Caldow, R.W.G., Stillman, R. A., Durell, S. E. A. L. V. d., West, A. D., McGrorty, S., Goss-Custard, J. D., Wood, P.J. and Humphreys, J., 2007. Benefits to Shorebirds from Invasion of a Non-Native Shellfish. Proceedings of The Royal Society B Biological Sciences, 274 (1616), pp. 1449-1455.
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Official URL: http://journals.royalsociety.org/content/926577vg4...
Introductions of non-native species are seen as major threats to ecosystem function and biodiversity. However, invasions of aquatic habitats by non-native species are known to benefit generalist consumers that exhibit dietary switches and prey upon the exotic species in addition to or in preference to native ones. There is, however, little knowledge concerning the population-level implications of such dietary changes. Here, we show that the introduction of the Manila clam Tapes philippinarum into European coastal waters has presented the Eurasian oystercatcher Haematopus ostralegus ostralegus with a new food resource and resulted in a previously unknown predator–prey interaction between these species. We demonstrate, with an individuals-based simulation model, that the presence of this non-native shellfish, even at the current low density, has reduced the predicted over-winter mortality of oystercatchers at one recently invaded site. Further increases in clam population density are predicted to have even more pronounced effects on the density dependence of oystercatcher over-winter mortality. These results suggest that if the Manila clam were to spread around European coastal waters, a process which is likely to be facilitated by global warming, this could have considerable benefits for many shellfish-eating shorebird populations.
|Subjects:||Geography and Environmental Studies|
Science > Biology and Botany
|Group:||School of Applied Sciences > Centre for Conservation, Ecology and Environmental Change|
|Deposited By:||INVALID USER|
|Deposited On:||25 Jan 2009 10:00|
|Last Modified:||07 Mar 2013 15:03|
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