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Behavior of the blue-diademed motmot (Momotus lessonii) when hearing predator and conspecific calls

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Title:
Behavior of the blue-diademed motmot (Momotus lessonii) when hearing predator and conspecific calls
Translated Title:
Comportamiento del bobo (Momotus lessonii) al oír a los depredadores y las llamadas conspecíficos ( )
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Kornbrath, Hannah
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Momotidae   ( lcsh )
Territoriality (Zoology)   ( lcsh )
Predation (Biology)   ( lcsh )
Costa Rica--Puntarenas--Monteverde Zone   ( lcsh )
Costa Rica--Guanacaste--Cañitas   ( lcsh )
Momotidae
Territorialidad (Zoología)
Depredación (Biología)
Costa Rica--Puntarenas--Zona de Monteverde
Costa Rica--Guanacaste--Cañitas
Tropical Ecology Spring 2011
Ecología Tropical Primavera 2011
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Reports   ( lcsh )
Reports

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Abstract:
Interspecific interactions between predators and prey have lead to a number of evolutionary adaptations that benefit predator and prey, such as pursuit-deterrent signals. These non-aggressive signals from prey to predator are advantageous for both: the predator wastes no energy on what would be an unsuccessful attack and the prey conserves energy by avoiding the need to escape. The blue-diademed motmot (Momotus lessonii) is a species that benefits from its pursuit-deterrent tail wag display, which tells predators that it is aware of their presence and is prepared to flee. The behavioral responses of M. lessonii in the Monteverde area to conspecific, predator, and control bird calls were quantified and compared. Subjects exhibited the pursuit-deterrent tail wag display and other predator avoidance behaviors in response to the predatory collared forest-falcon (Micrastur semitorquatus) call. They call continuously and approach more during conspecific calls as a form of territoriality, and may exhibit an extra territorial behavior in full tail wag displays. Finally, the control call of the white-throated robin (Turdus assimilis) had little effect on blue-diademed motmot behavior; they tended to continue typical behavior. These findings can shed light on pursuit-deterrent signaling and conspecific territorial displays, and suggest further research into conspecific calling by paired birds and possible extra territorial behavior.
Abstract:
Las interacciones inter-específicas entre las presas y los depredadores han llevado a un número importante de adaptaciones que benefician tanto al depredador como a la presa, tales como las señales de disuasión. Estas señales no agresivas de la presa al depredador son ventajosas para ambos: el depredador no gasta energía en hacer un ataque inefectivo y la presa conserva la energía al evitar la necesidad de escapar. Momotus lessonii es una especie que se beneficia de su comportamiento de disuasión de menear la cola, el cual le indica al depredador que esta alerta de su presencia y está listo para volar. Las respuestas del comportamiento de M. lessonii en la región de Monteverde a los depredadores conspecíficos y las llamadas de control de las aves fueron cuantificadas y comparadas. Los individuos exhibieron el comportamiento de meneo de la cola y otros comportamientos de evasión en respuesta al llamado del depredador (Micrastur semitorquatus). Ellos cantan continuamente y se acercan durante los llamados de conspecíficos como una forma de territorialidad, y pueden exhibir un comportamiento extra territorial de meneo completo de la cola. Finalmente, el llamado de control de Turdus assimilis tiene poco efecto en el comportamiento del Momoto, ellos tienden a mantener un comportamiento típico. Estos resultados pueden correlacionar señales de disuasión y comportamientos de territorialidad con conspecíficos, y sugiere que se hagan futuros estudios entre los llamados de conspecíficos en parejas de aves y un posible comportamiento extra territorial.
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Behavior of the Blue diademed Motmot ( Momotus lessonii ) when hearing predator and conspecific calls Hannah Kornbrath Department of Biology, University of Puget Sound ABSTRACT Interspecific interactions between predators and prey have lead to a number of evolutionary adaptations that benefit predator and prey, such as pursuit deterrent signals. These non aggressive signals from prey to predator are advantageous for both: the predator wastes no energy on what would be an unsuccessful attack and the prey conserves energy by avoiding the need to escape. The Blue diademed Motmot ( Momotus lessonii ) is a species that benefits from its pursuit deterrent tail wag display, which tells predators that it is aware of their presence and is prepared to flee. The behav ioral responses of M. lessonii in the Monteverde area to conspecific, predator, and control birdcalls were quantified and compared. Subjects exhibited the pursuit deterrent tail wag display and other predator avoidance behaviors in response to the predator y Collared Forest Falcon ( Micrastur semitorquatus ) call. They call continuously and approach more during conspecific calls as a form of territoriality, and may exhibit an extra territorial behavior in full tail wag displays. Finally, the control call of th e White throated Robin ( Turdus assimilis ) had little effect on Blue diademed Motmot behavior ; they tended to continue typical behavior. These findings can shed light on pursuit deterrent signaling and conspecific territorial displays, and suggest further r esearch into conspecific calling by paired birds and possible extra territorial behavior. RESUMEN Las interacciones interespecficas entre presas y depredadores han llevado a un nmero importante de adaptaciones que benefician tanto al depredador como a la presa, como seales de disuasin. Estas seales no agresivas de la presa al depredador son ventajosas para ambos: el depredador no gasta energa en un ataque inefectivo y la presa conserva energa al evitar la necesidad de escapar Momotus lessonii es una especie que se beneficia de su comportamiento de disuasin de menear la cola, el cual le indica al depredador que esta alerta de su presencia y esta listo para volar. La respuesta de M. lessonii en la regin de Monteverde a llamados de conespecficos, depredador y un control se cuantificaron y compararon. Los individuos exhibieron el comportamiento de meneo de la cola y otros comportamientos de evacin en respuesta al llamado del depredador ( Micrastur semitorquatus ). Ellos cantan continuamente y se ac ercan durante los llamados de conespecficos como una forma de territorialidad, y pueden exhibir un comportamiento extra territorial de meneo completo de la cola. Finalmente, el llamado de control de Turdus assimilis tiene poco efecto en el comportamiento del Momoto, ellos tienden a mantener un comportamiento tpico. Estos resultados pueden correlacionar seales de disuacin y comportamientos de territorialidad con conespecficos, y sugiere que futuros estudios entre llamados de conespecficos en parejas de aves y un posible comportamiento extra territorial. INTRODUCTION I NTERACTIONS BETWEEN PREDATORS AND PREY have led to dynamic evolutionary adaptations for both. Adaptations for avoiding predation range from physical appearance th rough crypsis, mimicry, and aposematic coloration, to distasteful

