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Category Text Publication
Reference Category Journals
DOI 10.1007/s00442-013-2651-6
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Title (Primary) Responses of a top and a meso predator and their prey to moon phases
Author Penteriani, V.; Kuparinen, A.; del Mar Delgado, M.; Palomares, F.; López-Bao, J.V.; Fedriani, J.M.; Calzada, J.; Moreno, S.; Villafuerte, R.; Campioni, L.; Lourenço, R.
Journal Oecologia
Year 2013
Department OESA
Volume 173
Issue 3
Page From 753
Page To 766
Language englisch
Keywords Carnivore coexistence; Intraguild predation; Lunar cycle; Predator–prey interactions; Top/ mesopredators
UFZ wide themes ru5
Abstract We compared movement patterns and rhythms of activity of a top predator, the Iberian lynx Lynx pardinus, a mesopredator, the red fox Vulpes vulpes, and their shared principal prey, the rabbit Oryctolagus cuniculus, in relation to moon phases. Because the three species are mostly nocturnal and crepuscular, we hypothesized that the shared prey would reduce its activity at most risky moon phases (i.e. during the brightest nights), but that fox, an intraguild prey of lynx, would avoid lynx activity peaks at the same time. Rabbits generally moved further from their core areas on darkest nights (i.e. new moon), using direct movements which minimize predation risk. Though rabbits responded to the increased predation risk by reducing their activity during the full moon, this response may require several days, and the moon effect we observed on the rabbits had, therefore, a temporal gap. Lynx activity patterns may be at least partially mirroring rabbit activity: around new moons, when rabbits moved furthest and were more active, lynxes reduced their travelling distances and their movements were concentrated in the core areas of their home ranges, which generally correspond to areas of high density of rabbits. Red foxes were more active during the darkest nights, when both the conditions for rabbit hunting were the best and lynxes moved less. On the one hand, foxes increased their activity when rabbits were further from their core areas and moved with more discrete displacements; on the other hand, fox activity in relation to the moon seemed to reduce dangerous encounters with its intraguild predator.
Persistent UFZ Identifier
Penteriani, V., Kuparinen, A., del Mar Delgado, M., Palomares, F., López-Bao, J.V., Fedriani, J.M., Calzada, J., Moreno, S., Villafuerte, R., Campioni, L., Lourenço, R. (2013):
Responses of a top and a meso predator and their prey to moon phases
Oecologia 173 (3), 753 - 766