The challenge of supplementary feeding: can geometric analysis help save the kakapo?
|Title||The challenge of supplementary feeding: can geometric analysis help save the kakapo?|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2006|
|Authors||Raubenheimer, D, Simpson, SJ|
|Type of Article||paper|
|Keywords||Geometric models, Kakapo, nutrient balance, regulatory interactions, Strigops habroptilus|
Foraging deficiencies and supplementary feeding play critical roles in kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) breeding biology and conservation. We present a framework for the analysis of complex nutritional data (called the geometric framework – GF) which may contribute further understanding of the relationships between natural foods, supplementary feeding and kakapo reproduction. We outline the basic concepts of the approach, and illustrate its application using data for the protein, lipid and calcium content of a natural food (green fruits of rimu Dacrydium cupressinum) and a supplementary feed (“muesli”). We provide some pointers for the broader application of GF to the problem of kakapo supplementary feeding, and close with a brief review of a literature which suggests that calcium might be a key limiting factor in kakapo reproduction. We hypothesise that supplementary foods with low macronutrient:calcium ratios are likely to be most effective in supporting increased reproduction.