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Title: Basking and diurnal foraging in the dasyurid marsupial 'Pseudantechinus macdonnellensis'
Contributor(s): Pavey, Christoph Robert (author); Geiser, Fritz (author)orcid 
Publication Date: 2008
DOI: 10.1071/ZO08032
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Abstract: Several mammal species bask to passively rewarm during arousal from torpor, a strategy that can decrease energetic costs. Nothing is known about basking behaviour in these species or the trade-offs between energetic benefits of basking and potential costs associated with changes in activity patterns and increased predation risk. We assessed basking during winter in 'Pseudantechinus macdonnellensis', an Australian arid-zone marsupial that belongs to a family (Dasyuridae) that is typically nocturnal. Animals were implanted with temperature-sensitive transmitters to assess body temperatures and to assist in visually locating animals active during the day. Tagged animals regularly exhibited diurnal foraging. Foraging bouts occurred throughout the day; however, most bouts were observed within 3 h of sunset. By comparison, basking occurred much more frequently in the morning. Basking and a shift towards diurnal foraging in winter is associated with a decrease in richness and abundance of predators. 'P. macdonnellensis' appears to compensate for the occurrence of torpor during the active phase (i.e. night) in winter by changing activity patterns such that foraging commences during what is usually the rest phase. These activity patterns are not expected to occur during the remainder of the year.
Publication Type: Journal Article
Source of Publication: Australian Journal of Zoology, 56(2), p. 129-135
Publisher: CSIRO Publishing
Place of Publication: Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
ISSN: 0004-959X
Field of Research (FOR): 060801 Animal Behaviour
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: C1 Refereed Article in a Scholarly Journal
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