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Sample records for planktivorous fish-like predators

  1. The impact of fish predation and cyanobacteria on zooplankton size structure in 96 subtropical lakes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jing Zhang

    Full Text Available Zooplankton are relatively small in size in the subtropical regions. This characteristic has been attributed to intense predation pressure, high nutrient loading and cyanobacterial biomass. To provide further information on the effect of predation and cyanobacteria on zooplankton size structure, we analyzed data from 96 shallow aquaculture lakes along the Yangtze River. Contrary to former studies, both principal components analysis and multiple regression analysis showed that the mean zooplankton size was positively related to fish yield. The studied lakes were grouped into three types, namely, natural fishing lakes with low nutrient loading (Type1, planktivorous fish-dominated lakes (Type 2, and eutrophic lakes with high cyanobacterial biomass (Type 3. A marked difference in zooplankton size structure was found among these groups. The greatest mean zooplankton size was observed in Type 2 lakes, but zooplankton density was the lowest. Zooplankton abundance was highest in Type 3 lakes and increased with increasing cyanobacterial biomass. Zooplankton mean size was negatively correlated with cyanobacterial biomass. No obvious trends were found in Type 1 lakes. These results were reflected by the normalized biomass size spectrum, which showed a unimodal shape with a peak at medium sizes in Type 2 lakes and a peak at small sizes in Type 3 lakes. These results indicated a relative increase in medium-sized and small-sized species in Types 2 and 3 lakes, respectively. Our results suggested that fish predation might have a negative effect on zooplankton abundance but a positive effect on zooplankton size structure. High cyanobacterial biomass most likely caused a decline in the zooplankton size and encouraged the proliferation of small zooplankton. We suggest that both planktivorous fish and cyanobacteria have substantial effects on the shaping of zooplankton community, particularly in the lakes in the eastern plain along the Yangtze River where

  2. Sediment-induced turbidity impairs foraging performance and prey choice of planktivorous coral reef fishes.

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    Johansen, J L; Jones, G P

    2013-09-01

    Sedimentation is a substantial threat to aquatic ecosystems and a primary cause of habitat degradation on near-shore coral reefs. Although numerous studies have demonstrated major impacts of sedimentation and turbidity on corals, virtually nothing is known of the sensitivity of reef fishes. Planktivorous fishes are an important trophic group that funnels pelagic energy sources into reef ecosystems. These fishes are visual predators whose foraging is likely to be impaired by turbidity, but the threshold for such effects and their magnitude are unknown. This study examined the effect of sediment-induced turbidity on foraging in four species of planktivorous damselfishes (Pomacentridae) of the Great Barrier Reef, including inshore and offshore species that potentially differ in tolerance for turbidity. An experimental flow tunnel was used to quantify their ability to catch mobile and immobile planktonic prey under different levels of turbidity and velocity in the range encountered on natural and disturbed reefs. Turbidity of just 4 NTU (nephelometric turbidity units) reduced average attack success by up to 56%, with higher effect sizes for species with offshore distributions. Only the inshore species (Neopomacentrus bankieri), which frequently encounters this turbidity on coastal reefs, could maintain high prey capture success. At elevated turbidity similar to that found on disturbed reefs (8 NTU), attack success was reduced in all species examined by up to 69%. These reductions in attack success led to a 21-24% decrease in foraging rates for all mid to outer-shelf species, in spite of increasing attack rates at high turbidity. Although effects of turbidity varied among species, it always depended heavily on prey mobility and ambient velocity. Attack success was up to 14 times lower on mobile prey, leaving species relatively incapable of foraging on anything but immobile prey at high turbidity. Effects of turbidity were particularly prominent at higher velocities, as

  3. Capture, swallowing, and egestion of microplastics by a planktivorous juvenile fish.

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    Ory, Nicolas Christian; Gallardo, Camila; Lenz, Mark; Thiel, Martin

    2018-05-11

    Microplastics (microplastic ingestion by fish are still unclear, although they are important to determine the pathway of microplastics along marine food webs. Here we conducted experiments in the laboratory to examine microplastic ingestion (capture and swallowing) and egestion by juveniles of the planktivorous palm ruff, Seriolella violacea (Centrolophidae). As expected, fish captured preferentially black microplastics, similar to food pellets, whereas microplastics of other colours (blue, translucent, and yellow) were mostly co-captured when floating close to food pellets. Microplastics captured without food were almost always spit out, and were only swallowed when they were mixed with food in the fish's mouth. Food probably produced a 'gustatory trap' that impeded the fish to discriminate and reject the microplastics. Most fish (93% of total) egested all the microplastics after 7 days, on average, and 49 days at most, substantially longer than food pellets (microplastics on fish were observable, but potential sublethal effects of microplastics on the fish physiological and behavioural responses still need to be tested. This study highlights that visually-oriented planktivorous fish, many species of which are of commercial value and ecological importance within marine food webs, are susceptible to ingest microplastics resembling or floating close to their planktonic prey. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. A real-time PCR assay to estimate invertebrate and fish predation on anchovy eggs in the Bay of Biscay

    KAUST Repository

    Albaina, A.

    2015-02-01

    In order to investigate the role of predation on eggs and larvae in the recruitment of anchovy (Engraulis encrasicolus), sardine (Sardina pilchardus), sprat (Sprattus sprattus) and 52 macrozooplankton taxa were assayed for anchovy remains in the gut during the 2010 spawning season using a molecular method. This real-time PCR based assay was capable of detecting 0.005. ng of anchovy DNA (roughly 1/100 of a single egg assay) in a reliable way and allowed detecting predation events up to 6. h after ingestion by small zooplankton taxa. A total of 1069 macrozooplankton individuals, 237 sardines and 213 sprats were tested. Both fish species and 32 macrozooplankton taxa showed remains of anchovy DNA within their stomach contents. The two main findings are (1) that the previously neglected macrozooplankton impact in anchovy eggs/larvae mortality is in the same order of magnitude of that due to planktivorous fishes and that, (2) the predation pressure was notably different in the two main spawning centers of Bay of Biscay anchovy. While relatively low mortality rates were recorded at the shelf-break spawning center, a higher predation pressure from both fish and macrozooplankton was exerted at the shelf one.

  5. A dynamic optimization model of the diel vertical distribution of a pelagic planktivorous fish

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    Rosland, Rune; Giske, Jarl

    A stochastic dynamic optimization model for the diel depth distribution of juveniles and adults of the mesopelagic planktivore Maurolicus muelleri (Gmelin) is developed and used for a winter situation. Observations from Masfjorden, western Norway, reveal differences in vertical distribution, growth and mortality between juveniles and adults in January. Juveniles stay within the upper 100m with high feeding rates, while adults stay within the 100-150m zone with very low feeding rates during the diel cycle. The difference in depth profitability is assumed to be caused by age-dependent processes, and are calculated from a mechanistic model for visual feeding. The environment is described as a set of habitats represented by discrete depth intervals along the vertical axis, differing with respect to light intensity, food abundance, predation risk and temperature. The short time interval (24h) allows fitness to be linearly related to growth (feeding), assuming that growth increases the future reproductive output of the fish. Optimal depth position is calculated from balancing feeding opportunity against mortality risk, where the fitness reward gained by feeding is weighted against the danger of being killed by a predator. A basic run is established, and the model is validated by comparing predictions and observations. The sensitivity for different parameter values is also tested. The modelled vertical distributions and feeding patterns of juvenile and adult fish correspond well with the observations, and the assumption of age differences in mortality-feeding trade-offs seems adequate to explain the different depth profitability of the two age groups. The results indicate a preference for crepuscular feeding activity of the juveniles, and the vertical distribution of zooplankton seems to be the most important environmental factor regulating the adult depth position during the winter months in Masfjorden.

  6. Population dynamics of calanoid copepods and the implications of their predation by clupeid fish in the Central Baltic Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Möllmann, C.; Köster, Fritz

    2002-01-01

    . Additionally this study investigated the effect of predation by the major planktivorous fish species herring (Clupea harengus) and sprat (Sprattus sprattus) for the period 1977-1996 in the Gotland Basin (Central Baltic Sea). Examination of consumption by these fish species in relation to copepod production...... by sprat on CV/CVI of both copepod species in spring resulted in higher copepod mortality rates. In consequence, based on these results we suggest that the increase in the sprat stock since the late 1980s contributed to a decline of P. elongatus, and additionally prevented an even more pronounced...

  7. Fish ladders: safe fish passage or hotspot for predation?

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    Angelo Antonio Agostinho

    Full Text Available Fish ladders are a strategy for conserving biodiversity, as they can provide connectivity between fragmented habitats and reduce predation on shoals that accumulate immediately below dams. Although the impact of predation downstream of reservoirs has been investigated, especially in juvenile salmonids during their downstream movements, nothing is known about predation on Neotropical fish in the attraction and containment areas commonly found in translocation facilities. This study analysed predation in a fish passage system at the Lajeado Dam on the Tocantins River in Brazil. The abundance, distribution, and the permanence (time spent of large predatory fish along the ladder, the injuries imposed by piranhas during passage and the presence of other vertebrate predators were investigated. From December 2002 to October 2003, sampling was conducted in four regions (downstream, along the ladder, in the forebay, and upstream of the reservoir using gillnets, cast nets and counts or visual observations. The captured fish were tagged with thread and beads, and any mutilations were registered. Fish, birds and dolphins were the main predator groups observed, with a predominance of the first two groups. The entrance to the ladder, in the downstream region, was the area with the highest number of large predators and was the only region with relevant non-fish vertebrates. The main predatory fish species were Rhaphiodon vulpinus, Hydrolycus armatus, and Serrasalmus rhombeus. Tagged individuals were detected predating along the ladder for up to 90 days. Mutilations caused by Serrasalmus attacks were noted in 36% of species and 4% of individuals at the top of the ladder. Our results suggested that the high density of fish in the restricted ladder environment, which is associated with injuries suffered along the ladder course and the presence of multiple predator groups with different predation strategies, transformed the fish corridor into a hotspot for

  8. Turbulence-enhanced prey encounter rates in larval fish : Effects of spatial scale, larval behaviour and size

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kiørboe, Thomas; MacKenzie, Brian

    1995-01-01

    Turbulent water motion has several effects on the feeding ecology of larval fish and other planktivorous predators. In this paper, we consider the appropriate spatial scales for estimating relative velocities between larval fish predators and their prey, and the effect that different choices of s...... in the range in which turbulent intensity has an overall positive effect on larval fish ingestion rate probability. However, experimental data to test the model predictions are lacking. We suggest that the model inputs require further empirical study....

  9. Invasive predator tips the balance of symmetrical competition between native coral-reef fishes.

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    Kindinger, Tye L

    2018-04-01

    The importance of competition and predation in structuring ecological communities is typically examined separately such that interactions between these processes are seldom understood. By causing large reductions in native prey, invasive predators may modify native species interactions. I conducted a manipulative field experiment in The Bahamas to investigate the possibility that the invasive Pacific red lionfish (Pterois volitans) alters competition between planktivorous fairy and blackcap basslets (Gramma loreto and Gramma melacara, respectively). Competition between these coral-reef fishes is known to have symmetrical effects on the juveniles of both species, whereby the feeding positions under reef ledges and growth rates of these individuals are hindered. Following baseline censuses of local populations of competing basslets, I simultaneously manipulated the abundance of lionfish on entire reefs, and the abundance of basslets in local populations under isolated ledges within each reef, resulting in three treatments: unmanipulated control populations of both basslets, reduced abundance of fairy basslet, and reduced abundance of blackcap basslet. For eight weeks, I measured the change in biomass and feeding position of 2-5 cm size classes of each basslet species and calculated the growth rates of ~2 cm individuals using a standard mark-and-recapture method. Experimental populations were filmed at dusk using automated video cameras to quantify the behavior of lionfish overlapping with basslets. Video playback revealed lionfish hunted across all ledge positions, regardless of which basslet species were present, yet lionfish differentially reduced the biomass of only juvenile (2 cm) fairy basslet. Predation reduced the effects of interspecific competition on juvenile blackcap basslet as evidenced by corresponding shifts in feeding position toward coveted front edges of ledges and increases in growth rates that were comparable to the response of these fish in

  10. Effects of microplastic exposure on the body condition and behaviour of planktivorous reef fish (Acanthochromis polyacanthus)

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    Hoogenboom, Mia O.

    2018-01-01

    The effect of a pollutant on the base of the food web can have knock-on effects for trophic structure and ecosystem functioning. In this study we assess the effect of microplastic exposure on juveniles of a planktivorous fish (Acanthochromis polyacanthus), a species that is widespread and abundant on Indo-Pacific coral reefs. Under five different plastic concentration treatments, with plastics the same size as the natural food particles (mean 2mm diameter), there was no significant effect of plastic exposure on fish growth, body condition or behaviour. The amount of plastics found in the gastro-intestinal (GI) tract was low, with a range of one to eight particles remaining in the gut of individual fish at the end of a 6-week plastic-exposure period, suggesting that these fish are able to detect and avoid ingesting microplastics in this size range. However, in a second experiment the number of plastics in the GI tract vastly increased when plastic particle size was reduced to approximately one quarter the size of the food particles, with a maximum of 2102 small (plastic exposure period. Under conditions where food was replaced by plastic, there was a negative effect on the growth and body condition of the fish. These results suggest plastics could become more of a problem as they break up into smaller size classes, and that environmental changes that lead to a decrease in plankton concentrations combined with microplastic presence is likely have a greater influence on fish populations than microplastic presence alone. PMID:29494635

  11. Zooplankton mortality in 3D ecosystem modelling considering variable spatial–temporal fish consumptions in the North Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Maar, Marie; Rindorf, Anna; Møller, Eva Friis

    2014-01-01

    We tested the feasibility of imposing mesozooplankton mortality into a 3D model based on estimated consumption rates of the dominant planktivorous fish in the North Sea-Kattegat area. The spatial biomass distribution of Atlantic herring (Clupea harengus), horse mackerel (Trachurus trachurus....... The fish larvae grazing pressure was obtained from a spatial, size-based larval community model. In this model, larvae, herring and sandeel were the most important fish predators on mesozooplankton, but these groups had different spatial and temporal (seasonal) distributions. Fish larvae were particularly......, production and mortality. In the present study, the index was kept relatively simple and can be further developed with respect to the description of fish as well carnivorous zooplankton ingestion rates. The data input required to create the fish index is i) planktivorous fish stock biomasses and ii) relative...

  12. Effects of microplastic exposure on the body condition and behaviour of planktivorous reef fish (Acanthochromis polyacanthus).

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    Critchell, Kay; Hoogenboom, Mia O

    2018-01-01

    The effect of a pollutant on the base of the food web can have knock-on effects for trophic structure and ecosystem functioning. In this study we assess the effect of microplastic exposure on juveniles of a planktivorous fish (Acanthochromis polyacanthus), a species that is widespread and abundant on Indo-Pacific coral reefs. Under five different plastic concentration treatments, with plastics the same size as the natural food particles (mean 2mm diameter), there was no significant effect of plastic exposure on fish growth, body condition or behaviour. The amount of plastics found in the gastro-intestinal (GI) tract was low, with a range of one to eight particles remaining in the gut of individual fish at the end of a 6-week plastic-exposure period, suggesting that these fish are able to detect and avoid ingesting microplastics in this size range. However, in a second experiment the number of plastics in the GI tract vastly increased when plastic particle size was reduced to approximately one quarter the size of the food particles, with a maximum of 2102 small (< 300μm diameter) particles present in the gut of individual fish after a 1-week plastic exposure period. Under conditions where food was replaced by plastic, there was a negative effect on the growth and body condition of the fish. These results suggest plastics could become more of a problem as they break up into smaller size classes, and that environmental changes that lead to a decrease in plankton concentrations combined with microplastic presence is likely have a greater influence on fish populations than microplastic presence alone.

  13. Predator avoidance in extremophile fish.

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    Bierbach, David; Schulte, Matthias; Herrmann, Nina; Zimmer, Claudia; Arias-Rodriguez, Lenin; Indy, Jeane Rimber; Riesch, Rüdiger; Plath, Martin

    2013-02-06

    Extreme habitats are often characterized by reduced predation pressures, thus representing refuges for the inhabiting species. The present study was designed to investigate predator avoidance of extremophile populations of Poecilia mexicana and P. sulphuraria that either live in hydrogen sulfide-rich (sulfidic) springs or cave habitats, both of which are known to have impoverished piscine predator regimes. Focal fishes that inhabited sulfidic springs showed slightly weaker avoidance reactions when presented with several naturally occurring predatory cichlids, but strongest differences to populations from non-sulfidic habitats were found in a decreased shoaling tendency with non-predatory swordtail (Xiphophorus hellerii) females. When comparing avoidance reactions between P. mexicana from a sulfidic cave (Cueva del Azufre) and the adjacent sulfidic surface creek (El Azufre), we found only slight differences in predator avoidance, but surface fish reacted much more strongly to the non-predatory cichlid Vieja bifasciata. Our third experiment was designed to disentangle learned from innate effects of predator recognition. We compared laboratory-reared (i.e., predator-naïve) and wild-caught (i.e., predator-experienced) individuals of P. mexicana from a non-sulfidic river and found no differences in their reaction towards the presented predators. Overall, our results indicate (1) that predator avoidance is still functional in extremophile Poecilia spp. and (2) that predator recognition and avoidance reactions have a strong genetic basis.

  14. Predator Avoidance in Extremophile Fish

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    Bierbach, David; Schulte, Matthias; Herrmann, Nina; Zimmer, Claudia; Arias-Rodriguez, Lenin; Indy, Jeane Rimber; Riesch, Rüdiger; Plath, Martin

    2013-01-01

    Extreme habitats are often characterized by reduced predation pressures, thus representing refuges for the inhabiting species. The present study was designed to investigate predator avoidance of extremophile populations of Poecilia mexicana and P. sulphuraria that either live in hydrogen sulfide-rich (sulfidic) springs or cave habitats, both of which are known to have impoverished piscine predator regimes. Focal fishes that inhabited sulfidic springs showed slightly weaker avoidance reactions when presented with several naturally occurring predatory cichlids, but strongest differences to populations from non-sulfidic habitats were found in a decreased shoaling tendency with non-predatory swordtail (Xiphophorus hellerii) females. When comparing avoidance reactions between P. mexicana from a sulfidic cave (Cueva del Azufre) and the adjacent sulfidic surface creek (El Azufre), we found only slight differences in predator avoidance, but surface fish reacted much more strongly to the non-predatory cichlid Vieja bifasciata. Our third experiment was designed to disentangle learned from innate effects of predator recognition. We compared laboratory-reared (i.e., predator-naïve) and wild-caught (i.e., predator-experienced) individuals of P. mexicana from a non-sulfidic river and found no differences in their reaction towards the presented predators. Overall, our results indicate (1) that predator avoidance is still functional in extremophile Poecilia spp. and (2) that predator recognition and avoidance reactions have a strong genetic basis. PMID:25371337

  15. Predator effects on reef fish settlement depend on predator origin and recruit density.

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    Benkwitt, Cassandra E

    2017-04-01

    During major life-history transitions, animals often experience high mortality rates due to predation, making predator avoidance particularly advantageous during these times. There is mixed evidence from a limited number of studies, however, regarding how predator presence influences settlement of coral-reef fishes and it is unknown how other potentially mediating factors, including predator origin (native vs. nonnative) or interactions among conspecific recruits, mediate the non-consumptive effects of predators on reef fish settlement. During a field experiment in the Caribbean, approximately 52% fewer mahogany snapper (Lutjanus mahogoni) recruited to reefs with a native predator (graysby grouper, Cephalopholis cruentata) than to predator-free control reefs and reefs with an invasive predator (red lionfish, Pterois volitans) regardless of predator diet. These results suggest that snapper recruits do not recognize nonnative lionfish as a threat. However, these effects depended on the density of conspecific recruits, with evidence that competition may limit the response of snapper to even native predators at the highest recruit densities. In contrast, there was no effect of predator presence or conspecific density on the recruitment of bicolor damselfish (Stegastes partitus). These context-dependent responses of coral-reef fishes to predators during settlement may influence individual survival and shape subsequent population and community dynamics. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  16. Fishing top predators indirectly affects condition and reproduction in a reef-fish community.

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    Walsh, S M; Hamilton, S L; Ruttenberg, B I; Donovan, M K; Sandin, S A

    2012-03-01

    To examine the indirect effects of fishing on energy allocation in non-target prey species, condition and reproductive potential were measured for five representative species (two-spot red snapper Lutjanus bohar, arc-eye hawkfish Paracirrhites arcatus, blackbar devil Plectroglyphidodon dickii, bicolour chromis Chromis margaritifer and whitecheek surgeonfish Acanthurus nigricans) from three reef-fish communities with different levels of fishing and predator abundance in the northern Line Islands, central Pacific Ocean. Predator abundance differed by five to seven-fold among islands, and despite no clear differences in prey abundance, differences in prey condition and reproductive potential among islands were found. Body condition (mean body mass adjusted for length) was consistently lower at sites with higher predator abundance for three of the four prey species. Mean liver mass (adjusted for total body mass), an indicator of energy reserves, was also lower at sites with higher predator abundance for three of the prey species and the predator. Trends in reproductive potential were less clear. Mean gonad mass (adjusted for total body mass) was high where predator abundance was high for only one of the three species in which it was measured. Evidence of consistently low prey body condition and energy reserves in a diverse suite of species at reefs with high predator abundance suggests that fishing may indirectly affect non-target prey-fish populations through changes in predation and predation risk. © 2012 The Authors. Journal of Fish Biology © 2012 The Fisheries Society of the British Isles.

  17. Fish predation by semi-aquatic spiders: a global pattern.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Nyffeler

    Full Text Available More than 80 incidences of fish predation by semi-aquatic spiders--observed at the fringes of shallow freshwater streams, rivers, lakes, ponds, swamps, and fens--are reviewed. We provide evidence that fish predation by semi-aquatic spiders is geographically widespread, occurring on all continents except Antarctica. Fish predation by spiders appears to be more common in warmer areas between 40° S and 40° N. The fish captured by spiders, usually ranging from 2-6 cm in length, are among the most common fish taxa occurring in their respective geographic area (e.g., mosquitofish [Gambusia spp.] in the southeastern USA, fish of the order Characiformes in the Neotropics, killifish [Aphyosemion spp.] in Central and West Africa, as well as Australian native fish of the genera Galaxias, Melanotaenia, and Pseudomugil. Naturally occurring fish predation has been witnessed in more than a dozen spider species from the superfamily Lycosoidea (families Pisauridae, Trechaleidae, and Lycosidae, in two species of the superfamily Ctenoidea (family Ctenidae, and in one species of the superfamily Corinnoidea (family Liocranidae. The majority of reports on fish predation by spiders referred to pisaurid spiders of the genera Dolomedes and Nilus (>75% of observed incidences. There is laboratory evidence that spiders from several more families (e.g., the water spider Argyroneta aquatica [Cybaeidae], the intertidal spider Desis marina [Desidae], and the 'swimming' huntsman spider Heteropoda natans [Sparassidae] predate fish as well. Our finding of such a large diversity of spider families being engaged in fish predation is novel. Semi-aquatic spiders captured fish whose body length exceeded the spiders' body length (the captured fish being, on average, 2.2 times as long as the spiders. Evidence suggests that fish prey might be an occasional prey item of substantial nutritional importance.

