. An alternative hypothesis, however, is that complementary thermophilic–mesophilic enzyme pairs simply operate through different evolutionary-optimized catalytic mechanisms. In this communication, we present evidence that while the steps of the catalytic mechanisms for mesophilic and thermophilic indole-3-glycerol phosphate synthase (IGPS) enzymes are fundamentally similar, the identity of the rate-determining step changes as a function of temperature. Our findings indicate that while product release is rate-determining at 25 °C for thermophilic IGPS, near its adaptive temperature (75 °C), a proton transfer event, involving a general acid, becomes rate-determining. The rate-determining steps for thermophilic and mesophilic IGPS enzymes are also different at their respective, adaptive temperatures with the mesophilic IGPS-catalyzed reaction being rate-limited before irreversible CO 2 release, and the thermophilic IGPS-catalyzed reaction being rate limited afterwards.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-11-01

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

  11. A specialized araneophagic predator's short-term nutrient utilization depends on the macronutrient content of prey rather than on prey taxonomic affiliation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Toft, Søren; Li, Daiqin; Mayntz, David

    2010-01-01

    rate of high-protein flies than of high-lipid flies and spiders but, after 5 days of feeding, there is no significant difference in growth between treatments, and the diets lead to significant changes in the macronutrient composition of P. quei as a result of variable extraction and utilization...... of the prey. The short-term utilization of spider prey is similar to that of high-lipid flies and both differ in several respects from the utilization of high-protein flies. Thus, the short-term nutrient utilization is better explained by prey macronutrient content than by whether the prey is a spider or not....... The results suggest that spider prey may have a more optimal macronutrient composition for P. quei and that P. quei does not depend on spider-specific substances....

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fiksen, O.; MacKenzie, Brian

    2002-01-01

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

  13. Dolphin underwater bait-balling behaviors in relation to group and prey ball sizes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaughn-Hirshorn, Robin L; Muzi, Elisa; Richardson, Jessica L; Fox, Gabriella J; Hansen, Lauren N; Salley, Alyce M; Dudzinski, Kathleen M; Würsig, Bernd

    2013-09-01

    We characterized dusky dolphin (Lagenorhynchus obscurus) feeding behaviors recorded on underwater video, and related behaviors to variation in prey ball sizes, dolphin group sizes, and study site (Argentina versus New Zealand, NZ). Herding behaviors most often involved dolphins swimming around the side or under prey balls, but dolphins in Argentina more often swam under prey balls (48% of passes) than did dolphins in NZ (34% of passes). This result may have been due to differences in group sizes between sites, since groups are larger in Argentina. Additionally, in NZ, group size was positively correlated with proportion of passes that occurred under prey balls (pdolphins in Argentina more often swam through prey balls (8% of attempts) than did dolphins in NZ (4% of attempts). This result may have been due to differences in prey ball sizes between sites, since dolphins fed on larger prey balls in Argentina (>74m(2)) than in NZ (maximum 33m(2)). Additionally, in NZ, dolphins were more likely to swim through prey balls to capture fish when they fed on larger prey balls (p=0.025). Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. When attempts at robbing prey turn fatal

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-07-01

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

  15. Prey preference follows phylogeny: evolutionary dietary patterns within the marine gastropod group Cladobranchia (Gastropoda: Heterobranchia: Nudibranchia).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goodheart, Jessica A; Bazinet, Adam L; Valdés, Ángel; Collins, Allen G; Cummings, Michael P

    2017-10-26

    The impact of predator-prey interactions on the evolution of many marine invertebrates is poorly understood. Since barriers to genetic exchange are less obvious in the marine realm than in terrestrial or freshwater systems, non-allopatric divergence may play a fundamental role in the generation of biodiversity. In this context, shifts between major prey types could constitute important factors explaining the biodiversity of marine taxa, particularly in groups with highly specialized diets. However, the scarcity of marine specialized consumers for which reliable phylogenies exist hampers attempts to test the role of trophic specialization in evolution. In this study, RNA-Seq data is used to produce a phylogeny of Cladobranchia, a group of marine invertebrates that feed on a diverse array of prey taxa but mostly specialize on cnidarians. The broad range of prey type preferences allegedly present in two major groups within Cladobranchia suggest that prey type shifts are relatively common over evolutionary timescales. In the present study, we generated a well-supported phylogeny of the major lineages within Cladobranchia using RNA-Seq data, and used ancestral state reconstruction analyses to better understand the evolution of prey preference. These analyses answered several fundamental questions regarding the evolutionary relationships within Cladobranchia, including support for a clade of species from Arminidae as sister to Tritoniidae (which both preferentially prey on Octocorallia). Ancestral state reconstruction analyses supported a cladobranchian ancestor with a preference for Hydrozoa and show that the few transitions identified only occur from lineages that prey on Hydrozoa to those that feed on other types of prey. There is strong phylogenetic correlation with prey preference within Cladobranchia, suggesting that prey type specialization within this group has inertia. Shifts between different types of prey have occurred rarely throughout the evolution of

  16. Stomach fullness shapes prey choice decisions in crab plovers (Dromas ardeola)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bom, Roeland A.; Fijen, Thijs P. M.; van Gils, Jan A.

    2018-01-01

    Foragers whose energy intake rate is constrained by search and handling time should, according to the contingency model (CM), select prey items whose profitability exceeds or equals the forager’s long-term average energy intake rate. This rule does not apply when prey items are found and ingested at a higher rate than the digestive system can process them. According to the digestive rate model (DRM), foragers in such situations should prefer prey with the highest digestive quality, instead of the highest profitability. As the digestive system fills up, the limiting constraint switches from ingestion rate to digestion rate, and prey choice is expected to change accordingly for foragers making decisions over a relative short time window. We use these models to understand prey choice in crab plovers (Dromas ardeola), preying on either small burrowing crabs that are swallowed whole (high profitability, but potentially inducing a digestive constraint) or on larger swimming crabs that are opened to consume only the flesh (low profitability, but easier to digest). To parameterize the CM and DRM, we measured energy content, ballast mass and handling times for different sized prey, and the birds’ digestive capacity in three captive individuals. Subsequently, these birds were used in ad libitum experiments to test if they obeyed the rules of the CM or DRM. We found that crab plovers with an empty stomach mainly chose the most profitable prey, matching the CM. When stomach fullness increased, the birds switched their preference from the most profitable prey to the highest-quality prey, matching the predictions of the DRM. This shows that prey choice is context dependent, affected by the stomach fullness of an animal. Our results suggest that prey choice experiments should be carefully interpreted, especially under captive conditions as foragers often ‘fill up’ in the course of feeding trials. PMID:29641542

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rob Williams

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

  18. Assessing diet compositions of Lake Ontario predators using fatty acid profiles of prey fishes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Happell, Austin; Pattridge, Robert; Rinchard, Jacques; Walsh, Maureen

    2017-01-01

    Fatty acid profiles are used in food web studies to assess trophic interactions between predator and prey. The present study provides the first comprehensive fatty acid dataset for important prey and predator species in Lake Ontario. Three major prey fish (alewife, rainbow smelt, and round goby) were collected at three sites along the southern shore of Lake Ontario during the spring and fall of 2013, and predator species were collected in similar locations during the summer of 2013. Fatty acid compositions were compared among all prey species, all predator species, and information from both predator and prey was used to infer foraging differences among predators. Seasonal differences in fatty acids were found within each prey species studied. Differences among prey species were greater than any spatio-temporal differences detected within species. Fatty acids of predators revealed species-specific differences that matched known foraging habits. Chinook and Coho salmon, which are known to select alewife as their dominant prey item, had relatively little variation in fatty acid profiles. Conversely, brown trout, lake trout, yellow perch and esocids had highly variable fatty acid profiles and likely highly variable diet compositions. In general, our data suggested three dominant foraging patterns: 1) diet composed of nearly exclusively alewife for Chinook and Coho Salmon; 2) a mixed diet of alewife and round goby for brown and lake trout, and both rock and smallmouth bass; 3) a diet that is likely comprised of forage fishes other than those included in our study for northern pike and chain pickerel.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2009-03-15

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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dubois, Maitee; Hare, Landis

    2009-01-01

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

  1. Predator and prey perception in copepods due to hydromechanical signals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kiørboe, Thomas; Visser, Andre

    1999-01-01

    of the different components of the fluid disturbance. We use this model to argue that prey perception depends on the absolute magnitude of the fluid velocity generated by the moving prey, while predator perception depends on the magnitude of one or several of the components of the fluid velocity gradients...... (deformation rate, vorticity, acceleration) generated by the predator. On the assumption that hydrodynamic disturbances are perceived through the mechanical bending of sensory setae, we estimate the magnitude of the signal strength due to each of the fluid disturbance components. We then derive equations...... for reaction distances as a function of threshold signal strength and the size and velocity of the prey or predator. We provide a conceptual framework for quantifying threshold signal strengths and, hence, perception distances. The model is illustrated by several examples, and we demonstrate, for example, (1...

  2. On multi-team predator-prey models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Elettreby, M.F.; Saker, S.H.; Ahmed, E.

    2005-05-01

    Many creatures form teams. This has, at least, two main advantages: the first is the improvement in foraging, since looking for food in a team is more efficient than doing it alone. The second is that living in a team reduces predation risk due to early spotting of predators and that existing in a team gives a higher probability that the predator will attack another member of the team. In this paper models are given where two teams of predators interact with two teams of preys. The teams of each group (predators or preys) help each other. In this paper we propose three different versions of the multi-team predator prey model. We study the equilibrium solutions, the conditions of their local asymptotic stability, persistence and the global stability of the solution of one of the models. Some numerical simulations are done. (author)

  3. Senses & Sensibility: Predator-Prey Experiments Reveal How Fish Perceive & Respond to Threats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Jason; Holloway, Barbara; Ketcham, Elizabeth; Long, John

    2008-01-01

    The predator-prey relationship is one of the most recognizable and well-studied animal relationships. One of the more striking aspects of this relationship is the differential natural selection pressure placed on predators and their prey. This differential pressure results from differing costs of failure, the so-called life-dinner principle. If a…

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jonsson, Mikael; Skov, Christian; Koed, Anders

    2008-01-01

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

  5. The modeling of predator-prey interactions

    OpenAIRE

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

    2015-01-01

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

  6. Differences in the catalytic mechanisms of mesophilic and thermophilic indole-3-glycerol phosphate synthase enzymes at their adaptive temperatures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaccardi, Margot J; Mannweiler, Olga; Boehr, David D

    2012-02-10

    Thermophilic enzymes tend to be less catalytically-active at lower temperatures relative to their mesophilic counterparts, despite having very similar crystal structures. An often cited hypothesis for this general observation is that thermostable enzymes have evolved a more rigid tertiary structure in order to cope with their more extreme, natural environment, but they are also less flexible at lower temperatures, leading to their lower catalytic activity under mesophilic conditions. An alternative hypothesis, however, is that complementary thermophilic-mesophilic enzyme pairs simply operate through different evolutionary-optimized catalytic mechanisms. In this communication, we present evidence that while the steps of the catalytic mechanisms for mesophilic and thermophilic indole-3-glycerol phosphate synthase (IGPS) enzymes are fundamentally similar, the identity of the rate-determining step changes as a function of temperature. Our findings indicate that while product release is rate-determining at 25°C for thermophilic IGPS, near its adaptive temperature (75°C), a proton transfer event, involving a general acid, becomes rate-determining. The rate-determining steps for thermophilic and mesophilic IGPS enzymes are also different at their respective, adaptive temperatures with the mesophilic IGPS-catalyzed reaction being rate-limited before irreversible CO2 release, and the thermophilic IGPS-catalyzed reaction being rate limited afterwards. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  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. Echolocating bats cry out loud to detect their prey

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Surlykke, Annemarie; Kalko, Elisabeth K V

    2008-01-01

    Echolocating bats have successfully exploited a broad range of habitats and prey. Much research has demonstrated how time-frequency structure of echolocation calls of different species is adapted to acoustic constraints of habitats and foraging behaviors. However, the intensity of bat calls has b...

  9. Chapter 22: Marbled Murrelet Food Habits and Prey Ecology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esther E. Burkett

    1995-01-01

    Information on food habits of the Marbled Murrelet (Brachyramphus marmoratus) was compiled from systematic studies and anecdotal reports from Alaska to California. Major differences between the winter and summer diets were apparent, with euphausiids and mysids becoming more dominant during winter and spring. The primary invertebrate prey items were...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-01-01

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

  11. Interspecific variation in prey capture behavior by co-occurring Nepenthes pitcher plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chin, Lijin; Chung, Arthur YC; Clarke, Charles

    2014-01-01

    Pitcher plants of the genus Nepenthes capture a wide range of arthropod prey for nutritional benefit, using complex combinations of visual and olfactory signals and gravity-driven pitfall trapping mechanisms. In many localities throughout Southeast Asia, several Nepenthes different species occur in mixed populations. Often, the species present at any given location have strongly divergent trap structures and preliminary surveys indicate that different species trap different combinations of arthropod prey, even when growing at the same locality. On this basis, it has been proposed that co-existing Nepenthes species may be engaged in niche segregation with regards to arthropod prey, avoiding direct competition with congeners by deploying traps that have modifications that enable them to target specific prey types. We examined prey capture among 3 multi-species Nepenthes populations in Borneo, finding that co-existing Nepenthes species do capture different combinations of prey, but that significant interspecific variations in arthropod prey combinations can often be detected only at sub-ordinal taxonomic ranks. In all lowland Nepenthes species examined, the dominant prey taxon is Formicidae, but montane Nepenthes trap few (or no) ants and 2 of the 3 species studied have evolved to target alternative sources of nutrition, such as tree shrew feces. Using similarity and null model analyses, we detected evidence for niche segregation with regards to formicid prey among 5 lowland, sympatric Nepenthes species in Sarawak. However, we were unable to determine whether these results provide support for the niche segregation hypothesis, or whether they simply reflect unquantified variation in heterogeneous habitats and/or ant communities in the study sites. These findings are used to propose improvements to the design of field experiments that seek to test hypotheses about targeted prey capture patterns in Nepenthes. PMID:24481246

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. Predator-prey interactions as macro-scale drivers of species diversity in mammals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sandom, Christopher James; Sandel, Brody Steven; Dalby, Lars

    Background/Question/Methods Understanding the importance of predator-prey interactions for species diversity is a central theme in ecology, with fundamental consequences for predicting the responses of ecosystems to land use and climate change. We assessed the relative support for different...... mechanistic drivers of mammal species richness at macro-scales for two trophic levels: predators and prey. To disentangle biotic (i.e. functional predator-prey interactions) from abiotic (i.e. environmental) and bottom-up from top-down determinants we considered three hypotheses: 1) environmental factors...... that determine ecosystem productivity drive prey and predator richness (the productivity hypothesis, abiotic, bottom-up), 2) consumer richness is driven by resource diversity (the resource diversity hypothesis, biotic, bottom-up) and 3) consumers drive richness of their prey (the top-down hypothesis, biotic, top...

  15. A method for in situ estimation of prey selectivity and predation rate in large plankton, exemplified with the jellyfish Aurelia aurita (L.)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansson, L.J.

    2006-01-01

    , predation rate can be calculated as increase in gut content over time. Clearance rates for different prey can be calculated from predation rates and prey concentrations in the water, allowing accurate estimates of prey selectivity. Thus, the problem of unknown feeding history and feeding environment, which...... of a specific individual plankton predator in situ.After prey has been evacuated from the gut of an individual predator, the predator is incubated in situ, and observed by SCUBA-divers who recapture the individual after a defined time. Given that this incubation time is shorter than prey digestion time...... among individual jellyfish and among the various oral arms and gastric pouches within individuals. Clearance rates varied strongly with prey type. The medusae selected large crustacean prey (cladocerans and copepods/copepodites) over echinoderm larvae and copepod nauplii. Prey distribution within...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2009-09-01

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

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Munk, Peter

    1997-01-01

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

  18. Relating marten scat contents to prey consumed

    Science.gov (United States)

    William J. Zielinski

    1986-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan E Sala

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

  20. 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

  1. Plant architecture and prey distribution influence foraging behavior of the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis (Acari: Phytoseiidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gontijo, Lessando M; Nechols, James R; Margolies, David C; Cloyd, Raymond A

    2012-01-01

    The arrangement, number, and size of plant parts may influence predator foraging behavior, either directly, by altering the rate or pattern of predator movement, or, indirectly, by affecting the distribution and abundance of prey. We report on the effects of both plant architecture and prey distribution on foraging by the predatory mite, Phytoseiulus persimilis Athias-Henriot (Acari: Phytoseiidae), on cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.). Plants differed in leaf number (2- or 6-leafed), and there were associated differences in leaf size, plant height, and relative proportions of plant parts; but all had the same total surface area. The prey, the twospotted spider mite Tetranychus urticae Koch (Acari: Tetranychidae), were distributed either on the basal leaf or on all leaves. The effect of plant architecture on predator foraging behavior varied depending on prey distribution. The dimensions of individual plant parts affected time allocated to moving and feeding, but they did not appear to influence the frequency with which predators moved among different plant parts. Overall, P. persimilis moved less, and fed upon prey longer, on 6-leafed plants with prey on all leaves than on plants representing other treatment combinations. Our findings suggest that both plant architecture and pattern of prey distribution should be considered, along with other factors such as herbivore-induced plant volatiles, in augmentative biological control programs.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matt W Hayward

    2016-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walzer, Andreas; Schausberger, Peter

    2011-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Broom, Mark; Ruxton, Graeme D

    2012-12-21

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

  5. Infrared tomographic PIV and 3D motion tracking system applied to aquatic predator–prey interaction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Adhikari, Deepak; Longmire, Ellen K

    2013-01-01

    Infrared tomographic PIV and 3D motion tracking are combined to measure evolving volumetric velocity fields and organism trajectories during aquatic predator–prey interactions. The technique was used to study zebrafish foraging on both non-evasive and evasive prey species. Measurement volumes of 22.5 mm × 10.5 mm × 12 mm were reconstructed from images captured on a set of four high-speed cameras. To obtain accurate fluid velocity vectors within each volume, fish were first masked out using an automated visual hull method. Fish and prey locations were identified independently from the same image sets and tracked separately within the measurement volume. Experiments demonstrated that fish were not influenced by the infrared laser illumination or the tracer particles. Results showed that the zebrafish used different strategies, suction and ram feeding, for successful capture of non-evasive and evasive prey, respectively. The two strategies yielded different variations in fluid velocity between the fish mouth and the prey. In general, the results suggest that the local flow field, the direction of prey locomotion with respect to the predator and the relative accelerations and speeds of the predator and prey may all be significant in determining predation success. (paper)

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MS. Araújo

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

  7. Prey exoskeletons influence the course of gastric evacuation in Atlantic cod Gadus morhua

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Couturier, C. S.; Andersen, N. G.; Audet, C.

    2013-01-01

    species, Pandalus borealis, Pandalus montagui and Eualus macilentus, and the crab Chionoecetes opilio, were evacuated from the stomach at different rates. The duration of all stages increased with increasing ash (and carbonate) content of the fresh prey. Thickness, chemical composition and morphology...... of the prey exoskeleton all affected gastric evacuation: duration of initial delay, overall evacuation rate and a decreased evacuation rate at the end of the process. The power exponential function (PEF), with its shape parameter, described the course of evacuation for these prey types well, especially...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-02-01

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

  9. Cheetahs, Acinonyx jubatus, balance turn capacity with pace when chasing prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, John W.; Mills, Michael G. L.; Wilson, Rory P.; Peters, Gerrit; Mills, Margaret E. J.; Speakman, John R.; Durant, Sarah M.; Bennett, Nigel C.; Marks, Nikki J.; Scantlebury, Michael

    2013-01-01

    Predator–prey interactions are fundamental in the evolution and structure of ecological communities. Our understanding, however, of the strategies used in pursuit and evasion remains limited. Here, we report on the hunting dynamics of the world's fastest land animal, the cheetah, Acinonyx jubatus. Using miniaturized data loggers, we recorded fine-scale movement, speed and acceleration of free-ranging cheetahs to measure how hunting dynamics relate to chasing different sized prey. Cheetahs attained hunting speeds of up to 18.94 m s−1 and accelerated up to 7.5 m s−2 with greatest angular velocities achieved during the terminal phase of the hunt. The interplay between forward and lateral acceleration during chases showed that the total forces involved in speed changes and turning were approximately constant over time but varied with prey type. Thus, rather than a simple maximum speed chase, cheetahs first accelerate to decrease the distance to their prey, before reducing speed 5–8 s from the end of the hunt, so as to facilitate rapid turns to match prey escape tactics, varying the precise strategy according to prey species. Predator and prey thus pit a fine balance of speed against manoeuvring capability in a race for survival. PMID:24004493

  10. Musculoskeletal anatomy of the Eurasian lynx, Lynx lynx (Carnivora: Felidae) forelimb: Adaptations to capture large prey?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viranta, Suvi; Lommi, Hanna; Holmala, Katja; Laakkonen, Juha

    2016-06-01

    Mammalian carnivores adhere to two different feeding strategies relative to their body masses. Large carnivores prey on animals that are the same size or larger than themselves, whereas small carnivores prey on smaller vertebrates and invertebrates. The Eurasian lynx (Lynx lynx) falls in between these two categories. Lynx descend from larger forms that were probably large prey specialists, but during the Pleistocene became predators of small prey. The modern Eurasian lynx may be an evolutionary reversal toward specializing in large prey again. We hypothesized that the musculoskeletal anatomy of lynx should show traits for catching large prey. To test our hypothesis, we dissected the forelimb muscles of six Eurasian lynx individuals and compared our findings to results published for other felids. We measured the bones and compared their dimensions to the published material. Our material displayed a well-developed pectoral girdle musculature with some uniquely extensive muscle attachments. The upper arm musculature resembled that of the pantherine felids and probably the extinct sabertooths, and also the muscles responsible for supination and pronation were similar to those in large cats. The muscles controlling the pollex were well-developed. However, skeletal indices were similar to those of small prey predators. Our findings show that lynx possess the topographic pattern of muscle origin and insertion like in large felids. J. Morphol. 277:753-765, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  11. Cheetahs, Acinonyx jubatus, balance turn capacity with pace when chasing prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, John W; Mills, Michael G L; Wilson, Rory P; Peters, Gerrit; Mills, Margaret E J; Speakman, John R; Durant, Sarah M; Bennett, Nigel C; Marks, Nikki J; Scantlebury, Michael

    2013-10-23

    Predator-prey interactions are fundamental in the evolution and structure of ecological communities. Our understanding, however, of the strategies used in pursuit and evasion remains limited. Here, we report on the hunting dynamics of the world's fastest land animal, the cheetah, Acinonyx jubatus. Using miniaturized data loggers, we recorded fine-scale movement, speed and acceleration of free-ranging cheetahs to measure how hunting dynamics relate to chasing different sized prey. Cheetahs attained hunting speeds of up to 18.94 m s(-1) and accelerated up to 7.5 m s(-2) with greatest angular velocities achieved during the terminal phase of the hunt. The interplay between forward and lateral acceleration during chases showed that the total forces involved in speed changes and turning were approximately constant over time but varied with prey type. Thus, rather than a simple maximum speed chase, cheetahs first accelerate to decrease the distance to their prey, before reducing speed 5-8 s from the end of the hunt, so as to facilitate rapid turns to match prey escape tactics, varying the precise strategy according to prey species. Predator and prey thus pit a fine balance of speed against manoeuvring capability in a race for survival.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-01-01

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

  14. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simone M. Mendes

    2002-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kevin John Flynn

    2016-09-01

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

  17. Differential wolf-pack-size persistence and the role of risk when hunting dangerous prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barber-Meyer, Shannon M.; Mech, L. David; Newton, Wesley E.; Borg, Bridget

    2016-01-01

    Risk to predators hunting dangerous prey is an emerging area of research and could account for possible persistent differences in gray wolf (Canis lupus) pack sizes. We documented significant differences in long-term wolf-pack-size averages and variation in the Superior National Forest (SNF), Denali National Park and Preserve, Yellowstone National Park, and Yukon, Canada (pwolves’ risk when hunting primary prey, for those packs (N=3) hunting moose (Alces americanus) were significantly larger than those (N=10) hunting white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) (F1,8=16.50, p=0.004). Our data support the hypothesis that differential pack-size persistence may be perpetuated by differences in primary prey riskiness to wolves, and we highlight two important extensions of this idea: (1) the potential for wolves to provision and defend injured packmates from other wolves and (2) the importance of less-risky, buffer prey to pack-size persistence and year-to-year variation. Risk to predators hunting dangerous prey is an emerging area of research and could account for possible persistent differences in gray wolf (Canis lupus) pack sizes. We documented significant differences in long-term wolf-pack-size averages and variation in the Superior National Forest (SNF), Denali National Park and Preserve, Yellowstone National Park, and Yukon, Canada (pwolves’ risk when hunting primary prey, for those packs (N=3) hunting moose (Alces americanus) were significantly larger than those (N=10) hunting white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) (F1,8=16.50, p=0.004). Our data support the hypothesis that differential pack-size persistence may be perpetuated by differences in primary prey riskiness to wolves, and we highlight two important extensions of this idea: (1) the potential for wolves to provision and defend injured packmates from other wolves and (2) the importance of less-risky, buffer prey to pack-size persistence and year-to-year variation.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-01-01

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

  19. Predator-prey interactions in selected slow and fast developing females of a ladybird, Propylea dissecta.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siddiqui, Arshi; Omkar; Mishra, Geetanjali

    2015-10-14

    Development rate polymorphism describes the scenario in which individuals exhibit distinct differences in their rate of development resulting in slow and fast developers even from the same clutch of eggs. Previously we showed that in ladybird, Propylea dissecta fast developers have higher foraging and predation rates than slow developers. But correlation between foraging efficacies with reproductive output of female remains unexplored. We selected slow and fast developmental rate for 15 generations in a P. dissecta and assessed female functional response and numerical response by using varying prey biomasses (A. pisum). We evaluated predatory parameters: prey consumption, attack rate, handling time, and the reproductive measures: number of eggs laid, egg, and body biomass conversion efficiencies. Overall, both group of P. dissecta showed increased prey biomasses curvilinear for consumption rate demonstrating the physiological capacity of foraging for food are mutually exclusive behaviors (i.e., Holling's Type-II functional response). Consumption rate and proportion of prey consumed was higher, and prey handling time was shorter, in experimental fast developers. However, prey attack rate was higher in experimental slow developers. The functional response of experimental fast developers got elevated whereas got depressed for control slow-fast developers. Our results suggest that slow developers may perform better at low prey biomass than fast developers due to their high attack rate whereas high density prey may favour fast developers due to their shorter prey handling time and higher consumption rates. This study is first attempt to evaluate predatory responses of experimentally selected lines of slow and fast developers. J. Exp. Zool. 9999A:XX-XX, 2015. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-06-05

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

  1. Permanence of a predator-prey discrete system with Holling-IV functional response and distributed delays.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, X; Wu, Z; Zhou, T

    2016-01-01

    A predator-prey discrete-time model with Holling-IV functional response and distributed delays is investigated in this paper. By using the comparison theorem of the difference equation and some analysis technique, some sufficient conditions are obtained for the permanence of the discrete predator-prey system. Two examples are given to illustrate the feasibility of the obtained result.

  2. Identification of volatiles that are used in discrimination between plants infested with prey or nonprey herbivores by a predatory mite

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boer, de J.G.; Posthumus, M.A.; Dicke, M.

    2004-01-01

    Carnivorous arthropods can use herbivore-induced plant volatiles to locate their herbivorous prey. In the field, carnivores are confronted with information from plants infested with herbivores that may differ in their suitability as prey. Discrimination by the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Soriguer Ramón C

    2011-10-01

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

  4. Fine-scale tracking and diet information of a marine predator reveals the origin and contrasting spatial distribution of prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alonso, Hany; Granadeiro, José P.; Dias, Maria P.; Catry, Teresa; Catry, Paulo

    2018-03-01

    The distribution of many marine organisms is still poorly understood, particularly in oceanic regions. Seabirds, as aerial predators which cover extensive areas across the oceans, can potentially be used to enhance our knowledge on the distribution and abundance of their prey. In this study, we combined tracking data and dietary data from individual Cory's shearwaters Calonectris borealis (n = 68) breeding in Selvagens archipelago, Madeira, Portugal, during the chick-rearing periods of 2011 and 2016, in order to infer prey origin within shearwaters' main foraging areas. The digestion state of each prey item in the diet was assessed and classified; and compared to digestion states from known prey items fed to captive birds. In a novel approach, we combined tracking data with information on the prey digestion duration and data on the transit times from foraging grounds to the colony to estimate the location of prey capture. We found a consistent heterogeneity in prey distribution across four different marine domains: Selvagens, deep-sea, seamounts, and continental shelf. In oceanic areas, the chub mackerel Scomber colias, the main prey of Cory's shearwaters, was strongly associated with seamounts and insular shelves, whereas oceanic species like pilot-fish, flying-squid, flying-fish were clearly associated with deep-sea waters. Sardines Sardina pilchardus, anchovies Engraulis encrasicolus and other coastal species were associated with the African shelf. Prey origin assignment was robust across three different sets of assumptions, and was also supported by information on the digestion state of prey collected over a large independent sampling period (671 samples, collected in 2008-2010). The integration of fine-scale dietary and foraging trip data from marine predators provides a new framework to gain insights into the distribution and abundance of prey species in poorly known oceanic areas.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bill Zielinski

    2015-01-01

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

  6. A community-level evaluation of the impact of prey behavioural and ecological characteristics on predator diet composition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shultz, Susanne; Noë, Ronald; McGraw, W Scott; Dunbar, R I M

    2004-04-07

    Although predation avoidance is the most commonly invoked explanation for vertebrate social evolution, there is little evidence that individuals in larger groups experience lower predation rates than those in small groups. We compare the morphological and behavioural traits of mammal prey species in the Taï forest, Ivory Coast, with the diet preferences of three of their non-human predators: leopards, chimpanzees and African crowned eagles. Individual predators show marked differences in their predation rates on prey species of different body sizes, but clear patterns with prey behaviour were apparent only when differences in prey habitat use were incorporated into the analyses. Leopard predation rates are highest for terrestrial species living in smaller groups, whereas eagle predation rates are negatively correlated with group size only among arboreal prey. When prey predation rates are summed over all three predators, terrestrial species incur higher predation rates than arboreal species and, within both categories, predation rates decline with increasing prey group size and decreasing density of groups in the habitat. These results reveal that it is necessary to consider anti-predator strategies in the context of a dynamic behavioural interaction between predators and prey.

  7. Age-related decline in lateralised prey capture success in Garnett's bushbaby (Otolemur garnettii).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanbury, David B; Edens, Kyle D; Legg, Claire E; Harrell, Shane P; Greer, Tammy F; Watson, Sheree L

    2012-01-01

    We examined differences in prey capture success when reaching for moving prey with the preferred and non-preferred hand (as determined previously using stationary food items) in 12 Garnett's bushbabies (Otolemur garnettii). Hand preference was determined by a test of simple reaching for stationary food items. We assessed both the frequency of hand use and success rates for each hand in capturing live mealworms. We also examined the effect of age on overall prey capture success. Subjects were individually presented with live mealworms in a cup partially filled with a cornmeal medium. The preferred hand was used significantly more often than the non-preferred hand to obtain the moving prey; however, no differences were found in the frequency of usage of the left vs the right hand. Furthermore, there were no differences in the success rates of the left vs the right hand, nor the preferred vs the non-preferred hand. There was a significant negative correlation between age and prey capture success. These data suggest that age, rather than preferred hand, may be the most relevant factor in the bushbabies' prey capture success.

