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Sample records for prey species consumed

  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. 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...

  3. 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.

  4. Prey diversity is associated with weaker consumer effects in a meta-analysis of benthic marine experiments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Kyle F; Aquilino, Kristin M; Best, Rebecca J; Sellheim, Kirsten L; Stachowicz, John J

    2010-02-01

    A rapidly accumulating body of research has shown that species diversity consistently affects the functioning of ecosystems. The incorporation of trophic complexity and the extension of this research to larger scales and natural ranges in species diversity remain as important challenges for understanding the true magnitude of these effects in natural systems. Here, we test whether the diversity of prey communities affects the magnitude of aggregate consumer effects. We conducted a meta-analysis of 57 consumer removal field experiments from a range of intertidal and subtidal hard substrate marine communities. We found that the richness of the prey community was the strongest predictor of the magnitude of consumer effects while controlling for habitat type, taxonomic composition, and other variables. Consumer removal increased aggregate prey abundance on average by 1200% at the lower limit of prey diversity (two species), but only 200% at the upper limit of 37 species. Importantly, compositional change was substantial at both high and low prey diversity, suggesting predation intensity did not vary with prey richness. Rather diverse prey communities appear to be more capable of maintaining abundance via compensatory responses, by containing prey species that are resistant to (or tolerant of) predators. These results suggest that the effects of species diversity on trophic interactions may scale consistently from small-scale manipulations to cross-community comparisons.

  5. 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...

  6. Global Behavior for a Strongly Coupled Predator-Prey Model with One Resource and Two Consumers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yujuan Jiao

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available We consider a strongly coupled predator-prey model with one resource and two consumers, in which the first consumer species feeds on the resource according to the Holling II functional response, while the second consumer species feeds on the resource following the Beddington-DeAngelis functional response, and they compete for the common resource. Using the energy estimates and Gagliardo-Nirenberg-type inequalities, the existence and uniform boundedness of global solutions for the model are proved. Meanwhile, the sufficient conditions for global asymptotic stability of the positive equilibrium for this model are given by constructing a Lyapunov function.

  7. 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...

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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%.

  13. 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

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    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

  14. 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.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Smout, Sophie; Rindorf, Anna; Wanless, Sarah

    2013-01-01

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

  16. 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.

  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. Mammal predator and prey species richness are strongly linked at macroscales

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sandom, Christopher James; Dalby, Lars; Fløjgaard, Camilla

    2013-01-01

    Predator–prey interactions play an important role for species composition and community dynamics at local scales, but their importance in shaping large-scale gradients of species richness remains unexplored. Here, we use global range maps, structural equation models (SEM), and comprehensive...... databases of dietary preferences and body masses of all terrestrial, non-volant mammals worldwide, to test whether (1) prey-bottom-up or predator- top-down relationships are important drivers of broad-scale species richness gradients once the environment and human influence has been accounted for, (2...... between them (e.g., large prey to small predators), suggesting that mass-related energetic and physiological constraints influence broad-scale richness links, especially for large-bodied mammals. Overall, our results support the idea that trophic interactions can be important drivers of large...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raimund eApfelbach

    2015-07-01

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

  1. Plastic debris in great skua (Stercorarius skua) pellets corresponds to seabird prey species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammer, S; Nager, R G; Johnson, P C D; Furness, R W; Provencher, J F

    2016-02-15

    Plastic is a common item in marine environments. Studies assessing seabird ingestion of plastics have focused on species that ingest plastics mistaken for prey items. Few studies have examined a scavenger and predatory species that are likely to ingest plastics indirectly through their prey items, such as the great skua (Stercorarius skua). We examined 1034 regurgitated pellets from a great skua colony in the Faroe Islands for plastics and found approximately 6% contained plastics. Pellets containing remains of Northern fulmars (Fulmarus glacialis) had the highest prevalence of plastic. Our findings support previous work showing that Northern fulmars have higher loads of plastics than other sympatric species. This study demonstrates that marine plastic debris is transferred from surface feeding seabird species to predatory great skuas. Examination of plastic ingestion in species that do not ingest plastics directly can provide insights into how plastic particles transfer vertically within the food web. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Growth and grazing responses of two chloroplast-retaining dinoflagellates: effect of irradiance and prey species

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jakobsen, Hans Henrik; Hansen, P.J.; Larsen, J.

    2000-01-01

    The effect of irradiance on growth and grazing responses of 2 phagotrophic dinoflagellates, Gymnodinium gracilentum Campbell 1973 and Amphidinium poecilochroum Larsen 1985, was studied. While G. gracilentum belongs to the plankton, A. poecilochroum is a benthic species that primarily feeds on prey...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

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

  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. The effects of prey size on diet differentiation of seven passerine species at two spring stopover sites

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Marchetti, C.M.; Locatelli, D.P.; Van Noordwijk, A.J.; Baldaccini, N.E.

    1998-01-01

    Prey size was evaluated for seven passerine trans-Saharan migrant species at two spring stopover sites in Sardinia, Italy. The species considered were Pied Flycatcher Ficedula hypoleuca, Spotted Flycatcher Muscicapa striata, Redstart Phoenicurus phoenicurus, Garden Warbler Sylvia borin, Whitethroat

  6. 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.

  7. Species replacement by a nonnative salmonid alters ecosystem function by reducing prey subsidies that support riparian spiders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benjamin, J.R.; Fausch, K.D.; Baxter, C.V.

    2011-01-01

    Replacement of a native species by a nonnative can have strong effects on ecosystem function, such as altering nutrient cycling or disturbance frequency. Replacements may cause shifts in ecosystem function because nonnatives establish at different biomass, or because they differ from native species in traits like foraging behavior. However, no studies have compared effects of wholesale replacement of a native by a nonnative species on subsidies that support consumers in adjacent habitats, nor quantified the magnitude of these effects. We examined whether streams invaded by nonnative brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) in two regions of the Rocky Mountains, USA, produced fewer emerging adult aquatic insects compared to paired streams with native cutthroat trout (Oncorhynchus clarkii), and whether riparian spiders that depend on these prey were less abundant along streams with lower total insect emergence. As predicted, emergence density was 36% lower from streams with the nonnative fish. Biomass of brook trout was higher than the cutthroat trout they replaced, but even after accounting for this difference, emergence was 24% lower from brook trout streams. More riparian spiders were counted along streams with greater total emergence across the water surface. Based on these results, we predicted that brook trout replacement would result in 6-20% fewer spiders in the two regions. When brook trout replace cutthroat trout, they reduce cross-habitat resource subsidies and alter ecosystem function in stream-riparian food webs, not only owing to increased biomass but also because traits apparently differ from native cutthroat trout. ?? 2011 Springer-Verlag.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aladeen Al Basheer

    2017-01-01

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

  12. Aphid secondary symbionts do not affect prey attractiveness to two species of predatory lady beetles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer L Kovacs

    Full Text Available Heritable symbionts have been found to mediate interactions between host species and their natural enemies in a variety of organisms. Aphids, their facultative symbionts, and their potential fitness effects have been particularly well-studied. For example, the aphid facultative symbiont Regiella can protect its host from infection from a fungal pathogen, and aphids with Hamiltonella are less likely to be parasitized by parasitic wasps. Recent work has also found there to be negative fitness effects for the larvae of two species of aphidophagous lady beetles that consumed aphids with facultative symbionts. In both species, larvae that consumed aphids with secondary symbionts were significantly less likely to survive to adulthood. In this study we tested whether adult Harmonia axyridis and Hippodamia convergens lady beetles avoided aphids with symbionts in a series of choice experiments. Adults of both lady beetle species were as likely to choose aphids with symbionts as those without, despite the potential negative fitness effects associated with consuming aphids with facultative symbionts. This may suggest that under natural conditions aphid secondary symbionts are not a significant source of selection for predatory lady beetles.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. Effects of an exotic prey species on a native specialist: example of the snail kite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cattau, Christopher E.; Martin, J.; Kitchens, Wiley M.

    2010-01-01

    Despite acknowledging that exotic species can exhibit tremendous influence over native populations, few case studies have clearly demonstrated the effects of exotic prey species on native predators. We examined the effects of the recently introduced island apple snail (Pomacea insularum) on the foraging behavior and energetics of the endangered snail kite (Rostrhamus sociabilis plumbeus) in Florida. We conducted time-activity budgets: (i) on kites foraging for native Florida apple snails (Pomacea paludosa) in major wetland units within the kites' range that had not been invaded by the exotic island apple snail and (ii) on kites foraging for exotic apple snails in Lake Tohopekaliga, the only major wetland utilized by the snail kite that had suffered a serious invasion of P. insularum. When foraging for P. insularum, snail kites dropped a greater proportion of snails, and they experienced increased handling times and decreased consumption rates; however, kites foraging for P. insularum also spent a smaller proportion of the day in flight. Estimates of net daily energy balances between kites feeding on P. insularum versus P. paludosa were comparable for adults, but juveniles experienced energetic deficiencies when feeding on the exotic snail. Due to this discrepancy, we hypothesize that wetlands invaded by P. insularum, such as Lake Tohopekaliga, may function as ecological traps for the snail kite in Florida by attracting breeding adults but simultaneously depressing juvenile survival. This study highlights the conservation implications and importance of elucidating the effects that exotic species have on native specialists, especially those that are endangered, because subtle influences on behavior may have significant population consequences.

  16. Species selection in secondary wood products: perspectives from different consumers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott A. Bowe; Matthew S. Bumgardner; Matthew S. Bumgardner

    2004-01-01

    This study investigated adult consumer perceptions of several wood species to determine if word-based and appearance-based evaluations differed. The research replicated a 2001 study by the authors, which used undergraduate college students as a proxy for older and more experienced adult furniture consumers. The literature is somewhat inconclusive concerning the extent...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-06-01

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

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2014-01-01

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

  19. 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....

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Salvador Lyngdoh

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

  1. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-03-01

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

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2010-01-01

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

  4. Habitat or prey specialization in predatory ladybird beetles: a case study of two closely related species

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Ferrer, A.; Dixon, Anthony F. G.; Hemptinne, J. L.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 140, č. 3 (2016), s. 199-208 ISSN 0931-2048 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) ED1.1.00/02.0073 Institutional support: RVO:67179843 Keywords : aphids * habitat * ladybirds * prey * reproductive investment * specialization Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 1.641, year: 2016

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Fatty acids in six small pelagic fish species and their crustacean prey from the mindanao sea, southern Philippines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Metillo, Ephrime Bicoy; Aspiras-Eya, Anna Arlene

    2014-08-01

    Fatty acids are important in human health and useful in the analysis of the marine food web, however information on tropical pelagic organisms is scarce. Six zooplanktivorous small pelagic fish species (Decapterus kurroides, Decapterus macarellus, Selar crumenophthalmus, Sardinella lemuru, Spratilloides gracilis and Stolephorus insularis) and four of their zooplanktonic crustacean prey [three sergestoid species (Acetes erythraeus, Acetes intermedius and Lucifer penicillifer) and one calanoid copepod (Acartia erythraea)] were collected from the Mindanao Sea, and their fatty acids were profiled. The resulting profiles revealed 17 fatty acids that were specific to certain species and 9 {myristic acid [C14:0], palmitic acid [C16:0], stearic acid [C18:0]; palmitoleic acid [C16:1], oleic acid [C18:1n9c], linoleic acid [C18:2n6c], linolenic acid [C18:3n3], eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) [C20:5n3] and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) [C22:6n3]} that were common to all species. Cluster analysis and non-metric multidimensional scaling (NMDS) of fatty acids indicate a high similarity in profiles in all species, but separate fish and zooplankton clusters were obtained. Mackerel species (D. macarellus, D. kurroides and S. crumenophthalmus) had concentrations of total n-3 fatty acids that match those of their Acetes prey. The copepod A. erythraea and the sergestoid L. penicillifer exhibited the lowest values of the EPA:DHA ratio, which was most likely due to their phytoplanktivorous feeding habits, but the occurrence of the highest values of the ratio in Acetes suggests the inclusion of plant detritus in their diet. DHA values appear to affirm the trophic link among copepod, Lucifer, Acetes and mackerel species.

  8. Prey consumed by Guiana dolphin Sotalia guianensis (Cetacea, Delphinidae and franciscana dolphin Pontoporia blainvillei (Cetacea, Pontoporiidae in an estuarine environment in southern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marta J. Cremer

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available The present study provides information about the diet of sympatric populations of small cetaceans in the Babitonga Bay estuary. This is the first study on the diet of these species in direct sympatry. The stomach contents of seven Guiana dolphins Sotalia guianensis and eight franciscanas Pontoporia blainvillei were analyzed. The prey of both cetaceans was mostly teleost fishes, followed by cephalopods. We identified 13 teleost fishes as part of the diet of the franciscanas, and 20 as part of the diet of Guiana dolphins. Lolliguncula brevis was the only cephalopod recorded, and was the most important prey for both cetaceans. Stellifer rastrifer and Gobionellus oceanicus were also important for franciscana, so as Mugil curema and Micropogonias furnieri were important for Guiana dolphins. Stellifer rastrifer and Cetengraulis edentulus were the fishes with the highest frequency of occurrence for franciscana (50%, while Achirus lineatus, C. edentulus, S. brasiliensis, Cynoscion leiarchus, M. furnieri, M. curema, Diapterus rhombeus, Eugerres brasilianus and G. oceanicus showed 28.6% of frequency of occurrence for Guiana dolphins. Franciscanas captured greater cephalopods than the Guiana dolphins in both total length (z= -3.38; n= 40; p< 0.05 and biomass (z = -2.46; n = 40; p<0.05. All of the prey species identified occur inside the estuary, which represents a safe habitat against predators and food availability, reinforcing the importance of the Babitonga Bay for these cetacean populations.

  9. Observations on the Nesting and Prey of the Solitary Wasp, Tachysphex inconspicuus, with a Review of Nesting Behavior in the T. obscuripennis species group

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurczewski, Frank E.; Coville, Rollin E.; Schal, Coby

    2010-01-01

    The nesting behaviors of 10 females of Tachysphex inconspicuus (Kirby) (Hymenoptera: Crabronidae) were studied on a sandy, mowed lawn at the La Selva Biological Station in northeastern Costa Rica on 27–29 April 1980. Twenty-four completed nests were observed, excavated, and measured. The nests had oblique, short burrows leading to one or two shallow cells. Prey cockroaches belonging to 11 species of Chorisoneura and Riatia fulgida (Saussure) (Blattaria: Blattellidae), all tropical wet forest canopy indicator species, were removed from the cells, weighed, and identified. The cockroaches consisted mainly of adult females, selectively preyed upon over adult males and nymphs due to their larger sizes. The aggregate prey mass in cells was separable into prospective larger (heavier) female and smaller (lighter) male cells. Wasps usually oviposited on the heaviest cockroach in a cell, in most cases an adult female. Atypical genus behavior included (1) prey being carried to one side of the wasp and perhaps grasped by a hindleg during removal of the temporary entrance closure and nest entry and (2) wasp's egg being laid affixed to a forecoxal corium and extending backward in a longitudinally posteriad position across the prey's ventral thorax. A comparison with the nesting behavior of other species in the Tachysphex obscuripennis species group is made. PMID:21062142

  10. Respuesta dietaria de tres rapaces frente a una presa introducida en Patagonia Dietary response of three raptor species to an introduced prey in Patagonia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ANA L. MONSERRAT

    2005-09-01

    Predators with strong functional responses may be able to help stabilize prey population levels. This is worth noting mainly in the case of introduced prey, whose impact on native ecosystems often involves significant economic and environmental damage. The current Patagonian situation is critical with respect to introduced species. Previous studies have shown that native vertebrate predators are able to change their feeding patterns, switching from native to exotic prey. We assessed the food habits of the grey buzzard-eagle (Geranoaetus melanoleucus, the Magellanic horned owl (Bubo magellanicus, and the red-backed hawk (Buteo polyosoma, the three most important avian predators of the introduced European hare (Lepus europaeus in north-western Patagonia. We analysed 321, 115 and 78 eagle, owl, and hawk pellets respectively. We evaluated their functional responses to hare densities and compared their diets between different sites. Sigmodontine rodents were the hawk's and owl's main prey, followed by the tuco-tuco (Ctenomys spp.. The eagle consumed mainly European hares and then tuco-tucos, showing a significant functional response to the introduced prey. This raptor also had different diets in sites with high and low hare density. The other two raptors did not show a significant functional response to hare densities. However, the hawk's diet varied according to geographic location. We conclude that eagles and hawks are generalist predators, whereas the owl tends to specialize on small mammals. The changes in the eagle's diet in relation to European hare densities provide the potential to contribute to regulate the hare population

  11. Species-specific accumulation of polybrominated diphenyl ether flame retardants in birds of prey from the Chesapeake Bay region, USA

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chen Da, E-mail: chen@vims.ed [Department of Environmental and Aquatic Animal Health, Virginia Institute of Marine Science, College of William and Mary, Gloucester Point, VA 23062 (United States); Hale, Robert C. [Department of Environmental and Aquatic Animal Health, Virginia Institute of Marine Science, College of William and Mary, Gloucester Point, VA 23062 (United States); Watts, Bryan D. [Center for Conservation Biology, College of William and Mary, Williamsburg, VA 23185 (United States); La Guardia, Mark J.; Harvey, Ellen [Department of Environmental and Aquatic Animal Health, Virginia Institute of Marine Science, College of William and Mary, Gloucester Point, VA 23062 (United States); Mojica, Elizabeth K. [Center for Conservation Biology, College of William and Mary, Williamsburg, VA 23185 (United States)

    2010-05-15

    Compared to organochlorines, little is known about polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE) contamination of birds of prey breeding in the Chesapeake Bay, the largest estuary in the U.S. This study examined and compared PBDE contamination in eggs of osprey, double-crested cormorant, brown pelican and peregrine falcon from this area. Several legacy persistent organic pollutants such as PCBs and DDE were also investigated. The level of urbanization of the landscape appeared to influence the level of PBDE exposure. PBDE congener distribution patterns varied between piscivorous and terrestrial-feeding birds. This suggests individual congeners may be subject to differences in bioaccumulation, biomagnification or metabolism in the aquatic and terrestrial food webs. Biomagnification of PBDEs was studied in the Bay aquatic food chains for the first time. A biomagnification factor of 25.1 was estimated for SIGMAPBDEs for the fish - osprey egg food chain. Hazard quotients, applied as a preliminary evaluation, indicated that PBDEs may pose a moderate hazard to ospreys and peregrine falcons through impairment of reproductive performance. - Birds of prey breeding in the Chesapeake Bay (USA) exhibited species-specific PBDE accumulation patterns.

  12. Species-specific accumulation of polybrominated diphenyl ether flame retardants in birds of prey from the Chesapeake Bay region, USA

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen Da; Hale, Robert C.; Watts, Bryan D.; La Guardia, Mark J.; Harvey, Ellen; Mojica, Elizabeth K.

    2010-01-01

    Compared to organochlorines, little is known about polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE) contamination of birds of prey breeding in the Chesapeake Bay, the largest estuary in the U.S. This study examined and compared PBDE contamination in eggs of osprey, double-crested cormorant, brown pelican and peregrine falcon from this area. Several legacy persistent organic pollutants such as PCBs and DDE were also investigated. The level of urbanization of the landscape appeared to influence the level of PBDE exposure. PBDE congener distribution patterns varied between piscivorous and terrestrial-feeding birds. This suggests individual congeners may be subject to differences in bioaccumulation, biomagnification or metabolism in the aquatic and terrestrial food webs. Biomagnification of PBDEs was studied in the Bay aquatic food chains for the first time. A biomagnification factor of 25.1 was estimated for ΣPBDEs for the fish - osprey egg food chain. Hazard quotients, applied as a preliminary evaluation, indicated that PBDEs may pose a moderate hazard to ospreys and peregrine falcons through impairment of reproductive performance. - Birds of prey breeding in the Chesapeake Bay (USA) exhibited species-specific PBDE accumulation patterns.

  13. 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.

  14. Metal concentrations in selected tissues and main prey species of the annulated sea snake (Hydrophis cyanocinctus) in the Hara Protected Area, northeastern coast of the Persian Gulf, Iran

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rezaie-Atagholipour, Mohsen; Riyahi-Bakhtiari, Alireza; Sajjadi, Mirmasoud; Yap, Chee Kong; Ghaffari, Sanaz; Ebrahimi-Sirizi, Zohreh; Ghezellou, Parviz

    2012-01-01

    This study is the first detailed ecotoxicological study of the annulated sea snake, Hydrophis cyanocinctus. Concentrations of lead, cadmium, nickel and vanadium were evaluated in muscle, liver, kidney, skin and blood of the annulated sea snake (H. cyanocinctus) and in the whole bodies of its main prey species (Periophthalmus waltoni and Boleophthalmus dussumieri) in the Hara Protected Area, the Persian Gulf. The mean concentrations of lead and vanadium were highest in the kidney, which identified the kidney as a target organ for metals in sea snakes as it is in other reptilian groups. Mean concentrations of cadmium and nickel were highest in the liver and skin, respectively. Mean cadmium concentrations were significantly higher in the liver compared to prey species, which indicated that prey items may be a source of cadmium for the annulated sea snake in the study area. Data presented here may be considered as a baseline for further ecotoxicological studies in sea snakes.

  15. 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.

  16. Egg fatty acid composition from lake trout fed two Lake Michigan prey fish species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Honeyfield, D.C.; Fitzsimons, J.D.; Tillitt, D.E.; Brown, S.B.