  18. Fish predation by semi-aquatic spiders: a global pattern.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nyffeler, Martin; Pusey, Bradley J

    2014-01-01

    More than 80 incidences of fish predation by semi-aquatic spiders--observed at the fringes of shallow freshwater streams, rivers, lakes, ponds, swamps, and fens--are reviewed. We provide evidence that fish predation by semi-aquatic spiders is geographically widespread, occurring on all continents except Antarctica. Fish predation by spiders appears to be more common in warmer areas between 40° S and 40° N. The fish captured by spiders, usually ranging from 2-6 cm in length, are among the most common fish taxa occurring in their respective geographic area (e.g., mosquitofish [Gambusia spp.] in the southeastern USA, fish of the order Characiformes in the Neotropics, killifish [Aphyosemion spp.] in Central and West Africa, as well as Australian native fish of the genera Galaxias, Melanotaenia, and Pseudomugil). Naturally occurring fish predation has been witnessed in more than a dozen spider species from the superfamily Lycosoidea (families Pisauridae, Trechaleidae, and Lycosidae), in two species of the superfamily Ctenoidea (family Ctenidae), and in one species of the superfamily Corinnoidea (family Liocranidae). The majority of reports on fish predation by spiders referred to pisaurid spiders of the genera Dolomedes and Nilus (>75% of observed incidences). There is laboratory evidence that spiders from several more families (e.g., the water spider Argyroneta aquatica [Cybaeidae], the intertidal spider Desis marina [Desidae], and the 'swimming' huntsman spider Heteropoda natans [Sparassidae]) predate fish as well. Our finding of such a large diversity of spider families being engaged in fish predation is novel. Semi-aquatic spiders captured fish whose body length exceeded the spiders' body length (the captured fish being, on average, 2.2 times as long as the spiders). Evidence suggests that fish prey might be an occasional prey item of substantial nutritional importance.

  19. Cormorant predation on PIT-tagged lake fish

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skov, Christian; Jepsen, Niels; Baktoft, Henrik

    2014-01-01

    The present study use data from recovered PIT (Passive Integrated Transponder) tags to explore species-and size-specific annual predation rates by cormorants on three common lacustrine fishes (size range 120-367 mm) in a European lake; roach (Rutilus rutilus), common bream (Abramis brama) and perch...... (Perca fluviatilis). In addition, we quantify the level of age/size truncation that cormorant predation could introduce in a population of perch, an important fish for recreational angling as well as for trophic interactions and ecosystem function in European lakes. Based on three years of PIT tagging...... of fish in Lake Viborg and subsequent recoveries of PIT tags from nearby cormorant roosting and breeding sites, we show that cormorants are major predators of roach, bream and perch within the size groups we investigated and for all species larger individuals had higher predation rates. Perch appear...

  20. Predator-induced demographic shifts in coral reef fish assemblages

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    Ruttenberg, B.I.; Hamilton, S.L.; Walsh, S.M.; Donovan, M.K.; Friedlander, A.; DeMartini, E.; Sala, E.; Sandin, S.A.

    2011-01-01

    In recent years, it has become apparent that human impacts have altered community structure in coastal and marine ecosystems worldwide. Of these, fishing is one of the most pervasive, and a growing body of work suggests that fishing can have strong effects on the ecology of target species, especially top predators. However, the effects of removing top predators on lower trophic groups of prey fishes are less clear, particularly in highly diverse and trophically complex coral reef ecosystems. We examined patterns of abundance, size structure, and age-based demography through surveys and collection-based studies of five fish species from a variety of trophic levels at Kiritimati and Palmyra, two nearby atolls in the Northern Line Islands. These islands have similar biogeography and oceanography, and yet Kiritimati has ~10,000 people with extensive local fishing while Palmyra is a US National Wildlife Refuge with no permanent human population, no fishing, and an intact predator fauna. Surveys indicated that top predators were relatively larger and more abundant at unfished Palmyra, while prey functional groups were relatively smaller but showed no clear trends in abundance as would be expected from classic trophic cascades. Through detailed analyses of focal species, we found that size and longevity of a top predator were lower at fished Kiritimati than at unfished Palmyra. Demographic patterns also shifted dramatically for 4 of 5 fish species in lower trophic groups, opposite in direction to the top predator, including decreases in average size and longevity at Palmyra relative to Kiritimati. Overall, these results suggest that fishing may alter community structure in complex and non-intuitive ways, and that indirect demographic effects should be considered more broadly in ecosystem-based management. ?? 2011 Ruttenberg et al.

  1. Predator-induced demographic shifts in coral reef fish assemblages.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin I Ruttenberg

    Full Text Available In recent years, it has become apparent that human impacts have altered community structure in coastal and marine ecosystems worldwide. Of these, fishing is one of the most pervasive, and a growing body of work suggests that fishing can have strong effects on the ecology of target species, especially top predators. However, the effects of removing top predators on lower trophic groups of prey fishes are less clear, particularly in highly diverse and trophically complex coral reef ecosystems. We examined patterns of abundance, size structure, and age-based demography through surveys and collection-based studies of five fish species from a variety of trophic levels at Kiritimati and Palmyra, two nearby atolls in the Northern Line Islands. These islands have similar biogeography and oceanography, and yet Kiritimati has ∼10,000 people with extensive local fishing while Palmyra is a US National Wildlife Refuge with no permanent human population, no fishing, and an intact predator fauna. Surveys indicated that top predators were relatively larger and more abundant at unfished Palmyra, while prey functional groups were relatively smaller but showed no clear trends in abundance as would be expected from classic trophic cascades. Through detailed analyses of focal species, we found that size and longevity of a top predator were lower at fished Kiritimati than at unfished Palmyra. Demographic patterns also shifted dramatically for 4 of 5 fish species in lower trophic groups, opposite in direction to the top predator, including decreases in average size and longevity at Palmyra relative to Kiritimati. Overall, these results suggest that fishing may alter community structure in complex and non-intuitive ways, and that indirect demographic effects should be considered more broadly in ecosystem-based management.

  2. Assessing Potential Vulnerability and Response of Fish to Simulated Avian Predation after Exposure to Psychotropic Pharmaceuticals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melanie L. Hedgespeth

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Psychotropic pharmaceuticals present in the environment may impact organisms both directly and via interaction strengths with other organisms, including predators; therefore, this study examined the potential effects of pharmaceuticals on behavioral responses of fish to avian predators. Wild-caught juvenile perch (Perca fluviatilis were assayed using a striking bird model after a seven-day exposure to psychotropic pharmaceuticals (the antidepressants fluoxetine or sertraline, or the β-blocker propranolol under the hypotheses that exposure would increase vulnerability to avian predation via increasing the probability of predator encounter as well as degrading evasive behaviors upon encounter. None of the substances significantly affected swimming activity of the fish, nor did they increase vulnerability by affecting encounter probability or evasive endpoints compared to control treatments. Counter to our expectations, fish exposed to 100 μg/L fluoxetine (but no other concentrations or pharmaceuticals were less likely to enter the open area of the arena, i.e., less likely to engage in risky behavior that could lead to predator encounters. Additionally, all fish exposed to environmentally relevant, low concentrations of sertraline (0.12 μg/L and propranolol (0.1 μg/L sought refuge after the simulated attack. Our unexpected results warrant further research as they have interesting implications on how these psychotropic pharmaceuticals may affect predator-prey interactions spanning the terrestrial-aquatic interface.

  3. Small nonnative fishes as predators of larval razorback suckers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carpenter, J.; Mueller, G.A.

    2008-01-01

    The razorback sucker (Xyrauchen texanus), an endangered big-river fish of the Colorado River basin, has demonstrated no sustainable recruitment in 4 decades, despite presence of spawning adults and larvae. Lack of adequate recruitment has been attributed to several factors, including predation by nonnative fishes. Substantial funding and effort has been expended on mechanically removing nonnative game fishes, typically targeting large predators. As a result, abundance of larger predators has declined, but the abundance of small nonnative fishes has increased in some areas. We conducted laboratory experiments to determine if small nonnative fishes would consume larval razorback suckers. We tested adults of three small species (threadfin shad, Dorosoma petenense; red shiner, Cyprinella lutrensis; fathead minnow, Pimephales promelas) and juveniles of six larger species (common carp, Cyprinus carpio; yellow bullhead, Ameiurus natalis; channel catfish, Ictalurus punctatus; rainbow trout, Oncorhynchus mykiss; green sunfish, Lepomis cyanellus; bluegill, L. macrochirus). These nonnative fishes span a broad ecological range and are abundant within the historical range of the razorback sucker. All nine species fed on larval razorback suckers (total length, 9-16 mm). Our results suggest that predation by small nonnative fishes could be responsible for limiting recovery of this endangered species.

  4. Diet composition and food habits of demersal and pelagic marine fishes from Terengganu waters, east coast of Peninsular Malaysia

    OpenAIRE

    Bachok, Z.; Mansor, M.I.; Noordin, R.M.

    2004-01-01

    Fish stomachs from 18 demersal and pelagic fishes from the coast of Terengganu in Malaysia were examined. The components of the fishesÆ diets varied in number, weight, and their frequency of occurrence. The major food items in the stomachs of each species were determined using an Index of Relative Importance. A "conceptualö food web structure indicates that fish species in the study area can be classified into three predatory groups: (1) predators on largely planktivorous or pelagic species; ...

  5. Predation on exotic zebra mussels by native fishes: Effects on predator and prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magoulick, D.D.; Lewis, L.C.

    2002-01-01

    1. Exotic zebra mussels, Dreissena polymorpha, occur in southern U.S. waterways in high densities, but little is known about the interaction between native fish predators and zebra mussels. Previous studies have suggested that exotic zebra mussels are low profitability prey items and native vertebrate predators are unlikely to reduce zebra mussel densities. We tested these hypotheses by observing prey use of fishes, determining energy content of primary prey species of fishes, and conducting predator exclusion experiments in Lake Dardanelle, Arkansas. 2. Zebra mussels were the primary prey eaten by 52.9% of blue catfish, Ictalurus furcatus; 48.2% of freshwater drum, Aplodinotus grunniens; and 100% of adult redear sunfish, Lepomis microlophus. Blue catfish showed distinct seasonal prey shifts, feeding on zebra mussels in summer and shad, Dorosoma spp., during winter. Energy content (joules g-1) of blue catfish prey (threadfin shad, Dorosoma petenense; gizzard shad, D. cepedianum; zebra mussels; and asiatic clams, Corbicula fluminea) showed a significant species by season interaction, but shad were always significantly greater in energy content than bivalves examined as either ash-free dry mass or whole organism dry mass. Fish predators significantly reduced densities of large zebra mussels (>5 mm length) colonising clay tiles in the summers of 1997 and 1998, but predation effects on small zebra mussels (???5 mm length) were less clear. 3. Freshwater drum and redear sunfish process bivalve prey by crushing shells and obtain low amounts of higher-energy food (only the flesh), whereas blue catfish lack a shell-crushing apparatus and ingest large amounts of low-energy food per unit time (bivalves with their shells). Blue catfish appeared to select the abundant zebra mussel over the more energetically rich shad during summer, then shifted to shad during winter when shad experienced temperature-dependent stress and mortality. Native fish predators can suppress adult zebra

  6. Migration confers survival benefits against avian predators for partially migratory freshwater fish

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skov, Christian; Chapman, Ben B.; Baktoft, Henrik

    2013-01-01

    The importance of predation risk in shaping patterns of animal migration is not well studied, mostly owing to difficulties in accurately quantifying predation risk for migratory versus resident individuals. Here, we present data from an extensive field study, which shows that migration...... in a freshwater fish (roach, Rutilus rutilus) that commonly migrates from lakes to streams during winter confers a significant survival benefit with respect to bird (cormorant, Phalacrocorax carbo spp.) predation. We tagged over 2000 individual fish in two Scandinavian lakes over 4 years and monitored migratory...... behaviour using passive telemetry. Next, we calculated the predation vulnerability of fish with differing migration strategies, by recovering data from passive integrated transponder tags of fish eaten by cormorants at communal roosts close to the lakes. We show that fish can reduce their predation risk...

  7. Assessing predation risks for small fish in a large river ecosystem between contrasting habitats and turbidity conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dodrill, Michael J.; Yard, Mike; Pine, William E.

    2016-01-01

    This study examined predation risk for juvenile native fish between two riverine shoreline habitats, backwater and debris fan, across three discrete turbidity levels (low, intermediate, high) to understand environmental risks associated with habitat use in a section of the Colorado River in Grand Canyon, AZ. Inferences are particularly important to juvenile native fish, including the federally endangered humpback chub Gila cypha. This species uses a variety of habitats including backwaters which are often considered important rearing areas. Densities of two likely predators, adult rainbow trout Oncorhynchus mykiss and adult humpback chub, were estimated between habitats using binomial mixture models to examine whether higher predator density was associated with patterns of predation risk. Tethering experiments were used to quantify relative predation risk between habitats and turbidity conditions. Under low and intermediate turbidity conditions, debris fan habitat showed higher relative predation risk compared to backwaters. In both habitats the highest predation risk was observed during intermediate turbidity conditions. Density of likely predators did not significantly differ between these habitats. This information can help managers in Grand Canyon weigh flow policy options designed to increase backwater availability or extant turbidity conditions.

  8. Responses of phytoplankton to fish predation and nutrient loading in shallow lakes: a pan-European mesocosm experiment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van de Bund, W.; Romo, S.; Villena, M.J.; Valentín, M.; Van Donk, E.; Vicente, E.; Vakkilainen, K.; Svensson, M.; Stephen, D.; Ståhl-Delbanco, A.; Rueda, J.; Moss, B.; Rosa Miracle, M.; Kairesalo, T.; Hansson, L-A.; Hietala, J.; Gyllström, M.; Goma, J.; García, P.; Fernández-Aláez, M.; Fernández-Aláez, C.; Ferriol, C.; Collings, S.E.; Bécares, E.; Balayla, D.; Alfonso, T.

    2004-01-01

    1. The impacts of nutrients (phosphorus and nitrogen) and planktivorous fish on phytoplankton composition and biomass were studied in six shallow, macrophyte-dominated lakes across Europe using mesocosm experiments. 2. Phytoplankton biomass was more influenced by nutrients than by densities of

  9. Pollutants and fish predator/prey behavior: A review of laboratory and field approaches

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judith S. WEIS, Allison CANDELMO

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Fish behavior can be altered by contaminants. There is an extensive literature on laboratory behavioral assays, with many chemicals impairing feeding or predator avoidance. However, there is not extensive work on fishes that live in contaminated environments. Therefore, we then review our recent research on feeding and trophic relations of populations from contaminated estuaries compared with relatively unpolluted sites. The mummichog Fundulus heteroclitus, is a non-migratory fish; those from more contaminated areas are poor predators and slower to capture active prey (grass shrimp, Palaemonetes pugio. In the field, they consume much detritus and sediment, which is not nutritious. They are less active than fish from cleaner sites and more vulnerable to predation. They have altered thyroid glands and neurotransmitter levels, which may underlie altered behaviors. Fish from the reference site kept in tanks with sediment and food from the polluted site showed bioaccumulation and reduced prey capture after two months, although fish from the polluted site did not show significant improvement when maintained in a clean environment. Poor nutrition and predator avoidance may be responsible for their being smaller and having a shorter life span than reference fish. Bluefish Pomatomus saltatrix, are a marine species in which the young-of-the-year spend their first summer in estuaries. We found bioaccumulation of contaminants and reduced activity, schooling, and feeding in young-of-the-year bluefish from a relatively unpolluted site that were fed prey fish from a contaminated site. They also had altered thyroid glands and neurotransmitter levels. Many field-caught specimens had empty stomachs, which is rare in this species. In the fall, when they migrate back out to the ocean, they are smaller, slower, and more likely to starve or to be eaten than those that spent their summer in cleaner estuaries [Current Zoology 58 (1: 9-20, 2012].

  10. What is the influence of a reduction of planktivorous and benthivorous fish on water quality in temperate eutrophic lakes? A systematic review

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bernes, Claes; Carpenter, Stephen R.; Gårdmark, Anna

    2015-01-01

    three years afterwards. Piscivore stocking alone has no significant effect. The response of chlorophyll a levels to biomanipulation is stronger in lakes where fish removal is intense, and in lakes which are small and/or have high pre-manipulation concentrations of total phosphorus. Conclusions: Our......Background: In recent decades, many attempts have been made to restore eutrophic lakes through biomanipulation. Reducing the populations of planktivorous and benthivorous fish (either directly or through stocking of piscivorous fish) may induce ecosystem changes that increase water transparency...... using inclusion criteria set out in an a priori protocol. To reduce the risk of bias, we then critically appraised the combined evidence found on each biomanipulation. Data were extracted on outcomes such as Secchi depth and chlorophyll a concentration before, during and/or after manipulation...

  11. Reef Fishes at All Trophic Levels Respond Positively to Effective Marine Protected Areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soler, German A.; Edgar, Graham J.; Thomson, Russell J.; Kininmonth, Stuart; Campbell, Stuart J.; Dawson, Terence P.; Barrett, Neville S.; Bernard, Anthony T. F.; Galván, David E.; Willis, Trevor J.; Alexander, Timothy J.; Stuart-Smith, Rick D.

    2015-01-01

    Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) offer a unique opportunity to test the assumption that fishing pressure affects some trophic groups more than others. Removal of larger predators through fishing is often suggested to have positive flow-on effects for some lower trophic groups, in which case protection from fishing should result in suppression of lower trophic groups as predator populations recover. We tested this by assessing differences in the trophic structure of reef fish communities associated with 79 MPAs and open-access sites worldwide, using a standardised quantitative dataset on reef fish community structure. The biomass of all major trophic groups (higher carnivores, benthic carnivores, planktivores and herbivores) was significantly greater (by 40% - 200%) in effective no-take MPAs relative to fished open-access areas. This effect was most pronounced for individuals in large size classes, but with no size class of any trophic group showing signs of depressed biomass in MPAs, as predicted from higher predator abundance. Thus, greater biomass in effective MPAs implies that exploitation on shallow rocky and coral reefs negatively affects biomass of all fish trophic groups and size classes. These direct effects of fishing on trophic structure appear stronger than any top down effects on lower trophic levels that would be imposed by intact predator populations. We propose that exploitation affects fish assemblages at all trophic levels, and that local ecosystem function is generally modified by fishing. PMID:26461104

  12. Reef Fishes at All Trophic Levels Respond Positively to Effective Marine Protected Areas.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    German A Soler

    Full Text Available Marine Protected Areas (MPAs offer a unique opportunity to test the assumption that fishing pressure affects some trophic groups more than others. Removal of larger predators through fishing is often suggested to have positive flow-on effects for some lower trophic groups, in which case protection from fishing should result in suppression of lower trophic groups as predator populations recover. We tested this by assessing differences in the trophic structure of reef fish communities associated with 79 MPAs and open-access sites worldwide, using a standardised quantitative dataset on reef fish community structure. The biomass of all major trophic groups (higher carnivores, benthic carnivores, planktivores and herbivores was significantly greater (by 40% - 200% in effective no-take MPAs relative to fished open-access areas. This effect was most pronounced for individuals in large size classes, but with no size class of any trophic group showing signs of depressed biomass in MPAs, as predicted from higher predator abundance. Thus, greater biomass in effective MPAs implies that exploitation on shallow rocky and coral reefs negatively affects biomass of all fish trophic groups and size classes. These direct effects of fishing on trophic structure appear stronger than any top down effects on lower trophic levels that would be imposed by intact predator populations. We propose that exploitation affects fish assemblages at all trophic levels, and that local ecosystem function is generally modified by fishing.

  13. Fish kairomones induce spine elongation and reduce predation in marine crab larvae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charpentier, Corie L; Wright, Alexander J; Cohen, Jonathan H

    2017-08-01

    Specialized defense strategies are induced in zooplankton upon detection of predator chemical cues or kairomones. These defenses are well-described for freshwater zooplankters, with morphological defenses being particularly striking, but few studies have reported kairomone-induced morphological defenses in marine zooplankton. Here, we compare morphological responses to kairomones in the larvae of two marine crab species, estuarine mud crabs (Rhithropanopeus harrisii) and Asian shore crabs (Hemigrapsus sanguineus). When reared in the presence of fish kairomones, spine length increased by 2-3% in larval R. harrisii, while no morphological changes were identified in H. sanguineus. In subsequent feeding assays with a co-occurring fish predator (Atlantic silversides, Menidia menidia), consumption of R. harrisii was lower on larvae that had been reared with kairomones. In addition, we found that broods with smaller larvae are more likely to exhibit increases in spine length after kairomone exposure. Hence, the observed morphological response is likely influenced by larval size. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  14. Assessing diet compositions of Lake Ontario predators using fatty acid profiles of prey fishes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Happell, Austin; Pattridge, Robert; Rinchard, Jacques; Walsh, Maureen

    2017-01-01

    Fatty acid profiles are used in food web studies to assess trophic interactions between predator and prey. The present study provides the first comprehensive fatty acid dataset for important prey and predator species in Lake Ontario. Three major prey fish (alewife, rainbow smelt, and round goby) were collected at three sites along the southern shore of Lake Ontario during the spring and fall of 2013, and predator species were collected in similar locations during the summer of 2013. Fatty acid compositions were compared among all prey species, all predator species, and information from both predator and prey was used to infer foraging differences among predators. Seasonal differences in fatty acids were found within each prey species studied. Differences among prey species were greater than any spatio-temporal differences detected within species. Fatty acids of predators revealed species-specific differences that matched known foraging habits. Chinook and Coho salmon, which are known to select alewife as their dominant prey item, had relatively little variation in fatty acid profiles. Conversely, brown trout, lake trout, yellow perch and esocids had highly variable fatty acid profiles and likely highly variable diet compositions. In general, our data suggested three dominant foraging patterns: 1) diet composed of nearly exclusively alewife for Chinook and Coho Salmon; 2) a mixed diet of alewife and round goby for brown and lake trout, and both rock and smallmouth bass; 3) a diet that is likely comprised of forage fishes other than those included in our study for northern pike and chain pickerel.

  15. Predation Risk within Fishing Gear and Implications for South Australian Rock Lobster Fisheries

    Science.gov (United States)

    Briceño, Felipe; Linnane, Adrian Joseph; Quiroz, Juan Carlos; Gardner, Caleb; Pecl, Gretta Tatyana

    2015-01-01

    Depredation of southern rock lobster (Jasus edwardsii) within fishing gear by the Maori octopus (Pinnoctopus cordiformis) has economic and ecological impacts on valuable fisheries in South Australia. In addition, depredation rates can be highly variable resulting in uncertainties for the fishery. We examined how in-pot lobster predation was influenced by factors such as lobster size and sex, season, fishing zone, and catch rate. Using mixed modelling techniques, we found that in-pot predation risk increased with lobster size and was higher for male lobsters. In addition, the effect of catch rate of lobsters on predation risk by octopus differed among fishing zones. There was both a seasonal and a spatial component to octopus predation, with an increased risk within discrete fishing grounds in South Australia at certain times of the year. Information about predation within lobster gear can assist fishery management decision-making, potentially leading to significant reduction in economic losses to the fishery. PMID:26489035

  16. Predation Risk within Fishing Gear and Implications for South Australian Rock Lobster Fisheries.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felipe Briceño

    Full Text Available Depredation of southern rock lobster (Jasus edwardsii within fishing gear by the Maori octopus (Pinnoctopus cordiformis has economic and ecological impacts on valuable fisheries in South Australia. In addition, depredation rates can be highly variable resulting in uncertainties for the fishery. We examined how in-pot lobster predation was influenced by factors such as lobster size and sex, season, fishing zone, and catch rate. Using mixed modelling techniques, we found that in-pot predation risk increased with lobster size and was higher for male lobsters. In addition, the effect of catch rate of lobsters on predation risk by octopus differed among fishing zones. There was both a seasonal and a spatial component to octopus predation, with an increased risk within discrete fishing grounds in South Australia at certain times of the year. Information about predation within lobster gear can assist fishery management decision-making, potentially leading to significant reduction in economic losses to the fishery.

