Hermit crabs in the diet of Pigeon Guillemots at Kachemak Bay, Alaska

Colonial Waterbirds
By: , and 



Guillemots (Cepphus spp.) feed their chicks a diet that is almost exclusively fish. We observed Pigeon Guillemots (C. columba) at two colonies in Alaska where hermit crabs (Crustacea: Anomura) were a major part of the diet for some nestlings. Hermit crabs were delivered to three of five observed nests at one colony, comprised between 2% and 22% of the items delivered at those nests, and were the second most common food type at one nest. Hermit crabs may be an attractive prey item when lipid-rich forage fish are scarce, and crabs living in gastropod shells that have been softened by encrustations of Suberites sponges may be vulnerable to guillemot predation.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Hermit crabs in the diet of Pigeon Guillemots at Kachemak Bay, Alaska
Series title Colonial Waterbirds
DOI 10.2307/1521913
Volume 21
Issue 2
Year Published 1998
Language English
Publisher The Waterbird Society
Contributing office(s) Alaska Science Center, Alaska Science Center Biology MFEB
Description 3 p.
First page 242
Last page 244
Country United States
State Alaska
Other Geospatial Cook Inlet, Kachemak Bay
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