Short-term prey field lability constrains individual specialisation in resource selection and foraging site fidelity in a marine predator

Type Article
Date 2018-07
Language English
Author(s) Courbin Nicolas1, Besnard Aurelien1, Peron Clara2, Saraux Claire3, Fort Jerome4, Perret Samuel1, Tornos Jeremy1, Gremillet David1, 5
Affiliation(s) 1 : Univ Montpellier, Univ Paul Valery Montpellier, EPHE, CEFE,UMR 5175,CNRS, 1919 Route Mende, F-34293 Montpellier 5, France.
2 : Univ Montpellier, Marine Biodivers Exploitat & Conservat MARBEC, IRD, UMR 248, Pl Eugene Bataillon,Bat 24,CC093, F-34095 Montpellier 5, France.
3 : Inst Francais Rech Exploitat Mer IFREMER, UMR MARBEC 248, Ave Jean Monnet CS 3017, F-34203 Sete, France.
4 : Univ La Rochelle, Littoral Environm & Societes LIENSs, UMR 7266, CNRS, 2 Rue Olympe Gouges, F-17000 La Rochelle, France.
5 : Univ Cape Town, Fitzpatrick Inst, DST NRF Excellence Ctr, ZA-7701 Rondebosch, South Africa.
Source Ecology Letters (1461-023X) (Wiley), 2018-07 , Vol. 21 , N. 7 , P. 1043-1054
DOI 10.1111/ele.12970
WOS© Times Cited 29
Note Supplément S7 :
Keyword(s) Behavioural consistency, Calonectris diomedea, foraging site fidelity, resource selection, Scopoli's shearwater, temporal resource dynamic, Western Mediterranean

Spatio-temporally stable prey distributions coupled with individual foraging site fidelity are predicted to favour individual resource specialisation. Conversely, predators coping with dynamic prey distributions should diversify their individual diet and/or shift foraging areas to increase net intake. We studied individual specialisation in Scopoli’s shearwaters (Calonectris diomedea) from the highly dynamic Western Mediterranean, using daily prey distributions together with resource selection, site fidelity and trophic-level analyses. As hypothesised, we found dietary diversification, low foraging site fidelity and almost no individual specialisation in resource selection. Crucially, shearwaters switched daily foraging tactics, selecting areas with contrasting prey of varying trophic levels. Overall, information use and plastic resource selection of individuals with reduced short-term foraging site fidelity allow predators to overcome prey field lability. Our study is an essential step towards a better understanding of individual responses to enhanced environmental stochasticity driven by global changes, and of pathways favouring population persistence.

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Courbin Nicolas, Besnard Aurelien, Peron Clara, Saraux Claire, Fort Jerome, Perret Samuel, Tornos Jeremy, Gremillet David (2018). Short-term prey field lability constrains individual specialisation in resource selection and foraging site fidelity in a marine predator. Ecology Letters, 21(7), 1043-1054. Publisher's official version : , Open Access version :