  8. Stability analysis of pest-predator interaction model with infectious disease in prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suryanto, Agus; Darti, Isnani; Anam, Syaiful

    2018-03-01

    We consider an eco-epidemiological model based on a modified Leslie-Gower predator-prey model. Such eco-epidemiological model is proposed to describe the interaction between pest as the prey and its predator. We assume that the pest can be infected by a disease or pathogen and the predator only eats the susceptible prey. The dynamical properties of the model such as the existence and the stability of biologically feasible equilibria are studied. The model has six type of equilibria, but only three of them are conditionally stable. We find that the predator in this system cannot go extinct. However, the susceptible or the infective prey may disappear in the environment. To support our analytical results, we perform some numerical simulations with different scenario.

  9. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael W McCoy

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Puzović S.

    2008-01-01

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

  12. Predator size and the suitability of a common prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erickson, Kristin S; Morse, D H

    1997-02-01

     Although a predator's mass should influence the suitability of its prey, this subject has received little direct attention. We studied the capture and processing of an abundant syrphid fly Toxomerus marginatus (c. 4 mg) by 0.6- to 40-mg juvenile crab spiders Misumena vatia (Thomisidae) to determine how profitability, relative profitability (profitability/predator mass), overall gain in mass, and relative gain in mass differed with predator mass, and whether foraging changed concurrently. In multi-prey experiments, the smallest successful spiders (0.6-3.0 mg) extracted less mass from flies, and did so more slowly, than large spiders. This gain was proportionately similar to that of 10- to 40-mg spiders with access to many Toxomerus. However, many small spiders failed to capture flies. When we gave spiders only a single Toxomerus, the smallest ones again extracted mass more slowly than the large ones and increased in mass less than the large ones, but increased in mass proportionately more than large ones. Relative gain in mass from a single prey decreased with increasing spider mass. Spiders larger than 10 mg all extracted similar amounts of mass from a single Toxomerus at similar rates, but varied in time spent between captures. Thus, Toxomerus changes with spider mass from a large, hard-to-capture bonanza to a small, easy-to-capture item of low per capita value. However, Toxomerus is common enough that large spiders can capture it en masse, thereby compensating for its decline in per capita value.

  13. Prey capture by freely swimming flagellates

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-11-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nentwig, Wolfgang

    1986-07-01

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

  15. A tiger beetle’s pursuit of prey depends on distance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noest, R. M.; Wang, Z. Jane

    2017-04-01

    Tiger beetles pursue prey by adjusting their heading according to a time-delayed proportional control law that minimizes the error angle (Haselsteiner et al 2014 J. R. Soc. Interface 11 20140216). This control law can be further interpreted in terms of mechanical actuation: to catch prey, tiger beetles exert a sideways force by biasing their tripod gait in proportion to the error angle measured half a stride earlier. The proportional gain was found to be nearly optimal in the sense that it minimizes the time to point directly toward the prey. For a time-delayed linear proportional controller, the optimal gain, k, is inversely proportional to the time delay, τ, and satisfies kτ =1/e . Here we present evidence that tiger beetles adjust their control gain during their pursuit of prey. Our analysis shows two critical distances: one corresponding to the beetle’s final approach to the prey, and the second, less expected, occurring at a distance around 10 cm for a prey size of 4.5 mm. The beetle initiates its chase using a sub-critical gain and increases the gain to the optimal value once the prey is within this critical distance. Insects use a variety of methods to detect distance, often involving different visual cues. Here we examine two such methods: one based on motion parallax and the other based on the prey’s elevation angle. We show that, in order for the motion parallax method to explain the observed data, the beetle needs to correct for the ratio of the prey’s sideways velocity relative to its own. On the other hand, the simpler method based on the elevation angle can detect both the distance and the prey’s size. Moreover we find that the transition distance corresponds to the accuracy required to distinguish small prey from large predators.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maïté Smargiassi

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

  17. Using process algebra to develop predator-prey models of within-host parasite dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCaig, Chris; Fenton, Andy; Graham, Andrea; Shankland, Carron; Norman, Rachel

    2013-07-21

    As a first approximation of immune-mediated within-host parasite dynamics we can consider the immune response as a predator, with the parasite as its prey. In the ecological literature of predator-prey interactions there are a number of different functional responses used to describe how a predator reproduces in response to consuming prey. Until recently most of the models of the immune system that have taken a predator-prey approach have used simple mass action dynamics to capture the interaction between the immune response and the parasite. More recently Fenton and Perkins (2010) employed three of the most commonly used prey-dependent functional response terms from the ecological literature. In this paper we make use of a technique from computing science, process algebra, to develop mathematical models. The novelty of the process algebra approach is to allow stochastic models of the population (parasite and immune cells) to be developed from rules of individual cell behaviour. By using this approach in which individual cellular behaviour is captured we have derived a ratio-dependent response similar to that seen in the previous models of immune-mediated parasite dynamics, confirming that, whilst this type of term is controversial in ecological predator-prey models, it is appropriate for models of the immune system. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Predator-induced flow disturbances alert prey, from the onset of an attack

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casas, Jérôme; Steinmann, Thomas

    2014-01-01

    Many prey species, from soil arthropods to fish, perceive the approach of predators, allowing them to escape just in time. Thus, prey capture is as important to predators as prey finding. We extend an existing framework for understanding the conjoint trajectories of predator and prey after encounters, by estimating the ratio of predator attack and prey danger perception distances, and apply it to wolf spiders attacking wood crickets. Disturbances to air flow upstream from running spiders, which are sensed by crickets, were assessed by computational fluid dynamics with the finite-elements method for a much simplified spider model: body size, speed and ground effect were all required to obtain a faithful representation of the aerodynamic signature of the spider, with the legs making only a minor contribution. The relationship between attack speed and the maximal distance at which the cricket can perceive the danger is parabolic; it splits the space defined by these two variables into regions differing in their values for this ratio. For this biological interaction, the ratio is no greater than one, implying immediate perception of the danger, from the onset of attack. Particular attention should be paid to the ecomechanical aspects of interactions with such small ratio, because of the high degree of bidirectional coupling of the behaviour of the two protagonists. This conclusion applies to several other predator–prey systems with sensory ecologies based on flow sensing, in air and water. PMID:25030986

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Asa Johannesen

    2017-03-01

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

  20. Predator-prey encounters in turbulent waters

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2002-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annemarie Surlykke

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

  2. Occurrence of enteropathogenic bacteria in birds of prey in Italy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gargiulo, A; Fioretti, A; Russo, T P; Varriale, L; Rampa, L; Paone, S; De Luca Bossa, L M; Raia, P; Dipineto, L

    2018-03-01

    The importance of wild birds as potential vectors of disease has received recent renewed empirical interest, especially regarding human health although information regarding the enteropathogenic bacteria in birds of prey continue to be scant. This study was performed with the aim to evaluate the occurrence of enteropathogenic bacteria (i.e. Campylobacter spp. Escherichia coli, Salmonella spp.) in birds of prey carcasses in Southern Italy. The results of the present study showed a prevalence of 33·1% (49/148) for Campylobacter spp. where all positive isolates (49/49) were identified as Campylobacter jejuni, and among these positive 12/49 were also identified as Campylobacter coli. Thus, 12/49 birds of prey showed mixed infections for both Campylobacter species. Differences in Campylobacter spp. prevalence between diurnal and nocturnal birds were statistically significant (P = 0·016). Escherichia coli showed a prevalence of 6·8% (10/148) and were serogrouped as O26 (n = 3), O55 (n = 2), O145 (n = 5). Salmonella spp. showed a prevalence of 6·8% (10/148) and were serotyped as S. Napoli (n = 4), Salmonella salamae (n = 3) and S. Typhimurium (n = 3). Although wildlife disease outbreaks have often been underreported in the broader context of global epidemiology, results of the present study suggest that birds of prey may serve as a reservoir of pathogens for livestock and human health, acting at the animal-human-ecosystem interface. This study confirms the role of birds of prey as a reservoir of enteropathogenic bacteria (i.e. Campylobacter spp., Escherichia coli, Salmonella spp.). Wild birds can contaminate environment with their faeces and play a crucial role in the transmission of pathogens to poultry and livestock farms and aquifers supplying water to humans. Furthermore, wild birds could disseminate pathogens within rescue and rehabilitation centres where they are admitted. © 2017 The Society for Applied Microbiology.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green, Stephanie J; Côté, Isabelle M

    2014-11-01

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

  4. Models of prey capture in larval fish

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Drost, M.R.

    1986-01-01

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

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

  5. Lake Ontario benthic prey fish assessment, 2015

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    Data.gov (United States)

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Malay Banerjee

    2018-03-01

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

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

    Data.gov (United States)

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansen, Adam G.; Beauchamp, David A.

    2014-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Maria; Wahlberg, Magnus; Surlykke, Annemarie; Madsen, Peter Teglberg

    2013-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria eWilson

    2013-06-01

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

  12. Prey items and predation behavior of killer whales (Orcinus orca) in Nunavut, Canada based on Inuit hunter interviews

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    Background Killer whales (Orcinus orca) are the most widely distributed cetacean, occurring in all oceans worldwide, and within ocean regions different ecotypes are defined based on prey preferences. Prey items are largely unknown in the eastern Canadian Arctic and therefore we conducted a survey of Inuit Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) to provide information on the feeding ecology of killer whales. We compiled Inuit observations on killer whales and their prey items via 105 semi-directed interviews conducted in 11 eastern Nunavut communities (Kivalliq and Qikiqtaaluk regions) from 2007-2010. Results Results detail local knowledge of killer whale prey items, hunting behaviour, prey responses, distribution of predation events, and prey capture techniques. Inuit TEK and published literature agree that killer whales at times eat only certain parts of prey, particularly of large whales, that attacks on large whales entail relatively small groups of killer whales, and that they hunt cooperatively. Inuit observations suggest that there is little prey specialization beyond marine mammals and there are no definitive observations of fish in the diet. Inuit hunters and elders also documented the use of sea ice and shallow water as prey refugia. Conclusions By combining TEK and scientific approaches we provide a more holistic view of killer whale predation in the eastern Canadian Arctic relevant to management and policy. Continuing the long-term relationship between scientists and hunters will provide for successful knowledge integration and has resulted in considerable improvement in understanding of killer whale ecology relevant to management of prey species. Combining scientists and Inuit knowledge will assist in northerners adapting to the restructuring of the Arctic marine ecosystem associated with warming and loss of sea ice. PMID:22520955

  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. Predatory mites avoid ovipositing near counter-attacking prey

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2001-01-01

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

  15. Prey perception in feeding-current feeding copepods

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fransz, H.G.

    1974-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-04-01

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

  18. Foraging mechanisms of siscowet lake trout (Salvelinus namaycush siscowet) on pelagic prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keyler, Trevor D.; Hrabik, Thomas R.; Austin, C. Lee; Gorman, Owen T.; Mensinger, Allen F.

    2015-01-01

    The reaction distance, angle of attack, and foraging success were determined for siscowet lake trout (Salvelinus namaycush siscowet) during laboratory trials under lighting conditions that approximated downwelling spectral irradiance and intensity (9.00 × 108–1.06 × 1014 photons m− 2 s− 1) at daytime depths. Siscowet reaction distance in response to golden shiners (Notemigonus crysoleucas) was directly correlated with increasing light intensity until saturation at 1.86 × 1011 photons m− 2 s− 1, above which reaction distance was constant within the range of tested light intensities. At the lowest tested light intensity, sensory detection was sufficient to locate prey at 25 ± 2 cm, while increasing light intensities increased reaction distance up to 59 ± 2 cm at 1.06 × 1014 photons m− 2 s− 1. Larger prey elicited higher reaction distances than smaller prey at all light intensities while moving prey elicited higher reaction distances than stationary prey at the higher light intensities (6.00 × 109 to 1.06 × 1014 photons m− 2 s− 1). The capture and consumption of prey similarly increased with increasing light intensity while time to capture decreased with increasing light intensity. The majority of orientations toward prey occurred within 120° of the longitudinal axis of the siscowet's eyes, although reaction distances among 30° increments along the entire axis were not significantly different. The developed predictive model will help determine reaction distances for siscowet in various photic environments and will help identify the mechanisms and behavior that allow for low light intensity foraging within freshwater systems.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1992-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-11-01

    Understanding the ecological processes that underpin species distribution patterns is a fundamental goal in spatial ecology. However, developing predictive models of habitat use is challenging for species that forage in marine environments, as both predators and prey are often highly mobile and difficult to monitor. Consequently, few studies have developed resource selection functions for marine predators based directly on the abundance and distribution of their prey. We analysed contemporaneous data on the diving locations of two seabird species, the shallow-diving Peruvian Booby (Sula variegata) and deeper diving Guanay Cormorant (Phalacrocorax bougainvilliorum), and the abundance and depth distribution of their main prey, Peruvian anchoveta (Engraulis ringens). Based on this unique data set, we developed resource selection functions to test the hypothesis that the probability of seabird diving behaviour at a given location is a function of the relative abundance of prey in the upper water column. For both species, we show that the probability of diving behaviour is mostly explained by the distribution of prey at shallow depths. While the probability of diving behaviour increases sharply with prey abundance at relatively low levels of abundance, support for including abundance in addition to the depth distribution of prey is weak, suggesting that prey abundance was not a major factor determining the location of diving behaviour during the study period. The study thus highlights the importance of the depth distribution of prey for two species of seabird with different diving capabilities. The results complement previous research that points towards the importance of oceanographic processes that enhance the accessibility of prey to seabirds. The implications are that locations where prey is predictably found at accessible depths may be more important for surface foragers, such as seabirds, than locations where prey is predictably abundant. Analysis of the relative

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. Toward a community ecology of landscapes: predicting multiple predator-prey interactions across geographic space.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmitz, Oswald J; Miller, Jennifer R B; Trainor, Anne M; Abrahms, Briana

    2017-09-01

    Community ecology was traditionally an integrative science devoted to studying interactions between species and their abiotic environments in order to predict species' geographic distributions and abundances. Yet for philosophical and methodological reasons, it has become divided into two enterprises: one devoted to local experimentation on species interactions to predict community dynamics; the other devoted to statistical analyses of abiotic and biotic information to describe geographic distribution. Our goal here is to instigate thinking about ways to reconnect the two enterprises and thereby return to a tradition to do integrative science. We focus specifically on the community ecology of predators and prey, which is ripe for integration. This is because there is active, simultaneous interest in experimentally resolving the nature and strength of predator-prey interactions as well as explaining patterns across landscapes and seascapes. We begin by describing a conceptual theory rooted in classical analyses of non-spatial food web modules used to predict species interactions. We show how such modules can be extended to consideration of spatial context using the concept of habitat domain. Habitat domain describes the spatial extent of habitat space that predators and prey use while foraging, which differs from home range, the spatial extent used by an animal to meet all of its daily needs. This conceptual theory can be used to predict how different spatial relations of predators and prey could lead to different emergent multiple predator-prey interactions such as whether predator consumptive or non-consumptive effects should dominate, and whether intraguild predation, predator interference or predator complementarity are expected. We then review the literature on studies of large predator-prey interactions that make conclusions about the nature of multiple predator-prey interactions. This analysis reveals that while many studies provide sufficient information

  4. What do predators really want? The role of gerbil energetic state in determining prey choice by Barn Owls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Embar, Keren; Mukherjee, Shomen; Kotler, Burt P

    2014-02-01

    In predator-prey foraging games, predators should respond to variations in prey state. The value of energy for the prey changes depending on season. Prey in a low energetic state and/or in a reproductive state should invest more in foraging and tolerate higher predation risk. This should make the prey more catchable, and thereby, more preferable to predators. We ask, can predators respond to prey state? How does season and state affect the foraging game from the predator's perspective? By letting owls choose between gerbils whose states we experimentally manipulated, we could demonstrate predator sensitivity to prey state and predator selectivity that otherwise may be obscured by the foraging game. During spring, owls invested more time and attacks in the patch with well-fed gerbils. During summer, owls attacked both patches equally, yet allocated more time to the patch with hungry gerbils. Energetic state per se does not seem to be the basis of owl choice. The owls strongly responded to these subtle differences. In summer, gerbils managed their behavior primarily for survival, and the owls equalized capture opportunities by attacking both patches equally.

  5. Molecular prey identification in Central European piscivores

    OpenAIRE

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

    2015-01-01

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

  6. Infomechanical specializations for prey capture in knifefish

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2007-11-01

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

  7. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2009-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pietro Lo Cascio

    2011-06-01

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

  10. Prey should hide more randomly when a predator attacks more persistently.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gal, Shmuel; Alpern, Steve; Casas, Jérôme

    2015-12-06

    When being searched for and then (if found) pursued by a predator, a prey animal has a choice between choosing very randomly among hiding locations so as to be hard to find or alternatively choosing a location from which it is more likely to successfully flee if found. That is, the prey can choose to be hard to find or hard to catch, if found. In our model, capture of prey requires both finding it and successfully pursuing it. We model this dilemma as a zero-sum repeated game between predator and prey, with the eventual capture probability as the pay-off to the predator. We find that the more random hiding strategy is better when the chances of repeated pursuit, which are known to be related to area topography, are high. Our results extend earlier results of Gal and Casas, where there was at most only a single pursuit. In that model, hiding randomly was preferred by the prey when the predator has only a few looks. Thus, our new multistage model shows that the effect of more potential looks is opposite. Our results can be viewed as a generalization of search games to the repeated game context and are in accordance with observed escape behaviour of different animals. © 2015 The Author(s).

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xianning Liu

    2012-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lönnstedt, Oona M; McCormick, Mark I

    2013-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oona M Lönnstedt

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

  14. 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

  15. Coexistence of structured populations with size-based prey selection

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hartvig, Martin; Andersen, Ken Haste

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Species with a large adult-offspring size ratio and a preferred predator–prey mass ratio undergo ontogenetic trophic niche shift(s) throughout life. Trophic interactions between such species vary throughout life, resulting in different species-level interaction motifs depending on the ma......Abstract Species with a large adult-offspring size ratio and a preferred predator–prey mass ratio undergo ontogenetic trophic niche shift(s) throughout life. Trophic interactions between such species vary throughout life, resulting in different species-level interaction motifs depending...... on the maximum adult sizes and population size distributions. We explore the assembly and potential for coexistence of small communities where all species experience ontogenetic trophic niche shifts. The life-history of each species is described by a physiologically structured model and species identity...... there is a large scope for coexistence of two species, the scope for coexistence of three species is limited and we conclude that further trait differentiation is required for coexistence of more species-rich size-structured communities....

  16. The diets of Hispaniolan colubrid snakes : I. Introduction and prey genera.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henderson, Robert W

    1984-05-01

    predators of Anolis; snakes may be important, frequent consumers of anoles.Hispaniola is physiographically and ecologically the most diverse of the Greater Antilles and, concomitantly, it has the most diverse snake fauna, including six colubrid genera containing 11 described species. It has rich frog and lizard faunas, but only two endemic mammals. Study of the diets of Hispaniola's colubrid snakes was undertaken to gain initial insights into the ecology of the snakes and to determine 1) what the snakes eat; 2) what relationships exist between snake diet and snake size as well as head and body proportions; 3) what relationships exist between snake foraging mode and prey type and size; 4) if anoles, as the most ubiquitous and conspicuous vertebrates on Hispaniola, comprise an important source of food; 5) if significant geographical differences in diet exist, expecially on satellite islands; 6) if "north island" and "south island" (sensu Williams 1961) Anolis ecomorphs are preyed upon by the same snake species in similar proportions; 7) if snakes are selective or opportunistic predators.This paper, the first in a series that will address all of the above topics, will briefly describe methods, snake species and prey genera. Prey genera are analyzed in terms of what snake taxa prey upon them, what size classes of snakes prey upon them, and prey genera diversity versus snake size and proportions.

  17. Maximum sustainable yield and species extinction in a prey-predator system: some new results.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghosh, Bapan; Kar, T K

    2013-06-01

    Though the maximum sustainable yield (MSY) approach has been legally adopted for the management of world fisheries, it does not provide any guarantee against from species extinction in multispecies communities. In the present article, we describe the appropriateness of the MSY policy in a Holling-Tanner prey-predator system with different types of functional responses. It is observed that for both type I and type II functional responses, harvesting of either prey or predator species at the MSY level is a sustainable fishing policy. In the case of combined harvesting, both the species coexist at the maximum sustainable total yield (MSTY) level if the biotic potential of the prey species is greater than a threshold value. Further, increase of the biotic potential beyond the threshold value affects the persistence of the system.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    2007-01-01

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

  19. Tadpoles of three common anuran species from Thailand do not prey on mosquito larvae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weterings, Robbie

    2015-12-01

    Tadpoles are often considered to be predators of mosquito larvae and are therefore beneficial for the control of certain disease vectors. Nevertheless, only a few species have actually been recorded to prey on mosquito larvae. The mosquito larvae predation rates of tadpoles of three common Thai anuran species (Bufo melanostictus, Kaloula pulchra and Hylarana raniceps) were experimentally tested. Tadpoles in varying developmental stages were used to assess a size/age effect on the predation rate. In addition, different instars of Culex quinquefasciatus were used in order to assess a prey size effect on the predation rates. All three species failed to show any evidence of mosquito larvae predation. Neither small nor large tadpoles fed on mosquito larvae. Prey size also did not affect predation. Although tadpoles do not feed on mosquito larvae, there may be other direct or indirect inter-specific interactions that adversely impact the development of larvae in shared habitats with tadpoles. © 2015 The Society for Vector Ecology.

  20. 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

  1. Chaos in periodically forced Holling type II predator-prey system with impulsive perturbations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang Shuwen; Tan Dejun; Chen Lansun

    2006-01-01

    The effect of periodic forcing and impulsive perturbations on predator-prey model with Holling type II functional response is investigated. The periodic forcing is affected by assuming a periodic variation in the intrinsic growth rate of prey. The impulsive perturbation is affected by introducing periodic constant impulsive immigration of predator. The dynamical behavior of the system is simulated and bifurcation diagrams are obtained for different parameters. The results show that periodic forcing and impulsive perturbation can very easily give rise to complex dynamics, including (1) quasi-periodic oscillating, (2) period doubling cascade, (3) chaos, (4) period halfing cascade, (5) non-unique dynamics

  2. Chaos in periodically forced Holling type IV predator-prey system with impulsive perturbations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang Shuwen; Tan Dejun; Chen Lansun

    2006-01-01

    The effect of periodic forcing and impulsive perturbations on predator-prey model with Holling type IV functional response is investigated. The periodic forcing is affected by assuming a periodic variation in the intrinsic growth rate of the prey. The impulsive perturbations are affected by introducing periodic constant impulsive immigration of predator. The dynamical behavior of the system is simulated and bifurcation diagrams are obtained for different parameters. The results show that periodic forcing and impulsive perturbation can easily give rise to complex dynamics, including (1) quasi-periodic oscillating, (2) period doubling cascade, (3) chaos, (4) period halfing cascade

  3. SOHO hunts elusive solar prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    1995-10-01

    SOHO will carry twelve sophisticated telescopes and other instruments, developed in record time by twelve international consortia involving scientific institutes in 15 countries. Roger M. Bonnet, the Director of ESA’s Scientific Programme said: "Each one of these instruments by itself would be enough to make major breakthroughs in our understanding of the Sun. But what makes SOHO such an exciting mission is that we will operate all the instruments together and find possible links between various phenomena at different levels in the volume of the Sun and in the interplanetary medium". Four years of intense efforts by space engineering teams in ESA and across Europe, under the leadership of the prime contractor Matra Marconi Space of Toulouse, France, have fulflled the dream of scientists who wished to build a superb space observatory for examining the Sun. SOHO, together with the four-spacecraft Cluster mission - which will explore near-Earth space, forms the Solar-Terrestrial Science Programme, the first cornerstone in ESA’s long-term programme 'Horizon 2000'. No night time for SOHO Instead of being placed in orbit around the Earth, SOHO will be lofted to a position where the gravitational pulls of the Earth and the Sun cancel each other out exactly, at 1.5 million kilometres sunward from the Earth. This is known in astronomy as the inner Lagrangian point after the French mathematician, Joseph Louis Lagrange, who first calculated its position near the end of the eighteenth century. SOHO will fly in an elliptical, or "halo" orbit around the Lagrangian point, with an orbit radius of about 600,000 kilometres, allowing the spacecraft to experience perpetual day. It will have a continuous, uninterrupted view of the Sun for twenty four hours of the day, all three hundred and sixty five days of the year, producing an extraordinary amount of data. All previous solar observatories have either been on the Earth or in orbit around our planet. On the Earth, telescopes are

  4. Selective olfactory attention of a specialised predator to intraspecific chemical signals of its prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cárdenas, Manuel; Jiroš, Pavel; Pekár, Stano

    2012-08-01

    Prey-specialised predators have evolved specific cognitive adaptations that increase their prey searching efficiency. In particular, when the prey is social, selection probably favours the use of prey intraspecific chemical signals by predatory arthropods. Using a specialised ant-eating zodariid spider, Zodarion rubidum, which is known to prey on several ant species and possesses capture and venom adaptations more effective on Formicinae ants, we tested its ability to recognise chemical cues produced by several ant species. Using an olfactometer, we tested the response of Z. rubidum towards air with chemical cues from six different ant species: Camponotus ligniperda, Lasius platythorax and Formica rufibarbis (all Formicinae); and Messor structor, Myrmica scabrinodis and Tetramorium caespitum (all Myrmicinae). Z. rubidum was attracted to air carrying chemical cues only from F. rufibarbis and L. platythorax. Then, we identified that the spiders were attracted to airborne cues coming from the F. rufibarbis gaster and Dufour's gland, in particular. Finally, we found that among several synthetic blends, the decyl acetate and undecane mixture produced significant attraction of spiders. These chemicals are produced only by three Formicine genera. Furthermore, we investigated the role of these chemical cues in the communication of F. rufibarbis and found that this blend reduces their movement. This study demonstrates the chemical cognitive capacity of Z. rubidum to locate its ant prey using chemical signals produced by the ants. The innate capacity of Z. rubidum to olfactory detect different ant species is narrow, as it includes only two ant genera, confirming trophic specialisation at lower than subfamily level. The olfactory cue detected by Zodarion spiders is probably a component of the recruitment or trail pheromone.

  5. The effect of light intensity on prey detection behavior in two Lake Malawi cichlids, Aulonocara stuartgranti and Tramitichromis sp.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwalbe, Margot A B; Webb, Jacqueline F

    2015-04-01

    Two sand-dwelling cichlids from Lake Malawi (Aulonocara stuartgranti, Tramitichromis sp.) that feed on benthic invertebrates, but have different lateral line phenotypes, use lateral line and/or visual cues to detect prey under light versus dark conditions. The current study examined how ecologically relevant variation in light intensity [0-800 lux (lx)] influences detection of prey (mobile, immobile) in each species by analyzing six behavioral parameters. Both species fed at light intensities ≥1 lx and trends in behavior among light intensities were informative. However, prey type and/or time of day (but not light intensity) predicted all four parameters analyzed with generalized linear mixed models in A. stuartgranti, whereas the interaction of light intensity and time of day predicted three of these parameters in Tramitichromis sp. Data suggest that the critical light intensity is 1-12 lx for both species, that the integration of visual and lateral line input explains differences in detection of mobile and immobile prey and behavioral changes at the transition from 1 to 0 lx in A. stuartgranti, and that Tramitichromis sp. likely uses binocular vision to locate prey. Differences in the sensory biology of species that exploit similar prey will have important implications for the trophic ecology of African cichlid fishes.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-06-01

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

  7. Molecular prey identification in Central European piscivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

  8. Limit Cycles in Predator-Prey Models

    OpenAIRE

    Puchuri Medina, Liliana

    2017-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter J. Auster

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xu Ouyang

    2017-04-01

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

  11. 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.

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-01-01

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

  14. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-12-01

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

  16. Personality matters: individual variation in reactions of naive bird predators to aposematic prey

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Exnerová, A.; Hotova Svadova, K.; Fucikova, E.; Drent, P.; Stys, P.

    2010-01-01

    Variation in reactions to aposematic prey is common among conspecific individuals of bird predators. It may result from different individual experience but it also exists among naive birds. This variation may possibly be explained by the effect of personality—a complex of correlated, heritable

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-09-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    May, S. Randolph

    2014-01-01

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

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

    OpenAIRE

    Brechbühl, Rolf; Casas, Jérôme; Bacher, Sven

    2012-01-01

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

  20. Interspecific variation in prey capture behavior by co-occurring Nepenthes pitcher plants: evidence for resource partitioning or sampling-scheme artifacts?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chin, Lijin; Chung, Arthur Y C; Clarke, Charles

    2014-01-01

    Pitcher plants of the genus Nepenthes capture a wide range of arthropod prey for nutritional benefit, using complex combinations of visual and olfactory signals and gravity-driven pitfall trapping mechanisms. In many localities throughout Southeast Asia, several Nepenthes different species occur in mixed populations. Often, the species present at any given location have strongly divergent trap structures and preliminary surveys indicate that different species trap different combinations of arthropod prey, even when growing at the same locality. On this basis, it has been proposed that co-existing Nepenthes species may be engaged in niche segregation with regards to arthropod prey, avoiding direct competition with congeners by deploying traps that have modifications that enable them to target specific prey types. We examined prey capture among 3 multi-species Nepenthes populations in Borneo, finding that co-existing Nepenthes species do capture different combinations of prey, but that significant interspecific variations in arthropod prey combinations can often be detected only at sub-ordinal taxonomic ranks. In all lowland Nepenthes species examined, the dominant prey taxon is Formicidae, but montane Nepenthes trap few (or no) ants and 2 of the 3 species studied have evolved to target alternative sources of nutrition, such as tree shrew feces. Using similarity and null model analyses, we detected evidence for niche segregation with regards to formicid prey among 5 lowland, sympatric Nepenthes species in Sarawak. However, we were unable to determine whether these results provide support for the niche segregation hypothesis, or whether they simply reflect unquantified variation in heterogeneous habitats and/or ant communities in the study sites. These findings are used to propose improvements to the design of field experiments that seek to test hypotheses about targeted prey capture patterns in Nepenthes.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

    different (relevant) stimuli that govern and guide the interactions between a predator and its potential prey.

  2. Ineffective crypsis in a crab spider: a prey community perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brechbühl, Rolf; Casas, Jérôme; Bacher, Sven

    2010-03-07

    Cryptic coloration is assumed to be beneficial to predators because of an increased encounter rate with unwary prey. This hypothesis is, however, very rarely, if ever, studied in the field. The aim of this study was to quantify the encounter rate and capture success of an ambush predator, in the field, as a function of its level of colour-matching with the background. We used the crab spider Misumena vatia, which varies its body colour and can thereby match the colour of the flower it hunts upon. We carried out a manipulative field experiment using a complete factorial design resulting in six different colour combinations of crab spiders and flowers differing in their degree of colour-matching. A rich and diverse set of naturally occurring insects visited the flowers while we continuously video-recorded the spider's foraging activity. This enabled us to test the crypsis, the spider avoidance and the flower visitor attraction hypotheses, all three supported by previous studies. Flower visitors of different groups either avoided crab spiders independent of colour-matching, such as solitary bees and syrphid flies, or ignored them, such as bumble-bees and honeybees. Moreover, colour-matched spiders did not have a higher encounter rate and capture success compared to the visually apparent ones. Thus, our results support the spider avoidance hypothesis, reject the two other hypotheses and uncovered a fourth behaviour: indifference to predators. Because flower visitors reacted differently, a community approach is mandatory in order to understand the function of background colour-matching in generalist predators. We discuss our results in relation to the size and sociality of the prey and in relation to the functional significance of colour change in this predator.

