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nest predation

Damian C Lettoof, Jessica A Lyons, Richard Shine, Grégoire Maniel, Martin Mayer, Daniel J D Natusch
Many invasive species exploit anthropogenically disturbed habitats, but most of those taxa evolved long before humans. Presumably, then, an ability to use natural (non-anthropogenic) disturbances pre-adapted invaders to a world later degraded by people. Studies on invasive species in naturally disturbed habitats thus can clarify the ancestral niche of invaders. In the Australian tropics, metallic starlings Aplonis metallica nest communally in emergent rainforest trees during the wet-season, and invasive cane toads Rhinella marina join other predators (mammals, birds, reptiles, and other anurans) to exploit the food resources beneath those trees...
August 2018: Current Zoology
Atsushi Ishimatsu, Hieu Van Mai, Karen L M Martin
Although fishes by nature are aquatic, many species reproduce in such a way that their embryos are exposed to air either occasionally or constantly during incubation. We examine the ecological context and review specific examples of reproduction by fishes at the air-water interface, including fishes that do and do not breathe air. Four modes of reproduction at the air-water interface are described across 18 teleost Orders, from fresh water, estuaries and sea water. Mode 1, the most common type of reproduction by fishes at the air-water interface, includes 21 Families of mostly marine teleosts that spawn in water onto a substrate surface, on vegetation, or into hollow objects such as shells that will later be continuously or occasionally exposed to air...
August 13, 2018: Integrative and Comparative Biology
K A Stiver, H K Kindsvater, N Tamburello, K L Heckman, J Klein, S H Alonzo
This paper describes how individual female ocellated wrasse Symphodus ocellatus distribute their spawning among males and nests in space and time. It is based on previously collected genetic data of larvae from ten different nests (used to reconstruct half and full-sibling groupings both within and among nests on multiple days) and behavioural data of marked females across the reproductive season. Both the genetic analyses and behavioural observations confirm that female S. ocellatus intentionally engage in multiple mating, by repeatedly spawning at the same nest on different days and at several different nests (up to 12 spawning events over 3 weeks), leading to mixed paternity among her young...
August 13, 2018: Journal of Fish Biology
Diego Anjos, Wesley Dáttilo, Kleber Del-Claro
Ant-diaspore interactions are directly related to fruit consumption, seed predation and dispersal, being determinant for the plant fitness. However, although abundant and diversified, these ecological interactions have been neglected in network studies. Understanding the structure of these networks is the first step in preserving these ecological functions. However, describing the network structure is not enough; we need to understand what mechanisms are behind the network patterns. In this study, for the first time, we describe the structure of the ant-diaspore network, considering only the interactions that can benefit plants, separating it into fruit consumption and diaspore removal networks in the Brazilian Savanna...
2018: PloS One
Malte Andersson, Matti Åhlund, Peter Waldeck
Conspecific brood parasitism (CBP) is a reproductive tactic in which parasitic females lay eggs in nests of other females of the same species that then raise the joint brood. Parasites benefit by increased reproduction, without costs of parental care for the parasitic eggs. CBP occurs in many egg-laying animals, among birds most often in species with large clutches and self-feeding young: two major factors facilitating successful parasitism. CBP is particularly common in waterfowl (Anatidae), a group with female-biased natal philopatry and locally related females...
August 2, 2018: Biological Reviews of the Cambridge Philosophical Society
Christine A Nalepa, Whitney G Swink
The relationship between predator and prey size was studied in the buprestid hunting wasp Cerceris fumipennis Say in eight widely distributed nesting aggregations in North Carolina, USA. Initial work indicated a significant linear relationship between wasp head width and wasp wet weight; thus, head width was used to estimate wasp body mass in subsequent studies. Prey loads of hunting females was studied by measuring the head width of the wasp, then identifying and weighing the prey item brought back to the nest...
July 19, 2018: Insects
Daniela Campobello, Spencer G Sealy
Avian nest defence, which is expected to serve both antiparasite and antipredator functions, may benefit or be detrimental to birds, although selective forces that potentially operate on nest defence have not been quantified as a whole. Together with fitness values, we analysed two traits of nest defence, intensity and plasticity, in two distantly related passerine species, yellow warbler (Setophaga petechia) in North America and reed warbler (Acrocephalus scirpaceus) in Europe, both favourite host species for brood parasites...