    2009-01-01

    We previously demonstrated that there were significant differences in the egg thiamine content in lake trout Salvelinus namaycush fed two Lake Michigan prey fish (alewife Alosa pseudoharengus and bloater Coregonus hoyi). Lake trout fed alewives produced eggs low in thiamine, but it was unknown whether the consumption of alewives affected other nutritionally important components. In this study we investigated the fatty acid composition of lake trout eggs when females were fed diets that resulted in different egg thiamine concentrations. For 2 years, adult lake trout were fed diets consisting of four combinations of captured alewives and bloaters (100% alewives; 65% alewives, 35% bloaters; 35% alewives, 65% bloaters; and 100% bloaters). The alewife fatty acid profile had higher concentrations of arachidonic acid and total omega-6 fatty acids than the bloater profile. The concentrations of four fatty acids (cis-13, 16-docosadienoic, eicosapentaenoic, docosapentaenoic, and docosahexaenoic acids) were higher in bloaters than in alewives. Although six fatty acid components were higher in lake trout eggs in 2001 than in 2000 and eight fatty acids were lower, diet had no effect on any fatty acid concentration measured in lake trout eggs in this study. Based on these results, it appears that egg fatty acid concentrations differ between years but that the egg fatty acid profile does not reflect the alewife-bloater mix in the diet of adults. The essential fatty acid content of lake trout eggs from females fed alewives and bloaters appears to be physiologically regulated and adequate to meet the requirements of developing embryos.

  17. Stochastic mixed-mode oscillations in a three-species predator-prey model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sadhu, Susmita; Kuehn, Christian

    2018-03-01

    The effect of demographic stochasticity, in the form of Gaussian white noise, in a predator-prey model with one fast and two slow variables is studied. We derive the stochastic differential equations (SDEs) from a discrete model. For suitable parameter values, the deterministic drift part of the model admits a folded node singularity and exhibits a singular Hopf bifurcation. We focus on the parameter regime near the Hopf bifurcation, where small amplitude oscillations exist as stable dynamics in the absence of noise. In this regime, the stochastic model admits noise-driven mixed-mode oscillations (MMOs), which capture the intermediate dynamics between two cycles of population outbreaks. We perform numerical simulations to calculate the distribution of the random number of small oscillations between successive spikes for varying noise intensities and distance to the Hopf bifurcation. We also study the effect of noise on a suitable Poincaré map. Finally, we prove that the stochastic model can be transformed into a normal form near the folded node, which can be linked to recent results on the interplay between deterministic and stochastic small amplitude oscillations. The normal form can also be used to study the parameter influence on the noise level near folded singularities.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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).

  1. Effects of species information and furniture price on consumer preferences for selected woods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matthew Bumgardner; David Nicholls; Geoffrey Donovan

    2007-01-01

    Changing consumer tastes and species availability are influencing the design and manufacture of hardwood products. In addition, the globalization of wood product markets is exposing U.S. consumers to new species. This research evaluates consumer preferences for six domestic wood species--three from the eastern United States and three from the western United States. The...

  2. A Palaearctic migratory raptor species tracks shifting prey availability within its wintering range in the Sahel

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Trierweiler, Christiane; Mullie, Wim C.; Drent, Rudi H.; Exo, Klaus-Michael; Komdeur, Jan; Bairlein, Franz; Harouna, Abdoulaye; de Bakker, Marinus; Koks, Ben J.

    Mid-winter movements of up to several hundreds of kilometres are typical for many migratory bird species wintering in Africa. Unpredictable temporary food concentrations are thought to result in random movements of such birds, whereas resightings and recoveries of marked birds suggest some degree of

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

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

  4. Analysis of a Fishery Model with two competing prey species in the presence of a predator species for Optimal Harvesting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutimin; Khabibah, Siti; Munawwaroh, Dita Anis

    2018-02-01

    A harvesting fishery model is proposed to analyze the effects of the presence of red devil fish population, as a predator in an ecosystem. In this paper, we consider an ecological model of three species by taking into account two competing species and presence of a predator (red devil), the third species, which incorporates the harvesting efforts of each fish species. The stability of the dynamical system is discussed and the existence of biological and bionomic equilibrium is examined. The optimal harvest policy is studied and the solution is derived in the equilibrium case applying Pontryagin's maximal principle. The simulation results is presented to simulate the dynamical behavior of the model and show that the optimal equilibrium solution is globally asymptotically stable. The results show that the optimal harvesting effort is obtained regarding to bionomic and biological equilibrium.

  5. Taxonomic status of Cyathostoma nematodes (Nematoda: Syngaminae parasitizing respiratory tracts of birds of prey and owls in Europe and North America: how many species are there?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kanarek G.

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available So far, the identity of Cyathostoma (Hovorkonema nematodes collected from respiratory tracts of birds of prey (Accipitriformes, Falconiformes and owls (Strigiformes in Europe and North America is extremely inconsistent. Our results, based on analyses of ITS-2 sequences suggest that the Cyathostoma (Hovorkonema nematodes found in the birds of prey and owls from Central Europe and North America probably belong to the same species, C. (Hovorkonema americana Chapin, 1925. We are convinced, that described in recent literature high ITS-2 divergence among C. (Hovorkonema nematodes collected from Europe, has occurred as a result of invalid synonimisation of some C. (Hovorkonema species. In our opinion C. (Hovorkonema americana (typically parasites of tracheae and air sacs of raptors and C. (Hovorkonema variegatum (Creplin, 1849 (typically parasites of tracheae of cranes and storks are valid molecular and morphologically distinct species.

  6. Presence-only Species Distribution Modeling for King Mackerel (Scomberomorus cavalla) and its 31 Prey Species in the Gulf of Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cai, X.; Simons, J.; Carollo, C.; Sterba-Boatwright, B.; Sadovski, A.

    2016-02-01

    Ecosystem based fisheries management has been broadly recognized throughout the world as a way to achieve better conservation. Therefore, there is a strong need for mapping of multi-species interactions or spatial distributions. Species distribution models are widely applied since information regarding the presence of species is usually only available for limited locations due to the high cost of fisheries surveys. Instead of regular presence and absence records, a large proportion of the fisheries survey data have only presence records. This makes the modeling problem one of one-class classification (presence only), which is much more complex than the regular two-class classification (presence/absence). In this study, four different presence-only species distribution algorithms (Bioclim, Domain, Mahal and Maxent) were applied using 13 environmental parameters (e.g., depth, DO, bottom types) as predictors to model the distribution of king mackerel (Scomberomorus cavalla) and its 31 prey species in the Gulf of Mexico (a total of 13625 georeferenced presence records from OBIS and GBIF were used). Five-fold cross validations were applied for each of the 128 (4 algorithms × 32 species) models. Area under curve (AUC) and correlation coefficient (R) were used to evaluate the model performances. The AUC of the models based on these four algorithms were 0.83±0.14, 0.77±0.16, 0.94±0.06 and 0.94±0.06, respectively; while R for the models were 0.47±0.27, 0.43±0.24, 0.27±0.16 and 0.76±0.16, respectively. Post hoc with Tukey's test showed that AUC for the Maxent-based models were significantly (pMexico to help managers better manage related fisheries resources.

  7. 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).

  8. 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

  9. The allometry of prey preferences.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gregor Kalinkat

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

  10. 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.

  11. How does species name affect consumer choice? An analysis and implications for cabinet door marketers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joseph A. Roos; Geof Donovan; David. Nicholls

    2005-01-01

    Consumers choose products based on various tangible and intangible attributes. Previous research has shown that there is a difference between appearance-based and word-based evaluations of wood species. However, little research has been done on how this difference affects consumer choice. This study examined how the presence or absence of a species name affects a...

  12. 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...

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. Residue levels of polychlorobiphenyls,. sigma. DDT, and mercury in bird species commonly preyed upon by the peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus Tunst. ) in Sweden

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lindberg, P.; Odsjoe, T.; Reutergardh, L.

    1985-03-01

    The levels of polychlorobiphenyls (PCBs), ..sigma..DDT, and total mercury were analyzed in samples of common prey species of the peregrine falcon in two falcon territories, one in northern and one in southern Sweden. Resident and herbivorous prey species showed low residue levels, while elevated levels were found in birds feeding on animals in aquatic habitats. According to biomass, waders accounted for most of the mercury and ..sigma..DDT in the diet of the northern falcons, while the black-headed gulls had this role in southern Sweden. During the breeding season, the peregrines in northern Sweden were exposed to significantly higher levels of ..sigma..DDT and Hg than the southern peregrines. The estimated average residue levels (based on breast muscles) in a diet were in northern Sweden 0.26 ppm ..sigma..DDT, 0.47 ppm PCB and 0.20 ppm Hg wet-weight. Corresponding figures for southern Sweden were 0.17 ppm ..sigma..DDT, 0.53 ppm PCB and 0.07 ppm Hg. The organochlorine levels in a sample of peregrine eggs were higher than expected from contaminant levels in the diet. It is possible that the main accumulation of pesticides occurs on wintering grounds in western Europe for the Fennoscandian peregrines.

  16. 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.

  17. Evaluating selected demographic factors related to consumer preferences for furniture from commercial and from underutilized species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    David Nicholls; Matthew Bumgardner

    2007-01-01

    This technical note describes consumer preferences within selected demographic categories in two major Pacific Northwest markets for six domestic wood species. These woods were considered for construction of four furniture pieces. Chi-square tests were performed to determine species preferences based on gender, age, and income. Age and income were statistically...

  18. Evaluating selected demographic factors related to consumer preferences for furniture from commercial and from underutilized species

    Science.gov (United States)

    David Nicholls; Matthew Bumgardner

    2007-01-01

    This technical note describes consumer preferences within selected demographic categories in two major Pacific Northwest markets for six domestic wood species. These woods were considered for construction of four furniture pieces. Chi-square tests were performed to determine species preferences based on gender, age, and income. Age and income were statistically...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-07-01

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

  20. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Würsig Bernd

    2007-08-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emily W Grason

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

  3. New insights in insect prey choice by chimpanzees and gorillas in southeast Cameroon: the role of nutritional value.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deblauwe, Isra; Janssens, Geert P J

    2008-01-01

    The insect diet of chimpanzees and gorillas living at the northern periphery of the Dja Biosphere Reserve in southeast Cameroon and its nutritional contribution is described. We analyzed fecal samples and recorded additional evidence of insectivory. A detailed prey species list is presented for both apes. We carried out nutritional analyses (macronutrients, macro- and micro-minerals) on 11 important and eight nonimportant, but accessible, ant and termite prey species, and estimated the average nutrient intake/day through insects. Although gorillas ate insects more frequently, the average prey biomass intake/day by chimpanzees was twice that by gorillas. The lack of tool-use by gorillas cannot be the main reason for the small overlap of important prey species. Both apes did not seem to consume ant prey for one or more specific nutrients. Also other factors, such as medicinal use, should be considered. Termites, on the other hand, seemed to be selected for particular nutrients. Gorilla intake of the important termite prey, Cubitermes and Thoracotermes, met with estimated iron requirements. Their potential role as antidiarrheal treatment is as yet unclear. Chimpanzee intake of the important termite prey, Macrotermes spp., met with estimated manganese requirements and the protein intake/day (mean: 2 g/d) reached significant values (>20 g/d). To fully understand the importance of nutritional contributions of insects to ape diets in Cameroon, the chemical composition and nutrient intake of fruit and foliage in their diets should be investigated. (c) 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  4. 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…

  5. 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.

  6. 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....

  7. Apparent competition and native consumers exacerbate the strong competitive effect of an exotic plant species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orrock, John L; Dutra, Humberto P; Marquis, Robert J; Barber, Nicholas

    2015-04-01

    Direct and indirect effects can play a key role in invasions, but experiments evaluating both are rare. We examined the roles of direct competition and apparent competition by exotic Amur honeysuckle (Lonicera maackii) by manipulating (1) L. maackii vegetation, (2) presence of L. maackii fruits, and (3) access to plants by small mammals and deer. Direct competition with L. maackii reduced the abundance and richness of native and exotic species, and native consumers significantly reduced the abundance and richness of native species. Although effects of direct competition and consumption were more pervasive, richness of native plants was also reduced through apparent competition, as small-mammal consumers reduced richness only when L. maackii fruits were present. Our experiment reveals the multiple, interactive pathways that affect the success and impact of an invasive exotic plant: exotic plants may directly benefit from reduced attack by native consumers, may directly exert strong competitive effects on native plants, and may also benefit from apparent competition.

  8. Dynamical study of a chaotic predator-prey model with an omnivore

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-khedhairi, A.; Elsadany, A. A.; Elsonbaty, A.; Abdelwahab, A. G.

    2018-01-01

    In this paper, the dynamics and bifurcations of a three-species predator-prey model with an omnivore are further investigated. The food web considered in this work comprises prey, predator and a third species, which consumes the carcasses of the predator along with predation of the original prey. The conditions for existence, uniqueness and continuous dependence on initial conditions for the solution of the model are derived. Analytical and numerical bifurcation studies reveal that the system undergoes transcritical and Hopf bifurcations around its equilibrium points. Further, the Hopf bifurcation curves in the parameters' space along with codimension two bifurcations of equilibrium points and bifurcation of limit cycles that arise in the system are investigated. In particular, the occurrence of generalized Hopf, fold Hopf and Neimarck-Sacker bifurcations is unveiled and illustrates the rich dynamics of the model. Finally, bifurcation diagrams, phase portraits and Lyapunov exponents of the model are presented.

  9. When dinner is dangerous: toxic frogs elicit species-specific responses from a generalist snake predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, Ben; Shine, Richard

    2007-12-01

    In arms races between predators and prey, some evolved tactics are unbeatable by the other player. For example, many types of prey are inedible because they have evolved chemical defenses. In this case, prey death removes any selective advantage of toxicity to the prey but not the selective advantage to a predator of being able to consume the prey. In the absence of effective selection for postmortem persistence of the toxicity then, some chemical defenses probably break down rapidly after prey death. If so, predators can overcome the toxic defense simply by waiting for that breakdown before consuming the prey. Floodplain death adders (Acanthophis praelongus) are highly venomous frog-eating elapid snakes native to northern Australia. Some of the frogs they eat are nontoxic (Litoria nasuta), others produce gluelike mucus when seized by a predator (Limnodynastes convexiusculus), and one species (Litoria dahlii) is dangerously toxic to snakes. Both the glue and the toxin degrade within about 20 min of prey death. Adders deal with these prey types in different and highly stereotyped ways: they consume nontoxic frogs directly but envenomate and release the other taxa, waiting until the chemical defense loses its potency before consuming the prey.

  10. A spatial theory for emergent multiple predator-prey interactions in food webs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Northfield, Tobin D; Barton, Brandon T; Schmitz, Oswald J

    2017-09-01

    Predator-prey interaction is inherently spatial because animals move through landscapes to search for and consume food resources and to avoid being consumed by other species. The spatial nature of species interactions necessitates integrating spatial processes into food web theory and evaluating how predators combine to impact their prey. Here, we present a spatial modeling approach that examines emergent multiple predator effects on prey within landscapes. The modeling is inspired by the habitat domain concept derived from empirical synthesis of spatial movement and interactions studies. Because these principles are motivated by synthesis of short-term experiments, it remains uncertain whether spatial contingency principles hold in dynamical systems. We address this uncertainty by formulating dynamical systems models, guided by core habitat domain principles, to examine long-term multiple predator-prey spatial dynamics. To describe habitat domains, we use classical niche concepts describing resource utilization distributions, and assume species interactions emerge from the degree of overlap between species. The analytical results generally align with those from empirical synthesis and present a theoretical framework capable of demonstrating multiple predator effects that does not depend on the small spatial or temporal scales typical of mesocosm experiments, and help bridge between empirical experiments and long-term dynamics in natural systems.

  11. 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

  12. Species sorting and stoichiometric plasticity control community C:P ratio of first-order aquatic consumers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Teurlincx, Sven; Velthuis, Mandy; Seroka, Dominika; Govaert, Lynn; van Donk, Ellen|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/069838593; Van de Waal, Dedmer B.; Declerck, Steven A. J.

    2017-01-01

    Ecological stoichiometry has proven to be invaluable for understanding consumer response to changes in resource quality. Although interactions between trophic levels occur at the community level, most studies focus on single consumer species. In contrast to individual species, communities may deal

  13. Invasive plant species alters consumer behavior by providing refuge from predation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dutra, Humberto P; Barnett, Kirk; Reinhardt, Jason R; Marquis, Robert J; Orrock, John L

    2011-07-01

    Understanding the effects of invasive plants on native consumers is important because consumer-mediated indirect effects have the potential to alter the dynamics of coexistence in native communities. Invasive plants may promote changes in consumer pressure due to changes in protective cover (i.e., the architectural complexity of the invaded habitat) and in food availability (i.e., subsidies of fruits and seeds). No experimental studies have evaluated the relative interplay of these two effects. In a factorial experiment, we manipulated cover and food provided by the invasive shrub Amur honeysuckle (Lonicera maackii) to evaluate whether this plant alters the foraging activity of native mammals. Using tracking plates to quantify mammalian foraging activity, we found that removal of honeysuckle cover, rather than changes in the fruit resources it provides, reduced the activity of important seed consumers, mice in the genus Peromyscus. Two mesopredators, Procyon lotor and Didelphis virginiana, were also affected. Moreover, we found rodents used L. maackii for cover only on cloudless nights, indicating that the effect of honeysuckle was weather-dependent. Our work provides experimental evidence that this invasive plant species changes habitat characteristics, and in so doing alters the behavior of small- and medium-sized mammals. Changes in seed predator behavior may lead to cascading effects on the seeds that mice consume.

  14. 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.

  15. Preliminarily study on the maximum handling size, prey size and species selectivity of growth hormone transgenic and non-transgenic common carp Cyprinus carpio when foraging on gastropods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Tingbing; Zhang, Lihong; Zhang, Tanglin; Wang, Yaping; Hu, Wei; Olsen, Rolf Eric; Zhu, Zuoyan

    2017-10-01

    The present study preliminarily examined the differences in maximum handling size, prey size and species selectivity of growth hormone transgenic and non-transgenic common carp Cyprinus carpio when foraging on four gastropods species (Bellamya aeruginosa, Radix auricularia, Parafossarulus sinensis and Alocinma longicornis) under laboratory conditions. In the maximum handling size trial, five fish from each age group (1-year-old and 2-year-old) and each genotype (transgenic and non-transgenic) of common carp were individually allowed to feed on B. aeruginosa with wide shell height range. The results showed that maximum handling size increased linearly with fish length, and there was no significant difference in maximum handling size between the two genotypes. In the size selection trial, three pairs of 2-year-old transgenic and non-transgenic carp were individually allowed to feed on three size groups of B. aeruginosa. The results show that the two genotypes of C. carpio favored the small-sized group over the large-sized group. In the species selection trial, three pairs of 2-year-old transgenic and non-transgenic carp were individually allowed to feed on thin-shelled B. aeruginosa and thick-shelled R. auricularia, and five pairs of 2-year-old transgenic and non-transgenic carp were individually allowed to feed on two gastropods species (P. sinensis and A. longicornis) with similar size and shell strength. The results showed that both genotypes preferred thin-shelled Radix auricularia rather than thick-shelled B. aeruginosa, but there were no significant difference in selectivity between the two genotypes when fed on P. sinensis and A. longicornis. The present study indicates that transgenic and non-transgenic C. carpio show similar selectivity of predation on the size- and species-limited gastropods. While this information may be useful for assessing the environmental risk of transgenic carp, it does not necessarily demonstrate that transgenic common carp might

  16. Is It Necessary Managing Carnivores to Reverse the Decline of Endangered Prey Species? Insights from a Removal Experiment of Mesocarnivores to Benefit Demographic Parameters of the Pyrenean Capercaillie.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rubén Moreno-Opo

    Full Text Available Mesopredator control has long been used to alleviate the effect of elevated predation pressure on vulnerable, threatened or valuable species. However, the convenience of using mesopredator controls is technically questionable and scientifically-sound research is therefore required to evaluate the impact of predation on prey case by case. In this study we evaluated the effect of the alteration of terrestrial mesopredator dynamics on the demographic parameters of a relict capercaillie Tetrao urogallus aquitanicus population currently in decline for which the impact of predation has not previously been assessed. We used a six-year mesocarnivore removal experiment (2008-2013 together with seven-years of previous demographic information on capercaillies (1999-2007 within a before-after control-impact (BACI design to evaluate the effect of mesocarnivore removal on capercaillie demographic parameters and on spatial behaviour of the most frequent predatory mesocarnivores of the capercaillie (Martes spp. and red fox Vulpes vulpes. Using a dynamic site-occupancy approach, the reduction of mesocarnivore population levels as a result of removal was clear for marten species, mainly during key months for capercaillie reproduction, but not for the red fox. Our results show that the breeding success of capercaillies was enhanced in areas where carnivores were removed and was inversely related to the occupation level of the studied mesocarnivores, although being only significant for Martes spp. Moreover, capercaillie predation rates were lower and adult survival seemingly higher in treatment during the removal phase. Cost-effective, long-term management interventions to ensure the recovery of this threatened capercaillie population are discussed in the light of the results. At our study area, the decision for implementing predation management should be included within a broader long-term conservation perspective. In this regard, a more feasible and sustainable

  17. 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

  18. Probability of detecting marine predator-prey and species interactions using novel hybrid acoustic transmitter-receiver tags.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laurie L Baker

    Full Text Available Understanding the nature of inter-specific and conspecific interactions in the ocean is challenging because direct observation is usually impossible. The development of dual transmitter/receivers, Vemco Mobile Transceivers (VMT, and satellite-linked (e.g. GPS tags provides a unique opportunity to better understand between and within species interactions in space and time. Quantifying the uncertainty associated with detecting a tagged animal, particularly under varying field conditions, is vital for making accurate biological inferences when using VMTs. We evaluated the detection efficiency of VMTs deployed on grey seals, Halichoerus grypus, off Sable Island (NS, Canada in relation to environmental characteristics and seal behaviour using generalized linear models (GLM to explore both post-processed detection data and summarized raw VMT data. When considering only post-processed detection data, only about half of expected detections were recorded at best even when two VMT-tagged seals were estimated to be within 50-200 m of one another. At a separation of 400 m, only about 15% of expected detections were recorded. In contrast, when incomplete transmissions from the summarized raw data were also considered, the ratio of complete transmission to complete and incomplete transmissions was about 70% for distances ranging from 50-1000 m, with a minimum of around 40% at 600 m and a maximum of about 85% at 50 m. Distance between seals, wind stress, and depth were the most important predictors of detection efficiency. Access to the raw VMT data allowed us to focus on the physical and environmental factors that limit a transceiver's ability to resolve a transmitter's identity.