  3. Predatory functional morphology in raptors: interdigital variation in talon size is related to prey restraint and immobilisation technique.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fowler, Denver W; Freedman, Elizabeth A; Scannella, John B

    2009-11-25

    Despite the ubiquity of raptors in terrestrial ecosystems, many aspects of their predatory behaviour remain poorly understood. Surprisingly little is known about the morphology of raptor talons and how they are employed during feeding behaviour. Talon size variation among digits can be used to distinguish families of raptors and is related to different techniques of prey restraint and immobilisation. The hypertrophied talons on digits (D) I and II in Accipitridae have evolved primarily to restrain large struggling prey while they are immobilised by dismemberment. Falconidae have only modest talons on each digit and only slightly enlarged D-I and II. For immobilisation, Falconini rely more strongly on strike impact and breaking the necks of their prey, having evolved a 'tooth' on the beak to aid in doing so. Pandionidae have enlarged, highly recurved talons on each digit, an adaptation for piscivory, convergently seen to a lesser extent in fishing eagles. Strigiformes bear enlarged talons with comparatively low curvature on each digit, part of a suite of adaptations to increase constriction efficiency by maximising grip strength, indicative of specialisation on small prey. Restraint and immobilisation strategy change as prey increase in size. Small prey are restrained by containment within the foot and immobilised by constriction and beak attacks. Large prey are restrained by pinning under the bodyweight of the raptor, maintaining grip with the talons, and immobilised by dismemberment (Accipitridae), or severing the spinal cord (Falconini). Within all raptors, physical attributes of the feet trade off against each other to attain great strength, but it is the variable means by which this is achieved that distinguishes them ecologically. Our findings show that interdigital talon morphology varies consistently among raptor families, and that this is directly correlative with variation in their typical prey capture and restraint strategy.

  4. On the amphibious food uptake and prey manipulation behavior in the Balkan-Anatolian crested newt (Triturus ivanbureschi, Arntzen and Wielstra, 2013).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lukanov, Simeon; Tzankov, Nikolay; Handschuh, Stephan; Heiss, Egon; Naumov, Borislav; Natchev, Nikolay

    2016-06-01

    Feeding behavior in salamanders undergoing seasonal habitat shifts poses substantial challenges caused by differences in the physical properties of air and water. Adapting to these specific environments, urodelans use suction feeding predominantly under water as opposed to lingual food prehension on land. This study aims to determine the functionality of aquatic and terrestrial feeding behavior in the Balkan-Anatolian crested newt (Triturus ivanbureschi) in its terrestrial stage. During the terrestrial stage, these newts feed frequently in water where they use hydrodynamic mechanisms for prey capture. On land, prey apprehension is accomplished mainly by lingual prehension, while jaw prehension seems to be the exception (16.67%) in all terrestrial prey capture events. In jaw prehension events there was no detectable depression of the hyo-lingual complex. The success of terrestrial prey capture was significantly higher when T. ivanbureschi used lingual prehension. In addition to prey capture, we studied the mechanisms involved in the subduction of prey. In both media, the newts frequently used a shaking behavior to immobilize the captured earthworms. Apparently, prey shaking constitutes a significant element in the feeding behavior of T. ivanbureschi. Prey immobilization was applied more frequently during underwater feeding, which necessitates a discussion of the influence of the feeding media on food manipulation. We also investigated the osteology of the cranio-cervical complex in T. ivanbureschi to compare it to that of the predominantly terrestrial salamandrid Salamandra salamandra. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tabitha C Y Hui

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tucker, Marlee A.; Rogers, Tracey L.

    2014-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tucker, Marlee A; Rogers, Tracey L

    2014-12-22

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sargeant, A.B.

    1978-01-01

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

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

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Administrator

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

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Michael; Zhigui, Lin

    1999-01-01

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

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Michael; Zhigui, Lin

    1999-01-01

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

  12. Production of live prey for marine fish larvae

    OpenAIRE

    Kraul, S

    1989-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laundré, John W

    2010-10-01

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

  14. Born Knowing: Tentacled Snakes Innately Predict Future Prey Behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Catania, Kenneth C.

    2010-01-01

    Background Aquatic tentacled snakes (Erpeton tentaculatus) can take advantage of their prey's escape response by startling fish with their body before striking. The feint usually startles fish toward the snake's approaching jaws. But when fish are oriented at a right angle to the jaws, the C-start escape response translates fish parallel to the snake's head. To exploit this latter response, snakes must predict the future location of the fish. Adult snakes can make this prediction. Is it learned, or are tentacled snakes born able to predict future fish behavior? Methods and Findings Laboratory-born, naïve snakes were investigated as they struck at fish. Trials were recorded at 250 or 500 frames per second. To prevent learning, snakes were placed in a water container with a clear transparency sheet or glass bottom. The chamber was placed over a channel in a separate aquarium with fish below. Thus snakes could see and strike at fish, without contact. The snake's body feint elicited C-starts in the fish below the transparency sheet, allowing strike accuracy to be quantified in relationship to the C-starts. When fish were oriented at a right angle to the jaws, naïve snakes biased their strikes to the future location of the escaping fish's head, such that the snake's jaws and the fish's translating head usually converged. Several different types of predictive strikes were observed. Conclusions The results show that some predators have adapted their nervous systems to directly compensate for the future behavior of prey in a sensory realm that usually requires learning. Instead of behavior selected during their lifetime, newborn tentacled snakes exhibit behavior that has been selected on a different scale—over many generations. Counter adaptations in fish are not expected, as tentacled snakes are rare predators exploiting fish responses that are usually adaptive. PMID:20585384

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Madhu Chetri

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Odden, Morten; Wegge, Per

    2017-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chetri, Madhu; Odden, Morten; Wegge, Per

    2017-01-01

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

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kiørboe, Thomas; Titelman, J.

    1998-01-01

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

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jiao Jianjun; Meng Xinzhu; Chen Lansun

    2009-01-01

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

  1. Prey risk allocation in a grazing ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2006-02-01

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

  2. Antipredator responses by native mosquitofish to non-native cichlids: An examination of the role of prey naiveté

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rehage, Jennifer S.; Dunlop, Katherine L.; Loftus, William F.

    2009-01-01

    The strong impact of non-native predators in aquatic systems is thought to relate to the evolutionary naiveté of prey. Due to isolation and limited dispersal, this naiveté may be relatively high in freshwater systems. In this study, we tested this notion by examining the antipredator response of native mosquitofish, Gambusia holbrooki, to two non-native predators found in the Everglades, the African jewelfish,Hemichromis letourneuxi, and the Mayan cichlid, Cichlasoma urophthalmus. We manipulated prey naiveté by using two mosquitofish populations that varied in their experience with the recent invader, the African jewelfish, but had similar levels of experience with the longer-established Mayan cichlid. Specifically, we tested these predictions: (1) predator hunting modes differed between the two predators, (2) predation rates would be higher by the novel jewelfish predator, (3) particularly on the naive population living where jewelfish have not invaded yet, (4) antipredator responses would be stronger to Mayan cichlids due to greater experience and weaker and/or ineffective to jewelfish, and (5) especially weakest by the naive population. We assayed prey and predator behavior, and prey mortality in lab aquaria where both predators and prey were free-ranging. Predator hunting modes and habitat domains differed, with jewelfish being more active search predators that used slightly higher parts of the water column and less of the habitat structure relative to Mayan cichlids. In disagreement with our predictions, predation rates were similar between the two predators, antipredator responses were stronger to African jewelfish (except for predator inspections), and there was no difference in response between jewelfish-savvy and jewelfish-naive populations. These results suggest that despite the novelty of introduced predators, prey may be able to respond appropriately if non-native predator archetypes are similar enough to those of native predators, if prey rely

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Oudman

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

  4. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-06-07

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Feng Hu

    2015-10-01

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

  7. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clare, Elizabeth L; Holderied, Marc W

    2015-09-01

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

  9. Structure and sensitivity analysis of individual-based predator–prey models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Imron, Muhammad Ali; Gergs, Andre; Berger, Uta

    2012-01-01

    The expensive computational cost of sensitivity analyses has hampered the use of these techniques for analysing individual-based models in ecology. A relatively cheap computational cost, referred to as the Morris method, was chosen to assess the relative effects of all parameters on the model’s outputs and to gain insights into predator–prey systems. Structure and results of the sensitivity analysis of the Sumatran tiger model – the Panthera Population Persistence (PPP) and the Notonecta foraging model (NFM) – were compared. Both models are based on a general predation cycle and designed to understand the mechanisms behind the predator–prey interaction being considered. However, the models differ significantly in their complexity and the details of the processes involved. In the sensitivity analysis, parameters that directly contribute to the number of prey items killed were found to be most influential. These were the growth rate of prey and the hunting radius of tigers in the PPP model as well as attack rate parameters and encounter distance of backswimmers in the NFM model. Analysis of distances in both of the models revealed further similarities in the sensitivity of the two individual-based models. The findings highlight the applicability and importance of sensitivity analyses in general, and screening design methods in particular, during early development of ecological individual-based models. Comparison of model structures and sensitivity analyses provides a first step for the derivation of general rules in the design of predator–prey models for both practical conservation and conceptual understanding. - Highlights: ► Structure of predation processes is similar in tiger and backswimmer model. ► The two individual-based models (IBM) differ in space formulations. ► In both models foraging distance is among the sensitive parameters. ► Morris method is applicable for the sensitivity analysis even of complex IBMs.

  10. 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.

  11. Effect of heterotrophic versus autotrophic food on feeding and reproduction of the calanoid copepod Acartia tonsa : relationship with prey fatty acid composition

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Broglio, E.; Jonasdottir, Sigrun; Calbet, A.

    2003-01-01

    Gymnodinium sanguineum. The diets were also analyzed for fatty acid contents and composition, relationships with EPE and reproductive success were determined. Clear differences were found in the fatty acid contents and the composition of the different diets offered, but these differences did not correspond...... with variability in EPE. However, egg viability was correlated with ingestion of certain prey essential fatty acids; interestingly, our data do not show that ciliates and heterotrophic dinoflagellates are nutritionally superior prey for marine copepods, contrary to general expectations....

  12. A snail-eating snake recognizes prey handedness.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-04-05

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

  13. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-12-01

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

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2004-11-22

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

  16. Modelling prey consumption and switching by UK grey seals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2014-01-01

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

  17. Predicting predatory impact of juvenile invasive lionfish (Pterois volitans) on a crustacean prey using functional response analysis: effects of temperature, habitat complexity and light regimes

    KAUST Repository

    South, Josie; Dick, Jaimie T. A.; McCard, Monica; Barrios-O’ Neill, Daniel; Anton, Andrea

    2017-01-01

    The ecological implications of biotic interactions, such as predator-prey relationships, are often context-dependent. Comparative functional responses analysis can be used under different abiotic contexts to improve understanding and prediction

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davidson, Zeke; Valeix, Marion; Van Kesteren, Freya; Loveridge, Andrew J; Hunt, Jane E; Murindagomo, Felix; Macdonald, David W

    2013-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zeke Davidson

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wetter, Melissa B.

    2012-07-01

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

  1. Benthic prey fish assessment, Lake Ontario 2013

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-01

    abundance and weight indices increased slightly as compared to 2012. The number index value of 16.6 was 30% of the maximum number observed in 2008 when the number index was 95.2. Round Goby density estimates from the 2013 fall benthic prey fish survey were 33 times greater than fall Slimy Sculpin density, indicating Round Goby are now the dominant Lake Ontario benthic prey fish.

  2. Prey species as possible sources of PBDE exposures for peregrine falcons (Falco peregrinus) nesting in major California cities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, June-Soo; Fong, Alison; Chu, Vivian; Holden, Arthur; Linthicum, Janet; Hooper, Kim

    2011-04-01

    Our earlier findings indicate that (1) peregrine falcons (Falco peregrinus anatum Bonaparte) nesting in major California cities have among the highest polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE) levels in the world (max ∑PBDEs=100 ppm), and (2) Big City peregrines have higher levels and proportions of the higher-brominated congeners (hepta- to deca-BDEs) than do their Coastal counterparts. In this study we classified the prey species (n =185) from the remains of prey (feathers) at 38 peregrine nest sites over 25 years (1974-1998). We grouped the prey species into 15 categories based on diet and found distinctly different prey patterns for Big City vs. Coastal peregrines. Big City peregrines had a higher (almost three times) weight percentage intake of food waste-eating birds (e.g., rock pigeons, Columba livia) than Coastal peregrines. These differing prey patterns suggest diet as a potential source of the unusually high levels and proportions of higher-brominated PBDEs in Big City peregrines. The relative contributions of diet and dust (e.g., preening) exposure to PBDE patterns in Big City peregrines will be explored in future investigations. © Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grzegorz Orłowski

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

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

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

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

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2012-01-01

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

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

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    spamer

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

  7. The effect of wounds on desiccation of prey: implications for a predator with extra-oral digestion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morse, Douglass H

    1998-06-01

    Predators that inject prey with proteolytic enzymes, thereby breaking down their tissues for subsequent ingestion, run the risk that desiccation will hinder eventual retrieval of resources from these prey. Wounds made in capture might exacerbate this problem. However, desiccation rates of small syrphid flies Toxomerusmarginatus (Diptera: Syrphidae) killed by juvenile crab spiders Misumena vatia (Araneae: Thomisidae) and intact dead syrphid flies did not differ over the normal period of feeding, though desiccation rates in shade and sun differed several-fold. Neither the size of the spider (and presumably the size of the wounds it inflicted) nor the location of the wounds on the flies' bodies affected desiccation rates. Thus, this tactic of prey handling does not exact an added processing cost on Misumena.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thaiany Miranda Costa

    2013-06-01

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

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Swalethorp, Rasmus; Malanski, Evandro; Munk, Peter

    2015-01-01

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

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Moldrup, Morten; Hansen, Per Juel

    2007-01-01

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

  11. 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

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    1990-01-01

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

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

    OpenAIRE

    Ren-Chung Cheng; I-Min Tso

    2007-01-01

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

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

    OpenAIRE

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

    2009-01-01

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

  15. Hepatozoon infection prevalence in four snake genera: influence of diet, prey parasitemia levels, or parasite type?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomé, Beatriz; Maia, João P M C; Harris, D James

    2012-10-01

    Hepatozoon spp. (Apicomplexa: Haemogregarinidae) are the most commonly reported hemoparasites from snakes. Of over 300 Hepatozoon species identified, more than 120 were described from snakes. However, recent genetic assessments have found Hepatozoon lineages recovered from both prey and predators, indicating that diet may play an important role in the infection of final vertebrate hosts. Here 4 different snake genera with different diets were assessed. Hepatozoon spp. prevalence varied greatly between the genera, but only lineages already identified from potential prey, i.e., gecko and lacertid lizards, were recovered from the snakes. Interestingly, the Hepatozoon spp. lineage known from geckos was the most common in the snakes, but this does not reflect their diet. Higher parasitemia levels, reported for some geckos relative to lacertid lizards, may play a role. Alternatively, this lineage may be more effective at parasitizing snakes or may occur, despite being unrecorded, in other vertebrate groups consumed by snakes.

  16. Predator-prey interactions of nematode-trapping fungi and nematodes: both sides of the coin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vidal-Diez de Ulzurrun, Guillermo; Hsueh, Yen-Ping

    2018-05-01

    Nematode-trapping fungi develop complex trapping devices to capture and consume nematodes. The dynamics of these organisms is especially important given the pathogenicity of nematodes and, consequently, the potential application of nematode-trapping fungi as biocontrol agents. Furthermore, both the nematodes and nematode-trapping fungi can be easily grown in laboratories, making them a unique manipulatable predator-prey system to study their coevolution. Several different aspects of these fungi have been studied, such as their genetics and the different factors triggering trap formation. In this review, we use the nematode-trapping fungus Arthrobotrys oligospora (which forms adhesive nets) as a model to describe the trapping process. We divide this process into several stages; namely attraction, recognition, trap formation, adhesion, penetration, and digestion. We summarize the latest findings in the field and current knowledge on the interactions between nematodes and nematode-trapping fungi, representing both sides of the predator-prey interaction.

  17. How does the presence of a conspecific individual change the behavioral game that a predator plays with its prey?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vardi, Reut; Abramsky, Zvika; Kotler, Burt P; Altstein, Ofir; Rosenzweig, Michael L

    2017-07-01

    Behavioral games predators play among themselves may have profound effects on behavioral games predators play with their prey. We studied the behavioral game between predators and prey within the framework of social foraging among predators. We tested how conspecific interactions among predators (little egret) change the predator-prey behavioral game and foraging success. To do so, we examined foraging behavior of egrets alone and in pairs (male and female) in a specially designed aviary consisting of three equally spaced pools with identical initial prey (comet goldfish) densities. Each pool was comprised of a risky microhabitat, rich with food, and a safe microhabitat with no food, forcing the fish to trade off food and safety. When faced with two versus one egret, we found that fish significantly reduced activity in the risky habitat. Egrets in pairs suffered reduced foraging success (negative intraspecific density dependence) and responded to fish behavior and to their conspecific by changing their visiting regime at the different pools-having shorter, more frequent visits. The time egret spent on each visit allowed them to match their long-term capture success rate across the environment to their capture success rate in the pool, which satisfies one aspect of optimality. Overall, egrets in pairs allocated more time for foraging and changed their foraging tactics to focus more on fish under cover and fish 'peeping' out from their shelter. These results suggest that both prey and predator show behavioral flexibility and can adjust to changing conditions as needed in this foraging game.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jérôme Spitz

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

  19. David and Goliath: potent venom of an ant-eating spider (Araneae) enables capture of a giant prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pekár, Stano; Šedo, Onřej; Líznarová, Eva; Korenko, Stanislav; Zdráhal, Zdeněk

    2014-07-01

    It is rare to find a true predator that repeatedly and routinely kills prey larger than itself. A solitary specialised ant-eating spider of the genus Zodarion can capture a relatively giant prey. We studied the trophic niche of this spider species and investigated its adaptations (behavioural and venomic) that are used to capture ants. We found that the spider captures mainly polymorphic Messor arenarius ants. Adult female spiders captured large morphs while tiny juveniles captured smaller morphs, yet in both cases ants were giant in comparison with spider size. All specimens used an effective prey capture strategy that protected them from ant retaliation. Juvenile and adult spiders were able to paralyse their prey using a single bite. The venom glands of adults were more than 50 times larger than those of juvenile spiders, but the paralysis latency of juveniles was 1.5 times longer. This suggests that this spider species possesses very potent venom already at the juvenile stage. Comparison of the venom composition between juvenile and adult spiders did not reveal significant differences. We discovered here that specialised capture combined with very effective venom enables the capture of giant prey.

  20. Polybrominated diphenyl ethers in birds of prey from Northern China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Da; Mai, Bixian; Song, Jie; Sun, Quanhui; Luo, Yong; Luo, Xiaojun; Zeng, Eddy Y; Hale, Robert C

    2007-03-15

    Birds of prey from Northern China (Beijing area) were examined for polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs). A total of 47 specimens from eight different species were analyzed. Muscle and liver were analyzed separately for each bird. Kidneys were pooled by species. Common kestrels exhibited the highest PBDE levels (mean muscle and liver concentrations of 12300 and 12200 ng/g lipid weight, respectively), with maxima in an individual bird of 31700 in muscle and 40900 ng/g lw in liver. Congener profiles differed between some species, but were generally dominated by the more brominated congeners (e.g., BDE-153, -209, -183, -207). BDE-209 was especially elevated compared to other published reports. Interspecies differences in congener concentrations and profiles may be due to diet, behavior, or biotransformation capacities. BDE-209 was detected in 79.4% of the samples. Common kestrels contained the highest BDE-209 levels (mean/maxima of 2150/6220 in muscle and 2870/12200 ng/g lw in liver). BDE-209 was the dominant congener in tissues from some buzzards, scops owls, and long-eared owls. It was the second most abundant congener in common kestrels. The remarkable levels and dominance of BDE-209 may relate to significant production, usage, or disposal of deca-containing products in China. These observations reinforce the growing view that organisms using terrestrial food chains may have greater exposure to BDE-209.

  1. 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.

  2. Matching allele dynamics and coevolution in a minimal predator-prey replicator model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sardanyes, Josep; Sole, Ricard V.

    2008-01-01

    A minimal Lotka-Volterra type predator-prey model describing coevolutionary traits among entities with a strength of interaction influenced by a pair of haploid diallelic loci is studied with a deterministic time continuous model. We show a Hopf bifurcation governing the transition from evolutionary stasis to periodic Red Queen dynamics. If predator genotypes differ in their predation efficiency the more efficient genotype asymptotically achieves lower stationary concentrations

  3. Prey Preference of the Predatory Mite, Amblyseius swirskii between First Instar Western Flower Thrips Frankliniella occidentalis and Nymphs of the Twospotted Spider Mite Tetranychus urticae

    OpenAIRE

    Xu, Xuenong; Enkegaard, Annie

    2010-01-01

    The prey preference of polyphagous predators plays an important role in suppressing different species of pest insects. In this study the prey preference of the predatory mite, Amblyseius swirskii (Athias-Henriot) (Acari: Phytoseiidae) was examined between nymphs of the twospotted spider mite, Tetranychus urticae Koch (Acari: Tetranychidae) and first instar larvae of the western flower thrips, Frankliniella occidentalis (Pergande) (Thysanoptera: Thripidae), as well as between active and chrysa...

  4. Influences of potential predictor variables on gastric evacuation in Atlantic cod Gadus morhua L. feeding on fish prey

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Niels Gerner

    2012-01-01

    of photoperiod and pre-experimental treatment of prey were also tested. Freshly killed A. tobianus were evacuated from the stomach of G. morhua at a rate similar to the value estimated from conspecifics kept deep-frozen and subsequently thawed prior to the evacuation experiment. The evacuation rate in G. morhua...... exposed to continuous light did not differ from the rate obtained from fish maintained under a 12L:12D photoperiod. The evacuation rates estimated from the latter fish in the dark and light periods, respectively, were likewise similar. These results indicate that the resistance of prey to the digestive...

  5. Dynamical phase diagrams of a love capacity constrained prey-predator model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simin, P. Toranj; Jafari, Gholam Reza; Ausloos, Marcel; Caiafa, Cesar Federico; Caram, Facundo; Sonubi, Adeyemi; Arcagni, Alberto; Stefani, Silvana

    2018-02-01

    One interesting question in love relationships is: finally, what and when is the end of this love relationship? Using a prey-predator Verhulst-Lotka-Volterra (VLV) model we imply cooperation and competition tendency between people in order to describe a "love dilemma game". We select the most simple but immediately most complex case for studying the set of nonlinear differential equations, i.e. that implying three persons, being at the same time prey and predator. We describe four different scenarios in such a love game containing either a one-way love or a love triangle. Our results show that it is hard to love more than one person simultaneously. Moreover, to love several people simultaneously is an unstable state. We find some condition in which persons tend to have a friendly relationship and love someone in spite of their antagonistic interaction. We demonstrate the dynamics by displaying flow diagrams.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicola eArmstrong

    2012-12-01

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

  7. Selected radionuclides and heavy metals in skeletons of birds of prey from eastern Poland

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Komosa, A.; Chibowski, S.; Solecki, J.; Orzel, J.; Kitowski, I.; Rozanski, P.

    2009-01-01

    Results of determination of 137 Cs, 90 Sr, 40 K, 239+240 Pu, and heavy metals: Mn, Zn, Pb, Cd, Ni, Cr, Co, and Cu in skeletons of 15 species of birds of prey from Eastern Poland were presented. The greatest amounts of 137 Cs and 90 Sr (70 Bq/kg and 33 Bq/kg, respectively) were found in rough-legged buzzards (Buteo lagopus), winter visitors, coming from former soviet nuclear test places. Concentrations of 239+240 Pu in raptors were negligible, only lesser-spotted eagles (Aquila pomarina) revealed slightly higher values. Median concentrations of 137 Cs and 90 Sr in raptors which feed predominantly on small mammals were higher in comparison to concentrations found in other ones preferring different trophy. The most noticeable was a very high lead concentration (reaching above 600 mg/kg) in birds which utilize un-retrieved hunting casualties as their prey. (author)

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Corinne J Kendall

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matt W Hayward

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-01-01

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

  11. Oscillations and chaos behind predator-prey invasion: mathematical artifact or ecological reality?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sherratt, J. A.; Eagan, B. T.; Lewis, M. A.

    1997-01-01

    A constant dilemma in theoretical ecology is knowing whether model predictions corrspond to real phenomena or whether they are artifacts of the modelling framework. The frequent absence of detailed ecological data against which models can be tested gives this issue particular importance. We address this question in the specific case of invasion in a predator-prey system with oscillatory population kinetics, in which both species exhibit local random movement. Given only these two basic qualitative features, we consider whether we can deduce any properties of the behaviour following invasion. To do this we study four different types of mathematical model, which have no formal relationship, but which all reflect our two qualitative ingredients. The models are: reaction-diffusion equations, coupled map lattices, deterministic cellular automata, and integrodifference equations. We present results of numerical simulations of the invasion of prey by predators for each model, and show that although there are certain differences, the main qualitative features of the behaviour behind invasion are the same for all the models. Specifically, there are either irregular spatiotemporal oscillations behind the invasion, or regular spatiotemporal oscillations with the form of a periodic travelling 'wake', depending on parameter values. The observation of this behaviour in all types of model strongly suggests that it is a direct consequence of our basic qualitative assumptions, and as such is an ecological reality which will always occur behind invasion in actual oscillatory predator-prey systems.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philipp Emanuel Hirsch

    Full Text Available Theory predicts that prey facing a combination of predators with different feeding modes have two options: to express a response against the feeding mode of the most dangerous predator, or to express an intermediate response. Intermediate phenotypes protect equally well against several feeding modes, rather than providing specific protection against a single predator. Anti-predator traits that protect against a common feeding mode displayed by all predators should be expressed regardless of predator combination, as there is no need for trade-offs.We studied phenotypic anti-predator responses of zebra mussels to predation threat from a handling-time-limited (crayfish and a gape-size-limited (roach predator. Both predators dislodge mussels from the substrate but diverge in their further feeding modes. Mussels increased expression of a non-specific defense trait (attachment strength against all combinations of predators relative to a control. In response to roach alone, mussels showed a tendency to develop a weaker and more elongated shell. In response to crayfish, mussels developed a harder and rounder shell. When exposed to either a combination of predators or no predator, mussels developed an intermediate phenotype. Mussel growth rate was positively correlated with an elongated weaker shell and negatively correlated with a round strong shell, indicating a trade-off between anti-predator responses. Field observations of prey phenotypes revealed the presence of both anti-predator phenotypes and the trade-off with growth, but intra-specific population density and bottom substrate had a greater influence than predator density.Our results show that two different predators can exert both functionally equivalent and inverse selection pressures on a single prey. Our field study suggests that abiotic factors and prey population density should be considered when attempting to explain phenotypic diversity in the wild.

  13. Biomechanics of predator-prey arms race in lion, zebra, cheetah and impala

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Alan M.; Hubel, Tatjana Y.; Wilshin, Simon D.; Lowe, John C.; Lorenc, Maja; Dewhirst, Oliver P.; Bartlam-Brooks, Hattie L. A.; Diack, Rebecca; Bennitt, Emily; Golabek, Krystyna A.; Woledge, Roger C.; McNutt, J. Weldon; Curtin, Nancy A.; West, Timothy G.

    2018-02-01

    The fastest and most manoeuvrable terrestrial animals are found in savannah habitats, where predators chase and capture running prey. Hunt outcome and success rate are critical to survival, so both predator and prey should evolve to be faster and/or more manoeuvrable. Here we compare locomotor characteristics in two pursuit predator-prey pairs, lion-zebra and cheetah-impala, in their natural savannah habitat in Botswana. We show that although cheetahs and impalas were universally more athletic than lions and zebras in terms of speed, acceleration and turning, within each predator-prey pair, the predators had 20% higher muscle fibre power than prey, 37% greater acceleration and 72% greater deceleration capacity than their prey. We simulated hunt dynamics with these data and showed that hunts at lower speeds enable prey to use their maximum manoeuvring capacity and favour prey survival, and that the predator needs to be more athletic than its prey to sustain a viable success rate.

  14. The hydrodynamics of predator-prey interactions in zebrafish

    Science.gov (United States)

    McHenry, Matthew; Soto, Alberto; Carrillo, Andres; Byron, Margaret

    2017-11-01

    Hydrodynamics govern the behavior of fishes when they operate as predators or prey. In addition to the role of fluid forces in propulsion, fishes relay on flow stimuli to sense a predatory threat and to localize palatable prey. We have performed a series of experiments on zebrafish (Danio rerio) that aim to resolve the major factors that determine whether prey survive an encounter with a predator. Zebrafish serve as a model system in this pursuit because the adults prey on larvae of the same species and the larvae are often successful in evading the attacks of the adults. We use a combination of theoretical and experimental approaches to resolve the behavioral algorithms and kinematics that determined the outcome of these interactions. In this context, the hydrodynamics of intermediate Reynolds numbers largely determines the range of flow stimuli and the limits to locomotor performance at dictate prey survival. These principles have the potential to apply to a broad diversity of fishes and other aquatic animals. ONR: N00014-15-1-2249.

  15. The effect of prey density on foraging mode selection in juvenile lumpfish: balancing food intake with the metabolic cost of foraging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Killen, Shaun S; Brown, Joseph A; Gamperl, A Kurt

    2007-07-01

    1. In many species, individuals will alter their foraging strategy in response to changes in prey density. However, previous work has shown that prey density has differing effects on the foraging mode decisions of ectotherms as compared with endotherms. This is likely due to differences in metabolic demand; however, the relationship between metabolism and foraging mode choice in ectotherms has not been thoroughly studied. 2. Juvenile lumpfish Cyclopterus lumpus forage using one of two modes: they can actively search for prey while swimming, or they can 'sit-and-wait' for prey while clinging to the substrate using a ventral adhesive disk. The presence of these easily distinguishable foraging modes makes juvenile lumpfish ideal for the study of foraging mode choice in ectotherms. 3. Behavioural observations conducted during laboratory experiments showed that juvenile lumpfish predominantly use the 'cling' foraging mode when prey is abundant, but resort to the more costly 'swim' mode to seek out food when prey is scarce. The metabolic cost of active foraging was also quantified for juvenile lumpfish using swim-tunnel respirometry, and a model was devised to predict the prey density at which lumpfish should switch between the swim and cling foraging modes to maximize energy intake. 4. The results of this model do not agree with previous observations of lumpfish behaviour, and thus it appears that juvenile lumpfish do not try to maximize their net energetic gain. Instead, our data suggest that juvenile lumpfish forage in a manner that reduces activity and conserves space in their limited aerobic scope. This behavioural flexibility is of great benefit to this species, as it allows young individuals to divert energy towards growth as opposed to activity. In a broader context, our results support previous speculation that ectotherms often forage in a manner that maintains a minimum prey encounter rate, but does not necessarily maximize net energy gain.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-06-01

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

  17. Prey size selection and cannibalistic behaviour of juvenile barramundi Lates calcarifer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ribeiro, F F; Qin, J G

    2015-05-01

    This study assessed the cannibalistic behaviour of juvenile barramundi Lates calcarifer and examined the relationship between prey size selection and energy gain of cannibals. Prey handling time and capture success by cannibals were used to estimate the ratio of energy gain to energy cost in prey selection. Cannibals selected smaller prey despite its capability of ingesting larger prey individuals. In behavioural analysis, prey handling time significantly increased with prey size, but it was not significantly affected by cannibal size. Conversely, capture success significantly decreased with the increase of both prey and cannibal sizes. The profitability indices showed that the smaller prey provides the most energy return for cannibals of all size classes. These results indicate that L. calcarifer cannibals select smaller prey for more profitable return. The behavioural analysis, however, indicates that L. calcarifer cannibals attack prey of all size at a similar rate but ingest smaller prey more often, suggesting that prey size selection is passively orientated rather than at the predator's choice. The increase of prey escape ability and morphological constraint contribute to the reduction of intracohort cannibalism as fish grow larger. This study contributes to the understanding of intracohort cannibalism and development of strategies to reduce fish cannibalistic mortalities. © 2015 The Fisheries Society of the British Isles.