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chemical compounds, and even to behaviors such as freezing, fleeing, or communicative displays (Ives and Dobson 1987). Communicative displays that prey use to avoid predation include signals directed from prey to predator (Caro 1995). An example of an interspecific, anti predator signal is a pursuit deterrence signal. These non aggressive signals are relayed from prey to predator and convey to the predator that the prey is aware of its pres ence and is therefore able to flee from an attack (Woodland et al 1980, Caro 1995). An honest pursuit deterrent signal is beneficial for both the predator and the prey: the predator does not waste energy on what would be an unsurprising and therefore unsu ccessful attack, and the prey conserves energy by avoiding the need to escape (Woodland et al 1980, Caro 1995, Murphy 2006). A pursuit deterrent signal is clear and conspicuous, drawing attention to the signaler and causing the predator to stop its advanc es (Caro 1995, Nishikawa 2010 ). The development of this type of signal would be most useful to an animal that is conspicuous and has a high energy cost when fleeing from predators (Murphy 2006) Many animals have been shown to use pursuit deterrence signal s, such as insects, mammals, reptiles, and birds (Caro 1995). Because they are large and common, as opposed to small insects or rare mammals, birds in general are a good study system. I used the Blue diademed Motmot as a study subject to test pursuit deter rence signaling. All motmots (family Momotidae) repeatedly wag their long tails from side to side like a pendulum (Stiles and Skutch 1989), drawing immediate attention to their tail, in a signal referred to from here on as a tail wag display. The Blue diad emed Motmot ( Momotus lessonii ) has several characteristics that make it susceptible to ambush predators. It is a relatively large and slow flying forest bird, it builds conspicuous nest tunnels in mud banks, and it often forages on the ground, sallying fro m the same predictable perch (Murphy 2006, Stiles and Skutch 1989). These particular behaviors increase the Blue excellent candidate as a pursuit deterrent signaler. Recent studies with the Turquoise browed Motmot ( Eumomota superciliosa ) support the idea that the tail wag display is a pursuit deterrent signal (Murphy 2006). It was shown that E. superciliosa tail wag display in the presence of a predator, independent of whether other indi viduals of E. superciliosa were in the immediate visible area, suggesting that the tail wag display is a signal to predators and not to conspecifics (Murphy 2006). The tail wag display may also be used as a dishonest, preemptive signal before feeding nestl ings (Murphy 2007) and during courtship displays (Hawkins 1955). The Blue diademed Motmot has also displayed territorial behavior before conspecifics by approaching and calling to other motmots and recorded calls, though they do not appear to be aggressive (Orejuela 1977). This study expands on previous research by Nishikawa (2010) where it was found that the tail wag display occurred most often in response to a visual predator, rather than a visual non predator or calls from the predator or non predator. H owever, Nishikawa did not separate the full wag and half wag displays or test conspecific calls and the study may have been improved if the frequency of the different behaviors of the Blue diademed Motmot were recorded during each trial. In this study, I m odified the Nishikawa 2010 study in order to determine how the Blue diademed Motmot behaves in the auditory presence of a predator, a non predator, and a conspecific. If the tail wag display is, in fact, a pursuit deterrence signal, then the predator call should induce the highest frequency of the tail wag display. If the Blue diademed Motmot is, in fact, territorial