  19. Prey and plastic ingestion of Pacific Northern Fulmars (Fulmarus glacialis rogersii) from Monterey Bay, California.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donnelly-Greenan, Erica L; Harvey, James T; Nevins, Hannahrose M; Hester, Michelle M; Walker, William A

    2014-08-15

    Marine plastic pollution affects seabirds, including Pacific Northern Fulmars (Fulmarus glacialis rodgersii), that feed at the surface and mistake plastic for prey or incidentally ingest it. Direct and indirect health issues can result, including satiety and possibly leading to inefficient foraging. Our objective was to examine fulmar body condition, identify cephalopod diet to species, enumerate and weigh ingested plastic, and determine if prey number and size were correlated with ingested plastics in beach-cast fulmars wintering in Monterey Bay California (2003, n=178: 2007, n=185). Fulmars consumed mostly Gonatus pyros, G. onyx, and G. californiensis of similar size for both years. We found a significant negative correlation between pectoral muscle index and average size of cephalopod beaks per stomach; a significant increase in plastic categories between 2003 and 2007; and no significant correlation between number and mass of plastic compared with number and size of prey for either year. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. 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....

  1. 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.

  2. Metal contents in common edible fish species and evaluation of potential health risks to consumers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naglaa Farag Soliman

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Objective: To conduct a health risk assessment of some heavy metals attributed to consumption of common edible fish species available for consumers. Methods: Concentrations of Cd, Cr, Cu, Fe, Mn, Pb and Zn were determined in muscles, gills, livers, bones and skins of six common edible fish species, namely Oreochromis niloticus, Mugil cephalus, Sardinella aurita, Mullus barbatus, Boops boops, Pagrus pagrus. Concentrations of heavy metals were determined by atomic absorption spectrophotometer and expressed as µg/g of wet tissue. Results: Results showed that iron and zinc were the most abundant among all fish tissues under investigation. The data obtained in the present work were compared well with the counterpart data reported internationally. The estimated values of all metals in muscles of fish in this study were below the permissible limits. Moreover, the potential health risks of metals to human via consumption of seafood were assessed by estimating daily intake and target heath quotient. Generally, risk values for the measured metals do not pose unacceptable risks at mean ingestion rate for muscles. Conclusions: It can be concluded that the investigated metals in edible parts of the examined species have no health problems for consumers.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vanessa Trindade Bittar

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela Sint

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

  5. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2001-07-30

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

  7. 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...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-05-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katrin Tirok

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

  10. 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.

  11. Multi-species consumer jams and the fall of guarded corals to crown-of-thorns seastar outbreaks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kayal, Mohsen; Ballard, Jane; Adjeroud, Mehdi

    2018-01-01

    Outbreaks of predatory crown-of-thorns seastars (COTS) can devastate coral reef ecosystems, yet some corals possess mutualistic guardian crabs that defend against COTS attacks. However, guarded corals do not always survive COTS outbreaks, with the ecological mechanisms sealing the fate of these corals during COTS infestations remaining unknown. In August 2008 in Moorea (17.539° S, 149.830° W), French Polynesia, an unusually dense multi-species aggregation of predators was observed feeding upon guarded corals following widespread coral decline due to COTS predation. Concurrent assaults from these amplified, mixed-species predator guilds likely overwhelm mutualistic crab defense, ultimately leading to the fall of guarded corals. Our observations indicate that guarded corals can sustain devastating COTS attacks for an extended duration, but eventually concede to intensifying assaults from diverse predators that aggregate in high numbers as alternative prey decays. The fall of guarded corals is therefore suggested to be ultimately driven by an indirect trophic cascade that leads to amplified attacks from diverse starving predators following prey decline, rather than COTS assaults alone. PMID:29487739

  12. 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.

  13. Staged invasions across disparate grasslands: Effects of seed provenance, consumers and disturbance on productivity and species richness

    Science.gov (United States)

    John L. Maron; Harald Auge; Dean E. Pearson; Lotte Korell; Isabell Hensen; Katharine N. Suding; Claudia Stein

    2014-01-01

    Exotic plant invasions are thought to alter productivity and species richness, yet these patterns are typically correlative. Few studies have experimentally invaded sites and asked how addition of novel species influences ecosystem function and community structure and examined the role of competitors and/or consumers in mediating these patterns. We invaded disturbed...

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Males of a strongly polygynous species consume more poisonous food than females.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carolina Bravo

    Full Text Available We present evidence of a possible case of self-medication in a lekking bird, the great bustard Otis tarda. Great bustards consumed blister beetles (Meloidae, in spite of the fact that they contain cantharidin, a highly toxic compound that is lethal in moderate doses. In addition to anthelminthic properties, cantharidin was effective against gastrointestinal bacteria that cause sexually-transmitted diseases. Although both sexes consumed blister beetles during the mating season, only males selected them among all available insects, and ingested more and larger beetles than females. The male-biased consumption suggests that males could use cantharidin to reduce their parasite load and increase their sexual attractiveness. This plausibly explains the intense cloaca display males perform to approaching females, and the meticulous inspection females conduct of the male's cloaca, a behaviour only observed in this and another similar species of the bustard family. A white, clean cloaca with no infection symptoms (e.g., diarrhoea is an honest signal of both, resistance to cantharidin and absence of parasites, and represents a reliable indicator of the male quality to the extremely choosy females. Our results do not definitely prove, but certainly strongly suggest that cantharidin, obtained by consumption of blister beetles, acts in great bustards as an oral anti-microbial and pathogen-limiting compound, and that males ingest these poisonous insects to increase their mating success, pointing out that self-medication might have been overlooked as a sexually-selected mechanism enhancing male fitness.

  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. Habitat heterogeneity as the key determinant of the abundance and habitat preference of prey species of tiger in the Chitwan National Park, Nepal

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Bhattarai, Bishnu Prasad; Kindlmann, Pavel

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 57, č. 1 (2012), s. 89-97 ISSN 0001-7051 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) ED1.1.00/02.0073; GA MŠk LC06073 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60870520 Keywords : Ungulates * Prey * Heterogeneity * Habitat selection * Abundance * Preference * Resource selection Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 0.949, year: 2012

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  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. 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

  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. Life stage and species identity affect whether habitat subsidies enhance or simply redistribute consumer biomass.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keller, Danielle A; Gittman, Rachel K; Bouchillon, Rachel K; Fodrie, F Joel

    2017-10-01

    Quantifying the response of mobile consumers to changes in habitat availability is essential for determining the degree to which population-level productivity is habitat limited rather than regulated by other, potentially density-independent factors. Over landscape scales, this can be explored by monitoring changes in density and foraging as habitat availability varies. As habitat availability increases, densities may: (1) decrease (unit-area production decreases; weak habitat limitation); (2) remain stable (unit-area production remains stable; habitat limitation) or (3) increase (unit-area production increases; strong habitat limitation). We tested the response of mobile estuarine consumers over 5 months to changes in habitat availability in situ by comparing densities and feeding rates on artificial reefs that were or were not adjacent to neighbouring artificial reefs or nearby natural reefs. Using either constructed or natural reefs to manipulate habitat availability, we documented threefold density decreases among juvenile stone crabs as habitat increased (i.e. weak habitat imitation). However, for adult stone crabs, density remained stable across treatments, demonstrating that habitat limitation presents a bottleneck in this species' later life history. Oyster toadfish densities also did not change with increasing habitat availability (i.e. habitat limitation), but densities of other cryptic fishes decreased as habitat availability increased (i.e. weak limitation). Feeding and abundance data suggested that some mobile fishes experience habitat limitation, or, potentially in one case, strong limitation across our habitat manipulations. These findings of significant, community-level habitat limitation provide insight into how global declines in structurally complex estuarine habitats may have reduced the fishery production of coastal ecosystems. © 2017 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2017 British Ecological Society.

  12. 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...

  13. Sterol composition of shellfish species commonly consumed in the United States

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katherine M. Phillips

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Background: Shellfish can be a component of a healthy diet due to a low fat and high protein content, but the cholesterol content of some species is often cited as a reason to limit their consumption. Data on levels of non-cholesterol sterols in commonly consumed species are lacking. Objective: Shellfish were sampled and analyzed to update sterol data in the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference. Design: Using a nationwide sampling plan, raw shrimp and sea scallops, canned clams, and steamed oysters, blue crab, and lobster were sampled from 12 statistically selected supermarkets across the United States in 2007-08. For each species, four composites were analyzed, each comprised of samples from three locations; shrimp and scallops from six single locations were also analyzed separately. Using validated analytical methodology, 14 sterols were determined in total lipid extracts after saponification and derivatization to trimethylsilyethers, using gas chromatography for quantitation and mass spectrometry for confirmation of components. Results: Crab, lobster, and shrimp contained significant cholesterol (96.2–27 mg/100 g; scallops and clams had the lowest concentrations (23.4–30.1 mg/100 g. Variability in cholesterol among single-location samples of shrimp was low. The major sterols in the mollusks were brassicasterol (12.6–45.6 mg/100 g and 24-methylenecholesterol (16.7–41.9 mg/100 g, with the highest concentrations in oysters. Total non-cholesterol sterols were 46.5–75.6 mg/100 g in five single-location scallops samples, but 107 mg/100 g in the sixth, with cholesterol also higher in that sample. Other prominent non-cholesterol sterols in mollusks were 22-dehydrocholesterol, isofucosterol, clionasterol, campesterol, and 24-norcholesta-5,22-diene-3β-ol (4–21 mg/100 g. Conclusions: The presence of a wide range of sterols, including isomeric forms, in shellfish makes the analysis

  14. The limits of adaptation: humans and the predator-prey arms race.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vermeij, Geerat J

    2012-07-01

    In the history of life, species have adapted to their consumers by evolving a wide variety of defenses. By contrast, animal species harvested in the wild by humans have not adapted structurally. Nonhuman predators have high failure rates at one or more stages of an attack, indicating that victim species have spatial refuges or phenotypic defenses that permit further functional improvement. A new compilation confirms that species in the wild cannot achieve immunity from human predation with structural defenses. The only remaining options are to become undesirable or to live in or escape to places where harvesting by people is curtailed. Escalation between prey defenses and predators' weapons may be restricted under human dominance to interactions involving those low-level predators that have benefited from human overexploitation of top consumers. © 2012 The Author.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    1978-04-01

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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1978-01-01

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

  17. 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...

  18. Species diversity modulates predation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2007-01-01

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

  19. 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 ...

  20. 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...

  1. 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...

  2. Staged invasions across disparate grasslands: effects of seed provenance, consumers and disturbance on productivity and species richness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maron, John L; Auge, Harald; Pearson, Dean E; Korell, Lotte; Hensen, Isabell; Suding, Katharine N; Stein, Claudia

    2014-04-01

    Exotic plant invasions are thought to alter productivity and species richness, yet these patterns are typically correlative. Few studies have experimentally invaded sites and asked how addition of novel species influences ecosystem function and community structure and examined the role of competitors and/or consumers in mediating these patterns. We invaded disturbed and undisturbed subplots in and out of rodent exclosures with seeds of native or exotic species in grasslands in Montana, California and Germany. Seed addition enhanced aboveground biomass and species richness compared with no-seeds-added controls, with exotics having disproportionate effects on productivity compared with natives. Disturbance enhanced the effects of seed addition on productivity and species richness, whereas rodents reduced productivity, but only in Germany and California. Our results demonstrate that experimental introduction of novel species can alter ecosystem function and community structure, but that local filters such as competition and herbivory influence the magnitude of these impacts. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. Physiological effects of diet mixing on consumer fitness: a meta-analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lefcheck, Jonathan S; Whalen, Matthew A; Davenport, Theresa M; Stone, Joshua P; Duffy, J Emmett

    2013-03-01

    The degree of dietary generalism among consumers has important consequences for population, community, and ecosystem processes, yet the effects on consumer fitness of mixing food types have not been examined comprehensively. We conducted a meta-analysis of 161 peer-reviewed studies reporting 493 experimental manipulations of prey diversity to test whether diet mixing enhances consumer fitness based on the intrinsic nutritional quality of foods and consumer physiology. Averaged across studies, mixed diets conferred significantly higher fitness than the average of single-species diets, but not the best single prey species. More than half of individual experiments, however, showed maximal growth and reproduction on mixed diets, consistent with the predicted benefits of a balanced diet. Mixed diets including chemically defended prey were no better than the average prey type, opposing the prediction that a diverse diet dilutes toxins. Finally, mixed-model analysis showed that the effect of diet mixing was stronger for herbivores than for higher trophic levels. The generally weak evidence for the nutritional benefits of diet mixing in these primarily laboratory experiments suggests that diet generalism is not strongly favored by the inherent physiological benefits of mixing food types, but is more likely driven by ecological and environmental influences on consumer foraging.

  9. 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 ...

  10. 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...

  11. 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.

  12. 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-.

  13. Conocimiento, uso y valor cultural de seis presas del jaguar (Panthera onca y su relación con éste, en San Nicolás de los Montes, San Luis Potosí, Mexico Knowledge, use and cultural value of six prey of jaguar (Panthera onca and their relationship with this species in San Nicolás de los Montes, San Luis Potosí, Mexico

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dulce M. Ávila-Nájera

    2011-09-01

    . According to villager´s perception, the more abundant species were pecari, coati and armadillo. Wildlife use for food was the most important since 82% of the interviewed people have consumed some species. The highest value of Cultural Importance was for white tailed deer (27.17. Jaguars in the ejido are considered harmful animals since they prey on livestock. Rural people and jaguars benefit from same wildlife species. The present study is the framework to develop future projects focused on managing and conserving natural resources that exist in the ejido San Nicolás de los Montes, San Luis Potosí.

  14. Relationships between otolith and fish size from Mediterranean and north-eastern Atlantic species to be used in predator-prey studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giménez, J; Manjabacas, A; Tuset, V M; Lombarte, A

    2016-10-01

    Regressions between fish length and otolith size are provided for 40 species from the north-eastern Atlantic Ocean and 142 species from the Mediterranean Sea. Regressions were also estimated at genus level. Most of the regressions (c. 84%) explained a high percentage of the deviance (>75%). © 2016 The Fisheries Society of the British Isles.

  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. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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].

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. Consumer preference for seeds and seedlings of rare species impacts tree diversity at multiple scales.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Hillary S; McCauley, Douglas J; Guevara, Roger; Dirzo, Rodolfo

    2013-07-01

    Positive density-dependent seed and seedling predation, where herbivores selectively eat seeds or seedlings of common species, is thought to play a major role in creating and maintaining plant community diversity. However, many herbivores and seed predators are known to exhibit preferences for rare foods, which could lead to negative density-dependent predation. In this study, we first demonstrate the occurrence of increased predation of locally rare tree species by a widespread group of insular seed and seedling predators, land crabs. We then build computer simulations based on these empirical data to examine the effects of such predation on diversity patterns. Simulations show that herbivore preferences for locally rare species are likely to drive scale-dependent effects on plant community diversity: at small scales these foraging patterns decrease plant community diversity via the selective consumption of rare plant species, while at the landscape level they should increase diversity, at least for short periods, by promoting clustered local dominance of a variety of species. Finally, we compared observed patterns of plant diversity at the site to those obtained via computer simulations, and found that diversity patterns generated under simulations were highly consistent with observed diversity patterns. We posit that preference for rare species by herbivores may be prevalent in low- or moderate-diversity systems, and that these effects may help explain diversity patterns across different spatial scales in such ecosystems.

  5. 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. 

  6. Organochlorine residue levels in livers of birds of prey from Spain: Inter-species comparison in relation with diet and migratory patterns

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Drooge, Barend van [Laboratory of Toxicology, Faculty of Veterinary, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, 08193 Bellaterra (Spain); Mateo, Rafael [Instituto de Investigacion en Recursos Cinegeticos, IREC (CSIC-UCLM), Ronda de Toledo s/n, 13071 Ciudad Real (Spain); Vives, Ingrid [Laboratory of Toxicology, Faculty of Veterinary, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, 08193 Bellaterra (Spain); Cardiel, Iris [Instituto de Investigacion en Recursos Cinegeticos, IREC (CSIC-UCLM), Ronda de Toledo s/n, 13071 Ciudad Real (Spain); Guitart, Raimon [Laboratory of Toxicology, Faculty of Veterinary, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, 08193 Bellaterra (Spain)], E-mail: raimon.guitart@uab.cat

    2008-05-15

    Livers from 130 specimens corresponding to 18 species of raptors from Spain were analysed for persistent organochlorine (OC) residues. In all species, p,p'-DDE was the most abundant individual OC compound detected, with geometric means ranging from 61 to 40,086 ng/g ww. The geometric mean for {sigma}PCB ranged from 225 to 9184 ng/g ww. Migration to Africa, south of Sahara, where p,p'-DDT is still in use, was not associated with higher liver concentrations of its metabolite, p,p'-DDE. The presence of birds in the diet of the species was an important species-specific factor determining the mean liver concentrations of p,p'-DDE and {sigma}PCB. The effect of the diet on OC concentrations in liver is explained by the lower metabolising capacity of OC compounds in birds, especially for p,p'-DDE. - The contribution of bird biomass in the diet is a determining factor for the accumulation of organochlorines in raptors.

  7. Organochlorine residue levels in livers of birds of prey from Spain: Inter-species comparison in relation with diet and migratory patterns

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Drooge, Barend van; Mateo, Rafael; Vives, Ingrid; Cardiel, Iris; Guitart, Raimon

    2008-01-01

    Livers from 130 specimens corresponding to 18 species of raptors from Spain were analysed for persistent organochlorine (OC) residues. In all species, p,p'-DDE was the most abundant individual OC compound detected, with geometric means ranging from 61 to 40,086 ng/g ww. The geometric mean for ΣPCB ranged from 225 to 9184 ng/g ww. Migration to Africa, south of Sahara, where p,p'-DDT is still in use, was not associated with higher liver concentrations of its metabolite, p,p'-DDE. The presence of birds in the diet of the species was an important species-specific factor determining the mean liver concentrations of p,p'-DDE and ΣPCB. The effect of the diet on OC concentrations in liver is explained by the lower metabolising capacity of OC compounds in birds, especially for p,p'-DDE. - The contribution of bird biomass in the diet is a determining factor for the accumulation of organochlorines in raptors

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Modelling prey consumption and switching by UK grey seals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2014-01-01

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

  11. A comparison of food habits and prey preferences of Amur tiger (Panthera tigris altaica Temminck, 1844) at the southwest Primorskii Krai in Russia and Hunchun in China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gu, Jiayin; Yu, Lan; Hua, Yan; Ning, Yao; Heng, Bao; Qi, Jinzhe; Long, Zexv; Yao, Mingyuan; Huang, Chong; Li, Zhilin; Lang, Jianming; Jiang, Guangshun; Ma, Jianzhang

    2018-05-03

    A small, isolated Amur tiger population is living at the southwest Primorskii Krai in Russia and Hunchun in China region. Many of them with "dual nationality" cross the border frequently. Formulating effective conservation strategies requires a clear understanding of tiger food requirements in both Russia and China sides, while Russia side already have clear results of it. We used scat analysis combined with data on the abundance of four prey species to estimate Amur tiger diet and prey preferences in Hunchun. We examined 53 tiger samples from 2011-2016 and found that tigers preyed on 12 species (11 species in winter), four of which were domestic animals with 33.58% biomass contribution, and got the first record that Amur tiger eat lynx in this area. Tigers showed a strong preference for wild boar (Jacobs index: +0.849), which were also the most frequently consumed prey, and a strong avoidance to roe deer (Jacobs index: -0.693). On the Russian side, domestic animals (just dog) were rarely found in tiger scat, and tiger did not show strong avoidance to roe deer, but to sika deer. We also found red deer footprints during winter surveys and that tigers ate red deer on the Chinese side, while there was no record of red deer on the Russian side. Reducing or eliminating human disturbance, such as grazing, is essential to recovering tiger prey and habitat in this area and the Sino-Russia joint ungulate annual survey is indispensable for prey estimates of this small, isolated Amur tiger population. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  12. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-08-14

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

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  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. 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. Nutritional and antinutritional composition of the five species of aquatic edible insects consumed in Manipur, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shantibala, T; Lokeshwari, R K; Debaraj, H

    2014-01-26

    The people living in Manipur have a distinct identity, culture, and food habits. They have a prototype culture of eating insects. In our study, the nutritive contents of five potentially-edible aquatic insects, Lethocerus indicus (Lepeletier and Serville) (Hemiptera: Belostomatidae), Laccotrephes maculatus (F.) (Nepidae), Hydrophilus olivaceous (F.) (Coleoptera: Dytiscidae), Cybister tripunctatus (Olivier), and Crocothemis servilia (Drury) (Odonata: Libellulidae), were analyzed to inform consumers about the nutritional quality of the insects and the suggested quantity of their intake. A good amount of protein content and high gross energy was recorded among the insects. The results showed high levels of sodium, calcium, and magnesium present in the insects, indicating that they are a good source of minerals. Antinutritional properties of these insects were below 0.52%, which is a non-toxic level. Aquatic insects, such as C. tripunctatus, also possesses strong antioxidant activity (110 µg/mL). Therefore, these insects can play a major role in food security, health, and environment management. It is essential to cultivate edible insects to maintain their population sustainability. This is an open access paper. We use the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license that permits unrestricted use, provided that the paper is properly attributed.

  19. 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.

  20. 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 ...