  18. Assessment of prey vulnerability through analysis of wolf movements and kill sites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bergman, Eric J; Garrott, Robert A; Creel, Scott; Borkowski, John J; Jaffe, Rosemary; Watson, E G R

    2006-02-01

    Within predator-prey systems behavior can heavily influence spatial dynamics, and accordingly, the theoretical study of how spatial dynamics relate to stability within these systems has a rich history. However, our understanding of these behaviors in large mammalian systems is poorly developed. To address the relationship between predator selection patterns, prey density, and prey vulnerability, we quantified selection patterns for two fine-scale behaviors of a recovering wolf (Canis lupus) population in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA. Wolf spatial data were collected between November and May from 1998-1999 until 2001-2002. Over four winters, 244 aerial locations, 522 ground-based telemetry locations, 1287 km of movement data from snow tracking, and the locations of 279 wolf kill sites were recorded. There was evidence that elk (Cervus elaphus) and bison (Bison bison) densities had a weak effect on the sites where wolves traveled and made kills. Wolf movements showed a strong selection for geothermal areas, meadows, and areas near various types of habitat edges. Proximity to edge and habitat class also had a strong influence on the locations where elk were most vulnerable to predation. There was little evidence that wolf kill sites differed from the places where wolves traveled, indicating that elk vulnerability influenced where wolves selected to travel. Our results indicate that elk are more vulnerable to wolves under certain conditions and that wolves are capable of selecting for these conditions. As such, vulnerability plays a central role in predator-prey behavioral games and can potentially impact the systems to which they relate.

  19. The king of snakes: performance and morphology of intraguild predators (Lampropeltis) and their prey (Pantherophis).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Penning, David A; Moon, Brad R

    2017-03-15

    Across ecosystems and trophic levels, predators are usually larger than their prey, and when trophic morphology converges, predators typically avoid predation on intraguild competitors unless the prey is notably smaller in size. However, a currently unexplained exception occurs in kingsnakes in the genus Lampropeltis Kingsnakes are able to capture, constrict and consume other snakes that are not only larger than themselves but that are also powerful constrictors (such as ratsnakes in the genus Pantherophis ). Their mechanisms of success as intraguild predators on other constrictors remain unknown. To begin addressing these mechanisms, we studied the scaling of muscle cross-sectional area, pulling force and constriction pressure across the ontogeny of six species of snakes ( Lampropeltis californiae , L. getula , L. holbrooki , Pantherophis alleghaniensis , P. guttatus and P. obsoletus ). Muscle cross-sectional area is an indicator of potential force production, pulling force is an indicator of escape performance, and constriction pressure is a measure of prey-handling performance. Muscle cross-sectional area scaled similarly for all snakes, and there was no significant difference in maximum pulling force among species. However, kingsnakes exerted significantly higher pressures on their prey than ratsnakes. The similar escape performance among species indicates that kingsnakes win in predatory encounters because of their superior constriction performance, not because ratsnakes have inferior escape performance. The superior constriction performance by kingsnakes results from their consistent and distinctive coil posture and perhaps from additional aspects of muscle structure and function that need to be tested in future research. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  20. 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.

  1. Dynamic complexities for prey-dependent consumption integrated pest management models with impulsive effects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hui Jing; Zhu Deming

    2006-01-01

    In this paper, we consider the prey-dependent consumption predator-prey (natural enemy-pest) models with age structure for the predator, immature and mature natural enemies are released and pesticide is applied impulsively. We prove that, when the impulsive period is no longer than some threshold, the pest-eradication solution is globally asymptotically stable, or say, the pest population can be eradicated totally. But from the point of ecological balance and saving resources, we only need to control the pest population under the economic threshold level instead of eradicating it totally, so we further prove that, when the impulsive period is longer than the threshold, pest population and natural enemy population can coexist, i.e., the system is uniformly permanent. Considering population communities always are imbedded in periodically varying environments, and the parameters in ecosystem models may oscillate simultaneously with the periodically varying environments, we add a forcing term into the prey population's intrinsic growth rate. From two aspects, i.e., when the period of forcing term is same as the impulsive period and when the two periods are different, we illustrate that, the dynamical behaviors of corresponding impulsive system are very complex

  2. Prey resources before spawning influence gonadal investment of female, but not male, white crappie

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bunnell, D.B.; Thomas, S.E.; Stein, R.A.

    2007-01-01

    In this study, an outdoor pool experiment was used to evaluate the effect of prey resources during 4 months before spawning on the gonadal investments of male and female white crappie Pomoxis annularis, a popular freshwater sportfish that exhibits erratic recruitment. Fish were assigned one of three feeding treatments: starved, fed once every 5 days (intermediate) or fed daily (high). All measurements of male testes (i.e. wet mass, energy density and spermatocrit) were similar across treatments. Conversely, high-fed females produced larger ovaries than those of intermediate-fed and starved fish, and invested more energy in their ovaries than starved fish. Compared to pre-experiment fish, starved and intermediate-fed females appeared to increase their ovary size by relying on liver energy stores (‘capital’ spawning). Conversely, high-fed females increased liver and gonad mass, implying an ‘income’-spawning strategy (where gonads are built from recently acquired energy). Fecundity did not differ among treatments, but high-fed fish built larger eggs than those starved. Females rarely ‘skipped’ spawning opportunities when prey resources were low, as only 8% of starved females and 8% of intermediate-fed females lacked vitellogenic eggs. These results suggest that limited prey resources during the months before spawning can limit ovary production, which, in turn, can limit reproductive success of white crappies.

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

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    Carmina E. Gutiérrez-González

    2017-01-01

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

  4. Aquatic prey capture in snakes: the link between morphology, behavior and hydrodynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Segall, Marion; Herrel, Anthony; Godoy-Diana, Ramiro; Funevol Team; Pmmh Team

    2017-11-01

    Natural selection favors animals that are the most successful in their fitness-related behaviors, such as foraging. Secondary adaptations pose the problem of re-adapting an already 'hypothetically optimized' phenotype to new constraints. When animals forage underwater, they face strong physical constraints, particularly when capturing a prey. The capture requires the predator to be fast and to generate a high acceleration to catch the prey. This involves two main constraints due to the surrounding fluid: drag and added mass. Both of these constraints are related to the shape of the animal. We experimentally explore the relationship between shape and performance in the context of an aquatic strike. As a model, we use 3D-printed snake heads of different shapes and frontal strike kinematics based on in vivo observations. By using direct force measurements, we compare the drag and added mass generated by aquatic and non-aquatic snake models during a strike. Our results show that drag is optimized in aquatic snakes. Added mass appears less important than drag for snakes during an aquatic strike. The flow features associated to the hydrodynamic forces measured allows us to propose a mechanism rendering the shape of the head of aquatic snakes well adapted to catch prey underwater. Region Ile de France and the doctoral school Frontieres du Vivant (FdV) - Programme Bettencourt.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tome, Tania; Carvalho, Kelly C de

    2007-01-01

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

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

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    Vincenzo Penteriani

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

  7. Absence of frequent herpesvirus transmission in a nonhuman primate predator-prey system in the wild.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murthy, Sripriya; Couacy-Hymann, Emmanuel; Metzger, Sonja; Nowak, Kathrin; De Nys, Helene; Boesch, Christophe; Wittig, Roman; Jarvis, Michael A; Leendertz, Fabian H; Ehlers, Bernhard

    2013-10-01

    Emergence of viruses into the human population by transmission from nonhuman primates (NHPs) represents a serious potential threat to human health that is primarily associated with the increased bushmeat trade. Transmission of RNA viruses across primate species appears to be relatively frequent. In contrast, DNA viruses appear to be largely host specific, suggesting low transmission potential. Herein, we use a primate predator-prey system to study the risk of herpesvirus transmission between different primate species in the wild. The system was comprised of western chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes verus) and their primary (western red colobus, Piliocolobus badius badius) and secondary (black-and-white colobus, Colobus polykomos) prey monkey species. NHP species were frequently observed to be coinfected with multiple beta- and gammaherpesviruses (including new cytomegalo- and rhadinoviruses). However, despite frequent exposure of chimpanzees to blood, organs, and bones of their herpesvirus-infected monkey prey, there was no evidence for cross-species herpesvirus transmission. These findings suggest that interspecies transmission of NHP beta- and gammaherpesviruses is, at most, a rare event in the wild.

  8. Winter wolf predation in a multiple ungulate prey system, Gates of the Arctic National Park, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dale, Bruce W.; Adams, Layne G.; Bowyer, R. Terry; Carbyn, Ludwig N.; Fritts, Steven H.; Seip, Dale R.

    1995-01-01

    We investigated patterns of winter wolf predation, including prey selection, prey switching, kill rates, carcass utilization, and consumption rates for four wolf packs during three different study periods (March 1989, March 1990, and November 1990) in Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve, Alaska. Wolves killed predominantly caribou (165 caribou, seven moose, and five Dall sheep) even when moose and sheep were more abundant. Prey selection varied between study periods. More moose were killed in march 1989, a particularly deep snow year, and more sheep were killed in November 1990 than during other periods. Overall kill rates ranged from 0-8 days/ungulate killed (x̅ = 2.0, SD = 1.6) and did not vary between study periods.  Pack size and species killed explained significant variation in the length of time intervals between kills. Although caribou density varied nearly 40-fold between pack territories, it had little influence on predation characteristics except at low densities, when kill rates may have declined. Caribou distribution had marked effects on wolf predation rate.

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

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    Pedro Afonso

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Penteriani, Vincenzo; Delgado, Maria del Mar

    2008-08-20

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

  11. Using radioecological data to determine prey selection by the Alaska wolf

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Holleman, D.F.; Luick, J.R.

    1978-01-01

    Recently the predation of the Alaska wolf (Canis lupus pambasileus) upon various species of big game has been the subject of considerable controversy between game management specialists and environmentalists. The basis of this controversy centers primarily on the selectivity and extent of prey utilization by the wolf. This report suggests how radioecological data can be used to assess both qualitative and quantitative aspects of wolf predation. Primary prey species of the wolf have distinctly different fallout radiocesium body burdens; e.g., reindeer/caribou have high radiocesium body burdens, whereas moose and small game have low radiocesium body burdens. Consequently, the resulting radiocesium body burden of the wolf depends upon the type and quantity of prey species consumed. Laboratory measurements for this study show a wide variation of radiocesium concentrations of skeletal muscle of wolves within Alaska. Values ranged from 263 to 17,300 pCi 137 Cs/kg of wet muscle. These data relate to known degrees of reindeer/caribou predation by the wolves. A radiocesium kinetic model was constructed from data obtained with wolves and other arctic carnivores and was used to estimate reindeer/caribou intake by wolves. Estimates ranged from 40 to 1650 g of reindeer/caribou muscle per day per wolf. Although the application has limitations, it could yield useful information for evaluating the food habits of wolves, especially in areas of the state where it is important to know the extent of reindeer/caribou utilization by the wolf

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

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    Camille de la Vega

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

  13. Fear on the move: predator hunting mode predicts variation in prey mortality and plasticity in prey spatial response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Jennifer R B; Ament, Judith M; Schmitz, Oswald J

    2014-01-01

    Ecologists have long searched for a framework of a priori species traits to help predict predator-prey interactions in food webs. Empirical evidence has shown that predator hunting mode and predator and prey habitat domain are useful traits for explaining predator-prey interactions. Yet, individual experiments have yet to replicate predator hunting mode, calling into question whether predator impacts can be attributed to hunting mode or merely species identity. We tested the effects of spider predators with sit-and-wait, sit-and-pursue and active hunting modes on grasshopper habitat domain, activity and mortality in a grassland system. We replicated hunting mode by testing two spider predator species of each hunting mode on the same grasshopper prey species. We observed grasshoppers with and without each spider species in behavioural cages and measured their mortality rates, movements and habitat domains. We likewise measured the movements and habitat domains of spiders to characterize hunting modes. We found that predator hunting mode explained grasshopper mortality and spider and grasshopper movement activity and habitat domain size. Sit-and-wait spider predators covered small distances over a narrow domain space and killed fewer grasshoppers than sit-and-pursue and active predators, which ranged farther distances across broader domains and killed more grasshoppers, respectively. Prey adjusted their activity levels and horizontal habitat domains in response to predator presence and hunting mode: sedentary sit-and-wait predators with narrow domains caused grasshoppers to reduce activity in the same-sized domain space; more mobile sit-and-pursue predators with broader domains caused prey to reduce their activity within a contracted horizontal (but not vertical) domain space; and highly mobile active spiders led grasshoppers to increase their activity across the same domain area. All predators impacted prey activity, and sit-and-pursue predators generated strong

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura K Helenius

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

  15. Prey and Non-prey Arthropods Sharing a Host Plant: Effects on Induced Volatile Emission and Predator Attraction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hordijk, Cornelis A.; Posthumus, Maarten A.; Dicke, Marcel

    2008-01-01

    It is well established that plants infested with a single herbivore species can attract specific natural enemies through the emission of herbivore-induced volatiles. However, it is less clear what happens when plants are simultaneously attacked by more than one species. We analyzed volatile emissions of lima bean and cucumber plants upon multi-species herbivory by spider mites (Tetranychus urticae) and caterpillars (Spodoptera exigua) in comparison to single-species herbivory. Upon herbivory by single or multiple species, lima bean and cucumber plants emitted volatile blends that comprised mostly the same compounds. To detect additive, synergistic, or antagonistic effects, we compared the multi-species herbivory volatile blend with the sum of the volatile blends induced by each of the herbivore species feeding alone. In lima bean, the majority of compounds were more strongly induced by multi-species herbivory than expected based on the sum of volatile emissions by each of the herbivores separately, potentially caused by synergistic effects. In contrast, in cucumber, two compounds were suppressed by multi-species herbivory, suggesting the potential for antagonistic effects. We also studied the behavioral responses of the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis, a specialized natural enemy of spider mites. Olfactometer experiments showed that P. persimilis preferred volatiles induced by multi-species herbivory to volatiles induced by S. exigua alone or by prey mites alone. We conclude that both lima bean and cucumber plants effectively attract predatory mites upon multi-species herbivory, but the underlying mechanisms appear different between these species. PMID:18185960

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-01-01

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

  17. Release from prey preservation behavior via prey switch allowed diversification of cuticular hydrocarbon profiles in digger wasps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wurdack, Mareike; Polidori, Carlo; Keller, Alexander; Feldhaar, Heike; Schmitt, Thomas

    2017-11-01

    The cuticle of insects is covered by a layer of hydrocarbons (CHC), whose original function is the protection from desiccation and pathogens. However, in most insects CHC profiles are species specific. While this variability among species was largely linked to communication and recognition functions, additional selective forces may shape insect CHC profiles. Here, we show that in Philanthinae digger wasps (Crabronidae) the CHC profile coevolved with a peculiar brood-care strategy. In particular, we found that the behavior to embalm prey stored in the nest with hydrocarbons is adaptive to protect larval food from fungi in those species hunting for Hymenoptera. The prey embalming secretion is identical in composition to the alkene-dominated CHC profile in these species, suggesting that their profile is adaptively conserved for this purpose. In contrast, prey embalming is not required in those species that switched to Coleoptera as prey. Released from this chemical brood-care strategy, Coleoptera-hunting species considerably diversified their CHC profiles. Differential needs to successfully protect prey types used as larval food have thus driven the diversification of CHCs profiles of female Philanthinae wasps. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first evidence of a direct link between selection pressure for food preservation and CHC diversity. © 2017 The Author(s). Evolution © 2017 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  18. Spatial match-mismatch between juvenile fish and prey provides a mechanism for recruitment variability across contrasting climate conditions in the eastern Bering Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siddon, Elizabeth Calvert; Kristiansen, Trond; Mueter, Franz J; Holsman, Kirstin K; Heintz, Ron A; Farley, Edward V

    2013-01-01

    Understanding mechanisms behind variability in early life survival of marine fishes through modeling efforts can improve predictive capabilities for recruitment success under changing climate conditions. Walleye pollock (Theragra chalcogramma) support the largest single-species commercial fishery in the United States and represent an ecologically important component of the Bering Sea ecosystem. Variability in walleye pollock growth and survival is structured in part by climate-driven bottom-up control of zooplankton composition. We used two modeling approaches, informed by observations, to understand the roles of prey quality, prey composition, and water temperature on juvenile walleye pollock growth: (1) a bioenergetics model that included local predator and prey energy densities, and (2) an individual-based model that included a mechanistic feeding component dependent on larval development and behavior, local prey densities and size, and physical oceanographic conditions. Prey composition in late-summer shifted from predominantly smaller copepod species in the warmer 2005 season to larger species in the cooler 2010 season, reflecting differences in zooplankton composition between years. In 2010, the main prey of juvenile walleye pollock were more abundant, had greater biomass, and higher mean energy density, resulting in better growth conditions. Moreover, spatial patterns in prey composition and water temperature lead to areas of enhanced growth, or growth 'hot spots', for juvenile walleye pollock and survival may be enhanced when fish overlap with these areas. This study provides evidence that a spatial mismatch between juvenile walleye pollock and growth 'hot spots' in 2005 contributed to poor recruitment while a higher degree of overlap in 2010 resulted in improved recruitment. Our results indicate that climate-driven changes in prey quality and composition can impact growth of juvenile walleye pollock, potentially severely affecting recruitment variability.

  19. 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.

  20. Are owl pellets good estimators of prey abundance?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Analia Andrade

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Some ecologists have been skeptics about the use of owl pellets to estimate small mammal’s fauna. This is due to the assumptions required by this method: (a that owls hunt at random, and (b that pellets represent a random sample from the environment. We performed statistical analysis to test these assumptions and to assess the effectiveness of Barn owl pellets as a useful estimator of field abundances of its preys. We used samples collected in the arid Extra-Andean Patagonia along an altitudinal environmental gradient from lower Monte ecoregion to upper Patagonian steppe ecoregion, with a mid-elevation ecotone. To test if owls hunt at random, we estimated expected pellet frequency by creating a distribution of random pellets, which we compared with data using a simulated chi-square. To test if pellets represent a random sample from the environment, differences between ecoregions were evaluated by PERMANOVAs with Bray–Curtis dissimilarities. We did not find evidence that owls foraged non-randomly. Therefore, we can assume that the proportions of the small mammal’s species in the diet are representative of the proportions of the species in their communities. Only Monte is different from other ecoregions. The ecotone samples are grouped with those of Patagonian steppes. There are no real differences between localities in the small mammal’s abundances in each of these ecoregions and/or Barn owl pellets cannot detect patterns at a smaller spatial scale. Therefore, we have no evidence to invalidate the use of owl pellets at an ecoregional scale.

  1. Sediment-induced turbidity impairs foraging performance and prey choice of planktivorous coral reef fishes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johansen, J L; Jones, G P

    2013-09-01

    Sedimentation is a substantial threat to aquatic ecosystems and a primary cause of habitat degradation on near-shore coral reefs. Although numerous studies have demonstrated major impacts of sedimentation and turbidity on corals, virtually nothing is known of the sensitivity of reef fishes. Planktivorous fishes are an important trophic group that funnels pelagic energy sources into reef ecosystems. These fishes are visual predators whose foraging is likely to be impaired by turbidity, but the threshold for such effects and their magnitude are unknown. This study examined the effect of sediment-induced turbidity on foraging in four species of planktivorous damselfishes (Pomacentridae) of the Great Barrier Reef, including inshore and offshore species that potentially differ in tolerance for turbidity. An experimental flow tunnel was used to quantify their ability to catch mobile and immobile planktonic prey under different levels of turbidity and velocity in the range encountered on natural and disturbed reefs. Turbidity of just 4 NTU (nephelometric turbidity units) reduced average attack success by up to 56%, with higher effect sizes for species with offshore distributions. Only the inshore species (Neopomacentrus bankieri), which frequently encounters this turbidity on coastal reefs, could maintain high prey capture success. At elevated turbidity similar to that found on disturbed reefs (8 NTU), attack success was reduced in all species examined by up to 69%. These reductions in attack success led to a 21-24% decrease in foraging rates for all mid to outer-shelf species, in spite of increasing attack rates at high turbidity. Although effects of turbidity varied among species, it always depended heavily on prey mobility and ambient velocity. Attack success was up to 14 times lower on mobile prey, leaving species relatively incapable of foraging on anything but immobile prey at high turbidity. Effects of turbidity were particularly prominent at higher velocities, as

  2. 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...

  3. Relationships of body lengths with mouth opening and prey length of nemipterid fishes (Regan, 1913 in the Gulf of Thailand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mithun Paul

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available This study aims to investigate the relationship among total length (TL of fish with mouth opening namely horizontal opening (MH, vertical opening (VH, mouth area (MA and fork length (FL of seven sympatric nemipterid fish species and to know the relationship between total length and consumed prey length of five sympatric species sampled from the Gulf of Thailand in 2015. A total 883 fish were investigated collected from both cruise surveys and fishing port survey. TL was linearly and log-linearly related with both MV and MH for three and four species, respectively. MA’s were always the log linear relation of TL and shapes were nearly oval for all species. FL in all TL-FL relationships were proportional to the TL’s in all species (r2 = 0.94, P  .5 and in invertebrate prey items for N. tambuloides (P > .5. So, this study clearly confirms that nemipterid fishes of different sizes feed on all different specific prey items according to its own body size and feed according to size class for prey items available nearby.

  4. Spatial variation of mercury levels in nesting Bonelli's eagles from Southwest Portugal: effects of diet composition and prey contamination

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Palma, Luis; Beja, Pedro; Tavares, Paula C.; Monteiro, Luis R.

    2005-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) was determined in adult Bonelli's eagles (Hieraaetus fasciatus) and their avian prey, from samples of feathers collected between 1992 and 2001 at the nesting sites of 21 pairs in Southwest Portugal. Eagle Hg levels showed great variation, reflecting primarily differences in diet composition and food chain biomagnification. Concentrations were positively correlated with the dietary proportion of insectivorous and omnivorous birds (e.g. egrets, corvids and thrushes), with very low levels for pairs feeding mainly on herbivores (e.g. rabbits, pigeons and partridges). Differences in prey contamination among breeding territories added to dietary effects in determining variation of Hg levels in eagles, shaping a spatial pattern that was largely consistent with a source of contamination in a coal-burning power-plant lying upwind of the study area. Despite this presumed contamination, Hg levels seemed to be of little concern to this eagle population, though there might be subtle deleterious effects on the reproductive output of a few pairs. This study emphasizes the need to account for dietary effects when biomonitoring Hg contamination using birds of prey. - The effects of diet composition and prey contamination added up to determine the spatial variation of Hg levels in breeding Bonelli's eagles

  5. Predator-Prey Dynamics in the Mesopelagic: Odontocete Foraging Ecology and Anti-predator Behavior of Prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benoit-Bird, K. J.

    2016-02-01

    We explored the behavior of Risso's dolphins foraging in scattering layers off California using an integrated approach comprising echosounders deployed in a deep-diving autonomous underwater vehicle, ship based acoustics, visual observations, direct prey sampling, and animal-borne tags on deep-diving predators. We identified three distinct prey layers: a persistent layer around 425 m, a vertically migrating layer around 300 m, and a layer intermittently present near 50 m, all of which were used by individual tagged animals. Active acoustic measurements demonstrated that Risso's dolphins dove to discrete prey layers throughout the day and night with only slightly higher detection rates at night. Dolphins were detected in all three layers during the day with over half of detections in the middle layer, 20% of detections in the deepest layer, and 10% falling outside the main layers. Dolphins were found less frequently in areas where the shallow, intermittent layer was absent, suggesting that this layer, while containing the smallest prey and the lowest densities of squid, was an important component of their foraging strategy. The deepest layer was targeted equally both during the day and at night. Using acoustic data collected from the AUV, we found layers were made up of distinct, small patches of animals of similar size and taxonomy adjacent to contrasting patches. Squid made up over 70% of the patches in which dolphins were found and more than 95% of those in deep water. Squid targeted by dolphins in deep water were also relatively large, indicating significant benefit from these relatively rare, physically demanding dives. Within these patches, prey formed tighter aggregations when Risso's dolphins were present. Careful integration of a suite of traditional and novel tools is providing insight into the ecology and dynamics of predator and prey in the mesopelagic.

  6. Colour polymorphic lures exploit innate preferences for spectral versus luminance cues in dipteran prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Thomas E; Kemp, Darrell J

    2017-08-14

    stimuli at close range), our results demonstrate an effect of apparent stimulus size upon relative morph attractiveness in the direction anticipated from present knowledge of fly visual ecology. This implies the potential tuning of G. fornicata morph signal structure according to a perceptual feature that is likely common across their breadth of arthropod prey, and complements recent observational work in suggesting a candidate mechanism for the maintenance of deceptive polymorphism through the exploitation of different visual channels in prey.

  7. Bifurcations and feedback control of a stage-structure exploited prey ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    user

    Here, we have considered a stage structure prey-predator model with stage structure for ... N over the prey ,N β is the transition rate from mature predator population 2 ...... Mathematical Bioeconomics: The Optimal Management of Renewable ...

  8. An Objective Approach to Determining the Weight Ranges of Prey Preferred by and Accessible to the Five Large African Carnivores

    OpenAIRE

    Clements, Hayley S.; Tambling, Craig J.; Hayward, Matt W.; Kerley, Graham I. H.

    2014-01-01

    Broad-scale models describing predator prey preferences serve as useful departure points for understanding predator-prey interactions at finer scales. Previous analyses used a subjective approach to identify prey weight preferences of the five large African carnivores, hence their accuracy is questionable. This study uses a segmented model of prey weight versus prey preference to objectively quantify the prey weight preferences of the five large African carnivores. Based on simulations of kno...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-10-01

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

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2011-01-01

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

  11. Prey, but not plant, chemical discrimination by the lizard ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    We experimentally studied responses to food chemicals by Gerrhosaurus nigrolineatus, amember of a lizard genus endemic to subsaharan Africa. Gerrhosaur diets vary from insectivorous to omnivorous with a very large plant portion. The omnivorous G. validus responds strongly to chemical cues from prey and food plants.

  12. Hydrodynamics of prey capture in sharks : effects of substrate

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nauwelaerts, Sandra; Wilga, Cheryl; Sanford, Christopher; Lauder, George

    2007-01-01

    In suction feeding, a volume of water is drawn into the mouth of a predator. Previous studies of suction feeding in fishes have shown that significant fluid velocities are confined to a region within one mouth width from the mouth. Therefore, the predator must be relatively close to the prey to

  13. Direct identification of predator-prey dynamics in gyrokinetic simulations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kobayashi, Sumire, E-mail: sumire.kobayashi@lpp.polytechnique.fr; Gürcan, Özgür D [Laboratoire de Physique des Plasmas, CNRS, Paris-Sud, Ecole Polytechnique, UMR7648, F-91128 Palaiseau (France); Diamond, Patrick H. [University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, California 92093-0319 (United States)

    2015-09-15

    The interaction between spontaneously formed zonal flows and small-scale turbulence in nonlinear gyrokinetic simulations is explored in a shearless closed field line geometry. It is found that when clear limit cycle oscillations prevail, the observed turbulent dynamics can be quantitatively captured by a simple Lotka-Volterra type predator-prey model. Fitting the time traces of full gyrokinetic simulations by such a reduced model allows extraction of the model coefficients. Scanning physical plasma parameters, such as collisionality and density gradient, it was observed that the effective growth rates of turbulence (i.e., the prey) remain roughly constant, in spite of the higher and varying level of primary mode linear growth rates. The effective growth rate that was extracted corresponds roughly to the zonal-flow-modified primary mode growth rate. It was also observed that the effective damping of zonal flows (i.e., the predator) in the parameter range, where clear predator-prey dynamics is observed, (i.e., near marginal stability) agrees with the collisional damping expected in these simulations. This implies that the Kelvin-Helmholtz-like instability may be negligible in this range. The results imply that when the tertiary instability plays a role, the dynamics becomes more complex than a simple Lotka-Volterra predator prey.

  14. Prey capture success and chick diet of Damara terns Sterna ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Feeding terns are affected by a variety of environmental conditions. We studied prey capture success of Damara terns Sterna balaenarum in relation to six variables at two breeding colonies in southern Namibia: tidal phase, wind speed, water clarity, cloud cover, water depth and locality. Damara terns dived most ...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nelika K Hughes

    2010-09-01

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

  16. Insectivorous birds eavesdrop on the pheromones of their prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saavedra, Irene; Amo, Luisa

    2018-01-01

    Chemical cues play a fundamental role in mate attraction and mate choice. Lepidopteran females, such as the winter moth (Operophtera brumata), emit pheromones to attract males in the reproductive period. However, these chemical cues could also be eavesdropped by predators. To our knowledge, no studies have examined whether birds can detect pheromones of their prey. O. brumata adults are part of the winter diet of some insectivorous tit species, such as the great tit (Parus major) and blue tit (Cyanistes caeruleus). We performed a field experiment aimed to disentangle whether insectivorous birds can exploit the pheromones emitted by their prey for prey location. We placed artificial larvae and a dispenser on branches of Pyrenean oak trees (Quercus pyrenaica). In half of the trees we placed an O. brumata pheromone dispenser and in the other half we placed a control dispenser. We measured the predation rate of birds on artificial larvae. Our results show that more trees had larvae with signs of avian predation when they contained an O. brumata pheromone than when they contained a control dispenser. Furthermore, the proportion of artificial larvae with signs of avian predation was greater in trees that contained the pheromone than in control trees. Our results indicate that insectivorous birds can exploit the pheromones emitted by moth females to attract males, as a method of prey detection. These results highlight the potential use of insectivorous birds in the biological control of insect pests.

  17. 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.

  18. Lionfish misidentification circumvents an optimized escape response by prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCormick, Mark I; Allan, Bridie J M

    2016-01-01

    Invasive lionfish represent an unprecedented problem in the Caribbean basin, where they are causing major changes to foodwebs and habitats through their generalized predation on fishes and invertebrates. To ascertain what makes the red lionfish ( Pterois volitans ) such a formidable predator, we examined the reaction of a native damselfish prey, the whitetail damsel ( Pomacentrus chrysurus ), to a repeatable startle stimulus once they had been forewarned of the sight or smell of lionfish. Fast-start responses were compared with prey forewarned of a predatory rockcod ( Cephalopholis microprion ), a corallivorous butterflyfish ( Chaetodon trifasctiatus ) and experimental controls. Forewarning of the sight, smell or a combination of the two cues from a rockcod led to reduced escape latencies and higher response distances, speed and maximal speed compared with controls, suggesting that forewarning primed the prey and enabled a more effective escape response. In contrast, forewarning of lionfish did not affect the fast-start kinematics measured, which were the same as in the control and non-predatory butterflyfish treatments. Lionfish appear to be able to circumvent mechanisms commonly used by prey to identify predators and were misclassified as non-predatory, and this is likely to contribute to their success as predators.

  19. Testing for Camouflage Using Virtual Prey and Human "Predators"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Todd, Peter A.