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(Orejuela 1977), individuals are predicted to approach and call back to the conspecific call. During the control call, there should be no chan ge in the behavior of Blue diademed Motmot individuals. MATERIALS AND METHODS Study Site This study took place in the area around Monteverde, Costa Rica at forest edges near human altered habitat, such as gardens, pastures, and roadsides. Most data were collected in Cerro Plano, San Luis, and on the Torres land near Caitas. A few trials were also run in Bajo del Tigre, near the lower lab of the Monteverde Biological Station, and on the road near La Escuela Creativa. All data were taken in April and May 2011. Study Organism The Blue diademed Motmot ( Momotus lessonii ) is a medium sized (39 cm), Neotropical, arboreal bird that ranges from southern Mexico to southwestern Panama (Stiles 2009 ). They inhabit secondary forests and edge habitats a nd are adaptable to human disturbances and forage in trees or on the ground, sallying for large arthropods, small reptiles, and fruit (Skutch 1964, Murphy 2006). The sexes are monomorphic in plumage, with green to turquoise upperparts that blend into a bl ue rump and tail, a tawny to yellow green chest, two black dots in the middle of the breast, a black mask bordered by blue, a blue crown, and a long, racquet tipped tail (Skutch 1964) that is made more obvious during the tail wag display (Murphy 2006). Be haviors Recorded The frequency of seven behaviors were recorded: full tail wagging, half tail wagging, calling, stopping a call, approaching the speaker, leaving the area, and foraging. A full tail wag was counted when the subject rocked its tail side to s ide like a pendulum in an arc of about 100 degrees. A half tail wag was counted when the subject cocked its tail to one side before pausing or stopping the display. Calling was repeating a soft, resonant hoop hoop sound every 1 2 seconds. Any pause or cess ation of the call was recorded as stopping the call. Approaching the speaker was any flight that brought the subject closer to the speaker. If the subject flew away from the speaker and out of sight, it was recorded as leaving the area and the trial ended. Foraging behavior was when the subject hopped around nearby tree branches or briefly flew to the ground, in search of insects or fruit, or returned with a food item in its bill. Trials with Calls Once a subject was visually located, three different birdc alls were played for a maximum of five minutes using an iPod and portable speakers. Sometimes the subject left before five minutes, and if it left within thirty seconds of the trial beginning, the trial was dismissed. During some trials, subjects approache d from out of sight. If this occurred with at least a minute left in the trial, a trial on this new subject was conducted. These differences in observation time were accounted for by quantifying the frequency of