  17. Juvenile exposure to predator cues induces a larger egg size in fish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Segers, Francisca H. I. D.; Taborsky, Barbara

    2012-01-01

    When females anticipate a hazardous environment for their offspring, they can increase offspring survival by producing larger young. Early environmental experience determines egg size in different animal taxa. We predicted that a higher perceived predation risk by juveniles would cause an increase in the sizes of eggs that they produce as adults. To test this, we exposed juveniles of the mouthbrooding cichlid Eretmodus cyanostictus in a split-brood experiment either to cues of a natural predator or to a control situation. After maturation, females that had been confronted with predators produced heavier eggs, whereas clutch size itself was not affected by the treatment. This effect cannot be explained by a differential female body size because the predator treatment did not influence growth trajectories. The observed increase of egg mass is likely to be adaptive, as heavier eggs gave rise to larger young and in fish, juvenile predation risk drops sharply with increasing body size. This study provides the first evidence that predator cues perceived by females early in life positively affect egg mass, suggesting that these cues allow her to predict the predation risk for her offspring. PMID:21976689

  18. First record of predation by the alien invasive freshwater fish ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    First record of predation by the alien invasive freshwater fish Micropterus salmoides L. (Centrarchidae) on migrating estuarine fishes in South Africa. ... Estuarine fish species, Monodactylus falciformis, and two species of the family Mugilidae, Mugil cephalus and Myxus capensis, were the most common fish prey in both size ...

  19. Mercury effects on predator avoidance behavior of a forage fish, golden shiner (Notemigonus crysoleucas)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webber, H.M.; Haines, T.A.

    2003-01-01

    Mercury contamination of fish is widespread in North America and has resulted in the establishment of fish consumption advisories to protect human health, However, the effects of mercury exposure to fish have seldom been investigated. We examined the effects of dietary mercury exposure at environmental levels in a common forage species, golden shiner (Notemigonus crysoleucas). Fish were fed either an unaltered diet (12 ng/g wet wt methylmercury [MeHg] as Hg), a low-Hg diet (455 ng/g Hg), or a high-Hg diet (959 ng/g Hg). After 90 d mean fish whole-body total Hg concentrations were 41, 230, and 518 ng/g wet wt, respectively, which were within the range of concentrations found in this species in northern U.S. lakes. There were no mortalities or differences in growth rate among groups. Groups of fish from each treatment were exposed to a model avian predator and their behavioral response videotaped for analysis. Brain acetylcholinesterase (AChE) activity was determined in fish after behavioral testing. Fish fed the high-Hg diet had significantly greater shoal vertical dispersal following predator exposure, took longer to return to pre-exposure activity level, and had greater shoal area after return to pre-exposure activity than did the other treatments, all of which would increase vulnerability of the fish to predation. There were no differences in brain AChE among treatments. We conclude that mercury exposure at levels currently occurring in northern United States lakes alters fish predator-avoidance behavior in a manner that may increase vulnerability to predation. This finding has significant implications for food chain transfer of Hg and Hg exposure of fish predators.

  20. Anxiety-like behaviour increases safety from fish predation in an amphipod crustacea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perrot-Minnot, Marie-Jeanne; Banchetry, Loan; Cézilly, Frank

    2017-12-01

    Anxiety is an emotional state generally expressed as sustained apprehension of the environment and elevated vigilance. It has been widely reported in vertebrates and, more recently, in a few invertebrate species. However, its fitness value remains elusive. We investigated anxiety-like behaviour and its consequences in an amphipod crustacean, using electric shock as aversive stimuli, and pharmacological assays. An anxiety-like state induced by electric shocks in Gammarus fossarum was expressed through increased sheltering behaviour in the absence of predation risk, thereby showing the pervasive nature of such behavioural response. Increasing the number of electric shocks both increased refuge use and delayed behavioural recovery. The behavioural effect of electric shock was mitigated by pre-treatment with LY354740, a metabotropic glutamate receptor group II/III agonist. Importantly, we found that this modulation of decision-making under an anxiety-like state resulted in an increased survival to predation in microcosm experiments. This study confirms the interest in taking an evolutionary view to the study of anxiety and calls for further investigation on the costs counterbalancing the survival benefit of an elevated anxiety level evidenced here.

  1. Fish but Not Macroinvertebrates Promote Trophic Cascading Effects in High Density Submersed Plant Experimental Lake Food Webs in Two Contrasting Climate Regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Iglesias

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Predators play a key role in the functioning of shallow lakes. Differences between the response of temperate and subtropical systems to fish predation have been proposed, but experimental evidence is scarce. To elucidate cascading effects produced by predators in contrasting climatic zones, we conducted a mesocosm experiment in three pairs of lakes in Uruguay and Denmark. We used two typical planktivorous-omnivorous fish species (Jenynsia multidentata + Cnesterodon decemmaculatus and Gasterosteus aculeatus + Perca fluviatilis and one littoral omnivorous-predatory macroinvertebrate (Palaemonetes argentinus and Gammarus lacustris, alone and combined, in numbers resembling natural densities. Fish predation on zooplankton increased phytoplankton biomass in both climate zones, whereas the effects of predatory macroinvertebrates on zooplankton and phytoplankton were not significant in either climate zone. Macroinvertebrates (that freely colonized the sampling devices were diminished by fish in both climate areas; however, periphyton biomass did not vary among treatments. Our experiments demonstrated that fish affected the structure of both planktonic and littoral herbivorous communities in both climate regions, with a visible positive cascading effect on phytoplankton biomass, but no effects on periphyton. Altogether, fish impacts appeared to be a strong driver of turbid water conditions in shallow lakes regardless of climatic zone by indirectly contributing to increasing phytoplankton biomass.

  2. Reduced density of the herbivorous urchin Diadema antillarum inside a Caribbean marine reserve linked to increased predation pressure by fishes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harborne, A. R.; Renaud, P. G.; Tyler, E. H. M.; Mumby, P. J.

    2009-09-01

    Disease has dramatically reduced populations of the herbivorous urchin Diadema antillarum Philippi on Caribbean reefs, contributing to an increased abundance of macroalgae and reduction of coral cover. Therefore, recovery of D. antillarum populations is critically important, but densities are still low on many reefs. Among the many potential factors limiting these densities, the focus of this study is on predation pressure by fishes. Marine reserves provide opportunities to examine large-scale manipulations of predator-prey interactions and, therefore, D. antillarum densities were compared inside and outside a reserve in The Bahamas (Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park; ECLSP). Urchins and their fish predators were surveyed at nine sites inside and outside the ECLSP. Because of lower fishing effort, the total biomass of urchin predators, weighted by their dietary preferences for urchins, was significantly higher inside the ECLSP. Furthermore, fish community structure was significantly different inside the Park because of the increased biomass of the majority of species. No urchins were seen inside the ECLSP and this was significantly lower than the density of 0.04 urchin m-2 outside the Park. Regression analysis indicated that the relationship between the biomass of urchin predators and the proportion of transects containing urchins was non-linear, suggesting that small increases in fish biomass dramatically reduce urchin abundances. The link between lower density of urchins and higher density of their predators inside the ECLSP is strengthened by discounting five alternative primary mechanisms (variations in macroalgal cover, larval supply, environmental setting, density of other urchin species and abundance of predators not surveyed). Caribbean marine reserves have an important conservation role, but increased fish predation appears to reduce densities of D. antillarum. Urchins currently have limited functional significance on Bahamian reefs, but any future recovery of

  3. Planktivory in the changing Lake Huron zooplankton community: Bythotrephes consumption exceeds that of Mysis and fish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bunnell, D.B.; Hunter, R. Douglas; Warner, D.M.; Chriscinske, M.A.; Roseman, E.F.

    2011-01-01

    Oligotrophic lakes are generally dominated by calanoid copepods because of their competitive advantage over cladocerans at low prey densities. Planktivory also can alter zooplankton community structure. We sought to understand the role of planktivory in driving recent changes to the zooplankton community of Lake Huron, a large oligotrophic lake on the border of Canada and the United States. We tested the hypothesis that excessive predation by fish (rainbow smelt Osmerus mordax, bloater Coregonus hoyi) and invertebrates (Mysis relicta, Bythotrephes longimanus) had driven observed declines in cladoceran and cyclopoid copepod biomass between 2002 and 2007. We used a field sampling and bioenergetics modelling approach to generate estimates of daily consumption by planktivores at two 91-m depth sites in northern Lake Huron, U.S.A., for each month, May-October 2007. Daily consumption was compared to daily zooplankton production. Bythotrephes was the dominant planktivore and estimated to have eaten 78% of all zooplankton consumed. Bythotrephes consumption exceeded total zooplankton production between July and October. Mysis consumed 19% of all the zooplankton consumed and exceeded zooplankton production in October. Consumption by fish was relatively unimportant - eating only 3% of all zooplankton consumed. Because Bythotrephes was so important, we explored other consumption estimation methods that predict lower Bythotrephes consumption. Under this scenario, Mysis was the most important planktivore, and Bythotrephes consumption exceeded zooplankton production only in August. Our results provide no support for the hypothesis that excessive fish consumption directly contributed to the decline of cladocerans and cyclopoid copepods in Lake Huron. Rather, they highlight the importance of invertebrate planktivores in structuring zooplankton communities, especially for those foods webs that have both Bythotrephes and Mysis. Together, these species occupy the epi-, meta- and

  4. Relative and combined effects of habitat and fishing on reef fish communities across a limited fishing gradient at Ningaloo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Shaun K; Babcock, Russ C; Fisher, Rebecca; Holmes, Thomas H; Moore, James A Y; Thomson, Damian P

    2012-10-01

    Habitat degradation and fishing are major drivers of temporal and spatial changes in fish communities. The independent effects of these drivers are well documented, but the relative importance and interaction between fishing and habitat shifts is poorly understood, particularly in complex systems such as coral reefs. To assess the combined and relative effects of fishing and habitat we examined the composition of fish communities on patch reefs across a gradient of high to low structural complexity in fished and unfished areas of the Ningaloo Marine Park, Western Australia. Biomass and species richness of fish were positively correlated with structural complexity of reefs and negatively related to macroalgal cover. Total abundance of fish was also positively related to structural complexity, however this relationship was stronger on fished reefs than those where fishing is prohibited. The interaction between habitat condition and fishing pressure is primarily due to the high abundance of small bodied planktivorous fish on fished reefs. However, the influence of management zones on the abundance and biomass of predators and target species is small, implying spatial differences in fishing pressure are low and unlikely to be driving this interaction. Our results emphasise the importance of habitat in structuring reef fish communities on coral reefs especially when gradients in fishing pressure are low. The influence of fishing effort on this relationship may however become more important as fishing pressure increases. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Conventional and technical diving surveys reveal elevated biomass and differing fish community composition from shallow and upper mesophotic zones of a remote United States coral reef.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz, Roldan C; Buckel, Christine A; Whitfield, Paula E; Viehman, Shay; Clark, Randy; Taylor, J Christopher; Degan, Brian P; Hickerson, Emma L

    2017-01-01

    The world's coral reefs appear to be in a global decline, yet most previous research on coral reefs has taken place at depths shallower than 30 m. Mesophotic coral ecosystem (depths deeper than ~30 m) studies have revealed extensive, productive habitats and rich communities. Despite recent advances, mesophotic coral ecosystems remain understudied due to challenges with sampling at deeper depths. The few previous studies of mesophotic coral ecosystems have shown variation across locations in depth-specific species composition and assemblage shifts, potentially a response to differences in habitat or light availability/water clarity. This study utilized scuba to examine fish and benthic communities from shallow and upper mesophotic (to 45 m) zones of Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary (FGBNMS, 28°0'N; 93°50'W) from 2010-2012. Dominant planktivores were ubiquitous in shallow and upper mesophotic habitats, and comparisons with previous shallow research suggest this community distribution has persisted for over 30 years. Planktivores were abundant in shallow low-relief habitats on the periphery of the coral reef, and some of these sites that contained habitat transitioning from high to low relief supported high biomass of benthic predators. These peripheral sites at FGBNMS may be important for the trophic transfer of oceanic energy to the benthic coral reef. Distinct differences between upper mesophotic and shallow communities were also observed. These included greater overall fish (as well as apex predator) biomass in the upper mesophotic, differences in apex predator community composition between depth zones, and greater percent cover of algae, rubble, sand, and sponges in the upper mesophotic. Greater fish biomass in the upper mesophotic and similar fish community composition between depth zones provide preliminary support that upper mesophotic habitats at FGBNMS have the capacity to serve as refugia for the shallow-water reefs. Diving surveys of the

  6. Conventional and technical diving surveys reveal elevated biomass and differing fish community composition from shallow and upper mesophotic zones of a remote United States coral reef.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roldan C Muñoz

    Full Text Available The world's coral reefs appear to be in a global decline, yet most previous research on coral reefs has taken place at depths shallower than 30 m. Mesophotic coral ecosystem (depths deeper than ~30 m studies have revealed extensive, productive habitats and rich communities. Despite recent advances, mesophotic coral ecosystems remain understudied due to challenges with sampling at deeper depths. The few previous studies of mesophotic coral ecosystems have shown variation across locations in depth-specific species composition and assemblage shifts, potentially a response to differences in habitat or light availability/water clarity. This study utilized scuba to examine fish and benthic communities from shallow and upper mesophotic (to 45 m zones of Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary (FGBNMS, 28°0'N; 93°50'W from 2010-2012. Dominant planktivores were ubiquitous in shallow and upper mesophotic habitats, and comparisons with previous shallow research suggest this community distribution has persisted for over 30 years. Planktivores were abundant in shallow low-relief habitats on the periphery of the coral reef, and some of these sites that contained habitat transitioning from high to low relief supported high biomass of benthic predators. These peripheral sites at FGBNMS may be important for the trophic transfer of oceanic energy to the benthic coral reef. Distinct differences between upper mesophotic and shallow communities were also observed. These included greater overall fish (as well as apex predator biomass in the upper mesophotic, differences in apex predator community composition between depth zones, and greater percent cover of algae, rubble, sand, and sponges in the upper mesophotic. Greater fish biomass in the upper mesophotic and similar fish community composition between depth zones provide preliminary support that upper mesophotic habitats at FGBNMS have the capacity to serve as refugia for the shallow-water reefs. Diving

  7. Context-dependent planktivory: interacting effects of turbidity and predation risk on adaptive foraging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pangle, Kevin L.; Malinich, Timothy D.; Bunnell, David B.; DeVries, Dennis R.; Ludsin, Stuart A.

    2012-01-01

    By shaping species interactions, adaptive phenotypic plasticity can profoundly influence ecosystems. Predicting such outcomes has proven difficult, however, owing in part to the dependence of plasticity on the environmental context. Of particular relevance are environmental factors that affect sensory performance in organisms in ways that alter the tradeoffs associated with adaptive phenotypic responses. We explored the influence of turbidity, which simultaneously and differentially affects the sensory performance of consumers at multiple trophic levels, on the indirect effect of a top predator (piscivorous fish) on a basal prey resource (zooplankton) that is mediated through changes in the plastic foraging behavior of an intermediate consumer (zooplanktivorous fish). We first generated theoretical predictions of the adaptive foraging response of a zooplanktivore across wide gradients of turbidity and predation risk by a piscivore. Our model predicted that predation risk can change the negative relationship between intermediate consumer foraging and turbidity into a humped-shaped (unimodal) one in which foraging is low in both clear and highly turbid conditions due to foraging-related risk and visual constraints, respectively. Consequently, the positive trait-mediated indirect effect (TMIE) of the top predator on the basal resource is predicted to peak at low turbidity and decline thereafter until it reaches an asymptote of zero at intermediate turbidity levels (when foraging equals that which is predicted when the top predator is absent). We used field observations and a laboratory experiment to test our model predictions. In support, we found humped-shaped relationships between planktivory and turbidity for several zooplanktivorous fishes from diverse freshwater ecosystems with predation risk. Further, our experiment demonstrated that predation risk reduced zooplanktivory by yellow perch (Perca flavescens) at a low turbidity, but had no effect on consumption at

  8. Intraguild predation between small pelagic fish in the Bay of Biscay: impact on anchovy (Engraulis encrasicolus L.) egg mortality

    KAUST Repository

    Bachiller, Eneko

    2015-05-12

    Small pelagic fish can play an important role in various ecosystems linking lower and upper trophic levels. Among the factor behind the observed inter-annual variations in small pelagic fish abundance, intra- and inter-specific trophic interactions could have a strong impact on the recruitment variability (e.g. anchovy). Egg cannibalism observed in anchovies has been postulated to be a mechanism that determines the upper limit of the population density and self-regulates the population abundance of the species. On the other hand, predation by other guild species is commonly considered as a regulation mechanism between competing species. This study provides empirical evidence of anchovy cannibalism and predation of the main small pelagic fish species on anchovy eggs and estimates the effect of intraguild predation on the anchovy egg mortality rate. Results show that, depending on the year (2008–2009), up to 33 % of the total anchovy egg mortality was the result of sardine predation and up to 4 % was the result of egg cannibalism together with predation by Atlantic and Atlantic Chub mackerel and sprat. Results also indicate that in the Bay of Biscay, fluctuations in the survival index of the early life stages of anchovy are likely to be attributable at least in part to egg cannibalism and especially to a high sardine predation on anchovy eggs. © 2015 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg

  9. Forage fish, their fisheries, and their predators: who drives whom?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Engelhard, Georg H.; Peck, Myron A.; Rindorf, Anna

    2014-01-01

    exist, as in the North Sea. Sandeel appears to be the most important prey forage fish. Seabirds are most dependent on forage fish, due to specialized diet and distributional constraints (breeding colonies). Other than fisheries, key predators of forage fish are a few piscivorous fish species including...... saithe, whiting, mackerel, and horse-mackerel, exploited in turn by fisheries; seabirds and seals have a more modest impact. Size-based foodwebmodelling suggests that reducing fishing mortality may not necessarily lead to larger stocks of piscivorous fish, especially if their early life stages compete...

  10. Effects of copepod size on fish growth: A model based on data for North Sea sandeel

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Deurs, Mikael van; Jørgensen, C.; Fiksen, Ø.

    2015-01-01

    In productive marine off-shore ecosystems, the flow of energy from zooplankton to large predators is channeled through a few species of short-lived, highly abundant schooling planktivorous fish. There are indications that these species respond to qualitative and phenological changes...... in the zooplankton. If so, the climate-induced alterations of the local copepod communities that we see in temperate and arctic regions may influence the energy flux in marine food chains. In order to investigate how different processes contribute to the relationship between copepod size and fish growth, we merged 2...... was the most important factor, followed by handling time limitation and prey energy content. These limitations became stronger with increasing fish length, showing that copepod size and energy content have a strong effect on the specific growth potential of these fish...

  11. Tropical fish community does not recover 45 years after predator introduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharpe, D M T; De León, L F; González, R; Torchin, M E

    2017-02-01

    Predation is considered to be an important factor structuring natural communities. However, it is often difficult to determine how it may influence long-term, broad-scale, diversity patterns, particularly in diverse tropical systems. Biological introductions can provide powerful insight to test the sustained consequences of predation in natural communities, if pre-introduction data are available. Half a century ago, Zaret and Paine demonstrated strong and immediate community-level effects following the introduction of a novel apex predator (peacock bass, Cichla monoculus) into Lake Gatun, Panama. To test for long-term changes associated with this predator introduction, we followed up on their classic study by replicating historical sampling methods and examining changes in the littoral fish community at two sites in Lake Gatun 45 years post-introduction. To broaden our inference, we complemented this temporal comparison with a spatial analysis, wherein we compared the fish communities from two lakes with and one lake without peacock bass. Comparisons with historical data revealed that the peacock bass remains the most abundant predator in Lake Gatun. Furthermore, the collapse of the littoral prey community observed immediately following the invasion has been sustained over the past 45 years. The mean abundance of native littoral fish is now 96% lower than it was prior to the introduction. Diversity (rarefied species richness) declined by 64% post-introduction, and some native species appear to have been locally extirpated. We observed a similar pattern across invaded and uninvaded lakes: the mean abundance of native fishes was 5-40 times lower in lakes with (Gatun, Alajuela) relative to the lake without peacock bass (Bayano). In particular, small-bodied native fishes (Characidae, Peociliidae), which are common prey of the peacock bass, were more than two orders of magnitude (307 times) less abundant in Gatun and one order of magnitude (28 times) less abundant in

  12. Small-scale turbulence, marine snow formation, and planktivorous feeding

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kiørboe, Thomas

    1997-01-01

    predators encounter prey in turbulent environments, and the equations are modified to take predator and prey behaviour into account. Simple equations that describe prey encounter rates for cruising predators, suspension feeders, ambush feeders, and pause-travel predators in calm and turbulent water...... are derived. The influence of fluid motion on post-encounter prey capture (pursuit success) is examined. Experimental results on various copepod and larval fish predators will be used to illustrate the theory. Finally, the significance of size and behaviour is discussed. It is shown that turbulence...... is potentially very important for prey encounter in mm-cm sized planktonic predators, while it is unimportant for most larger and smaller ones....

  13. Novel mobbing strategies of a fish population against a sessile annelid predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lachat, Jose; Haag-Wackernagel, Daniel

    2016-09-12

    When searching for food, foraging fishes expose themselves to hidden predators. The strategies that maximize the survival of foraging fishes are not well understood. Here, we describe a novel type of mobbing behaviour displayed by foraging Scolopsis affinis. The fish direct sharp water jets towards the hidden sessile annelid predator Eunice aphroditois (Bobbit worm). We recognized two different behavioural roles for mobbers (i.e., initiator and subsequent participants). The first individual to exhibit behaviour indicating the discovery of the Bobbit directed, absolutely and per time unit, more water jets than the subsequent individuals that joined the mobbing. We found evidence that the mobbing impacted the behaviour of the Bobbit, e.g., by inducing retraction. S. affinis individuals either mob alone or form mobbing groups. We speculate that this behaviour may provide social benefits for its conspecifics by securing foraging territories for S. affinis. Our results reveal a sophisticated and complex behavioural strategy to protect against a hidden predator.

  14. Assessing the potential for fish predation to impact zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha): Insight from bioenergetics models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eggleton, M.A.; Miranda, L.E.; Kirk, J.P.

    2004-01-01

    Rates of annual food consumption and biomass were modeled for several fish species across representative rivers and lakes in eastern North America. Results were combined to assess the relative potential of fish predation to impact zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha). Predicted annual food consumption by fishes in southern waters was over 100% greater than that in northern systems because of warmer annual water temperatures and presumed increases in metabolic demand. Although generally increasing with latitude, biomasses of several key zebra mussel fish predators did not change significantly across latitudes. Biomasses of some less abundant fish predators did increase significantly with latitude, but increases were not of the magnitude to offset predicted decreases in food consumption. Our results generally support the premise that fishes in rivers and lakes of the southern United States (U.S.) have inherently greater potential to impact zebra mussels by predation. Our simulations may provide a partial explanation of why zebra mussel invasions have not been as rapid and widespread in southern U.S. waters compared to the Great Lakes region. ?? Blackwell Munksgaard, 2004.