    2009-01-01

    Camouflage is a prevalent feature of the natural world and as such has a ready appeal to students; however, it is a difficult subject to study using real predators and prey. This paper focuses how one fundamental type of camouflage, disruptive colouration (bold markings that break up the outline of the organism), can be tested using paper…

  20. Prey partitioning and use of insects by juvenile sockeye salmon and a potential competitor, threespine stickleback, in Afognak Lake, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richardson, Natura; Beaudreau, Anne H.; Wipfli, Mark S.; Finkle, Heather

    2017-01-01

    Freshwater growth of juvenile sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) depends upon the quality and quantity of prey and interactions with potential competitors in the foraging environment. To a large extent, knowledge about the ecology of lake-rearing juvenile sockeye salmon has emerged from studies of commercially important runs returning to deep nursery lakes, yet information from shallow nursery lakes (mean depth ≤ 10 m) is limited. We examined seasonal and ontogenetic variation in diets of juvenile sockeye salmon (N = 219, 30–85 mm) and an abundant potential competitor, threespine stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus; N = 198, 42–67 mm), to understand their foraging ecology and potential trophic interactions in a shallow Alaska lake. This study revealed that adult insects made up 74% of all sockeye salmon diets by weight and were present in 98% of all stomachs in Afognak Lake during the summer of 2013. Diets varied temporally for all fishes, but small sockeye salmon (insects in late summer. We found significant differences in diet composition between sockeye salmon and threespine stickleback and the origin of their prey indicated that they also separated their use of habitat on a fine scale; however, the two species showed overlap in size selectivity of zooplankton prey. Considering that aquatic insects can be a primary resource for juvenile sockeye salmon in Afognak Lake, we encourage the development of nursery lake carrying capacity models that include aquatic insects as a prey source for sockeye salmon.

  1. Turing patterns induced by cross-diffusion in a predator-prey system in presence of habitat complexity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ghorai, Santu; Poria, Swarup

    2016-01-01

    In this paper, we have investigated the phenomena of Turing pattern formation in a predator-prey model with habitat complexity in presence of cross diffusion. Using the linear stability analysis, the conditions for the existence of stationary pattern and the existence of Hopf bifurcation are obtained. It is shown analytically that the presence of cross diffusion in the system supports the formation of Turing pattern. Two parameter bifurcation analysis are done analytically and corresponding bifurcation diagrams are presented numerically. A series of simulation results are plotted for different biologically meaningful parameter values. Effects of variation of habitat complexity and the predator mortality rate and birth rate of prey on pattern formation are also reported. It is shown that cross-diffusion can lead to a wide variety of spatial and spatiotemporal pattern formation. It is found that the model exhibits spot and stripe pattern, and coexistence of both spot and strip patterns under the zero flux boundary condition. It is observed that cross-diffusion, habitat complexity, birth rate of prey and predator’s mortality rate play a significant role in the pattern formation of a distributed population system of predator-prey type.

  2. The relative influence of prey abundance and co-breeders on the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This study investigates if the reproductive performance of polyandrous Pale Chanting-goshawks, Melierax canorus, is governed by the abundance of dominant rodent-prey species or a co-breeding male participating fully in prey being delivered to the female and young. Polyandrous trios in prey-rich habitat, the only habitat ...

  3. Irreversible prey diapause as an optimal strategy of a physiologically extended Lotka-Volterra model

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Staňková, K.; Abate, A.; Sabelis, M.W.

    2013-01-01

    We propose an optimal control framework to describe intra-seasonal predator-prey interactions, which are characterized by a continuous-time dynamical model comprising predator and prey density, as well as the energy budget of the prey over the length of a season. The model includes a time-dependent

  4. 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.

  5. Sea urchins, their predators and prey in SW Portugal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nuno Mamede

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Sea urchins play a key role structuring benthic communities of rocky shores through an intense herbivory. The most abundant sea urchin species on shallow rocky subtidal habitats of the SW coast of Portugal is Paracentrotus lividus (Echinodermata: Echinoidea. It is considered a key species in various locations throughout its geographical distribution by affecting the structure of macroalgae communities and may cause the abrupt transformation of habitats dominated by foliose algae to habitats dominated by encrusting algae - the urchin barrens. The removal of P. lividus predators by recreational and commercial fishing is considered a major cause of this phenomenon by affecting the trophic relationships between predators, sea urchins and algae communities. Marine protected areas (MPAs usually lead to the recovery of important predator species that control sea urchin populations and restore habitats dominated by foliose macroalgae. Therefore, MPAs provide a good opportunity to test cascading effects and indirect impacts of fishing at the ecosystem level. The ecological role of P. lividus was studied on rocky subtidal habitats of the SW coast of Portugal (Alentejo considering three trophic levels: population of P. lividus, their predators (fish and shellfish and their prey (macroalgae communities. Several studies were conducted: (1 a non-destructive observational study on the abundance and distribution patterns of P. lividus, their predators and preys, comparing areas with different protection; (2 a manipulative in situ study with cages to assess the role of P. lividus as an herbivore and the influence of predation; (3 a descriptive study of P. lividus predators based on underwater filming; (4 and a study of human perception on these trophic relationships and other issues on sea urchin ecology and fishery, based on surveys made to fishermen and divers. Subtidal studies were performed with SCUBA diving at 3-12 m deep. Results indicate that in the

  6. Physics-based simulations of aerial attacks by peregrine falcons reveal that stooping at high speed maximizes catch success against agile prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mills, Robin; Hildenbrandt, Hanno; Taylor, Graham K; Hemelrijk, Charlotte K

    2018-04-01

    The peregrine falcon Falco peregrinus is renowned for attacking its prey from high altitude in a fast controlled dive called a stoop. Many other raptors employ a similar mode of attack, but the functional benefits of stooping remain obscure. Here we investigate whether, when, and why stooping promotes catch success, using a three-dimensional, agent-based modeling approach to simulate attacks of falcons on aerial prey. We simulate avian flapping and gliding flight using an analytical quasi-steady model of the aerodynamic forces and moments, parametrized by empirical measurements of flight morphology. The model-birds' flight control inputs are commanded by their guidance system, comprising a phenomenological model of its vision, guidance, and control. To intercept its prey, model-falcons use the same guidance law as missiles (pure proportional navigation); this assumption is corroborated by empirical data on peregrine falcons hunting lures. We parametrically vary the falcon's starting position relative to its prey, together with the feedback gain of its guidance loop, under differing assumptions regarding its errors and delay in vision and control, and for three different patterns of prey motion. We find that, when the prey maneuvers erratically, high-altitude stoops increase catch success compared to low-altitude attacks, but only if the falcon's guidance law is appropriately tuned, and only given a high degree of precision in vision and control. Remarkably, the optimal tuning of the guidance law in our simulations coincides closely with what has been observed empirically in peregrines. High-altitude stoops are shown to be beneficial because their high airspeed enables production of higher aerodynamic forces for maneuvering, and facilitates higher roll agility as the wings are tucked, each of which is essential to catching maneuvering prey at realistic response delays.

  7. Predicting predatory impact of juvenile invasive lionfish (Pterois volitans) on a crustacean prey using functional response analysis: effects of temperature, habitat complexity and light regimes

    KAUST Repository

    South, Josie

    2017-07-01

    The ecological implications of biotic interactions, such as predator-prey relationships, are often context-dependent. Comparative functional responses analysis can be used under different abiotic contexts to improve understanding and prediction of the ecological impact of invasive species. Pterois volitans (Lionfish) [Linnaeus 1758] is an established invasive species in the Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico, with a more recent invasion into the Mediterranean. Lionfish are generalist predators that impact a wide range of commercial and non-commercial species. Functional response analysis was employed to quantify interaction strength between lionfish and a generic prey species, the shrimp (Paleomonetes varians) [Leach 1814], under the contexts of differing temperature, habitat complexity and light wavelength. Lionfish have prey population destabilising Type II functional responses under all contexts examined. Significantly more prey were consumed at 26 °C than at 22 °C. Habitat complexity did not significantly alter the functional response parameters. Significantly more prey were consumed under white light and blue light than under red light. Attack rate was significantly higher under white light than under blue or red light. Light wavelength did not significantly change handling times. The impacts on prey populations through feeding rates may increase with concomitant temperature increase. As attack rates are very high at low habitat complexity this may elucidate the cause of high impact upon degraded reef ecosystems with low-density prey populations, although there was little protection conferred through habitat complexity. Only red light (i.e. dark) afforded any reduction in predation pressure. Management initiatives should account for these environmental factors when planning mitigation and prevention strategies.

  8. Physics-based simulations of aerial attacks by peregrine falcons reveal that stooping at high speed maximizes catch success against agile prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robin Mills

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The peregrine falcon Falco peregrinus is renowned for attacking its prey from high altitude in a fast controlled dive called a stoop. Many other raptors employ a similar mode of attack, but the functional benefits of stooping remain obscure. Here we investigate whether, when, and why stooping promotes catch success, using a three-dimensional, agent-based modeling approach to simulate attacks of falcons on aerial prey. We simulate avian flapping and gliding flight using an analytical quasi-steady model of the aerodynamic forces and moments, parametrized by empirical measurements of flight morphology. The model-birds' flight control inputs are commanded by their guidance system, comprising a phenomenological model of its vision, guidance, and control. To intercept its prey, model-falcons use the same guidance law as missiles (pure proportional navigation; this assumption is corroborated by empirical data on peregrine falcons hunting lures. We parametrically vary the falcon's starting position relative to its prey, together with the feedback gain of its guidance loop, under differing assumptions regarding its errors and delay in vision and control, and for three different patterns of prey motion. We find that, when the prey maneuvers erratically, high-altitude stoops increase catch success compared to low-altitude attacks, but only if the falcon's guidance law is appropriately tuned, and only given a high degree of precision in vision and control. Remarkably, the optimal tuning of the guidance law in our simulations coincides closely with what has been observed empirically in peregrines. High-altitude stoops are shown to be beneficial because their high airspeed enables production of higher aerodynamic forces for maneuvering, and facilitates higher roll agility as the wings are tucked, each of which is essential to catching maneuvering prey at realistic response delays.

  9. 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

  10. Great Lakes prey fish populations: A cross-basin overview of status and trends in 2008

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorman, Owen T.; Bunnell, David B.

    2009-01-01

    Assessments of prey fishes in the Great Lakes have been conducted annually since the 1970s by the Great Lakes Science Center, sometimes assisted by partner agencies. Prey fish assessments differ among lakes in the proportion of a lake covered, seasonal timing, bottom trawl gear used, sampling design, and the manner in which the trawl is towed (across or along bottom contours). Because each assessment is unique in one or more important aspects, a direct comparison of prey fish catches among lakes is problematic. All of the assessments, however, produce indices of abundance or biomass that can be standardized to facilitate comparisons of trends among lakes and to illustrate present status of the populations. We present indices of abundance for important prey fishes in the Great Lakes standardized to the highest value for a time series within each lake: cisco (Coregonus artedi), bloater (C. hoyi), rainbow smelt (Osmerus mordax), and alewife (Alosa pseudoharengus). We also provide indices for round goby (Neogobius melanostomus), an invasive fish presently spreading throughout the basin. Our intent is to provide a short, informal report emphasizing data presentation rather than synthesis; for this reason we intentionally avoid use of tables and cited references.For each lake, standardized relative indices for annual biomass and density estimates of important prey fishes were calculated as the fraction relative to the largest value observed in the times series. To determine whether basin-wide trends were apparent for each species, we first ranked standardized index values within each lake. When comparing ranked index values from three or more lakes, we calculated the Kendall coefficient of concordance (W), which can range from 0 (complete discordance or disagreement among trends) to 1 (complete concordance or agreement among trends). The P-value for W provides the probability of agreement across the lakes. When comparing ranked index values from two lakes, we calculated

  11. Richness, diversity, and similarity of arthropod prey consumed by a community of Hawaiian forest birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banko, Paul C.; Peck, Robert W.; Brinck, Kevin W.; Leonard, David L.

    2015-01-01

    We evaluated the diet richness, diversity, and similarity of a community of seven endemic and two introduced passerine birds by analyzing the composition of arthropod prey in fecal samples collected during 1994–1998 at Hakalau Forest National Wildlife Refuge, Hawai‘i Island. Most prey fragments were identified to order, but we also distinguished among morpho-species of Lepidoptera based on the shape of larval (caterpillar) mandibles for higher resolution of this important prey type. Diets were compared among feeding specialists, generalists, and “intermediate” species and among introduced and three endangered Hawaiian honeycreeper (Fringillidae) species. Lepidoptera (moths), especially the larval (caterpillar) stage, comprised the greatest proportion of prey in samples of all bird species except for the introduced Japanese white-eye (Zosterops japonicus; JAWE). Araneae (spiders) was the most abundant order in JAWE samples and the second most abundant order for most other species. The two specialist honeycreepers ranked lowest in the richness and diversity of arthropod orders, but only the ‘akiapōlā‘au (Hemignathus munroi, AKIP) was significantly lower than the three generalist or intermediate honeycreeper species. The diversity of arthropod orders was significantly lower for the three endangered honeycreeper species compared to the two introduced species. No significant differences were observed among the five honeycreepers with respect to the arthropod orders they consumed. The use of arthropod orders taken by endangered honeycreepers and introduced species was significantly different in all paired comparisons except for JAWE and ‘ākepa (Loxops coccineus; AKEP). In terms of richness and diversity of caterpillar morpho-species in the diet, only the specialist, AKEP, was significantly lower than all three generalist and intermediate species. Both AKEP and AKIP consumed a significantly different diet of caterpillar morpho-species compared to at least

  12. The global stability of a delayed predator-prey system with two stage-structure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang Fengyan; Pang Guoping

    2009-01-01

    Based on the classical delayed stage-structured model and Lotka-Volterra predator-prey model, we introduce and study a delayed predator-prey system, where prey and predator have two stages, an immature stage and a mature stage. The time delays are the time lengths between the immature's birth and maturity of prey and predator species. Results on global asymptotic stability of nonnegative equilibria of the delay system are given, which generalize and suggest that good continuity exists between the predator-prey system and its corresponding stage-structured system.

  13. Sabretoothed carnivores and the killing of large prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ki Andersson

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

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

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    Luiz Augusto Macedo Mestre

    2010-12-01

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

  15. Innate and Learned Prey-Searching Behavior in a Generalist Predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ardanuy, Agnès; Albajes, Ramon; Turlings, Ted C J

    2016-06-01

    Early colonization by Zyginidia scutellaris leafhoppers might be a key factor in the attraction and settling of generalist predators, such as Orius spp., in maize fields. In this paper, we aimed to determine whether our observations of early season increases in field populations of Orius spp. reflect a specific attraction to Z. scutellaris-induced maize volatiles, and how the responses of Orius predators to herbivore-induced volatiles (HIPVs) might be affected by previous experiences on plants infested by herbivorous prey. Therefore, we examined the innate and learned preferences of Orius majusculus toward volatiles from maize plants attacked by three potential herbivores with different feeding strategies: the leafhopper Z. scutellaris (mesophyll feeder), the lepidopteran Spodoptera littoralis (chewer), and another leafhopper Dalbulus maidis (phloem feeder). In addition, we examined the volatile profiles emitted by maize plants infested by the three herbivores. Our results show that predators exhibit a strong innate attraction to volatiles from maize plants infested with Z. scutellaris or S. littoralis. Previous predation experience in the presence of HIPVs influences the predator's odor preferences. The innate preference for plants with cell or tissue damage may be explained by these plants releasing far more volatiles than plants infested by the phloem-sucking D. maidis. However, a predation experience on D. maidis-infested plants increased the preference for D. maidis-induced maize volatiles. After O. majusculus experienced L3-L4 larvae (too large to serve as prey) on S. littoralis-infested plants, they showed reduced attraction toward these plants and an increased attraction toward D. maidis-infested plants. When offered young larvae of S. littoralis, which are more suitable prey, preference toward HIPVs was similar to that of naive individuals. The HIPVs from plants infested by herbivores with distinctly different feeding strategies showed distinguishable

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Salvador Lyngdoh

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyngdoh, Salvador; Shrotriya, Shivam; Goyal, Surendra P; Clements, Hayley; Hayward, Matthew W; Habib, Bilal

    2014-01-01

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

  18. Effects of turbidity and prey density on the foraging success of age 0 year yellow perch Perca flavescens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wellington, C G; Mayer, C M; Bossenbroek, J M; Stroh, N A

    2010-05-01

    Laboratory experiments were conducted to determine how larval and juvenile yellow perch Perca flavescens respond to changes in prey density when exposed to different levels and types of turbidity (phytoplanktonic or sedimentary). Across prey densities, consumption by P. flavescens tended to be less in phytoplanktonic turbidity compared with sedimentary turbidity. For larvae, this effect was dependent on turbidity level (consumption differed between turbidity types only at high turbidity), while for juveniles the difference with turbidity type was equal across turbidity levels. These results suggest that phytoplankton blooms are detrimental to the ability of late season age 0 year P. flavescens to forage and support the need to control factors leading to excessive phytoplankton growth in lakes.

  19. Morphology of seahorse head hydrodynamically aids in capture of evasive prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gemmell, Brad J; Sheng, Jian; Buskey, Edward J

    2013-01-01

    Syngnathid fish (seahorses, pipefish and sea dragons) are slow swimmers yet capture evasive prey (copepods) using a technique known as the 'pivot' feeding, which involves rapid movement to overcome prey escape capabilities. However, this feeding mode functions only at short range and requires approaching very closely to hydrodynamically sensitive prey without triggering an escape. Here we investigate the role of head morphology on prey capture using holographic and particle image velocimetry (PIV). We show that head morphology functions to create a reduced fluid deformation zone, minimizing hydrodynamic disturbance where feeding strikes occur (above the end of the snout), and permits syngnathid fish to approach highly sensitive copepod prey (Acartia tonsa) undetected. The results explain how these animals can successfully employ short range 'pivot' feeding effectively on evasive prey. The need to approach prey with stealth may have selected for a head shape that produces lower deformation rates than other fish.

  20. PATTERNS OF PREY BIOMASS CONSUMPTION BY SMALL ODONTOCETES IN THE NORTHEASTERN COAST OF VENEZUELA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lenin E. Oviedo Correa

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Trophic relationships are conditioned by population dynamics of interacting species in the community (species present, food web connections among them, and the strength of interactions, and on the consequences of these species interactions depend various ecosystem processes such as productivity and nutrient flux. Odontocetes target a wide range of prey items and are adapted to feeding at different depths. The aim of this report is to describe the patterns of prey consumption by small odontocetes, incorporating natural predatory patterns into a potential management scheme of strategic food sources, for both human and marine predators. Using the geo-statistical analysis tool of ArcGIS 9.2, maps illustrating the intensity and location of prey consumption were made for species with a sighting index (SPUE > 0.15. The biomass consumption emphasized the differences in habitat use by species. The trends in distribution of prey biomass removal by odontocetes particularly suggest a stratification of prey consumption primarily in shelf waters, with a prey biomass that is comprised basically by demersal fish and small pelagics (including Sardinella aurita, and into transition-oceanic depths where most of the predatory pattern would potentially rely on pelagic - mesopelagic squid and myctophids. Overall the spatial tendencies in regionalization presented in this contribution will serve as a base-line to assess ecosystem health and evaluate management scenarios.   Las relaciones tróficas son reguladas por la dinámica poblacional de las especies que interactúan dentro de la comunidad (especies presentes, conexiones interespecíficas, y nivel de interacción y de las consecuencias de esas interacciones para procesos del ecosistema como la productividad y el flujo de nutrientes. El objetivo de este reporte es evaluar el patrón de consumo de biomasa por odontocetos de menor tamaño en la costa Nororiental de Venezuela, incorporando patrones de depredaci

  1. Small prey species' behaviour and welfare: implications for veterinary professionals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McBride, E Anne

    2017-08-01

    People have obligations to ensure the welfare of animals under their care. Offences under the UK Animal Welfare Act are acts, or failures of action, causing unnecessary suffering. Veterinary professionals need to be able to provide current, scientifically based prophylactic advice, and respect the limits of their expertise. The ethical concept of a life worth living and the Five Freedoms are core to welfare. Behaviour is a central component, both influencing and influenced by physical health. Owners frequently misunderstand the behaviour of small prey mammals and how to meet their needs. This review provides insight into the physical-social (external) and the cognitive-emotional (internal) environments of small prey mammals, contextualised within an evolutionary perspective. This is extrapolated to captivity and practical suggestions given for meeting behavioural freedoms and enhancing client understanding and enjoyment of their animals, thereby improving welfare. © 2017 British Small Animal Veterinary Association.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dobramysl, U; Täuber, U C

    2013-01-01

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

  3. Bifurcation Behavior Analysis in a Predator-Prey Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nan Wang

    2016-01-01

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

  4. Feeding patterns of migratory and non-migratory fourth instar larvae of two coexisting Chaoborus species in an acidic and metal contaminated lake: Importance of prey ingestion rate in predicting metal bioaccumulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Croteau, M.-N.; Hare, L.; Marcoux, P.

    2003-01-01

    We studied diel variations in the feeding habits and migratory behaviors of two coexisting Chaoborus species in an acidic and metal contaminated lake (Lake Turcotte, QC, Canada). We found that although the zooplankton community was dominated by rotifers, both Chaoborus species fed mostly on chironomids and crustaceans despite the relatively low abundance of these prey types in the lake plankton. Chaoborus americanus larvae fed on those of Chaoborus punctipennis, but not vice versa. The non-migratory species (C. americanus) fed throughout the day and night whereas the migratory species (C. punctipennis) fed only at night while in the water column. The larger-bodied C. americanus consumed more prey and had a more diverse diet than did the smaller-bodied C. punctipennis. Differences in feeding habits between the Chaoborus species inhabiting Lake Turcotte (prey biomass, prey types) likely explain in part their ability to coexist. Attempts to predict Cd in the Chaoborus species using our measurements of Cd in their prey and their prey ingestion rates met with mixed success; although we correctly predicted higher Cd concentrations for C. americanus larvae than for C. punctipennis larvae, we under-predicted absolute Cd concentrations. We suggest that studies such as ours that are based on analyses of gut contents of larvae collected at intervals of 4h or longer likely underestimate prey ingestion rates.

  5. 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...

  6. The Neuronal Control of Flying Prey Interception in Dragonflies

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-08-19

    Gonzalez-Bellido’s fluorescent dye ( Lucifer -yellow) injections illuminated for the first time the anatomy of the output regions of the TSDNs...out in Cape Cod (MA) to test the effect of bead size(C), and in the Olberg Laboratory (Union College, NY) to test the effect of bead speed by...AFRL-OSR-VA-TR-2014-0193 THE NEURONAL CONTROL OF FLYING PREY INTERCEPTION IN DRAGONFLIES Robert Olberg TRUSTEES OF UNION COLLEGE IN THE TOWN OF

  7. Form of an evolutionary tradeoff affects eco-evolutionary dynamics in a predator-prey system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kasada, Minoru; Yamamichi, Masato; Yoshida, Takehito

    2014-11-11

    Evolution on a time scale similar to ecological dynamics has been increasingly recognized for the last three decades. Selection mediated by ecological interactions can change heritable phenotypic variation (i.e., evolution), and evolution of traits, in turn, can affect ecological interactions. Hence, ecological and evolutionary dynamics can be tightly linked and important to predict future dynamics, but our understanding of eco-evolutionary dynamics is still in its infancy and there is a significant gap between theoretical predictions and empirical tests. Empirical studies have demonstrated that the presence of genetic variation can dramatically change ecological dynamics, whereas theoretical studies predict that eco-evolutionary dynamics depend on the details of the genetic variation, such as the form of a tradeoff among genotypes, which can be more important than the presence or absence of the genetic variation. Using a predator-prey (rotifer-algal) experimental system in laboratory microcosms, we studied how different forms of a tradeoff between prey defense and growth affect eco-evolutionary dynamics. Our experimental results show for the first time to our knowledge that different forms of the tradeoff produce remarkably divergent eco-evolutionary dynamics, including near fixation, near extinction, and coexistence of algal genotypes, with quantitatively different population dynamics. A mathematical model, parameterized from completely independent experiments, explains the observed dynamics. The results suggest that knowing the details of heritable trait variation and covariation within a population is essential for understanding how evolution and ecology will interact and what form of eco-evolutionary dynamics will result.

  8. Prey preference of snow leopard (Panthera uncia in South Gobi, Mongolia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wasim Shehzad

    Full Text Available Accurate information about the diet of large carnivores that are elusive and inhabit inaccessible terrain, is required to properly design conservation strategies. Predation on livestock and retaliatory killing of predators have become serious issues throughout the range of the snow leopard. Several feeding ecology studies of snow leopards have been conducted using classical approaches. These techniques have inherent limitations in their ability to properly identify both snow leopard feces and prey taxa. To examine the frequency of livestock prey and nearly-threatened argali in the diet of the snow leopard, we employed the recently developed DNA-based diet approach to study a snow leopard population located in the Tost Mountains, South Gobi, Mongolia. After DNA was extracted from the feces, a region of ∼100 bp long from mitochondrial 12S rRNA gene was amplified, making use of universal primers for vertebrates and a blocking oligonucleotide specific to snow leopard DNA. The amplicons were then sequenced using a next-generation sequencing platform. We observed a total of five different prey items from 81 fecal samples. Siberian ibex predominated the diet (in 70.4% of the feces, followed by domestic goat (17.3% and argali sheep (8.6%. The major part of the diet was comprised of large ungulates (in 98.8% of the feces including wild ungulates (79% and domestic livestock (19.7%. The findings of the present study will help to understand the feeding ecology of the snow leopard, as well as to address the conservation and management issues pertaining to this wild cat.

  9. Antimicrobial resistance determinants in Staphylococcus spp. recovered from birds of prey in Portugal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sousa, Margarida; Silva, Nuno; Igrejas, Gilberto; Silva, Filipe; Sargo, Roberto; Alegria, Nuno; Benito, Daniel; Gómez, Paula; Lozano, Carmen; Gómez-Sanz, Elena; Torres, Carmen; Caniça, Manuela; Poeta, Patrícia

    2014-07-16

    Antibiotic resistance among wild animals represent an emerging public health concern. The objective of this study was to analyze the staphylococcal nasal microbiota in birds of prey and their content in antimicrobial resistance determinants. Nasal samples from 16 birds of prey were collected, swabs were dipped and incubated into BHI broth [6.5% NaCl] and later seeded on manitol salt agar and oxacillin-resistance screening agar base media. Staphylococcal colonies were isolated from both media and were identified by biochemical and molecular methods. Susceptibility testing to 18 antimicrobial agents was performed by disk-diffusion method. Six of the 16 tested animals carried staphylococci (37.5%) and 7 isolates of the following species were recovered: Staphylococcus aureus, Staphylococcus epidermidis, Staphylococcus saprophyticus, Staphylococcus sciuri rodentium, Staphylococcus cohnii urealitycum, and Staphylococcus gallinarum. The S. aureus isolate was penicillin-resistant (with blaZ gene) but methicillin-susceptible and was ascribed to spa-type t012, sequence-type ST30 and agr-type III. The S. epidermidis isolate carried blaZ, mecA, mrs(A/B), mphC, tet(K), drfA, and fusC genes, ica operon, and was typed as ST35. The genes ant6'-Ia, tet(K), tet(L), dfrG, cat221, cat194, and cat223 were detected in S. saprophyticus or S. gallinarum isolates. Birds of prey seem to be a natural reservoir of S. aureus and coagulase-negative staphylococci resistant to multiple antibiotics. Due to the convergence between habitats, the contact between wildlife, other animals and humans is now more common and this involves an increased possibility of interchange of these microorganisms in the different ecosystems. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Ongoing removals of invasive lionfish in Honduras and their effect on native Caribbean prey fishes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peiffer, Friederike; Bejarano, Sonia; Palavicini de Witte, Giacomo; Wild, Christian

    2017-01-01

    The invasion of Indo-Pacific lionfish is one of the most pressing concerns in the context of coral reef conservation throughout the Caribbean. Invasive lionfish threaten Caribbean fish communities by feeding on a wide range of native prey species, some of which have high ecological and economic value. In Roatan (Honduras) a local non-governmental organisation (i.e. Roatan Marine Park) trains residents and tourists in the use of spears to remove invasive lionfish. Here, we assess the effectiveness of local removal efforts in reducing lionfish populations. We ask whether reefs subject to relatively frequent removals support more diverse and abundant native fish assemblages compared to sites were no removals take place. Lionfish biomass, as well as density and diversity of native prey species were quantified on reefs subject to regular and no removal efforts. Reefs subject to regular lionfish removals (two to three removals month -1 ) with a mean catch per unit effort of 2.76 ± 1.72 lionfish fisher -1 h -1 had 95% lower lionfish biomass compared to non-removal sites. Sites subject to lionfish removals supported 30% higher densities of native prey-sized fishes compared to sites subject to no removal efforts. We found no evidence that species richness and diversity of native fish communities differ between removal and non-removal sites. We conclude that opportunistic voluntary removals are an effective management intervention to reduce lionfish populations locally and might alleviate negative impacts of lionfish predation. We recommend that local management and the diving industry cooperate to cost-effectively extend the spatial scale at which removal regimes are currently sustained.

  11. Ongoing removals of invasive lionfish in Honduras and their effect on native Caribbean prey fishes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Friederike Peiffer

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The invasion of Indo-Pacific lionfish is one of the most pressing concerns in the context of coral reef conservation throughout the Caribbean. Invasive lionfish threaten Caribbean fish communities by feeding on a wide range of native prey species, some of which have high ecological and economic value. In Roatan (Honduras a local non-governmental organisation (i.e. Roatan Marine Park trains residents and tourists in the use of spears to remove invasive lionfish. Here, we assess the effectiveness of local removal efforts in reducing lionfish populations. We ask whether reefs subject to relatively frequent removals support more diverse and abundant native fish assemblages compared to sites were no removals take place. Lionfish biomass, as well as density and diversity of native prey species were quantified on reefs subject to regular and no removal efforts. Reefs subject to regular lionfish removals (two to three removals month−1 with a mean catch per unit effort of 2.76 ± 1.72 lionfish fisher−1 h−1 had 95% lower lionfish biomass compared to non-removal sites. Sites subject to lionfish removals supported 30% higher densities of native prey-sized fishes compared to sites subject to no removal efforts. We found no evidence that species richness and diversity of native fish communities differ between removal and non-removal sites. We conclude that opportunistic voluntary removals are an effective management intervention to reduce lionfish populations locally and might alleviate negative impacts of lionfish predation. We recommend that local management and the diving industry cooperate to cost-effectively extend the spatial scale at which removal regimes are currently sustained.

  12. Prey selection of Tawny owls (Strix aluco) on Yellow necked mouse and Bank Vole

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Forsom, H. M.; Sunde, P.; Overskaug, K.

    As predators owls may have a strong impact on mortality of their favourite prey, and may therefore act as important selective agents on their prey species. Little is known, however, about whether owls choose prey randomly or if some prey items suffer a higher risk of predation due to certain life...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-01-01

    The possibility that predators choose prey selectively based on age or condition has been suggested but rarely tested. We examined whether mountain lions (Puma concolor) selectively prey upon mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) infected with chronic wasting disease, a prion disease. We located kill sites of mountain lions in the northern Front Range of Colorado, USA, and compared disease prevalence among lion-killed adult (≥2 years old) deer with prevalence among sympatric deer taken by hunters in the vicinity of kill sites. Hunter-killed female deer were less likely to be infected than males (odds ratios (OR) = 0.2, 95% confidence intervals (CI) = 0.1–0.6; p = 0.015). However, both female (OR = 8.5, 95% CI = 2.3–30.9) and male deer (OR = 3.2, 95% CI = 1–10) killed by a mountain lion were more likely to be infected than same-sex deer killed in the vicinity by a hunter (p < 0.001), suggesting that mountain lions in this area actively selected prion-infected individuals when targeting adult mule deer as prey items. PMID:19864271

  14. Brominated flame retardants in birds of prey from Flanders, Belgium

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Voorspoels, S.; Covaci, A.; Schepens, P. [Antwerp Univ., Wilrijk (Belgium). Toxicological Centre

    2004-09-15

    Since their introduction on the market, environmental levels of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) are continuously increasing. This is caused by spillage and emission during production and use, but also by improper disposal at the end-of-life of the products in which they are used. These chemicals are highly persistent and lipophilic which results in bioaccumulation in fatty tissues of biota and biomagnification throughout the food chain. Because PBDEs have a high toxicological potential, this biomagnification can have serious health consequences for top-predators, such as birds of prey. Data about PBDE concentrations in terrestrial biota, especially in birds of prey, is scarce. A rapid increase of PBDE concentrations has been seen in pooled guillemot (Uria algae) eggs from the Baltic proper7 during the late 1970's and early 1980's, followed by a decrease during the 1990's8. In herring gull eggs from the Great Lakes, the PBDE concentrations increased exponentially from 1981 to 2000. Most of the studies look at concentrations in eggs, while less is known about tissue levels and distribution of these pollutants in birds of prey.

