Navigation Links
Predators ignore peculiar prey
Date:5/12/2009

Rare traits persist in a population because predators detect common forms of prey more easily. Researchers writing in the open access journal BMC Ecology found that birds will target salamanders that look like the majority even reversing their behavior in response to alterations in the ratio of a distinguishing trait.

Benjamin Fitzpatrick, from the University of Tennessee, worked with Kim Shook and Reuben Izally to study the effects of the prevalence of a dorsal stripe among a group of model salamanders on the foraging behavior of a flock of Blue Jays. He said, "Maintenance of variation is a classic paradox in evolution because both selection and drift tend to remove variation from populations. If one form has an advantage, such as being harder to spot, it should replace all others. Likewise, random drift alone will eventually result in loss of all but one form when there are no fitness differences. There must therefore be some advantage that allows unusual traits to persist".

The authors placed a selection of food-bearing model salamanders into a field for six days, with striped models outnumbering the unstriped by nine to one, or vice versa. On test days, the numbers were evened out. In each case, Blue Jays were more likely to attack the models that had been most prevalent over the previous six-day period. According to Fitzpatrick, "We believe that the different color forms represent different ways of blending in on the forest floor. Looking for something cryptic takes both concentration and practice. Predators concentrating on finding striped salamanders might not notice unstriped ones".

Fitzpatrick concludes, "Thus, the maintenance of color variation in terrestrial salamanders might be explained by the oldest and most obvious hypothesis rare form advantage arises because predators tend to overlook rare prey".


'/>"/>

Contact: Graeme Baldwin
graeme.baldwin@biomedcentral.com
44-203-192-2165
BioMed Central
Source:Eurekalert  

Page: 1

Related biology news :

1. Sexy or repulsive? Butterfly wings can be both to mates and predators
2. As super-predators, humans reshape their prey at super-natural speeds
3. Hind wings help butterflies make swift turns to evade predators, study finds
4. Photos reveal Myanmars large and small predators
5. Parasites outweigh predators in Pacific Coast estuaries
6. Study shows parasites outweigh predators
7. Sand dollar larvae use cloning to make change, confound predators
8. Zoologists challenge longstanding theory that eyespots mimic the eyes of predators enemies
9. Oceans fiercest predators now vulnerable to extinction
10. Slow-motion video study shows shrews are highly sophisticated predators
11. Predators and parasites may increase evolutionary stability
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Predators ignore peculiar prey
(Date:11/29/2016)... 2016   Neurotechnology , a provider ... technologies, today released FingerCell 3.0, a software ... that run on low-power, low-memory microcontrollers. FingerCell ... than 128KB of memory, enabling it to ... limited on-board resources, such as: mobile phones, ...
(Date:11/22/2016)... 2016 According to the new market research report ... Vein, Signature, Voice), Multi-Factor), Component (Hardware and Software), Function (Contact and Non-contact), ... market is expected to grow from USD 10.74 Billion in 2015 to ... 2016 and 2022. Continue Reading ... ...
(Date:11/17/2016)... , Nov. 17, 2016 Global Market Watch: ... Biobanks (Disease-Based Banks, Population-Based Banks and Academics) market is to ... for Private Biobanks shows the highest Compounded Annual Growth Rate ... region during the analysis period 2014-2020. North ... of 9.95% followed by Europe at ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:12/9/2016)... 9, 2016 /PRNewswire/ - Portage Biotech Inc. ("Portage" or ... pleased to announce that Biohaven has issued today the ... Connecticut (PRWEB) Dec 9, 2016 - Biohaven ... today that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration ("FDA") ... its drug candidate BHV-0223, an orally dissolving tablet being ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... PITTSBURGH , Dec. 8, 2016  The Board ... (PLSG), Western Pennsylvania,s only ... in leadership. In accordance with the succession plan developed ... several years, effective today, James (Jim) F. Jordan ... Executive Officer, succeeding John W. Manzetti , who ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... December 08, 2016 , ... Lajollacooks4u, San ... a banner year for team building events, new program offerings and company expansion. ... expanded earlier this year to include groups of over 30 people. Ever since, Lajollacooks4u ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... December 08, 2016 , ... ... platforms, the business of innovation is taking over sports. On Thursday, December 15th ... explore how technology is disrupting the playing field at a Smart Talk session. ...
Breaking Biology Technology: