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Foraging strategies of individual silky pocket mice over a boom-bust cycle in a stochastic dryland ecosystem.
Oecologia 2019; 190(3):569-578O

Abstract

Small mammals use multiple foraging strategies to compensate for fluctuating resource quality in stochastic environments. These strategies may lead to increased dietary overlap when competition for resources is strong. To quantify temporal contributions of high (C3) versus low quality (C4) resources in diets of silky pocket mice (Perognathus flavus), we used stable carbon isotope (δ13C) analysis of 1391 plasma samples collected over 2 years. Of these, 695 samples were from 170 individuals sampled ≥ 3 times across seasons or years, allowing us to assess changes in dietary breadth at the population and individual levels across a boom-bust population cycle. In 2014, the P. flavus population increased to 412 captures compared to 8 captures in prior and subsequent years, while populations of co-occurring small mammals remained stable. As intraspecific competition increased, the population-wide dietary niche of P. flavus did not change, but individual specialization increased significantly. During this period, ~ 27% (41/151) of individuals sampled specialized on C3 resources, which were abundant during the spring and previous fall seasons. Most of the remaining individuals were C3-C4 generalists (64%) (96/151), and only 9% (14/151) specialized on C4 resources. In 2015, P. flavus population density and resource availability declined, individual dietary breadth expanded (84% generalists), no C3 specialists were found, and specialization on C4 resources increased (16%). Our results demonstrate a high degree of inter-individual plasticity in P. flavus foraging strategies, which has implications for how this species will respond to environmental change that is predicted to decrease C3 resources in the future.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Biology, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM, 87131, USA.Department of Biology, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM, 87131, USA. scollins@unm.edu.Department of Biology, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM, 87131, USA.Departamento de Ciencias, Facultad de Artes Liberales, Universidad Adolfo Ibañez, Diagonal Las Torres 2640, Peñalolen, Santiago, Chile.Department of Biology, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM, 87131, USA.Department of Biology, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM, 87131, USA.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

31190119

Citation

Noble, Jennifer D., et al. "Foraging Strategies of Individual Silky Pocket Mice Over a Boom-bust Cycle in a Stochastic Dryland Ecosystem." Oecologia, vol. 190, no. 3, 2019, pp. 569-578.
Noble JD, Collins SL, Hallmark AJ, et al. Foraging strategies of individual silky pocket mice over a boom-bust cycle in a stochastic dryland ecosystem. Oecologia. 2019;190(3):569-578.
Noble, J. D., Collins, S. L., Hallmark, A. J., Maldonado, K., Wolf, B. O., & Newsome, S. D. (2019). Foraging strategies of individual silky pocket mice over a boom-bust cycle in a stochastic dryland ecosystem. Oecologia, 190(3), pp. 569-578. doi:10.1007/s00442-019-04432-x.
Noble JD, et al. Foraging Strategies of Individual Silky Pocket Mice Over a Boom-bust Cycle in a Stochastic Dryland Ecosystem. Oecologia. 2019;190(3):569-578. PubMed PMID: 31190119.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Foraging strategies of individual silky pocket mice over a boom-bust cycle in a stochastic dryland ecosystem. AU - Noble,Jennifer D, AU - Collins,Scott L, AU - Hallmark,Alesia J, AU - Maldonado,Karin, AU - Wolf,Blair O, AU - Newsome,Seth D, Y1 - 2019/06/12/ PY - 2018/11/18/received PY - 2019/06/07/accepted PY - 2019/6/14/pubmed PY - 2019/9/24/medline PY - 2019/6/14/entrez KW - Generalists KW - Intraspecific competition KW - Niche variation hypothesis KW - Perognathus flavus KW - Specialists SP - 569 EP - 578 JF - Oecologia JO - Oecologia VL - 190 IS - 3 N2 - Small mammals use multiple foraging strategies to compensate for fluctuating resource quality in stochastic environments. These strategies may lead to increased dietary overlap when competition for resources is strong. To quantify temporal contributions of high (C3) versus low quality (C4) resources in diets of silky pocket mice (Perognathus flavus), we used stable carbon isotope (δ13C) analysis of 1391 plasma samples collected over 2 years. Of these, 695 samples were from 170 individuals sampled ≥ 3 times across seasons or years, allowing us to assess changes in dietary breadth at the population and individual levels across a boom-bust population cycle. In 2014, the P. flavus population increased to 412 captures compared to 8 captures in prior and subsequent years, while populations of co-occurring small mammals remained stable. As intraspecific competition increased, the population-wide dietary niche of P. flavus did not change, but individual specialization increased significantly. During this period, ~ 27% (41/151) of individuals sampled specialized on C3 resources, which were abundant during the spring and previous fall seasons. Most of the remaining individuals were C3-C4 generalists (64%) (96/151), and only 9% (14/151) specialized on C4 resources. In 2015, P. flavus population density and resource availability declined, individual dietary breadth expanded (84% generalists), no C3 specialists were found, and specialization on C4 resources increased (16%). Our results demonstrate a high degree of inter-individual plasticity in P. flavus foraging strategies, which has implications for how this species will respond to environmental change that is predicted to decrease C3 resources in the future. SN - 1432-1939 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/31190119/Foraging_strategies_of_individual_silky_pocket_mice_over_a_boom_bust_cycle_in_a_stochastic_dryland_ecosystem_ L2 - https://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00442-019-04432-x DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -