Predation: Finding, Catching and Eating Food


Types Of Food

There is very little that one animal or another doesn't eat.

1. Other animals

2. Vegetables

3. Minerals

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Diversity of Hunting Methods

Gleaning: collecting left over crops from fields after a commercial harvest

Hovering: remianing in one place in the air 

Hawking (Aerial Foraging): prey is persued and caught during flight

Perch Swoops: waiting for prey to be visible and quickle swooping in to get it

Patrolling Flight: constantly covering an area of land watching for food

Diving: birds plunge into water to catch fish or other food

Skimming: lower mandible skims water for small fish

Dipping and Dabbling: surface feeding ducks and birds

Stalking then Striking: flightless predator with long neck and legs follow and strike their food

Picking and Probing: beaks specific to probing the food in water

Kleptoparasitism (Theft): stealing of already procured food

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Stages of Predation

1. Detection

2. Identification

3. Approach

4. Subjugation

5. Consumption

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Touch: Burrowing Species

         - African Golden Moles, Marsupial Moles, Atractaspis, Star-nosed Mole, Spiders

Smell: Many Mammals and Carrion Feeders

         - Polar Bear (smells seals 64km away), Star-nosed Mole (smell underwater)

         - Turkey Vulture and Great White Shark (detect blood at <1ppm)

Taste: Snakes and Monitor Lizards

Heat: Vipers can see infrared, and detect temperature rises of only 0.005'C

Eclectromagnetic Fields: Fish, Duck-billed Platypus, all organisms produce an electromagnetic field from their nervous system and predators can exploit this 

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Instinct and Learning

- Trial and error

- Learning off parents: passive and active teaching

Search Image

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Stalking: requires cover

Speed: Cheetah top speed over 70mph, Peregrine Falcon dives at over 200mph

Cooperative Hunting: Sometimes size doesn't matter

Aggressive Mimicry: Lures, Chemical Mimicry and Bait

Traps: Pits, Webs, Snares, Nets

Farming: or grow it yourself, for example Ants and Aphids

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Weapons: Teeth and Claws, Projectile Weapons, Electricity, Heat, Sound, Contriction

Venom: Jellyfish, Snakes, Invertes, Lizards and some Mammals

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Dealing with hard prey: Drill (Dogwhelk use radulas), Drop, Smash

Tool Use: Sticks, Stones

Adaptations for Eating: Teeth and Jaws

Digestion: Herbivores (long digestive systems), Caecum (reservoir for bacteria to break down cellulose), Ruminants (4 stomachs)

Detoxification: Meerkats and Banded Mongooses

Cooking: Reduces time spent eating and digesting

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