  15. Trait-based diet selection: prey behaviour and morphology predict vulnerability to predation in reef fish communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green, Stephanie J; Côté, Isabelle M

    2014-11-01

    Understanding how predators select their prey can provide important insights into community structure and dynamics. However, the suite of prey species available to a predator is often spatially and temporally variable. As a result, species-specific selectivity data are of limited use for predicting novel predator-prey interactions because they are assemblage specific. We present a method for predicting diet selection that is applicable across prey assemblages, based on identifying general morphological and behavioural traits of prey that confer vulnerability to predation independent of species identity. We apply this trait-based approach to examining prey selection by Indo-Pacific lionfish (Pterois volitans and Pterois miles), invasive predators that prey upon species-rich reef fish communities and are rapidly spreading across the western Atlantic. We first generate hypotheses about morphological and behavioural traits recurring across fish species that could facilitate or deter predation by lionfish. Constructing generalized linear mixed-effects models that account for relatedness among prey taxa, we test whether these traits predict patterns of diet selection by lionfish within two independent data sets collected at different spatial scales: (i) in situ visual observations of prey consumption and availability for individual lionfish and (ii) comparisons of prey abundance in lionfish stomach contents to availability on invaded reefs at large. Both analyses reveal that a number of traits predicted to affect vulnerability to predation, including body size, body shape, position in the water column and aggregation behaviour, are important determinants of diet selection by lionfish. Small, shallow-bodied, solitary fishes found resting on or just above reefs are the most vulnerable. Fishes that exhibit parasite cleaning behaviour experience a significantly lower risk of predation than non-cleaning fishes, and fishes that are nocturnally active are at significantly

  16. School is out on noisy reefs: the effect of boat noise on predator learning and survival of juvenile coral reef fishes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrari, Maud C O; McCormick, Mark I; Meekan, Mark G; Simpson, Stephen D; Nedelec, Sophie L; Chivers, Douglas P

    2018-01-31

    Noise produced by anthropogenic activities is increasing in many marine ecosystems. We investigated the effect of playback of boat noise on fish cognition. We focused on noise from small motorboats, since its occurrence can dominate soundscapes in coastal communities, the number of noise-producing vessels is increasing rapidly and their proximity to marine life has the potential to cause deleterious effects. Cognition-or the ability of individuals to learn and remember information-is crucial, given that most species rely on learning to achieve fitness-promoting tasks, such as finding food, choosing mates and recognizing predators. The caveat with cognition is its latent effect: the individual that fails to learn an important piece of information will live normally until the moment where it needs the information to make a fitness-related decision. Such latent effects can easily be overlooked by traditional risk assessment methods. Here, we conducted three experiments to assess the effect of boat noise playbacks on the ability of fish to learn to recognize predation threats, using a common, conserved learning paradigm. We found that fish that were trained to recognize a novel predator while being exposed to 'reef + boat noise' playbacks failed to subsequently respond to the predator, while their 'reef noise' counterparts responded appropriately. We repeated the training, giving the fish three opportunities to learn three common reef predators, and released the fish in the wild. Those trained in the presence of 'reef + boat noise' playbacks survived 40% less than the 'reef noise' controls over our 72 h monitoring period, a performance equal to that of predator-naive fish. Our last experiment indicated that these results were likely due to failed learning, as opposed to stress effects from the sound exposure. Neither playbacks nor real boat noise affected survival in the absence of predator training. Our results indicate that boat noise has the potential to cause

  17. The almost invisible league: crypsis and association between minute fishes and shrimps as a possible defence against visually hunting predators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucélia Nobre Carvalho

    Full Text Available Camouflage is one of the most widespread defence modes used by substrate-dwelling animals, whereas transparency is generally found in open-water organisms. Both these defence types are regarded as effective against visually guided predators. We present here three assemblages of similarly-sized freshwater fish and shrimp species which apparently rely on camouflage and transparency to evade some of their potential predators. In one of the associations, there is a transition from cryptic colours and translucency to transparency of the component species according to the position each of them occupies in the habitat. The likeness between the fishes and the shrimps is here regarded as a type of protective association similar to numerical or social mimicry. Additionally, we suggest that the assemblage may contain Batesian-like mimicry components.

  18. Separate and combined effects of habitat-specific fish predation on the survival of invasive and native gammarids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kotta, Jonne; Orav-Kotta, Helen; Herkül, Kristjan

    2010-10-01

    The North-American amphipod Gammarus tigrinus was observed for the first time in the northern Baltic Sea in 2003. The invasive amphipod has been particularly successful in some habitats (e.g. on pebbles) where it has become one of the most abundant gammarid species. We studied experimentally if the dominant fish Gasterosteus aculeatus preyed differentially on the exotic G. tigrinus and the native Gammarus salinus, if predation differed among habitats, and if one gammarid species facilitated predation on the other. The experiment demonstrated that (1) fish preyed more on the exotic G. tigrinus than the native G. salinus. (2) Predation did not differ among habitats. (3) Gammarus tigrinus facilitated the predation on G. salinus and this facilitation varied among habitats with significant effects on pebbles. Thus, the combined effect of habitat-specific fish predation and competition between gammarid amphipods is a possible explanation of the current range of G. tigrinus in the northern Baltic Sea. G. tigrinus seems to establish in habitats where it can significantly increase fish predation on the native gammarids.

  19. Fish egg predation by Baltic sprat and herring: do species characteristics and development stage matter?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Neumann, Viola; Köster, Fritz; Eero, Margit

    2017-01-01

    Predation of eggs by clupeids has been identified as a major factor contributing to early life stage mortality of Baltic cod. We used data from ichthyoplankton sampling and clupeid stomach analyses to investigate whether eggs of other fish species are to a similar extent subject to predation...... generally negatively selected by both predators, while fish eggs were non-selectively consumed in summer. Predation is suggested to account for a large fraction of mortality of cod eggs at older stages, i.e. those eggs, which have survived the often detrimentally low oxygen concentration in and below...... the permanent halocline. The consumption rates of sprat eggs at all development stages relative to production rates were considerably lower compared to cod, suggesting that egg predation is of lesser importance for sprat recruitment....

  20. Reduction in predator defense in the presence of neighbors in a colonial fish.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Franziska C Schädelin

    Full Text Available Predation pressure has long been considered a leading explanation of colonies, where close neighbors may reduce predation via dilution, alarming or group predator attacks. Attacking predators may be costly in terms of energy and survival, leading to the question of how neighbors contribute to predator deterrence in relationship to each other. Two hypotheses explaining the relative efforts made by neighbors are byproduct-mutualism, which occurs when breeders inadvertently attack predators by defending their nests, and reciprocity, which occurs when breeders deliberately exchange predator defense efforts with neighbors. Most studies investigating group nest defense have been performed with birds. However, colonial fish may constitute a more practical model system for an experimental approach because of the greater ability of researchers to manipulate their environment. We investigated in the colonial fish, Neolamprologus caudopunctatus, whether prospecting pairs preferred to breed near conspecifics or solitarily, and how breeders invested in anti-predator defense in relation to neighbors. In a simple choice test, prospecting pairs selected breeding sites close to neighbors versus a solitary site. Predators were then sequentially presented to the newly established test pairs, the previously established stimulus pairs or in between the two pairs. Test pairs attacked the predator eight times more frequently when they were presented on their non-neighbor side compared to between the two breeding sites, where stimulus pairs maintained high attack rates. Thus, by joining an established pair, test pairs were able to reduce their anti-predator efforts near neighbors, at no apparent cost to the stimulus pairs. These findings are unlikely to be explained by reciprocity or byproduct-mutualism. Our results instead suggest a commensal relationship in which new pairs exploit the high anti-predator efforts of established pairs, which invest similarly with or

  1. Planktivorous auklet Ptychoramphus aleuticus responses to ocean climate, 2005: Unusual atmospheric blocking?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sydeman, William J.; Bradley, Russell W.; Warzybok, Pete; Abraham, Christine L.; Jahncke, Jaime; Hyrenbach, K. David; Kousky, Vernon; Hipfner, J. Mark; Ohman, Mark D.

    2006-10-01

    In spring-summer 2005, anomalous atmospheric-oceanographic coupling caused unprecedented reproductive failures and redistribution of a planktivorous marine bird in both central California (37°N) and southern British Columbia (50°N). At SE Farallon Island, CA, the birds abandoned the breeding colony en masse between 10-20 May, a unique behavioral response; for the first time in 35 years, reproductive success was zero. At Triangle Island, B.C., only 8% of the nesting pairs were successful, the worst year on record. Surveys of birds at sea revealed a peak in relative abundance south of Point Conception (34°N) in summer and fall, suggestive of emigration from the north. Prey (euphausiid crustacean) biomass in the Gulf of the Farallones was reduced, but remained high south of Point Conception. Change in predator and prey may be explained, in part, by unusual atmospheric blocking in the Gulf of Alaska in May, which caused the jet stream to shift southwards resulting in poor upwelling-favorable winds and anomalously warm SST. This study demonstrates the deleterious consequences of this climate event for a top marine predator in the central-northern California Current System.

  2. Ocean acidification and responses to predators: can sensory redundancy reduce the apparent impacts of elevated CO2 on fish?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lönnstedt, Oona M; Munday, Philip L; McCormick, Mark I; Ferrari, Maud C O; Chivers, Douglas P

    2013-09-01

    Carbon dioxide (CO2) levels in the atmosphere and surface ocean are rising at an unprecedented rate due to sustained and accelerating anthropogenic CO2 emissions. Previous studies have documented that exposure to elevated CO2 causes impaired antipredator behavior by coral reef fish in response to chemical cues associated with predation. However, whether ocean acidification will impair visual recognition of common predators is currently unknown. This study examined whether sensory compensation in the presence of multiple sensory cues could reduce the impacts of ocean acidification on antipredator responses. When exposed to seawater enriched with levels of CO2 predicted for the end of this century (880 μatm CO2), prey fish completely lost their response to conspecific alarm cues. While the visual response to a predator was also affected by high CO2, it was not entirely lost. Fish exposed to elevated CO2, spent less time in shelter than current-day controls and did not exhibit antipredator signaling behavior (bobbing) when multiple predator cues were present. They did, however, reduce feeding rate and activity levels to the same level as controls. The results suggest that the response of fish to visual cues may partially compensate for the lack of response to chemical cues. Fish subjected to elevated CO2 levels, and exposed to chemical and visual predation cues simultaneously, responded with the same intensity as controls exposed to visual cues alone. However, these responses were still less than control fish simultaneously exposed to chemical and visual predation cues. Consequently, visual cues improve antipredator behavior of CO2 exposed fish, but do not fully compensate for the loss of response to chemical cues. The reduced ability to correctly respond to a predator will have ramifications for survival in encounters with predators in the field, which could have repercussions for population replenishment in acidified oceans.

  3. Effects of water temperature and fish size on predation vulnerability of juvenile humpback chub to rainbow trout and brown trout

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward, David L.; Morton-Starner, Rylan

    2015-01-01

    Predation on juvenile native fish by introduced Rainbow Trout and Brown Trout is considered a significant threat to the persistence of endangered Humpback Chub Gila cypha in the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon. Diet studies of Rainbow Trout and Brown Trout in Glen and Grand canyons indicate that these species do eat native fish, but impacts are difficult to assess because predation vulnerability is highly variable, depending on prey size, predator size, and the water temperatures under which the predation interactions take place. We conducted laboratory experiments to evaluate how short-term predation vulnerability of juvenile native fish changes in response to fish size and water temperature using captivity-reared Humpback Chub, Bonytail, and Roundtail Chub. Juvenile chub 45–90 mm total length (TL) were exposed to adult Rainbow and Brown trouts at 10, 15, and 20°C to measure predation vulnerability as a function of water temperature and fish size. A 1°C increase in water temperature decreased short-term predation vulnerability of Humpback Chub to Rainbow Trout by about 5%, although the relationship is not linear. Brown Trout were highly piscivorous in the laboratory at any size > 220 mm TL and at all water temperatures we tested. Understanding the effects of predation by trout on endangered Humpback Chub is critical in evaluating management options aimed at preserving native fishes in Grand Canyon National Park.

  4. Consequences of the size structure of fish populations for their effects on a generalist avian predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kloskowski, Janusz

    2011-06-01

    Size-structured interspecific interactions can shift between predation and competition, depending on ontogenetic changes in size relationships. I examined the effects of common carp (Cyprinus carpio), an omnivorous fish, on the reproductive success of the red-necked grebe (Podiceps grisegena), an avian gape-limited predator, along a fish size gradient created by stocking distinct age-cohorts in seminatural ponds. Young-of-the-year (0+) carp were an essential food source for young grebes. Only adult birds were able to consume 1-year-old (1+) fish, while 2-year-old (2+) fish attained a size refuge from grebes. Amphibian larvae were the principal alternative prey to fish, followed by macroinvertebrates, but the abundance of both dramatically decreased along the carp size gradient. Fledging success was 2.8 times greater in ponds with 0+ versus 1+ carp; in ponds with 1+ carp, chicks received on average 2.6-3 times less prey biomass from their parents, and over 1/3 of broods suffered total failure. Breeding birds avoided settling on 2+ ponds. These results show that changes in prey fish size structure can account for shifts from positive trophic effects on the avian predator to a negative impact on the predator's alternative resources. However, competition did not fully explain the decrease in grebe food resources in the presence of large fish, as carp and grebes overlapped little in diet. In experimental cages, 1+ carp totally eliminated young larvae of amphibians palatable to fish. In field conditions, breeding adults of palatable taxa avoided ponds with 1+ and older carp. Non-trophic interactions such as habitat selection by amphibians or macroinvertebrates to avoid large fish may provide an indirect mechanism strengthening the adverse bottom-up effects of fish on birds.

  5. Grey seal predation on forage fish in the Baltic Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Eero, Aro; Neuenfeldt, Stefan; Aho, Teija

    The mean annual growth rate of grey seal stock in the Baltic has been on average 7.5% annually during the last decade. In 2010, a total of approximately 23 100 grey seals were counted. The increase in stock size was highest in the northern areas and the predation pressure of grey seals on clupeoids...... has increased accordingly. The diet of grey seal in the Baltic consists of ca. 20 fish species. The most abundant prey items in the Baltic proper are Baltic herring, sprat, and cod, and in the Bothnian Sea and Bothnian Bay Baltic herring, Coregonus sp., Baltic salmon, and sea trout. An adult seal...... consumes on average round 4.5 kg fish per day, of which 55% are clupeoids in the Baltic Main basin and 70% in the Bothnian Sea and Bothnian Bay. According to acoustic estimates, predator– prey distribution patterns, migration patterns, and multispecies analysis (SMS), the predation effect of grey seals...

  6. Spatial variation in coral reef fish and benthic communities in the central Saudi Arabian Red Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maha T. Khalil

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Local-scale ecological information is critical as a sound basis for spatial management and conservation and as support for ongoing research in relatively unstudied areas. We conducted visual surveys of fish and benthic communities on nine reefs (3–24 km from shore in the Thuwal area of the central Saudi Arabian Red Sea. Fish biomass increased with increasing distance from shore, but was generally low compared to reefs experiencing minimal human influence around the world. All reefs had a herbivore-dominated trophic structure and few top predators, such as sharks, jacks, or large groupers. Coral cover was considerably lower on inshore reefs, likely due to a 2010 bleaching event. Community analyses showed inshore reefs to be characterized by turf algae, slower-growing corals, lower herbivore diversity, and highly abundant turf-farming damselfishes. Offshore reefs had more planktivorous fishes, a more diverse herbivore assemblage, and faster-growing corals. All reefs appear to be impacted by overfishing, and inshore reefs seem more vulnerable to thermal bleaching. The study provides a description of the spatial variation in biomass and community structure in the central Saudi Arabian Red Sea and provides a basis for spatial prioritization and subsequent marine protected area design in Thuwal.

  7. Spatial variation in coral reef fish and benthic communities in the central Saudi Arabian Red Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khalil, Maha T; Bouwmeester, Jessica; Berumen, Michael L

    2017-01-01

    Local-scale ecological information is critical as a sound basis for spatial management and conservation and as support for ongoing research in relatively unstudied areas. We conducted visual surveys of fish and benthic communities on nine reefs (3-24 km from shore) in the Thuwal area of the central Saudi Arabian Red Sea. Fish biomass increased with increasing distance from shore, but was generally low compared to reefs experiencing minimal human influence around the world. All reefs had a herbivore-dominated trophic structure and few top predators, such as sharks, jacks, or large groupers. Coral cover was considerably lower on inshore reefs, likely due to a 2010 bleaching event. Community analyses showed inshore reefs to be characterized by turf algae, slower-growing corals, lower herbivore diversity, and highly abundant turf-farming damselfishes. Offshore reefs had more planktivorous fishes, a more diverse herbivore assemblage, and faster-growing corals . All reefs appear to be impacted by overfishing, and inshore reefs seem more vulnerable to thermal bleaching. The study provides a description of the spatial variation in biomass and community structure in the central Saudi Arabian Red Sea and provides a basis for spatial prioritization and subsequent marine protected area design in Thuwal.

  8. Spatial variation in coral reef fish and benthic communities in the central Saudi Arabian Red Sea

    KAUST Repository

    Khalil, Maha T.

    2017-06-06

    Local-scale ecological information is critical as a sound basis for spatial management and conservation and as support for ongoing research in relatively unstudied areas. We conducted visual surveys of fish and benthic communities on nine reefs (3–24 km from shore) in the Thuwal area of the central Saudi Arabian Red Sea. Fish biomass increased with increasing distance from shore, but was generally low compared to reefs experiencing minimal human influence around the world. All reefs had a herbivore-dominated trophic structure and few top predators, such as sharks, jacks, or large groupers. Coral cover was considerably lower on inshore reefs, likely due to a 2010 bleaching event. Community analyses showed inshore reefs to be characterized by turf algae, slower-growing corals, lower herbivore diversity, and highly abundant turf-farming damselfishes. Offshore reefs had more planktivorous fishes, a more diverse herbivore assemblage, and faster-growing corals. All reefs appear to be impacted by overfishing, and inshore reefs seem more vulnerable to thermal bleaching. The study provides a description of the spatial variation in biomass and community structure in the central Saudi Arabian Red Sea and provides a basis for spatial prioritization and subsequent marine protected area design in Thuwal.

  9. Spatial variation in coral reef fish and benthic communities in the central Saudi Arabian Red Sea

    KAUST Repository

    Khalil, Maha T.; Bouwmeester, Jessica; Berumen, Michael L.

    2017-01-01

    Local-scale ecological information is critical as a sound basis for spatial management and conservation and as support for ongoing research in relatively unstudied areas. We conducted visual surveys of fish and benthic communities on nine reefs (3–24 km from shore) in the Thuwal area of the central Saudi Arabian Red Sea. Fish biomass increased with increasing distance from shore, but was generally low compared to reefs experiencing minimal human influence around the world. All reefs had a herbivore-dominated trophic structure and few top predators, such as sharks, jacks, or large groupers. Coral cover was considerably lower on inshore reefs, likely due to a 2010 bleaching event. Community analyses showed inshore reefs to be characterized by turf algae, slower-growing corals, lower herbivore diversity, and highly abundant turf-farming damselfishes. Offshore reefs had more planktivorous fishes, a more diverse herbivore assemblage, and faster-growing corals. All reefs appear to be impacted by overfishing, and inshore reefs seem more vulnerable to thermal bleaching. The study provides a description of the spatial variation in biomass and community structure in the central Saudi Arabian Red Sea and provides a basis for spatial prioritization and subsequent marine protected area design in Thuwal.

  10. Information Dynamics in the Interaction between a Prey and a Predator Fish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Feng Hu

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Accessing information efficiently is vital for animals to make the optimal decisions, and it is particularly important when they are facing predators. Yet until now, very few quantitative conclusions have been drawn about the information dynamics in the interaction between animals due to the lack of appropriate theoretic measures. Here, we employ transfer entropy (TE, a new information-theoretic and model-free measure, to explore the information dynamics in the interaction between a predator and a prey fish. We conduct experiments in which a predator and a prey fish are confined in separate parts of an arena, but can communicate with each other visually and tactilely. TE is calculated on the pair’s coarse-grained state of the trajectories. We find that the prey’s TE is generally significantly bigger than the predator’s during trials, which indicates that the dominant information is transmitted from predator to prey. We then demonstrate that the direction of information flow is irrelevant to the parameters used in the coarse-grained procedures. We further calculate the prey’s TE at different distances between it and the predator. The resulted figure shows that there is a high plateau in the mid-range of the distance and that drops quickly at both the near and the far ends. This result reflects that there is a sensitive space zone where the prey is highly vigilant of the predator’s position.

  11. Selective predation for low body condition at the larval-juvenile transition of a coral reef fish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoey, Andrew S; McCormick, Mark I

    2004-03-01

    Mortality is known to be high during the transition from larval to juvenile life stages in organisms that have complex life histories. We are only just beginning to understand the processes that influence which individuals survive this period of high mortality, and which traits may be beneficial. Here we document a field experiment that examines the selectivity of predation immediately following settlement to the juvenile population in a common tropical fish, Pomacentrus amboinensis (Pomacentridae). Newly metamorphosed fish were tagged and randomly placed onto replicated patches of natural habitat cleared of resident fishes. After exposure to transient predators for 3 days, fish were recollected and the attributes of survivors from patch reefs that sustained high mortality were compared to individuals from patch reefs that experienced low mortality. Seven characteristics of individuals, which were indicative of previous and present body condition, were compared between groups. Predation was found to be selective for fish that grew slowly in the latter third of their larval phase, were low in total lipids, and had a high standardized weight (Fulton's K). Traits developed in the larval phase can strongly influence the survival of individuals over this critical transition period for organisms with complex life cycles.

  12. Spatial management of marine resources can enhance the recovery of predators and avoid local depletion of forage fish

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Eero, Margit; Vinther, Morten; Haslob, Holger

    2012-01-01

    fish, i.e., sprat and herring, is historic low in this area, which in combination with increasing cod stock results in locally high predation mortality of forage fish and cannibalism of cod. In line with low prey availability, body weight and nutritional condition of cod drastically declined...... management to enhance the recovery of predator stocks...

  13. Regional variation in fish predation intensity: a historical perspective in the Gulf of Maine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Witman, Jon D; Sebens, Kenneth P

    1992-06-01

    Regional variation in the intensity of fish predation on tethered brittle stars and crabs was measured at 30-33 m depths in the rocky subtidal zone at seven sites representing coastal and offshore regions of the Gulf of Maine, USA. Analysis of covariance comparing the slopes of brittle star survivorship curves followed by multiple comparisons tests revealed five groupings of sites, with significantly greater predation rates in the two offshore than in the three coastal groups. Brittle stars tethered at the three offshore sites were consumed primarily by cod, Gadus morhua, with 60-100% prey mortality occuring in 2.5 h. In striking contrast, only 6-28% of brittle star prey was consumed in the same amount of time at the four coastal sites, which were dominated by cunner, Tautogolabrus adspersus. In several coastal trials, a majority of brittle star prey remained after 24 h. The pattern of higher predation offshore held for rock crabs as well with only 2.7% of tethered crabs consumed (n=36) at coastal sites versus 57.8% of crabs (n=64) consumed at offshore sites. Another important predatory fish, the wolffish, Anarhichas lupus, consumed more tethered crabs than brittle stars. Videos and time-lapse movies indicated that cod and wolffish were significantly more abundant at offshore than at coastal sites. Three hundred years of fishing pressure in New England has severely depleted stocks of at least one important benthic predator, the cod, in coastal waters. We speculate that this human-induced predator removal has lowered predation pressure on crabs and other large mobile epibenthos in deep coastal communities. Transect data indicate that coastal sites with few cod support significantly higher densities of crabs than offshore sites with abundant cod.

  14. High-predation habitats affect the social dynamics of collective exploration in a shoaling fish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ioannou, Christos C; Ramnarine, Indar W; Torney, Colin J

    2017-05-01

    Collective decisions play a major role in the benefits that animals gain from living in groups. Although the mechanisms of how groups collectively make decisions have been extensively researched, the response of within-group dynamics to ecological conditions is virtually unknown, despite adaptation to the environment being a cornerstone in biology. We investigate how within-group interactions during exploration of a novel environment are shaped by predation, a major influence on the behavior of prey species. We tested guppies ( Poecilia reticulata ) from rivers varying in predation risk under controlled laboratory conditions and find the first evidence of differences in group interactions between animals adapted to different levels of predation. Fish from high-predation habitats showed the strongest negative relationship between initiating movements and following others, which resulted in less variability in the total number of movements made between individuals. This relationship between initiating movements and following others was associated with differentiation into initiators and followers, which was only observed in fish from high-predation rivers. The differentiation occurred rapidly, as trials lasted 5 min, and was related to shoal cohesion, where more diverse groups from high-predation habitats were more cohesive. Our results show that even within a single species over a small geographical range, decision-making in a social context can vary with local ecological factors.