  15. Jewelled spiders manipulate colour-lure geometry to deceive prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Thomas E

    2017-03-01

    Selection is expected to favour the evolution of efficacy in visual communication. This extends to deceptive systems, and predicts functional links between the structure of visual signals and their behavioural presentation. Work to date has primarily focused on colour, however, thereby understating the multicomponent nature of visual signals. Here I examined the relationship between signal structure, presentation behaviour, and efficacy in the context of colour-based prey luring. I used the polymorphic orb-web spider Gasteracantha fornicata , whose yellow- or white-and-black striped dorsal colours have been broadly implicated in prey attraction. In a manipulative assay, I found that spiders actively control the orientation of their conspicuous banded signals in the web, with a distinct preference for near-diagonal bearings. Further field-based study identified a predictive relationship between pattern orientation and prey interception rates, with a local maximum at the spiders' preferred orientation. There were no morph-specific effects on capture success, either singularly or via an interaction with pattern orientation. These results reveal a dynamic element in a traditionally 'static' signalling context, and imply differential functions for chromatic and geometric signal components across visual contexts. More broadly, they underscore how multicomponent signal designs and display behaviours may coevolve to enhance efficacy in visual deception. © 2017 The Author(s).

  16. Morphological correlates of prey consumed by Podarcis melisellensis (Braun, 1877 and P. siculus (Rafinesque, 1810 (Sauria, Lacertidae from two mainland regions in the eastern Adriatic area

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stamenković S.Ž.

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The correlation between trophic utilization and morphology was studied for two lizard species (Podarcis melisellensis and P. siculus from two mainland localities in the eastern Adriatic area; this is the first report of trophic and morphometric data for P. melisellensis from mainland populations. Variance partitioning showed that most of the variation in morphological traits for the analyzed lizards was the result of differences between species, and to a lesser extent between sexes. Locality did not have a strong effect on the variation of morphological traits. Prey weight is the only characteristic of prey that generally exhibits correlations with morphological characteristics rather than prey size. The pattern of correlations is generally weaker for P. melisellensis than for P. siculus. Optimal foraging theory predictions were generally confirmed: P. siculus is more constrained by trophic resource availability, with a premium on larger and heavier prey consumed in the less productive locality (SM, which can be relaxed in more productive regions (KL. P. melisellensis shows such constraints only for males in the less productive region (SM. Females of both species consume heavier prey. [Projekat Ministarstva nauke Republike Srbije, br. III43001 i br. 173011

  17. Maximal feeding with active prey-switching: A kill-the-winner functional response and its effect on global diversity and biogeography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vallina, S. M.; Ward, B. A.; Dutkiewicz, S.; Follows, M. J.

    2014-01-01

    Predators' switching towards the most abundant prey is a mechanism that stabilizes population dynamics and helps overcome competitive exclusion of species in food webs. Current formulations of active prey-switching, however, display non-maximal feeding in which the predators' total ingestion decays exponentially with the number prey species (i.e. the diet breadth) even though the total prey biomass stays constant. We analyse three previously published multi-species functional responses which have either active switching or maximal feeding, but not both. We identify the cause of this apparent incompatibility and describe a kill-the-winner formulation that combines active switching with maximal feeding. Active switching is shown to be a community response in which some predators become prey-selective and the formulations with maximal or non-maximal feeding are implicitly assuming different food web configurations. Global simulations using a marine ecosystem model with 64 phytoplankton species belonging to 4 major functional groups show that the species richness and biogeography of phytoplankton are very sensitive to the choice of the functional response for grazing. The phytoplankton biogeography reflects the balance between the competitive abilities for nutrient uptake and the degree of apparent competition which occurs indirectly between species that share a common predator species. The phytoplankton diversity significantly increases when active switching is combined with maximal feeding through predator-mediated coexistence.

  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. Stochastic prey arrivals and crab spider giving-up times: simulations of spider performance using two simple "rules of thumb".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kareiva, Peter; Morse, Douglass H; Eccleston, Jill

    1989-03-01

    We compared the patch-choice performances of an ambush predator, the crab spider Misumena vatia (Thomisidae) hunting on common milkweed Asclepias syriaca (Asclepiadaceae) umbles, with two stochastic rule-of-thumb simulation models: one that employed a threshold giving-up time and one that assumed a fixed probability of moving. Adult female Misumena were placed on milkweed plants with three umbels, each with markedly different numbers of flower-seeking prey. Using a variety of visitation regimes derived from observed visitation patterns of insect prey, we found that decreases in among-umbel variance in visitation rates or increases in overall mean visitation rates reduced the "clarity of the optimum" (the difference in the yield obtained as foraging behavior changes), both locally and globally. Yield profiles from both models were extremely flat or jagged over a wide range of prey visitation regimes; thus, differences between optimal and "next-best" strategies differed only modestly over large parts of the "foraging landscape". Although optimal yields from fixed probability simulations were one-third to one-half those obtained from threshold simulations, spiders appear to depart umbels in accordance with the fixed probability rule.

  20. Red trap colour of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia does not serve a prey attraction or camouflage function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foot, G; Rice, S P; Millett, J

    2014-01-01

    The traps of many carnivorous plants are red in colour. This has been widely hypothesized to serve a prey attraction function; colour has also been hypothesized to function as camouflage, preventing prey avoidance. We tested these two hypotheses in situ for the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia. We conducted three separate studies: (i) prey attraction to artificial traps to isolate the influence of colour; (ii) prey attraction to artificial traps on artificial backgrounds to control the degree of contrast and (iii) observation of prey capture by D. rotundifolia to determine the effects of colour on prey capture. Prey were not attracted to green traps and were deterred from red traps. There was no evidence that camouflaged traps caught more prey. For D. rotundifolia, there was a relationship between trap colour and prey capture. However, trap colour may be confounded with other leaf traits. Thus, we conclude that for D. rotundifolia, red trap colour does not serve a prey attraction or camouflage function.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grant Harris

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

  2. Weather and Prey Predict Mammals’ Visitation to Water

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, Grant; Sanderson, James G.; Erz, Jon; Lehnen, Sarah E.; Butler, Matthew J.

    2015-01-01

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

  3. Bottom trawl assessment of Lake Ontario prey fishes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weidel, Brian C.; Connerton, Michael J.; Holden, Jeremy

    2018-01-01

    Managing Lake Ontario fisheries in an ecosystem-context requires prey fish community and population data. Since 1978, multiple annual bottom trawl surveys have quantified prey fish dynamics to inform management relative to published Fish Community Objectives. In 2017, two whole-lake surveys collected 341 bottom trawls (spring: 204, fall: 137), at depths from 8-225m, and captured 751,350 fish from 29 species. Alewife were 90% of the total fish catch while Deepwater Sculpin, Round Goby, and Rainbow Smelt comprised the majority of the remaining total catch (3.8, 3.1, and 1.1% respectively). The adult Alewife abundance index for US waters increased in 2017 relative to 2016, however the index for Canadian waters declined. Adult Alewife condition, assessed by the predicted weight of a 165 mm fish (6.5 inches), declined in 2017 from record high values observed in spring 2016. Spring 2017 Alewife condition was slightly less than the 10-year average, but the fall value was well below the 10-year average, likely due to increased Age-1 Alewife abundance. The Age-1 Alewife abundance index was the highest observed in 40 years, and 8-times higher than the previous year. The Age-1 index estimates Alewife reproductive success the preceding year. The warm summer and winter of 2016 likely contributed to the large year class. In contrast the relatively cool 2017 spring and cold winter may result in a lower than average 2017 year class. Abundance indices for Rainbow Smelt, Cisco, and Emerald Shiner either declined or remained at low levels in 2017. Pelagic prey fish diversity continues to be low since a single species, Alewife, dominates the catch. Deepwater Sculpin were the most abundant benthic prey fish in 2017 because Round Goby abundance declined sharply from 2016. Slimy Sculpin density continued to decline and the 2017 biomass index for US waters was the lowest ever observed. Prior to Round Goby proliferation, juvenile Slimy Sculpin comprised ~10% of the Slimy Sculpin catch, but

  4. Prey diversity for Three Species Herons in Pulau Dua Nature Reserve Serang Distrik, Banten Province

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    DEWI ELFIDASARI

    2006-10-01

    Full Text Available The diversity of prey consumed by three species herons (Casmerodius albus, Egretta garzetta and Bubulcus ibis was studied in Pulau Dua Nature Reserve Serang, Banten Province using video tapes by following a focal individual for five minutes. In the laboratory the film was analysed every minutes to select complete sequences of feeding behavior in foraging site. There were differences on diversity and size of prey that consumed by three species herons among the different feeding locations. Casmerodius albus which was feeding on mudflat and fisheries consumed Chanos chanos (15.6%, Oreochromis sp (9.4% and Periophtalmus sp. (7.3%, and 36.5% couldn’t be identified. Egretta garzetta was feeding on mudflat, fisheries and rice-field, consumed Periophtalmus sp (15.4%, Mugil dussumeieri (7.9%, Chanos chanos (4.7%, Oreochromis sp (0.5%, including small frog and crustacean (0.5%. Bubulcus ibis was feeding on rice-field and grassland, consumed many variety of insects (92 % and many variety of snail (1.9% in their diet. The insects that B. ibis consumed including grasshopper (26.8%, caterpillar (0.9% and other invertebrates (worm, crustacean that could not be identified (64.3%.

  5. Levels and distribution of polybrominated diphenyl ethers in various tissues of birds of prey

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Voorspoels, Stefan; Covaci, Adrian; Lepom, Peter; Jaspers, Veerle L.B.; Schepens, Paul

    2006-01-01

    In the present study, concentrations and tissue distribution of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs; IUPAC nos. 28, 47, 99, 100, 153, 154, 183, and 209) were examined in brain, adipose tissue, liver, muscle, and serum of birds of prey. Median ΣPBDE levels (BDE 28-183) in the tissues of sparrowhawks ranged from 360 to 1900 ng/g lipid weight (lw), which was in general one order of magnitude higher than in the tissues of common buzzards (26-130 ng/g lw). There were no differences in PBDE congener patterns between the various tissues within individuals of a certain species. Inter-species differences in PBDE patterns and in particular the percentage of BDE 99, 100 and 153 were, however, pronounced between sparrowhawk and common buzzard. BDE 209 was detected in nearly all serum and in some liver samples, but not in any other tissues. This observation suggests that exposure to BDE 209 is low or that this congener is poorly accumulated. Passive (lipid content related) diffusion could not completely describe the PBDE tissue distribution, e.g. the lowest PBDE-load was measured in brain, a fairly lipid rich tissue. - Distribution of polybrominated diphenyl ethers in birds of prey is tissue dependent

  6. Rearing environment influences boldness and prey acquisition behavior, and brain and lens development of bull trout

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brignon, William R.; Pike, Martin M.; Ebbesson, Lars O.E.; Schaller, Howard A.; Peterson, James T.; Schreck, Carl B.

    2018-01-01

    Animals reared in barren captive environments exhibit different developmental trajectories and behaviors than wild counterparts. Hence, the captive phenotypes may influence the success of reintroduction and recovery programs for threatened and endangered species. We collected wild bull trout embryos from the Metolius River Basin, Oregon and reared them in differing environments to better understand how captivity affects the bull trout Salvelinus confluentusphenotype. We compared the boldness and prey acquisition behaviors and development of the brain and eye lens of bull trout reared in conventional barren and more structurally complex captive environments with that of wild fish. Wild fish and captive reared fish from complex habitats exhibited a greater level of boldness and prey acquisition ability, than fish reared in conventional captive environments. In addition, the eye lens of conventionally reared bull trout was larger than complex reared captive fish or same age wild fish. Interestingly, we detected wild fish had a smaller relative cerebellum than either captive reared treatment. Our results suggest that rearing fish in more complex captive environments can create a more wild-like phenotype than conventional rearing practices. A better understanding of the effects of captivity on the development and behavior of bull trout can inform rearing and reintroduction programs though prediction of the performance of released individuals.

  7. The Dynamics of an Impulsive Predator-Prey System with Stage Structure and Holling Type III Functional Response

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhixiang Ju

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Based on the biological resource management of natural resources, a stage-structured predator-prey model with Holling type III functional response, birth pulse, and impulsive harvesting at different moments is proposed in this paper. By applying comparison theorem and some analysis techniques, the global attractivity of predator-extinction periodic solution and the permanence of this system are studied. At last, examples and numerical simulations are given to verify the validity of the main results.

  8. Turbulence-enhanced prey encounter rates in larval fish : Effects of spatial scale, larval behaviour and size

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kiørboe, Thomas; MacKenzie, Brian

    1995-01-01

    Turbulent water motion has several effects on the feeding ecology of larval fish and other planktivorous predators. In this paper, we consider the appropriate spatial scales for estimating relative velocities between larval fish predators and their prey, and the effect that different choices of s...... in the range in which turbulent intensity has an overall positive effect on larval fish ingestion rate probability. However, experimental data to test the model predictions are lacking. We suggest that the model inputs require further empirical study....

  9. Always chew your food: freshwater stingrays use mastication to process tough insect prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolmann, Matthew A; Welch, Kenneth C; Summers, Adam P; Lovejoy, Nathan R

    2016-09-14

    Chewing, characterized by shearing jaw motions and high-crowned molar teeth, is considered an evolutionary innovation that spurred dietary diversification and evolutionary radiation of mammals. Complex prey-processing behaviours have been thought to be lacking in fishes and other vertebrates, despite the fact that many of these animals feed on tough prey, like insects or even grasses. We investigated prey capture and processing in the insect-feeding freshwater stingray Potamotrygon motoro using high-speed videography. We find that Potamotrygon motoro uses asymmetrical motion of the jaws, effectively chewing, to dismantle insect prey. However, CT scanning suggests that this species has simple teeth. These findings suggest that in contrast to mammalian chewing, asymmetrical jaw action is sufficient for mastication in other vertebrates. We also determined that prey capture in these rays occurs through rapid uplift of the pectoral fins, sucking prey beneath the ray's body, thereby dissociating the jaws from a prey capture role. We suggest that the decoupling of prey capture and processing facilitated the evolution of a highly kinetic feeding apparatus in batoid fishes, giving these animals an ability to consume a wide variety of prey, including molluscs, fishes, aquatic insect larvae and crustaceans. We propose Potamotrygon as a model system for understanding evolutionary convergence of prey processing and chewing in vertebrates. © 2016 The Author(s).

  10. Benefits of Group Foraging Depend on Prey Type in a Small Marine Predator, the Little Penguin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutton, Grace J; Hoskins, Andrew J; Arnould, John P Y

    2015-01-01

    Group foraging provides predators with advantages in over-powering prey larger than themselves or in aggregating small prey for efficient exploitation. For group-living predatory species, cooperative hunting strategies provide inclusive fitness benefits. However, for colonial-breeding predators, the benefit pay-offs of group foraging are less clear due to the potential for intra-specific competition. We used animal-borne cameras to determine the prey types, hunting strategies, and success of little penguins (Eudyptula minor), a small, colonial breeding air-breathing marine predator that has recently been shown to display extensive at-sea foraging associations with conspecifics. Regardless of prey type, little penguins had a higher probability of associating with conspecifics when hunting prey that were aggregated than when prey were solitary. In addition, success was greater when individuals hunted schooling rather than solitary prey. Surprisingly, however, success on schooling prey was similar or greater when individuals hunted on their own than when with conspecifics. These findings suggest individuals may be trading-off the energetic gains of solitary hunting for an increased probability of detecting prey within a spatially and temporally variable prey field by associating with conspecifics.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saneer Lamichhane

    2015-11-01

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

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2015-04-15

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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    2015-01-01

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

  14. Differential interactions between the nematocyst-bearing mixotrophic dinoflagellate Paragymnodinium shiwhaense and common heterotrophic protists and copepods: Killer or prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeong, Hae Jin; Kim, Jae Seong; Lee, Kyung Ha; Seong, Kyeong Ah; Yoo, Yeong Du; Kang, Nam Seon; Kim, Tae Hoon; Song, Jae Yoon; Kwon, Ji Eun

    2017-02-01

    To investigate interactions between the nematocyst-bearing mixotrophic dinoflagellate Paragymnodinium shiwhaense and different heterotrophic protist and copepod species, feeding by common heterotrophic dinoflagellates (Oxyrrhis marina and Gyrodinium dominans), naked ciliates (Strobilidium sp. approximately 35μm in cell length and Strombidinopsis sp. approximately 100μm in cell length), and calanoid copepods Acartia spp. (A. hongi and A. omorii) on P. shiwhaense was explored. In addition, the feeding activities of P. shiwhaense on these heterotrophic protists were investigated. Furthermore, the growth and ingestion rates of O. marina, G. dominans, Strobilidium sp., Strombidinopsis sp., and Acartia spp. as a function of P. shiwhaense concentration were measured. O. marina, G. dominans, and Strombidinopsis sp. were able to feed on P. shiwhaense, but Strobilidium sp. was not. However, the growth rates of O. marina, G. dominans, Strobilidium sp., and Strombidinopsis sp. feeding on P. shiwhaense were very low or negative at almost all concentrations of P. shiwhaense. P. shiwhaense frequently fed on O. marina and Strobilidium sp., but did not feed on Strombidinopsis sp. and G. dominans. G. dominans cells swelled and became dead when incubated with filtrate from the experimental bottles (G. dominans+P. shiwhaense) that had been incubated for one day. The ingestion rates of O. marina, G. dominans, and Strobilidium sp. on P. shiwhaense were almost zero at all P. shiwhaense concentrations, while those of Strombidinopsis sp. increased with prey concentration. The maximum ingestion rate of Strombidinopsis sp. on P. shiwhaense was 5.3ngC predator -1 d -1 (41 cells predator -1 d -1 ), which was much lower than ingestion rates reported in the literature for other mixotrophic dinoflagellate prey species. With increasing prey concentrations, the ingestion rates of Acartia spp. on P. shiwhaense increased up to 930ngCml -1 (7180cellsml -1 ) at the highest prey concentration. The

  15. Hopf bifurcations of a ratio-dependent predator–prey model involving two discrete maturation time delays

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Karaoglu, Esra; Merdan, Huseyin

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • A ratio-dependent predator–prey system involving two discrete maturation time delays is studied. • Hopf bifurcations are analyzed by choosing delay parameters as bifurcation parameters. • When a delay parameter passes through a critical value, Hopf bifurcations occur. • The direction of bifurcation, the period and the stability of periodic solution are also obtained. - Abstract: In this paper we give a detailed Hopf bifurcation analysis of a ratio-dependent predator–prey system involving two different discrete delays. By analyzing the characteristic equation associated with the model, its linear stability is investigated. Choosing delay terms as bifurcation parameters the existence of Hopf bifurcations is demonstrated. Stability of the bifurcating periodic solutions is determined by using the center manifold theorem and the normal form theory introduced by Hassard et al. Furthermore, some of the bifurcation properties including direction, stability and period are given. Finally, theoretical results are supported by some numerical simulations

  16. 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.

  17. Assimilation and partitioning of prey nitrogen within two anthozoans and their endosymbiotic zooxanthellae

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piniak, G.A.; Lipschultz, F.; McClelland, J.

    2003-01-01

    The movement of nitrogen from zooplankton prey into the temperate scleractinian coral Oculina arbuscula and the anemone Aiptasia pallida was measured using 15N-labeled brine shrimp. The efficiency with which prey nitrogen was incorporated into cnidarian tissues was species-specific. O. arbuscula with a full complement of zooxanthellae had an assimilation efficiency of nearly 100%, compared to only 46% for corals containing few zooxanthellae. In A. pallida, symbiont density had no effect, and nitrogen assimilation was 23 to 29%. In both species, the host retained the bulk of the ingested label. Complete digestion was rapid (zooxanthellae, where it was rapidly converted into macromolecules. Individual amino acids in A. pallida tissues were highly labeled with 15N within 4 h and showed no subsequent enrichment with time; however, zooxanthellae amino acids became increasingly enriched over 30 h. Differences in 15N enrichment among amino acids were consistent with known synthesis and transformation pathways, but it was not possible to discriminate between host feeding and de novo synthesis.

  18. On the dynamics of a generalized predator-prey system with Z-type control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lacitignola, Deborah; Diele, Fasma; Marangi, Carmela; Provenzale, Antonello

    2016-10-01

    We apply the Z-control approach to a generalized predator-prey system and consider the specific case of indirect control of the prey population. We derive the associated Z-controlled model and investigate its properties from the point of view of the dynamical systems theory. The key role of the design parameter λ for the successful application of the method is stressed and related to specific dynamical properties of the Z-controlled model. Critical values of the design parameter are also found, delimiting the λ-range for the effectiveness of the Z-method. Analytical results are then numerically validated by the means of two ecological models: the classical Lotka-Volterra model and a model related to a case study of the wolf-wild boar dynamics in the Alta Murgia National Park. Investigations on these models also highlight how the Z-control method acts in respect to different dynamical regimes of the uncontrolled model. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Toxicity tests based on predator-prey and competitive interactions between freshwater macroinvertebrates

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Taylor, E.J.; Blockwell, S.J.; Pascoe, D. [Univ. of Wales Coll. of Cardiff (United Kingdom)

    1994-12-31

    Simple multi-species toxicity tests based on the predation of Daphnia magna Straus by Hydra oligactis (Pallas) and competition between Gammarus pulex (L.) and Asellus aquaticus (L.) were used to determine the effects of three reference chemicals. Criteria examined included functional responses; time to first captures; handling times (predator/prey systems) and co-existence and growth. The tests which proved most practicable and sensitive (lowest observed effects 0.1, 21, and 80 {micro}g/l for lindane, copper and 3,4 dichloroaniline, respectively) were: (1) predator-prey tests: determining changes in the size-structure of predated D. magna populations and (2) competition tests: measuring the feeding rate of G. pulex competing with A. aquaticus, using a bioassay based on the time-response analysis of the consumption of Artemia salina eggs. The concentration of a chemical which affected particular response criteria was fond to depend on the test system employed. Results of the tests indicated that effects were often not dose-related and that a given criterion could be variously affected by different test concentrations. The complex pattern of responses may be explained in terms of the differential sensitivity of the interacting species and perhaps subtle alteration in strategies. The sensitivity of the bioassay endpoints is compared to those of a range of single species tests, and their value for predicting the impact pollutants may have upon natural freshwater ecosystems is discussed.

  20. Context-dependent crypsis: a prey's perspective of a color polymorphic predator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez-Morales, D.; Rico-Gray, V.; García-Franco, J. G.; Ajuria-Ibarra, H.; Hernández-Salazar, L. T.; Robledo-Ospina, L. E.; Rao, D.

    2018-06-01

    Many animals use body coloration as a strategy to communicate with conspecifics, prey, and predators. Color is a trade-off for some species, since they should be visible to conspecifics but cryptic to predators and prey. Some flower-dwelling predators, such as crab spiders, are capable of choosing the color of flowers where they ambush flower visitors and pollinators. In order to avoid being captured, visitors evaluate flowers visually before landing. The crab spider Mecaphesa dubia is a polymorphic species (white/purple color morphs), which inhabits the flower heads of a dune plant, Palafoxia lindenii. Using full-spectrum photography of spiders and flowers, we evaluated how honeybees perceived the spiders at different distances. Using visual modeling, we obtained the chromatic and achromatic contrasts of the spiders on flower heads as perceived by honeybees. Purple morphs were found mainly on the receptacle area and white morphs were equally likely to be found in the flowers and receptacle. According to theoretical modeling, white morphs were visible to honeybees from a distance of 10 cm in receptacle area but appeared to be cryptic in the flower area. Purple morphs were cryptic on the receptacle and less so when they were on the flowers. Spiders on flower heads are predicted to be more easily detected by honeybees using chromatic contrast. Our study shows that the conspicuousness of flower dwelling spiders to honeybees depends on the color morph, the distance of observation, and the position of spider on the flower head.

  1. Perceiving the algae: How feeding-current feeding copepods detect their nonmotile prey

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Goncalves, Rodrigo J.; Kiørboe, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    demonstrate that (1) long-range chemical detection is incompatible with known algal leakage rates and reasonable assumptions of sensitivity, (2) that near-field chemical detection is constrained by diffusion across the boundary layer of the sensor and takes longer than observed near-contact times, and (3......Feeding-current feeding copepods detect and capture prey individually, but the mechanism by which nonmotile prey is detected has been unclear. Early reports that copepods detect phytoplankton prey at distances of one body length or more led to the hypothesis that solutes leaking from the prey would......) that most reported detection distances are well predicted by models of fluid mechanical signal generation and detection. We conclude that near-field mechanoreception is the common prey detection mode in pelagic copepods. Prey detection distances are thus governed mainly by the reach of the feeding...

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hanula, James, L.; Horn, Scott

    2004-12-31

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seo, G.; DeAngelis, D.L.

    2011-01-01

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

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    John Kilgo

    2005-04-20

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

  5. Relationship between bird-of-prey decals and bird-window collisions on a Brazilian university campus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thaís Brisque

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Bird-window collisions are a dramatic cause of bird mortality globally. In Latin America, statistics are generally very scarce and/or inaccessible so the frequency of such incidents is still poorly understood. Nevertheless, civilians have applied preventive methods (e.g. adhesive bird-of-prey decals sparsely but, to our knowledge, no study has evaluated their effectiveness in Brazil. Here, we estimated the mortality rate of bird-window collisions and tested the effectiveness of bird-of-prey decals at preventing such accidents. We undertook daily searches for bird carcasses, presumably resulting from window collisions, near all buildings on a university campus over seven months. Adhesive bird-of-prey decals were then applied to the two buildings with the highest mortality rates and surveys continued for over 12 more months. The mortality rates before and after the application of decals and between seasons were then compared using Friedman test. We recorded 36 collisions, 29 around the two buildings with the highest collision rates 19 prior and 10 after our intervention with associated collision rates of 0.08 and 0.04 collisions/day. Although mortality was reduced by almost half, this difference was not statistically significant. The Blue-black grassquit, Volatinia jacarina (Linnaeus, 1766, and Ruddy ground dove, Columbina talpacoti (Temminck, 1810 suffered the highest number of collisions, followed by the Rufous-collared sparrow, Zonotrichia capensis (P. L. Statius Müller, 1776. Our bird-of-prey decals and efforts were insufficient to prevent or dramatically reduce the number of bird-window collisions. Therefore, we recommend that different interventions be used and additional long-term studies undertaken on their efficacy.

  6. Multi-State Dependent Impulsive Control for Holling I Predator-Prey Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huidong Cheng

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available According to the different effects of biological and chemical control, we propose a model for Holling I functional response predator-prey system concerning pest control which adopts different control methods at different thresholds. By using differential equation geometry theory and the method of successor functions, we prove that the existence of order one periodic solution of such system and the attractiveness of the order one periodic solution by sequence convergence rules and qualitative analysis. Numerical simulations are carried out to illustrate the feasibility of our main results which show that our method used in this paper is more efficient and easier than the existing ones for proving the existence of order one periodic solution.

  7. Foraging mode and prey size spectra of suspension-feeding copepods and other zooplankton

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kiørboe, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Prey size spectra of suspension-feeding zooplankton may be predicted from foraging mode and a mechanistic understanding of prey perception and capture. I examine this for suspension-feeding copepods where 2 foraging modes can be distinguished: ambush feeding and active (i.e. cruising and feeding-...... the prediction. I also make qualitative predictions of food size spectra in zooplankton with other prey perception mechanisms that accord with observations....

  8. Do top predators cue on sound production by mesopelagic prey?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baumann-Pickering, S.; Checkley, D. M., Jr.; Demer, D. A.

    2016-02-01

    Deep-scattering layer (DSL) organisms, comprising a variety of mesopelagic fishes, and squids, siphonophores, crustaceans, and other invertebrates, are preferred prey for numerous large marine predators, e.g. cetaceans, seabirds, and fishes. Some of the DSL species migrate from depth during daylight to feed near the surface at night, transitioning during dusk and dawn. We investigated if any DSL organisms create sound, particularly during the crepuscular periods. Over several nights in summer 2015, underwater sound was recorded in the San Diego Trough using a high-frequency acoustic recording package (HARP, 10 Hz to 100 kHz), suspended from a drifting surface float. Acoustic backscatter from the DSL was monitored nearby using a calibrated multiple-frequency (38, 70, 120, and 200 kHz) split-beam echosounder (Simrad EK60) on a small boat. DSL organisms produced sound, between 300 and 1000 Hz, and the received levels were highest when the animals migrated past the recorder during ascent and descent. The DSL are globally present, so the observed acoustic phenomenon, if also ubiquitous, has wide-reaching implications. Sound travels farther than light or chemicals and thus can be sensed at greater distances by predators, prey, and mates. If sound is a characteristic feature of pelagic ecosystems, it likely plays a role in predator-prey relationships and overall ecosystem dynamics. Our new finding inspires numerous questions such as: Which, how, and why have DSL organisms evolved to create sound, for what do they use it and under what circumstances? Is sound production by DSL organisms truly ubiquitous, or does it depend on the local environment and species composition? How may sound production and perception be adapted to a changing environment? Do predators react to changes in sound? Can sound be used to quantify the composition of mixed-species assemblages, component densities and abundances, and hence be used in stock assessment or predictive modeling?

  9. Quenching behaviour for a singular predator–prey model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ducrot, Arnaud; Guo, Jong-Shenq

    2012-01-01

    In this paper, we study the quenching behaviour for a system of two reaction–diffusion equations arising in the modelling of the spatio-temporal interaction of prey and predator populations in fragile environment. We first provide some sufficient conditions on the initial data to have finite time quenching. Then we classify the initial data to distinguish type I quenching and type II quenching, by introducing a delicate energy functional along with the help of some a priori estimates. Finally, we present some results on the quenching set. It can be a singleton, the whole domain, or a compact subset of the domain

  10. Ineffective crypsis in a crab spider: a prey community perspective

    OpenAIRE

    Brechbühl, Rolf; Casas, Jérôme; Bacher, Sven

    2009-01-01

    Cryptic coloration is assumed to be beneficial to predators because of an increased encounter rate with unwary prey. This hypothesis is, however, very rarely, if ever, studied in the field. The aim of this study was to quantify the encounter rate and capture success of an ambush predator, in the field, as a function of its level of colour-matching with the background. We used the crab spider Misumena vatia, which varies its body colour and can thereby match the colour of the flower it hunts u...

  11. Dominant Glint Based Prey Localization in Horseshoe Bats: A Possible Strategy for Noise Rejection

    OpenAIRE

    Vanderelst, Dieter; Reijniers, Jonas; Firzlaff, Uwe; Peremans, Herbert

    2011-01-01

    Rhinolophidae or Horseshoe bats emit long and narrowband calls. Fluttering insect prey generates echoes in which amplitude and frequency shifts are present, i.e. glints. These glints are reliable cues about the presence of prey and also encode certain properties of the prey. In this paper, we propose that these glints, i.e. the dominant glints, are also reliable signals upon which to base prey localization. In contrast to the spectral cues used by many other bats, the localization cues in Rhi...

