Access

You are not currently logged in.

Access JSTOR through your library or other institution:

login

Log in through your institution.

If You Use a Screen Reader

This content is available through Read Online (Free) program, which relies on page scans. 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.
Journal Article

Competition Refuges and Coexistence: An Example from Serengeti Carnivores

Sarah M. Durant
Journal of Animal Ecology
Vol. 67, No. 3 (May, 1998), pp. 370-386
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2647378
Page Count: 17
Were these topics helpful?
See something inaccurate? Let us know!

Select the topics that are inaccurate.

Cancel
  • Read Online (Free)
  • Download ($18.00)
  • Subscribe ($19.50)
  • Add to My Lists
  • Cite this Item
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.
Competition Refuges and Coexistence: An Example from Serengeti Carnivores
Preview not available

Abstract

1. In the last two decades predator - prey models have shown that `refuges', in which prey can seek respite from predation, are crucial for the persistence of prey and predator. This concept is equally applicable to interspecific competition and, in a heterogeneous environment, species with low competitive ability should seek out `competition refuges' where competition is reduced. 2. Cheetahs have low competitive ability compared with their principal competitors, hyenas and lions, which are directly responsible for their low density. This study uses distribution data collected in the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania over a 4-year period to show that cheetahs are more strongly associated with each other than with their competitors and utilize areas with low-density prey. 3. Cheetahs exhibit local avoidance behaviour in both space and time with respect to lions and hyenas. This behaviour is facultative and is strongest when cheetahs are engaged in activities that might expose them to food loss or increase the risk of close interactions, such as when they are hunting or eating. 4. Lactating cheetahs, whose range is restricted, are more likely to have difficulties finding prey and come into more frequent contact with lions than free-ranging animals. 5. It is argued that although cheetahs always lose in direct competition, they persist in the ecosystem by seeking out `competition refuges' with low densities of lions and hyenas and that their mobility is the key to their continued coexistence with these predators. This pattern of distribution may be generally applicable to other species which, although widely distributed, always occur at low densities.

Page Thumbnails

  • Thumbnail: Page 
370
    370
  • Thumbnail: Page 
371
    371
  • Thumbnail: Page 
372
    372
  • Thumbnail: Page 
373
    373
  • Thumbnail: Page 
374
    374
  • Thumbnail: Page 
375
    375
  • Thumbnail: Page 
376
    376
  • Thumbnail: Page 
377
    377
  • Thumbnail: Page 
378
    378
  • Thumbnail: Page 
379
    379
  • Thumbnail: Page 
380
    380
  • Thumbnail: Page 
381
    381
  • Thumbnail: Page 
382
    382
  • Thumbnail: Page 
383
    383
  • Thumbnail: Page 
384
    384
  • Thumbnail: Page 
385
    385
  • Thumbnail: Page 
386
    386
Part of Sustainability