  15. Simulated predator stimuli reduce brain cell proliferation in two electric fish species, Brachyhypopomus gauderio and Apteronotus leptorhynchus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunlap, Kent D; Keane, Geoffrey; Ragazzi, Michael; Lasky, Elise; Salazar, Vielka L

    2017-07-01

    The brain structure of many animals is influenced by their predators, but the cellular processes underlying this brain plasticity are not well understood. Previous studies showed that electric fish ( Brachyhypopomus occidentalis ) naturally exposed to high predator ( Rhamdia quelen ) density and tail injury had reduced brain cell proliferation compared with individuals facing few predators and those with intact tails. However, these field studies described only correlations between predator exposure and cell proliferation. Here, we used a congener Brachyhypopomus gauderio and another electric fish Apteronotus leptorhynchus to experimentally test the hypothesis that exposure to a predator stimulus and tail injury causes alterations in brain cell proliferation. To simulate predator exposure, we either amputated the tail followed by short-term (1 day) or long-term (17-18 days) recovery or repeatedly chased intact fish with a plastic rod over a 7 day period. We measured cell proliferation (PCNA+ cell density) in the telencephalon and diencephalon, and plasma cortisol, which commonly mediates stress-induced changes in brain cell proliferation. In both species, either tail amputation or simulated predator chase decreased cell proliferation in the telencephalon in a manner resembling the effect of predators in the field. In A. leptorhynchus , cell proliferation decreased drastically in the short term after tail amputation and partially rebounded after long-term recovery. In B. gauderio , tail amputation elevated cortisol levels, but repeated chasing had no effect. In A. leptorhynchus , tail amputation elevated cortisol levels in the short term but not in the long term. Thus, predator stimuli can cause reductions in brain cell proliferation, but the role of cortisol is not clear. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  16. Coral reef fish predator maintains olfactory acuity in degraded coral habitats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Natt

    Full Text Available Coral reefs around the world are rapidly degrading due to a range of environmental stressors. Habitat degradation modifies the sensory landscape within which predator-prey interactions occur, with implications for olfactory-mediated behaviours. Predator naïve settlement-stage damselfish rely on conspecific damage-released odours (i.e., alarm odours to inform risk assessments. Yet, species such as the Ambon damselfish, Pomacentrus amboinensis, become unable to respond appropriately to these cues when living in dead-degraded coral habitats, leading to increased mortality through loss of vigilance. Reef fish predators also rely on odours from damaged prey to locate, assess prey quality and engage in prey-stealing, but it is unknown whether their responses are also modified by the change to dead-degraded coral habitats. Implications for prey clearly depend on how their predatory counterparts are affected, therefore the present study tested whether olfactory-mediated foraging responses in the dusky dottyback, Pseudochromis fuscus, a common predator of P. amboinensis, were similarly affected by coral degradation. A y-maze was used to measure the ability of Ps. fuscus to detect and move towards odours, against different background water sources. Ps. fuscus were exposed to damage-released odours from juvenile P. amboinensis, or a control cue of seawater, against a background of seawater treated with either healthy or dead-degraded hard coral. Predators exhibited an increased time allocation to the chambers of y-mazes injected with damage-released odours, with comparable levels of response in both healthy and dead-degraded coral treated waters. In control treatments, where damage-released odours were replaced with a control seawater cue, fish showed no increased preference for either chamber of the y-maze. Our results suggest that olfactory-mediated foraging behaviours may persist in Ps. fuscus within dead-degraded coral habitats. Ps. fuscus may

  17. Predation risk shapes social networks in fission-fusion populations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer L Kelley

    Full Text Available Predation risk is often associated with group formation in prey, but recent advances in methods for analysing the social structure of animal societies make it possible to quantify the effects of risk on the complex dynamics of spatial and temporal organisation. In this paper we use social network analysis to investigate the impact of variation in predation risk on the social structure of guppy shoals and the frequency and duration of shoal splitting (fission and merging (fusion events. Our analyses revealed that variation in the level of predation risk was associated with divergent social dynamics, with fish in high-risk populations displaying a greater number of associations with overall greater strength and connectedness than those from low-risk sites. Temporal patterns of organisation also differed according to predation risk, with fission events more likely to occur over two short time periods (5 minutes and 20 minutes in low-predation fish and over longer time scales (>1.5 hours in high-predation fish. Our findings suggest that predation risk influences the fine-scale social structure of prey populations and that the temporal aspects of organisation play a key role in defining social systems.

  18. Predation Risk Shapes Social Networks in Fission-Fusion Populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelley, Jennifer L.; Morrell, Lesley J.; Inskip, Chloe; Krause, Jens; Croft, Darren P.

    2011-01-01

    Predation risk is often associated with group formation in prey, but recent advances in methods for analysing the social structure of animal societies make it possible to quantify the effects of risk on the complex dynamics of spatial and temporal organisation. In this paper we use social network analysis to investigate the impact of variation in predation risk on the social structure of guppy shoals and the frequency and duration of shoal splitting (fission) and merging (fusion) events. Our analyses revealed that variation in the level of predation risk was associated with divergent social dynamics, with fish in high-risk populations displaying a greater number of associations with overall greater strength and connectedness than those from low-risk sites. Temporal patterns of organisation also differed according to predation risk, with fission events more likely to occur over two short time periods (5 minutes and 20 minutes) in low-predation fish and over longer time scales (>1.5 hours) in high-predation fish. Our findings suggest that predation risk influences the fine-scale social structure of prey populations and that the temporal aspects of organisation play a key role in defining social systems. PMID:21912627

  19. The use of coded wire tags to estimate cormorant predation on fish stocks in an estuary

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jepsen, Niels; Klenke, Reinhard; Sonnesen, Per Michael

    2010-01-01

    One of the main obstacles to resolving the conflict between an increasing population of cormorants, Phalacrocorax carbo sinensis, and the fishing industry is the lack of documentation of the effect of the birds’ predation on fish stocks. Tagging and releasing fish with coded wire tags followed...

  20. Predation by Northern Pikeminnow and tiger muskellunge on juvenile salmonids in a high–head reservoir: Implications for anadromous fish reintroductions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sorel, Mark H.; Hansen, Adam G.; Connelly, Kristin A.; Wilson, Andrew C.; Lowery, Erin D.; Beauchamp, David A.

    2016-01-01

    The feasibility of reintroducing anadromous salmonids into reservoirs above high-head dams is affected by the suitability of the reservoir habitat for rearing and the interactions of the resident fish with introduced fish. We evaluated the predation risk to anadromous salmonids considered for reintroduction in Merwin Reservoir on the North Fork Lewis River in Washington State for two reservoir use-scenarios: year-round rearing and smolt migration. We characterized the role of the primary predators, Northern Pikeminnow Ptychocheilus oregonensis and tiger muskellunge (Northern Pike Esox lucius × Muskellunge E. masquinongy), by using stable isotopes and stomach content analysis, quantified seasonal, per capita predation using bioenergetics modeling, and evaluated the size and age structures of the populations. We then combined these inputs to estimate predation rates of size-structured population units. Northern Pikeminnow of FL ≥ 300 mm were highly cannibalistic and exhibited modest, seasonal, per capita predation on salmonids, but they were disproportionately much less abundant than smaller, less piscivorous, conspecifics. The annual predation on kokanee Oncorhynchus nerka (in biomass) by a size-structured unit of 1,000 Northern Pikeminnow having a FL ≥ 300 mm was analogous to 16,000–40,000 age-0 spring Chinook Salmon O. tshawytscha rearing year-round, or 400–1,000 age-1 smolts migrating April–June. The per capita consumption of salmonids by Northern Pikeminnow having a FL ≥ 200 mm was relatively low, due in large part to spatial segregation during the summer and the skewed size distribution of the predator population. Tiger muskellunge fed heavily on Northern Pikeminnow, other nonsalmonids, and minimally on salmonids. In addition to cannibalism within the Northern Pikeminnow population, predation by tiger muskellunge likely contributed to the low recruitment of larger (more piscivorous) Northern Pikeminnow, thereby decreasing the risk of predation to

  1. Indirect manifestation of cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo sinensis (L. predation on pond fish stock

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Kortan

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available The damage to fisheries caused by cormorant predation pressure consists of losses due to direct predation and subsequent indirect losses elicited by cormorant feeding activities resulting in fish wounding and stress. Healed wounds reduce the commercial value of afflicted fish and stress may impact fish body and health condition. Fulton´s condition coefficient (FCC was calculated for wounded and healthy two-year old carp originating from five South Moravian (Czech Republic fishponds. Significant (P = 0.0011 differences in FCC (mean ± s.d., were found between non-wounded (1.48 ± 0.11, n = 19 and wounded mirror common carp, Cyprinus carpio (1.33 ± 0.14, n = 19. However no differences (P > 0.05 were recorded in scaly common carp between non-wounded (FCC 1.41 ± 0.25, n = 33 and wounded (FCC 1.46 ± 0.47, n = 33 fish of the same age and size category. A computer assisted image analysis was applied to describe the extent of such injuries. In the case of two-year old mirror, scaly and bighead carp (Aristichthys nobilis, signs of serious injuries (necroses were recorded on 1.93, 0.89 and 1.61% of body surface, respectively. Fish with deep wounds and scars, often accompanied with progressive necroses, were subject to parasitological examination. The percentage of wounded fish from total fish harvested was evaluated as ranging between < 1 and 47.4% in five ponds under study.

  2. Turbidity interferes with foraging success of visual but not chemosensory predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lunt, Jessica; Smee, Delbert L

    2015-01-01

    Predation can significantly affect prey populations and communities, but predator effects can be attenuated when abiotic conditions interfere with foraging activities. In estuarine communities, turbidity can affect species richness and abundance and is changing in many areas because of coastal development. Many fish species are less efficient foragers in turbid waters, and previous research revealed that in elevated turbidity, fish are less abundant whereas crabs and shrimp are more abundant. We hypothesized that turbidity altered predatory interactions in estuaries by interfering with visually-foraging predators and prey but not with organisms relying on chemoreception. We measured the effects of turbidity on the predation rates of two model predators: a visual predator (pinfish, Lagodon rhomboides) and a chemosensory predator (blue crabs, Callinectes sapidus) in clear and turbid water (0 and ∼100 nephelometric turbidity units). Feeding assays were conducted with two prey items, mud crabs (Panopeus spp.) that rely heavily on chemoreception to detect predators, and brown shrimp (Farfantepenaus aztecus) that use both chemical and visual cues for predator detection. Because turbidity reduced pinfish foraging on both mud crabs and shrimp, the changes in predation rates are likely driven by turbidity attenuating fish foraging ability and not by affecting prey vulnerability to fish consumers. Blue crab foraging was unaffected by turbidity, and blue crabs were able to successfully consume nearly all mud crab and shrimp prey. Turbidity can influence predator-prey interactions by reducing the feeding efficiency of visual predators, providing a competitive advantage to chemosensory predators, and altering top-down control in food webs.

  3. Salmon fishing by bears and the dawn of cooperative predation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stringham, Stephen F

    2012-11-01

    Although bears are an epitome of solitary predation, black (Ursus americanus) and brown bears (U. arctos) occasionally act in pairs to capture salmon (Onchorynchous spp.). I sought to identify conditions that promote pairing and how this relates to optimal foraging. This study on Alaskan black bears assessed whether each mode of fishing (solo vs. paired) occurs mainly where it is most efficient at harvesting salmon--that is, whether modal group size (1 vs. 2) is also optimal size. Not in this case. Pairing increased captures per attempt (benefit/cost ratio = profitability) by up to 47% and captures per minute by up to 5.2-fold. Yet, the ratio of paired versus solo fishing was significantly lower than either profitability or chance explains. Modal group size was 1, optimal size was 2. This discrepancy did not result from intervention by other current benefits and costs, but from unnecessary defensiveness toward any rapidly approaching conspecific, even though it was chasing salmon, not threatening. For bears to regularly hunt cooperatively, they would have to more readily habituate to agonistic-like predatory actions, communicate intentions from > 10 m apart, and assess situational variations in benefit/cost ratios for solo versus paired hunting. It would be revealing to discover how social carnivores overcame these challenges.

  4. Hydrodynamic patterns from fast-starts in teleost fish and their possible relevance to predator-prey interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niesterok, Benedikt; Hanke, Wolf

    2013-02-01

    Fast-starts are distributed over a wide phylogenetic range of fish and are used for different purposes such as striking at prey or escaping from predators. Here we investigated 42 fast-starts of rainbow trouts (Oncorhynchus mykiss) elicited by a startle stimulus. We investigated the patterns of water movements left behind by the escaping fish and their possible value as a source of information to piscivorous predators that rely on hydrodynamic sensory systems. Particle image velocimetry (PIV) measurements revealed a temporal extension of up to 25.5 min and a spatial extension of up to 1.53 m (extrapolated) for a certain flow structure called jet 1, that is the flow produced by the tail fin. Duration and spatial extension of jet 2, the flow produced by the body, were on average lower, and both jets differed in size. The fish escaped in a mean direction approximately parallel to jet 1, and antiparallel to jet 2, with a range well above 200°. This study quantified the flow patterns generated by escaping fish and, as piscivorous predators would greatly benefit from being able to analyse these flow patterns, provides cues for the behavioural and physiological investigation of hydrodynamic sensory systems.

  5. Prediction of fish biomass, harvest and prey--predator relations in reservoirs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jenkins, R.M.

    1977-01-01

    Regression analyses of the effect of total dissolved solids on fish standing crops in 166 reservoirs produced formulas with coefficients of determination of 0.63 to 0.81. These formulas provide indexes to average biotic conditions and help to identify stressed aquatic environments. Simple predictive formulas are also presented for clupeid crops in various reservoir types, as clupeids are the fishes most frequently impinged or entrained at southern power plants. A method of calculating the adequacy of the available prey crop in relation to the predator crop is advanced to further aid in identification of perturbed prey populations. Assessment of stress as reflected by changes in sport fishing success can also be approached by comparison of the predicted harvest potential with actual fish harvest data. Use of these predictive indexes is recommended until more elaborate models are developed to identify power plant effects

  6. Depth-variable settlement patterns and predation influence on newly settled reef fishes (Haemulon spp., Haemulidae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lance K B Jordan

    Full Text Available During early demersal ontogeny, many marine fishes display complex habitat-use patterns. Grunts of the speciose genus Haemulon are among the most abundant fishes on western North Atlantic coral reefs, with most species settling to shallow habitats (≤12 m. To gain understanding into cross-shelf distributional patterns exhibited by newly settled stages of grunts (<2 cm total length, we examined: 1 depth-specific distributions of congeners at settlement among sites at 8 m, 12 m, and 21 m, and 2 depth-variable predation pressure on newly settled individuals (species pooled. Of the six species identified from collections of newly settled specimens (n = 2125, Haemulon aurolineatum (tomtate, H. flavolineatum (French grunt, and H. striatum (striped grunt comprised 98% of the total abundance; with the first two species present at all sites. Prevalence of H. aurolineatum and H. flavolineatum decreased substantially from the 8-m site to the two deeper sites. In contrast, H. striatum was absent from the 8-m site and exhibited its highest frequency at the 21-m site. Comparison of newly settled grunt delta density for all species on caged (predator exclusion and control artificial reefs at the shallowest site (8-m revealed no difference, while the 12-m and 21-m sites exhibited significantly greater delta densities on the caged treatment. This result, along with significantly higher abundances of co-occurring piscivorous fishes at the deeper sites, indicated lower predation pressure at the 8-m site. This study suggests habitat-use patterns of newly settled stages of some coral reef fishes that undergo ontogenetic shifts are a function of depth-variable predation pressure while, for at least one deeper-water species, proximity to adult habitat appears to be an important factor affecting settlement distribution.

  7. Early life-history predator-prey reversal in two cyprinid fishes

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Šmejkal, Marek; Baran, Roman; Blabolil, Petr; Vejřík, Lukáš; Prchalová, Marie; Bartoň, Daniel; Mrkvička, Tomáš; Kubečka, Jan

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 7, JUL (2017), č. článku 6924. ISSN 2045-2322 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) 7F14316; GA ČR GPP505/12/P647 Grant - others:AV ČR(CZ) StrategieAV21/9 Program:StrategieAV Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : predator-prey relationship * fish spawning * bleak * asp Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour OBOR OECD: Ecology Impact factor: 4.259, year: 2016

  8. Population Variation in the Life History of a Land Fish, Alticus arnoldorum, and the Effects of Predation and Density.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edward R M Platt

    Full Text Available Life history variation can often reflect differences in age-specific mortality within populations, with the general expectation that reproduction should be shifted away from ages experiencing increased mortality. Investigators of life history in vertebrates frequently focus on the impact of predation, but there is increasing evidence that predation may have unexpected impacts on population density that in turn prompt unexpected changes in life history. There are also other reasons why density might impact life history independently of predation or mortality more generally. We investigated the consequences of predation and density on life history variation among populations of the Pacific leaping blenny, Alticus arnoldorum. This fish from the island of Guam spends its adult life out of the water on rocks in the splash zone, where it is vulnerable to predation and can be expected to be sensitive to changes in population density that impact resource availability. We found populations invested more in reproduction as predation decreased, while growth rate varied primarily in response to population density. These differences in life history among populations are likely plastic given the extensive gene flow among populations revealed by a previous study. The influence of predation and density on life history was unlikely to have operated independently of each other, with predation rate tending to be associated with reduced population densities. Taken together, our results suggest predation and density can have complex influences on life history, and that plastic life history traits could allow populations to persist in new or rapidly changing environments.

  9. Hypoxia increases the risk of egg predation in a nest-guarding fish

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Olsson, Karin; Kvarnemo, Charlotta; Andrén, Maria Norevik

    2016-01-01

    For fish with parental care, a nest should meet both the oxygenation needs of the eggs and help protect them against predators. While a small nest opening facilitates the latter, it impedes the former and vice versa. We investigated how the presence of potential egg predators in the form of shore...... in high oxygen reduced fanning, males in low oxygen did not. Filial cannibalism was unaffected by treatment. Sand gobies thus prioritize egg ventilation over the protection afforded by small nest openings under hypoxia and adopt defensive behaviour to avert predator attention, even though this does...... crabs Carcinus maenas affects nest building, egg fanning, defensive displays and filial cannibalism of egg-guarding male sand gobies Pomatoschistus minutus under two levels of dissolved oxygen. In the high oxygen treatment, males retained their nest opening size in the presence of crabs, while males...

  10. Bioenergetics modeling of the annual consumption of zooplankton by pelagic fish feeding in the Northeast Atlantic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bachiller, Eneko; Utne, Kjell Rong; Jansen, Teunis

    2018-01-01

    The present study uses bioenergetics modeling to estimate the annual consumption of the main zooplankton groups by some of the most commercially important planktivorous fish stocks in the Northeast Atlantic, namely Norwegian spring-spawning (NSS) herring (Clupea harengus), blue whiting (Micromesi......The present study uses bioenergetics modeling to estimate the annual consumption of the main zooplankton groups by some of the most commercially important planktivorous fish stocks in the Northeast Atlantic, namely Norwegian spring-spawning (NSS) herring (Clupea harengus), blue whiting...

  11. Consistent selection towards low activity phenotypes when catchability depends on encounters among human predators and fish.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Josep Alós

    Full Text Available Together with life-history and underlying physiology, the behavioural variability among fish is one of the three main trait axes that determines the vulnerability to fishing. However, there are only a few studies that have systematically investigated the strength and direction of selection acting on behavioural traits. Using in situ fish behaviour revealed by telemetry techniques as input, we developed an individual-based model (IBM that simulated the Lagrangian trajectory of prey (fish moving within a confined home range (HR. Fishers exhibiting various prototypical fishing styles targeted these fish in the model. We initially hypothesised that more active and more explorative individuals would be systematically removed under all fished conditions, in turn creating negative selection differentials on low activity phenotypes and maybe on small HR. Our results partly supported these general predictions. Standardised selection differentials were, on average, more negative on HR than on activity. However, in many simulation runs, positive selection pressures on HR were also identified, which resulted from the stochastic properties of the fishes' movement and its interaction with the human predator. In contrast, there was a consistent negative selection on activity under all types of fishing styles. Therefore, in situations where catchability depends on spatial encounters between human predators and fish, we would predict a consistent selection towards low activity phenotypes and have less faith in the direction of the selection on HR size. Our study is the first theoretical investigation on the direction of fishery-induced selection of behaviour using passive fishing gears. The few empirical studies where catchability of fish was measured in relation to passive fishing techniques, such as gill-nets, traps or recreational fishing, support our predictions that fish in highly exploited situations are, on average, characterised by low swimming activity

  12. Phenotypic Plasticity in Gut Length in the Planktivorous Filter-Feeding Silver Carp (Hypophthalmichthys molitrix

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhixin Ke

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Phenotypic plasticity widely exists in the external morphology of animals as well as the internal traits of organs. In the present study, we studied the gut length plasticity of planktivorous filter-feeding silver carp under different food resources in large-net cage experiments in Meiliang Bay of Lake Taihu in 2004 and 2005. There was a significant difference in stocking density between these 2 years. Under a low stocking density and abundant food resources, silver carp increased their energy intake by feeding on more zooplankton. Meanwhile, silver carp adjusted their gut length to match the digestive requirements of food when exposed to different food resources. In the main growth seasons (from April to October, silver carp significantly increased their relative gut length when feeding on more phytoplankton in 2005 (p < 0.01, 9.23 ± 1.80 in 2004 and 10.77 ± 2.05 in 2005, respectively. There was a nearly significant negative correlation between zooplankton proportion in the diet and the relative gut length when silver carp were stocked in a high density (p = 0.112. It appears that silver carp might have evolved plasticity to change their gut length rapidly to facilitate efficient utilization of food resources. Such resource polymorphisms in the gut may be a good indication of temporal adaptation to resource conditions. Our work provided field evidence for understanding the functional basis of resource polymorphisms and the evolution of phenotypic plasticity in planktivorous filter-feeding fish.

  13. Predation of the zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) by freshwater drum in western Lake Erie

    Science.gov (United States)

    French, John R. P.; Bur, Michael T.; Nalepa, Thomas F.; Schloesser, Donald W.

    1992-01-01

    Environmental and economic problems associated with the colonization of zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) in western Lake Erie created a need to investigate control mechanisms. Predation by fishes is one potential means of control, but predation on zebra mussels by native fishes in Lake Erie is unknown. The freshwater drum (Aplodinotus grunniens) is the most likely fish predator since it is the only fish with pharyngeal teeth capable of crushing mollusk shells. In 1990, freshwater drum were collected in western Lake Erie from 9 sites near rocky reefs and 13 sites with silt or sand bottoms, and gut contents were examined. Predation on zebra mussels increased as drum size increased. Small drum (200-249 mm in length) fed mainly on dipterans, amphipods, and small fish; small zebra mussels (375 mm in length) fed almost exclusively on zebra mussels (seasons and locations combined). The smallest drum capable of crushing zebra mussel shells was 265 mm. Since freshwater drum over 375 mm feed heavily on zebra mussels, they may become a possible biological control mechanism for mussels in portions of North America.

