A central concern of ecology has traditionally been foraging behavior. In its most basic form, optimal foraging theory states that organisms forage in such a way as to maximize their energy intake per unit time. In other words, they behave in such a way as to find, capture and consume food containing the most calories while expending the least amount of time possible in doing so.
The data for the search and handling times of the prey of the Glaucous-winged Gulls show that handling times are quite short relative to search times. The gulls do appear to employ a generalist foraging strategy, as predicted by optimal foraging theory.
The result that chewed trees were closer to the water accounts for the time and energy spent gathering and hauling. This is in accordance with the optimal foraging theory. (Link 3)
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