The effects of energy reserves and dominance on the use of social-foraging strategies in the house sparrow

Ádám Z. Lendvai, A. Likér, Z. Barta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

36 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In social animals, dominance rank often influences individuals' behaviour, but in most cases it is unknown how dominance modulates the effects of other phenotypic traits. We investigated the mutual effects of social dominance and the level of energy reserves on the use of social-foraging strategies in captive flocks of house sparrows, Passer domesticus. We used experimental wind exposure to manipulate overnight energy expenditure of dominant and subordinate individuals. In response to the experimental treatment dominants used scrounging (exploiting others' food finding) significantly more, whereas for subordinates there was only a moderate and nonsignificant increase in scrounging. Individual variability in the frequency of scrounging was higher in subordinates than in dominants and this difference between the dominance groups was unaffected by the treatment. These results suggest that individuals of different dominance status adopt different strategies: to cope with an energetically challenging situation, dominants behave rather uniformly by increasing further their preference for scrounging, whereas subordinates do not alter their tactic, but may rely on using scrounging opportunistically.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)747-752
Number of pages6
JournalAnimal Behaviour
Volume72
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2006

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Passer domesticus
foraging
social dominance
energy
energy expenditure
expenditure
flocks
food
animal
effect
exposure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics

Cite this

The effects of energy reserves and dominance on the use of social-foraging strategies in the house sparrow. / Lendvai, Ádám Z.; Likér, A.; Barta, Z.

In: Animal Behaviour, Vol. 72, No. 4, 10.2006, p. 747-752.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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