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Search tactics of insectivorous birds foraging in an Australian eucalypt forest

Holmes, R.T. and Recher, H.F. (1986) Search tactics of insectivorous birds foraging in an Australian eucalypt forest. Auk, 103 (3). pp. 515-530.

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Five major searching modes were identified among 23 common, mostly insectivorous bird species, distinguished largely by rates, distances and angles moved by birds while foraging and by their prey-capture behaviour. Some bird species typically moved slowly, visually examining substrates at relatively long distances, and then took flight to capture prey (eg whistlers, flycatchers, muscicapid robins, cuckoos). Others moved at more rapid rates and either gleaned small prey from nearby substrates (eg thornbills, treecreepers) or flushed insects that were then pursued (eg fantails). Eastern shrike-tit Falcunculus frontatus and white-eared honeyeater Meliphaga leucotis were specialized substrate-restricted searchers, seeking invertebrate and carbohydrate foods among the exfoliating bark of Eucalpytus.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publisher: Ornithological Societies of North America
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