Physiological proteins in resource-limited herbivores experiencing a population die-off

Romain Garnier, AI Bento, C Hansen, JG Pilkington, JM Pemberton & AL Graham
Nutrient availability is predicted to interact with herbivore population densities. Competition for low quality food at high density may reduce summer food intake, and in turn winter survival. Conversely, low population density may favour physiological recovery through better access to better quality spring forage. Here, we take advantage of the long-term study of the Soay sheep population of St. Kilda (Scotland) to measure plasma protein markers and immunity in two consecutive summers with contrasting population...
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