  1. Multi-species consumer jams and the fall of guarded corals to crown-of-thorns seastar outbreaks [version 1; referees: 2 approved

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohsen Kayal

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Outbreaks of predatory crown-of-thorns seastars (COTS can devastate coral reef ecosystems, yet some corals possess mutualistic guardian crabs that defend against COTS attacks. However, guarded corals do not always survive COTS outbreaks, with the ecological mechanisms sealing the fate of these corals during COTS infestations remaining unknown. In August 2008 in Moorea (17.539° S, 149.830° W, French Polynesia, an unusually dense multi-species aggregation of predators was observed feeding upon guarded corals following widespread coral decline due to COTS predation. Concurrent assaults from these amplified, mixed-species predator guilds likely overwhelm mutualistic crab defense, ultimately leading to the fall of guarded corals. Our observations indicate that guarded corals can sustain devastating COTS attacks for an extended duration, but eventually concede to intensifying assaults from diverse predators that aggregate in high numbers as alternative prey decays. The fall of guarded corals is therefore suggested to be ultimately driven by an indirect trophic cascade that leads to amplified attacks from diverse starving predators following prey decline, rather than COTS assaults alone.

  2. Multi-species consumer jams and the fall of guarded corals to crown-of-thorns seastar outbreaks [version 2; referees: 2 approved

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohsen Kayal

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Outbreaks of predatory crown-of-thorns seastars (COTS can devastate coral reef ecosystems, yet some corals possess mutualistic guardian crabs that defend against COTS attacks. However, guarded corals do not always survive COTS outbreaks, with the ecological mechanisms sealing the fate of these corals during COTS infestations remaining unknown. In August 2008 in Moorea (17.539° S, 149.830° W, French Polynesia, an unusually dense multi-species aggregation of predators was observed feeding upon guarded corals following widespread coral decline due to COTS predation. Concurrent assaults from these amplified, mixed-species predator guilds likely overwhelm mutualistic crab defense, ultimately leading to the fall of guarded corals. Our observations indicate that guarded corals can sustain devastating COTS attacks for an extended duration, but eventually concede to intensifying assaults from diverse predators that aggregate in high numbers as alternative prey decays. The fall of guarded corals is therefore suggested to be ultimately driven by an indirect trophic cascade that leads to amplified attacks from diverse starving predators following prey decline, rather than COTS assaults alone.

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. Wolves on the hunt: The behavior of wolves hunting wild prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mech, L. David; Smith, Douglas W.; MacNulty, Daniel R.

    2015-01-01

    The interactions between apex predators and their prey are some of the most awesome and meaningful in nature—displays of strength, endurance, and a deep coevolutionary history. And there is perhaps no apex predator more impressive and important in its hunting—or more infamous, more misjudged—than the wolf. Because of wolves’ habitat, speed, and general success at evading humans, researchers have faced great obstacles in studying their natural hunting behaviors. The first book to focus explicitly on wolf hunting of wild prey, Wolves on the Hunt seeks to fill these gaps in our knowledge and understanding. Combining behavioral data, thousands of hours of original field observations, research in the literature, a wealth of illustrations, and—in the e-book edition and online—video segments from cinematographer Robert K. Landis, the authors create a compelling and complex picture of these hunters. The wolf is indeed an adept killer, able to take down prey much larger than itself. While adapted to hunt primarily hoofed animals, a wolf—or especially a pack of wolves—can kill individuals of just about any species. But even as wolves help drive the underlying rhythms of the ecosystems they inhabit, their evolutionary prowess comes at a cost: wolves spend one-third of their time hunting—the most time consuming of all wolf activities—and success at the hunt only comes through traveling long distances, persisting in the face of regular failure, detecting and taking advantage of deficiencies in the physical condition of individual prey, and through ceaseless trial and error, all while risking injury or death. By describing and analyzing the behaviors wolves use to hunt and kill various wild prey—including deer, moose, caribou, elk, Dall sheep, mountain goats, bison, musk oxen, arctic hares, beavers, and others—Wolves on the Hunt provides a revelatory portrait of one of nature’s greatest hunters.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  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. Arsenic and arsenic species in shellfish and finfish from the western Arabian Gulf and consumer health risk assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Krishnakumar, Periyadan K., E-mail: kkumarpk@kfupm.edu.sa [Center for Environment and Water, Research Institute, King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, Dhahran 31261 (Saudi Arabia); Qurban, Mohammad A. [Center for Environment and Water, Research Institute, King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, Dhahran 31261 (Saudi Arabia); Stiboller, Michael [Institute of Chemistry-Analytical Chemistry, NAWI Graz, University of Graz, A-8010 Graz (Austria); Nachman, Keeve E. [Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Department of Environmental Health Sciences, Baltimore, MD (United States); Joydas, Thadickal V.; Manikandan, Karuppasamy P.; Mushir, Shemsi Ahsan [Center for Environment and Water, Research Institute, King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, Dhahran 31261 (Saudi Arabia); Francesconi, Kevin A. [Institute of Chemistry-Analytical Chemistry, NAWI Graz, University of Graz, A-8010 Graz (Austria)

    2016-10-01

    This study reports the levels of total arsenic and arsenic species in marine biota such as clams (Meretrix meretrix; N = 21) and pearl oyster (Pinctada radiata; N = 5) collected from nine costal sites in Jan 2014, and cuttlefish (Sepia pharaonis; N = 8), shrimp (Penaeus semisulcatus; N = 1), and seven commercially important finfish species (N = 23) collected during Apr–May 2013 from seven offshore sites in the western Arabian Gulf. Total As and As species such as dimethylarsinic acid (DMA), arsenobetaine (AB), trimethylarsine oxide (TMAO), arsenocholine (AC), tetramethylarsonium ion (Tetra), arsenosugar-glycerol (As-Gly) and inorganic As (iAs) were determined by using ICPMS and HPLC/ICPMS. In bivalves, the total As concentrations ranged from 16 to 118 mg/kg dry mass; the toxic iAs fraction contributed on average less than 0.8% of the total As, while the nontoxic AB fraction formed around 58%. Total As concentrations for the remaining seafood (cuttlefish, shrimp and finfish) ranged from 11 to 134 mg/kg dry mass and the iAs and AB fractions contributed on average 0.03% and 81% respectively of the total As. There was no significant relationship between the tissue concentrations of total As and iAs in the samples. There was also no significant relationship between As levels in seafood and geographical location or salinity of the waters from which samples were collected. Based on our results, we recommend introducing a maximum permissible level of arsenic in seafood from the Gulf based on iAs content rather than based on total As. Our analyses of cancer risks and non-cancer hazards identified non-negligible risks and the potential for hazards; the greatest risks were identified for expatriate consumers of bivalves and high-end consumers of seafood. Despite this, many uncertainties remain that would be best addressed by further analyses. - Highlights: • Arabian Gulf seafood contains relatively high concentrations of total arsenic. • Non-toxic arsenobetaine forms

  13. Arsenic and arsenic species in shellfish and finfish from the western Arabian Gulf and consumer health risk assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Krishnakumar, Periyadan K.; Qurban, Mohammad A.; Stiboller, Michael; Nachman, Keeve E.; Joydas, Thadickal V.; Manikandan, Karuppasamy P.; Mushir, Shemsi Ahsan; Francesconi, Kevin A.

    2016-01-01

    This study reports the levels of total arsenic and arsenic species in marine biota such as clams (Meretrix meretrix; N = 21) and pearl oyster (Pinctada radiata; N = 5) collected from nine costal sites in Jan 2014, and cuttlefish (Sepia pharaonis; N = 8), shrimp (Penaeus semisulcatus; N = 1), and seven commercially important finfish species (N = 23) collected during Apr–May 2013 from seven offshore sites in the western Arabian Gulf. Total As and As species such as dimethylarsinic acid (DMA), arsenobetaine (AB), trimethylarsine oxide (TMAO), arsenocholine (AC), tetramethylarsonium ion (Tetra), arsenosugar-glycerol (As-Gly) and inorganic As (iAs) were determined by using ICPMS and HPLC/ICPMS. In bivalves, the total As concentrations ranged from 16 to 118 mg/kg dry mass; the toxic iAs fraction contributed on average less than 0.8% of the total As, while the nontoxic AB fraction formed around 58%. Total As concentrations for the remaining seafood (cuttlefish, shrimp and finfish) ranged from 11 to 134 mg/kg dry mass and the iAs and AB fractions contributed on average 0.03% and 81% respectively of the total As. There was no significant relationship between the tissue concentrations of total As and iAs in the samples. There was also no significant relationship between As levels in seafood and geographical location or salinity of the waters from which samples were collected. Based on our results, we recommend introducing a maximum permissible level of arsenic in seafood from the Gulf based on iAs content rather than based on total As. Our analyses of cancer risks and non-cancer hazards identified non-negligible risks and the potential for hazards; the greatest risks were identified for expatriate consumers of bivalves and high-end consumers of seafood. Despite this, many uncertainties remain that would be best addressed by further analyses. - Highlights: • Arabian Gulf seafood contains relatively high concentrations of total arsenic. • Non-toxic arsenobetaine forms

  14. 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.

  15. 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...

  16. A comparison of food habits and prey preference of Amur tiger (Panthera tigris altaica) at three sites in the Russian Far East.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerley, Linda L; Mukhacheva, Anna S; Matyukhina, Dina S; Salmanova, Elena; Salkina, Galina P; Miquelle, Dale G

    2015-07-01

    Prey availability is one of the principal drivers of tiger distribution and abundance. Therefore, formulating effective conservation strategies requires a clear understanding of tiger diet. We used scat analysis in combination with data on the abundance of several prey species to estimate Amur tiger diet and preference at 3 sites in the Russian Far East. We also examined the effect of pseudoreplication on estimates of tiger diet. We collected 770 scats across the 3 sites. Similar to previous studies, we found that tigers primarily preyed on medium to large ungulates, with wild boar, roe, sika and red deer collectively comprising 86.7% of total biomass consumed on average. According to Jacobs' index, tigers preferred wild boar, and avoided sika deer. Variation in preference indices derived from these scat analyses compared to indices derived from kill data appear to be due to adjustments in biomass intake when sex-age of a killed individual is known: a component missing from scat data. Pseudoreplication (multiple samples collected from a single kill site) also skewed results derived from scat analyses. Scat analysis still appears useful in providing insight into the diets of carnivores when the full spectrum of prey species needs to be identified, or when sample sizes from kill data are not sufficient. When sample sizes of kill data are large (as is now possible with GPS-collared animals), kill data adjusted by sex-age categories probably provides the most accurate estimates of prey biomass composition. Our results provide further confirmation of the centrality of medium ungulates, in particular wild boar, to Amur tiger diet, and suggest that the protection of this group of species is critical to Amur tiger conservation. © 2015 International Society of Zoological Sciences, Institute of Zoology/Chinese Academy of Sciences and Wiley Publishing Asia Pty Ltd.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-01

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

  18. Sarcocystis sinensis is the most prevalent thick-walled Sarcocystis species in beef on sale for consumers in Germany.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moré, G; Pantchev, A; Skuballa, J; Langenmayer, M C; Maksimov, P; Conraths, F J; Venturini, M C; Schares, G

    2014-06-01

    Bovines are intermediate hosts of Sarcocystis cruzi, Sarcocystis hirsuta, and Sarcocystis hominis, which use canids, felids, or primates as definitive hosts, respectively. Cattle represent also intermediate hosts of Sarcocystis sinensis, but the definitive hosts of this parasite are not yet known. Sarcocystosis in cattle is frequently asymptomatic. The infection is characterized by the presence of thin-walled (S. cruzi) or thick-walled muscle cysts or sarcocysts (S. hominis, S. sinensis, and S. hirsuta). Recent reports suggest high prevalence of the zoonotic S. hominis in beef in Europe. We therefore aimed at differentiating Sarcocystis spp. in beef offered to consumers in Germany using molecular and microscopical methods, focusing on those species producing thick-walled sarcocysts. A total of 257 beef samples were obtained from different butcheries and supermarkets in Germany and processed by conventional and multiplex real-time PCR. In addition, 130 of these samples were processed by light microscopy and in 24.6% thick-walled cysts were detected. Transmission electron microscopical analysis of six of these samples revealed an ultrastructural cyst wall pattern compatible with S. sinensis in five samples and with S. hominis in one sample. PCR-amplified 18S ribosomal DNA (rDNA) fragments of 28 individual thick-walled cysts were sequenced, and sequence identities of ≥98% with S. sinensis (n = 22), S. hominis (n = 5) and S. hirsuta (n = 1) were observed. Moreover, nine Sarcocystis sp. 18S rDNA full length gene sequences were obtained, five of S. sinensis, three of S. hominis, and one of S. hirsuta. Out of all samples (n = 257), 174 (67.7%) tested positive by conventional PCR and 179 (69.6%) by multiplex real-time PCR for Sarcocystis spp. Regarding individual species, 134 (52%), 95 (37%), 17 (6.6%), and 16 (6.2%) were positive for S. cruzi, S. sinensis, S. hirsuta, and S. hominis, respectively. In conclusion, S. sinensis is the most prevalent thick

  19. 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.

  20. Pollutants and fish predator/prey behavior: A review of laboratory and field approaches

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judith S. WEIS, Allison CANDELMO

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Fish behavior can be altered by contaminants. There is an extensive literature on laboratory behavioral assays, with many chemicals impairing feeding or predator avoidance. However, there is not extensive work on fishes that live in contaminated environments. Therefore, we then review our recent research on feeding and trophic relations of populations from contaminated estuaries compared with relatively unpolluted sites. The mummichog Fundulus heteroclitus, is a non-migratory fish; those from more contaminated areas are poor predators and slower to capture active prey (grass shrimp, Palaemonetes pugio. In the field, they consume much detritus and sediment, which is not nutritious. They are less active than fish from cleaner sites and more vulnerable to predation. They have altered thyroid glands and neurotransmitter levels, which may underlie altered behaviors. Fish from the reference site kept in tanks with sediment and food from the polluted site showed bioaccumulation and reduced prey capture after two months, although fish from the polluted site did not show significant improvement when maintained in a clean environment. Poor nutrition and predator avoidance may be responsible for their being smaller and having a shorter life span than reference fish. Bluefish Pomatomus saltatrix, are a marine species in which the young-of-the-year spend their first summer in estuaries. We found bioaccumulation of contaminants and reduced activity, schooling, and feeding in young-of-the-year bluefish from a relatively unpolluted site that were fed prey fish from a contaminated site. They also had altered thyroid glands and neurotransmitter levels. Many field-caught specimens had empty stomachs, which is rare in this species. In the fall, when they migrate back out to the ocean, they are smaller, slower, and more likely to starve or to be eaten than those that spent their summer in cleaner estuaries [Current Zoology 58 (1: 9-20, 2012].

  1. 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…

  2. 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 ...

  3. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-01-01

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

  5. 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...

  6. 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).

  7. 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.

  8. Predator-prey interactions between a recent invader, the Chinese sleeper (Perccottus glenii and the European pond turtle (Emys orbicularis: a case study from Lithuania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vytautas Rakauskas

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The European pond turtle, Emys orbicularis, is a critically endangered species in most European countries. Habitat degradation and fragmentation are considered the main reasons for the decline of E. orbicularis. However, the spread of invasive species may also contribute to the disappearance of E. orbicularis populations. We examined the range overlap and predator-prey interactions between the invasive Chinese sleeper, Perccottus glenii, and E. orbicularis through controlled experiments and in field studies. Field surveys showed that both species occupied similar habitats. Predator-prey experiments suggested that newly hatched turtles are resistant to P. glenii predation. Conversely, adults of E. orbicularis consumed juvenile P. glenii even when other food sources were available. Overall, these findings suggested that E. orbicularis is not among the potential prey organisms in the diet of the invasive P. glenii, and that this fish does not directly contribute to the decline of E. orbicularis in Europe.

  9. Antagonistic interactions between an invasive alien and a native coccinellid species may promote coexistence.

    OpenAIRE

    Hentley, W.T.; Vanbergen, A.J.; Beckerman, A.P.; Brien, M.N.; Hails, R.S.; Jones, T.H.; Johnson, S.N.

    2016-01-01

    1. Despite the capacity of invasive alien species to alter ecosystems, the mechanisms underlying their impact remain only partly understood. Invasive alien predators, for example, can significantly disrupt recipient communities by consuming prey species or acting as an intraguild predator (IGP). 2. Behavioural interactions are key components of interspecific competition between predators,yet these are often overlooked invasion processes. Here, we show how behavioural, nonlethal IGP intera...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julia Johnke

    2017-10-01

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

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Revealing the role of predator interference in a predator-prey system with disease in prey population

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chakraborty, Subhendu; Kooi, B.W.; Biswas, B.

    2015-01-01

    Predation on a species subjected to an infectious disease can affect both the infection level and the population dynamics. There is an ongoing debate about the act of managing disease in natural populations through predation. Recent theoretical and empirical evidence shows that predation...... on infected populations can have both positive and negative influences on disease in prey populations. Here, we present a predator-prey system where the prey population is subjected to an infectious disease to explore the impact of predator on disease dynamics. Specifically, we investigate how...... on the strength of interference among predators, predators enhance or control disease outbreaks and population persistence. Moreover, the presence of multistable regimes makes the system very sensitive to perturbations and facilitates a number of regime shifts. Since, the habitat structure and the choice...

  14. 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...

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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...

  18. 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....

  19. Prey utilisation and trophic overlap between the non native mosquitofish and a native fish in two Mediterranean rivers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. KALOGIANNI

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Non native freshwater fish species have been long implicated in the decline of native Mediterranean ichthyofauna, through hybridization, disease transmission, competition for food and habitat, predation and/or ecosystem alteration; our knowledge, however, on the underlying mechanisms of these ecological impacts remains very limited. To explore the potential for trophic competition between the widespread Eastern mosquitofish Gambusia holbrooki and its co-occurring native toothcarp Valencia letourneuxi we compared resource use, feeding strategies, trophic selectivities and diet niche overlap. For this purpose, we studied two populations of the two species from a freshwater and a brackish habitat respectively, characterized by different food resource availabilities. In both habitats, the mosquitofish consumed a greater diversity of invertebrates and preyed on terrestrial invertebrates more frequently than the native toothcarp. Furthermore, in the less diverse and less rich brackish habitat, the non native relied heavily on plant material to balance a decrease in animal prey consumption and modified its individual feeding strategy, whereas these adaptive changes were not apparent in the native species. Their diet overlapped, indicating trophic competition, but this overlap was affected by resource availability variation; in the freshwater habitat, there was limited overlap in their diet, whereas in the brackish habitat, their diets and prey selectivities converged and there was high overlap in resource use, indicative of intense interspecific trophic competition. Overall, it appears that the underlying mechanism of the putative negative impacts of the mosquitofish on the declining Corfu toothcarp is mainly trophic competition, regulated by resource variability, though there is also evidence of larvae predation by the mosquitofish.

  20. 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.

  1. Testing the junk-food hypothesis on marine birds: Effects of prey type on growth and development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romano, Marc D.; Piatt, John F.; Roby, D.D.

    2006-01-01

    The junk-food hypothesis attributes declines in productivity of marine birds and mammals to changes in the species of prey they consume and corresponding differences in nutritional quality of those prey. To test this hypothesis nestling Black-legged Kittiwakes (Rissa tridactyla) and Tufted Puffins (Fratercula cirrhata) were raised in captivity under controlled conditions to determine whether the type and quality of fish consumed by young seabirds constrains their growth and development. Some nestlings were fed rations of Capelin (Mallotus villosus), Herring (Clupea pallasi) or Sand Lance (Ammodytes hexapterus) and their growth was compared with nestlings raised on equal biomass rations of Walleye Pollock (Theragra chalcograma). Nestlings fed rations of herring, sand lance, or capelin experienced higher growth increments than nestlings fed pollock. The energy density of forage fish fed to nestlings had a marked effect on growth increments and could be expected to have an effect on pre- and post-fledging survival of nestlings in the wild. These results provide empirical support for the junk-food hypothesis.

  2. 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

  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. 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

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. Prey selection of corallivorous muricids at Koh Tao (Gulf of Thailand) four years after a major coral bleaching event

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Moerland, M.S.; Scott, C.M.; Hoeksema, B.W.

    2016-01-01

    Corallivorous Drupella (Muricidae) snails at Koh Tao are reported to have extended their range of prey species following a major coral bleaching event in 2010. Populations of their preferred Acropora prey had locally diminished in both size and abundance, and the snails had introduced free-living

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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...

  18. 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...

  19. 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, a situation roughly parallel to that 10,000 to 50,000 years ago, when naive animals first encountered colonizing human hunters. Along present-day carnivore recolonization fronts, brown (also called grizzly) bears killed predator-naive adult moose at disproportionately high rates in Scandinavia, and moose mothers who lost juveniles to recolonizing wolves in North America's Yellowstone region developed hypersensitivity to wolf howls. Although prey that had been unfamiliar with dangerous predators for as few as 50 to 130 years were highly vulnerable to initial encounters, behavioral adjustments to reduce predation transpired within a single generation. The fact that at least one prey species quickly learns to be wary of restored carnivores should negate fears about localized prey extinction.

  20. Comparison of metabolic substrates in alligators and several birds of prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sweazea, Karen L; McMurtry, John P; Elsey, Ruth M; Redig, Patrick; Braun, Eldon J

    2014-08-01

    On average, avian blood glucose concentrations are 1.5-2 times those of mammals of similar mass and high concentrations of insulin are required to lower blood glucose. Whereas considerable data exist for granivorous species, few data are available for plasma metabolic substrate and glucoregulatory hormone concentrations for carnivorous birds and alligators. Birds and mammals with carnivorous diets have higher metabolic rates than animals consuming diets with less protein whereas alligators have low metabolic rates. Therefore, the present study was designed to compare substrate and glucoregulatory hormone concentrations in several birds of prey and a phylogenetically close relative of birds, the alligator. The hypothesis was that the combination of carnivorous diets and high metabolic rates favored the evolution of greater protein and fatty acid utilization leading to insulin resistance and high plasma glucose concentrations in carnivorous birds. In contrast, it was hypothesized that alligators would have low substrate utilization attributable to a low metabolic rate. Fasting plasma substrate and glucoregulatory hormone concentrations were compared for bald eagles (Haliaeetus leucocephalus), great horned owls (Bubo virginianus), red-tailed hawks (Buteo jamaicensis), and American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis). Avian species had high circulating β-hydroxybutyrate (10-21 mg/dl) compared to alligators (2.81 ± 0.16 mg/dl). In mammals high concentrations of this byproduct of fatty acid utilization are correlated with insulin resistance. Fasting glucose and insulin concentrations were positively correlated in eagles whereas no relationship was found between these variables for owls, hawks or alligators. Additionally, β-hydroxybutyrate concentrations were low in alligators. Similar to carnivorous mammals, ingestion of a high protein diet may have favored the utilization of fatty acids and protein for energy thereby promoting the development of insulin

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. 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...