July 12, 2018: Scientific Reports
Fiona A Stewart, Alexander K Piel, Jurgi C Azkarate, Jill D Pruetz
OBJECTIVES: Great ape nests are hypothesized to aid safe, secure sleep via providing thermoregulation or protection from predators and vectors. We aimed to describe and investigate variation in chimpanzee nest architecture across two populations in response to local weather conditions. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We experimentally tested whether nests provide insulation by measuring heat loss within and outside nests, and took detailed measurements of the number, size, and type of materials used in nest building across two dry-habitat research sites (Fongoli, Senegal, and Issa, Tanzania)...
July 2018: American Journal of Physical Anthropology
Magdalena S Svensson, K A I Nekaris, Simon K Bearder, Caroline M Bettridge, Thomas M Butynski, Susan M Cheyne, Nabajit Das, Yvonne A de Jong, Averee M Luhrs, Lydia V Luncz, Simon T Maddock, Andrew Perkin, Elizabeth Pimley, Stephanie A Poindexter, Kathleen D Reinhardt, Denise Spaan, Danica J Stark, Carly R Starr, Vincent Nijman
OBJECTIVES: Synthesize information on sleep patterns, sleep site use, and daytime predation at sleep sites in lorisiforms of Asia and Africa (10 genera, 36 species), and infer patterns of evolution of sleep site selection. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We conducted fieldwork in 12 African and six Asian countries, collecting data on sleep sites, timing of sleep and predation during daytime. We obtained additional information from literature and through correspondence. Using a phylogenetic approach, we established ancestral states of sleep site selection in lorisiforms and traced their evolution...
July 2018: American Journal of Physical Anthropology
Thomas E Martin, Bret Tobalske, Margaret M Riordan, Samuel B Case, Kenneth P Dial
Should they stay or should they leave? The age at which young transition between life stages, such as living in a nest versus leaving it, differs among species and the reasons why are unclear. We show that offspring of songbird species that leave the nest at a younger age have less developed wings that cause poorer flight performance and greater mortality after fledging. Experimentally delayed fledging verified that older age and better developed wings provide benefits of reduced juvenile mortality. Young are differentially constrained in the age that they can stay in the nest and enjoy these fitness benefits because of differences among species in opposing predation costs while in the nest...
June 2018: Science Advances
Peter Santema, Bart Kempenaers
A central goal in evolutionary ecology is to identify factors that explain variation in reproductive success, i.e. in the number of offspring produced. In altricial birds, a substantial part of this variation is determined by the number of nestlings that die before fledging, but surprisingly little is known about the proximate causes of offspring mortality during the nestling period. We used a uniquely comprehensive dataset of parental nestbox visits from seven breeding seasons to investigate the association between parental behaviour and nestling mortality in a population of blue tits (Cyanistes caeruleus)...
June 12, 2018: Journal of Animal Ecology
Bridget Antze, Nicola Koper
Many birds rely on anti-predator communication to protect their nests; however, anthropogenic noise from industrial activities such as oil and gas development may disrupt acoustic communication. Here, we conducted acoustic playback experiments to determine whether Savannah sparrows ( Passerculus sandwichensis ) responded to conspecific alarm calls by delaying feeding visits, and whether this response was impaired by noise-producing natural gas compressor stations, generator- or grid-powered screw pump oil wells, and noise amplitude...
May 2018: Royal Society Open Science
Vincent Lamarre, Pierre Legagneux, Alastair Franke, Nicolas Casajus, Douglas C Currie, Dominique Berteaux, Joël Bêty
Indirect impacts of climate change, mediated by new species interactions (including pathogens or parasites) will likely be key drivers of biodiversity reorganization. In addition, direct effects of extreme weather events remain understudied. Simultaneous investigation of the significance of ectoparasites on host populations and extreme weather events is lacking, especially in the Arctic. Here we document the consequences of recent black fly outbreaks and extreme precipitation events on the reproductive output of an arctic top predator, the peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus tundrius) nesting at the northern range limit of ornithophilic black flies in Nunavut, Canada...
June 4, 2018: Scientific Reports
Sarah Guindre-Parker, Dustin R Rubenstein
The cost of parental care has long been thought to favor the evolution of cooperative breeding, because breeders can provide reduced parental care when aided by alloparents. Oxidative stress-the imbalance between reactive oxygen species and neutralizing antioxidants-has been proposed to mediate the cost of parental care, though results from empirical studies remain equivocal. We measured changes in oxidative status during reproduction in cooperatively breeding superb starlings (Lamprotornis superbus) to gain insight into the relationships among breeding status, parental care, and oxidative stress...