  12. Prey preferences of aquatic insects: potential implications for the regulation of wetland mosquitoes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saha, N; Aditya, G; Saha, G K

    2014-03-01

    Wetlands are potential sites for mosquito breeding and are thus important in the context of public health. The use of chemical and microbial controls is constrained in wetlands in view of their potential impact on the diverse biota. Biological control using generalist aquatic insects can be effective, provided a preference for mosquito larvae is exhibited. The mosquito prey preferences of water bugs and larvae of odonate species were evaluated using chironomid larvae, fish fingerlings and tadpoles as alternative prey. Manly's selectivity (αi ) values with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were estimated to judge prey preference patterns. Multivariate analysis of variance (manova) and standardized canonical coefficients were used to test the effects of density on prey selectivity. The αi values indicated a significant preference (P insect predators tested for mosquito larvae over the alternative prey as a density-dependent function. On a comparative scale, chironomid larvae had the highest impact as alternative prey. In a multiple-prey experiment, predators showed a similar pattern of preference for mosquito larvae over alternative prey, reflecting a significant (P insect predators can effectively reduce mosquito density in the presence of multiple alternative prey. © 2013 The Royal Entomological Society.

  13. Prey and mound disassembly, manipulation and transport by fire ant collectives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dutta, Bahnisikha; Monaenkova, Daria; Goodisman, Michael A.; Goldman, Daniel

    Fire ants inhabit subterranean nests covered by a hemispherical mound of soil permeated by narrow ( 1 body length diameter) tunnels. Fire ants can use their mound for long-term food storage [Gayahan &Tschinkel, J. Insect Sci.,2008]. Since mound tunnels are narrow, we expect that in addition to prey manipulation, mound reconfiguration could also be an important aspect of the food storage strategy. Ant colonies collected from wild were allowed to build nests in containers filled with clay soil in the laboratory. These colonies were offered diverse prey embedded with lead markers, including mealworms, crickets and shrimp. Ant-prey-soil interactions on the nest surface were recorded using overhead video and subsurface using x-ray imaging. Individual ants involved in prey storage exhibited three distinct behaviors: prey maneuvering, prey dissection and mound reconfiguration. Small prey (e.g. mealworms) were collectively carried intact into the mound through a tunnel, and then disassembled within the mound. Larger prey (e.g. shrimp) were dismantled into small pieces above the surface and carried to mound tunnels. The bodies of hard medium-sized prey (e.g. crickets) were buried after limb removal and then disassembled and moved into tunnels. Soil reconfiguration occurred in all cases.

  14. Modelling the attack success of planktonic predators: patterns and mechanisms of prey size selectivity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Caparroy, P.; Thygesen, Uffe Høgsbro; Visser, Andre

    2000-01-01

    of being captured. By combining the attack success model with previously published hydrodynamic models of predator and prey perception, we examine how predator foraging behaviour and prey perceptive ability affect the size spectra of encountered and captured copepod prey. We examine food size spectra of (i......) a rheotactic cruising predator, (ii) a suspension-feeding hovering copepod and (iii) a larval fish. For rheotactic predators such as carnivorous copepods, a central assumption of the model is that attack is triggered by prey escape reaction, which in turn depends on the deformation rate of the fluid created...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-01-01

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

  16. Foraging behavior of larval cod ( Gadus morhua ) influenced by prey density and hunger

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Munk, Peter

    1995-01-01

    activity, prey selectivity, and hunger in a variable prey environment. Gadus morhua eggs were collected in March 1992 and 1993 from the Kattegat area, Denmark, fertilised and incubated in the laboratory. After hatching, the larvae were transferred to rearing tanks of 172 litres. The behaviour of larvae (6...... their prey size selectivity. Behavioural response was to a large degree determined by the level of hunger, represented by the number of newly ingested prey in the gut. The findings show that cod larvae have a flexible response to changes in feeding conditions and imply that larvae can grow and survive even...

  17. Does the aggressiveness of the prey modify the attack behavior of the predator Supputius cincticeps (Stål (Hemiptera, Pentatomidae?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rafael Braga da Silva

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Does the aggressiveness of the prey modify the attack behavior of the predator Supputius cincticeps (Stål (Hemiptera, Pentatomidae? The stink bug Supputius cincticeps (Stål (Hemiptera, Pentatomidae is a predator found in several Brazilian regions, which possesses desirable attributes as a natural control agent and in biological control programs. The aim of this study was to test if the attack behavior and predation success of S. cincticeps were affected by prey species. Larvae of Tenebrio molitor (L. (Coleoptera, Tenebrionidae, Spodoptera frugiperda (J. E. Smith (Lepidoptera, Noctuidae, and Thyrinteina arnobia (Stoll (Lepidoptera, Geometridae were offered to S. cincticeps in laboratory bioassays where predatory attack and prey defensive behaviors were observed for 2-hour periods. The attack behavior of S. cincticeps changed with the prey species offered. More than 25% of T. molitor and S. frugiperda larvae were immediately attacked, but T. arnobia was not immediately attacked by S. cincticeps. Successful attack (i.e., successful insertion of the predator stylets into the prey depends on the region of the body attacked, with a greater proportion of successful attacks in the anterior than in the median or posterior regions. Larvae of T. arnobia and S. frugiperda displayed a sequence of abrupt head and body movements in response to S. cincticeps attack. Attempts of predation were more successful on T. molitor and S. frugiperda than on T. arnobia. Information about the differential attack behavior of S. cincticeps on different prey species is important for designing successful biological control programs using this hemipteran predator.

  18. Bioaccumulation of As, Cd, Cr, Hg(II), and MeHg in killifish (Fundulus heteroclitus) from amphipod and worm prey

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dutton, Jessica, E-mail: dutton.jess@gmail.com; Fisher, Nicholas S., E-mail: nfisher@notes.cc.sunysb.edu

    2011-08-15

    Elevated metal levels in fish are a concern for the fish themselves, their predators, and possibly humans who consume contaminated seafood. Metal bioaccumulation models often rely on assimilation efficiencies (AEs) of ingested metals and loss rate constants after dietary exposure (k{sub ef}s). These models can be used to better understand processes regulating metal accumulation and can be used to make site-specific predictions of metal concentrations in animal tissues. Fish often consume a varied diet, and prey choice can influence these two parameters. We investigated the trophic transfer of As, Cd, Cr, Hg(II), and methylmercury (MeHg) from a benthic amphipod (Leptocheirus plumulosus) and an oligochaete (Lumbriculus variegatus) to killifish (Fundulus heteroclitus) using gamma-emitting radioisotopes. Except for MeHg, AEs varied between prey type. AEs were highest for MeHg (92%) and lowest for Cd (2.9-4.5%) and Cr (0.2-4%). Hg(II) showed the largest AE difference between prey type (14% amphipods, 24% worms). For Cd and Hg(II) k{sub ef}s were higher after consuming amphipods than consuming worms. Tissue distribution data shows that Cd and Hg(II) were mainly associated with the intestine, whereas As and MeHg were transported throughout the body. Calculated trophic transfer factors (TTFs) suggest that MeHg is likely to biomagnify at this trophic step at all ingestion rates, whereas As, Cd, Cr, and Hg(II) will not. Data collected in this study and others indicate that using one prey item to calculate AE and k{sub ef} could lead to an over- or underestimation of these parameters. - Highlights: {yields} We investigated the trophic transfer of metals to killifish from amphipod and worm prey. {yields} Prey choice influences metal accumulation from the diet. {yields} Only MeHg is likely to biomagnify at this trophic step.

  19. Limits to benthic feeding by eiders in a vital Arctic migration corridor due to localized prey and changing sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lovvorn, James R.; Rocha, Aariel R.; Jewett, Stephen C.; Dasher, Douglas; Oppel, Steffen; Powell, Abby

    2015-01-01

    Four species of threatened or declining eider ducks that nest in the Arctic migrate through the northeast Chukchi Sea, where anticipated industrial development may require prioritizing areas for conservation. In this nearshore corridor (10–40 m depth), the eiders’ access to benthic prey during the spring is restricted to variable areas of open water within sea ice. For the most abundant species, the king eider (Somateria spectabilis), stable isotopes in blood cells, muscle, and potential prey indicate that these eiders ate mainly bivalves when traversing this corridor. Bivalves there were much smaller than the same taxa in deeper areas of the northern Bering Sea, possibly due to higher mortality rates caused by ice scour in shallow water; future decrease in seasonal duration of fast ice may increase this effect. Computer simulations suggested that if these eiders forage for >15 h/day, they can feed profitably at bivalve densities >200 m−2 regardless of water depth or availability of ice for resting. Sampling in 2010–2012 showed that large areas of profitable prey densities occurred only in certain locations throughout the migration corridor. Satellite data in April–May over 13 years (2001–2013) indicated that access to major feeding areas through sea ice in different segments of the corridor can vary from 0% to 100% between months and years. In a warming and increasingly variable climate, unpredictability of access may be enhanced by greater effects of shifting winds on unconsolidated ice. Our results indicate the importance of having a range of potential feeding areas throughout the migration corridor to ensure prey availability in all years. Spatial planning of nearshore industrial development in the Arctic, including commercial shipping, pipeline construction, and the risk of released oil, should consider these effects of high environmental variability on the adequacy of habitats targeted for conservation.

  20. Effects of prey type on specific dynamic action, growth, and mass conversion efficiencies in the horned frog, Ceratophrys cranwelli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grayson, Kristine L; Cook, Leslie W; Todd, M Jason; Pierce, D; Hopkins, William A; Gatten, Robert E; Dorcas, Michael E

    2005-07-01

    To be most energetically profitable, predators should ingest prey with the maximal nutritional benefit while minimizing the cost of processing. Therefore, when determining the quality of prey items, both the cost of processing and nutritional content must be considered. Specific dynamic action (SDA), the increase in metabolic rate associated with feeding in animals, is a significant processing cost that represents the total cost of digestion and assimilation of nutrients from prey. We examined the effects of an invertebrate diet (earthworms) and a vertebrate diet (newborn mice) on mass conversion efficiencies, growth, and SDA in the Chacoan horned frog, Ceratophrys cranwelli. We found the earthworm diet to be significantly lower in lipid, protein, and energy content when compared to the diet of newborn mice. Growth and mass conversion efficiencies were significantly higher in frogs fed newborn mice. However, mean SDA did not differ between frogs fed the two diets, a finding that contradicts many studies that indicate SDA increases with the protein content of the meal. Together, our results indicate that future studies evaluating the effect of meal type on bioenergetics of herpetofauna are warranted and may provide significant insight into the underlying factors driving SDA.

  1. Enhanced invertebrate prey production following estuarine restoration supports foraging for multiple species of juvenile salmonids (Oncorhynchus spp.)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woo, Isa; Davis, Melanie; Ellings, Christopher S.; Nakai, Glynnis; Takekawa, John Y.; De La Cruz, Susan

    2018-01-01

    Estuaries provide crucial foraging resources and nursery habitat for threatened populations of anadromous salmon. As such, there has been a global undertaking to restore habitat and tidal processes in modified estuaries. The foraging capacity of these ecosystems to support various species of out-migrating juvenile salmon can be quantified by monitoring benthic, terrestrial, and pelagic invertebrate prey communities. Here, we present notable trends in the availability of invertebrate prey at several sites within a restoring large river delta in Puget Sound, Washington, U.S.A. Three years after the system was returned to tidal influence, we observed substantial additions to amphipod, copepod, and cumacean abundances in newly accessible marsh channels (from 0 to roughly 5,000–75,000 individuals/m2). In the restoration area, terrestrial invertebrate colonization was dependent upon vegetative cover, with dipteran and hymenopteran biomass increasing 3-fold between 1 and 3 years post-restoration. While the overall biodiversity within the restoration area was lower than in the reference marsh, estimated biomass was comparable to or greater than that found within the other study sites. This additional prey biomass likely provided foraging benefits for juvenile Chinook, chum, and coho salmon. Primary physical drivers differed for benthic, terrestrial, and pelagic invertebrates, and these invertebrate communities are expected to respond differentially depending on organic matter exchange and vegetative colonization. Restoring estuaries may take decades to meet certain success criteria, but our study demonstrates rapid enhancements in foraging resources understood to be used for estuary-dependent wildlife.

  2. Behavioural responses of two-spotted spider mites induced by predator-borne and prey-borne cues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gyuris, Enikő; Szép, Erna; Kontschán, Jenő; Hettyey, Attila; Tóth, Zoltán

    2017-11-01

    Applying predatory mites as biological control agents is a well established method against spider mites which are major pests worldwide. Although antipredator responses can influence the outcome of predator-prey interactions, we have limited information about what cues spider mites use to adjust their behavioural antipredator responses. We experimentally exposed two-spotted spider mites (Tetranychus urticae) to different predator-borne cues (using a specialist predator, Phytoseiulus persimilis, or a generalist predator, Amblyseius swirskii), conspecific prey-borne cues, or both, and measured locomotion and egg-laying activity. The reactions to predator species compared to each other manifested in reversed tendencies: spider mites increased their locomotion activity in the presence of P. persimilis, whereas they decreased it when exposed to A. swirskii. The strongest response was triggered by the presence of a killed conspecific: focal spider mites decreased their locomotion activity compared to the control group. Oviposition activity was not affected by either treatment. Our results point out that spider mites may change their behaviour in response to predators, and also to the presence of killed conspecifics, but these effects were not enhanced when both types of cues were present. The effect of social contacts among prey conspecifics on predator-induced behavioural defences is discussed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Diet, Prey Selection, and Body Condition of Age-0 Delta Smelt, Hypomesus transpacificus, in the Upper San Francisco Estuary

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven B. Slater

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Steven B. Slater and Randall D. Baxterdoi: http://dx.doi.org/10.15447/sfews.2014v12iss3art1The Delta Smelt, an endangered fish, has suffered a long-term decline in abundance, believed to result from, in part, to changes in the pelagic food web of the upper San Francisco Estuary. To investigate the current role of food as a factor in Delta Smelt well-being, we developed reference criteria for gut fullness and body condition based on allometric growth. We then examined monthly diet, prey selectivity, and gut fullness of larvae and juvenile Delta Smelt collected April through September in 2005 and 2006 for evidence of feeding difficulties leading to reduced body condition. Calanoid copepods Eurytemora affinis and Pseudodiaptomus forbesi remained major food items during spring and from early summer through fall, respectively. Other much larger copepods and macroinvertebrates contributed in lesser numbers to the diet of older juvenile fish from mid-summer through fall. In fall, juvenile Delta Smelt periodically relied heavily on very small prey and prey potentially associated with demersal habitat, suggesting typical pelagic food items were in short supply. We found a strong positive selection for E. affinis and P. forbesi, neutral to negative selection for evasive calanoid Sinocalanus doerrii, and neutral to negative selection for the small cyclopoid copepod Limnoithona tetraspina and copepod nauplii, which were consumed only when extremely numerous in the environment. Feeding incidence was significantly higher in 2006, but among successfully feeding fish we found no between year difference in gut fullness. However, we did detect differences in fullness across months in both years. We found no difference in body condition of Delta Smelt between years yet our sample sizes were low in September when Delta Smelt reverted to feeding on very small organisms and fullness declined, so the longer-term effect remains unknown. Our findings suggest that: Delta

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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. Boundedness and permanence in a class of periodic time-dependent predator-prey system with prey dispersal and predator density-independence

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang Long; Teng Zhidong

    2008-01-01

    In this paper, we study two species predator-prey Lotka-Volterra type dispersal system with periodic coefficients, in which the prey species can disperse among n patches, while the density-independent predator species is confined to one of the patches and cannot disperse. Sufficient conditions on the boundedness, permanence and existence of positive periodic solution for this system are established. The theoretical results are confirmed by a special example and numerical simulations

  6. Spatial variation of mercury levels in nesting Bonelli's eagles from Southwest Portugal: effects of diet composition and prey contamination

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Palma, Luis [CCMAR, Universidade do Algarve, FCMA, Campus de Gambelas, 8005-139 Faro (Portugal)]. E-mail: lpalma@ualg.pt; Beja, Pedro [CCMAR, Universidade do Algarve, FCMA, Campus de Gambelas, 8005-139 Faro (Portugal); ERENA, Av. Visconde Valmor, 11-3, 1000-289 Lisbon (Portugal); Tavares, Paula C. [IMAR, Universidade dos Acores, Departamento de Pescas e Oceanografia, Cais Sta. Cruz, 9901-862 Horta (Portugal); Monteiro, Luis R. [IMAR, Universidade dos Acores, Departamento de Pescas e Oceanografia, Cais Sta. Cruz, 9901-862 Horta (Portugal)

    2005-04-01

    Mercury (Hg) was determined in adult Bonelli's eagles (Hieraaetus fasciatus) and their avian prey, from samples of feathers collected between 1992 and 2001 at the nesting sites of 21 pairs in Southwest Portugal. Eagle Hg levels showed great variation, reflecting primarily differences in diet composition and food chain biomagnification. Concentrations were positively correlated with the dietary proportion of insectivorous and omnivorous birds (e.g. egrets, corvids and thrushes), with very low levels for pairs feeding mainly on herbivores (e.g. rabbits, pigeons and partridges). Differences in prey contamination among breeding territories added to dietary effects in determining variation of Hg levels in eagles, shaping a spatial pattern that was largely consistent with a source of contamination in a coal-burning power-plant lying upwind of the study area. Despite this presumed contamination, Hg levels seemed to be of little concern to this eagle population, though there might be subtle deleterious effects on the reproductive output of a few pairs. This study emphasizes the need to account for dietary effects when biomonitoring Hg contamination using birds of prey. - The effects of diet composition and prey contamination added up to determine the spatial variation of Hg levels in breeding Bonelli's eagles.

  7. Joint evolution of predator body size and prey-size preference.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Troost, T.A.; Kooi, B.W.; Dieckmann, U.

    2007-01-01

    We studied the joint evolution of predator body size and prey-size preference based on dynamic energy budget theory. The predators' demography and their functional response are based on general eco-physiological principles involving the size of both predator and prey. While our model can account for

  8. 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).

  9. Joint evolution of predator body size and prey-size preference

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Troost, Tineke; Kooi, Bob; Dieckmann, Ulf

    2007-01-01

    We studied the joint evolution of predator body size and prey-size preference based on dynamic energy budget theory. The predators’ demography and their functional response are based on general eco-physiological principles involving the size of both predator and prey. While our model can account

  10. Penguin head movement detected using small accelerometers: a proxy of prey encounter rate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kokubun, Nobuo; Kim, Jeong-Hoon; Shin, Hyoung-Chul; Naito, Yasuhiko; Takahashi, Akinori

    2011-11-15

    Determining temporal and spatial variation in feeding rates is essential for understanding the relationship between habitat features and the foraging behavior of top predators. In this study we examined the utility of head movement as a proxy of prey encounter rates in medium-sized Antarctic penguins, under the presumption that the birds should move their heads actively when they encounter and peck prey. A field study of free-ranging chinstrap and gentoo penguins was conducted at King George Island, Antarctica. Head movement was recorded using small accelerometers attached to the head, with simultaneous monitoring for prey encounter or body angle. The main prey was Antarctic krill (>99% in wet mass) for both species. Penguin head movement coincided with a slow change in body angle during dives. Active head movements were extracted using a high-pass filter (5 Hz acceleration signals) and the remaining acceleration peaks (higher than a threshold acceleration of 1.0 g) were counted. The timing of head movements coincided well with images of prey taken from the back-mounted cameras: head movement was recorded within ±2.5 s of a prey image on 89.1±16.1% (N=7 trips) of images. The number of head movements varied largely among dive bouts, suggesting large temporal variations in prey encounter rates. Our results show that head movement is an effective proxy of prey encounter, and we suggest that the method will be widely applicable for a variety of predators.

  11. Intra-seasonal Strategies Based on Energy Budgets in a Dynamic Predator-Prey Game

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Staňková, K.; Abate, A.; Sabelis, M.W.; Křivan, V.; Zaccour, G.

    2013-01-01

    We propose a game-theoretical model to describe intra-seasonal predator-prey interactions between predatory mites (Acari: Phytoseiidae) and prey mites (also called fruit-tree red spider mites) (Acari: Tetranychidae) that feed on leaves of apple trees. Its parameters have been instantiated based on

  12. Clay Caterpillar Whodunit: A Customizable Method for Studying Predator-Prey Interactions in the Field

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curtis, Rachel; Klemens, Jeffrey A.; Agosta, Salvatore J.; Bartlow, Andrew W.; Wood, Steve; Carlson, Jason A.; Stratford, Jeffrey A.; Steele, Michael A.

    2013-01-01

    Predator-prey dynamics are an important concept in ecology, often serving as an introduction to the field of community ecology. However, these dynamics are difficult for students to observe directly. We describe a methodology that employs model caterpillars made of clay to estimate rates of predator attack on a prey species. This approach can be…

  13. 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.

  14. Stomach fullness shapes prey choice decisions in crab plovers (Dromas ardeola)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gommer, Roy; Bom, Roeland A.; Fijen, Thijs P.M.; Gils, Van Jan A.

    2018-01-01

    Foragers whose energy intake rate is constrained by search and handling time should, according to the contingency model (CM), select prey items whose profitability exceeds or equals the forager’s long-term average energy intake rate. This rule does not apply when prey items are found and ingested at

  15. An impulsive predator-prey system with modified Leslie-Gower and Holling type II schemes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Guo Hongjian; Song Xinyu

    2008-01-01

    An impulsive predator-prey system with modified Leslie-Gower and Holling-type II schemes is presented. By using the Floquet theory of impulsive equation and small amplitude perturbation method, the globally asymptotical stability of prey-free positive periodic solution and the permanence of system are discussed. The corresponding threshold conditions are obtained respectively. Finally, numerical simulations are given

  16. Recognising one's enemies : a functional approach to risk assessment by prey

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Grostal, P.; Dicke, M.

    2000-01-01

    Little has been done to compare the relative importance of various mechanisms through which prey assess the potential risk from natural enemies. We used predator-naive spider mites (Tetranychus urticae, Tetranychidae) to (1) compare the responses of prey to chemical cues from enemy and non-enemy

  17. The diet of otters ( Lutra lutra L.) in Danish freshwater habitats : comparisons of prey fish populations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Taastrom, H.M.; Jacobsen, Lene

    1999-01-01

    Otter spraints from five Danish freshwater localities were analysed. In all localities fish was the main prey (76-99% of estimated bulk), especially in winter. Depending on locality, the prey fish mainly consisted of cyprinids (Cyprinidae), percids (Percidae) or salmonids (Salmonidae). Seasonal v...

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vesterinen, Eero; Ruokolainen, Lasse; Wahlberg, Niklas; Pena, Carlos; Roslin, Tomas; Laine, V.; Vasko, Ville; Sääksjärvi, Ilari; Norrdahl, Kai; Lilley, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Optimal foraging theory predicts that predators are selective when faced with abundant prey, but become less picky when prey gets sparse. Insectivorous bats in temperate regions are faced with the challenge of building up fat reserves vital for hibernation during a period of decreasing arthropod

  19. Estimation of feeding patterns for piscivorous fish using individual prey data from stomach contents

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Berg, Casper Willestofte; Temming, Axel

    2011-01-01

    The problem of estimating temporal feeding patterns using stomach data is considered, where the time of ingestion for each prey item can be predicted through a gastric evacuation model. The arrival of prey is modelled as a nonhomogeneous Poisson process with known periodic intensity. A maximum...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2006-05-22

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

  1. Are We Really the Prey? Nanotechnology as Science and Science Fiction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowman, Diana M.; Hodge, Graeme A.; Binks, Peter

    2007-01-01

    Popular culture can play a significant role in shaping the acceptance of evolving technologies, with nanotechnology likely to be a case in point. The most popular fiction work to date in this arena has been Michael Crichton's techno-thriller "Prey," which fuses together nanotechnology science with science fiction. Within the context of "Prey,"…

  2. Effective prey attraction in the rare Drosophyllum lusitanicum, a flypaper-trap carnivorous plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertol, Nils; Paniw, Maria; Ojeda, Fernando

    2015-05-01

    Carnivorous plants have unusually modified leaves to trap insects as an adaptation to low-nutrient environments. Disparate mechanisms have been suggested as luring traits to attract prey insects into their deadly leaves, ranging from very elaborate to none at all. Drosophyllum lusitanicum is a rare carnivorous plant with a common flypaper-trap mechanism. Here we tested whether Drosophyllum plants lure prey insects into their leaves or they act just as passive traps. We compared prey capture between live, potted plants and Drosophyllum-shaped artificial mimics coated with odorless glue. Since this species is insect-pollinated, we also explored the possible existence of a pollinator-prey conflict by quantifying the similarity between the pollination and prey guilds in a natural population. All experiments were done in southern Spain. The sticky leaves of Drosophyllum captured significantly more prey than mimics, particularly small dipterans. Prey attraction, likely exerted by scent or visual cues, seems to be unrelated to pollinator attraction by flowers, as inferred from the low similarity between pollinator and prey insect faunas found in this species. Our results illustrate the effectiveness of this carnivorous species at attracting insects to their flypaper-trap leaves. © 2015 Botanical Society of America, Inc.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pöysä, Hannu; Jalava, Kaisa; Paasivaara, Antti

    2016-12-01

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

  4. BEHAVIOR AND PREY OF NESTING RED-SHOULDERED HAWKS IN SOUTHWESTERN OHIO

    Science.gov (United States)

    We used direct observations to quantify prey types, prey delivery rate, and adult and nestling behavior at nests of Red-shouldered Hawks (Buteo lineatus) in suburban southwestern Ohio. Twenty-one nests were observed for a total of 256 hr in 1997-2001. Small mammals made up the ...

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2012-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Azmy S. Ackleh

    2000-01-01

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

  7. Digestion rates of prey eaten by intertidal sea anemones from the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Digestion rates were determined for natural prey items offered to each of seven species of sea anemones found at Wooley's Pool in False Say and to the single species (Bunodactis reynaudl) recorded at Siouberg on the Atlantic coast of the south-western Cape, South Africa.This was done by examining prey items removed ...

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ens, B; KLAASSEN, M; ZWARTS, L

    1993-01-01

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

  9. Effect of location and season on the arthropod prey of Nycteris ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Analysis of culled arthropod prey parts collected from beneath four feeding perches was used to assess prey taken by Nycteris grandis from November 1987 to May 1988. The perches were located along the Zambezi River in Mana Pools National Park in Zimbabwe.With the exception of an occasional solifugid, N. grandis ...

  10. Arthropod prey of nestling red-cockaded woodpeckers in the upper coastal plain of South Carolina

    Science.gov (United States)

    James L. Hanula; Kathleen E. Franzreb

    1995-01-01

    Four nest cavities of the Red-cockaded Woodpecker (Picoides borealis) were monitored with automatic cameras to determine the prey selected to feed nestlings. Twelve adults were photographed making nearly 3000 nest visits. Prey in 28 arthropod taxa were recognizable in 65% of the photographic slides. Wood roaches in the genus (Parcoblutta...

  11. Influence of prey abundance and abiotic factors on the long-term ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... the home-range distribution of spotted grunter. Spatial distribution of prey appears to be a dominant factor influencing home-range parameters of this species within an intermittently open estuary. Keywords: acoustic telemetry, East Kleinemonde Estuary, estuarine fish, movement behaviour, prey abundance, South Africa ...

  12. Birds exploit herbivore-induced plant volatiles to locate herbivorous prey

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Amo, L.; Jansen, J.J.; Dam, van N.M.; Dicke, M.; Visser, M.E.

    2013-01-01

    Arthropod herbivory induces plant volatiles that can be used by natural enemies of the herbivores to find their prey. This has been studied mainly for arthropods that prey upon or parasitise herbivorous arthropods but rarely for insectivorous birds, one of the main groups of predators of herbivorous

  13. Along Came a Spider: Using Live Arthropods in a Predator-Prey Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richardson, Matthew L.; Hari, Janice

    2011-01-01

    We developed a predator-prey activity with eighth-grade students in which they used wolf spiders ("Lycosa carolinensis"), house crickets ("Acheta domestica"), and abiotic factors to address how (1) adaptations in predators and prey shape their interaction and (2) abiotic factors modify the interaction between predators and…

  14. Clock-Controlled Prey-Predator Dynamics : Temporal Segregation of Activities

    OpenAIRE

    Hiroaki, DAIDO; Department of Mathematical Sciences, Graduate School of Engineering, University of Osaka Prefecture

    2003-01-01

    A new type of mathematical model of prey-predator dynamics is proposed. This model takes into account the fact that the daily activities of animals are governed by their body clocks. On the basis of it, we investigate the conditions under which the prey and predator can segregate into diurnal and nocturnal habits on a timescale that is short compared to evolutionary timescales.

  15. Foraging efficiency of a predator flock for randomly moving prey: A simulation study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Sang-Hee; Kwon, Ohsung

    2016-03-01

    Flocking behavior of animals is highly advantageous for taking food resources. The degree of the advantage is related to the ability of flock members to detect their prey and the mobility of prey individuals. In this study, to explore the relation, we constructed a model to simulate a predator flock and its randomly moving prey. The predator members have the prey detection ability, which was characterized as sensing distance, R, and a sensing angle, θ. The mobility of the prey individuals was characterized as the maximum traveling distance of an iteration time step, L. The relative flock foraging efficiency, ɛ, was defined as ɛ = 1 - (Td/Tup). Tup and Td represent the spent time for the flock to eat all prey individuals and to uptake the last remaining 10% prey, respectively. Simulation results showed that ɛ increased, maximized, and decreased with the increase of R, regardless of L. As the number of prey, N, increased, the tendency of the increasing and decreasing was diluted. The result was briefly discussed in relation to the flock foraging behavior and the development of the model toward applications for real ecosystems.

  16. 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...

  17. Challenges to a molecular approach to prey identification in the Burmese python, Python molurus bivittatus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Falk, Bryan; Reed, Robert N.

    2015-01-01

    Molecular approaches to prey identification are increasingly useful in elucidating predator–prey relationships, and we aimed to investigate the feasibility of these methods to document the species identities of prey consumed by invasive Burmese pythons in Florida. We were particularly interested in the diet of young snakes, because visual identification of prey from this size class has proven difficult. We successfully extracted DNA from the gastrointestinal contents of 43 young pythons, as well as from several control samples, and attempted amplification of DNA mini-barcodes, a 130-bp region of COX1. Using a PNA clamp to exclude python DNA, we found that prey DNA was not present in sufficient quality for amplification of this locus in 86% of our samples. All samples from the GI tracts of young pythons contained only hair, and the six samples we were able to identify to species were hispid cotton rats. This suggests that young Burmese pythons prey predominantly on small mammals and that prey diversity among snakes of this size class is low. We discuss prolonged gastrointestinal transit times and extreme gastric breakdown as possible causes of DNA degradation that limit the success of a molecular approach to prey identification in Burmese pythons

  18. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul G. Livingstone

    2017-08-01

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

  20. Comparison of pinniped and cetacean prey tissue lipids with lipids of their elasmobranch predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davidson, Bruce; Cliff, Geremy

    2014-01-01

    The great white shark is known to include pinnipeds and cetaceans in its diet. Both groups of marine mammals deposit thick blubber layers around their bodies. Elasmobranchs do not produce adipose tissue, but rather store lipid in their livers, thus a great white predating on a marine mammal will deposit the lipids in its liver until required. Samples from great white liver and muscle, Cape fur seal, Indian Ocean bottlenose dolphin and common dolphin liver, muscle and blubber were analyzed for their lipid and fatty acid profiles. The great white liver and marine mammal blubber samples showed a considerable degree of homogeneity, but there were significant differences when comparing between the muscle samples. Blubber from all three marine mammal species was calculated to provide greater than 95% of lipid intake for the great white shark from the tissues analyzed. Sampling of prey blubber may give a good indication of the lipids provided to the shark predator.