  5. Food niche overlap between two sympatric leaf-litter frog species from Central Amazonia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leandro Talione Sabagh

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available We studied the feeding habits and similarities in the diet of two sympatric and syntopic Amazonian frog species, Anomaloglossus stepheni (Aromobatidae and Leptodactylus andreae (Leptodactylidae in a forested area in Central Amazonia. The breadth of the trophic niche of these species was 5.89 and 3.75, respectively, and approximately 85% of their diets were similar. Ants were main food item in the diets of both frog species. The coexistence between these frog species may be facilitated by the significant differences in the size of their mouths. This difference allows them to consume preys items of different sizes.

  6. Habitat associations of small mammals in southern Brazil and use of regurgitated pellets of birds of prey for inventorying a local fauna

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    DR. Scheibler

    Full Text Available We inventoried terrestrial small mammals in an agricultural area in southern Brazil by using trapping and prey consumed by Barn Owls (Tyto alba and White-tailed Kites (Elanus leucurus. Small mammals were trapped in three habitat types: corn fields, uncultivated fields ("capoeiras", and native forest fragments. A total of 1,975 small mammal specimens were trapped, another 2,062 identified from the diet of Barn Owls, and 2,066 from the diet of White-tailed Kites. Both trapping and prey in the predators' diet yielded 18 small mammal species: three marsupials (Didelphis albiventris, Gracilinanus agilis, and Monodelphis dimidiata and 15 rodents (Akodon paranaensis, Bruceppatersonius iheringi, Calomys sp., Cavia aperea, Euryzygomatomys spinosus, Holochilus brasiliensis, Mus musculus, Necromys lasiurus, Nectomys squamipes, Oligoryzomys nigripes, Oryzomys angouya, Oxymycterus sp.1, Oxymycterus sp.2, Rattus norvegicus, and Rattus rattus (Linnaeus, 1758. The greatest richness was found in the uncultivated habitat. We concluded that the three methods studied for inventorying small mammals (prey in the diet of Barn Owls, White-tailed Kites, and trapping were complementary, since together, rather than separately, they produced a better picture of local richness.

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. Plant species modifies the functional response of Phytoseiulus persimilis (Acari: Phytoseiidae) to Tetranychus urticae (Acari: Tetranychidae): implications for biological control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skirvin, D J; Fenlon, J S

    2001-02-01

    The functional response of the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis Athias-Henriot to eggs of its prey, the spider mite Tetranychus urticae Koch was examined on three plant species. Experiments were done to determine whether differences in the functional response on the three plant species were due to the morphological features of the crop directly on the predator or through an effect of the plant species on the prey. The results show that crop morphology is the only factor influencing the predatory ability of P. persimilis on the three plant species. Fewer eggs were eaten on Ceanothus thyrsiflorus var. 'Autumnal Blue', the plant species with hairy leaves, and greater numbers of prey consumed on Choisya ternata, a species with smooth leaves. However, similarly few eggs were eaten on the smooth, but waxy leaved Euonymus japonicus as on Ceanothus thyrsiflorus, demonstrating that morphological characters of leaves other than the possession of hairs and trichomes may affect the rates of predation. The implications of these results for the tritrophic interactions between plant, predator and prey, and the development of suitable biological control strategies are discussed.

  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. Dietary intake of heavy metals from eight highly consumed species of cultured fish and possible human health risk implications in Bangladesh

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A.K.M. Atique Ullah

    Full Text Available Concentrations of five heavy metals (Pb, Cd, Cr, As and Hg in eight highly consumed cultured fish species (Labeo rohita, Clarias gariepinus, Hypophthalmichthys molitrix, Cyprinus capio, Puntius sarana, Oreochromis mossambicus, Pangasius pangasius and Anabas testudineus collected from four wholesale markets of Dhaka city, Bangladesh (Karwan Bazar, Mohammadpur Town Hall, Newmarket and Mirpur-1 were measured using atomic absorption spectrometry (AAS in order to evaluate the potential human health risks from the consumption of fish. The estimated daily intake (EDI of all the studied heavy metals calculated on the basis of mean fish consumption of 49.5 g person−1 d−1 by Bangladeshi households indicated that no risk to people’s health with respect to the EDI of investigated heavy metals through the consumption of the fish samples. From the human health point of view, the estimation of non-carcinogenic risk indicated that intake of individual heavy metal through the consumption of fish was safe for human health, whereas, consumption of combined heavy metals suggested potential health risk to highly exposed consumers. However, the estimation of carcinogenic risk of arsenic due to the consumption of fish indicated that consumers remain at risk of cancer. Keywords: Heavy metals, Fish, Estimated daily intake, Carcinogenic and non-carcinogenic risk, Human health risks

  12. 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.

  13. 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)

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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)

  20. 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.

  1. 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)

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hayley S Clements

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

  4. Water velocity influences prey detection and capture by drift-feeding juvenile coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch) and steelhead (Oncorhynchus mykiss irideus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    John J. Piccolo; Nicholas F. Hughes; Mason D. Bryant

    2008-01-01

    We examined the effects of water velocity on prey detection and capture by drift-feeding juvenile coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch) and steelhead (sea-run rainbow trout,Oncorhynchus mykiss irideus) in laboratory experiments. We used repeated-measures analysis of variance to test the effects of velocity, species, and the velocity x species interaction on prey capture...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R.J. Power

    2002-12-01

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

  6. 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.

  7. Nutrient and mineral composition during shoot growth in seven species of Phyllostachys and Pseudosasa bamboo consumed by giant panda.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christian, A L; Knott, K K; Vance, C K; Falcone, J F; Bauer, L L; Fahey, G C; Willard, S; Kouba, A J

    2015-12-01

    During the annual period of bamboo shoot growth in spring, free-ranging giant pandas feed almost exclusively on the shoots while ignoring the leaves and full- height culm. Little is known about the nutritional changes that occur during bamboo shoot growth, if nutritional changes differ among species, or how these changes might influence forage selection. Our objective was to examine the nutrient and mineral composition during three phases of shoot growth (180 cm) for seven species of bamboo (Phyllostachys (P.) aurea, P. aureosulcata, P. bissetii, P. glauca, P. nuda, P. rubromarginata, Pseudosasa japonica) fed to captive giant pandas at the Memphis Zoo. Total dietary fiber content of bamboo shoots increased (p 180 cm, while crude protein, fat and ash exhibited significant declines (p panda diets when available. Journal of Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition © 2015 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.

  8. Parasites as prey in aquatic food webs: implications for predator infection and parasite transmission

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Thieltges, D.W.; Amundsen, P.-A.; Hechinger, R.F.; Johnson, P.T.J.; Lafferty, K.D.; Mouritsen, K.N.; Preston, D.L.; Reise, K.; Zander, C.D.; Poulin, R.

    2013-01-01

    While the recent inclusion of parasites into food-web studies has highlighted the role of parasites as consumers, there is accumulating evidence that parasites can also serve as prey for predators. Here we investigated empirical patterns of predation on parasites and their relationships with

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Prey choice and habitat use drive sea otter pathogen exposure in a resource-limited coastal system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Christine K.; Tinker, M. Tim; Estes, James A.; Conrad, Patricia A.; Staedler, Michelle M.; Miller, Melissa A.; Jessup, David A.; Mazet, Jonna A.K.

    2014-01-01

    The processes promoting disease in wild animal populations are highly complex, yet identifying these processes is critically important for conservation when disease is limiting a population. By combining field studies with epidemiologic tools, we evaluated the relationship between key factors impeding southern sea otter (Enhydra lutris nereis) population growth: disease and resource limitation. This threatened population has struggled to recover despite protection, so we followed radio-tagged sea otters and evaluated infection with 2 disease-causing protozoal pathogens, Toxoplasma gondii and Sarcocystis neurona, to reveal risks that increased the likelihood of pathogen exposure. We identified patterns of pathogen infection that are linked to individual animal behavior, prey choice, and habitat use. We detected a high-risk spatial cluster of S. neurona infections in otters with home ranges in southern Monterey Bay and a coastal segment near San Simeon and Cambria where otters had high levels of infection with T. gondii. We found that otters feeding on abalone, which is the preferred prey in a resource-abundant marine ecosystem, had a very low risk of infection with either pathogen, whereas otters consuming small marine snails were more likely to be infected with T. gondii. Individual dietary specialization in sea otters is an adaptive mechanism for coping with limited food resources along central coastal California. High levels of infection with protozoal pathogens may be an adverse consequence of dietary specialization in this threatened species, with both depleted resources and disease working synergistically to limit recovery.

  14. Aquatic pollution increases use of terrestrial prey subsidies by stream fish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kraus, Johanna M.; Pomeranz, Justin F.; Todd, Andrew S.; Walters, David M.; Schmidt, Travis S.; Wanty, Richard B.

    2016-01-01

    Stream food webs are connected with their riparian zones through cross-ecosystem movements of energy and nutrients. The use and impact of terrestrial subsidies on aquatic consumers is determined in part by in situ biomass of aquatic prey. Thus, stressors such as aquatic pollutants that greatly reduce aquatic secondary production could increase the need for and reliance of stream consumers on terrestrial resource subsidies.

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. 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

  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. Quality of the forage apparently consumed by beef calves in natural grassland under fertilization and oversown with cool season forage species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Denise Adelaide Gomes Elejalde

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to evaluate the chemical composition of the forage apparently consumed by steers in a natural grassland on region of Campanha, in Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, subjected or not to different inputs: NP - natural pasture without inputs; FNP - fertilized natural pasture and INP - improved natural grassland with fertilization and over-seeded with cultivated winter species. Three Angus steers testers and a variable number of regulator animals per experimental unit were utilized in order to maintain 13 kg of DM/100 kg of live weight (LW as forage allowance. One time at each season, hand plucking samples were performed along the daily grazing time simulating forage harvested by the animals. The collected samples after drying and grind were submitted to chemical analysis to determine the forage quality. Except in winter and spring, the values of neutral detergent fiber were higher than the critical value of 550 g/kg of DM, which could limit forage intake, demonstrating that the values of forage on offer provided (15.6; 13.7; 13.5; 15.8 kg of DM/100 kg of LW/day in summer, autumn, winter and spring, respectively were not restrictive to intake. The oversowing of winter cultivated species or fertilization positively alter the degradable fiber content. The seasons had marked influence on the chemical composition of forage apparently consumed; positively increasing some fractions of forage chemical composition in the seasons in which native or cultivated winter species increased their participation. The forage chemical composition is the determining factor in animal performance in natural pasture.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Szövényi Gergely

    2015-06-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-02-01

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

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ebbinge, B.S.; Spaans, B.

    2002-01-01

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

  3. 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.

  4. Uni-directional consumer-resource theory characterizing transitions of interaction outcomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Y.; DeAngelis, D.L.; Holland, J.N.

    2011-01-01

    A resource is considered here to be a biotic population that helps to maintain the population growth of its consumers, whereas a consumer utilizes a resource and in turn decreases its growth rate. Bi-directional consumer-resource (C-R) interactions have been the object of recent theory. In these interactions, each species acts, in some respects, as both a consumer and a resource of the other, which is the basis of many mutualisms. In uni-directional C-R interactions between two species, one acts as a consumer and the other as a material and/or energy resource, while neither acts as both. The relationship between insect pollinator/seed parasites and the host plant is an example of the latter interaction type of C-R, as the insect provides no material resource to the plant (though it provides a pollination service). In this paper we consider a different variation of the uni-directional C-R interaction, in which the resource species has both positive and negative effects on the consumer species, while the consumer has only a negative effect on the resource. A predator-prey system in which the prey is able to kill or consume predator eggs or larvae is an example. Our aim is to demonstrate mechanisms by which interaction outcomes of this system vary with different conditions, and thus to extend the uni-directional C-R theory established by Holland and DeAngelis (2009). By the analysis of a specific two-species system, it is shown that there is no periodic solution of the system, and the parameter (factor) space can be divided into six regions, which correspond to predation/parasitism, amensalism, and competition. The interaction outcomes of the system transition smoothly when the parameters are changed continuously in the six regions and/or initial densities of the species vary in a smooth fashion. Varying a pair of parameters can also result in the transitions. The analysis leads to both conditions under which the species approach their maximal densities, and

  5. Permanence for a class of periodic time-dependent predator-prey system with dispersal in a patchy-environment

    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 two patches, in which both the prey and predator species can disperse between two patches. By utilizing analytic method, sufficient and realistic conditions on permanence and the existence of periodic solution are established. The theoretical results are confirmed by a special example and numerical simulations

  6. Predictive modelling of habitat use 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

    2015-01-01

    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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Large predatory coral trout species unlikely to meet increasing energetic demands in a warming ocean

    KAUST Repository

    Johansen, J.L.

    2015-09-08

    Increased ocean temperature due to climate change is raising metabolic demands and energy requirements of marine ectotherms. If productivity of marine systems and fisheries are to persist, individual species must compensate for this demand through increasing energy acquisition or decreasing energy expenditure. Here we reveal that the most important coral reef fishery species in the Indo-west Pacific, the large predatory coral trout Plectropomus leopardus (Serranidae), can behaviourally adjust food intake to maintain body-condition under elevated temperatures, and acclimate over time to consume larger meals. However, these increased energetic demands are unlikely to be met by adequate production at lower trophic levels, as smaller prey species are often the first to decline in response to climate-induced loss of live coral and structural complexity. Consequently, ubiquitous increases in energy consumption due to climate change will increase top-down competition for a dwindling biomass of prey, potentially distorting entire food webs and associated fisheries.

  10. Large predatory coral trout species unlikely to meet increasing energetic demands in a warming ocean

    KAUST Repository

    Johansen, J.L.; Pratchett, M.S.; Messmer, V.; Coker, Darren James; Tobin, A.J.; Hoey, A.S.

    2015-01-01

    Increased ocean temperature due to climate change is raising metabolic demands and energy requirements of marine ectotherms. If productivity of marine systems and fisheries are to persist, individual species must compensate for this demand through increasing energy acquisition or decreasing energy expenditure. Here we reveal that the most important coral reef fishery species in the Indo-west Pacific, the large predatory coral trout Plectropomus leopardus (Serranidae), can behaviourally adjust food intake to maintain body-condition under elevated temperatures, and acclimate over time to consume larger meals. However, these increased energetic demands are unlikely to be met by adequate production at lower trophic levels, as smaller prey species are often the first to decline in response to climate-induced loss of live coral and structural complexity. Consequently, ubiquitous increases in energy consumption due to climate change will increase top-down competition for a dwindling biomass of prey, potentially distorting entire food webs and associated fisheries.

  11. 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

  12. Stable isotopes reveal the effect of trawl fisheries on the diet of commercially exploited species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hinz, Hilmar; Moranta, Joan; Balestrini, Stephen; Sciberras, Marija; Pantin, Julia R; Monnington, James; Zalewski, Alex; Kaiser, Michel J; Sköld, Mattias; Jonsson, Patrik; Bastardie, Francois; Hiddink, Jan Geert

    2017-07-24

    Bottom trawling can change food availability for benthivorous demersal species by (i) changing benthic prey composition through physical seabed impacts and (ii) by removing overall benthic consumer biomass increasing the net availability of benthic prey for remaining individuals. Thus trawling may both negatively and positively influence the quantity and quality of food available. Using δ 13 C and δ 15 N we investigated potential diet changes of three commercially exploited species across trawling gradients in the Kattegat (plaice, dab and Norway lobster (Nephrops)) and the Irish Sea (Nephrops). In the Kattegat, trawling affected primarily the biomass of benthic consumers, lowering competition. Nephrops showed significant positive relationships for δ 13 C and a domed relationship for δ 15 N with trawling. In the Irish Sea, intense trawling had a negative effect on benthic prey. δ 13 C and δ 15 N thus showed the inverse relationships to those observed in the Kattegat. Plaice from the Kattegat, showed a significant relationship with trawling intensity for δ 13 C, but not for δ 15 N. No relationship was found for dab. Changes of δ 13 C and δ 15 N correlated with changes in condition of species. The results show that the removal of demersal competitors and benthos by trawling can change the diets of commercial species, ultimately affecting their body condition.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julia Salnicki

    2001-07-01

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

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. Urban and rural habitats differ in number and type of bird feeders and in bird species consuming supplementary food.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tryjanowski, Piotr; Skórka, Piotr; Sparks, Tim H; Biaduń, Waldemar; Brauze, Tomasz; Hetmański, Tomasz; Martyka, Rafał; Indykiewicz, Piotr; Myczko, Łukasz; Kunysz, Przemysław; Kawa, Piotr; Czyż, Stanisław; Czechowski, Paweł; Polakowski, Michał; Zduniak, Piotr; Jerzak, Leszek; Janiszewski, Tomasz; Goławski, Artur; Duduś, Leszek; Nowakowski, Jacek J; Wuczyński, Andrzej; Wysocki, Dariusz

    2015-10-01

    Bird feeding is one of the most widespread direct interactions between man and nature, and this has important social and environmental consequences. However, this activity can differ between rural and urban habitats, due to inter alia habitat structure, human behaviour and the composition of wintering bird communities. We counted birds in 156 squares (0.25 km(2) each) in December 2012 and again in January 2013 in locations in and around 26 towns and cities across Poland (in each urban area, we surveyed 3 squares and also 3 squares in nearby rural areas). At each count, we noted the number of bird feeders, the number of bird feeders with food, the type of feeders, additional food supplies potentially available for birds (bread offered by people, bins) and finally the birds themselves. In winter, urban and rural areas differ in the availability of food offered intentionally and unintentionally to birds by humans. Both types of food availability are higher in urban areas. Our findings suggest that different types of bird feeder support only those species specialized for that particular food type and this relationship is similar in urban and rural areas.

  17. Mammals consumed by bonobos (Pan paniscus): new data from the Iyondji forest, Tshuapa, Democratic Republic of the Congo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakamaki, Tetsuya; Maloueki, Ulrich; Bakaa, Batuafe; Bongoli, Lingomo; Kasalevo, Phila; Terada, Saeko; Furuichi, Takeshi

    2016-07-01

    Findings of regional variations in the behavioral patterns of non-human primates have led to the vigorous study of animal traditions (or culture), which contribute to a biological understanding of diversity in human cultures. Although our knowledge of behavioral variations of the bonobo (Pan paniscus) is limited compared with its sister species, the chimpanzee (P. troglodytes), variations in the prey of this species have been reported across study sites. This study describes evidence of mammals consumed by bonobos in the Iyondji site, which was established in 2010. We found evidence that Iyondji bonobos consumed duikers (Cephalophus dorsalis, C. monticola) and diurnal monkeys (Cercopithecus ascanius), which is notable because only anomalures (Anomalurus spp.) are consumed by bonobos in Wamba, a long-term study site established in 1973, located in an area adjacent to Iyondji. Moreover, bonobos do not transfer between the two populations due to the river between the sites. According to our census of duikers and diurnal monkeys, Iyondji bonobos appeared to encounter diurnal monkeys more frequently than did Wamba bonobos. Although humans have apparently had a more pronounced impact on the habitats in Wamba than on those in Iyondji, it remains unclear how such environmental conditions may have contributed to the differences in the prey consumed by bonobos in different sites. Our findings suggest that additional research at various sites could reveal the nature of the variations in the behavior of bonobos.

  18. Benthic prey fish assessment, Lake Ontario 2013

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William I Atlas

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

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. 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

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

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    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.

  4. Assessing breeding potential of peregrine falcons based on chlorinated hydrocarbon concentrations in prey

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Elliott, J.E. [Canadian Wildlife Service, Pacific Wildlife Research Centre, 5421 Robertson Rd., RR no. 1, Delta, British Columbia, V4K 3N2 (Canada)]. E-mail: john.elliott@ec.gc.ca; Miller, M.J. [Iolaire Ecological Consulting, 7899 Thrasher St., Mission, British Columbia, V2V 5H3 (Canada); Wilson, L.K. [Canadian Wildlife Service, Pacific Wildlife Research Centre, 5421 Robertson Rd., RR no. 1, Delta, British Columbia, V4K 3N2 (Canada)

    2005-03-01

    Peregrine falcons (Falco peregrinus) now breed successfully in most areas of North America from which they were previously extirpated. The loss during the mid-part of the last century of many of the world's peregrine populations was largely a consequence of impaired reproduction caused by the effects of DDE on eggshell quality and embryo hatchability. Population recovery has been attributed to re-introduction efforts, coupled with regulatory restrictions on the use of organochlorine pesticides. Peregrines have not returned to breed in some areas, such as the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia. That region has been extensively planted in fruit orchards which were treated annually with DDT during the early 1950s to the 1970s. Ongoing contamination of avian species, including potential peregrine prey, inhabiting orchards has been documented. In response to an initiative to release peregrines around the city of Kelowna in the Okanagan Valley, we collected potential peregrine prey species and analyzed whole bodies for chlorinated hydrocarbon residues. We used a simple bioaccumulation model to predict concentrations of DDE in peregrine eggs using concentrations in prey and estimates of dietary makeup as input. Peregrines would be expected to breed successfully only if they fed on a diet primarily of doves. Feeding on as little as 10% of other species such as starlings, robins, gulls and magpies would produce DDE concentrations in peregrine eggs greater than the threshold of 15 mg/kg. We also estimated the critical concentration of DDE in total prey to be about 0.5 mg/kg, one half of the previous most conservative criterion for peregrine prey. Concentrations of dieldrin and PCBs in peregrine prey are less than suggested critical levels. - Based on the level of DDE contamination of prey items, it seems unlikely that peregrine falcons could breed successfully throughout most of the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia.

