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Observations on the diets of the long-tailed mouse, Pseudomys higginsi, and the velvet-furred rat, Rattus lutreolus velutinus, in southern Tasmania

Citation

Driessen, MM, Observations on the diets of the long-tailed mouse, Pseudomys higginsi, and the velvet-furred rat, Rattus lutreolus velutinus, in southern Tasmania, Australian Mammalogy, 21, (2) pp. 121-130. ISSN 0310-0049 (1998) [Refereed Article]

Abstract

Diets of two sympatric murids, Pseudomys higginsi and Rattus lutreolus, were studied by faecal analysis during spring and summer in wet sclerophyll forest and sub-alpine woodland on Mount Wellington, Tasmania. Both species were omnivorous but their overall diet differed with Pseudomys higginsi consuming a broader range of food items than Rattus lutreolus. P. higginsi diet tended to reflect the difference in food availability between locations and between seasons. Main items in the diet of P. higginsi at both locations were fruits, monocotyledons (mostly grasses), mosses, fungi and invertebrates. Proportions of fruits and mosses in the diet differed between locations. Mosses and ferns were most common in the diet during spring whereas monocotyledons and some dicotyledons were more common during summer. R. lutreolus diet showed little variation between locations and seasons. Main items in the diet of R. lutreolus were monocotyledons (sedges and grasses), fungi and invertebrates. The importance of mosses and fungi as dietary items are discussed. The results of this study support a developing view of resource partitioning between sympatric Rattus and Pseudomys populations in Tasmania and New South Wales.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Muridae, Pseudomys higginsi, Rattus lutreolus, rodent, diet
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Zoology
Research Field:Vertebrate biology
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Terrestrial systems and management
Objective Field:Terrestrial biodiversity
UTAS Author:Driessen, MM (Mr Michael Driessen)
ID Code:139326
Year Published:1998
Deposited By:Geography and Spatial Science
Deposited On:2020-06-09
Last Modified:2020-06-10
Downloads:0

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