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behaviors per minute. The three birdcalls pl ayed were a conspecific ( Momotus lessonni ), a predatory Collared Forest Falcon ( Micrastur semitorquatus ), and a control White throated Robin ( Turdus assimilis ). These particular species were chosen for the predator and control because they occur in the Blu e and Skutch 1989). The calls were obtained from XenoCanto and were all recorded in Costa Rica. For one to two minutes before a trial, the subject was allowed to become Ca lls were usually played in a random order except for the conspecific, which was played last so behavior after the trial would not interfere with subsequent trials. The frequencies of the ten behaviors described above were recorded. If the subject continued a behavior for the full five minutes, frequency was counted every thirty seconds for a total of ten marks for the behavior. RESULTS Tail Wag Display Blue diademed Motmot subjects dis played half tail wagging more during predator calls than conspecific or control calls (Fig. 1 ). Subjects were equally likely to display full tail wagging for conspecific and predator calls, but displayed no full tail wagging during control calls (Fig. 2). FIGURE 1. Frequency of Momotus lessonii half tail wagging in respons e to a conspecific, predator (Collared Forest Falcon), and control (White throated Robin) call. Calls were played for a maximum of five minutes in the presence of M. lessonii in the Monteverde area. Subjects displayed half tail wagging more during predator calls. (One way ANOVA, F 2,total = 3.3076, P = 0.0508) Error bars represent the standard error for each mean. The mean frequency of half tail wagging during the conspecific call was 0.04 0.03 times per minute (n = 11), during the predator call it was 0.23 0.10 times per minute (n = 11), and during the control call it was 0.02 0.02 times per minute (n = 10).

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FIGURE 2. Frequency of Momotus lessonii full tail wagging in response to a conspecific, predator (Collared Forest Falcon), and control (Whit e throated Robin) call. Calls were played for a maximum of five minutes in the presence of M. lessonii in the Monteverde area. Subjects never full tail wagged during the control call (n = 10) and were equally likely to display full tail wagging for conspec ific and predator calls (One way ANOVA, F df,,total = 1.2440, P = 0.3032 ). Error bars represent the standard error for each mean. The mean frequency of full tail wagging during the conspecific call was 0.11 0.06 times per minute (n = 11) and during the predator call it was 0.15 0.09 times per minute (n = 11). Calling and Stopping a Call Blue diademed Motmot subjects called significantly more in response to the conspecific call, and did not call at all in response to the control birdcall (Fig. 3). Sub jects never stopped calling during trials with a conspecific call, but there was a slight trend for subjects to stop calling during trials with the predator call (Fig. 4).

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FIGURE 3. Frequency of Momotus lessonii calling in response to a conspecific, pr edator (Collared Forest Falcon), and control (White throated Robin) call. Calls were played for a maximum of five minutes in the presence of M. lessonii in the Monteverde area. Subjects never called during the control call (n = 10) and called significantly more in response to the conspecific call (One way ANOVA, F df,,total = 6.8175 P = 0.0040). Error bars represent the standard error for each mean. The mean frequency of calling during the conspecific call was 1.27 0.39 times per minute (n = 11) and dur ing the predator call it was 0.27 0.18 times per minute (n = 9).

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FIGURE 4. Frequency of Momotus lessonii stopping calls in response to a conspecific, predator (Collared Forest Falcon), and control (White throated Robin) call. Calls were played for a maximum of five minutes in the presence of M. lessonii in the Monteverde area. Subjects never stopped calling during trials with a conspecific call (n = 11), but there was a slight trend for subjects to stop calling during trials with the predator call ( One way ANOVA, F df,,total = 1.5463, P = 0.2295 ) Error ba rs represent the standard error for each mean. The mean frequency of stopping calls during the predator call it was 0.12 0.07 times per minute (n = 11) and during the control call it was 0.07 0 .05 times per minute (n = 11). Leaving, Approaching, and Foraging Blue diademed Motmot subjects tended to approach the most during the conspecific call and approached the least during the predator call (Fig. 5). The frequency of subjects leaving the area did not differ among the calls, even when a predator call was heard (Fig. 6 ). Subjects tended to forage more during trials with the control call and not at all during trials with the predator call (Fig. 7 ).

