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Foraging ecology of woodpeckers in lowland Malaysian rain forests

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  09 August 2004

Alison R. Styring
Affiliation:
Department of Biological Sciences and Museum of Natural Science, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803, USA
Mohamed Zakaria bin Hussin
Affiliation:
Department of Forest Management, Faculty of Forestry, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Serdang, Selangor, West Malaysia

Abstract

We investigated the foraging ecology of 13 species of woodpecker in logged and unlogged lowland rain forest at two forest reserves in West Malaysia (Pasoh Forest Reserve and Sungai Lalang Forest Reserve). The parameters perch diameter and microhabitat/substrate type explained more variation in the data than other parameters, and effectively divided the guild into two groups: (1) ‘conventional’ – species that excavated frequently, used relatively large perches, and foraged on snags and patches of dead wood, and (2) ‘novel’ – species that used smaller perches and microhabitats that are available in tropical forests on a year-round basis (e.g. external, arboreal ant/termite nests and bamboo). These novel resources may explain, in part, the maintenance of high woodpecker diversity in tropical rain forests.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
2004 Cambridge University Press

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