  1. Almost Periodic Solutions of Prey-Predator Discrete Models with Delay

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tomomi Itokazu

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this article is to investigate the existence of almost periodic solutions of a system of almost periodic Lotka-Volterra difference equations which are a prey-predator system x1(n+1=x1(nexp⁡{b1(n−a1(nx1(n−c2(n∑s=−∞nK2(n−sx2(s}, x2(n+1=x2(nexp⁡{−b2(n−a2(nx2(n+c1(n∑s=−∞nK1(n−sx1(s} and a competitive system xi(n+1=xi(nexp⁡{bi(n−aiixi(n−∑j=1,j≠il∑s=−∞nKij(n−sxj(s}, by using certain stability properties, which are referred to as (K,ρ-weakly uniformly asymptotic stable in hull and (K,ρ-totally stable.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Munk, Peter

    1992-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alan Marsh

    2014-06-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. G. L Mills

    1984-12-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. Vanitha

    2009-07-01

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

  6. Sperm whale predator-prey interactions involve chasing and buzzing, but no acoustic stunning

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fais, Andrea; Johnson, M.; Wilson, Maria

    2016-01-01

    The sperm whale carries a hypertrophied nose that generates powerful clicks for long-range echolocation. However, it remains a conundrum how this bizarrely shaped apex predator catches its prey. Several hypotheses have been advanced to propose both active and passive means to acquire prey......, including acoustic debilitation of prey with very powerful clicks. Here we test these hypotheses by using sound and movement recording tags in a fine-scale study of buzz sequences to relate the acoustic behaviour of sperm whales with changes in acceleration in their head region during prey capture attempts....... We show that in the terminal buzz phase, sperm whales reduce inter-click intervals and estimated source levels by 1-2 orders of magnitude. As a result, received levels at the prey are more than an order of magnitude below levels required for debilitation, precluding acoustic stunning to facilitate...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walzer, Andreas; Schausberger, Peter

    2013-05-01

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

  8. Interactions between walleyes and smallmouth bass in a Missouri River reservoir with consideration of the influence of temperature and prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wuellner, Melissa R.; Chipps, Steven R.; Willis, David W.; Adams, Wells E.

    2010-01-01

    Walleyes Sander vitreus are the most popular fish among South Dakota anglers, but smallmouth bass Micropterus dolomieu were introduced to provide new angling opportunities. Some walleye anglers have reported reductions in the quality of walleye fisheries since the introduction of smallmouth bass and attribute this to the consumption of young walleyes by smallmouth bass and competition for shared prey resources. We quantified the diets of walleyes and smallmouth bass in the lower reaches of Lake Sharpe (a Missouri River reservoir), calculated the diet overlap between the two predators, and determined whether they partitioned shared prey based on size. We also quantified walleye diets in the upper reach of the reservoir, which has a different prey base and allowed us to compare the growth rates of walleyes within Lake Sharpe. Age-0 gizzard shad Dorosoma cepedianum composed a substantial proportion of the diets of both predators, regardless of location, for most of the growing season; the patterns in shad vulnerability appeared to drive the observed patterns in diet overlap. Smallmouth bass appeared to consume a smaller size range of gizzard shad than did walleyes, which consumed a wide range. Smallmouth bass consumed Sander spp. in some months, but in very low quantities. Given that global climate change is expected to alter the population and community dynamics in Great Plains reservoirs, we also used a bioenergetics approach to predict the potential effects of limiting prey availability (specifically, the absence of gizzard shad and rainbow smelt Osmerus mordax) and increased water temperatures (as projected from global climate change models) on walleye and smallmouth bass growth. The models indicated that the absence of rainbow smelt from the diets of walleyes in upper Lake Sharpe would reduce growth but that the absence of gizzard shad would have a more marked negative effect on both predators at both locations. The models also indicated that higher

  9. Euphausia mucronata: A keystone herbivore and prey of the Humboldt Current System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antezana, Tarsicio

    2010-04-01

    Euphausiids are important components of many ecosystems, especially in productive regions of temperate and high latitudes. The present paper makes the case that E. mucronata plays a keystone role in the food web of the Humboldt Current System (HCS) based on a synthesis of new and published data supporting its potential role as a primary grazer, as well as a principal prey for upper trophic level fish. E. mucronata is an endemic species, concentrated in the coastal upwelling belt of the HCS, with morpho-physiological adaptations to vertically migrate into the Oxygen Minimum Zone (OMZ). Within the 100-km coastal belt of the HCS it accounts for ca. 50% of the meso zooplankton wet weight in winter. In the mixed layer, it is a herbivore with high night ingestion rates (612.2 ng Chl eq ind -1 h -1 or 1013.9 μg C ind -1 d -1, in winter), and accounted for a 19.3% impact on primary production in winter, at an intermediate population abundance (3.8 ind m -3). At higher abundances (50 ind m -3) equivalent to swarms, impact on primary production could reach 254%. Additionally E. mucronata is a common prey of numerous upper trophic level predators. The diet of jack mackerel ( Trachurus murphyi) off central Chile (34-39°S) indicates a striking dependence on E. mucronata prey (average of 75% of stomach content in weight). The fishing season off central Chile extended from austral fall (March-April) and continued at least until the end of austral winter (September). The average daily ration of jack mackerel was 17.4 g, which is equivalent to 2.3% of fish body weight per day. The total E. mucronata consumed in 1991 by the landed population of fish (3.7 million tons yr -1) amounted to 23.2 million tons yr -1. The total estimated population of jack mackerel that year (17.6 million tons) would have consumed ca. 110.2 million tons of E. mucronata. Based on stomach contents, consumption of E. mucronata by other nektonic predators off Chile and off Peru is also outstanding. Four

  10. Predators or prey? Spatio-temporal discrimination of human-derived risk by brown bears.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ordiz, Andrés; Støen, Ole-Gunnar; Delibes, Miguel; Swenson, Jon E

    2011-05-01

    Prey usually adjust anti-predator behavior to subtle variations in perceived risk. However, it is not clear whether adult large carnivores that are virtually free of natural predation adjust their behavior to subtle variations in human-derived risk, even when living in human-dominated landscapes. As a model, we studied resting-site selection by a large carnivore, the brown bear (Ursus arctos), under different spatial and temporal levels of human activity. We quantified horizontal and canopy cover at 440 bear beds and 439 random sites at different distances from human settlements, seasons, and times of the day. We hypothesized that beds would be more concealed than random sites and that beds would be more concealed in relation to human-derived risk. Although human densities in Scandinavia are the lowest within bear ranges in Western Europe, we found an effect of human activity; bears chose beds with higher horizontal and canopy cover during the day (0700-1900 hours), especially when resting closer to human settlements, than at night (2200-0600 hours). In summer/fall (the berry season), with more intensive and dispersed human activity, including hunting, bears rested further from human settlements during the day than in spring (pre-berry season). Additionally, day beds in the summer/fall were the most concealed. Large carnivores often avoid humans at a landscape scale, but total avoidance in human-dominated areas is not possible. Apparently, bears adjust their behavior to avoid human encounters, which resembles the way prey avoid their predators. Bears responded to fine-scale variations in human-derived risk, both on a seasonal and a daily basis.

  11. Differential movement patterns of juvenile Tengmalms owls (Aegolius funereus during the post-fledging dependence period in two years with contrasting prey abundance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marek Kouba

    Full Text Available Fledgling behaviour and movement patterns throughout the post-fledging dependence period (PFDP, especially in relation to changing environmental conditions, have been rarely studied, despite the fact that this period is recognized as of crucial significance in terms of high mortality of juveniles. The PFDP can extend over quite a protracted period, particularly in birds of prey, and a knowledge of the movement patterns of individuals is fundamental for understanding mechanisms underlying survival, habitat use and dispersion. We radiotracked 39 fledglings of the Tengmalm's owl (Aegolius funereus in two years with different availability of prey: 2010 (n = 29 and 2011 (n = 10 and obtained 1455 daily locations. Fledglings reached independence on average in 45 days after fledging in 2010 (n = 22 and 57 days in 2011 (n = 6. Within years, the most important measures influencing the distance moved from the nest box were age of fledglings and number of surviving siblings present. Individual home range size and duration of PFDP in particular were dependent on maximal number of siblings seen outside the nest box. In the season with low prey availability fledglings were observed at greater distances from the nest box than in the year with higher prey availability (mean distance: 350 m in 2010 and 650 m in 2011 and occupied larger home ranges (mean: 30.3 ha in 2010 and 57.7 ha in 2011. The main factor causing these differences between years was probably the different availability of prey in these two years, affecting breeding success and post-fledging survivorship of the Tengmalm's owls.

  12. When hawks attack: animal-borne video studies of goshawk pursuit and prey-evasion strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kane, Suzanne Amador; Fulton, Andrew H.; Rosenthal, Lee J.

    2015-01-01

    Video filmed by a camera mounted on the head of a Northern Goshawk (Accipiter gentilis) was used to study how the raptor used visual guidance to pursue prey and land on perches. A combination of novel image analysis methods and numerical simulations of mathematical pursuit models was used to determine the goshawk's pursuit strategy. The goshawk flew to intercept targets by fixing the prey at a constant visual angle, using classical pursuit for stationary prey, lures or perches, and usually using constant absolute target direction (CATD) for moving prey. Visual fixation was better maintained along the horizontal than vertical direction. In some cases, we observed oscillations in the visual fix on the prey, suggesting that the goshawk used finite-feedback steering. Video filmed from the ground gave similar results. In most cases, it showed goshawks intercepting prey using a trajectory consistent with CATD, then turning rapidly to attack by classical pursuit; in a few cases, it showed them using curving non-CATD trajectories. Analysis of the prey's evasive tactics indicated that only sharp sideways turns caused the goshawk to lose visual fixation on the prey, supporting a sensory basis for the surprising frequency and effectiveness of this tactic found by previous studies. The dynamics of the prey's looming image also suggested that the goshawk used a tau-based interception strategy. We interpret these results in the context of a concise review of pursuit–evasion in biology, and conjecture that some prey deimatic ‘startle’ displays may exploit tau-based interception. PMID:25609783

  13. Prey capture by the crab spider Misumena calycina (Araneae: Thomisidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morse, Douglass H

    1979-01-01

    Crab spiders Misumena calycina (L.) in pasture rose Rosa carolina flowers regularly attacked bumble bees, smaller bees, and syrphid flies that visited these flowers. Attacks reached a maximum rate of over 20/h during mid morning, but only 1.6% of the most important prey item, bumble bees, were captured. The next most important food source, the most frequently taken item, syrphid flies Toxomerus marginatus (Say), were captured in 39% of the attempts. Since these flies have a biomass only 1/60th that of bumble bees, they comprised a much less important food source than did bumble bees. Spiders would obtain over 7% more food by specializing on bumble bees than by attacking all insect visitors, and as much as 20% more food at certain times of the day. However, they did not show a tendency to specialize at any time.

  14. Baleen whales and their prey in a coastal environment

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1989-01-01

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

  15. Interactive effects of prey and weather on golden eagle reproduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steenhof, Karen; Kochert, Michael N.; McDonald, T.L.

    1997-01-01

    1. The reproduction of the golden eagle Aquila chrysaetos was studied in southwestern Idaho for 23 years, and the relationship between eagle reproduction and jackrabbit Lepus californicus abundance, weather factors, and their interactions, was modelled using general linear models. Backward elimination procedures were used to arrive at parsimonious models.2. The number of golden eagle pairs occupying nesting territories each year showed a significant decline through time that was unrelated to either annual rabbit abundance or winter severity. However, eagle hatching dates were significantly related to both winter severity and jackrabbit abundance. Eagles hatched earlier when jackrabbits were abundant, and they hatched later after severe winters.3. Jackrabbit abundance influenced the proportion of pairs that laid eggs, the proportion of pairs that were successful, mean brood size at fledging, and the number of young fledged per pair. Weather interacted with prey to influence eagle reproductive rates.4. Both jackrabbit abundance and winter severity were important in predicting the percentage of eagle pairs that laid eggs. Percentage laying was related positively to jackrabbit abundance and inversely related to winter severity.5. The variables most useful in predicting percentage of laying pairs successful were rabbit abundance and the number of extremely hot days during brood-rearing. The number of hot days and rabbit abundance were also significant in a model predicting eagle brood size at fledging. Both success and brood size were positively related to jackrabbit abundance and inversely related to the frequency of hot days in spring.6. Eagle reproduction was limited by rabbit abundance during approximately twothirds of the years studied. Weather influenced how severely eagle reproduction declined in those years.7. This study demonstrates that prey and weather can interact to limit a large raptor population's productivity. Smaller raptors could be affected more

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2012-01-01

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

  17. Feeding ecology informs parasite epidemiology: prey selection modulates encounter rate with Echinococcus multilocularis in urban coyotes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liccioli, Stefano; Bialowas, Carly; Ruckstuhl, Kathreen E; Massolo, Alessandro

    2015-01-01

    We investigated the role of urban coyote feeding ecology in the transmission of Echinococcus multilocularis, the causative agent of Alveolar Echinococcosis in humans. As coyotes can play a main role in the maintenance of this zoonotic parasite within North American urban settings, such study can ultimately aid disease risk management. Between June 2012 and June 2013, we collected 251 coyote feces and conducted trapping of small mammals (n = 971) in five parks in the city of Calgary, Alberta, Canada. We investigated E. multilocularis epidemiology by assessing seasonal variations of coyote diet and the selective consumption of different rodent intermediate host species. Furthermore, accounting for small mammal digestibility and coyote defecation rates we estimated the number of small mammal preys ingested by coyote and consequently, coyote encounter rates with the parasite. Dominant food items included small mammals, fruit and vegetation, although hare and deer were seasonally relevant. The lowest frequency of occurrence per scat of small mammals was recorded in winter (39.4%), when consumption of deer was highest (36.4%). However, highest encounter rates (number of infected hosts predated/season) with E. multilocularis (95% CI: 1.0-22.4), combined with the lack of predation on non-competent small mammal species, suggest that winter is the critical season for transmission and control of this parasite. Within the small mammal assemblage, voles (Microtus pennsylvanicus and Myodes gapperi) were the selected preys of urban coyotes and likely played a key role for the maintenance of the urban sylvatic life-cycle of E. multilocularis in Calgary.

  18. Feeding ecology informs parasite epidemiology: prey selection modulates encounter rate with Echinococcus multilocularis in urban coyotes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefano Liccioli

    Full Text Available We investigated the role of urban coyote feeding ecology in the transmission of Echinococcus multilocularis, the causative agent of Alveolar Echinococcosis in humans. As coyotes can play a main role in the maintenance of this zoonotic parasite within North American urban settings, such study can ultimately aid disease risk management. Between June 2012 and June 2013, we collected 251 coyote feces and conducted trapping of small mammals (n = 971 in five parks in the city of Calgary, Alberta, Canada. We investigated E. multilocularis epidemiology by assessing seasonal variations of coyote diet and the selective consumption of different rodent intermediate host species. Furthermore, accounting for small mammal digestibility and coyote defecation rates we estimated the number of small mammal preys ingested by coyote and consequently, coyote encounter rates with the parasite. Dominant food items included small mammals, fruit and vegetation, although hare and deer were seasonally relevant. The lowest frequency of occurrence per scat of small mammals was recorded in winter (39.4%, when consumption of deer was highest (36.4%. However, highest encounter rates (number of infected hosts predated/season with E. multilocularis (95% CI: 1.0-22.4, combined with the lack of predation on non-competent small mammal species, suggest that winter is the critical season for transmission and control of this parasite. Within the small mammal assemblage, voles (Microtus pennsylvanicus and Myodes gapperi were the selected preys of urban coyotes and likely played a key role for the maintenance of the urban sylvatic life-cycle of E. multilocularis in Calgary.

  19. 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.

  20. The predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis adjusts patch-leaving to own and progeny prey needs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanas, V; Enigl, M; Walzer, A; Schausberger, P

    2006-01-01

    Integration of optimal foraging and optimal oviposition theories suggests that predator females should adjust patch leaving to own and progeny prey needs to maximize current and future reproductive success. We tested this hypothesis in the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis and its patchily distributed prey, the two-spotted spider mite Tetranychus urticae. In three separate experiments we assessed (1) the minimum number of prey needed to complete juvenile development, (2) the minimum number of prey needed to produce an egg, and (3) the ratio between eggs laid and spider mites left when a gravid P. persimilis female leaves a patch. Experiments (1) and (2) were the pre-requirements to assess the fitness costs associated with staying or leaving a prey patch. Immature P. persimilis needed at least 7 and on average 14+/-3.6 (SD) T. urticae eggs to reach adulthood. Gravid females needed at least 5 and on average 8.5+/-3.1 (SD) T. urticae eggs to produce an egg. Most females left the initial patch before spider mite extinction, leaving prey for progeny to develop to adulthood. Females placed in a low density patch left 5.6+/-6.1 (SD) eggs per egg laid, whereas those placed in a high density patch left 15.8+/-13.7 (SD) eggs per egg laid. The three experiments in concert suggest that gravid P. persimilis females are able to balance the trade off between optimal foraging and optimal oviposition and adjust patch-leaving to own and progeny prey needs.

  1. Adaptive evolution of defense ability leads to diversification of prey species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zu, Jian; Wang, Jinliang; Du, Jianqiang

    2014-06-01

    In this paper, by using the adaptive dynamics approach, we investigate how the adaptive evolution of defense ability promotes the diversity of prey species in an initial one-prey-two-predator community. We assume that the prey species can evolve to a safer strategy such that it can reduce the predation risk, but a prey with a high defense ability for one predator may have a low defense ability for the other and vice versa. First, by using the method of critical function analysis, we find that if the trade-off is convex in the vicinity of the evolutionarily singular strategy, then this singular strategy is a continuously stable strategy. However, if the trade-off is weakly concave near the singular strategy and the competition between the two predators is relatively weak, then the singular strategy may be an evolutionary branching point. Second, we find that after the branching has occurred in the prey strategy, if the trade-off curve is globally concave, then the prey species might eventually evolve into two specialists, each caught by only one predator species. However, if the trade-off curve is convex-concave-convex, the prey species might eventually branch into two partial specialists, each being caught by both of the two predators and they can stably coexist on the much longer evolutionary timescale.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

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

  3. Global warming alters sound transmission: differential impact on the prey detection ability of echolocating bats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, Jinhong; Koselj, Klemen; Zsebők, Sándor; Siemers, Björn M.; Goerlitz, Holger R.

    2014-01-01

    Climate change impacts the biogeography and phenology of plants and animals, yet the underlying mechanisms are little known. Here, we present a functional link between rising temperature and the prey detection ability of echolocating bats. The maximum distance for echo-based prey detection is physically determined by sound attenuation. Attenuation is more pronounced for high-frequency sound, such as echolocation, and is a nonlinear function of both call frequency and ambient temperature. Hence, the prey detection ability, and thus possibly the foraging efficiency, of echolocating bats and susceptible to rising temperatures through climate change. Using present-day climate data and projected temperature rises, we modelled this effect for the entire range of bat call frequencies and climate zones around the globe. We show that depending on call frequency, the prey detection volume of bats will either decrease or increase: species calling above a crossover frequency will lose and species emitting lower frequencies will gain prey detection volume, with crossover frequency and magnitude depending on the local climatic conditions. Within local species assemblages, this may cause a change in community composition. Global warming can thus directly affect the prey detection ability of individual bats and indirectly their interspecific interactions with competitors and prey. PMID:24335559

  4. Global warming alters sound transmission: differential impact on the prey detection ability of echolocating bats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, Jinhong; Koselj, Klemen; Zsebok, Sándor; Siemers, Björn M; Goerlitz, Holger R

    2014-02-06

    Climate change impacts the biogeography and phenology of plants and animals, yet the underlying mechanisms are little known. Here, we present a functional link between rising temperature and the prey detection ability of echolocating bats. The maximum distance for echo-based prey detection is physically determined by sound attenuation. Attenuation is more pronounced for high-frequency sound, such as echolocation, and is a nonlinear function of both call frequency and ambient temperature. Hence, the prey detection ability, and thus possibly the foraging efficiency, of echolocating bats and susceptible to rising temperatures through climate change. Using present-day climate data and projected temperature rises, we modelled this effect for the entire range of bat call frequencies and climate zones around the globe. We show that depending on call frequency, the prey detection volume of bats will either decrease or increase: species calling above a crossover frequency will lose and species emitting lower frequencies will gain prey detection volume, with crossover frequency and magnitude depending on the local climatic conditions. Within local species assemblages, this may cause a change in community composition. Global warming can thus directly affect the prey detection ability of individual bats and indirectly their interspecific interactions with competitors and prey.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Serena Hackerott

    2017-05-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hanlie E.K. Winterbach

    2015-07-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Changku eKang

    2016-04-01

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

  10. Spiny Prey, Fortunate Prey. Dorsal Spines Are an Asset in Intraguild Interactions among Lady Beetles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Louis Hautier

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The Multicolored Asian Ladybird, Harmonia axyridis, is an extremely successful invasive species. Here we suggest that, in addition to many other traits, the dorsal spines of its larvae contribute to their success, as suggested by behavioral observations of agonistic interactions between H. axyridis and European coccinellids. In coccinellids, the role of dorsal spines in these interactions has been poorly studied and they could be a physical protection against intraguild predators. Dorsal spines of second instar H. axyridis larvae were removed with micro-scissors, which resulted in spineless larvae after molting (spineless group. These larvae were then exposed to starved Coccinella septempunctata larvae. Two control categories were also submitted to interactions: H. axyridis larvae with all their spines (control group and with their spines, but injured by pin stings (injured group. Spine removal at the second instar did not hamper H. axyridis development. The bite rate by C. septempunctata was significantly higher on the spineless H. axyridis and more dorsally located compared to the control and injured groups, while no bite rate difference was observed between the injured and the control group. Our results suggest that in addition to behavioral and chemical defenses, the dorsal spines play a significant protective role against bites. Therefore, spines in ladybirds could be considered as a morphological defense against intraguild predation. In H. axyridis, these defenses might contribute to its success in food resources already exploited by other guild members and thus further facilitate the invasion of new areas.

  11. Modelling the dynamics of traits involved in fighting-predators-prey system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kooi, B W

    2015-12-01

    We study the dynamics of a predator-prey system where predators fight for captured prey besides searching for and handling (and digestion) of the prey. Fighting for prey is modelled by a continuous time hawk-dove game dynamics where the gain depends on the amount of disputed prey while the costs for fighting is constant per fighting event. The strategy of the predator-population is quantified by a trait being the proportion of the number of predator-individuals playing hawk tactics. The dynamics of the trait is described by two models of adaptation: the replicator dynamics (RD) and the adaptive dynamics (AD). In the RD-approach a variant individual with an adapted trait value changes the population's strategy, and consequently its trait value, only when its payoff is larger than the population average. In the AD-approach successful replacement of the resident population after invasion of a rare variant population with an adapted trait value is a step in a sequence changing the population's strategy, and hence its trait value. The main aim is to compare the consequences of the two adaptation models. In an equilibrium predator-prey system this will lead to convergence to a neutral singular strategy, while in the oscillatory system to a continuous singular strategy where in this endpoint the resident population is not invasible by any variant population. In equilibrium (low prey carrying capacity) RD and AD-approach give the same results, however not always in a periodically oscillating system (high prey carrying-capacity) where the trait is density-dependent. For low costs the predator population is monomorphic (only hawks) while for high costs dimorphic (hawks and doves). These results illustrate that intra-specific trait dynamics matters in predator-prey dynamics.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tyler E Schartel

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

  13. An adaptable but threatened big cat: density, diet and prey selection of the Indochinese leopard (Panthera pardus delacouri) in eastern Cambodia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rostro-García, Susana; Kamler, Jan F; Crouthers, Rachel; Sopheak, Keo; Prum, Sovanna; In, Visattha; Pin, Chanratana; Caragiulo, Anthony; Macdonald, David W

    2018-02-01

    We studied the Indochinese leopard ( Panthera pardus delacouri ) in eastern Cambodia, in one of the few potentially remaining viable populations in Southeast Asia. The aims were to determine the: (i) current leopard density in Srepok Wildlife Sanctuary (SWS) and (ii) diet, prey selection and predation impact of leopard in SWS. The density, estimated using spatially explicit capture-recapture models, was 1.0 leopard/100 km 2 , 72% lower than an estimate from 2009 at the same site, and one of the lowest densities ever reported in Asia. Dietary analysis of 73 DNA confirmed scats showed leopard consumed 13 prey species, although ungulates comprised 87% of the biomass consumed (BC). The overall main prey (42% BC) was banteng ( Bos javanicus ), making this the only known leopard population whose main prey had adult weight greater than 500 kg. Consumption of wild pig ( Sus scrofa ) was also one of the highest ever reported (22% BC), indicating leopard consistently predated on ungulates with some of the largest adult weights in SWS. There were important differences in diet and prey selection between sexes, as males consumed mostly banteng (62% BC) in proportion to availability, but few muntjac ( Muntiacus vaginalis ; 7% BC), whereas females selectively consumed muntjac (56% BC) and avoided banteng (less than 1% BC). Predation impact was low (0.5-3.2% of populations) for the three ungulate species consumed. We conclude that the Indochinese leopard is an important apex predator in SWS, but this unique population is declining at an alarming rate and will soon be eradicated unless effective protection is provided.

  14. Great lakes prey fish populations: a cross-basin overview of status and trends based on bottom trawl surveys, 1978-2012

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorman, Owen T.

    2012-01-01

    The assessment of prey fish stocks in the Great Lakes have been conducted annually with bottom trawls since the 1970s by the Great Lakes Science Center, sometimes assisted by partner agencies. These stock assessments provide data on the status and trends of prey fish that are consumed by important commercial and recreational fishes. Although all these annual surveys are conducted using bottom trawls, they differ among the lakes in the proportion of the lake covered, seasonal timing, bottom trawl gear used, and the manner in which the trawl is towed (across or along bottom contours). Because each assessment is unique in one or more important aspects, direct comparison of prey fish catches among lakes is not straightforward. However, all of the assessments produce indices of abundance or biomass that can be standardized to facilitate comparisons of status and trends across all the Great Lakes. In this report, population indices were standardized to the highest value for a time series within each lake for the following principal prey species: cisco (Coregonus artedi), bloater (C. hoyi), rainbow smelt (Osmerus mordax), and alewife (Alosa pseudoharengus). Indices were also provided for round goby (Neogobius melanostomus), an invasive fish that has proliferated throughout the basin over the past 18 years. These standardized indices represent the best available long-term indices of relative abundance for these fishes across all of the Great Lakes. In this report, standardized indices are presented in graphical form along with synopses to provide a short, informal cross-basin summary of the status and trends of principal prey fishes. In keeping with this intent, tables, references, and a detailed discussion were omitted.

  15. The predator-prey models for the mechanism of autocatalysis, pair wise interactions and movements to free places

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Muhammad Shakil

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we aim to develop the modeled equations for different types of mechanism of the predator-prey interactions with the help of a quasi chemical approach while taking a special study case of foxes and rabbits, these mechanisms include autocatalysis mechanism, pair wise interactions and the mechanism of their movements to some free places. The chemical reactions representing the interactions obey the mass action law. The territorial animal like fox is assigned a simple cell as its territory. Under the proper relations between coefficients, this system may demonstrate globally stable dynamics.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Navalpotro, H.; Pagani-Nuñez, E.; Hernandez-Gomez, S.; Senar, J.C.

    2016-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Navalpotro, H.

    2016-04-01

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

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Navalpotro, H.; Pagani-Nuñez, E.; Hernandez-Gomez, S.; Senar, J.C.

    2016-07-01

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

  19. Survival probability of Baltic larval cod in relation to spatial overlap patterns with their prey obtained from drift model studies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hinrichsen, H.H.; Schmidt, J.O.; Petereit, C.

    2005-01-01

    Temporal mismatch between the occurrence of larvae and their prey potentially affects the spatial overlap and thus the contact rates between predator and prey. This might have important consequences for growth and survival. We performed a case study investigating the influence of circulation......-prey overlap, dependent on the hatching time of cod larvae. By performing model runs for the years 1979-1998 investigated the intra- and interannual variability of potential spatial overlap between predator and prey. Assuming uniform prey distributions, we generally found the overlap to have decreased since...

  20. Pattern formation induced by cross-diffusion in a predator–prey system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sun Guiquan; Jin Zhen; Liu Quanxing; Li Li

    2008-01-01

    This paper considers the Holling–Tanner model for predator–prey with self and cross-diffusion. From the Turing theory, it is believed that there is no Turing pattern formation for the equal self-diffusion coefficients. However, combined with cross-diffusion, it shows that the system will exhibit spotted pattern by both mathematical analysis and numerical simulations. Furthermore, asynchrony of the predator and the prey in the space. The obtained results show that cross-diffusion plays an important role on the pattern formation of the predator–prey system. (general)

  1. Prey Preferences of the Snow Leopard (Panthera uncia): Regional Diet Specificity Holds Global Significance for Conservation

    OpenAIRE

    Lyngdoh, Salvador; Shrotriya, Shivam; Goyal, Surendra P.; Clements, Hayley; Hayward, Matthew W.; Habib, Bilal

    2014-01-01

    The endangered snow leopard is a large felid that is distributed over 1.83 million km(2) globally. Throughout its range it relies on a limited number of prey species in some of the most inhospitable landscapes on the planet where high rates of human persecution exist for both predator and prey. We reviewed 14 published and 11 unpublished studies pertaining to snow leopard diet throughout its range. We calculated prey consumption in terms of frequency of occurrence and biomass consumed based o...

  2. Using insect traps to increase weaver ant (Oecophylla longinoda) prey capture

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lynegaard, Gina; Offenberg, Joachim; Fast, Thora

    2014-01-01

    Weaver ants (Oecophylla spp.) are managed in plantations to control insect pests and are sometimes harvested as a protein rich food source. In both cases, the amount of insect prey caught by the ants is imperative for returns, as more prey leads to more effective biocontrol and to a higher...... by O. longinoda under natural conditions (without traps), potentially increasing to 14% if ants learn to extract all insects. Thus, prey intake may be increased with 5-14% per 3.9 USD invested in traps. These numbers increased to 38 and 78%, respectively, when light was used to attract insects during...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bertrand H Lemasson

    2016-02-01

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

  5. 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.

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

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    Ludmilla Moura de Souza Aguiar

    2012-04-01

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

  7. Embedding recurrent neural networks into predator-prey models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreau, Yves; Louiès, Stephane; Vandewalle, Joos; Brenig, Leon

    1999-03-01

    We study changes of coordinates that allow the embedding of ordinary differential equations describing continuous-time recurrent neural networks into differential equations describing predator-prey models-also called Lotka-Volterra systems. We transform the equations for the neural network first into quasi-monomial form (Brenig, L. (1988). Complete factorization and analytic solutions of generalized Lotka-Volterra equations. Physics Letters A, 133(7-8), 378-382), where we express the vector field of the dynamical system as a linear combination of products of powers of the variables. In practice, this transformation is possible only if the activation function is the hyperbolic tangent or the logistic sigmoid. From this quasi-monomial form, we can directly transform the system further into Lotka-Volterra equations. The resulting Lotka-Volterra system is of higher dimension than the original system, but the behavior of its first variables is equivalent to the behavior of the original neural network. We expect that this transformation will permit the application of existing techniques for the analysis of Lotka-Volterra systems to recurrent neural networks. Furthermore, our results show that Lotka-Volterra systems are universal approximators of dynamical systems, just as are continuous-time neural networks.

  8. Recolonizing carnivores and naïve prey: conservation lessons from Pleistocene extinctions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berger, J; Swenson, J E; Persson, I L

    2001-02-09

    The current extinction of many of Earth's large terrestrial carnivores has left some extant prey species lacking knowledge about contemporary predators,