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Antipredatory behaviour of bank voles and prey choice of weasels — enclosure experiments

Bogumiła Jędrzejewska and Włodzimierz Jędrzejewski
Annales Zoologici Fennici
Vol. 27, No. 4 (1990), pp. 321-328
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/23734571
Page Count: 8
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Antipredatory behaviour of bank voles and prey choice of weasels — enclosure experiments
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Abstract

The antipredatory behaviour of bank voles Clethrionomys glareolus and prey choice of weasels Mustela nivalis were investigated in a seminatural enclosure. Bank voles were observed for three consecutive days. During the second day a weasel was present in the enclosure. The daily activity rhythm of voles without predation risk was characterized by inactivity at nights with pronounced peaks at dawn. When the weasel was present in the pen, vole activity occurred throughout the day. When endangered by a predator, bank voles dramatically increased their above-ground mobility. At the same time, intraspecific aggressiveness decreased. Adult voles were less vulnerable than young ones to weasel predation. In three hunting sessions with different enclosed populations of bank voles, weasels primarily killed young voles.

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