Aziz Subach

Aziz Subach
Tel Aviv University | TAU · Department of Zoology

Aziz Subach
שותה קפה עם נובלס, רץ בחולות

About

58
Publications
7,191
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1,497
Citations
Introduction
כל מה שאני עושה מופיע במאמרים אז פשוט תקראו
Additional affiliations
April 2013 - present
Tel Aviv University
Position
  • A
Description
  • AA

Publications

Publications (58)
Data
מדריך עקבות בעלי חיים בחולות צפון מערב הנגב
Book
מדריך עקבות בעלי חיים בחולות צפון מערב הנגב נכתב בשפה העברית בעברית מופיע תחת השם: "עקבות בחול"
Article
Foragers use several senses to locate food and many animals rely on vision and smell. It is beneficial not to rely on a single sense, which might fail under certain conditions. We examined the contribution of vision and smell to foraging and maze exploration under laboratory conditions using Cataglyphis desert ants as a model. Foraging intensity, m...
Article
Full-text available
The desert horned viper occurs in the dunes of the northwestern Negev desert, Israel. We report on a 2 year study on the viper's behaviour and ecology in its natural habitat. We examined whether the vipers moved faster in a vegetation-dense microhabitat versus an open dune area and detected much slower movement in the former. We nevertheless detect...
Article
Full-text available
Central-place foragers, such as social insects or nesting birds, repeatedly use the same routes from and to their nests when foraging for food. Such species forage more efficiently after accumulating experience. We examined, here, a relatively neglected aspect of such an improvement with experience—the avoidance of pitfall traps. Similar pits are b...
Article
Animals often search for food more efficiently with experience. However, the contribution of experience to foraging success under direct competition has rarely been examined. Here we used colonies of an individually foraging desert ant to investigate the value of spatial experience. First, we trained worker groups of equal numbers to solve either a...
Article
Theories of forgetting highlight two active mechanisms through which animals forget prior knowledge by reciprocal disruption of memories. According to “proactive interference”, information learned previously interferes with the acquisition of new information, whereas “retroactive interference” suggests that newly gathered information interferes wit...
Article
Full-text available
Whereas most animals find urban habitats to be inferior to natural habitats, some “urban specialist” species thrive there. Wormlions present such an example. Common in Mediterranean cities, they cluster in thin layers of loose soil below man-made shelters. Wormlions are fly larvae that dig pit-traps in loose soil and hunt small arthropods. Our firs...
Article
Full-text available
Injury is common in nature resulting, for example, from fighting, partial predation, or the wear of body parts. Injury is costly, expressed in impaired performance, failure in competition, and a shorter lifespan. A survey of the literature revealed the frequent occurrence of injury in ants and its various causes. We examined whether leg- or antenna...
Research
Full-text available
Suggested observations and experiments to examine the microhabitat preference, foraging mode, movement distances, and population size of the Saharan horned viper (Cerastes cerastes) in desert dunes in Israel
Presentation
Full-text available
The recent discovery of Cataglyphis niger’s population structure in Israel, is an intriguing opportunity to investigate a supercolony structure in a non-invasive species. In 2.5 years, extensive collection of colonies in the wild, and 4 maze-solving experiments in the laboratory, enabled to obtain demography of colonies all year-round, no. of queen...
Article
Full-text available
Ambush site selection by sit-and-wait predators is a complex process, involving biotic and abiotic considerations, which greatly affect hunting success and costs. Wormlions are fly larvae that dig pit-traps in loose soil and hunt the arthropod prey falling into their pits. They are abundant in urban environments, found below buildings that provide...
Article
Full-text available
We studied how food type and available landmarks affect spatial learning in the ant Cataglyphis niger while searching for food in a maze. We expected the ants to solve the maze faster with consecutive runs, when the preferred food type is offered, and in the presence of landmarks. Ants should also solve the maze more slowly following a mirror-route...
Article
Full-text available
Experience can lead to faster exploitation of food patches through spatial learning or other parallel processes. Past studies have indicated that hungry animals either search more intensively for food or learn better how to detect it. However, fewer studies have examined the contribution of non-spatial information on the presence of food nearby to...
Article
The sand viper Cerastes vipera can employ one of two distinct foraging modes, the widely foraging or sit-and-wait mode, depending on the interplay between external and internal factors. Here, I illustrate how tracking methods can be used to evaluate the relative usage of each of the two foraging modes by the sand viper. Foraging theory models gener...
Article
Full-text available
One neglected aspect of research on foraging behavior is that of the effect of obstacles that increase habitat complexity on foraging efficiency. Here, we explored how long it takes individually foraging desert ant workers (Cataglyphis niger) to reach a food reward in a maze, and examined whether maze complexity affects maze-solving time (the time...
Article
Full-text available
Wormlions are small fly larvae that dig pits in loose soil to trap their prey. Similar to other trap-building predators, like spiders and antlions, they depend on the habitat structure for successful trap construction and prey catch. We examined whether sites at which wormlions are present differ in sand depth and particle size from nearby sites, a...
Article
Trap-building predators are sit-and-wait predators that construct a trap and wait for other arthropods to be captured in their trap. The abiotic features of their microhabitat play a significant role in their foraging success, and trap relocation can be costly and risky. Wormlions are fly larvae that construct pits in loose soil to catch prey that...
