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Food use is affected by the experience of nest predation: implications for indirect predator effects on clutch size.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  23292453     Owner:  NLM     Status:  Publisher    
Abstract/OtherAbstract:
Indirect predator effects on prey demography include any effect not attributable to direct killing and can be mediated by perceived predation risk. Though perceived predation risk clearly affects foraging, few studies have yet demonstrated that it can chronically alter food intake to an extent that affects demography. Recent studies have used stable isotopes to gauge such chronic effects. We previously reported an indirect predator effect on the size of subsequent clutches laid by song sparrows (Melospiza melodia). Females that experienced frequent experimental nest predation laid smaller clutches and were in poorer physiological condition compared to females not subject to nest predation. Every female was provided with unlimited supplemental food that had a distinctive (13)C signature. Here, we report that frequent nest predation females had lower blood δ(13)C values, suggesting that the experience of nest predation caused them to eat less supplemental food. Females that ate less food gained less fat and were in poorer physiological condition, consistent with the effect on food use contributing to the indirect predator effect on clutch size. Tissue δ(15)N values corroborated that clutch size was not likely constrained by endogenous resources. Finally, we report that the process of egg production evidently affects egg δ(13)C values, and this may mask the source of nutrients to eggs. Our results indicate that perceived predation risk may impose food limitation on prey even where food is unlimited and such predator-induced food limitation ought to be added to direct killing when considering the total effect of predators on prey numbers.
Authors:
Liana Y Zanette; Keith A Hobson; Michael Clinchy; Marc Travers; Tony D Williams
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Publication Detail:
Type:  JOURNAL ARTICLE     Date:  2013-1-6
Journal Detail:
Title:  Oecologia     Volume:  -     ISSN:  1432-1939     ISO Abbreviation:  Oecologia     Publication Date:  2013 Jan 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2013-1-7     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0150372     Medline TA:  Oecologia     Country:  -    
Other Details:
Languages:  ENG     Pagination:  -     Citation Subset:  -    
Affiliation:
Department of Biology, University of Western Ontario, 1151 Richmond St, London, ON, N6A 5B7, Canada, lzanette@uwo.ca.
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