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FIGURE 5. Frequency of Momotus lessonii appro aching in response to a conspecific, predator (Collared Forest Falcon), and control (White throated Robin) call. Calls were played for a maximum of five minutes in the presence of M. lessonii in the Monteverde area. Subjects tended to approach the most dur ing the conspecific call and approached the least during the predator call (One way ANOVA, F df,,total = 1.6530, P = 0.2084). Error bars represent the standard error for each mean. The mean frequency of approaching during the conspecific call was 0.32 0 .14 times per minute (n = 11), during the predator call it was 0.08 0.05 times per minute (n = 11), and during the control call it was 0.19 0.08 times per minute (n = 11).

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FIGURE 6. Frequency of Momotus lessonii leaving the area in response to a c onspecific, predator (Collared Forest Falcon), and control (White throated Robin) call. Calls were played for a maximum of five minutes in the presence of M. lessonii in the Monteverde area. The frequency of leaving the area did not differ among the calls (One way ANOVA, F df,,total = 0.3802 P = 0.6870). Error bars represent the standard error for each mean. The mean frequency of leaving the area during the conspecific call was 0.14 0.10 times per minute (n = 11), during the predator call it was 0.21 0.07 times per minute (n = 11), and during the control call it was 0.24 0.09 times per minute (n = 11).

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FIGURE 7. Frequency of Momotus lessonii foraging in response to a conspecific, predator (Collared Forest Falcon), and control (White throated Ro bin) call. Calls were played for a maximum of five minutes in the presence of M. lessonii in the Monteverde area. Subjects tended to forage more during trials with the control call and not at all during trials with the predator call (One way ANOVA, F df,,to tal = 3.1433, P = 0.0576). Error bars represent the standard error for each mean. The mean frequency of foraging during the conspecific call was 0.03 0.03 times per minute (n = 11) and during the control call it was 0.27 0.14 times per minute (n = 10 ). Additional Observations At least four of what appeared to be mated pairs of Blue diademed Motmots were observed during the course of this study. During trials with the conspecific call for these four pairs, only one bird in the pair called continuously while the other did not call at all. Usually, calling subjects would continue calling for about ten minutes after the trial ended. When hearing calling Blue diademed Motmots while searching for unseen subjects, I noticed that usually more than one bird wo uld be calling at a time. During a trial with the control call, I witnessed a foraging subject catch an insect, perch outside its nest tunnel, wag its tail energetically, then disappear into the tunnel, and reappear without the insect. Since this appeared to be a pre feeding wag display (Murphy 2007), this trial was not included in data analysis. DISCUSSION Anti predator behavior for predator calls The predatory Collared F orest Falcon call appeared to elicit the anti predator behavior in Blue diademed Mot mots, including the pursuit deterrent tail wag display. Subjects engaged in a high frequency of half tail wagging and some full tail wagging, supporting evidence for tail wagging as a pursuit deterrent signal (Murphy 2006, Nishikawa 2010).