  14. Behind the impact of introduced trout in high altitude lakes: adult, not juvenile fish are responsible of the selective predation on crustacean zooplankton

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rocco Tiberti

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Introduced fish seriously affect zooplankton communities in mountain lakes, often leading to the loss of large species. Selective predation is recognized to be the ultimate cause of such a strong impact. Here we describe the selection of zooplankton prey by analyzing the stomach contents of more than 300 brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis inhabiting seven alpine lakes in the Gran Paradiso National Park (western Italian Alps. Our results show that planktivory is much more common in young fish, which feed on a larger number of taxa, but also adult fish maintain the ability to feed on zooplankton. There is a direct dependence between the length of zooplankton prey and the length of their fish predators, and adult, not juvenile fish are responsible of the selective predation on large crustacean zooplankton, which drive the impact of introduced fish throughout the entire zooplankton community. In some rare cases, large zooplankton populations develop in the presence of brook trout, and planktivory can become an important temporary resource for adult fish during the ice-free season. Thus, in the early stages of the establishment of non-native trout in alpine lakes, large-bodied zooplankton may represent an important food resource.

  15. Sublethal effects of catch-and-release fishing: measuring capture stress, fish impairment, and predation risk using a condition index

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Matthew D.; Patino, Reynaldo; Tolan, J.M.; Strauss, R.E.; Diamond, S.

    2009-01-01

    The sublethal effects of simulated capture of red snapper (Lutjanus campechanus) were analysed using physiological responses, condition indexing, and performance variables. Simulated catch-and-release fishing included combinations of depth of capture and thermocline exposure reflective of environmental conditions experienced in the Gulf of Mexico. Frequency of occurrence of barotrauma and lack of reflex response exhibited considerable individual variation. When combined into a single condition or impairment index, individual variation was reduced, and impairment showed significant increases as depth increased and with the addition of thermocline exposure. Performance variables, such as burst swimming speed (BSS) and simulated predator approach distance (AD), were also significantly different by depth. BSSs and predator ADs decreased with increasing depth, were lowest immediately after release, and were affected for up to 15 min, with longer recovery times required as depth increased. The impairment score developed was positively correlated with cortisol concentration and negatively correlated with both BSS and simulated predator AD. The impairment index proved to be an efficient method to estimate the overall impairment of red snapper in the laboratory simulations of capture and shows promise for use in field conditions, to estimate release mortality and vulnerability to predation.

  16. Hyperspectral imaging of cuttlefish camouflage indicates good color match in the eyes of fish predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiao, Chuan-Chin; Wickiser, J Kenneth; Allen, Justine J; Genter, Brock; Hanlon, Roger T

    2011-05-31

    Camouflage is a widespread phenomenon throughout nature and an important antipredator tactic in natural selection. Many visual predators have keen color perception, and thus camouflage patterns should provide some degree of color matching in addition to other visual factors such as pattern, contrast, and texture. Quantifying camouflage effectiveness in the eyes of the predator is a challenge from the perspectives of both biology and optical imaging technology. Here we take advantage of hyperspectral imaging (HSI), which records full-spectrum light data, to simultaneously visualize color match and pattern match in the spectral and the spatial domains, respectively. Cuttlefish can dynamically camouflage themselves on any natural substrate and, despite their colorblindness, produce body patterns that appear to have high-fidelity color matches to the substrate when viewed directly by humans or with RGB images. Live camouflaged cuttlefish on natural backgrounds were imaged using HSI, and subsequent spectral analysis revealed that most reflectance spectra of individual cuttlefish and substrates were similar, rendering the color match possible. Modeling color vision of potential di- and trichromatic fish predators of cuttlefish corroborated the spectral match analysis and demonstrated that camouflaged cuttlefish show good color match as well as pattern match in the eyes of fish predators. These findings (i) indicate the strong potential of HSI technology to enhance studies of biological coloration and (ii) provide supporting evidence that cuttlefish can produce color-coordinated camouflage on natural substrates despite lacking color vision.

  17. Personality differences in two minnow populations that differ in their parasitism and predation risk

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    Raine eKortet

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Animals are often individually consistent in their behavior, not only over time, but also across different functional contexts. Recent research has focused on phenotypic and evolutionary mechanisms explaining such personality differences through selection. Parasitism and predation induce important mortality and fitness costs, and are thus the main candidates to create and maintain personality differences in the wild. Here, we present data on the behavioral consistency of the Eurasian minnow (Phoxinus phoxinus from two populations that live in different tributaries of the same river, but whose ecological environment differs fundamentally with regard to predation and parasitism. We experimentally demonstrate that minnow in both study populations are consistent in their boldness and activity. However, the two study populations differ notably: in the high predation and parasitism risk population fish show higher mean boldness, but tend to be less active than fish in low predation and parasitism risk population. Parasite (Diplostomum phoxini load was negatively, but not statistically significantly, associated with fish activity level. Our study suggests that parasitism and predation are likely important agents in the ecology and evolution of animal personalities.

  18. Alcohol impairs predation risk response and communication in zebrafish.

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    Thiago Acosta Oliveira

    Full Text Available The effects of ethanol exposure on Danio rerio have been studied from the perspectives of developmental biology and behavior. However, little is known about the effects of ethanol on the prey-predator relationship and chemical communication of predation risk. Here, we showed that visual contact with a predator triggers stress axis activation in zebrafish. We also observed a typical stress response in zebrafish receiving water from these conspecifics, indicating that these fish chemically communicate predation risk. Our work is the first to demonstrate how alcohol effects this prey-predator interaction. We showed for the first time that alcohol exposure completely blocks stress axis activation in both fish seeing the predator and in fish that come in indirect contact with a predator by receiving water from these conspecifics. Together with other research results and with the translational relevance of this fish species, our data points to zebrafish as a promising animal model to study human alcoholism.

  19. Effects of elevated CO2 on predator avoidance behaviour by reef fishes is not altered by experimental test water

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    Philip L. Munday

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Pioneering studies into the effects of elevated CO2 on the behaviour of reef fishes often tested high-CO2 reared fish using control water in the test arena. While subsequent studies using rearing treatment water (control or high CO2 in the test arena have confirmed the effects of high CO2 on a range of reef fish behaviours, a further investigation into the use of different test water in the experimental arena is warranted. Here, we used a fully factorial design to test the effect of rearing treatment water (control or high CO2 and experimental test water (control or high CO2 on antipredator responses of larval reef fishes. We tested antipredator behaviour in larval clownfish Amphiprion percula and ambon damselfish Pomacentrus amboinensis, two species that have been used in previous high CO2 experiments. Specifically, we tested if: (1 using control or high CO2 water in a two channel flume influenced the response of larval clownfish to predator odour; and (2 using control or high CO2 water in the test arena influenced the escape response of larval damselfish to a startle stimulus. Finally, (3 because the effects of high CO2 on fish behaviour appear to be caused by altered function of the GABA-A neurotransmitter we tested if antipredator behaviours were restored in clownfish treated with a GABA antagonist (gabazine in high CO2 water. Larval clownfish reared from hatching in control water (496 µatm strongly avoided predator cue whereas larval clownfish reared from hatching in high CO2 (1,022 µatm were attracted to the predator cue, as has been reported in previous studies. There was no effect on fish responses of using either control or high CO2 water in the flume. Larval damselfish reared for four days in high CO2 (1,051 µatm exhibited a slower response to a startle stimulus and slower escape speed compared with fish reared in control conditions (464 µatm. There was no effect of test water on escape responses. Treatment of high-CO2 reared

  20. Aquatic macroinvertebrate responses to native and non-native predators

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    Haddaway N. R.

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Non-native species can profoundly affect native ecosystems through trophic interactions with native species. Native prey may respond differently to non-native versus native predators since they lack prior experience. Here we investigate antipredator responses of two common freshwater macroinvertebrates, Gammarus pulex and Potamopyrgus jenkinsi, to olfactory cues from three predators; sympatric native fish (Gasterosteus aculeatus, sympatric native crayfish (Austropotamobius pallipes, and novel invasive crayfish (Pacifastacus leniusculus. G. pulex responded differently to fish and crayfish; showing enhanced locomotion in response to fish, but a preference for the dark over the light in response to the crayfish. P.jenkinsi showed increased vertical migration in response to all three predator cues relative to controls. These different responses to fish and crayfish are hypothesised to reflect the predators’ differing predation types; benthic for crayfish and pelagic for fish. However, we found no difference in response to native versus invasive crayfish, indicating that prey naiveté is unlikely to drive the impacts of invasive crayfish. The Predator Recognition Continuum Hypothesis proposes that benefits of generalisable predator recognition outweigh costs when predators are diverse. Generalised responses of prey as observed here will be adaptive in the presence of an invader, and may reduce novel predators’ potential impacts.

  1. Putting prey and predator into the CO2 equation--qualitative and quantitative effects of ocean acidification on predator-prey interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrari, Maud C O; McCormick, Mark I; Munday, Philip L; Meekan, Mark G; Dixson, Danielle L; Lonnstedt, Öona; Chivers, Douglas P

    2011-11-01

    Little is known about the impact of ocean acidification on predator-prey dynamics. Herein, we examined the effect of carbon dioxide (CO(2)) on both prey and predator by letting one predatory reef fish interact for 24 h with eight small or large juvenile damselfishes from four congeneric species. Both prey and predator were exposed to control or elevated levels of CO(2). Mortality rate and predator selectivity were compared across CO(2) treatments, prey size and species. Small juveniles of all species sustained greater mortality at high CO(2) levels, while large recruits were not affected. For large prey, the pattern of prey selectivity by predators was reversed under elevated CO(2). Our results demonstrate both quantitative and qualitative consumptive effects of CO(2) on small and larger damselfish recruits respectively, resulting from CO(2)-induced behavioural changes likely mediated by impaired neurological function. This study highlights the complexity of predicting the effects of climate change on coral reef ecosystems. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/CNRS.

  2. Are all prey created equal? A review and synthesis of differential predation on prey in substandard condition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mesa, Matthew G.; Poe, Thomas P.; Gadomski, Dena M.; Petersen, James H.

    1994-01-01

    Our understanding of predator-prey interactions in fishes has been influenced largely by research assuming that the condition of the participants is normal. However, fish populations today often reside in anthropogenically altered environments and are subjected to many kinds of stressors, which may reduce their ecological performance by adversely affecting their morphology, physiology, or behaviour. One consequence is that either the predator or prey, or both, may be in a substandard condition at the time of an interaction. We reviewed the literature on predator-prey interactions in fishes where substandard prey were used as experimental groups. Although most of this research indicates that such prey are significantly more vulnerable to predation, prey condition has rarely been considered in ecological theory regarding predator-prey interactions. The causal mechanisms for increased vulnerability of substandard prey to predation include a failure to detect predators, lapses in decision-making, poor fast-start performance, inability to shoal effectively, and increased prey conspicuousness. Despite some problems associated with empirical predator-prey studies using substandard prey, their results can have theoretical and applied uses, such as in ecological modelling or justification of corrective measures to be implemented in the wild. There is a need for more corroborative field experimentation, a better understanding of the causal mechanisms behind differential predation, and increased incorporation of prey condition into the research of predator-prey modellers and theoreticians. If the concept of prey condition is considered in predator-prey interactions, our understanding of how such interactions influence the structure and dynamics of fish communities is likely to change, which should prove beneficial to aquatic ecosystems.

  3. Increased noise levels have different impacts on the anti-predator behaviour of two sympatric fish species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Irene K Voellmy

    Full Text Available Animals must avoid predation to survive and reproduce, and there is increasing evidence that man-made (anthropogenic factors can influence predator-prey relationships. Anthropogenic noise has been shown to have a variety of effects on many species, but work investigating the impact on anti-predator behaviour is rare. In this laboratory study, we examined how additional noise (playback of field recordings of a ship passing through a harbour, compared with control conditions (playback of recordings from the same harbours without ship noise, affected responses to a visual predatory stimulus. We compared the anti-predator behaviour of two sympatric fish species, the three-spined stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus and the European minnow (Phoxinus phoxinus, which share similar feeding and predator ecologies, but differ in their body armour. Effects of additional-noise playbacks differed between species: sticklebacks responded significantly more quickly to the visual predatory stimulus during additional-noise playbacks than during control conditions, while minnows exhibited no significant change in their response latency. Our results suggest that elevated noise levels have the potential to affect anti-predator behaviour of different species in different ways. Future field-based experiments are needed to confirm whether this effect and the interspecific difference exist in relation to real-world noise sources, and to determine survival and population consequences.

  4. Evaluating the importance of abiotic and biotic drivers on Bythotrephes biomass in Lakes Superior and Michigan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keeler, Kevin M.; Bunnell, David B.; Diana, James S.; Adams, Jean V.; Mychek-Londer, Justin G.; Warner, David M.; Yule, Daniel; Vinson, Mark

    2015-01-01

    The ability of planktivorous fishes to exert top-down control on Bythotrephes potentially has far-reaching impacts on aquatic food-webs, given previously described effects of Bythotrephes on zooplankton communities. We estimated consumption of Bythotrephes by planktivorous and benthivorous fishes, using bioenergetics and daily ration models at nearshore (18 m), intermediate (46 m), and offshore (110 m) depths along one western Lake Superior transect (April, and September-November) and two northern Lake Michigan transects (April, July, September). In Lake Superior, consumption (primarily by cisco Coregonus artedi) exceeded Bythotrephes production at all offshore sites in September-November (up to 396% of production consumed) and at the intermediate site in November (842%) with no evidence of consumption nearshore. By comparing Bythotrephes biomass following months of excessive consumption, we conservatively concluded that top-down control was evident only at the offshore site during September-October. In Lake Michigan, consumption by fishes (primarily alewife Alosa pseudoharengus) exceeded production at nearshore sites (up to 178%), but not in deeper sites (additive models, temperature, and not fish consumption, not zooplankton prey density, best explained variability in Bythotrephes biomass. The non-linear pattern revealed Bythotrephes to increase with temperature up to 16 °C, and then decline between 16 and 23 °C. We discuss how temperature likely has direct negative impacts on Bythotrephes when temperatures near 23 °C, but speculate that predation also contributes to declining biomass when temperatures exceed 16 °C.

  5. Predator recognition in rainbowfish, Melanotaenia duboulayi, embryos.

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    Lois Jane Oulton

    Full Text Available Exposure to olfactory cues during embryonic development can have long term impacts on birds and amphibians behaviour. Despite the vast literature on predator recognition and responses in fishes, few researchers have determined how fish embryos respond to predator cues. Here we exposed four-day-old rainbowfish (Melanotaenia duboulayi embryos to cues emanating from a novel predator, a native predator and injured conspecifics. Their response was assessed by monitoring heart rate and hatch time. Results showed that embryos have an innate capacity to differentiate between cues as illustrated by faster heart rates relative to controls. The greatest increase in heart rate occurred in response to native predator odour. While we found no significant change in the time taken for eggs to hatch, all treatments experienced slight delays as expected if embryos are attempting to reduce exposure to larval predators.

  6. Biodiversity effects of the predation gauntlet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stier, Adrian C.; Stallings, Christopher D.; Samhouri, Jameal F.; Albins, Mark A.; Almany, Glenn R.

    2017-06-01

    The ubiquity of trophic downgrading has led to interest in the consequences of mesopredator release on prey communities and ecosystems. This issue is of particular concern for reef-fish communities, where predation is a key process driving ecological and evolutionary dynamics. Here, we synthesize existing experiments that have isolated the effects of mesopredators to quantify the role of predation in driving changes in the abundance and biodiversity of recently settled reef fishes. On average, predators reduced prey abundance through generalist foraging behavior, which, through a statistical sampling artifact, caused a reduction in alpha diversity and an increase in beta diversity. Thus, the synthesized experiments provide evidence that predation reduces overall abundance within prey communities, but—after accounting for sampling effects—does not cause disproportionate effects on biodiversity.

  7. The Effects of Early-Life Predator Stress on Anxiety- and Depression-Like Behaviors of Adult Rats

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    Lu-jing Chen

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Childhood emotional trauma contributes significantly to certain psychopathologies, such as post-traumatic stress disorder. In experimental animals, however, whether or not early-life stress results in behavioral abnormalities in adult animals still remains controversial. Here, we investigated both short-term and long-term changes of anxiety- and depression-like behaviors of Wistar rats after being exposed to chronic feral cat stress in juvenile ages. The 2-week predator stress decreased spontaneous activities immediately following stress but did not increase depression- or anxiety-like behaviors 4 weeks after the stimulation in adulthood. Instead, juvenile predator stress had some protective effects, though not very obvious, in adulthood. We also exposed genetic depression model rats, Wistar Kyoto (WKY rats, to the same predator stress. In WKY rats, the same early-life predator stress did not enhance anxiety- or depression-like behaviors in both the short-term and long-term. However, the stressed WKY rats showed slightly reduced depression-like behaviors in adulthood. These results indicate that in both normal Wistar rats and WKY rats, early-life predator stress led to protective, rather than negative, effects in adulthood.

  8. The Effects of Early-Life Predator Stress on Anxiety- and Depression-Like Behaviors of Adult Rats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Lu-jing; Shen, Bing-qing; Liu, Dan-dan; Li, Sheng-tian

    2014-01-01

    Childhood emotional trauma contributes significantly to certain psychopathologies, such as post-traumatic stress disorder. In experimental animals, however, whether or not early-life stress results in behavioral abnormalities in adult animals still remains controversial. Here, we investigated both short-term and long-term changes of anxiety- and depression-like behaviors of Wistar rats after being exposed to chronic feral cat stress in juvenile ages. The 2-week predator stress decreased spontaneous activities immediately following stress but did not increase depression- or anxiety-like behaviors 4 weeks after the stimulation in adulthood. Instead, juvenile predator stress had some protective effects, though not very obvious, in adulthood. We also exposed genetic depression model rats, Wistar Kyoto (WKY) rats, to the same predator stress. In WKY rats, the same early-life predator stress did not enhance anxiety- or depression-like behaviors in both the short-term and long-term. However, the stressed WKY rats showed slightly reduced depression-like behaviors in adulthood. These results indicate that in both normal Wistar rats and WKY rats, early-life predator stress led to protective, rather than negative, effects in adulthood. PMID:24839560

  9. Predation and the evolution of complex oviposition behaviour in Amazon rainforest frogs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magnusson, William E; Hero, Jean-Marc

    1991-05-01

    Terrestrial oviposition with free-living aquatic larvae is a common reproductive mode used by amphibians within the central Amazonian rainforest. We investigated the factors presently associated with diversity of microhabitats (waterbodies) that may be maintaining the diversity of reproductive modes. In particular, desiccation, predation by fish, competition with other anurans and water quality were examined in 11 waterbodies as possible forces leading to the evolution of terrestrial oviposition. Predation experiments demonstrated that fish generally do not eat anuran eggs, and that predacious tadpoles and dytiscid beetle larvae are voracious predators of anuran eggs. The percentage of species with terrestrial oviposition was only weakly correlated with the occurrence of pond drying, pH and oxygen concentration, suggesting that anurans in this tropical community are able to use the range of water quality available for egg development. There was a tendency for terrestrial oviposition to be associated with the number of species of tadpoles using the waterbody, but we consider this to be spurious as there was no obvious competitive mechanism that could result in this relationship. The percentage of species with terrestrial oviposition was significantly positively related to our index of egg predation pressure, and negatively related to our index of fish biomass. Egg predation pressure was also negatively related to the index of fish biomass. These results allow us to discount as improbable the hypothesis that predation by fish on anuran eggs was an important selective pressure leading to terrestrial oviposition in this community. The strong positive relationship between terrestrial oviposition and our index of egg predation pressure indicates that these predators have exerted, and are exerting, a significant selective pressure for terrestrial oviposition. The strong negative relationship between the occurrence of fish and the egg predators suggests the surprising

  10. Testing strength of biotic resistance against an introduced fish: inter-specific competition or predation through facultative piscivory?

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    J Robert Britton

    Full Text Available Biotic resistance is the process where aspects of the receiving environment inhibit the establishment and invasion of an introduced species. Resistance against an introduced fish can be through strong competition and/or predation from resident fishes. Here, the biotic resistance against introduced topmouth gudgeon Pseudorasbora parva (a highly invasive fish in Europe by resident carp Cyprinus carpio was tested in experimental mesocosms. The introduction scenario was six adult P. parva (three male, three female on a single occasion. Resistance to their establishment was provided by three and six resident C. carpio whose effects on P. parva growth and reproduction were compared to a Control (no resident fish at the time of introduction and treatments containing three and six P. parva. After 120 days, the growth rates of the introduced P. parva were significantly depressed in C. carpio presence and in mesocosms with three C. carpio present, significantly decreased numbers of 0+P. parva were recorded. Where six C. carpio were present, no 0+P. parva were recorded, indicating resistance strength increased with carp abundance. In contrast, there were no differences in P. parva reproduction and growth rates between the Control and treatments containing conspecifics. Stable isotope analysis (δ(15N, δ(13C revealed C. carpio were feeding at one trophic level above 0+P. parva, suggesting the process of resistance was predation (facultative piscivory rather than competition. Thus, if P. parva are to establish and invade following an introduction, they must overcome this biotic resistance from cyprinid fishes such as C. carpio.

  11. Recreational Fish-Finders--An Inexpensive Alternative to Scientific Echo-Sounders for Unravelling the Links between Marine Top Predators and Their Prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alistair M McInnes

    Full Text Available Studies investigating how mobile marine predators respond to their prey are limited due to the challenging nature of the environment. While marine top predators are increasingly easy to study thanks to developments in bio-logging technology, typically there is scant information on the distribution and abundance of their prey, largely due to the specialised nature of acquiring this information. We explore the potential of using single-beam recreational fish-finders (RFF to quantify relative forage fish abundance and draw inferences of the prey distribution at a fine spatial scale. We compared fish school characteristics as inferred from the RFF with that of a calibrated scientific split-beam echo-sounder (SES by simultaneously operating both systems from the same vessel in Algoa Bay, South Africa. Customized open-source software was developed to extract fish school information from the echo returns of the RFF. For schools insonified by both systems, there was close correspondence between estimates of mean school depth (R2 = 0.98 and school area (R2 = 0.70. Estimates of relative school density (mean volume backscattering strength; Sv measured by the RFF were negatively biased through saturation of this system given its smaller dynamic range. A correction factor applied to the RFF-derived density estimates improved the comparability between the two systems. Relative abundance estimates using all schools from both systems were congruent at scales from 0.5 km to 18 km with a strong positive linear trend in model fit estimates with increasing scale. Although absolute estimates of fish abundance cannot be derived from these systems, they are effective at describing prey school characteristics and have good potential for mapping forage fish distribution and relative abundance. Using such relatively inexpensive systems could greatly enhance our understanding of predator-prey interactions.

