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Diet selection and asocial learning: Natal habitat influence on lifelong foraging strategies in solitary large mammals

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Title: Diet selection and asocial learning: Natal habitat influence on lifelong foraging strategies in solitary large mammals
Authors: Jimbo, Mina Browse this author
Ishinazaka, Tsuyoshi Browse this author
Shirane, Yuri Browse this author
Umemura, Yoshihiro Browse this author
Yamanaka, Masami Browse this author
Uno, Hiroyuki Browse this author
Sashika, Mariko Browse this author →KAKEN DB
Tsubota, Toshio Browse this author →KAKEN DB
Shimozuru, Michito Browse this author →KAKEN DB
Keywords: asocial learning
brown bear
diet selection
foraging strategies
stable isotope analysis
Ursus arctos
Issue Date: 2-Jul-2022
Publisher: Ecological Society of America
Journal Title: Ecosphere
Volume: 13
Issue: 7
Start Page: e4105
Publisher DOI: 10.1002/ecs2.4105
Abstract: Exploring the process of diet selection will contribute to improvement in our understanding of animal foraging strategies. The overwhelming majority of ecological research on animal learning and foraging concentrates on how social learning influences the feeding styles of animals living in groups. In solitary animals that live long after independence from their mothers, foraging experience after independence is expected to have a significant influence on diet selection, but few studies have addressed this point. We used brown bears (Ursus arctos), which spend 1-2 years with their mothers before foraging alone, as a model species and investigated how their diet changed later in life. We estimated the diets of bears at the individual level by using stable isotope analysis of guard hairs and examined the factors that drove dietary variation. We also quantified the extent to which the diets of bears shifted by comparing the diets of bears at the time of capture with the average diet in their natal habitat. Our results indicated that females retained the average diet of their natal habitat, whereas the diets of males significantly changed more than 6 years after becoming independent from their mothers, when they reached physical maturity. Males were dependent on energy-rich marine animals at older ages regardless of their natal habitats, which we attribute to several factors, including habitat exploration, acquisition of foraging experience, and social dominance. Our results provide the first evidence, suggesting that foraging experience after independence influences diet selection later in life in solitary large mammals.
Type: article
Appears in Collections:獣医学院・獣医学研究院 (Graduate School of Veterinary Medicine / Faculty of Veterinary Medicine) > 雑誌発表論文等 (Peer-reviewed Journal Articles, etc)

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