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Nutritional niche separation between native roe deer and the nonnative fallow deer-a test of interspecific competition

Rautiainen, Heidi and Alm Bergvall, Ulrika and Felton, Annika and Tigabu, Mulualem and Kjellander, Petter (2021). Nutritional niche separation between native roe deer and the nonnative fallow deer-a test of interspecific competition. Mammal Research. 66 :3 , 443-455
[Research article]

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Abstract

On an evolutionary time scale, competition for food drives species formation by genetic adaptations to the environment and subsequent niche separation. On a short-term scale, animals use different strategies to meet their nutritional requirements, which ultimately influence their fitness. Understanding these adaptations in herbivores is especially important in temperate climates where animals have adapted both physiologically and behaviorally to seasonal variations in order to meet their nutritional requirements. The aim of this project was to investigate temporal variation in chemical composition of rumen content between two coexisting species of large herbivores, the native roe deer (Capreolus capreolus L.) and the introduced fallow deer (Dama dama L.), as well as a potential effect of competition on niche separation (interspecific differences in rumen nutrient composition). We analyzed 345 rumen samples collected from animals at one 95 km(2) estate, Koberg, in southwestern Sweden. Based on samples from all seasons, temporal variation in nutrient composition and interspecific differences between the two deer species were investigated under two contrasting fallow deer population densities. Results revealed that nutrient composition varied between species and across seasons. Roe deer had a higher proportion of rumen protein compared to fallow deer, with the highest proportions in spring. In contrast, fallow deer had a higher proportion of rumen hemicellulose compared to roe deer in spring, while no differences in nutrient composition between species could be found in fall. Overall, there were greater differences between the two species when fallow deer density was high and competition likely more pronounced than when fallow deer density was low. The results from this study can be used to understand interspecific competition and how it fosters niche separation between coexisting large herbivores.

Authors/Creators:Rautiainen, Heidi and Alm Bergvall, Ulrika and Felton, Annika and Tigabu, Mulualem and Kjellander, Petter
Title:Nutritional niche separation between native roe deer and the nonnative fallow deer-a test of interspecific competition
Series Name/Journal:Mammal Research
Year of publishing :2021
Volume:66
Number:3
Page range:443-455
Number of Pages:13
Publisher:SPRINGER HEIDELBERG
ISSN:2199-2401
Language:English
Publication Type:Research article
Article category:Scientific peer reviewed
Version:Published version
Copyright:Creative Commons: Attribution 4.0
Full Text Status:Public
Subjects:(A) Swedish standard research categories 2011 > 1 Natural sciences > 106 Biological Sciences (Medical to be 3 and Agricultural to be 4) > Ecology
Keywords:Cervidae, Niche separation, Nutritional ecology, Rumen contents
URN:NBN:urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-p-112139
Permanent URL:
http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-p-112139
Additional ID:
Type of IDID
DOI10.1007/s13364-021-00571-w
Web of Science (WoS)000645508500001
Scopus2-s2.0-85105453864
ID Code:28682
Faculty:VH - Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science
S - Faculty of Forest Sciences
NJ - Fakulteten för naturresurser och jordbruksvetenskap
Department:(VH) > Dept. of Animal Nutrition and Management
(NL, NJ) > Dept. of Ecology
(S) > Dept. of Ecology

(S) > Southern Swedish Forest Research Centre
Deposited By: SLUpub Connector
Deposited On:31 Aug 2022 08:25
Metadata Last Modified:31 Aug 2022 08:31

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