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鳄鱼可能也需要吃点水果,每天五份哦

已有 4498 次阅读 2013-7-31 19:46 |个人分类:小楼一夜听春雨——翻译|系统分类:海外观察| 吃素, 水果, 鳄鱼, 肉食


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九点55 科林·巴拉斯 2013730

看起来,即便鳄鱼也需要他们的“每天五份水果”。至少有一半种类的短吻鳄和其它鳄鱼都会用新鲜水果补充他们的肉食菜谱。

数十年前就有报道称,鳄鱼爱吃水果,南卡罗来纳州查尔斯顿美国鱼类和野生动物服务中心的托马斯Thomas Rainwater如是说。但是,因为这些动物长期以来被认为是食肉动物,所以没有人重视这件事。

最近,研究人员对生活在美国佛罗里达州大沼泽地国家公园的美国短吻鳄(短吻鳄或者密西西比鳄)进行了一次常规检查。托马斯和他的同事发现包括牛心果在内的很多水果都能在鳄鱼的胃里发现。然后,他们报告说,至少有1323种还未灭绝的鳄鱼会吃水果。

无论鳄鱼是不是主动吃水果(这件事值得商榷)——作为一种食肉动物却偷偷摸摸吃水果,而且往往大部分是在夜间觅食,这件事就很奇怪了。当然,也有可能只不过是鳄鱼在吃肉食的时候不小心带进去了一点水果。

西瓜爱好者

但有一些证据表明,水果是被主动吃掉的。去年在东南亚工作的研究员报告说,他看到野生暹罗鳄每天进食一个西瓜。也许,就像鸟肚子里的磨石一样,重一些的水果种子有可能可以帮助动物消化更难以消化的食物。

每天,鳄鱼都在很大的面积里闲逛游泳,所以他们可能是很重要的种子传播者?到目前为止我们可以告诉大家,我们还没发现有植物仅仅依靠鳄鱼作为种子传播者,托马斯说。事实上,saurochory-爬行动物传播植物种子的行为 - 已经在很大程度上被研究人员所忽略,他说。但是,鉴于我们已经在某些动物的胃里发现了惊人数量的植物种子,所以,我们怀疑它们可能是某些湿地植物重要的种子传播者

西班牙塞维利亚多纳纳生物研究站的卡洛斯Carlos Herrera专门研究食肉哺乳动物吃水果的行为,他说,这个研究结果很有意义。只要给予足够的重视,就可以发现几乎所有的脊椎动物不一定什么时候就都会吃下点肉质果植物的种子,无论是有意的或偶然的,他说。

期刊参考:Journal reference: Journal of Zoology, doi.org/m9x

 

Crocodilesmay need their fruity five-a-day

·                           09:55 30 July 2013 by Colin Barras

Even crocodiles need their five a day, it seems. At least halfof all species of alligator and crocodile supplement their meaty diet with theflesh of fruit.

Reports that crocodiles have a taste for fruit go back decades, saysThomas Rainwater at the US Fish and Wildlife Service inCharleston, South Carolina. "But since these animals were long consideredcarnivores, no one paid much attention."

In a routine analysis of American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis)living in the Everglades National Park in Florida, Rainwater and his colleagues foundfruit including pond apples in the alligators' stomachs. They then turned upreports that at least 13 of the 23 living crocodilian species are fruit eaters.

Whether or not crocodilians actively go after fruit is debatable –especially as the predators are secretive and tend to do most of their foragingat night. A crocodile might simply eat an animal that has itself recently dinedon fruit, for example.

Watermelonlover

But there is some evidence that fruit is consumed deliberately, too. Lastyear a researcher working in south-east Asiareported seeing a wild Siamese crocodile tucking into a watermelon. Perhaps, likegrinding stones in a bird's crop, the heavy seeds of some fruits may help theanimals digest their meatier meals.

Crocodilians roam and swim over large areas, so could they be importantseed dispersal agents? "As far as we can tell, there are no plants thatrely exclusively on crocodilians as dispersal agents," says Rainwater.Indeed, saurochory – the act of seed dispersal by reptiles – has largely beenignored by researchers, he says. "But given the number of seeds we havefound in some stomachs, we suspect they may be important for some wetlandspecies."

Carlos Herrera at the Do愀渀愀 Biological Station in Seville, Spain, who hasstudied fruit-eating incarnivorous mammals, says the results makesense. "Whenever sufficient attention is paid, nearly all vertebrates arefound to ingest seeds of fleshy-fruited plants at one time or another, eitherdeliberately or accidentally," he says.

 

http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn23958#.UfjXgDvigrd

 




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