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Food resource allocation in larval newt guilds (genus Triturus)

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Changes in the natural diet by different developmental stages of larval Triturus vulgaris, T. vittatus, T montandoni, T. alpestris, T. cristatus and T. karelini and the dynamics of resource allocation in their guilds are discussed. Larval feeding is subdivided into three periods: endogenous, mixed and exogenous. The main trends in age-specific changes of food composition and electivity are similar in the different species. Against a background of general dietary similarity, however, there are interspecific differences in the mode of resource utilization. These are not related to competition for food but correlate with stable interspecific differences in morphology, behaviour and spatial distribution of larvae. The ontogenetic dynamics of food resource allocation are similar in guilds of similar ecological and morphological structure.

Affiliations: 1: Institue of Evolutionary Morphology and Ecology of Animals, USSR Academy of Science, Leninsky Prospekt 33, Moscow, 117071 USSR


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