What drives foraging behaviour of the intertidal limpet Cellana grata? A quantitative test of a dynamic optimization model

Giacomo Santini, Avis Ngan, Michael T. Burrows, Guido Chelazzi, Gray A. Williams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


State-dependent models (SDMs) of behaviour, based on dynamic fitness-maximizing optimality routines, offer a powerful approach to understanding the plasticity and complexity in the timing of behaviour of foraging animals; yet, they are rarely developed for individual species. Such models permit evaluation of the sensitivity of predicted behavioural patterns to parameters that describe the main elements of environmental risk and the dynamics of internal states, such as energy stores, that determine motivational state.

Here, we develop a state-dependent dynamic model for the temporal organization of foraging in a cyclic environment, using the intertidal grazing limpet Cellana grata as a test species. Estimates of relevant parameter values were obtained wherever possible and a sensitivity analysis performed to estimate the relative importance of these parameters.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)963-972
Number of pages9
JournalFunctional Ecology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 27 Jan 2014


  • intertidal grazers
  • optimal foraging
  • physiological constraints
  • state-dependent model

Cite this