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Intra-and inter-individual variation in the foraging ecology of a generalist subantarctic seabird, the gentoo penguin

Camprasse, Elodie C. M., Cherel, Yves, Bustamante, Paco, Arnould, John P. Y. and Bost, Charles-Andre 2017, Intra-and inter-individual variation in the foraging ecology of a generalist subantarctic seabird, the gentoo penguin, Marine ecology progress series, vol. 578, pp. 227-242, doi: 10.3354/meps12151.

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Title Intra-and inter-individual variation in the foraging ecology of a generalist subantarctic seabird, the gentoo penguin
Author(s) Camprasse, Elodie C. M.
Cherel, Yves
Bustamante, Paco
Arnould, John P. Y.ORCID iD for Arnould, John P. Y. orcid.org/0000-0003-1124-9330
Bost, Charles-Andre
Journal name Marine ecology progress series
Volume number 578
Start page 227
End page 242
Total pages 16
Publisher Inter-Research
Place of publication Oldendorf, Germany
Publication date 2017-08-31
ISSN 0171-8630
Keyword(s) behavioural consistency
diving behaviour
feeding ecology
foraging behaviour
individual specialisations
pygoscelis papua
stable isotopes
Summary Individual specialisations have been suggested to improve foraging efficiency by optimising individual capacity (physiological and behavioural) and reducing intra-specific competition in exploiting prey resources. In this study, we investigated the inter-and intra-individual variation in behaviour in an opportunistic forager, the gentoo penguin Pygoscelis papua, at Kerguelen Island, southern Indian Ocean. We used complementary bio-logging and stable isotope analyses, coupled with morphometric measurements, to: (1) determine the inter-individual variation in morphology and foraging behaviour; (2) quantify intra-individual variation in foraging behaviou r; (3) investigate the links between consistency in foraging, distances travelled and body condition; and (4) determine if dietary specialisations exist and are maintained outside the breeding season. We show that this species exhibits a large inter-individual variation in foraging behaviour, with some individuals conducting very short trips close to the colony while others travelled considerably farther. Heavier individuals tended to forage in more distant locations, dive deeper and perform more benthic dives. Individual specialisation in behaviour was low to moderate at the population level, yet some individuals were very consistent. The rate of travel was not influenced by consistency, and there was a lack of correlation between body condition and foraging consistency. High inter-individual variation in feeding ecology and dietary specialisations outside of a single breeding season were observed, consistent with gentoo penguins being Type 'B' generalists (i.e. generalist populations composed of individuals each consuming a different range of foods).
Language eng
DOI 10.3354/meps12151
Field of Research 0602 Ecology
0608 Zoology
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2017, The Authors
Free to Read? Yes
Use Rights Creative Commons Attribution licence
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30102993

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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.