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What you need is what you eat? Prey selection by the bat Myotis daubentonii.
Mol Ecol 2016; 25(7):1581-94ME

Abstract

Optimal foraging theory predicts that predators are selective when faced with abundant prey, but become less picky when prey gets sparse. Insectivorous bats in temperate regions are faced with the challenge of building up fat reserves vital for hibernation during a period of decreasing arthropod abundances. According to optimal foraging theory, prehibernating bats should adopt a less selective feeding behavior--yet empirical studies have revealed many apparently generalized species to be composed of specialist individuals. Targeting the diet of the bat Myotis daubentonii, we used a combination of molecular techniques to test for seasonal changes in prey selectivity and individual-level variation in prey preferences. DNA metabarcoding was used to characterize both the prey contents of bat droppings and the insect community available as prey. To test for dietary differences among M. daubentonii individuals, we used ten microsatellite loci to assign droppings to individual bats. The comparison between consumed and available prey revealed a preference for certain prey items regardless of availability. Nonbiting midges (Chironomidae) remained the most highly consumed prey at all times, despite a significant increase in the availability of black flies (Simuliidae) towards the end of the season. The bats sampled showed no evidence of individual specialization in dietary preferences. Overall, our approach offers little support for optimal foraging theory. Thus, it shows how novel combinations of genetic markers can be used to test general theory, targeting patterns at both the level of prey communities and individual predators.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Biology, University of Turku, Vesilinnantie 1, FI-20014, Turku, Finland. Spatial Foodweb Ecology Group, Department of Agricultural Sciences, University of Helsinki, Latokartanonkaari 5, FI-00014, Helsinki, Finland.Department of Biosciences, University of Helsinki, Viikinkaari 1, FI-00014, Helsinki, Finland.Department of Biology, University of Turku, Vesilinnantie 1, FI-20014, Turku, Finland. Department of Biology, Lund University, Sölvegatan 35, 223 62, Lund, Sweden.Department of Biology, University of Turku, Vesilinnantie 1, FI-20014, Turku, Finland.Spatial Foodweb Ecology Group, Department of Agricultural Sciences, University of Helsinki, Latokartanonkaari 5, FI-00014, Helsinki, Finland. Department of Ecology, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Box 7044, 750 07, Uppsala, Sweden.Department of Animal Ecology, Netherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW), PO Box 50, 6700AB, Wageningen, The Netherlands.Department of Biology, University of Turku, Vesilinnantie 1, FI-20014, Turku, Finland.Department of Biology, University of Turku, Vesilinnantie 1, FI-20014, Turku, Finland.Department of Biology, University of Turku, Vesilinnantie 1, FI-20014, Turku, Finland.Department of Biology, University of Turku, Vesilinnantie 1, FI-20014, Turku, Finland. Biology Department, Bucknell University, 1 Dent Drive, Lewisburg, PA, 17837, USA.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

26841188

Citation

Vesterinen, Eero J., et al. "What You Need Is what You Eat? Prey Selection By the Bat Myotis Daubentonii." Molecular Ecology, vol. 25, no. 7, 2016, pp. 1581-94.
Vesterinen EJ, Ruokolainen L, Wahlberg N, et al. What you need is what you eat? Prey selection by the bat Myotis daubentonii. Mol Ecol. 2016;25(7):1581-94.
Vesterinen, E. J., Ruokolainen, L., Wahlberg, N., Peña, C., Roslin, T., Laine, V. N., ... Lilley, T. M. (2016). What you need is what you eat? Prey selection by the bat Myotis daubentonii. Molecular Ecology, 25(7), pp. 1581-94. doi:10.1111/mec.13564.
Vesterinen EJ, et al. What You Need Is what You Eat? Prey Selection By the Bat Myotis Daubentonii. Mol Ecol. 2016;25(7):1581-94. PubMed PMID: 26841188.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - What you need is what you eat? Prey selection by the bat Myotis daubentonii. AU - Vesterinen,Eero J, AU - Ruokolainen,Lasse, AU - Wahlberg,Niklas, AU - Peña,Carlos, AU - Roslin,Tomas, AU - Laine,Veronika N, AU - Vasko,Ville, AU - Sääksjärvi,Ilari E, AU - Norrdahl,Kai, AU - Lilley,Thomas M, Y1 - 2016/03/14/ PY - 2015/08/04/received PY - 2016/01/08/revised PY - 2016/01/26/accepted PY - 2016/2/4/entrez PY - 2016/2/4/pubmed PY - 2016/8/9/medline KW - DNA barcoding KW - Myotis daubentonii KW - diet analysis KW - insects KW - population ecology KW - predator-prey interactions SP - 1581 EP - 94 JF - Molecular ecology JO - Mol. Ecol. VL - 25 IS - 7 N2 - Optimal foraging theory predicts that predators are selective when faced with abundant prey, but become less picky when prey gets sparse. Insectivorous bats in temperate regions are faced with the challenge of building up fat reserves vital for hibernation during a period of decreasing arthropod abundances. According to optimal foraging theory, prehibernating bats should adopt a less selective feeding behavior--yet empirical studies have revealed many apparently generalized species to be composed of specialist individuals. Targeting the diet of the bat Myotis daubentonii, we used a combination of molecular techniques to test for seasonal changes in prey selectivity and individual-level variation in prey preferences. DNA metabarcoding was used to characterize both the prey contents of bat droppings and the insect community available as prey. To test for dietary differences among M. daubentonii individuals, we used ten microsatellite loci to assign droppings to individual bats. The comparison between consumed and available prey revealed a preference for certain prey items regardless of availability. Nonbiting midges (Chironomidae) remained the most highly consumed prey at all times, despite a significant increase in the availability of black flies (Simuliidae) towards the end of the season. The bats sampled showed no evidence of individual specialization in dietary preferences. Overall, our approach offers little support for optimal foraging theory. Thus, it shows how novel combinations of genetic markers can be used to test general theory, targeting patterns at both the level of prey communities and individual predators. SN - 1365-294X UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/26841188/What_you_need_is_what_you_eat_Prey_selection_by_the_bat_Myotis_daubentonii_ L2 - https://doi.org/10.1111/mec.13564 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -