Related topics: birds · animals · prey · frogs

Fear of predators increases risk of illness in prey species

Predators are not only a deadly threat to many animals, they also affect potential prey negatively simply by being nearby. Researchers at Lund University in Sweden have studied what happens to the prey's immune system when ...

No evidence for increased egg predation in the Arctic

Climate and ecosystems are changing, but predation on shorebird nests has changed little around the globe over the past 60 years, according to a study by an international team of 60 researchers. The study, published in Science ...

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Predation

In ecology, predation describes a biological interaction where a predator (an organism that is hunting) feeds on its prey, (the organism that is attacked). Predators may or may not kill their prey prior to feeding on them, but the act of predation always results in the death of the prey. The other main category of consumption is detritivory, the consumption of dead organic material (detritus). It can at times be difficult to separate the two feeding behaviors, for example where parasitic species prey on a host organism and then lay their eggs on it for their offspring to feed on its decaying corpse. The key characteristic of predation however is the predator's direct impact on the prey population. On the other hand, detritivores simply eat what is available and have no direct impact on the "donor" organism(s).

Selective pressures imposed on one another has led to an evolutionary arms race between prey and predator, resulting in various antipredator adaptations.

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