Event Title

Do Squirrels Let Birds Do Their Work for Them?

Presenter Information

Emma Lucore, Oberlin CollegeFollow

Location

King Building 321

Start Date

4-29-2016 4:00 PM

End Date

4-29-2016 5:15 PM

Abstract

Previous research shows that squirrels eavesdrop on avian species and increase their vigilance in response to alarms that signify predation risk. Vigilance behaviors detract from time that squirrels spend foraging or eating, so maintaining vigilance is costly. I am studying whether squirrels exhibit fewer vigilance responses in the presence of avian species that produce “squirrel-relevant” alarms by noting the frequency of vigilance responses when presented with recordings of chatter from avian mixed species flocks. If squirrels can rely on other species to relay information about predation risk, then they should be able to forage while keeping the potential cost of becoming prey relatively low.

Notes

Session III, Panel 12 - Natural Divisions of Labor: Studies in Field Biology
Moderator: Keith Tarvin, Professor of Biology

Major

Biology

Advisor(s)

Amy Margaris, Anthopology
Keith Tarvin, Biology

Project Mentor(s)

Keith Tarvin, Biology

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Apr 29th, 4:00 PM Apr 29th, 5:15 PM

Do Squirrels Let Birds Do Their Work for Them?

King Building 321

Previous research shows that squirrels eavesdrop on avian species and increase their vigilance in response to alarms that signify predation risk. Vigilance behaviors detract from time that squirrels spend foraging or eating, so maintaining vigilance is costly. I am studying whether squirrels exhibit fewer vigilance responses in the presence of avian species that produce “squirrel-relevant” alarms by noting the frequency of vigilance responses when presented with recordings of chatter from avian mixed species flocks. If squirrels can rely on other species to relay information about predation risk, then they should be able to forage while keeping the potential cost of becoming prey relatively low.