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What determines the probability of surviving predator attacks in bird migration?: The relative importance of vigilance and fuel load
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Zoology, Ethology.
2004 (English)In: Journal of Theoretical Biology, ISSN 0022-5193, E-ISSN 1095-8541, Vol. 231, no 2, 223-227 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Migrating birds must accumulate fuel during their journeys and this fuel load should incur an increased risk of predation. Migratory fuelling should increase individual mass-dependent predation risk for two reasons. First, acquisition costs are connected to the increased time a bird must spend foraging to accumulate the fuel loads and the reduced predator detection that accompanies foraging. Second, birds with large fuel loads have been shown to suffer from impaired predator evasion which makes them more vulnerable when actually attacked. Here, I investigate the relative importance of these two aspects of mass-dependent predation risk and I have used published data and a hypothetical situation for a foraging bird to investigate how much migratory fuelling in terms of escape performance and natural variation in predator detection contribute to individual risk during foraging. Results suggest that for birds foraging close to protective cover the negative impact of fuel load on flight performance is very small, whereas variation in time to predator detection is of great importance for a bird's survival. However, the importance of flight performance for predation risk increases as the distance to cover increases. Hence, variation in predator detection (and vigilance) probably influences individual survival much more than migratory fuel load and consequently, to understand risk management during migration studies that focus on vigilance and predator detection during fuelling are much needed

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2004. Vol. 231, no 2, 223-227 p.
Keyword [en]
Bird migration, Mass-dependent predation risk, Predator detection, Escape ability, Predation
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Research subject
Animal Ecology; Ethology; Zoology
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-29088DOI: 10.1016/j.jtbi.2004.06.016OAI: diva2:229099
Available from: 2009-08-11 Created: 2009-08-11 Last updated: 2011-11-09Bibliographically approved

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Lind, Johan
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