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Predicting post-natal energy intake of lesser black-backed gull chicks by Dynamic Energy Budget modeling
van der Meer, J.; van Donk, S.; Sotillo, A.; Lens, L. (2020). Predicting post-natal energy intake of lesser black-backed gull chicks by Dynamic Energy Budget modeling. Ecol. Model. 423: 109005. https://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ecolmodel.2020.109005
In: Ecological Modelling. Elsevier: Amsterdam; Lausanne; New York; Oxford; Shannon; Tokyo. ISSN 0304-3800; e-ISSN 1872-7026, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Author keywords
    Dynamic Energy Budget (DEB) theory; Fledgling; Food demands; Nutritional stress; Larus fuscus

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Abstract
    The standard Dynamic Energy Budget (DEB) model is widely used to describe the physiology of individual animals. Here we parametrized the DEB model for the lesser black-backed gull Larus fuscus mainly on the basis of literature data. Next we performed an inverse modeling approach to predict the food intake rate of gull chicks (model input) on the basis of their growth trajectory from hatching to fledging (model output). Food intake rate and growth were also measured for this period in an aviary experiment, where three different diet treatments resulted in a large range in overall intake rate. These measured food intake rate data were not used in the parameter estimation procedure, but rather to validate model results. Model predictions of food intake rate were systematically only about 10% below the observations, but predictions and observations correlated strongly. The DEB model might be used to predict food provisioning rates in the field, which are difficult to obtain, on the basis of growth data, which are much easier to get.

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