PerspectiveEcology

Seabirds—Individuals in Colonies

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Science  05 Jul 2013:
Vol. 341, Issue 6141, pp. 35-36
DOI: 10.1126/science.1240316

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Summary

In a large seabird colony, hundreds of thousands of individual birds rear their young (see the figure). Such colonies require abundant food resources within the foraging range of individuals. But what happens when two or more colonies occur in close vicinity? On page 68 of this issue, Wakefield et al. (1) provide strong evidence that seabirds in neighboring colonies do not directly compete for food but rather segregate to search for food in different areas. They propose modeling hypotheses on how such separation might have evolved over time.