|Title||Antimicrobial activity of dogwood fruits (Cornus drummondii) from winter food caches of the eastern woodrat (Neotoma floridana )|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||1995|
|Authors||Post, DM, Urban, JE|
|Journal||Journal of Chemical Ecology|
|Keywords||antimicrobial activity, Bacillus psychrophilus, caching, Cornus drummondii, dogwood fruit, eastern woodrat, Escherichia coli, Neotoma floridana, Staphlococcus aureus|
Post-harvest loss of resources to microbial competitors affects a number of species of animals, and many of them have evolved behaviors that reduce the likelihood of such loss. We previously described the inhibition ofBacillus psychrophilus by dogwood fruits (Cornus drummondii), which can comprise a significant portion of the winter food cache of the eastern woodrat (Neotoma floridana). The present study is a further investigation of the ability of dogwood fruits to inhibit growth ofB. psychrophilus. Additionally, we tested the antimicrobial activity of dogwood fruits onEscherichia coli andStaphlococcus aureus. Results of our study indicate that fresh fruits inhibit the growth ofB. psychrophilus andS. aureus but notE. coli. However, fruits taken from woodrat dens after four and six months storage inhibited growth of all three species of bacteria. Further, the strength of inhibition increased over the test period. We suggest the presence of an inhibitor allows woodrats to compete effectively for a valuable and limited food resource.