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Ecología en Bolivia

On-line version ISSN 2075-5023

Abstract

ALIAGA ROSSEL, Enzo  and  TARIFA, Teresa. Cavia sp. as major prey for the barn owl (Tyto alba) at the end of dry season in an altered area in northern La Paz Department, Bolivia. Ecología en Bolivia [online]. 2005, vol.40, n.1, pp. 35-42. ISSN 2075-5023.

Few studies have explored the diet or ecology of the common barn owl (Tyto alba) in Bolivia. In this study, we collected 35 pellets of T. alba in an altered area in deciduous forest in northern La Paz Department at the end of the dry season, and we identified 69 prey items. Mammals (76.9%) were the main prey of barn owls; rodents (72.5%) were especially important. Among the rodents, Cavia sp. was the most important prey, constituting 56.5% of the items eaten, and 96.1% of the total biomass consumed by the owl. The mean mass of small mammal prey in T. alba’s diet (340 g) was greater than those previously reported from other habitats in Bolivia and South America. The presence of Scarabaeidae also stood out with 10.1% of the items consumed, although their contribution in terms of biomass was only 0.2% of the total.

Keywords : Tyto alba; regurgitated pellets; Cavia sp.; Madidi; Bolivia.

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