Meeting Abstract

119.5  Monday, Jan. 7  Extending thermal games of predator-prey interactions in a spatially-explicit context RIDDELL, EA*; SEARS, MW; Clemson University; Clemson University

For many organisms, biotic interactions are mediated by abiotic features of the environment. Interactions amongst predators and their prey are no exception. For prey, behaviors are the result of balancing trade-offs between the risks of mortality associated with detection by predators and the energetic costs associated with movement while foraging and thermoregulating. In response, predators must adapt to changes in the behavior of prey while also balancing energetic requirements. To date, models of thermally-mediated predator-prey interactions have predicted the extent to which prey specialize on thermal resources in response to predator lethality. However, these predictions have not considered costs associated with movement amongst thermal patches, nor have they considered constraints on movement amongst patches imposed by thermal conditions. Here, we extend these models to include spatially explicit constraints on movement as mediated by thermal features of the environment. The results of these models suggest that the configuration of patches in the environment drives the behavioral decisions in predator-prey interactions. Configurations of habitat that concentrate prey detection tend to favor generalization of the thermal preferences of prey; whereas configurations that reduce prey detection tend to favor specialization.