04.06.2018 - 04.06.2018

    Melanie Boudreau: Predators, Prey and Progress: How 40 years of research has furthered our understanding of the snowshoe hare

    Department of Biology cordially invites all colleagues and students to lecture of guest lecturer Melanie Boudreau from Trent University (Kanada). The talk is titled "Predators, Prey and Progress: How 40 years of research has furthered our understanding of the snowshoe hare."

    Summary:
    Across most of their range, snowshoe hare (Lepus americanus) populations undergo regular cyclic fluctuations over a 9-11-year period with predators (mainly lynx (Lynx canadensis) and coyote (Canis latrans)) largely influence population declines. It is reasonable that low or declining hare numbers are the result of both consumptive and non-consumptive (i.e., risk) effects of predation as during decline years, hares experience ‘chronic stress’ that may translate to effects on physiology, behaviour, reproductive condition, and ultimately fitness. Our work aimed to gain a comprehensive understanding of how non-consumptive effects of predation manifest within snowshoe hare by manipulating predation risk for free-ranging individuals. Results show the extent to which predation risk translates across multiple axes (i.e., physiologically, energetically and behaviourally) in adults which leads to diminished survival in juveniles (e.g., via maternal abandonment). Our work clearly demonstrates the multi-faceted way in which prey respond to risk and how these responses can translate demographically in a natural setting.
    Summary:
    Across most of their range, snowshoe hare (Lepus americanus) populations undergo regular cyclic fluctuations over a 9-11-year period with predators (mainly lynx (Lynx canadensis) and coyote (Canis latrans)) largely influence population declines. It is reasonable that low or declining hare numbers are the result of both consumptive and non-consumptive (i.e., risk) effects of predation as during decline years, hares experience ‘chronic stress’ that may translate to effects on physiology, behaviour, reproductive condition, and ultimately fitness. Our work aimed to gain a comprehensive understanding of how non-consumptive effects of predation manifest within snowshoe hare by manipulating predation risk for free-ranging individuals. Results show the extent to which predation risk translates across multiple axes (i.e., physiologically, energetically and behaviourally) in adults which leads to diminished survival in juveniles (e.g., via maternal abandonment). Our work clearly demonstrates the multi-faceted way in which prey respond to risk and how these responses can translate demographically in a natural setting.

    The lecture takes place on June 4th 2018 at 2pm in S11.


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Last modified:  Vávrová Kristýna, 28.5.2018 14:18