Article
Wormlions are fly larvae that construct pit-traps in loose soil and ambush prey that fall into their pits. They occur in high numbers in cities, below any man-made shelter providing protection from direct sunlight, such as a concrete roof with a thin layer of sand at the ground. Their natural habitat is either caves or any natural structure that pr...
Article
Stress in general and starvation in particular have various and often contrasting effects on different traits. Previous starvation studies have usually focused on one or two response variables and comprised one starvation treatment versus a control. Here, we used the red flour beetle to study the effects of (1) a starvation gradient of 0-4 days, an...
Article
Full-text available
The co-occurrence of two similar species depends on their ability to occupy different ecological niches. Here we compared the consistency of different aspects of foraging behavior in two co-occurring harvester ant species (Messor ebeninus and Messor arenarius), under field conditions. The two species are active concomitantly and display a similar d...
Article
Full-text available
Central-place foragers need to explore their immediate habitat in order to reach food. We let colonies of the individually foraging desert ant Cataglyphis niger search for a food reward in a maze. We did so for three tests per day over two successive days and an additional test after a time interval of 4–20 days (seven tests in total). We examined...
Data
Data are avaiable as an excell file. (XLSX)
Data
A simple mathematical description of the maze used in the experiment. (DOCX)
Data
The effect of colony size and maze complexity on the slope of the three foraging response variables on day 1. (DOCX)
Poster
Full-text available
We let colonies of the individually foraging desert ant Cataglyphis niger forage and search for a food reward in a maze. We examined whether the colonies improved their performance following successive tests between days. Colonies improved in maze-solving and food-discovery time within and between days, indicating that colonies learnt and became mo...
Article
Animals are exposed in nature to a variety of stressors. While stress is generally harmful, mild stress can also be beneficial and contribute to reproduction and survival. We studied the effect of five cold shock events vs. a single cold shock and a control group, representing three levels of stress (harsh, mild, and no stress), on behavioral, phys...
Article
Mating in arthropods is costly and has negative effects on survival. Such effects are often more strongly expressed when individuals are simultaneously exposed to other stress sources. Consequently, the behaviour of virgin and mated individuals often differs. Mated females, for example, search for suitable oviposition sites, whereas virgin females...
Article
Animal personality is defined as the repeatable between-individual differences in behaviour over time and contexts. Some personality traits, such as activity or aggression, have received much attention while other behaviours, such as habitat preference or learning, have been neglected. 2. Wormlion larvae are sit-and-wait dipteran predators that inh...
Article
Predators affect prey directly by predation and indirectly by triggering behavioral responses that aim at reducing predation risk. In this paper, I present a method for training an avian predator which can allow separating between its direct and indirect effects on prey in various experimental setups. Barn owls are found to be a valuable tool for e...
Poster
Full-text available
We compared the consistency of different aspects of foraging behavior in two co-occurring harvester ant species (Messor ebeninus and Messor arenarius), under field conditions. We tested the food preference of colonies by presenting three non-native seed types. M. arenarius was more selective in its food choice. Colonies were then offered one type o...
Article
Full-text available
Behavioral repeatability is an important trait relevant to personality research and to behavioral ecology in general. We examined here the behavioral repeatability of two activity-related traits: movement and edge preference (proportion of time spent next to the test arena edge). We used the red flour beetle as our test species in order to determin...
Article
Full-text available
The effects of different temperatures and diets experienced during distinct life stages are not necessarily similar. The silver-spoon hypothesis predicts that developing under favorable conditions will always lead to better performing adults under all adult conditions. The environment-matching hypothesis suggests that a match between developmental...
Article
Competition in trap-building predators such as antlion larvae is a complex biotic interaction, potentially involving exploitation competition, sand throwing (i.e., interference competition), cannibalism and intra-guild predation. We investigated the short-term behavioral and developmental responses of the strict sit-and-wait antlion predator Myrmel...
Article
Although most antlion species do not construct pits, the vast majority of studies on antlions focused on pit-building species. We report here on a transplant experiment aiming to test for morphological and life history differences between two desert populations of a sit-and-pursue antlion species, Lopezus fedtschenkoi (Neuroptera: Myrmeleontidae),...
Article
Full-text available
Activity levels and foraging success of ectotherms are dependent both on extrinsic factors (e.g., ambient temperature) and intrinsic factors (e.g., hunger level). We focus here on activity and foraging of sand vipers (Cerastes vipera (L., 1758)) (Squamata: Viperidae) in the northwestern Negev desert of Israel. Viper activity is bounded by a specifi...
Article
Pit-building antlion larvae are small sit-and-wait arthropod predators that dig conical pits in sandy soils. We investigated the effect of exposure to constant light versus constant dark conditions on antlion behaviour. Antlions tended to relocate less often, construct pits more frequently and construct larger pits in constant light. We interpret t...