  5. Fatal attraction: adaptations to prey on native frogs imperil snakes after invasion of toxic toads.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagman, Mattias; Phillips, Benjamin L; Shine, Richard

    2009-08-07

    Adaptations that enhance fitness in one situation can become liabilities if circumstances change. In tropical Australia, native snake species are vulnerable to the invasion of toxic cane toads. Death adders (Acanthophis praelongus) are ambush foragers that (i) attract vertebrate prey by caudal luring and (ii) handle anuran prey by killing the frog then waiting until the frog's chemical defences degrade before ingesting it. These tactics render death adders vulnerable to toxic cane toads (Bufo marinus), because toads elicit caudal luring more effectively than do native frogs, and are more readily attracted to the lure. Moreover, the strategy of delaying ingestion of a toad after the strike does not prevent fatal poisoning, because toad toxins (unlike those of native frogs) do not degrade shortly after the prey dies. In our laboratory and field trials, half of the death adders died after ingesting a toad, showing that the specialized predatory behaviours death adders use to capture and process prey render them vulnerable to this novel prey type. The toads' strong response to caudal luring also renders them less fit than native anurans (which largely ignored the lure): all toads bitten by adders died. Together, these results illustrate the dissonance in behavioural adaptations that can arise following the arrival of invasive species, and reveal the strong selection that occurs when mutually naive species first interact.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suet Wai Yuen

    2017-12-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristin N Marshall

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuen, Suet Wai; Bonebrake, Timothy C

    2017-01-01

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

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gil Wizen

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

  15. 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?

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-09-01

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

  17. CONSUMER BEHAVIOR

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ilie BUDICA

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available The study of consumers helps firms and organizations improve their marketing strategies by understanding issues such as: the psychology of how consumers think, feel, reason, and select between different alternatives; the psychology of how the consumer is influenced by his or her environment; the behavior of consumers while shopping or making other marketing decisions; limitations in consumer knowledge or information processing abilities influence decisions and marketing outcome; how consumer motivation and decision strategies differ between products that differ in their level of importance or interest that they entail for the consumer; and how marketers can adapt and improve their marketing campaigns and marketing strategies to more effectively reach the consumer.

  18. Diversity in thermal affinity among key piscivores buffers impacts of ocean warming on predator-prey interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Selden, Rebecca L; Batt, Ryan D; Saba, Vincent S; Pinsky, Malin L

    2018-01-01

    Asymmetries in responses to climate change have the potential to alter important predator-prey interactions, in part by altering the location and size of spatial refugia for prey. We evaluated the effect of ocean warming on interactions between four important piscivores and four of their prey in the U.S. Northeast Shelf by examining species overlap under historical conditions (1968-2014) and with a doubling in CO 2 . Because both predator and prey shift their distributions in response to changing ocean conditions, the net impact of warming or cooling on predator-prey interactions was not determined a priori from the range extent of either predator or prey alone. For Atlantic cod, an historically dominant piscivore in the region, we found that both historical and future warming led to a decline in the proportion of prey species' range it occupied and caused a potential reduction in its ability to exert top-down control on these prey. In contrast, the potential for overlap of spiny dogfish with prey species was enhanced by warming, expanding their importance as predators in this system. In sum, the decline in the ecological role for cod that began with overfishing in this ecosystem will likely be exacerbated by warming, but this loss may be counteracted by the rise in dominance of other piscivores with contrasting thermal preferences. Functional diversity in thermal affinity within the piscivore guild may therefore buffer against the impact of warming on marine ecosystems, suggesting a novel mechanism by which diversity confers resilience. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  19. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Y.; Zhu, W. Q.

    2008-04-01

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

  1. 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

  2. The threshold of coexistence and critical behaviour of a predator-prey cellular automaton

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arashiro, Everaldo; Tome, Tania

    2007-01-01

    We study a probabilistic cellular automaton to describe two population biology problems: the threshold of species coexistence in a predator-prey system and the spreading of an epidemic in a population. By carrying out mean-field approximations and numerical simulations we obtain the phase boundaries (thresholds) related to the transition between an active state, where prey and predators present a stable coexistence, and a prey absorbing state. The numerical estimates for the critical exponents show that the transition belongs to the directed percolation universality class. In the limit where the cellular automaton maps into a model for the spreading of an epidemic with immunization we observe a crossover from directed percolation class to the dynamic percolation class. Patterns of growing clusters related to species coexistence and spreading of epidemic are shown and discussed

  3. An exceptionally preserved Eocene shark and the rise of modern predator-prey interactions in the coral reef food web.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fanti, Federico; Minelli, Daniela; Conte, Gabriele Larocca; Miyashita, Tetsuto

    2016-01-01

    Following extreme climatic warming events, Eocene Lagerstätten document aquatic and terrestrial vertebrate faunas surprisingly similar to modern counterparts. This transition in marine systems is best documented in the earliest teleost-dominated coral reef assemblage of Pesciara di Bolca, northern Italy, from near the end of the Eocene Climatic Optimum. Its rich fauna shows similarities with that of the modern Great Barrier Reef in niche exploitation by and morphological disparity among teleost primary consumers. However, such paleoecological understanding has not transcended trophic levels above primary consumers, particularly in carcharhiniform sharks. We report an exceptionally preserved fossil school shark (Galeorhinus cuvieri) from Pesciara di Bolca. In addition to the spectacular preservation of soft tissues, including brain, muscles, and claspers, this male juvenile shark has stomach contents clearly identifiable as a sphyraenid acanthomorph (barracuda). This association provides evidence that a predator-prey relationship between Galeorhinus and Sphyraena in the modern coral reefs has roots in the Eocene. A growth curve of the living species of Galeorhinus fitted to G. cuvieri suggests that all specimens of G. cuvieri from the lagoonal deposits of Bolca represent sexually and somatically immature juveniles. The modern trophic association between higher-degree consumers (Galeorhinus and Sphyraena) has a counterpart in the Eocene Bolca, just as Bolca and the Great Barrier Reef show parallels among teleost primary consumers. Given the age of Bolca, trophic networks among consumers observed in modern coral reefs arose by the exit from the Climatic Optimum. The biased representation of juveniles suggests that the Bolca Lagerstätte served as a nursery habitat for G. cuvieri. Ultraviolet photography may be useful in probing for exceptional soft tissue preservation before common acid preparation methods.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matt J O'Callaghan

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2002-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-10-01

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

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edoardo Calizza

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

  11. Mercury and selenium ingestion rates of Atlantic leatherback sea turtles (Dermochelys coriacea): a cause for concern in this species?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perrault, Justin R

    2014-08-01

    Bodily accumulation of certain toxic elements can cause physiologic harm to marine organisms and be detrimental to their health and survival. The leatherback sea turtle (Dermochelys coriacea) is a broadly distributed marine reptile capable of consuming hundreds of kilograms of gelatinous zooplankton each day. Little is known about toxicants present in these prey items. Specifically, mercury is a known neurotoxin with no known essential function, while selenium detoxifies bodily mercury, but can be toxic at elevated concentrations. I collected 121 leatherback prey items (i.e., gelatinous zooplankton) from known leatherback foraging grounds and sampled the esophagus and stomach contents of stranded turtles. All samples were analyzed for total mercury and selenium. Additionally, two prey items and three liver samples were analyzed for methylmercury, the most toxic form of the element. Total mercury concentrations in prey items ranged from 0.2 to 17 ppb, while selenium concentrations ranged from concerning, especially since bodily mercury and selenium concentrations increase as organisms age. Because leatherbacks are long-lived and have large daily prey consumption rates, mercury and selenium loads may increase to physiologically harmful levels in this imperiled species. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. CONSUMER BEHAVIOR

    OpenAIRE

    Ilie BUDICA; Silvia PUIU; Bogdan Andrei BUDICA

    2010-01-01

    The study of consumers helps firms and organizations improve their marketing strategies by understanding issues such as: the psychology of how consumers think, feel, reason, and select between different alternatives; the psychology of how the consumer is influenced by his or her environment; the behavior of consumers while shopping or making other marketing decisions; limitations in consumer knowledge or information processing abilities influence decisions and marke...

  15. How well can fishes prey on zebra mussels in eastern North America?

    Science.gov (United States)

    French, John R. P.

    1993-01-01

    Literature on mollusk-eating fishes was reviewed to determine the potential for different species of fish to control zebra mussels in eastern North America. At least six species are potential predators of zebra mussels because they possess (1) both upper and lower pharyngeal teeth or (2) lower pharyngeal teeth and chewing pads located on the dorsal roof for crushing mollusk shells. Freshwater drum (Aplodinotus grunniens) and two centrarchids, redear sunfish (Lepomis microlophus) and pumpkinseed (L. gibbosus), possess both upper and lower pharyngeal teeth and are likely to consume more zebra mussels than fishes with only lower pharyngeal teeth. Only two catostomid species, copper and river redhorses (Moxostoma hubbsi and M. carinatum), have chewing pads that enable them to crush mollusks. The exotic omnivorous common carp (Cyprinus carpio), possessing lower teeth and a chewing pad, may prey on zebra mussels when aquatic insect larvae, its preferred food, become rare. Managing populations of drum, sunfishes and redhorses to reduce exploitation of large individuals and improve their habitats are suggested as means to intensify biological control of zebra mussels in eastern North America. Other Eurasian molluscivores, the roach (Rutilus rutilus) and the black carp (Mylopharyngodon piceus) should not be introduced into North America because research has shown repeatedly that an introduced biological controller usually does not forage for unwanted pests or reside only in preferred habitats of pests. Drum, sunfishes and redhorses should be preferred over these exotics as biological controllers of zebra mussels in North America because these native fishes will likely occupy newly established habitats of zebra mussels.

  16. Agriculture shapes the trophic niche of a bat preying on multiple pest arthropods across Europe: Evidence from DNA metabarcoding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aizpurua, Ostaizka; Budinski, Ivana; Georgiakakis, Panagiotis; Gopalakrishnan, Shyam; Ibañez, Carlos; Mata, Vanessa; Rebelo, Hugo; Russo, Danilo; Szodoray-Parádi, Farkas; Zhelyazkova, Violeta; Zrncic, Vida; Gilbert, M Thomas P; Alberdi, Antton

    2018-02-01

    The interaction between agricultural production and wildlife can shape, and even condition, the functioning of both systems. In this study, we i) explored the degree to which a widespread European bat, namely the common bent-wing bat Miniopterus schreibersii, consumes crop-damaging insects at a continental scale, and ii) tested whether its dietary niche is shaped by the extension and type of agricultural fields. We employed a dual-primer DNA metabarcoding approach to characterize arthropod 16S and COI DNA sequences within bat faecal pellets collected across 16 Southern European localities, to first characterize the bat species' dietary niche, second measure the incidence of agricultural pests across their ranges and third assess whether geographical dietary variation responds to climatic, landscape diversity, agriculture type and vegetation productivity factors. We detected 12 arthropod orders, among which lepidopterans were predominant. We identified >200 species, 44 of which are known to cause agricultural damage. Pest species were detected at all but one sampling site and in 94% of the analysed samples. Furthermore, the dietary diversity of M. schreibersii exhibited a negative linear relation with the area of intensive agricultural fields, thus suggesting crops restrict the dietary niche of bats to prey taxa associated with agricultural production within their foraging range. Overall, our results imply that M. schreibersii might be a valuable asset for biological pest suppression in a variety of agricultural productions and highlight the dynamic interplay between wildlife and agricultural systems. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  17. The helminth fauna of birds of prey (Accipitriformes, Falconiformes and Strigiformes) in the Netherlands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Borgsteede, F.H.M.; Okulewicz, A.; Zoun, P.E.F.; Okulewicz, J.

    2003-01-01

    Eighteen species of birds of prey in Netherlands were examined for helminth parasites: Accipitriformes - Accipiter gentilis (15 birds), A. nisus (9), Aquila pomarina (1), Buteo buteo (56), B. lagopus (4), Circaetus gallicus (2), Circus aeruginosus (2), C. cyaneus (3), Pernis apivorus (5);

  18. Feeding ecology of the culpeo in southern Ecuador: wild ungulates being the main prey

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Guntiñas, M.; Lozano, J.; Cisneros, R.; Narváez, C.; Armijos, J.

    2017-01-01

    This study details for the first time the food habits of the culpeo or Andean fox (Lycalopex culpaeus) in high areas of the Ecuadorian Andes during a complete annual cycle. Our objective was to identify prey species, calculate their contribution to diet and test for temporal variation. In total, 304

  19. Element patterns in albatrosses and petrels: Influence of trophic position, foraging range, and prey type

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anderson, O.R.J.; Phillips, R.A.; Shore, R.F.; McGill, R.A.R.; McDonald, R.A.; Bearhop, S.

    2010-01-01

    We investigated the concentrations of 22 essential and non-essential elements among a community of Procellariiformes (and their prey) to identify the extent to which trophic position and foraging range governed element accumulation. Stable isotope analysis (SIA) was used to characterise trophic (δ 15 N) and spatial patterns (δ 13 C) among species. Few consistent patterns were observed in element distributions among species and diet appeared to be highly influential in some instances. Arsenic levels in seabird red blood cells correlated with δ 15 N and δ 13 C, demonstrating the importance of trophic position and foraging range for arsenic distribution. Arsenic concentrations in prey varied significantly across taxa, and in the strength of association with δ 15 N values (trophic level). In most instances, element patterns in Procellariiformes showed the clearest separation among species, indicating that a combination of prey selection and other complex species-specific characteristics (e.g. moult patterns) were generally more important determining factors than trophic level per se. - Trophic position, foraging range, and prey type were found to influence element compositions and concentrations in Procellariiformes from South Georgia.

  20. Songbirds and Birds of Prey, Unit 6, Colorado Division of Wildlife.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hooper, Jon K.; Smith, Dwight R.

    This booklet on songbirds and birds of prey is part of a series developed to encourage youth to pursue environmental projects. The manual explains bird anatomy and physiology, bird watching, types of feeders and shelter, and bird identification. Descriptions of feeding, hunting, and nesting habits are given for many species of birds. Also,…

  1. Prey preference of the phytoseiid mite Typhlodromus pyri. 1. Response to volatile kairomones.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dicke, M.

    1988-01-01

    Using a Y-tube olfactometer, a study has been made of the response of females of the predatory miteTyphlodromus pyri Scheuten (Acarina: Phytoseiidae) to volatile kairomones of three prey species: the European red spider mite (Panonychus ulmi (Koch)), the two-spotted spider mite (Tetranychus urticae

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-06-01

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

  3. 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.

  4. 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...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennyffer Cruz

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Justin M J Travis

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

  7. Bio-Physical Coupling of Seabirds and Prey with a Dynamic River Plume

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, E. M.; Horne, J. K.; Zamon, J. E.; Adams, J.

    2016-02-01

    Freshwater plumes and plume density fronts are important regions of bio-physical coupling. On the west coast of North America, discharge from the Columbia River into the northern California Current creates a large, dynamic plume and multiple plume fronts. These nutrient-rich, productive waters fuel primary and secondary production, supporting a wide variety of small pelagic prey fish, large populations of Pacific salmon, seabirds, and marine mammals. To determine the influence of the Columbia River plume on marine predators, we analyzed at-sea seabird counts, in situ environmental data, surface trawl densities of prey fish, and acoustic backscatter measurements collected from research vessels in May and June 2010-2012. Concurrent distribution patterns of satellite-tagged sooty shearwaters (Puffinus griseus) and common murres (Uria aalge) were compared with seabird counts from ship surveys. To evaluate plume use by satellite-tagged birds, daily surface salinity values from SELFE hindcast models were extracted at each tag location. Both seabird species occurred in plume waters disproportionate to the total surveyed area, concentrating in the river plume when river flow and plume volume decreased. Murres were consistently within 20 km of the geographic mean center of the river plume. In contrast, shearwaters consistently occurred 100 km to the north of the plume center, where high densities of prey fish occur. Although acoustically detected prey also occurred in greater densities within the plume when volume decreased, surface catches of prey in the plume did not vary with changing plume conditions. Geographic indices of colocation (GIC) were low between murres and prey species caught in surface trawls, whereas GICs were >0.5 between shearwaters and prey species including squid (Loligo opalescens), juvenile Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha), and coho (O. kisutch) salmon. We conclude that the river plume and associated fronts are identifiable, predictable, and

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    LDB. Faria

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

  9. 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...

  10. Effects of trophic skewing of species richness on ecosystem functioning in a diverse marine community.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pamela L Reynolds

    Full Text Available Widespread overharvesting of top consumers of the world's ecosystems has "skewed" food webs, in terms of biomass and species richness, towards a generally greater domination at lower trophic levels. This skewing is exacerbated in locations where exotic species are predominantly low-trophic level consumers such as benthic macrophytes, detritivores, and filter feeders. However, in some systems where numerous exotic predators have been added, sometimes purposefully as in many freshwater systems, food webs are skewed in the opposite direction toward consumer dominance. Little is known about how such modifications to food web topology, e.g., changes in the ratio of predator to prey species richness, affect ecosystem functioning. We experimentally measured the effects of trophic skew on production in an estuarine food web by manipulating ratios of species richness across three trophic levels in experimental mesocosms. After 24 days, increasing macroalgal richness promoted both plant biomass and grazer abundance, although the positive effect on plant biomass disappeared in the presence of grazers. The strongest trophic cascade on the experimentally stocked macroalgae emerged in communities with a greater ratio of prey to predator richness (bottom-rich food webs, while stronger cascades on the accumulation of naturally colonizing algae (primarily microalgae with some early successional macroalgae that recruited and grew in the mesocosms generally emerged in communities with greater predator to prey richness (the more top-rich food webs. These results suggest that trophic skewing of species richness and overall changes in food web topology can influence marine community structure and food web dynamics in complex ways, emphasizing the need for multitrophic approaches to understand the consequences of marine extinctions and invasions.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sertorio, L.

    2000-01-01

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

  13. 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...

  14. 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...

  15. AFSC/RACE/SAP/Daly: Juvenile red and blue king crab prey preference experiment conducted in the Kodiak Lab in 2014

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This dataset is part of a laboratory experiment, which evaluated how varying ratios of prey species (year-0 blue and red king crabs) and habitat type (shell and...

  16. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-12-01

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

  18. A general consumer-resource population model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lafferty, Kevin D.; DeLeo, Giulio; Briggs, Cheryl J.; Dobson, Andrew P.; Gross, Thilo; Kuris, Armand M.

    2015-01-01

    Food-web dynamics arise from predator-prey, parasite-host, and herbivore-plant interactions. Models for such interactions include up to three consumer activity states (questing, attacking, consuming) and up to four resource response states (susceptible, exposed, ingested, resistant). Articulating these states into a general model allows for dissecting, comparing, and deriving consumer-resource models. We specify this general model for 11 generic consumer strategies that group mathematically into predators, parasites, and micropredators and then derive conditions for consumer success, including a universal saturating functional response. We further show how to use this framework to create simple models with a common mathematical lineage and transparent assumptions. Underlying assumptions, missing elements, and composite parameters are revealed when classic consumer-resource models are derived from the general model.

  19. 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...

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. Feeding on toxic prey. The praying mantis (Mantodea) as predator of poisonous butterfly and moth (Lepidoptera) caterpillars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mebs, Dietrich; Wunder, Cora; Pogoda, Werner; Toennes, Stefan W

    2017-06-01

    Caterpillars of the monarch butterfly, Danaus plexippus, feed on milkweed plants, Asclepias spp. (Apocynaceae), and sequester their toxic cardenolides aimed at deterring predators. Nevertheless, Chinese praying mantids, Tenodera sinensis, consume these caterpillars after removing the midgut ("gutting") including its plant content. In the present study, monarch caterpillars raised on A. curassavica, and those of the death's-head hawkmoth, Acherontia atropos, raised on Atropa belladonna containing atropine, were fed to mantids, Hierodula membranacea, which removed the gut of both species discarding about 59% of cardenolides and more than 90% of atropine, respectively. The ingestion of these compounds produced no apparent ill effects in the mantids and both were excreted with faeces. On the other hand, when mantids were fed with larvae of two moth species, Amata mogadorensis and Brahmaea certia, raised on non-poisonous host plants, the mantids showed the same gutting behaviour, thereby discarding indigestible plant material. As polar compounds, e.g. cardenolides and atropine, are not absorbed from the mantids midgut and do not pass the gut membrane, this enables the mantids to feed on toxic prey. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. 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.

  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. Consumer Finance

    OpenAIRE

    Peter Tufano

    2009-01-01

    Although consumer finance is a substantial element of the economy, it has had a smaller footprint within financial economics. In this review, I suggest a functional definition of the subfield of consumer finance, focusing on four key functions: payments, risk management, moving funds from today to tomorrow (saving/investing), and from tomorrow to today (borrowing). I provide data showing the economic importance of consumer finance in the American economy. I propose a historical explanation fo...

  7. Algal subsidies enhance invertebrate prey for threatened shorebirds: A novel conservation tool on ocean beaches?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlacher, Thomas A.; Hutton, Briony M.; Gilby, Ben L.; Porch, Nicholaus; Maguire, Grainne S.; Maslo, Brooke; Connolly, Rod M.; Olds, Andrew D.; Weston, Michael A.

