Foraging consists of both ecological and physiological processes best conceived as a coordinated, whole organism process. When digestive physiology – gut structure and function – is rate-limiting, most animals adjust the gut to increase capacity. Fluctuations in resource abundances, seasonal environmental changes, and aspects of the life cycle, like reproduction and migration, cause changes in diet. Such changes in diet induce adjustment or modulation of gut structure and/or function to permit high efficiency and processing capacity in response to those changes. We can thus view the flexible gut as a vital and integral component of an animal’s foraging strategy.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Title of host publication||Encyclopedia of Animal Behavior|
|Editors||Michael D. Breed, Janice Moore|
|Place of Publication||Oxford|
|State||Published - 2010|