domingo, 29 de marzo de 2015

Award !

Our PhD student Sergi Perez, awarded at the Marine Mammal Conservation Symposium held in Malta

His oral presentation about the suitability of an existing Marine Protected Area for
Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin Tursiops aduncus in southern Kenya received the award of being the best one among students.

Congratulations Sergi! 

miércoles, 25 de marzo de 2015

New publication on cannibalism

Cyrus, A.Z., Swiggs, J., Santidrian Tomillo, P., Paladino, F. V., Peters, W. S., 2015. Cannibalism causes size-dependent intraspecific predation pressure but does not trigger autotomy in the intertidal gastropod Agaronia propatula. Journal or Molluscan Studies doi:10.1093/mollus/eyv007

Abstract: Autotomy of the foot is readily inducible in the predatory marine gastropod Agaronia propatula (Conrad,1849), but the natural trigger of the autotomy response is obscure. Since cannibalistic predation hasbeen observed in the species while interspecific predation on A. propatula has not, it was hypothesized that autotomy in A. propatula helps to defend against cannibalism.
This hypothesis was tested in the present study. In our Costa Rican study population, autotomy as well as cannibalism occurred at significant rates; morphological indicators of foot regeneration suggested that 9–23% of the animals had autotomized previously, while about 5% of all observed predation attempts were directed at smaller conspecifics. However, autotomy in response to cannibalistic aggression was neither observed in the wild, nor did experimentally induced intraspecific aggression trigger autotomy. Successful cannibals generally were large and appeared to kill smaller conspecifics by suffocation in the metapodial pouch, but even then autotomy did not occur. These results refuted the hypothesis that A. propatula autotomizes to escape cannibalism. However, the size dependence of successful cannibalism on one hand, and the size spectrum of the population on the other, enabled a semiquantitative evaluation of the size-dependent intraspecific predation pressure in the population. The analysis indicated that in A. propatula different size classes represent ‘ecological species’ with distinct trophic roles. Since large A. propatula may actually reduce the total predation pressure on their heterospecific prey by cannibalizing smaller conspecifics, this size-dependent functional differentiation increases the complexity of the food-web around these snails.

lunes, 23 de marzo de 2015

Seminar this Wednesday !

G.E.P. seminar this Wednesday (25/03/2015) by Noelia Hernandez Muñoz: "Age-dependent vital rates in the Storm Petrel at Benidrom". Seminar Room (second floor, h10.00). Apologizes for the change. Photo. by A. Sanz

jueves, 19 de marzo de 2015

GEP on Frontiers' Facebook

The article by D. Oro on Seabirds and climate: knowledge, pitfalls and opportunities has been highlighted on Frontiers' Facebook !!! here
See also the other articles in the Research Topic on Seabirds and Climate edited by Dr. M. Frederiksen

lunes, 16 de marzo de 2015

Weekly Seminar on Thursday

Thursday 19th of March, at 11h00 in the Seminar Room,  Dr. Pilar Santidrian will talk about her work on leatherback turtles in Costa Rica   "Eastern Pacific leatherback turtles face extinction". 
See you there !!