The relationship between intra–guild diet overlap and breeding in owls in Israel

Details

Serval ID
serval:BIB_FCC4F17800FB
Type
Article: article from journal or magazin.
Collection
Publications
Title
The relationship between intra–guild diet overlap and breeding in owls in Israel
Journal
Population Ecology
Author(s)
Charter M., Izhaki I., Roulin A.
ISSN
1438-390X
ISSN-L
1438-3896
Publication state
Published
Issued date
2018
Volume
60
Number
4
Pages
397-403
Language
english
Abstract
Even though intra-guild predators frequently prey on the same species, it is unclear whether diet overlap between two predators is a source of interspecific competition or whether predators simply use the same abundant prey resource. We measured the extent to which the diets of barn owls (Tyto alba) and long-eared owls (Asio otus) in Israel overlap and examined whether yearly differences in diet overlap correlate with barn owl breeding success. Pianka's index of niche overlap was positively related to barn owl population size but not to its breeding success. The number of breeding barn owls was higher when long-eared owls consumed more rodents, suggesting that diet overlap most likely increased when rodents became more abundant. Therefore, in Israel, when these two owl species prey more often on rodents, their diets are more similar and interspecific competition is reduced. Unlike sympatric populations in Europe, in years when rodents are less abundant in Israel long-eared owls switch to hunting alternative prey (e.g., birds), perhaps to avoid competition with barn owls.
Keywords
Asio otus, Breeding success, Diet overlap, Interspecific competition, Relative and fundamental niche, Tyto alba
Web of science
Create date
07/12/2018 19:53
Last modification date
20/08/2019 17:27
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