    2017-05-01

    Birds breeding on ocean beaches are threatened globally, often requiring significant investments in species conservation and habitat management. Conservation actions typically encompass spatial and temporal threat reductions and protection of eggs and broods. Still, populations decline or recover only slowly, calling for fresh approaches in beach-bird conservation. Because energetic demands are critically high during the nesting and chick rearing phases, and chick survival is particularly low, supplementing prey to breeding birds and their offspring is theoretically attractive as a means to complement more traditional conservation measures. Prey for plovers and similar species on ocean beaches consists of invertebrates (e.g. small crustaceans, insects) many of which feed on stranded masses of plant material (e.g. kelp and seagrass) and use this 'wrack' as habitat. We added wrack to the upper beach where plovers nest and their chicks forage to test whether algal subsidies promote the abundance and diversity of their invertebrate prey. Adding wrack to the upper beach significantly increased the abundance and diversity of invertebrate prey items. At wrack subsidies greater than 50% of surface cover invertebrate assemblages became highly distinct compared with those that received smaller additions of wrack. Substantial (2-4 fold) increases in the abundance amphipods and isopods that are principal prey items for plovers drove these shifts. This proof-of-concept study demonstrates the feasibility of food provisioning for birds on ocean shores. Whilst novel, it is practicable, inexpensive and does not introduce further restrictions or man-made structures. Thus, it can meaningfully add to the broader arsenal of conservation tools for threatened species that are wholly reliant on sandy beaches as breeding and foraging habitats.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. Divergent trophic levels in two cryptic sibling bat species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siemers, Björn M; Greif, Stefan; Borissov, Ivailo; Voigt-Heucke, Silke L; Voigt, Christian C

    2011-05-01

    Changes in dietary preferences in animal species play a pivotal role in niche specialization. Here, we investigate how divergence of foraging behaviour affects the trophic position of animals and thereby their role for ecosystem processes. As a model, we used two closely related bat species, Myotis myotis and M. blythii oxygnathus, that are morphologically very similar and share the same roosts, but show clear behavioural divergence in habitat selection and foraging. Based on previous dietary studies on synanthropic populations in Central Europe, we hypothesised that M. myotis would mainly prey on predatory arthropods (i.e., secondary consumers) while M. blythii oxygnathus would eat herbivorous insects (i.e., primary consumers). We thus expected that the sibling bats would be at different trophic levels. We first conducted a validation experiment with captive bats in the laboratory and measured isotopic discrimination, i.e., the stepwise enrichment of heavy in relation to light isotopes between consumer and diet, in insectivorous bats for the first time. We then tested our trophic level hypothesis in the field at an ancient site of natural coexistence for the two species (Bulgaria, south-eastern Europe) using stable isotope analyses. As predicted, secondary consumer arthropods (carabid beetles; Coleoptera) were more enriched in (15)N than primary consumer arthropods (tettigoniids; Orthoptera), and accordingly wing tissue of M. myotis was more enriched in (15)N than tissue of M. blythii oxygnathus. According to a Bayesian mixing model, M. blythii oxygnathus indeed fed almost exclusively on primary consumers (98%), while M. myotis ate a mix of secondary (50%), but also, and to a considerable extent, primary consumers (50%). Our study highlights that morphologically almost identical, sympatric sibling species may forage at divergent trophic levels, and, thus may have different effects on ecosystem processes.

  13. Diversidad de frutos que consumen tres especies de murciélagos (Chiroptera: Phyllostomidae en la selva lacandona, Chiapas, México Diversity of fruits consumed by three species of bats (Chiroptera:Phyllostomidae in the Lacandona rainforest, Chiapas, Mexico

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alinka Olea-Wagner

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available Este estudio amplía el conocimiento de los hábitos alimentarios de 3 especies de murciélagos frugívoros como dispersores de semillas en 2 localidades de la selva alta perennifolia en la zona sur de la Reserva de la Biosfera de Montes Azules (REBIMA, y dentro del Ejido Playón de la Gloria (PDLG. Se estimó la abundancia relativa de Artibeus lituratus, Carollia perspicillata y Sturnira lilium, así como la diversidad y categoría sucesional de los frutos que consumen estas 3 especies en ambas localidades, mediante la identificación de semillas en las excretas. La división de especies vegetales por categoría sucesional mostró que A. lituratus y C. perspicillata consumen frutos tanto de especies pioneras como de especies persistentes, mientras que S. lilium únicamente se alimenta de especies pioneras. Durante la época seca A. lituratus y C. perspicillata presentaron una mayor diversidad y riqueza de especies consumidas dentro de la REBIMA, en tanto que en la época de lluvia mostraron mayor diversidad y riqueza dentro de PDLG; es decir, la diversidad de semillas colectadas por ambos dispersores responde a la época anual. S. lilium presentó mayor riqueza y diversidad dentro de PDLG a lo largo del muestreo indicando preferencia por frutos establecidos en estadios tempranos en la sucesión vegetal.This study examined the feeding habits of three species of frugivorous bats in relation to their role as seed dispersers in two localities, one in a Neotropical rainforest area in the southern part of the Montes Azules Biosphere Reserve (REBIMA, and the other in Ejido Playón de la Gloria (PDLG. We estimated the relative abundance of Artibeus lituratus, Carollia perspicillata and Sturnira lilium. We determined the diversity and the successional category of fruits consumed by these species in both localities through the identification of seeds in their feces. The plant species diversity based on successional category showed that A. lituratus and C

  14. A consumer-resource approach to the density-dependent population dynamics of mutualism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holland, J Nathaniel; DeAngelis, Donald L

    2010-05-01

    Like predation and competition, mutualism is now recognized as a consumer-resource (C-R) interaction, including, in particular, bi-directional (e.g., coral, plant-mycorrhizae) and uni-directional (e.g., ant-plant defense, plant-pollinator) C-R mutualisms. Here, we develop general theory for the density-dependent population dynamics of mutualism based on the C-R mechanism of interspecific interaction. To test the influence of C-R interactions on the dynamics and stability of bi- and uni-directional C-R mutualisms, we developed simple models that link consumer functional response of one mutualistic species with the resources supplied by another. Phase-plane analyses show that the ecological dynamics of C-R mutualisms are stable in general. Most transient behavior leads to an equilibrium of mutualistic coexistence, at which both species densities are greater than in the absence of interactions. However, due to the basic nature of C-R interactions, certain density-dependent conditions can lead to C-R dynamics characteristic of predator-prey interactions, in which one species overexploits and causes the other to go extinct. Consistent with empirical phenomena, these results suggest that the C-R interaction can provide a broad mechanism for understanding density-dependent population dynamics of mutualism. By unifying predation, competition, and mutualism under the common ecological framework of consumer-resource theory, we may also gain a better understanding of the universal features of interspecific interactions in general.

  15. A consumer-resource approach to the density-dependent population dynamics of mutualism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holland, J. Nathaniel; DeAngelis, Donald L.

    2010-01-01

    Like predation and competition, mutualism is now recognized as a consumer resource (C-R) interaction, including, in particular, bi-directional (e.g., coral, plant- mycorrhizae) and uni-directional (e.g., ant-plant defense, plant-pollinator) C-R mutualisms. Here, we develop general theory for the density-dependent population dynamics of mutualism based on the C-R mechanism of interspecific interaction. To test the influence of C-R interactions on the dynamics and stability of bi- and uni-directional C-R mutualisms, we developed simple models that link consumer functional response of one mutualistic species with the resources supplied by another. Phase-plane analyses show that the ecological dynamics of C-R mutualisms are stable in general. Most transient behavior leads to an equilibrium of mutualistic coexistence, at which both species densities are greater than in the absence of interactions. However, due to the basic nature of C-R interactions, certain density-dependent conditions can lead to C-R dynamics characteristic of predator-prey interactions, in which one species overexploits and causes the other to go extinct. Consistent with empirical phenomena, these results suggest that the C-R interaction can provide a broad mechanism for understanding density-dependent population dynamics of mutualism. By unifying predation, competition, and mutualism under the common ecological framework of consumer-resource theory, we may also gain a better understanding of the universal features of interspecific interactions in general.

  16. 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...

  17. Consumer Fetish

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Arnould, Eric; Cayla, Julien

    2015-01-01

    in the organizational fetishization of consumers, that is, how in the process of understanding and managing markets, a quasimagical fascination with amalgams of consumer voices, images, and artefacts comes about. We offer several contributions. First, we demonstrate the pertinence of (primarily anthropological...

  18. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

    Where apex predators move on the landscape influences ecosystem structure and function and is therefore key to effective landscape-level management and species-specific conservation. However the factors underlying predator distribution patterns within functional ecosystems are poorly understood. Predator movement should be sensitive to the spatial patterns of inter-specific competitors, spatial variation in prey density, and landscape attributes that increase individual prey vulnerability. We investigated the relative role of these fundamental factors on seasonal resource utilization by a globally endangered apex carnivore, the African lion (Panthera leo) in Tanzania's Serengeti National Park. Lion space use was represented by novel landscape-level, modified utilization distributions (termed "localized density distributions") created from telemetry relocations of individual lions from multiple neighbouring prides. Spatial patterns of inter-specific competitors were similarly determined from telemetry re-locations of spotted hyenas (Crocuta crocuta), this system's primary competitor for lions; prey distribution was derived from 18 months of detailed census data; and remote sensing data was used to represent relevant habitat attributes. Lion space use was consistently influenced by landscape attributes that increase individual prey vulnerability to predation. Wet season activity, when available prey were scarce, was concentrated near embankments, which provide ambush opportunities, and dry season activity, when available prey were abundant, near remaining water sources where prey occurrence is predictable. Lion space use patterns were positively associated with areas of high prey biomass, but only in the prey abundant dry season. Finally, at the broad scale of this analysis, lion and hyena space use was positively correlated in the comparatively prey-rich dry season and unrelated in the wet season, suggesting lion movement was unconstrained by the spatial patterns

  20. Effects of prey size and foraging mode on the ontogenetic change in feeding niche ofColostethus stepheni (Anura: Dendrobatidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lima, Albertina P; Moreira, Gloria

    1993-03-01

    The feeding niche ofColostethus stepheni changes during ontogeny. Small individuals eat small arthropods, principally mites and collembolans, and larger frogs eat bigger prey of other types. The shift in prey types is not a passive effect of selection for bigger prey. There is a strong relationship between electivity for prey types and frog size, independent of electivity for prey size. Four indices of general activity during foraging (number of movements, velocity, total area utilized and time spent moving), which are associated with electivity for prey types in adult frogs and lizards, did not predict the ontogenetic change in the diet ofC. stepheni. Apparently, the behavioral changes that cause the ontogenetic change inC. stepheni are more subtle than shifts in general activity during foraging. Studies of niche partitioning in communities of anurans that do not take into consideration ontogenetic changes in diet and seasonal changes in the size structures of populations present a partial and possibly erroneous picture of the potential interactions among species.

  1. 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.

  2. Prey Acceptability and Preference of Oenopia conglobata (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae, a Candidate for Biological Control in Urban Green Areas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Belén Lumbierres

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Oenopia conglobata is one of the most common ladybird species in urban green areas of the Mediterranean region. We have obtained data about its prey acceptability and prey preferences. In a laboratory experiment, we investigated the acceptability of seven aphid and one psyllid species as prey for this coccinellid: the aphids Chaitophorus populeti, Aphis gossypii, Aphis craccivora Monelliopsis caryae, Eucallipterus tiliae, Aphis nerii (on white poplar, pomegranate, false acacia, black walnut, lime, and oleander, respectively, and the psyllid Acizzia jamatonica on Persian silk tree. These species are abundant in urban green areas in the Mediterranean region. In addition, we tested the acceptability of Rhopalosiphum padi on barley, an aphid species easily reared in the laboratory. We also tested preferences of the predator in cafeteria experiments with three aphid species and one aphid and the psyllid. Adults and larvae of the coccinellid accepted all of the preys offered, except A. nerii, with a clear preference for M. caryae. The predator also showed preference for M. caryae when it was offered in a cafeteria experiment with other aphid species or with the psyllid. The aphid R. padi obtained a good acceptability and could be used for rearing O. conglobata in the laboratory.

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. Variation in the diet composition of a generalist predator, the red fox, in relation to season and density of main prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dell'Arte, Graziella Lucia; Laaksonen, Toni; Norrdahl, Kai; Korpimäki, Erkki

    2007-05-01

    Diet composition of a generalist predator, the red fox ( Vulpes vulpes) in relation to season (winter or summer) and abundance of multi-annually cyclic voles was studied in western Finland from 1983 to 1995. The proportion of scats (PS; a total of 58 scats) including each food category was calculated for each prey group. Microtus voles (the field vole M. agrestis and the sibling vole M. rossiaemeridionalis) were the main prey group of foxes (PS = 0.55) and they frequently occurred in the scats both in the winter and summer (PSs 0.50 and 0.62, respectively). There was a positive correlation between the PSs of Microtus voles in the winter diet of foxes and the density indices of these voles in the previous autumn. Other microtine rodents (the bank vole Clethrionomys glareolus, the water vole Arvicola terrestris and the muskrat Ondatra zibethicus) were consumed more in winter than in summer. The unusually high small mustelid predation by red foxes (PS = approx. 0.10) in our study area gives qualitative support for the hypothesis on the limiting impact of mammalian predators on least weasel and stoat populations. None of the important prey groups was preyed upon more at low than at high densities of main prey ( Microtus voles). This is consistent with the notion that red foxes are generalist predators that tend to opportunistically subsist on many prey groups. Among these prey groups, particularly hares and birds (including grouse), were frequently used as food by foxes.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Febri Anggriawan Widodo

    2017-07-01

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

  7. Trophic dynamics of few selected nearshore coastal finfishes with emphasis on prawns as prey item

    Science.gov (United States)

    Velip, Dinesh T.; Rivonker, Chandrashekher U.

    2018-06-01

    A trophic dynamic study of marine finfishes was undertaken based on stomach content analysis of twenty four species (N = 1742) collected from the nearshore coastal waters off Goa, west coast of India (15°29‧07.6″ N to 15°34‧44.3″ N, and 73°38‧10.5″ E to 73°46‧03.1″ E) during November 2010 to May 2013. This study aimed to thoroughly understand the feeding attributes of finfishes, and comprehend the possible effects of bycatch-related loss of biomass on trophic ecology. The study assessed diet preferences of the finfishes, their feeding guilds, significance of prawns as prey items, and the influence of mouth parts in prey selection. Altogether 84 prey taxa were identified from the stomach contents. Percentage Index of Relative Importance (IRI) values revealed that zooplankton (34.74), prawns (21.71), phytoplankton (19.80), and teleosts (18.62) were the major prey categories, and, among prawns, Metapenaeus dobsoni (%IRI = 19.34) was the single-most important prey item. Cluster analysis revealed three major trophic guilds namely 'teleost feeders' (mean Trophic Level (TrL) = 4.06 ± 0.42; mean B = 0.46 ± 0.24), 'zooplankton feeders' (mean TrL = 3.43 ± 0.29; mean B = 0.23 ± 0.13), and 'prawn feeders' (mean TrL = 3.86 ± 0.25; mean B = 0.48 ± 0.32), with low diet overlap among them. Principal Component Analysis of prey categories and mouth parts of finfishes suggested that zooplanktivory is associated with gill raker density as well as number of gill arches bearing rakers, whereas gape height determined the size of large-sized prey (fish and invertebrates). The study identified M. dobsoni, mysis and teleosts as highly influential prey for predatory finfishes. The present results could be useful to resolve broader issues in fisheries management.

  8. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  10. Carnivore repatriation and holarctic prey: narrowing the deficit in ecological effectiveness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berger, Joel

    2007-08-01

    The continuing global decline of large carnivores has catalyzed great interest in reintroduction to restore populations and to reestablish ecologically functional relationships. I used variation in the distribution of four Holarctic prey species and their behavior as proxies to investigate the pace and intensity by which responses are lost or reinvigorated by carnivore repatriation. By simulating the presence of wolves (Canis lupus), tigers (Panthera tigris), and brown bears (Ursus arctos) at 19 transcontinental sites, I assayed three metrics of prey performance in areas with no large terrestrial carnivores (the polar islands of Greenland and Svalbard), extant native carnivores (Eastern Siberian Shield, boreal Canada, and Alaska); and repatriated carnivores (the Yellowstone region and Rocky Mountains). The loss and reestablishment of large carnivores changed the ecological effectiveness of systems by (1) dampening immediate group benefits, diminishing awareness, and diminishing flight reaction in caribou (Rangifer tarandus) where predation was eliminated and (2) reinstituting sensitivity to carnivores by elk (Cervus elaphus) and moose (Alces alces) in the Yellowstone region to levels observed in Asian elk when sympatric with Siberian tigers and wolves or in Alaskan moose sympatric with wolves. Behavioral compensation to reintroduced carnivores occurred within a single generation, but only the vigilance reaction of bison (Bison bison) in Yellowstone exceeded that of their wolf-exposed conspecifics from boreal Canada. Beyond these overt responses by prey, snow depth and distance to suitably vegetated habitat was related to heightened vigilance in moose and elk, respectively, but only at sites with carnivores. These findings are insufficient to determine whether similar patterns might apply to other species or in areas with alien predators, and they suggest that the presumed excessive vulnerability of naïve prey to repatriated carnivores may be ill-founded. Although

  11. Consumer perceptions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ngapo, T. M.; Dransfield, E.; Martin, J. F.

    2004-01-01

    Consumer focus groups in France, England, Sweden and Denmark were used to obtain insights into the decision-making involved in the choice of fresh pork and attitudes towards today's pig production systems. Many positive perceptions of pork meat were evoked. Negative images of the production systems...... that there was no link between the negative images of production methods and their purchase behaviour. The groups were clearly confused and mistrusted the limited information available at the point of purchase. Careful consideration should be given to meat labelling, in particular taking account of the evident consumer...... ethnocentrism, to assure that such information is targeted to enhance consumer confidence....

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. Collective strategies and cyclic dominance in asymmetric predator-prey spatial games.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cazaubiel, Annette; Lütz, Alessandra F; Arenzon, Jeferson J

    2017-10-07

    Predators may attack isolated or grouped prey in a cooperative, collective way. Whether a gregarious behavior is advantageous to each species depends on several conditions and game theory is a useful tool to deal with such a problem. We here extend the Lett et al. (2004) to spatially distributed populations and compare the resulting behavior with their mean-field predictions for the coevolving densities of predator and prey strategies. Besides its richer behavior in the presence of spatial organization, we also show that the coexistence phase in which collective and individual strategies for each group are present is stable because of an effective, cyclic dominance mechanism similar to a well-studied generalization of the Rock-Paper-Scissors game with four species, a further example of how ubiquitous this coexistence mechanism is. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. The role of methyl salicylate in prey searching behavior of the predatory mite phytoseiulus persimilis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Boer, Jetske G; Dicke, Marcel

    2004-02-01

    Many carnivorous arthropods use herbivore-induced plant volatiles to locate their prey. These plant volatiles are blends of up to hundreds of compounds. It is often unknown which compounds in such a complex volatile blend represent the signal to the foraging carnivore. We studied the role of methyl salicylate (MeSA) as part of the volatile blend in the foraging behavior of the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis by using a Y-tube olfactometer. MeSA is one of the compounds released by lima bean, infested with Tetranychus urticae--a prey species of the predatory mite. MeSA attracted satiated predatory mites in a dose-dependent way with optimum attraction at a dose of 0.2 microg. Predatory mites did not discriminate between a prey-induced lima bean volatile blend (that contains MeSA) and a prey-induced volatile blend to which an extra amount of synthetic MeSA had been added. However, they preferred a MeSA-containing volatile blend (induced by T. urticae) to an otherwise similar but MeSA-free blend (induced by jasmonic acid). Adding synthetic MeSA to the MeSA-free blend significantly increased the mites' choice for this odor, suggesting an important role for MeSA. This study is a new step toward unraveling the role of herbivore-induced plant volatiles in the foraging behavior of predatory arthropods.

  16. A phase transition induces chaos in a predator-prey ecosystem with a dynamic fitness landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilpin, William; Feldman, Marcus W

    2017-07-01

    In many ecosystems, natural selection can occur quickly enough to influence the population dynamics and thus future selection. This suggests the importance of extending classical population dynamics models to include such eco-evolutionary processes. Here, we describe a predator-prey model in which the prey population growth depends on a prey density-dependent fitness landscape. We show that this two-species ecosystem is capable of exhibiting chaos even in the absence of external environmental variation or noise, and that the onset of chaotic dynamics is the result of the fitness landscape reversibly alternating between epochs of stabilizing and disruptive selection. We draw an analogy between the fitness function and the free energy in statistical mechanics, allowing us to use the physical theory of first-order phase transitions to understand the onset of rapid cycling in the chaotic predator-prey dynamics. We use quantitative techniques to study the relevance of our model to observational studies of complex ecosystems, finding that the evolution-driven chaotic dynamics confer community stability at the "edge of chaos" while creating a wide distribution of opportunities for speciation during epochs of disruptive selection-a potential observable signature of chaotic eco-evolutionary dynamics in experimental studies.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. Consumer Neoteny

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mathieu Alemany Oliver

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available This research explores childlike consumer behavior from an evolutionary perspective. More specifically, it uses the concept of neoteny to show that the retention of ancestors’ juvenile characteristics is related to specific behaviors. The results of factor analyses conducted on a UK sample (n = 499 and a French sample (n = 292 7 years later indicate four dimensions of childlike consumer behavior, namely, stimulus seeking, reality conflict, escapism, and control of aggression.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. 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.

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

    OpenAIRE

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

    2011-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Timmermann, Ute; Becker, Norbert

    2017-12-01

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

  6. 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

  7. Great Lakes prey fish populations: a cross-basin overview of status and trends based on bottom trawl surveys, 1978-2013

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorman, Owen T.; Weidel, Brian C.

