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Optimal prey selection in the Great Tit (Parus major)

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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1928/1687

Optimal prey selection in the Great Tit (Parus major)

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Title: Optimal prey selection in the Great Tit (Parus major)
Author: Krebs, John; Erichsen, Jonathan; Webber, Michael; Charnov, Eric
Subject(s): optimal foraging
great tit (Parus major)
Abstract: We tested the predictions of an optimal foraging model using five captive great tits as predators. The birds were presented with two prey types, profitable and unprofitable, on a moving belt. Both prey types were made out of mealworms. When the encounter rate with both prey types was low, the birds were non-selective, but at a higher encounter rate with profitable prey, the birds selectively ignored the less profitable type and did so irrespective of the encounter rate with them. These results are as predicted by the model, but the birds did not as predicted change from no selection in a single step. We suggest that this is because birds invest time sampling to determine the availability and profitability of different prey types.
Date: 1977-02
Publisher: Animal Behaviour
Citation: Krebs, J.R., J. Erichsen, M. Webber and E.L. Charnov. 1977. Optimal prey selection in the Great Tit (Parus major). Animal Behaviour 25:30-38
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1928/1687

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