Bulletin of Mathematical Biology

, Volume 69, Issue 4, pp 1121–1146 | Cite as

Is Food Worth Fighting for? ESS’s in Mixed Populations of Kleptoparasites and Foragers

Original Paper

Abstract

We extend the game theoretic model of kleptoparasitism discussed in Broom et al. (2004), by considering a population of foragers consisting of two groups with different behaviours—those who forage and steal from other feeders, and those who only forage. We a sume that those who do not steal have a better foraging rate than those who are also looking out for opportunities to steal. We also allow either type to resist an attack or not resist. We look for Evolutionary Stable States, of either a mixture of the two behaviours, or where the whole population has just one of these behaviours. We find nine such ESS’s, dependent on the environmental parameters, although in fact only five of these are distinguishable. In general, we find that if the overall population density is low, food-stealing becomes less viable, and there is an ESS consisting of only foragers. Conversely, when there are many animals looking for, and finding, food, there is an ESS consisting of just kleptoparasites (which are also foraging). In between, an ESS will contain both pure-foragers and stealers. There is some empirical evidence of such behaviours.

We find that when there is a mixture of the two types, they must both have the same resistive behaviour. We can thus have some individuals challenging for food but not resisting challenges, and others not challenging and not resisting. This shows how aggressive behaviour may be context-dependent, as seen in practice.

Keywords

Kleptoparasitism Food-stealing Polymorphism Game theory Strategy 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Barnard, C.J., Sibly, R.M., 1981. Producers and scroungers: A general model and its application to captive flocks of house sparrows. Ani. Beha. 29, 543–555.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Brockmann, H.J., Barnard, C.J., 1979. Kleptoparasitism in birds. Anim. Beha. 27, 487–514.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Broom, M., Ruxton, G.D., 1998. Evolutionarily stable stealing: Game theory applied to kleptoparasitism. Beha. Ecol. 9, 397–403.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Broom, M., Ruxton, G.D., 2003. Evolutionarily stable kleptoparasitism: Consequences of different prey types. Beha. Ecol. 14, 23–33.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Broom, M., Luther, R.M., Ruxton, G.D., 2004. Resistance is useless? Extensions to the game theory of kleptoparasitism. Bull. Math. Biol. 66, 1645–1658.Google Scholar
  6. Dukas, R., 2002. Behavioural and ecological consequences of limited attention. Phil. Trans. R. Soc. Lond. B 357, 1539–1547.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Dukas, R., Ellner, S., 1993. Information Processing and prey detection. Ecology 74, 1337–1346.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Dukas, R., Kamil, A.C., 2001. Limited attention, The constraint underlying search images. Beha. Ecol. 12, 192–199.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Furness, R.W., 1987. Kleptoparasitism in seabirds. In: Croxall, J.P. (Ed.), Seabirds: Feeding ecology and role in marine ecosystems. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK.Google Scholar
  10. Holling, C.S., 1959. Some characteristics of simple types of predation and parasitism. Can. Entom. 91, 385–398.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Krebs, J.R., Davies, N.B., 1993. An introduction to Behavioural Ecology, 3rd edn. Blackwell Scientific, Oxford.Google Scholar
  12. Maynard-Smith, J., 1982. Evolution and the theory of games. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK.Google Scholar
  13. Ruxton, G.D., Broom, M., 1999. Evolution of kleptoparasitism as a war of attrition. J. Evol. Biol. 12, 755–759.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Shealer, D.A., Spendelow, J.A., 2002. Individual foraging strategies of kleptoparasitic Roseate Terns. Waterbirds 25, 436–441.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Stillman, R.A., Goss-Custard, J.D., Caldow, R.W.G., 1997. Modelling interference from basic foraging behaviour. J. Anim. Ecol. 66, 692–703.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Society for Mathematical Biology 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Roger M. Luther
    • 1
  • Mark Broom
    • 1
  • Graeme D. Ruxton
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of MathematicsUniversity of SussexFalmerUK
  2. 2.Division of Environmental and Evolutionary BiologyUniversity of GlasgowGlasgowUK

Personalised recommendations