    2014-01-01

    The assessment of Great Lakes prey fish stocks 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, trawl gear used, and the manner in which the trawl is towed (across or along bottom contours). Because each assessment is unique, population indices were standardized to the highest value for a time series within each lake for the following prey species: Cisco (Coregonus artedi), Bloater (C. hoyi), Rainbow Smelt (Osmerus mordax), Alewife (Alosa pseudoharengus), and Round Goby (Neogobius melanostomus). 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. There was basin-wide agreement in the trends of age-1 and older biomass for all prey species, with the highest concordance occurring for coregonids and Rainbow Smelt, and weaker concordance for Alewife. For coregonids, the highest biomass occurred from the mid-1980s to the mid-1990s. Rainbow Smelt biomass declined slowly and erratically during the last quarter century. Alewife biomass was generally higher from the early 1980s through 1990s across the Great Lakes, but since the early 1990s, trends have been divergent across the lakes, though there has been a downward trend in all lakes since 2005. Recently, Lake Huron has shown resurgence in biomass of Bloater, achieving 75% of its maximum record in 2012 due to recruitment of a succession of strong and moderate year classes that appeared in 2005-2011. Also, strong recruitment of the 2010 year class of Alewife has led to a sharp increase in biomass of Alewife in

  8. Factors mediating co-occurrence of an economically valuable introduced fish and its native frog prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hartman, Rosemary; Pope, Karen; Lawler, Sharon

    2014-06-01

    Habitat characteristics mediate predator-prey coexistence in many ecological systems but are seldom considered in species introductions. When economically important introduced predators are stocked despite known negative impacts on native species, understanding the role of refuges, landscape configurations, and community interactions can inform habitat management plans. We measured these factors in basins with introduced trout (Salmonidae) and the Cascades frog (Rana cascadae) to determine, which are responsible for observed patterns of co-occurrence of this economically important predator and its native prey. Large, vegetated shallows were strongly correlated to co-occurrence, and R. cascadae larvae occur in shallower water when fish are present, presumably to escape predation. The number of nearby breeding sites of R. cascadae was also correlated to co-occurrence, but only when the western toad (Anaxyrus boreas) was present. Because A. boreas larvae are unpalatable to fish and resemble R. cascadae, they may provide protection from trout via Batesian mimicry. Although rescue-effect dispersal from nearby populations may maintain co-occurrence, within-lake factors proved more important for predicting co-occurrence. Learning which factors allow co-occurrence between economically important introduced species and their native prey enables managers to make better-informed stocking decisions. © 2013 Society for Conservation Biology.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Caley

    2017-02-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-01-01

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

  11. 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...

  12. 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...

  13. Systematics of the Ceracis furcifer Species-Group (Coleoptera: Ciidae): The Specialized Consumers of the Blood-Red Bracket Fungus Pycnoporus sanguineus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pecci-Maddalena, Italo S. C.; Lopes-Andrade, Cristiano

    2017-01-01

    The Ceracis furcifer species-group (Coleoptera: Ciidae) originally comprised nine species names: Ceracis cornifer (Mellié, 1849); C. cylindricus (Brèthes, 1922); C. furcifer Mellié, 1849; C. hastifer (Mellié, 1849); C. monocerus Lawrence, 1967; C. ruficornis Pic, 1916; C. simplicicornis (Pic, 1916); C. semipallidus Pic, 1922 and C. unicornis Gorham, 1898. Ceracis semipallidus was synonymised with C. furcifer and then no further changes were made to the composition of the group. Here, we provide a taxonomic revision of the Ceracis furcifer species-group and new data on the geographic distribution and host fungi of the included species. Lectotypes are designated for C. cornifer, C. furcifer, C. hastifer, C. ruficornis, C. semipallidus and C. unicornis. As results we: (i) synonymise C. cylindricus, C. monocerus, C. simplicicornis, C. unicornis with C. cornifer; (ii) confirm the synonymy of C. semipallidus with C. furcifer; (iii) redescribe C. cornifer, C. hastifer, C. furcifer and C. ruficornis; and (iv) provide an identification key for species in the furcifer group. The frontoclypeal horn and body coloration showed great intraspecific variation. We show that species in the furcifer group have distributions wider than previously known and use mainly Pycnoporus sanguineus as host fungus. Species of the furcifer group are the only animals specialized in feeding on basidiomes of P. sanguineus. PMID:28714939

  14. 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'.

  15. Functional biology of sympatric krill species

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Agersted, Mette Dalgaard; Nielsen, Torkel Gissel

    2016-01-01

    Here we compare the functional biology of the sympatric krill species, Meganyctiphanes norvegica and Thysanoessa inermis. For M. norvegica, we investigated functional responses on diatoms and copepods, together with prey size spectra on plankton ,400 mm and copepods in the size range 500–3220 mm....... For T. inermis, only prey size spectrum on plankton ,400 mm were investigated. The prey size ranges of both species include organisms ,400 mm, and they consequently graze on several trophic levels. However, T. inermis feed on cells ,10 mm equivalent spherical diameter (ESD), whereas M. norvegica only...

  16. Native and non-native plants provide similar refuge to invertebrate prey, but less than artificial plants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Grutters, Bart; Pollux, B.J.A.; Verberk, W.C.E.P.; Bakker, E.S.

    2015-01-01

    Non-native species introductions are widespread and can affect ecosystem functioning by altering the structure of food webs. Invading plants often modify habitat structure, which may affect the suitability of vegetation as refuge and could thus impact predator-prey dynamics. Yet little is known

  17. 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...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M.M.H. Khan

    2012-02-01

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

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

    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.

  20. Assessment of prey overlap between a native (Polistes humilis) and an introduced (Vespula germanica) social wasp using morphology and phylogenetic analyses of 16S rDNA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kasper, Marta L; Reeson, Andrew F; Cooper, Steven J B; Perry, Kym D; Austin, Andrew D

    2004-07-01

    Abstract In newly invaded communities, interspecific competition is thought to play an important role in determining the success of the invader and its impact on the native community. In southern Australia, the native Polistes humilis was the predominant social wasp prior to the arrival of the exotic Vespula germanica (Hymenoptera: Vespidae). Both species forage for similar resources (water, pulp, carbohydrate and protein prey), and concerns have arisen about potential competition between them. The aim of this study was to identify the protein foods that these wasps feed on. As many prey items are masticated by these wasps to the degree that they cannot be identified using conventional means, morphological identification was complemented by sequencing fragments of the mitochondrial 16S rRNA gene. GenBank searches using blast and phylogenetic analyses were used to identify prey items to at least order level. The results were used to construct complete prey inventories for the two species. These indicate that while P. humilis is restricted to feeding on lepidopteran larvae, V. germanica collects a variety of prey of invertebrate and vertebrate origin. Calculated values of prey overlap between the two species are used to discuss the implications of V. germanica impacting on P. humilis. Results obtained are compared to those gained by solely 'conventional' methods, and the advantages of using DNA-based taxonomy in ecological studies are emphasized.

  1. 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.

  2. Assessing the impact on birds of prey of nine established wind farms in Thrace, NE Greece

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kret, Elzbieta; Carcamo, Beatriz; Zografou, Christina; Vasilakis, Dimitris

    2011-07-01

    Full text: In this study, we evaluate the impact on birds of prey of nine already established wind farms in Thrace, where a large scale wind farm development project of at least 930 MW is under development. Moreover, the area is acknowledged as of high ornithological interest, used for nesting, wintering and passage by rare territorial birds of prey, including the Near Threatened black vultures that use it for foraging. Finally, ca 50% of the wind farm development project area is covered by Natura 2000 sites. During the monitoring (2008-2010), carcass surveys were carried out in order to estimate mortality. In addition, avian space use surveys were carried out, in order to calculate indexes and to establish comparisons with a previous monitoring study run in 2004-05. In total, 14 birds of prey were found dead (one black vulture, four griffon vultures, one booted eagle, two short-toed eagles, one western marsh harrier, one Eurasian sparrow hawk, three common buzzards, one hawk species). The estimated mortality rate was 0.152 birds of prey (including vultures/turbine/year). Griffon vultures, black vultures and common buzzards comprised more than 50% of observations in the study area. Crossing densities between wind turbines were positively correlated with east exposition and the inclination of the slope, and the length of the wind turbines. gaps, while it was negatively correlated with north exposition. The use of the area was more intensive four years after the initial monitoring, but numbers of common buzzard observations drastically decreased. We suggest that during the planning phase of wind farms it is important to avoid steep slopes, east expositions and to take into account the distance between consecutive wind turbines. Our findings indicate that running a post-construction monitoring during only one year may not be enough to properly assess the impact of wind farms on birds of prey. (Author)

  3. 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...

  4. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeMars, Craig A; Boutin, Stan

    2018-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-01-01

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

  7. Acquired phototrophy in Mesodinium and Dinophysis – A review of cellular organization, prey selectivity, nutrient uptake and bioenergetics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Per Juel; Nielsen, Lasse Tor; Johnson, Matthew

    2013-01-01

    Acquired phototrophy, i.e. the use of chloroplasts from ingested prey, can be found among some species of dinoflagellates and ciliates. The best studied examples of this phenomenon in these groups are within the ciliate genus Mesodinium and the dinoflagellate genus Dinophysis, both ecologically...... growth. Both Mesodinium and Dinophysis spp. can survive for months in the light without food. The potential role for modeling in exploring the complex balance of phototrophy and phago-heterotrophy, and its ecological implications for the mixotroph and their prey, is discussed....

  8. 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.

  9. Circulating fat-soluble vitamin concentrations and nutrient composition of aquatic prey eaten by American oystercatchers (Haematopus palliatus) in the southeastern United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlson-Bremer, Daphne; Norton, Terry M.; Sanders, Felicia J.; Winn, Brad; Spinks, Mark D.; Glatt, Batsheva A.; Mazzaro, Lisa; Jodice, Patrick G.R.; Chen, Tai C.; Dierenfeld, Ellen S.

    2014-01-01

    The American oystercatcher (Haematopus palliatus palliatus) is currently listed as a species of high concern by the United States Shorebird Conservation Plan. Because nutritional status directly impacts overall health and reproduction of individuals and populations, adequate management of a wildlife population requires intimate knowledge of a species' diet and nutrient requirements. Fat-soluble vitamin concentrations in blood plasma obtained from American oystercatchers and proximate, vitamin, and mineral composition of various oystercatcher prey species were determined as baseline data to assess nutritional status and nutrient supply. Bird and prey species samples were collected from the Cape Romain region, South Carolina, USA, and the Altamaha River delta islands, Georgia, USA, where breeding populations appear relatively stable in recent years. Vitamin A levels in blood samples were higher than ranges reported as normal for domestic avian species, and vitamin D concentrations were lower than anticipated based on values observed in poultry. Vitamin E levels were within ranges previously reported for avian groups with broadly similar feeding niches such as herons, gulls, and terns (eg, aquatic/estuarine/marine). Prey species (oysters, mussels, clams, blood arks [Anadara ovalis], whelks [Busycon carica], false angel wings [Petricola pholadiformis]) were similar in water content to vertebrate prey, moderate to high in protein, and moderate to low in crude fat. Ash and macronutrient concentrations in prey species were high compared with requirements of carnivores or avian species. Prey items analyzed appear to meet nutritional requirements for oystercatchers, as estimated by extrapolation from domestic carnivores and poultry species; excesses, imbalances, and toxicities—particularly of minerals and fat-soluble vitamins—may warrant further investigation.

  10. Consumer Behavior

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hoyer, W.D.; MacInnis, D.J.; Pieters, R.

    2013-01-01

    CONSUMER BEHAVIOR combines a foundation in key concepts from marketing, psychology, sociology, and anthropology with a highly practical focus on real-world applications for today's business environment. The new edition of this popular, pioneering text incorporates the latest cutting-edge research

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1991-01-01

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

  14. 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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cat Horswill

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

  18. Modeling the marine resources consumed in raising a king penguin chick: an energetics approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halsey, L G; Butler, P J; Fahlman, A; Bost, C-A; Woakes, A J; Handrich, Y

    2008-01-01

    Accurate estimates of penguin energetics would represent an important contribution to our understanding of the trophodynamics of the Southern Ocean ecosystem and our ability to predict effects of environmental change on these species. We used the heart rate-rate of oxygen consumption technique to estimate rate of energy expenditure in adult king penguins raising a chick, in combination with data from the literature on changes in adult mass, chick energy requirements, and prey energy density. Our model estimated a variety of energetic costs and quantities of prey consumption related to raising a king penguin chick during the austral summer. The total energy requirements of a king penguin chick at the Crozet Archipelago from hatching until reaching a mass of 8 kg 90 d later is 271 MJ, representing the consumption of 38.4 kg of myctophid fish. A successfully breeding male requires 0.78 kg d(-1) of fish during the entirety of the incubation period and 1.14 kg d(-1) during the subsequent 90 d of chick rearing. Assuming the same energy requirements for females, the estimated 580,000 pairs of king penguins that breed successfully at Crozet each year, together with their chicks, consume a total of around 190,000 tons of fish during the incubation and summer rearing periods combined. If, due to depletion of fish stocks, the diet of breeders and chicks during the summer becomes identical to the typical diet of adults during the austral winter, the mass of prey required by both adults and chicks combined (where the chick still reaches 8 kg after 90 d) would increase by more than 25%.

  19. Mechanisms and feasibility of prey capture in ambush-feeding zooplankton

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kiørboe, Thomas; Andersen, Anders Peter; Langlois, Vincent

    2009-01-01

    Many marine zooplankters, particularly among copepods, are "ambush feeders" that passively wait for their prey and capture them by fast surprise attacks. This strategy must be very demanding in terms of muscle power and sensing capabilities, but the detailed mechanisms of the attacks are unknown...... of the examined species is close to this size limit and, in contrast to the larger species, uses its largest possible jump velocity for such attacks. The special requirements to ambush feeders with such attacks may explain why this strategy has evolved to perfection only a few times among planktonic suspension...... feeders ( few copepod families and chaetognaths)....

  20. 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...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ISHIKAWA, M.

    2008-04-01

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

  2. 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)

  3. Analysis of certain fatty acids and toxic metal bioaccumulation in various tissues of three fish species that are consumed by Turkish people.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaya, Gökçe; Türkoğlu, Semra

    2017-04-01

    Concentrations of toxic metals (Mn, Ni, Hg, Cd, Pb, Cr) in the muscle, skin, and liver of Mugil cephalus, Mullus barbatus, and Pagellus erythrinus which were purchased in large supermarkets of Elazig, and Mullus barbatus, which were caught on the sea of İskenderun Bay, Turkey, were analyzed. Fundamental analyses were carried out by inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) after samples were prepared by microwave digestion. Mean metal concentrations in different tissues were varied in the ranges of Cd 4-426, Cr 116-4458, Mn 141-24774, Hg 9-471, Pb 96-695, and Ni 68-6581 μg kg -1 , for wet weight. The investigated metal bioaccumulation in the muscles of fish species, in general, was lower than those in the liver and skin. This method was verified by NCS ZC73016 chicken trace element-certified reference material analysis. In addition, fatty acids in the muscles of three fish species were analyzed. According to the gas chromatography (GC) results of fatty acids, the monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) were found to be between 23.76 and 31.97%. The fatty acids' polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) ratio was found to be between 13.67 and 30.71% and saturated fatty acids ratios were determined in the range of 24.06-32.30%. In all fish species, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) ratio, which increase the value of these fish species, were high. These results show that these three fish species are good sources of fatty acids.

  4. 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...

  5. 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...

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Phytoseiidae of British Guyana with keys to species

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leon, de Donald

    1966-01-01

    The Phytoseiidae have diverse habits. Some are apparently obligate predators, preying on other mites or on insects, others are facultative predators feeding on fungus hyphae, pollen, or plant sap when no prey is at hand (CHANT 1959a), and one species, Anthoseius hebetis DE LEON (1959b), is found

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-05-01

    1. For large predators living in seasonal environments, patterns of predation are likely to vary among seasons because of related changes in prey vulnerability. Variation in prey vulnerability underlies the influence of predators on prey populations and the response of predators to seasonal variation in rates of biomass acquisition. Despite its importance, seasonal variation in predation is poorly understood. 2. We assessed seasonal variation in prey composition and kill rate for wolves Canis lupus living on the Northern Range (NR) of Yellowstone National Park. Our assessment was based on data collected over 14 winters (1995-2009) and five spring-summers between 2004 and 2009. 3. The species composition of wolf-killed prey and the age and sex composition of wolf-killed elk Cervus elaphus (the primary prey for NR wolves) varied among seasons. 4. One's understanding of predation depends critically on the metric used to quantify kill rate. For example, kill rate was greatest in summer when quantified as the number of ungulates acquired per wolf per day, and least during summer when kill rate was quantified as the biomass acquired per wolf per day. This finding contradicts previous research that suggests that rates of biomass acquisition for large terrestrial carnivores tend not to vary among seasons. 5. Kill rates were not well correlated among seasons. For example, knowing that early-winter kill rate is higher than average (compared with other early winters) provides little basis for anticipating whether kill rates a few months later during late winter will be higher or lower than average (compared with other late winters). This observation indicates how observing, for example, higher-than-average kill rates throughout any particular season is an unreliable basis for inferring that the year-round average kill rate would be higher than average. 6. Our work shows how a large carnivore living in a seasonal environment displays marked seasonal variation in

  12. 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

  13. Local extinction of a coral reef fish explained by inflexible prey choice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brooker, R. M.; Munday, P. L.; Brandl, S. J.; Jones, G. P.

    2014-12-01

    While global extinctions of marine species are infrequent, local extinctions are becoming common. However, the role of habitat degradation and resource specialisation in explaining local extinction is unknown. On coral reefs, coral bleaching is an increasingly frequent cause of coral mortality that can result in dramatic changes to coral community composition. Coral-associated fishes are often specialised on a limited suite of coral species and are therefore sensitive to these changes. This study documents the local extinction of a corallivorous reef fish, Oxymonacanthus longirostris, following a mass bleaching event that altered the species composition of associated coral communities. Local extinction only occurred on reefs that also completely lost a key prey species, Acropora millepora, even though coral cover remained high. In an experimental test, fish continued to select bleached A. millepora over the healthy, but less-preferred prey species that resisted bleaching. These results suggest that behavioural inflexibility may limit the ability of specialists to cope with even subtle changes to resource availability.

  14. 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.

  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. Consumer Behavior

    OpenAIRE

    Tatiana Bass

    2011-01-01

    This article reviews the role played by a producer of goods and services in consumer life. But because the manufacturer can achieve its purpose, to obtain profit and to attract more clients, he needs to know the consumer’s needs and preferences. Equally important for the producer is to find solutions for his products and services to be developed in conditions of maximum efficiency and become more aware of why they are buying, find out who, what, from where, when, how and how much to buy and h...

  17. 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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kaushik Ghose

    2006-05-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghose, Kaushik; Horiuchi, Timothy K; Krishnaprasad, P S; Moss, Cynthia F

    2006-05-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  1. Prey transport kinematics in Tupinambis teguixin and Varanus exanthematicus: conservation of feeding behavior in 'chemosensory-tongued' lizards.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elias, J A; McBrayer, L D; Reilly, S M

    2000-02-01

    Although lizards have been predicted to show extensive intraoral prey-processing behaviors, quantitative analyses of the types of prey-processing behavior they demonstrate and of their kinematics have been limited. The more basal lizard lineages (Iguanians) have undergone some study, but the prey-processing repertoires of crown taxa have not been thoroughly examined and quantitative comparisons of behaviors within or among species have not been made. In this study, the prey transport behavior of the savannah monitor (Varanus exanthematicus) and gold tegu (Tupinambis teguixin) are described. Although these two lineages have independently evolved tongues that are highly specialized for chemoreception, we found that they share the same three distinct types of transport behavior. These behavior patterns are (i) a purely inertial transport, (ii) an inertial transport with use of the tongue, and (iii) a non-inertial lingual transport. The tongue is used extensively in both the inertial and the purely lingual transport behaviors. More than 75 % of all transport behaviors involved tongue movements. These species appear to exhibit a conservation of feeding kinematics compared with patterns known for basal lizards. A hypothesis for the evolution of inertial feeding is proposed.

  2. 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....

  3. Consuming insects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Roos, Nanna; van Huis, A.

    2017-01-01

    as a part of a varied diet. They also have the potential to provide bioactive compounds that have health benefits beyond simple nutritional values, as is the case for other food groups such as fruits and vegetables. Various recent studies have indicated such bioactivity in different insect species....... The enormous number of edible insect species may be a source of novel bioactive compounds with health benefits addressing global health challenges. However, any identified health benefits need to be confirmed in human studies or in standardised assays accepted in health research prior to making health claims....

  4. Consumer Issues and Consumer Protection in Asia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Widdows, Richard; And Others

    1995-01-01

    Looks at themes of consumer interests in Asia and comments on the directions consumer policy is taking in that region. Outlines issues facing the region's consumers, describes evolving consumer protection mechanisms, and presents a model for promoting consumer interests in the region. (JOW)

  5. Zebra mussel beds: an effective feeding ground for Ponto-Caspian gobies or suitable shelter for their prey?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kobak, Jarosław; Poznańska, Małgorzata; Jermacz, Łukasz; Kakareko, Tomasz; Prądzynski, Daniel; Łodygowska, Małgorzata; Montowska, Karolina; Bącela-Spychalska, Karolina

    2016-01-01

    Aggregations of the Ponto-Caspian invasive zebra mussel ( Dreissena polymorpha ) constitute a suitable habitat for macroinvertebrates, considerably increasing their abundance and providing effective antipredator protection. Thus, the overall effect of a mussel bed on particular predator species may vary from positive to negative, depending on both prey density increase and predator ability to prey in a structurally complex habitat. Alien Ponto-Caspian goby fish are likely to be facilitated when introduced into new areas by zebra mussels, provided that they are capable of utilizing mussel beds as habitat and feeding grounds. We ran laboratory experiments to find which prey (chironomid larvae) densities (from ca. 500 to 2,000 individuals m -2 ) in a mussel bed make it a more beneficial feeding ground for the racer goby Babka gymnotrachelus (RG) and western tubenose goby Proterorhinus semilunaris (WTG) compared to sandy and stone substrata (containing the basic prey density of 500 ind. m -2 ). Moreover, we checked how food availability affects habitat selection by fish. Mussel beds became more suitable for fish than alternative mineral substrata when food abundance was at least two times higher (1,000 vs. 500 ind. m -2 ), regardless of fish size and species. WTG was associated with mussel beds regardless of its size and prey density, whereas RG switched to this habitat when it became a better feeding ground than alternative substrata. Larger RG exhibited a stronger affinity for mussels than small individuals. WTG fed more efficiently from a mussel bed at high food abundances than RG