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Influence of oceanographic structures on foraging strategies: Macaroni penguins at Crozet Islands

Bon, Cecile, Della Penna, Alice, d'Ovidio, Francesco, Arnould, John Y. P., Poupart, Timothee and Bost, Charles-Andre 2015, Influence of oceanographic structures on foraging strategies: Macaroni penguins at Crozet Islands, Movement ecology, vol. 3, pp. 1-11, doi: 10.1186/s40462-015-0057-2.

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Title Influence of oceanographic structures on foraging strategies: Macaroni penguins at Crozet Islands
Author(s) Bon, Cecile
Della Penna, Alice
d'Ovidio, Francesco
Arnould, John Y. P.ORCID iD for Arnould, John Y. P. orcid.org/0000-0003-1124-9330
Poupart, Timothee
Bost, Charles-Andre
Journal name Movement ecology
Volume number 3
Article ID 32
Start page 1
End page 11
Total pages 11
Publisher BioMed Central
Place of publication London, Eng.
Publication date 2015-09-21
ISSN 2051-3933
Summary BACKGROUND: In the open ocean, eddies and associated structures (fronts, filaments) have strong influences on the foraging activities of top-predators through the enhancement and the distribution of marine productivity, zooplankton and fish communities. Investigating how central place foragers, such as penguins, find and use these physical structures is crucial to better understanding their at-sea distribution. In the present study, we compared the travel heading and speed of the world's most abundant penguin, the Macaroni penguin (Eudyptes chrysolophus), with the distribution of surface physical structures (large-scale fronts, eddies and filaments).

RESULTS: The study was performed during December 2012 in the Crozet Archipelago (46.42° S; 51.86° E), South Indian Ocean. Six males at incubation stage were equipped with GPS loggers to get their trajectories. We used Eulerian and Lagrangian methods to locate large-scale fronts, mesoscale eddies (10-100 km) and part of the sub-mesoscale structures (<10 km, filaments) at the surface of the ocean. By comparing the positions of birds and these structures, we show that Macaroni penguins: i) target the sub Antarctic Front; ii) increase their foraging activity within a highly dynamic area, composed of eddy fields and filamentary structures; and iii) travel in the same direction as the predominant currents.

CONCLUSIONS: We show that penguins adjust their travel speed and movement during their whole trips in relation with the oceanographic structures visited. At a large scale, we hypothesize that Macaroni penguins target the sub Antarctic Front to find profitable patches of their main prey. At finer scale, Macaroni penguin may adopt a horizontal drifting behavior in strong currents, which could be a way to minimize costs of displacement.
Language eng
DOI 10.1186/s40462-015-0057-2
Field of Research 060201 Behavioural Ecology
060205 Marine and Estuarine Ecology (incl Marine Ichthyology)
Socio Economic Objective 970106 Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2015, The Authors
Free to Read? Yes
Use Rights Creative Commons Attribution licence
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30102349

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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.