  12. Recreational Fish-Finders—An Inexpensive Alternative to Scientific Echo-Sounders for Unravelling the Links between Marine Top Predators and Their Prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    McInnes, Alistair M.; Khoosal, Arjun; Murrell, Ben; Merkle, Dagmar; Lacerda, Miguel; Nyengera, Reason; Coetzee, Janet C.; Edwards, Loyd C.; Ryan, Peter G.; Rademan, Johan; van der Westhuizen, Jan J; Pichegru, Lorien

    2015-01-01

    Studies investigating how mobile marine predators respond to their prey are limited due to the challenging nature of the environment. While marine top predators are increasingly easy to study thanks to developments in bio-logging technology, typically there is scant information on the distribution and abundance of their prey, largely due to the specialised nature of acquiring this information. We explore the potential of using single-beam recreational fish-finders (RFF) to quantify relative forage fish abundance and draw inferences of the prey distribution at a fine spatial scale. We compared fish school characteristics as inferred from the RFF with that of a calibrated scientific split-beam echo-sounder (SES) by simultaneously operating both systems from the same vessel in Algoa Bay, South Africa. Customized open-source software was developed to extract fish school information from the echo returns of the RFF. For schools insonified by both systems, there was close correspondence between estimates of mean school depth (R2 = 0.98) and school area (R2 = 0.70). Estimates of relative school density (mean volume backscattering strength; Sv) measured by the RFF were negatively biased through saturation of this system given its smaller dynamic range. A correction factor applied to the RFF-derived density estimates improved the comparability between the two systems. Relative abundance estimates using all schools from both systems were congruent at scales from 0.5 km to 18 km with a strong positive linear trend in model fit estimates with increasing scale. Although absolute estimates of fish abundance cannot be derived from these systems, they are effective at describing prey school characteristics and have good potential for mapping forage fish distribution and relative abundance. Using such relatively inexpensive systems could greatly enhance our understanding of predator-prey interactions. PMID:26600300

  13. Effects of 4-nonylphenol, fish predation and food availability on survival and life history traits of Daphnia magna straus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beklioglu, Meryem; Banu Akkas, S; Elif Ozcan, H; Bezirci, Gizem; Togan, Inci

    2010-06-01

    This study aimed to investigate the compound effect of environmentally relevant 4-nonylphenol (NP) concentrations and natural stressors-namely fish predation and food availability-on Daphnia magna, which were exposed to four NP concentrations (0, 1, 5 and 10 microg l(-1)) under optimum or low food concentrations (1.00 and 0.075 mg C l(-1), respectively) in water (un)conditioned by a fish predator (Alburnus alburnus). A(n) "environmentally relevant" and "no observable effect" concentration (NOEC) of NP (10 microg l(-1)) resulted in a significant reduction (P ecosystems. The deterioration of the life-history traits-namely, NP-induced delay in the age at first reproduction (P ecosystems. The results of this study demonstrate the importance of taking into account environmentally realistic conditions while investigating the effects of NOEC levels of toxicants on non-target aquatic species.

  14. Density-dependent interactions in an Arctic char - brown trout system: competition, predation, or both?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Persson, L.; Amundsen, P.A.; de Roos, A.M.; Knudsen, R.; Primicerio, R.; Klemetsen, A.

    2013-01-01

    In the study of mechanisms structuring fish communities, mixed competition-predation interactions where large predators feed on prey fish versus those in which small predators compete with prey fish for a shared prey have been the focus of substantial research. We used a long-term data set from a

  15. Mink predation on brown trout in a Black Hills stream

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Jacob L.; Wilhite, Jerry W.; Chipps, Steven R.

    2016-01-01

    In the early 2000’s, declines in the brown trout (Salmo trutta) fishery in Rapid Creek, South Dakota, caused concern for anglers and fisheries managers. We conducted a radio telemetry study in 2010 and 2011 to identify predation mortality associated with mink, using hatchery-reared (2010) or wild (2011) brown trout. Estimated predation rates by mink (Mustela vison) on radio-tagged brown trout were 30% for hatchery fish and 32% for wild fish. Size frequency analysis revealed that the size distribution of brown trout lost to predation was similar to that of other, radio-tagged brown trout. In both years, a higher proportion of predation mortality (83–92%) occurred during spring, consistent with seasonal fish consumption by mink. Predation by mink appeared to be a significant source of brown trout mortality in our study.

  16. Population genetics, ecogenomics and physiological mechanisms of adaptation of Daphnia to cyanobacteria

    OpenAIRE

    Küster, Christian

    2012-01-01

    In many freshwater ecosystems Daphnia represent both, an important herbivorous grazer of phytoplankton and a major prey of planktivorous fish and invertebrate predators. Thus, Daphnia provide an important link for the transfer of energy and carbon from primary producers to higher trophic levels. In eutrophic lakes this transfer is often reduced by the occurrence of cyanobacteria that are known for their low food quality for Daphnia: Cyanobacteria lack essential sterols and polyunsaturated fat...

  17. THE ABILITY OF FAST-GROWING TRANSGENIC AFRICAN CATFISH (Clarias gariepinus ON PREDATOR AVOIDANCE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huria Marnis

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Research Institute for Fish Breeding has produced transgenic African catfish (Clarias gariepinus containing stripped catfish growth hormone gene (PccBA-PhGH with growth 19.86% faster than that of non-transgenic fish. This fish has high potential to be released and utilized for fish farming sector to increase national production. However, there is not yet information about environmental risk of this fish. One of the major fitness traits determining potential environmental risk is predator avoidance. This study aimed to determine the predator avoidance ability of transgenic African catfish in an experimental laboratory condition. In this study, thirty five individuals each of transgenic and non-transgenic with body weight of about 0.1 ± 0.019 g were communally stocked in 60 cm x 40 cm x 40 cm aquarium with limited feeding frequency (ad libitum twice a day. One day after the fish were stocked, the predators were added to each aquarium. The non-transgenic and transgenic with body weight of 1.0 ± 0.024 g were stocked as predators as many as five individual in each aquarium. After approximately two weeks of predation, all remaining fish were collected for transgenic verification by PCR method. Genomic DNA was isolated from fin tissue of individually survivors. The results of this study showed that the transgenic fish had worse predator avoidance and lower cannibal than non-transgenic (P0.05 in limited food. The transgenic fish may have lower fitness than non-transgenic.

  18. A survey of dioxin-like contaminants in fish from recreational fishing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heimstad, Eldbjørg Sofie; Grønstøl, Gaute; Hetland, Karl Torstein; Alarcon, Javier Martinez; Rylander, Charlotta; Mariussen, Espen

    2015-08-01

    The dioxin and dioxin-like compounds are regarded as one of the most toxic group of environmental contaminants. Food for the commercial market is regularly monitored for their dioxin levels and the concentration allowed in food is strictly regulated. Less is known about locally caught fish from recreational fishing, which is often brought home for consumption. This can be fish caught from nearby lakes or streams or fish with marine origin close to industrial areas or harbours that are not regularly monitored for their dioxin levels. In this study, we established collaboration with schools in 13 countries. We received 203 samples of 29 different fish species of which Atlantic cod was the most abundant followed by brown trout and pollock. In general, the majority of samples from the participating countries had low concentrations (between 0.1 and 0.2 pg/g chemical-activated luciferase gene expression toxic equivalency wet weight (CALUX TEQ w.w.)) of dioxins and dioxin-like PCBs. Only 18 samples had concentrations above 1 pg/g CALUX TEQ w.w., and only 2 dab samples had concentration above maximum levels set by the European Commission. The Atlantic cod samples showed a significant reduction in the concentrations of dioxins with increasing latitude indicating less contamination of dioxin and dioxin-like compounds in the north of Norway. The results indicate that a moderate consumption of self-caught fish at presumed non-contaminated sites does not represent a major risk for exposure to dioxins or dioxin-like compounds at concentrations associated with adverse health effects. Recreational fishermen should, however, obtain knowledge about local fish consumption advice.

  19. Predator-induced morphological plasticity across local populations of a freshwater snail.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christer Brönmark

    Full Text Available The expression of anti-predator adaptations may vary on a spatial scale, favouring traits that are advantageous in a given predation regime. Besides, evolution of different developmental strategies depends to a large extent on the grain of the environment and may result in locally canalized adaptations or, alternatively, the evolution of phenotypic plasticity as different predation regimes may vary across habitats. We investigated the potential for predator-driven variability in shell morphology in a freshwater snail, Radix balthica, and whether found differences were a specialized ecotype adaptation or a result of phenotypic plasticity. Shell shape was quantified in snails from geographically separated pond populations with and without molluscivorous fish. Subsequently, in a common garden experiment we investigated reaction norms of snails from populations' with/without fish when exposed to chemical cues from tench (Tinca tinca, a molluscivorous fish. We found that snails from fish-free ponds had a narrow shell with a well developed spire, whereas snails that coexisted with fish had more rotund shells with a low spire, a shell morphology known to increase survival rate from shell-crushing predators. The common garden experiment mirrored the results from the field survey and showed that snails had similar reaction norms in response to chemical predator cues, i.e. the expression of shell shape was independent of population origin. Finally, we found significant differences for the trait means among populations, within each pond category (fish/fish free, suggesting a genetic component in the determination of shell morphology that has evolved independently across ponds.

  20. Trophic modeling of the Northern Humboldt Current Ecosystem, Part I: Comparing trophic linkages under La Niña and El Niño conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tam, Jorge; Taylor, Marc H.; Blaskovic, Verónica; Espinoza, Pepe; Michael Ballón, R.; Díaz, Erich; Wosnitza-Mendo, Claudia; Argüelles, Juan; Purca, Sara; Ayón, Patricia; Quipuzcoa, Luis; Gutiérrez, Dimitri; Goya, Elisa; Ochoa, Noemí; Wolff, Matthias

    2008-10-01

    The El Niño of 1997-98 was one of the strongest warming events of the past century; among many other effects, it impacted phytoplankton along the Peruvian coast by changing species composition and reducing biomass. While responses of the main fish resources to this natural perturbation are relatively well known, understanding the ecosystem response as a whole requires an ecotrophic multispecies approach. In this work, we construct trophic models of the Northern Humboldt Current Ecosystem (NHCE) and compare the La Niña (LN) years in 1995-96 with the El Niño (EN) years in 1997-98. The model area extends from 4°S-16°S and to 60 nm from the coast. The model consists of 32 functional groups of organisms and differs from previous trophic models of the Peruvian system through: (i) division of plankton into size classes to account for EN-associated changes and feeding preferences of small pelagic fish, (ii) increased division of demersal groups and separation of life history stages of hake, (iii) inclusion of mesopelagic fish, and (iv) incorporation of the jumbo squid ( Dosidicus gigas), which became abundant following EN. Results show that EN reduced the size and organization of energy flows of the NHCE, but the overall functioning (proportion of energy flows used for respiration, consumption by predators, detritus and export) of the ecosystem was maintained. The reduction of diatom biomass during EN forced omnivorous planktivorous fish to switch to a more zooplankton-dominated diet, raising their trophic level. Consequently, in the EN model the trophic level increased for several predatory groups (mackerel, other large pelagics, sea birds, pinnipeds) and for fishery catch. A high modeled biomass of macrozooplankton was needed to balance the consumption by planktivores, especially during EN condition when observed diatoms biomass diminished dramatically. Despite overall lower planktivorous fish catches, the higher primary production required-to-catch ratio implied a

  1. Non-specific manipulation of gammarid behaviour by P. minutus parasite enhances their predation by definitive bird hosts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacquin, Lisa; Mori, Quentin; Pause, Mickaël; Steffen, Mélanie; Medoc, Vincent

    2014-01-01

    Trophically-transmitted parasites often change the phenotype of their intermediate hosts in ways that increase their vulnerability to definitive hosts, hence favouring transmission. As a "collateral damage", manipulated hosts can also become easy prey for non-host predators that are dead ends for the parasite, and which are supposed to play no role in transmission strategies. Interestingly, infection with the acanthocephalan parasite Polymorphus minutus has been shown to reduce the vulnerability of its gammarid intermediate hosts to non-host predators, whose presence triggered the behavioural alterations expected to favour trophic transmission to bird definitive hosts. Whilst the behavioural response of infected gammarids to the presence of definitive hosts remains to be investigated, this suggests that trophic transmission might be promoted by non-host predation risk. We conducted microcosm experiments to test whether the behaviour of P. minutus-infected gammarids was specific to the type of predator (i.e. mallard as definitive host and fish as non-host), and mesocosm experiments to test whether trophic transmission to bird hosts was influenced by non-host predation risk. Based on the behaviours we investigated (predator avoidance, activity, geotaxis, conspecific attraction), we found no evidence for a specific fine-tuned response in infected gammarids, which behaved similarly whatever the type of predator (mallard or fish). During predation tests, fish predation risk did not influence the differential predation of mallards that over-consumed infected gammarids compared to uninfected individuals. Overall, our results bring support for a less sophisticated scenario of manipulation than previously expected, combining chronic behavioural alterations with phasic behavioural alterations triggered by the chemical and physical cues coming from any type of predator. Given the wide dispersal range of waterbirds (the definitive hosts of P. minutus), such a manipulation

  2. Hexabromocyclododecane (HBCDD) Flame Retardant in Top Predator Fish across Canada and its 36-Year Temporal Trends for Lake Ontario.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Guanyong; McGoldrick, Daryl; Clark, Mandi G; Evans, Marlene; Gledhill, Melissa; Garron, Christine; Armellin, Alain; Backus, Sean; Letcher, Robert J

    2018-05-08

    Hexabromocyclododecane (HBCDD) is a high concern environmental pollutant due to its persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic properties. The spatial distribution of HBCDD was investigated in top predator fish (Lake Trout, Walleye or Brook Trout) collected in 2013 (n=165) from nineteen sampling sites and in 2015 (n=145) from twenty sites across Canada. HBCDD was measurable in at least one sample at each sampling site regardless of sampling year with the exception of Walleye from the south basin of Lake Winnipeg (2013). Sampling sites in or near the Laurentian Great Lakes had greater HBCDD concentrations compared to locations to the west or east. The greatest mean HBCDD concentration was 72.6 ng/g lw in fish from Lake Huron-Goderich (2015). Regardless of the sampling sites, α-HBCDD was the dominant congener followed by γ-HBCDD, whereas β-HBCDD was barely detectable. In fish from the same waterbody there were comparable α/γ isomer concentration ratios. The greatest ratio was 20.8 in fish from Lake Ontario, whereas the lowest ratio was 6.3 for fish from Lac Memphrémagog (Québec) likely related to more recent emissions of technical HBCDD mixture. Temporal trends of HBCDD in Lake Trout from Lake Ontario showed a significant decreasing trend for γ-HBCDD with a half-life estimate of 10 years over a 36-year period (1979-2015), and for -HBCDD with a half-life of 11 years over the years of 2008 to 2015. The proportion of α-HBCDD to ΣHBCDD increased significantly during 1979 to 2015. The present study provided novel information on the isomer-specific HBCDDs in Canada freshwater fish.

  3. Cooperation under Predation Risk: Experiments on Costs and Benefits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milinski, Manfred; Luthi, Jean H.; Eggler, Rolf; Parker, Geoffrey A.

    1997-06-01

    Two fish that cooperatively inspect a predator may have negotiated the share of the risk that each takes. A test of both the costs of predator inspection dependent on the distance from which the predator is approached and the potential benefits of cooperation was carried out strictly experimentally. We made either singletons or pairs of dead sticklebacks, Gasterosteus aculeatus, approach hungry pike, Esox lucius, by remote control according to an algorithm that mimicked natural inspection. The predation risk of both single inspectors and parallel inspecting pairs increased with closer inspection distances. A member of an inspecting pair had only about half the risk of that of a single inspector. In pairs, a companion diluted the lead fish's risk of being caught, depending on its distance behind the leader. The absolute risk difference between leader and follower was greatest for close inspection distances and decreased further away from the predator. The leader's relative risk increased with its distance ahead of the laggard. However, for a given distance between leader and laggard, the relative risks to the two fish remained similar with distance from the predator. The cost side of the inequalities that define a 'Prisoner's Dilemma' has thus been measured for this system. In a second experiment the 'attack deterrence hypothesis' of predator inspection (i.e. inspection decreases attack probability) was tested. The pike was offered a choice between two sticklebacks, one of which had carried out a predator inspection visit. There was no indication of attack deterrence through predator inspection.

  4. High refuge availability on coral reefs increases the vulnerability of reef-associated predators to overexploitation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rogers, Alice; Blanchard, Julia L; Newman, Steven P; Dryden, Charlie S; Mumby, Peter J

    2018-02-01

    Refuge availability and fishing alter predator-prey interactions on coral reefs, but our understanding of how they interact to drive food web dynamics, community structure and vulnerability of different trophic groups is unclear. Here, we apply a size-based ecosystem model of coral reefs, parameterized with empirical measures of structural complexity, to predict fish biomass, productivity and community structure in reef ecosystems under a broad range of refuge availability and fishing regimes. In unfished ecosystems, the expected positive correlation between reef structural complexity and biomass emerges, but a non-linear effect of predation refuges is observed for the productivity of predatory fish. Reefs with intermediate complexity have the highest predator productivity, but when refuge availability is high and prey are less available, predator growth rates decrease, with significant implications for fisheries. Specifically, as fishing intensity increases, predators in habitats with high refuge availability exhibit vulnerability to over-exploitation, resulting in communities dominated by herbivores. Our study reveals mechanisms for threshold dynamics in predators living in complex habitats and elucidates how predators can be food-limited when most of their prey are able to hide. We also highlight the importance of nutrient recycling via the detrital pathway, to support high predator biomasses on coral reefs. © 2018 by the Ecological Society of America.

  5. Lévy night flights by the jellyfish Periphylla periphylla

    KAUST Repository

    Ugland, KI; Aksnes, DL; Klevjer, TA; Titelman, J; Kaartvedt, Stein

    2014-01-01

    Jellyfish blooms occur in marine environments around the world and have been linked to over-fishing, eutrophication and climatic change. In some coastal areas of Norway, the circumglobal Periphylla periphylla has increased to exceptionally high abundances and has replaced fish as the main planktivorous predator despite the ineffectiveness of its non-visual predation compared to visual fish predation. Using data from a bottom-mounted acoustic platform, we collected 12341 in situ measurements of individual vertical movements of large individuals of P. periphylla. These jellyfish are characterized by a stepwise vertical movement. The distribution of their vertical swimming distances was extremely left skewed; about 85% of the swimming distances were less than 3 m, and a few displacements were extremely long with a maximum of 85 m. Chi-square tests of goodness of fit to the tail and Akaike’s information criterion gave overwhelming evidence of the truncated power law. There was a clear diel pattern in the exponent with values significantly larger than 3 during the daytime and significantly lower than 3 at night. This pattern means that P. periphylla switches from relatively limited movements during the day to Lévy-like flights during the night. Since the abundance of zooplankton is large in the P. periphylla fjord, Brownian motion, rather than Lévy flight, is predicted by the optimal foraging hypothesis. It is therefore possible that the Lévy-like search pattern has evolved in the food-scarce oceanic environment, which is the main natural habitat of P. periphylla. Alternatively, the large individuals of the population addressed here may forage on scarcer prey sources than the main prevailing zooplankton in Lurefjorden.

  6. Lévy night flights by the jellyfish Periphylla periphylla

    KAUST Repository

    Ugland, KI

    2014-10-22

    Jellyfish blooms occur in marine environments around the world and have been linked to over-fishing, eutrophication and climatic change. In some coastal areas of Norway, the circumglobal Periphylla periphylla has increased to exceptionally high abundances and has replaced fish as the main planktivorous predator despite the ineffectiveness of its non-visual predation compared to visual fish predation. Using data from a bottom-mounted acoustic platform, we collected 12341 in situ measurements of individual vertical movements of large individuals of P. periphylla. These jellyfish are characterized by a stepwise vertical movement. The distribution of their vertical swimming distances was extremely left skewed; about 85% of the swimming distances were less than 3 m, and a few displacements were extremely long with a maximum of 85 m. Chi-square tests of goodness of fit to the tail and Akaike’s information criterion gave overwhelming evidence of the truncated power law. There was a clear diel pattern in the exponent with values significantly larger than 3 during the daytime and significantly lower than 3 at night. This pattern means that P. periphylla switches from relatively limited movements during the day to Lévy-like flights during the night. Since the abundance of zooplankton is large in the P. periphylla fjord, Brownian motion, rather than Lévy flight, is predicted by the optimal foraging hypothesis. It is therefore possible that the Lévy-like search pattern has evolved in the food-scarce oceanic environment, which is the main natural habitat of P. periphylla. Alternatively, the large individuals of the population addressed here may forage on scarcer prey sources than the main prevailing zooplankton in Lurefjorden.

  7. Prey life-history and bioenergetic responses across a predation gradient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rennie, M D; Purchase, C F; Shuter, B J; Collins, N C; Abrams, P A; Morgan, G E

    2010-10-01

    To evaluate the importance of non-consumptive effects of predators on prey life histories under natural conditions, an index of predator abundance was developed for naturally occurring populations of a common prey fish, the yellow perch Perca flavescens, and compared to life-history variables and rates of prey energy acquisition and allocation as estimated from mass balance models. The predation index was positively related to maximum size and size at maturity in both male and female P. flavescens, but not with life span or reproductive investment. The predation index was positively related to size-adjusted specific growth rates and growth efficiencies but negatively related to model estimates of size-adjusted specific consumption and activity rates in both vulnerable (small) and invulnerable (large) size classes of P. flavescens. These observations suggest a trade-off between growth and activity rates, mediated by reduced activity in response to increasing predator densities. Lower growth rates and growth efficiencies in populations with fewer predators, despite increased consumption suggests either 1) a reduction in prey resources at lower predator densities or 2) an intrinsic cost of rapid prey growth that makes it unfavourable unless offset by a perceived threat of predation. This study provides evidence of trade-offs between growth and activity rates induced by predation risk in natural prey fish populations and illustrates how behavioural modification induced through predation can shape the life histories of prey fish species. © 2010 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2010 The Fisheries Society of the British Isles.

  8. Instream cover and shade mediate avian predation on trout in semi-natural streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Penaluna, Brooke E.; Dunham, Jason B.; Noakes, David L. G.

    2015-01-01

    Piscivory by birds can be significant, particularly on fish in small streams and during seasonal low flow when available cover from predators can be limited. Yet, how varying amounts of cover may change the extent of predation mortality from avian predators on fish is not clear. We evaluated size-selective survival of coastal cutthroat trout (Oncorhynchus clarkii clarkii) in replicated semi-natural stream sections. These sections provided high (0.01 m2 of cover per m2 of stream) or low (0.002 m2 of cover per m2 of stream) levels of instream cover available to trout and were closed to emigration. Each fish was individually tagged, allowing us to track retention of individuals during the course of the 36-day experiment, which we attributed to survival from predators, because fish had no other way to leave the streams. Although other avian predators may have been active in our system and not detected, the only predator observed was the belted kingfisher Megaceryle alcyon, which is known to prey heavily on fish. In both treatments, trout >20.4 cm were not preyed upon indicating an increased ability to prey upon on smaller individuals. Increased availability of cover improved survival of trout by 12% in high relative to low cover stream sections. Trout also survived better in stream sections with greater shade, a factor we could not control in our system. Collectively, these findings indicate that instream cover and shade from avian predators can play an important role in driving survival of fish in small streams or during periods of low flow.

  9. Mercury accumulation in marine fish most favoured by Malaysian women, the predictors and the potential health risk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeevanaraj, Pravina; Hashim, Zailina; Elias, Saliza Mohd; Aris, Ahmad Zaharin

    2016-12-01

    We identified marine fish species most preferred by women at reproductive age in Selangor, Malaysia, mercury concentrations in the fish muscles, factors predicting mercury accumulation and the potential health risk. Nineteen most preferred marine fish species were purchased (n = 175) from selected fisherman's and wholesale market. Length, weight, habitat, feeding habit and trophic level were recognised. Edible muscles were filleted, dried at 80 °C, ground on an agate mortar and digested in Multiwave 3000 using HNO 3 and H 2 O 2 . Total mercury was quantified using VP90 cold vapour system with N 2 carrier gas. Certified reference material DORM-4 was used to validate the results. Fish species were classified as demersal (7) and pelagic (12) or predators (11), zoo benthos (6) and planktivorous (2). Length, weight and trophic level ranged from 10.5 to 75.0 cm, 0.01 to 2.50 kg and 2.5 to 4.5, respectively. Geometric mean of total mercury ranged from 0.21 to 0.50 mg/kg; maximum in golden snapper (0.90 mg/kg). Only 9 % of the samples exceeded the JECFA recommendation. Multiple linear regression found demersal, high trophic (≥4.0) and heavier fishes to accumulate more mercury in muscles (R 2  = 27.3 %), controlling for all other factors. About 47 % of the fish samples contributed to mercury intake above the provisional tolerable level (45 μg/day). While only a small portion exceeded the JECFA fish Hg guideline, the concentration reported may be alarming for heavy consumers. Attention should be given in risk management to avoid demersal and high trophic fish, predominantly heavier ones.

