Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Crittercam captures crocodilian foraging behaviors; Video footage reveals novel insights into alligator's cryptic foraging behaviors

Date:
January 15, 2014
Source:
Public Library of Science
Summary:
Animal-borne camera reveals that alligators may attempt to capture prey most often at night, even though the calculated probability of catching prey is highest in the morning.

This is a crittercam unit attached to a 2.6 meter male American alligator.
Credit: J.C. Nifong; CC-BY

Animal-borne camera reveals that alligators may attempt to capture prey most often at night, even though the calculated probability of catching prey is highest in the morning, according to a study published in PLOS ONE on January 15, 2014 by James Nifong from the University of Florida and colleagues from other institutions.

Observing the behaviors of dangerous and cryptic predators like alligators is no easy task, so scientists used animal-borne cameras to monitor alligators capturing prey and their other activities. A total of fifteen adult alligators from Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge and Guana River in coastal Florida were equipped with Crittercam. Afterward, scientists retrieved the video data to determine the frequency and successes rates of alligator foraging behaviors throughout the day.

The video footage revealed that time of day significantly affected the frequency of attacks on prey, as well as the probability of capturing prey. Alligators most often attempted to capture prey during the night, but the researchers' calculated probability of successful capture was highest in the morning and sequentially lower during day, evening, and night, respectively. Position in the water -- submerged versus at the surface -- also significantly affected prey-capture success, with two-fold greater capture rate when submerged while attacking prey. These estimates are the first for the wild adult American alligator and may provide rare insight into crocodilian foraging behaviors.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Public Library of Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. James C. Nifong, Rachel L. Nifong, Brian R. Silliman, Russell H. Lowers, Louis J. Guillette, Jake M. Ferguson, Matthew Welsh, Kyler Abernathy, Greg Marshall. Animal-Borne Imaging Reveals Novel Insights into the Foraging Behaviors and Diel Activity of a Large-Bodied Apex Predator, the American Alligator (Alligator mississippiensis). PLoS ONE, 2014; 9 (1): e83953 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0083953

Cite This Page:

Public Library of Science. "Crittercam captures crocodilian foraging behaviors; Video footage reveals novel insights into alligator's cryptic foraging behaviors." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 January 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140115172830.htm>.
Public Library of Science. (2014, January 15). Crittercam captures crocodilian foraging behaviors; Video footage reveals novel insights into alligator's cryptic foraging behaviors. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140115172830.htm
Public Library of Science. "Crittercam captures crocodilian foraging behaviors; Video footage reveals novel insights into alligator's cryptic foraging behaviors." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140115172830.htm (accessed April 18, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Friday, April 18, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home

Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home

AP (Apr. 18, 2014) Dairy farmers and ethnic groups in Vermont are both benefiting from a unique collaborative effort that's feeding a growing need for fresh and affordable goat meat. (April 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
First Ever 'Female Penis' Discovered In Animal Kingdom

First Ever 'Female Penis' Discovered In Animal Kingdom

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) Not only are these newly discovered bugs' sex organs reversed, but they also mate for up to 70 hours. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Great British Farmland Boom

The Great British Farmland Boom

Reuters - Business Video Online (Apr. 17, 2014) Britain's troubled Co-operative Group is preparing to cash in on nearly 18,000 acres of farmland in one of the biggest UK land sales in decades. As Ivor Bennett reports, the market timing couldn't be better, with farmland prices soaring over 270 percent in the last 10 years. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Flamingo Frenzy Ahead of Zoo Construction

Flamingo Frenzy Ahead of Zoo Construction

AP (Apr. 17, 2014) With plenty of honking, flapping, and fluttering, more than three dozen Caribbean flamingos at Zoo Miami were rounded up today as the iconic exhibit was closed for renovations. (April 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins