Prey size selection and competition in the common shrew (Sorex araneus L.) View Full Text


Ontology type: schema:ScholarlyArticle     


Article Info

DATE

1981-06

AUTHORS

C. J. Barnard, C. A. J. Brown

ABSTRACT

We examine the idea that predators may sometimes use a rule of thumb (in this case prey size) to estimate relative prey profitability for optimizing diet selection. We provided adult common shrews with a choice between large and small pieces of mealworm, where large pieces were less profitable than small, because of handling time characteristics.The tendency for animals to prefer large prey depended on their encounter rate with large prey, but was not influenced by variation in encounter rate with small prey once a threshold encounter rate with large (about 0.03 encounters/s) had been reached.We also tested the hypothesis that a predator would be less selective when competing with other animals for food. Shrews showed a significant reduction in selectivity when an apparent ‘competitor’ was present during a test. We examine the idea that predators may sometimes use a rule of thumb (in this case prey size) to estimate relative prey profitability for optimizing diet selection. We provided adult common shrews with a choice between large and small pieces of mealworm, where large pieces were less profitable than small, because of handling time characteristics. The tendency for animals to prefer large prey depended on their encounter rate with large prey, but was not influenced by variation in encounter rate with small prey once a threshold encounter rate with large (about 0.03 encounters/s) had been reached. We also tested the hypothesis that a predator would be less selective when competing with other animals for food. Shrews showed a significant reduction in selectivity when an apparent ‘competitor’ was present during a test. More... »

PAGES

239-243

References to SciGraph publications

Journal

TITLE

Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology

ISSUE

3

VOLUME

8

Author Affiliations

Identifiers

URI

http://scigraph.springernature.com/pub.10.1007/bf00299836

DOI

http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/bf00299836

DIMENSIONS

https://app.dimensions.ai/details/publication/pub.1018783565


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