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Foraging habits of Crab plovers Dromas ardeola overwintering on the Kenya coast
Fasola, M.; Canova, L.; Biddau, L. (1996). Foraging habits of Crab plovers Dromas ardeola overwintering on the Kenya coast. Colon. Waterbirds 19(2): 207-213.
In: Colonial Waterbirds. Colonial Waterbird Society: De Leon Springs Fla.. ISSN 0738-6028, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Author keywords
    feeding success, prey selection

Authors  Top 
  • Fasola, M.
  • Canova, L.
  • Biddau, L.

    The Crab Plover, a little known endemic species of the north and west coasts of the Indian Ocean and the only member of the family Dromadidae, was studied at Mida Creek, one of its main overwintering areas. Roosting and feeding alternated in relation to the tidal cycle. Feeding occurred both by day and by night, but in different areas. Prey were pursued chiefly by visual detection; tactile probing was also used but with low success. The diet included all prey types present within a 25 cm layer of mud, but prey which often come to the surface (crabs and molluscs) dominated, while worms which remain within the mud were preyed upon less frequently. Juveniles took less than half the weight of food taken per min by the adults, due to a lower capture rate and smaller prey. The juveniles seemed to have Che same rate of prey detection as the adults, but to be less able at prey capture, especially for prey thai, hide in mud and are presumably more difficult to catch. The overall feeding behavior of the Crab Plover is very similar to that of the Charadrius and Pluvialis waders.

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