Seed predation and potential dispersal of Ceratocaryum argenteum (Restionaceae) nuts by the striped mouse (Rhabdomys pumilio) / Joseph Douglas Mandla White

 

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dc.contributor.advisor Bronner, Gary N en_ZA
dc.contributor.advisor Midgley Jeremy J en_ZA
dc.contributor.author White, Joseph Douglas Mandla en_ZA
dc.date.accessioned 2015-09-15T10:33:14Z
dc.date.available 2015-09-15T10:33:14Z
dc.date.issued 2013 en_ZA
dc.identifier.citation White, J. 2013. Seed predation and potential dispersal of Ceratocaryum argenteum (Restionaceae) nuts by the striped mouse (Rhabdomys pumilio) / Joseph Douglas Mandla White. University of Cape Town. en_ZA
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/11427/14027
dc.description.abstract This study aimed to better understand the role of rodents as seed predators and dispersers in the fynbos biome at De Hoop Nature Reserve, South Africa in May and June, 2013. Based on previous studies I hypothesised that the large, nut-like seeds of Ceratocaryum argenteum (Restionaceae) are scatter-hoarded by rodents and that rodent seed choices and seed fates are affected by seed size and hull thickness. Field trials using three seed types showed that smaller seeds with a high reward and low processing cost were consumed significantly(p<0.01) more than large, thick hulled seeds. Application of wire tags to facilitate discovery of relocated seeds had no significant influence on seed choice (p>0.05), but further research should be conducted to determine if spooling of C. argenteum seeds influences rodent seed choice. Smaller seeds with a high-reward and low processing cost showed a significantly greater percentage of usage (p<0.01) where seed stations were encountered and exploited. Rhabdomys pumilio was confirmed as being the most common murid at the study site, however, it seems unlikely that it scatter-hoards C. argenteum seeds, as no consumption or burial of seeds was observed. However, R. pumilio did show an interest in C. argenteum seeds and attempted to consume some seeds or carried seeds over distances not significantly different (p>0.05) from the observed distances between nearest neighbour C.argenteum plants before discarding them on the soil. Additionally, the maximum distance R. pumilio moved C. argenteum seeds was commensurate with the maximum distance between nearest neighbour C. argenteum stands, so the end fate of the seeds remains unknown. Further research should account for seasonal variability in scatter-hoarding behaviour. en_ZA
dc.language.iso eng en_ZA
dc.subject.other Seed Predation en_ZA
dc.title Seed predation and potential dispersal of Ceratocaryum argenteum (Restionaceae) nuts by the striped mouse (Rhabdomys pumilio) / Joseph Douglas Mandla White en_ZA
dc.type Thesis / Dissertation en_ZA
uct.type.publication Research en_ZA
uct.type.resource Thesis en_ZA
dc.publisher.institution University of Cape Town
dc.publisher.faculty Faculty of Science en_ZA
dc.publisher.department Department of Biological Sciences en_ZA
dc.type.qualificationlevel Honours en_ZA
dc.type.qualificationname BSc (Hons) en_ZA
uct.type.filetype Text
uct.type.filetype Image


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