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dc.contributor.authorLe Boeuf, Burney J-
dc.contributor.authorAurioles Gamboa, David-
dc.contributor.authorRiofrío-Lazo, Marjorie-
dc.description.abstractStable isotope analysis is useful for examining the feeding strategies of mammals. Isotopes in the annual deposition growth layers of dentine in teeth permit assessment of ontogenetic dietary shifts in individuals, because this metabolically inert tissue is not resorbed after deposition. Profiles of stable isotope ratios of nitrogen (δ15N) and carbon (δ13C) from the teeth of northern elephant seals Mirounga angustirostris, aged between 1 and 11 yr, were described from stranded individuals in San Benito and Magdalena Islands, Mexico, between 2000 and 2009. δ13C and δ15N values differed with age in each sex indicating shifts in feeding habits throughout life, as well as in their physiological condition. Although steady δ13C values within each individual suggest fidelity to feeding grounds, differences in δ13C values between males and females were likely a reflection of sexual segregation on the feeding areas, which begins during the juvenile stage. Mean δ15N values of males (18.3‰) and females (18.2‰) would suggest that both groups feed at a similar trophic level; however a combination of differences in benthic versus pelagic and longitudinal foraging habitats would be masking real sex differences in trophic level, estimated for the species at 4.6. δ15N and δ13C values varied markedly between individuals of the same sex, suggesting the potential existence of diverse feeding strategies leading to a resource partitioning in this species. The alleged fetal growth layer has a δ15N value 1.8‰ higher than the average of the adult female stage, suggesting that the fetal layer is more likely the product of the intensive nursing during the first month of life.es
dc.description.sponsorshipInstituto Politécnico Nacional (IPN). Centro Interdisciplinario de Ciencias Marinases
dc.publisherMarine Ecology Progress Serieses
dc.subjectstable isotopeses
dc.subjectisotope fractionationes
dc.subjectontogenetic dietary shiftses
dc.subjectNorthern elephant seales
dc.subjectfeeding strategieses
dc.subjectgrowth layers of dentinees
dc.titleOntogenetic changes in feeding habits of northern elephant seals revealed by δ15N and δ13C analysis of growth layers in teethes
dc.description.especialidadCiencias marinases
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