Article
Abstract 1. In two sets of enclosure experiments, we studied the spatial pattern, relocation rates, pit construction rates, and microhabitat preference of Myrmeleon hyalinus larvae. 2. We showed that M. hyalinus larvae actively prefer shady sites and often relocate to shady areas when exposed to the sun. This behaviour may constitute a life-saving...
Article
Full-text available
Antlion larvae are sand-dwelling insect predators, which ambush small arthropod prey while buried in the sand. In some species, the larvae construct conical pits and are considered as sit-and-wait predators which seldom relocate while in other species, they ambush prey without a pit but change their ambush site much more frequently (i.e., sit-and-p...
Article
We performed a transplant experiment to compare the life histories and morphologies of five geographically representative antlion Myrmeleon hyalinus populations along a sharp climatic gradient, from a Mediterranean climate in Israel's north to a desert climate in the south. Larvae were raised in two environmental chambers simulating Mediterranean a...
Article
Full-text available
We used a behavioral bioassay to estimate the advantages that two species of gerbils (Gerbillus allenbyi and G. pyramidum) experienced by preferring a semistabilized dune habitat over a stabilized sand habitat. We used the magnitude of foraging effort by the gerbils to signal the difference between the two habitats. When they were foraging as much...
Article
Full-text available
We used a behavioral bioassay, in the form of foraging behavior of Gerbillus altenbyi, and the ideal free distribution to estimate the costs associated with risk of predation. Experiments were conducted in two pairs of 2-ha field enclosures. Risk of predation was introduced to one 1-ha subplot of each pair of enclosures either by simulating the lig...
Article
Full-text available
Summary1.It has been shown that the two common granivorous gerbil species Gerbillus allenbyi and G. pyramidum that coexist in the sand dunes of the Israeli Negev show temporal partitioning in their time of activity. The bigger species, G. pyramidum, aggressively displaces the smaller species from early night-time. We examined the change in the acti...
Article
Using behavioural bioassays, we measure the cost of both inter- and intraspecific competition to a foraging gerbil, Gerbillus allenbyi. The bioassay is the amount of foraging activity in field enclosures of 2 ha, and the difference between foraging activity in an experimentally manipulated 1-ha subplot compared to the matched, unmanipulated twin he...
Article
We used trained barn owls to introduce a controlled predation threat to two species of gerbil, Gerbillus allenbyi and G. pyramidum in a system of 2-ha, sandy-substrate field enclosures in the Negev Desert, Israel. Using the principles of optimal density-dependent habitat selection, we estimated several coefficients of population interaction focusin...
Article
Full-text available
Since 1963, nonlinear predation theory has predicted that, at low population densities, victim species may well be mutualistic rather than competitive. Theory identifies this mutualism as a principal source of dynamic instability in the interaction. Using gerbils and trained barn owls, we conducted the first (to our knowledge) field tests of the th...
Article
We trained barn owls to fly over 2-ha field enclosures containing populations of Gerbillus allenbyi. Each 2-ha plot was divided into two equal parts by a fence with gates allowing easy passage of the gerbils. We varied the number of gerbils in the enclosure and the number of owl flights on each side of the dividing fence. Gerbil foraging activity r...
Article
Full-text available
Predation plays an important role in ecological communities by affecting prey behavior such as foraging and by physical removal of individual prey. In regard to foraging, animals such as desert rodents often balance conflicting demands for food and safety. This has been studied in the field by indirectly manipulating predatory risk through the alte...
Article
The foraging decisions of animals are often influenced by risk of predation and by the renewal of resources. For example, seed-eating gerbils on sand dunes in the Negev Desert of Israel prefer to forage in the bush microhabitat and during darker hours due to risk of predation. Also, daily renewal of seed resource patches and timing of nightly forag...
Article
Mechanistic approaches to understanding species coexistence and community structure have recently proved highly successful. We apply this approach to a sand dune community containing two common species of gerbils, Gerbillus allenbyi and G. pyramidum. Previous work suggested that coexistence is based on temporal variability in seed resource density...
Article
We have tested two hypotheses which may explain two different patterns which underlie coexistence in two species of desert gerbils (Gerbillus allenbyi and G. pyramidum). The two patterns are temporal partitioning of foraging activity and shared preference habitat selection. When sympatric, G. pyramidum uses the early part of the night most heavily...
Article
We investigated the effects of increasing rodent (Acomys cahirinus and Gerbillus dasyurus) predation efficiency on their population density and the population of their prey, the desert snail (Trochoidae seetzenii). The study was carried out on a rocky hillslope in the Central Negev Desert, Israel. Rodent predation on snails is limited by the number...
Article
Abramsky et al. developed a new technique to measure isoclines in the field. The method is based on the single-species habitat selection theory of Fretwell. Using short term experiments (3-4 wk), they tested it by measuring the isocline of Gerbillus allenbyi competing with G. pyramidum. In the present study, we measured the isocline again using a o...
Article
1.1.|We compared the standard operative temperatures (Tes) of two nocturnal desert rodents, Gerbillus allenbyi and G. pyramidum, in summer and winter in the Negev Desert, Israel. We found that Tes below the lower thermal critical temperature in both summer and winter.2.2.|We found significant differences in Tes among microhabitats. There was no sig...