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This signal is t hought to be beneficial to the Blue diademed Motmot since signals to the predator that the bird sees the predator and is prepared to escape, helping the predator avoid an unsuccessful pursuit and saving the bird energy from the need to fly away ( Woodland e t al 1980, Caro 1995, Murphy 2006). Blue diademed Motmot subjects also exhibited predator avoidance behavior during trials with the predator call. Subjects behaved in ways that would minimize detection by a predator, such as stopping calls, not leaving th e area significantly more perhaps because flying could make the subject more vulnerable to attack, approaching less, and not foraging at all when the predator call was heard. These behaviors all make Blue diademed Motmot individuals less vulnerable to pred ation. Additionally, I observed an occurrence of the pre feeding wag display (Murphy 2007). This is a dishonest tail wagging signal that occurs right before a parent enters the nest tunnel to feed the nestlings, probably in response to the potential presen ce of a predator (Murphy 2007). Since usually tail wagging is an honest signal, it is unlikely that any unseen predator would still attack (Murphy 2007). Therefore, the pre feeding wag display is beneficial to the individual Blue diademed Motmot because it does not get attacked during this particularly vulnerable period (Murphy 2007). Territorial behavior for conspecific calls The conspecific call seemed to cause territorial behavior in Blue diademed Motmot subjects. When the Blue diademed Motmot call was played, subjects often called continuously, never stopped calling during the trial, and sometimes approached. It was also observed that birds would call for about ten minutes after a trial; in fact, when conducting sequential trials, the conspecific call w as played last so the excessive calling after the trial would not interfere with subsequent trials. These territorial behaviors of calling and approaching are consistent with observations in the Yucatan Peninsula (Orejuela 1977). He noticed that nesting pa irs of the Blue crowned Motmot ( Momotus momota ) had little overlap between territories, and both paired birds were quick to approach and call back to a conspecific call (Orejuela 1977). However, in my study, I consistently observed that only one subject in the pair called continuously while the other did not call at all. Since M. momota and M. lessonii have recently been combined into the M. lessonii species (Stiles 2009), perhaps this is due to a difference between the two regions of Costa Rica and the Yuc atan. Both sexes of Blue diademed Motmot in the Yucatan could defend the territory while only one se x of Blue diademed Motmot in Costa Rica could be responsible for territory defense from conspecifics. This should be an area of future study. Interestingly, a possible territorial display of full tail wagging was observed during conspecific calls. Subjects were equally likely to display full wagging behavior during predator and conspecific calls This could be the result of a small sample size or the influenc tail wagging in the Blue diademed Motmot functions as a pursuit deterrent signal and an extra territorial display aimed at conspecifics (Nishikawa 2011). If an invading, calling conspecific is not leav ing the original territory even after repeated approaches and continuously calling, this individual may try to draw more attention to itself to signal possession of the territory (Nishikawa 2011). This is another opportunity for future research.

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Ty pical behavior for control calls The call of the White throated Robin appeared to have little effect on the behavior of Blue diademed Motmot subjects, since they usually went about their typical activities Subjects displayed no full tail wagging, did not call at all, and were most likely to forage as normal in response to the robin control call. This was the expected response to a birdcall with no direct impact on the Blue diademed Motmot. Conclusions As expected, Blue diademed Motmots exhibit the pursuit deterrent tail wag display and other predator avoidance behaviors in response to the predatory Collared Forest Falcon call. They call continuously and approach more during conspecific calls as a form of territoriality, and may exhibit an extra territorial behavior in full tail wag displays. Also, the control call of the White throated Robin had little effect on subject behavior. Blue diademed Motmot behavior in response to these different calls could provide insight into pursuit deterrent signals and consp ecific territoriality displays. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS I would like to thank Anjali Kumar for being my project advisor, answering many questions, and waking up early to show me potential study sites. Thanks to Elise Nishikawa for responding quickly to emails w ith helpful information and extra literature. Thank you to John Hoang from the EAP program for sharing his motmot photos. Many thanks to Elsida and Fermin Torres Leitn for hosting me for the month, giving me pjaro bobo tips, and letting me traipse around their hill and cow pasture. Thank you to Emily Hollenbeck for editing my first draft. I would like to thank Nathan Sellers for helping me search for motmots in San Luis, and his host parents Hugo and Odeilia Picado for feeding me during this time. And fin ally, thank you to all my classmates who told me where and when they sighted motmots over the course of this study. LITERATURE CITED C ARO T. M. 1995. Pursuit deterrence revisited. Tree. 10: 500 503. H AWKINS R. W. 1955. First breeding of the Common Motm ot ( Momotus momota ) in captivity. Avicultural Magazine. 61: 230 233. I VES A. R. AND A. P. D OBSON 1987. Antipredator behavior and the population dynamics of simple predator prey systems. The American Naturalist. 130: 431 447. M URPHY T. G. 2006. Predator elicited visual signal: why the turquoise browed motmot wag displays its racketed tail. Behavioral Ecology. 17: 547 553. M URPHY T. G. 2007. deterrent signal? Why the turquoise browed motmot wags its tail before feeding nestl ings. Animal Behavior. 73: 965 970. N ISHIKAWA E. 2010. The wag display of the Blue crowned Motmot ( Momotus momota ) as a predator deterrent signal. CIEE Tropical Ecology and Conservation: Spring 2010, pp 197 205. N ISHIKAWA E. 2011. Department of Ecology a nd Evolutionary Biology, University of Colorado at Boulder. Personal correspondence on May 9, 2011. O REJUELA J. E. 1977. Comparative biology of Turquoise browed and Blue crowned Motmots in the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico. Living Bird. 16: 193 208. S KUTCH A F. 1964. Life history of the Blue diademed Motmot ( Momotus momota ). Ibis. 106: 321 332. S TILES F. G. 2009. A review of the genus Momotus (Coraciiformes: Momotidae) in northern South America and adjacent areas. Ornitologa Colombiana. 8: 29 75. S TILES F G. AND S KUTCH A. F. 1989. A guide to the birds of Costa Rica. Comstock Publishing Associates. Ithaca, NY. W OODLAND D. J., Z. J AAFAR M. L. K NIGHT 1980. The American Naturalist. 115: 748 753.


