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Anting behavior by the White-bearded Manakin (Manacus manacus, Pipridae): an example of functional interaction in a frugivorous lekking bird

Comportamento de formicar-se da rendeira (Manacus manacus, Pipridae): um exemplo de interação funcional em um pássaro frugívoro com comportamento de lek

Behavioral studies of birds have reported several functions for active anting. Maintenance of plumage and prevention from ectoparasites are some examples. In this context, anting by males may be of particular importance in a classical lek mating system, where male-male competition is common and individuals with higher fitness may be more successful at attracting of females. In the present note, I describe the anting behavior of White-bearded Manakin (Manacus manacus) and I relate it to lek breeding and feeding (frugivory) habits of the species. Males used up to seven Solenopsis sp. ants. They rubbed each small ant from 4 to 31 times on undertail feathers until the ants were degraded; ants were not eaten. Males then searched for a new ant in the court. Seeds discarded by males on their individual display courts attract herbivorous ants that are used for anting as a way to maintain feathers and fitness. I hypothesize that anting in White-bearded Manakin may increase the probability of males to attract females to their display courts.

ants; lek; male-male competition; maintenance of plumage; restinga forest; seeds


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