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David R. Chalcraft Robin M. Andrews Predation on lizard eggs by ants: species interactions

Summary: David R. Chalcraft á Robin M. Andrews
Predation on lizard eggs by ants: species interactions
in a variable physical environment
Received: 12 October 1998 / Accepted: 31 December 1998
Abstract One explanation for long-term Żuctuations in
population density is that the intensity of interactions
between species is variable. A population can experience
variation in the intensity of a species interaction if (1) the
density of species with which it directly interacts changes
and/or (2) the strength of the interaction (i.e., per capita
eects) changes. At Barro Colorado Island, Panama, the
tropical lizard Anolis limifrons exhibits wide annual
Żuctuations in density. Previous studies have indicated
that (1) the density of A. limifrons is negatively corre-
lated with the amount of wet-season rainfall, (2) Żuc-
tuations in density are related more to variation in egg
mortality than to variation in lizard mortality or to fe-
cundity, and (3) most egg mortality is the result of pre-
dation by Solenopsis ants. We hypothesized that the
amount of wet-season rainfall indirectly alters the den-


Source: Andrews, Robin - Department of Biological Sciences, Virginia Tech


Collections: Environmental Sciences and Ecology