Partitioning seasonal time: interactions among size, foraging activity and diet in leaf-litter frogs
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This study investigates hypotheses about partitioning of food resources among all species and several size classes in an assemblage of diurnal leaf-litter frogs in central Amazonia. All species in this assemblage change the type and size of prey as they grow. An ordination of diet composition was significantly associated with frog size and species-specific behaviour. However, a partial Mantel analysis indicated that species explained about 1.5 times more of the variation in diet overlap between individuals than frog size. Diet and foraging activity are correlated in juveniles, but not in adults, and this result holds whether species are considered as statistically independent observations or whether relationships are analysed using phylogenetically independent contrasts. This study showed that the partitioning of food resources between species changes with the population size structures. Thus, intraspecific and interspecific changes in diet, coupled with different patterns of juvenile recruitment, cause diet segregation among species due to temporal segregation of equivalent size classes.
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