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Interspecific interactions between predators and prey have lead to a number of evolutionary adaptations that benefit predator and prey, such as pursuit-deterrent signals. These non-aggressive signals from prey to predator are advantageous for both: the predator wastes no energy on what would be an unsuccessful attack and the prey conserves energy by avoiding the need to escape. The blue-diademed motmot (Momotus lessonii) is a species that benefits from its pursuit-deterrent tail wag display, which tells predators that it is aware of their presence and is prepared to flee. The behavioral responses of M. lessonii in the Monteverde area to conspecific, predator, and control bird calls were quantified and compared. Subjects exhibited the pursuit-deterrent tail wag display and other predator avoidance behaviors in response to the predatory collared forest-falcon (Micrastur semitorquatus) call. They call continuously and approach more during conspecific calls as a form of territoriality, and may exhibit an extra territorial behavior in full tail wag displays. Finally, the control call of the white-throated robin (Turdus assimilis) had little effect on blue-diademed motmot behavior; they tended to continue typical behavior. These findings can shed light on pursuit-deterrent signaling and conspecific territorial displays, and suggest further research into conspecific calling by paired birds and possible extra territorial behavior.
Las interacciones inter-especficas entre las presas y los depredadores han llevado a un nmero importante de adaptaciones que benefician tanto al depredador como a la presa, tales como las seales de disuasin. Estas seales no agresivas de la presa al depredador son ventajosas para ambos: el depredador no gasta energa en hacer un ataque inefectivo y la presa conserva la energa al evitar la necesidad de escapar. Momotus lessonii es una especie que se beneficia de su comportamiento de disuasin de menear la cola, el cual le indica al depredador que esta alerta de su presencia y est listo para volar. Las respuestas del comportamiento de M. lessonii en la regin de Monteverde a los depredadores conspecficos y las llamadas de control de las aves fueron cuantificadas y comparadas. Los individuos exhibieron el comportamiento de meneo de la cola y otros comportamientos de evasin en respuesta al llamado del depredador (Micrastur semitorquatus). Ellos cantan continuamente y se acercan durante los llamados de conspecficos como una forma de territorialidad, y pueden exhibir un comportamiento extra territorial de meneo completo de la cola. Finalmente, el llamado de control de Turdus assimilis tiene poco efecto en el comportamiento del Momoto, ellos tienden a mantener un comportamiento tpico. Estos resultados pueden correlacionar seales de disuasin y comportamientos de territorialidad con conspecficos, y sugiere que se hagan futuros estudios entre los llamados de conspecficos en parejas de aves y un posible comportamiento extra territorial.
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Territoriality (Zoology)
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