Predator and scavenger movements as opportunities for pathogen spread among endangered seabirds

Infectious diseases have recently been acknowledged as an important threat for wild populations, notably seabirds. In order to implement efficient surveillance and management programmes, it is critical to look beyond the sick individuals to identify the individuals or species involved in cryptic epidemiological processes, such as pathogen spread. Amandine Gamble et al. summarise their recent research on the potential role of predators and scavengers in … Continue reading Predator and scavenger movements as opportunities for pathogen spread among endangered seabirds

Anyone’s game: do gamebird releases lead to increases in generalist predators?

In their new research, published this week, Henrietta Pringle and colleagues recommend the recording of gamebird releases and predator numbers. Every year, 40-50 million non-native gamebirds (ring-necked pheasant Phasianus colchius and red-legged partridge Alectoris rufa) are released in the UK, equivalent to around 46000 tonnes of biomass. Fewer than half these birds are shot, with the remaining birds predated, scavenged or surviving to breed or … Continue reading Anyone’s game: do gamebird releases lead to increases in generalist predators?

The orchard guardian: pest vole control by owls

Following the recently published article, Effectiveness of vole control by owls in apple orchards, Chie Murano highlights the vital role predators such as Ural owls play in protecting farmers’ produce from pests.   Voles are one of the world’s major pests. For the past few decades, Japanese farmers, especially apple producers have suffered from escalating levels of apple tree damage caused by the Japanese field … Continue reading The orchard guardian: pest vole control by owls

Editor’s Choice 55:6 -Disentangling natural vs anthropogenic influences on predation: reducing impacts on sensitive prey

The Editor’s Choice article for issue 55:6 is Broad‐scale occurrence of a subsidized avian predator: Reducing impacts of ravens on sage‐grouse and other sensitive prey by O’Neil et al. Associate Editor Margaret Stanley explains the importance of this paper and the disentanglement of natural and anthropogenic influences. As a researcher who often fixates on invasive predators, the tricky issues associated with natural predation, from native predators that … Continue reading Editor’s Choice 55:6 -Disentangling natural vs anthropogenic influences on predation: reducing impacts on sensitive prey

Long-term decline in prey increases predator competition

Bringing together data from a 50-year period to better-understand predator-prey interactions. Associate Editor, Matt Hayward discusses the recently published article, Changes in African large carnivore diets over the past half‐century reveal the loss of large prey by Creel et al. Much of our understanding of ecology comes from systems that are assumed to represent the way life has interacted for millennia. Yet this assumption is … Continue reading Long-term decline in prey increases predator competition