Patterns of bird predation on reptiles in small woodland remnant edges in peri-urban north-western Sydney, Australia

Lyn Anderson, Shelley Burgin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The predator-prey relationship plays an integral role in community structure. In the presence of habitat fragmentation, the dynamic interaction among co-existing species may be disrupted. In this paper we investigated the interaction between small skinks resident in open woodland remnants and the predatory birds that cross-forage between the remnants and the surrounding peri-urban matrix. Skinks were found in significantly fewer numbers in the edge of remnants compared to their core. In contrast, predatory birds were in largest numbers at the edge compared to the core of remnants. We found that there was a strong negative correlation between skink numbers and predatory birds (individually and combined) consistent with higher predation pressure in the edge compared to the core of remnants. Strike rates on decoys that mimicked skinks were also higher in the edge compared to core habitats, consistent with higher predation rates in this edge habitat.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1039-1047
Number of pages9
JournalLandscape Ecology
Volume23
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2008
Externally publishedYes

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