June 1, 2018: Oecologia
Markus Öst, Andreas Lindén, Patrik Karell, Satu Ramula, Mikael Kilpi
Intermittent breeding may be adaptive for long-lived species subjected to large accessory reproductive costs, but it may also reflect reduced adaptation to the environment, reducing population growth. Nevertheless, environmental influences on breeding propensity, particularly that of predation risk, remain poorly understood and difficult to study, because non-breeders are typically not identified. Female eiders Somateria mollissima from the Baltic Sea provide an excellent testbed, because nesting females have been exposed to intensifying predation and growing male bias that may increase female harassment...
June 1, 2018: Oecologia
Staffan Roos, Jennifer Smart, David W Gibbons, Jeremy D Wilson
The impact of increasing vertebrate predator numbers on bird populations is widely debated among the general public, game managers and conservationists across Europe. However, there are few systematic reviews of whether predation limits the population sizes of European bird species. Views on the impacts of predation are particularly polarised in the UK, probably because the UK has a globally exceptional culture of intensive, high-yield gamebird management where predator removal is the norm. In addition, most apex predators have been exterminated or much depleted in numbers, contributing to a widely held perception that the UK has high numbers of mesopredators...
May 22, 2018: Biological Reviews of the Cambridge Philosophical Society
David R Bowne, Bradley J Cosentino, Laurel J Anderson, Christopher P Bloch, Sandra Cooke, Patrick W Crumrine, Jason Dallas, Alexandra Doran, Jerald J Dosch, Daniel L Druckenbrod, Richard D Durtsche, Danielle Garneau, Kristen S Genet, Todd S Fredericksen, Peter A Kish, Mary Beth Kolozsvary, Frank T Kuserk, Erin S Lindquist, Carol Mankiewicz, James G March, Timothy J Muir, K Greg Murray, Madeline N Santulli, Frank J Sicignano, Peter D Smallwood, Rebecca A Urban, Kathy Winnett-Murray, Craig R Zimmermann
Landscape-scale alterations that accompany urbanization may negatively affect the population structure of wildlife species such as freshwater turtles. Changes to nesting sites and higher mortality rates due to vehicular collisions and increased predator populations may particularly affect immature turtles and mature female turtles. We hypothesized that the proportions of adult female and immature turtles in a population will negatively correlate with landscape urbanization. As a collaborative effort of the Ecological Research as Education Network (EREN), we sampled freshwater turtle populations in 11 states across the central and eastern United States...
May 20, 2018: Conservation Biology: the Journal of the Society for Conservation Biology
Matthew S Leslie, Phillip A Morin
Little is known about global patterns of genetic connectivity in pelagic dolphins, including how circumtropical pelagic dolphins spread globally following the rapid and recent radiation of the subfamily delphininae. In this study, we tested phylogeographic hypotheses for two circumtropical species, the spinner dolphin ( Stenella longirostris ) and the pantropical spotted dolphin ( Stenella attenuata ), using more than 3000 nuclear DNA single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in each species. Analyses for population structure indicated significant genetic differentiation between almost all subspecies and populations in both species...
April 2018: Royal Society Open Science
Joanna Burger, Robert T Zappalorti, Michael Gochfeld
To conserve threatened/endangered species, we need to understand the factors contributing to reproductive success and recruitment to reproductive stage. Obtaining this information is difficult for snakes because they are secretive, are not easy to locate at the same stage each year, and are sometimes sparsely distributed. We determined nest fate, hatchling growth and survival to age 5 years, and recruitment to breeding age of Northern Pine Snakes (Pituophis melanoleucus) in New Jersey Pine Barrens from 1986 to 2017...
2018: PloS One
K Leniowski, E Węgrzyn
Social monogamy with bi-parental care is the most common breeding pattern in birds, yet cooperation between mates has not been intensively studied to date. In this study we investigate synchronisation of parental behaviours in the blackcap Sylvia atricapilla, a species characterized by bi-parental care and high nest predation. We test the hypothesis that mates synchronize their behaviours to decrease total activity at the nest, which is known to affect predation rate in birds. We examine if blackcap parents synchronise their feeding trips more when nestlings are at the poikilothermic stage, and they may be more vulnerable to nest predation due to their inability to escape and survive outside the nest without parental brooding...
May 9, 2018: Scientific Reports
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