Questions

Question (1)
Question
I wish to announce that there is money available for post-doc support in my institute, and if you know someone both interested in studying animal burrows and looking for an interesting period of post-doctoral research, please pass this announcement on to them.
For additional details: pinshow@exchange.bgu.ac.il

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Projects (2)
Project
Testing the role of learning in intra species competition between N1 and N2 while N1 definition is the colonies have advantage of learning under Lotka-Volterra model, and, N2 is the colonies of ignorance. In this point, we remark that no one of the users of Lotka-Volterra model, aim to intra species competition, although the fact that this model suit for mission if we change from 'species' to 'competitors'. After all the logistic curve (Verhulst 1838) is the base of the model (Lotka 1932), and logistic equation including the intra species competition. Further look show clearly that (dN_1)/dt=r_1 N_1 ((K_1-N_1)/K_1 ) is equal statement to N_1= K_1/(1+(e^(-rt)) ) . (see more in ' Using Lotka-Volterra model for testing hypothesis') Find out what is the cost for ignorance for N2 in terms of resource. Calculate foraging model for learning Using Lotka-Volterra model for testing hypothesis: We find the previous model suitable for the goals of this study after enormous number of studies (Holt 1985, Arditi et al. 2016, ). The model where tested in large number of cases and now days is a part of evolutionary ecology fundamentals ( ). Many outers expressed this model in advanced mathematical methods ( ) but we found that the classical fit our study. Lotka-Volterra model was originally aim to inter species competition ( ), but we use it in our study for intra species competitors. In doing this, and, by using the term 'competitors' instead of 'species', the learning advantage cam to be the major difference between competitors, in same way that the genetic variance is the difference between similar species ( ). In our research, Lotka-Volterra model is experimental tool we use for extracting the value of learning. The model: (dN_1)/dt=r_1 N_1 ((K_1-N_1)/K_1 ) , (dN_2)/dt=r_2 N_2 ((K_2-N_2)/K_2 ). For 2 competitors N1 vs N2: Competitor 1. (dN_1)/dt=r_1 N_1 ((K_1-N_1-αN_2)/K_1 ). Competitor 2. (dN_2)/dt=r_2 N_2 ((K_2-N_2-βN_1)/K_2 ). α : The effect an individual of competitor 2 has on the population growth of competitor 1. β: The effect an individual of competitor 1 has on the population growth of competitor 2. In terms of resource use N1 = K1 and N2 = K2 under the assumption that resource use is limitation of population ( ). In this case we are able to state that resource use equal to population size, and. If we represent the gain of resource exploitation in G, the all equation may be expressed: (dG_1)/dt=r_1 G_1 ((K_1-G_1-αG_2)/K_1 ) And (dG_2)/dt=r_2 G_2 ((K_2-G_2-βG_1)/K_2 ) α : The effect of resource use of competitor 2 has on the resource use of competitor 1. β: The effect of resource use of competitor 1 has on the resource use of competitor 2. For example, if 4 individuals of competitor 2 namely: N2 are equal to 1 competitor of N1 in their resource use, hence, the ratio is 1/4 and α = 0.25. In this point we are deal with resource use directly and state: G2/G1 = 1/4, α = 0.25. In experiments level we wish to see strong signification between G and N. Lotka-Volterra model lead as well to: 0=r_1 N_1 ((K_1-N_1-αN_2)/K_1 ) then K_1-N_1-αN_2=0 then N_1=K_1-αN_2 isocline 0 of population growth of N1 or N1 = K1. Since we use Lotka-Volterra model for experiment deal with intra species competition we do not need to compute the N2 competitor since both of them from same species. We give in the experiment only one advantage to N1; knowledge and training of solving a maze that N2 do not have as state in hypothesis.