Impact of tent caterpillar defoliation on the reproductive success of black-capped chickadees
Outbreaks of folivorous Lepidoptera caterpillars are common in temperate forests (Ives and Wong 1988, Butterworth 1990). The high fat content, low chitin content, and large size of these larvae make them an important component of the diet of many temperate birds(Betts1955,RobinsonandHolmes 1982,Holmes and Schultz 1988, Sample et. al. 1993). Outbreaksof most speciesshouldincreaseavailable food for breed- ing birds, improving their reproductive successS. ome caterpillars,however, have morphologicalor chemical defensesthat make them unpalatableto avian preda- tors (Heinrich and Collins 1983). During outbreaks, these specieshave the potential to reduce the abun- danceof palatablecaterpillarsthroughseveredefoli- ation. Previousstudieshave not consideredthe effects of outbreaksof unpalatableLepidopteraspecieson the breedingbiology of birds.
Pelech, Shawna and Hannon, Susan J., "Impact of tent caterpillar defoliation on the reproductive success of black-capped chickadees" (1995). Aspen Bibliography. Paper 1880.