  10. Assessing fish predation on migrating juvenile steelhead and a retrospective comparison to steelhead survival through the Priest Rapids Hydroelectric Project, Columbia River, Washington, 2009-11

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hardiman, Jill M.; Counihan, Timothy D.; Burgess, Dave S.; Simmons, Katrina E.; Holmberg, Glen S.; Rogala, Josh; Polacek, Rochelle

    2012-01-01

    The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) have been working with the Public Utility District No. 2 of Grant County, Washington (Grant PUD), to increase their understanding of predator-prey interactions in the Priest Rapids Hydroelectric Project (PRP), Columbia River, Washington. For this study, the PRP is defined as the area approximately 6 kilometers upstream of Wanapum Dam to the Priest Rapids Dam tailrace, 397.1 miles from the mouth of the Columbia River. Past year’s low survival numbers of juvenile steelhead (Oncorhynchus mykiss) through Wanapum and Priest Rapids Dams has prompted Grant PUD, on behalf of the Priest Rapids Coordinating Committee, to focus research efforts on steelhead migration and potential causal mechanisms for low survival. Steelhead passage survival in 2009 was estimated at 0.944 through the Wanapum Development (dam and reservoir) and 0.881 through the Priest Rapids Development and for 2010, steelhead survival was 0.855 for Wanapum Development and 0.904 for Priest Rapids Development. The USGS and WDFW implemented field collection efforts in 2011 for northern pikeminnow (Ptychocheilus oregonensis), smallmouth bass (Micropterus dolomieu), and walleye (Sander vitreus, formerly Stizostedion vitreum) and their diets in the PRP. For predator indexing, we collected 948 northern pikeminnow, 237 smallmouth bass, 18 walleye, and two largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides). The intent of this study was to provide standardized predation indices within individual reaches of the PRP to discern spatial variability in predation patterns. Furthermore, the results of the 2011 study were compared to results of a concurrent steelhead survival study. Our results do not indicate excessively high predation of Oncorhynchus spp. occurring by northern pikeminnow or smallmouth bass in any particular reach throughout the study area. Although we found Oncorhynchus spp. in the predator diets, the relative

  11. Hydrological disturbance diminishes predator control in wetlands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dorn, Nathan J; Cook, Mark I

    2015-11-01

    Effects of predators on prey populations can be especially strong in aquatic ecosystems, but disturbances may mediate the strength of predator limitation and even allow outbreaks of some prey populations. In a two-year study we investigated the numerical responses of crayfish (Procambarus fallax) and small fishes (Poeciliidae and Fundulidae) to a brief hydrological disturbance in replicated freshwater wetlands with an experimental drying and large predatory fish reduction. The experiment and an in situ predation assay tested the component of the consumer stress model positing that disturbances release prey from predator limitation. In the disturbed wetlands, abundances of large predatory fish were seasonally reduced, similar to dynamics in the Everglades (southern Florida). Densities of small fish were unaffected by the disturbance, but crayfish densities, which were similar across all wetlands before drying, increased almost threefold in the year after the disturbance. Upon re-flooding, juvenile crayfish survival was inversely related to the abundance of large fish across wetlands, but we found no evidence for enhanced algal food quality. At a larger landscape scale (500 km2 of the Everglades), crayfish densities over eight years were positively correlated with the severity of local dry disturbances (up to 99 days dry) during the preceding dry season. In contrast, densities of small-bodied fishes in the same wetlands were seasonally depressed by dry disturbances. The results from our experimental wetland drought and the observations of crayfish densities in the Everglades represent a large-scale example of prey population release following a hydrological disturbance in a freshwater ecosystem. The conditions producing crayfish pulses in the Everglades appear consistent with the mechanics of the consumer stress model, and we suggest crayfish pulses may influence the number of nesting wading birds in the Everglades.

  12. Predators shape distribution and promote diversification of morphological defenses in Leucorrhinia , Odonata

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrin, Zlatko; Schilling, Emily Gaenzle; Loftin, Cyndy; Johansson, Frank

    2010-01-01

    Predators strongly influence species assemblages and shape morphological defenses of prey. Interestingly, adaptations that constitute effective defenses against one type of predator may render the prey susceptible to other types of predators. Hence, prey may evolve different strategies to escape predation, which may facilitate adaptive radiation of prey organisms. Larvae of different species in the dragonfly genus Leucorrhinia have various morphological defenses. We studied the distribution of these larvae in relation to the presence of predatory fish. In addition, we examined the variation in morphological defenses within species with respect to the occurrence of fish. We found that well-defended species, those with more and longer spines, were more closely associated with habitats inhabited by predatory fish and that species with weakly developed morphological defenses were more abundant in habitats without fish. The species predominantly connected to lakes with or without fish, respectively, were not restricted to a single clade in the phylogeny of the genus. Our data is suggestive of phenotypic plasticity in morphological defense in three of the studied species since these species showed longer spines in lakes with fish. We suggest that adaptive phenotypic plasticity may have broadened the range of habitats accessible to Leucorrhinia. It may have facilitated colonization of new habitats with different types of predators, and ultimately, speciation through adaptive radiation.

  13. Species Diversity Enhances Predator Growth Rates

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Olson, M.H.; Jacobs, R.P.; O'Donnell, E.B.

    2007-01-01

    Predators can be important top-down regulators of community structure and are known to have both positive and negative effects on species diversity. However, little is known about the reciprocal effects of species diversity on predators. Across a set of 80 lakes in Connecticut, USA, we found a strong positive correlation between prey species diversity (using the Shannon-Weiner Diversity Index) and growth rates of largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides). This correlation was strongest for small predators and decreased with body size. Although the underlying mechanisms are not known, the correlation is not driven by total fish abundance, predator abundance, or productivity.

  14. Non-specific manipulation of gammarid behaviour by P. minutus parasite enhances their predation by definitive bird hosts.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lisa Jacquin

    Full Text Available Trophically-transmitted parasites often change the phenotype of their intermediate hosts in ways that increase their vulnerability to definitive hosts, hence favouring transmission. As a "collateral damage", manipulated hosts can also become easy prey for non-host predators that are dead ends for the parasite, and which are supposed to play no role in transmission strategies. Interestingly, infection with the acanthocephalan parasite Polymorphus minutus has been shown to reduce the vulnerability of its gammarid intermediate hosts to non-host predators, whose presence triggered the behavioural alterations expected to favour trophic transmission to bird definitive hosts. Whilst the behavioural response of infected gammarids to the presence of definitive hosts remains to be investigated, this suggests that trophic transmission might be promoted by non-host predation risk. We conducted microcosm experiments to test whether the behaviour of P. minutus-infected gammarids was specific to the type of predator (i.e. mallard as definitive host and fish as non-host, and mesocosm experiments to test whether trophic transmission to bird hosts was influenced by non-host predation risk. Based on the behaviours we investigated (predator avoidance, activity, geotaxis, conspecific attraction, we found no evidence for a specific fine-tuned response in infected gammarids, which behaved similarly whatever the type of predator (mallard or fish. During predation tests, fish predation risk did not influence the differential predation of mallards that over-consumed infected gammarids compared to uninfected individuals. Overall, our results bring support for a less sophisticated scenario of manipulation than previously expected, combining chronic behavioural alterations with phasic behavioural alterations triggered by the chemical and physical cues coming from any type of predator. Given the wide dispersal range of waterbirds (the definitive hosts of P. minutus, such a

  15. The effect of turbidity on recognition and generalization of predators and non-predators in aquatic ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chivers, Douglas P; Al-Batati, Fawaz; Brown, Grant E; Ferrari, Maud C O

    2013-02-01

    Recent anthropogenic activities have caused a considerable change in the turbidity of freshwater and marine ecosystems. Concomitant with such perturbations are changes in community composition. Understanding the mechanisms through which species interactions are influenced by anthropogenic change has come to the forefront of many ecological disciplines. Here, we examine how a change in the availability of visual information influences the behavior of prey fish exposed to potential predators and non-predators. When fathead minnows, Pimephales promelas, were conditioned to recognize predators and non-predators in clear water, they showed a highly sophisticated ability to distinguish predators from non-predators. However, when learning occurred under conditions of increased turbidity, the ability of the prey to learn and generalize recognition of predators and non-predators was severely impaired. Our work highlights that changes at the community level associated with anthropogenic perturbations may be mediated through altered trophic interactions, and highlights the need to closely examine behavioral interactions to understand how species interactions change.

  16. The effect of turbidity on recognition and generalization of predators and non-predators in aquatic ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chivers, Douglas P; Al-Batati, Fawaz; Brown, Grant E; Ferrari, Maud C O

    2013-01-01

    Recent anthropogenic activities have caused a considerable change in the turbidity of freshwater and marine ecosystems. Concomitant with such perturbations are changes in community composition. Understanding the mechanisms through which species interactions are influenced by anthropogenic change has come to the forefront of many ecological disciplines. Here, we examine how a change in the availability of visual information influences the behavior of prey fish exposed to potential predators and non-predators. When fathead minnows, Pimephales promelas, were conditioned to recognize predators and non-predators in clear water, they showed a highly sophisticated ability to distinguish predators from non-predators. However, when learning occurred under conditions of increased turbidity, the ability of the prey to learn and generalize recognition of predators and non-predators was severely impaired. Our work highlights that changes at the community level associated with anthropogenic perturbations may be mediated through altered trophic interactions, and highlights the need to closely examine behavioral interactions to understand how species interactions change. PMID:23467451

  17. Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs) in Predator and Bottom-Feeding Fish from Abiquiu and Cochiti Reservoirs in North-Central New Mexico

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    G.J. Gonzales, P.R. Fresquez

    2006-03-01

    ({mu} = 4.25 ng/g-fillet-wet) than predator fish (walleye, northern pike, bass) ({mu} = 1.67 ng/g) and the bottom-feeding fish had levels of PCBs that fall into a restricted consumption category in U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) charts. Similarly, bottom-feeding fish from Abiquiu Reservoir also contained statistically higher levels of total PCBs ({mu} = 4.25 ng/g-wet) than predator fish (walleye, bass) ({mu} = 0.68 ng/g-wet) and only the bottom-feeding fish had levels of PCBs that fall into a restricted consumption category in the EPA charts.

  18. Fishing destabilizes the biomass flow in the marine size spectrum

    OpenAIRE

    Rochet, M.-J.; Benoît, E.

    2011-01-01

    Fishing impacts on marine food webs are predicted by simulations of a size spectrum community model. In this model, predation is determined by predator and prey size and abundance, and drives predator growth and prey mortality. Fishing amplifies temporal oscillations in the biomass flow. Oscillations appear at lower fishing intensity and have wider amplitude when fishing is selective (removes a narrow size range) and/or when large fish are targeted, than when fishing is more balanced (catchin...

  19. Internal wave-mediated shading causes frequent vertical migrations in fishes

    KAUST Repository

    Kaartvedt, Stein

    2012-04-25

    We provide evidence that internal waves cause frequent vertical migrations (FVM) in fishes. Acoustic data from the Benguela Current revealed that pelagic scattering layers of fish below ~140 m moved in opposite phases to internal waves, ascending ~20 m towards the wave trough and descending from the wave crest. At the trough, the downward displacement of upper waters and the upward migration of fish created an overlapping zone. Near-bottom fish correspondingly left the benthic boundary zone at the wave trough, ascending into an acoustic scattering layer likely consisting of zooplankton and then descending to the benthic boundary zone at the wave crest. We suggest that this vertical fish migration is a response to fluctuations in light intensity of 3 to 4 orders of magnitude caused by shading from a turbid surface layer that had chlorophyll a values of 3 to 4 mg m−3 and varied in thickness from ~15 to 50 m at a temporal scale corresponding to the internal wave period (30 min). This migration frequency thus is much higher than that of the common and widespread light-associated diel vertical migration. Vertical movements affect prey encounters, growth, and survival. We hypothesize that FVM increase the likelihood of prey encounters and the time for safe visual foraging among planktivorous fish, thereby contributing to efficient trophic transfer in major upwelling areas.

  20. Fortune favours the bold: a higher predator reduces the impact of a native but not an invasive intermediate predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrios-O'Neill, Daniel; Dick, Jaimie T A; Emmerson, Mark C; Ricciardi, Anthony; MacIsaac, Hugh J; Alexander, Mhairi E; Bovy, Helene C

    2014-05-01

    Emergent multiple predator effects (MPEs) might radically alter predictions of predatory impact that are based solely on the impact of individuals. In the context of biological invasions, determining if and how the individual-level impacts of invasive predators relates to their impacts in multiple-individual situations will inform understanding of how such impacts might propagate through recipient communities. Here, we use functional responses (the relationship between prey consumption rate and prey density) to compare the impacts of the invasive freshwater mysid crustacean Hemimysis anomala with a native counterpart Mysis salemaai when feeding on basal cladoceran prey (i) as individuals, (ii) in conspecific groups and (iii) in conspecific groups in the presence of a higher fish predator, Gasterosteus aculeatus. In the absence of the higher predator, the invader consumed significantly more basal prey than the native, and consumption was additive for both mysid species - that is, group consumption was predictable from individual-level consumption. Invaders and natives were themselves equally susceptible to predation when feeding with the higher fish predator, but an MPE occurred only between the natives and higher predator, where consumption of basal prey was significantly reduced. In contrast, consumption by the invaders and higher predator remained additive. The presence of a higher predator serves to exacerbate the existing difference in individual-level consumption between invasive and native mysids. We attribute the mechanism responsible for the MPE associated with the native to a trait-mediated indirect interaction, and further suggest that the relative indifference to predator threat on the part of the invader contributes to its success and impacts within invaded communities. © 2013 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2013 British Ecological Society.

  1. Impacts of species introductions on the health of fish communities receiving chronic radionuclide inputs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yankovich, T.L.; Casselman, J.M.; Cornett, R.J.J.

    2004-01-01

    There is widespread interest in gaining further understanding of the relative influences of multiple stressors on aquatic ecosystem structure and function. To address this, work has been done to evaluate the effects of the introduction of an efficient predator (northern pike) on a fish community in a small lake (Perch Lake, Chalk River, Ontario) receiving chronic inputs of radionuclides over a 50-year period. In general, large changes in fish community structure, with corresponding changes in fish health, occurred following the pike introduction. For example, several forage fish species were extirpated from the lake and densities of the past top predator, yellow perch, became greatly reduced, likely due to predation by northern pike and/or other species in the lake. The reduced perch numbers appeared to alleviate an ecological bottleneck, which resulted in significant increases in brown bullhead densities to levels that were much higher than observed in other water bodies under typical conditions. Corresponding changes in the health of the Perch Lake fish community could also be detected, and included decreased fish diversity, shifts in fish community size structure to smaller body sizes, significant reductions in fish condition factors, reduced hepato-somatic indices, depletion of fish internal fat reserves, hardening of the gastrointestinal tract, resorption of gonadal material, degradation of muscle tissue, emaciation and ultimately, mortality of northern pike and brown bullheads. Evaluation of data indicated that female fishes responded more quickly than did males in terms of condition loss, likely due to their higher energetic requirements. In addition, although pike and bullheads were detrimentally affected by the pike introduction, health of forage fish species, such as pumpkinseeds, did not appear to be greatly influenced. No clear relationships existed between fish community health and exposure to radionuclides in the lake. (author)

  2. Effects of habitat features on size-biased predation on salmon by bears.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andersson, Luke C; Reynolds, John D

    2017-05-01

    Predators can drive trait divergence among populations of prey by imposing differential selection on prey traits. Habitat characteristics can mediate predator selectivity by providing refuge for prey. We quantified the effects of stream characteristics on biases in the sizes of spawning salmon caught by bears (Ursus arctos and U. americanus) on the central coast of British Columbia, Canada by measuring size-biased predation on spawning chum (Oncorhynchus keta) and pink (O. gorbuscha) salmon in 12 streams with varying habitat characteristics. We tested the hypotheses that bears would catch larger than average salmon (size-biased predation) and that this bias toward larger fish would be higher in streams that provide less protection to spawning salmon from predation (e.g., less pools, wood, undercut banks). We then we tested for how such size biases in turn translate into differences among populations in the sizes of the fish. Bears caught larger-than-average salmon as the spawning season progressed and as predicted, this was most pronounced in streams with fewer refugia for the fish (i.e., wood and undercut banks). Salmon were marginally smaller in streams with more pronounced size-biased predation but this predictor was less reliable than physical characteristics of streams, with larger fish in wider, deeper streams. These results support the hypothesis that selective forces imposed by predators can be mediated by habitat characteristics, with potential consequences for physical traits of prey.

  3. Lake Pend Oreille Predation Research, Annual Report 2002-2003.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bassista, Thomas

    2004-02-01

    During August 2002 we conducted a hydroacoustic survey to enumerate pelagic fish >406 mm in Lake Pend Oreille, Idaho. The purpose of this survey was to determine a collective lakewide biomass estimate of pelagic bull trout Salvelinus confluentus, rainbow trout Oncorhynchus mykiss, and lake trout S. namaycush and compare it to pelagic prey (kokanee salmon O. nerka) biomass. By developing hydroacoustic techniques to determine the pelagic predator to prey ratio, we can annually monitor their balance. Hydroacoustic surveys were also performed during December 2002 and February 2003 to investigate the effectiveness of autumn and winter surveys for pelagic predators. The inherent problem associated with hydroacoustic sampling is the inability to directly identify fish species. Therefore, we utilized sonic tracking techniques to describe rainbow trout and lake trout habitat use during our winter hydroacoustic survey to help identify fish targets from the hydroacoustic echograms. During August 2002 we estimated there were 39,044 pelagic fish >406 mm in Lake Pend Oreille (1.84 f/ha). Based on temperature and depth utilization, two distinct groups of pelagic fish >406 mm were located during August; one group was located between 10 and 35 m and the other between 40 and 70 m. The biomass for pelagic fish >406 mm during August 2002 was 73 t (metric ton). This would account for a ratio of 1 kg of pelagic predator for every 2.63 kg of kokanee prey, assuming all pelagic fish >406 mm are predators. During our late fall and winter hydroacoustic surveys, pelagic fish >406 mm were observed at lake depths between 20 and 90 m. During late fall and winter, we tracked three rainbow trout (168 habitat observations) and found that they mostly occupied pelagic areas and predominantly stayed within the top 10 m of the water column. During late fall (one lake trout) and winter (four lake trout), we found that lake trout (184 habitat observations) utilized benthic-nearshore areas 65% of the time

  4. Predator-induced changes of female mating preferences: innate and experiential effects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Indy Jeane

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In many species males face a higher predation risk than females because males display elaborate traits that evolved under sexual selection, which may attract not only females but also predators. Females are, therefore, predicted to avoid such conspicuous males under predation risk. The present study was designed to investigate predator-induced changes of female mating preferences in Atlantic mollies (Poecilia mexicana. Males of this species show a pronounced polymorphism in body size and coloration, and females prefer large, colorful males in the absence of predators. Results In dichotomous choice tests predator-naïve (lab-reared females altered their initial preference for larger males in the presence of the cichlid Cichlasoma salvini, a natural predator of P. mexicana, and preferred small males instead. This effect was considerably weaker when females were confronted visually with the non-piscivorous cichlid Vieja bifasciata or the introduced non-piscivorous Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus. In contrast, predator experienced (wild-caught females did not respond to the same extent to the presence of a predator, most likely due to a learned ability to evaluate their predators' motivation to prey. Conclusions Our study highlights that (a predatory fish can have a profound influence on the expression of mating preferences of their prey (thus potentially affecting the strength of sexual selection, and females may alter their mate choice behavior strategically to reduce their own exposure to predators. (b Prey species can evolve visual predator recognition mechanisms and alter their mate choice only when a natural predator is present. (c Finally, experiential effects can play an important role, and prey species may learn to evaluate the motivational state of their predators.

  5. A predation cost to bold fish in the wild

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hulthén, Kaj; Chapman, Ben; Nilsson, Anders P.

    2017-01-01

    in the animal kingdom. Theory predicts that individual behavioural types differ in a cost-benefit trade-off where bolder individuals benefit from greater access to resources while paying higher predation-risk costs. However, explicitly linking predation events to individual behaviour under natural conditions...

  6. Fish Lymphocytes: An Evolutionary Equivalent of Mammalian Innate-Like Lymphocytes?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giuseppe Scapigliati

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Lymphocytes are the responsible of adaptive responses, as they are classically described, but evidence shows that subpopulations of mammalian lymphocytes may behave as innate-like cells, engaging non-self rapidly and without antigen presentation. The innate-like lymphocytes of mammals have been mainly identified as γδT cells and B1-B cells, exert their activities principally in mucosal tissues, may be involved in human pathologies and their functions and tissue(s of origin are not fully understood. Due to similarities in the morphology and immunobiology of immune system between fish and mammals, and to the uniqueness of having free-living larval stages where the development can be precisely monitored and engineered, teleost fish are proposed as an experimental model to investigate human immunity. However, the homology between fish lymphocytes and mammalian innate-like lymphocytes is an issue poorly considered in comparative immunology. Increasing experimental evidence suggests that fish lymphocytes could have developmental, morphological, and functional features in common with innate-like lymphocytes of mammals. Despite such similarities, information on possible links between conventional fish lymphocytes and mammalian innate-like lymphocytes is missing. The aim of this review is to summarize and describe available findings about the similarities between fish lymphocytes and mammalian innate-like lymphocytes, supporting the hypothesis that mammalian γδT cells and B1-B cells could be evolutionarily related to fish lymphocytes.

  7. Biomanipulation - a tool in marine ecosystem management and restoration?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lindegren, Martin; Möllmann, Christian; Hansson, Lars-Anders

    2010-01-01

    Widespread losses of production and conservation values make large-scale ecosystem restoration increasingly urgent. Ecological restoration by means of biomanipulation, i.e., by fishing out planktivores as to reduce the predation pressure on herbivorous zooplankton, has proven an effective tool...... in restoring degraded lakes and coastal ecosystems. Whether biomanipulation may prove a useful restoration method in open and structurally complex marine ecosystems is however still unknown. To promote a recovery of the collapsed stock of Eastern Baltic cod (Gadus morhua), large-scale biomanipulation of sprat...

  8. The shallow-water fish assemblage of Isla del Coco National Park, Costa Rica: structure and patterns in an isolated, predator-dominated ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alan M. Friedlander

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Fishes at Isla del Coco National Park, Costa Rica, were surveyed as part of a larger scientific expedition to the area in September 2009. The average total biomass of nearshore fishes was 7.8 tonnes per ha, among the largest observed in the tropics, with apex predators such as sharks, jacks, and groupers accounting for nearly 40% of the total biomass. The abundance of reef and pelagic sharks, particularly large aggregations of threatened species such as the scalloped hammerhead shark (up to 42 hammerheads ha-1 and large schools of jacks and snappers show the capacity for high biomass in unfished ecosystems in the Eastern Tropical Pacific. However, the abundance of hammerhead and reef whitetip sharks appears to have been declining since the late 1990s, and likely causes may include increasing fishing pressure on sharks in the region and illegal fishing inside the Park. One Galapagos shark tagged on September 20, 2009 in the Isla del Coco National Park moved 255km southeast towards Malpelo Island in Colombia, when it stopped transmitting. These results contribute to the evidence that sharks conduct large-scale movements between marine protected areas (Isla del Coco, Malpelo, Galápagos in the Eastern tropical Pacific and emphasize the need for regional-scale management. More than half of the species and 90% of the individuals observed were endemic to the tropical eastern Pacific. These high biomass and endemicity values highlight the uniqueness of the fish assemblage at Isla del Coco and its importance as a global biodiversity hotspot.

  9. Ciguatoxin-like substances in edible fish on the eastern Mediterranean.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bentur, Yedidia; Spanier, Ehud

    2007-09-01

    The consumption of edible fish (e.g., Siganus spp) was assumed to have caused ciguatera poisoning at an atypical site, the eastern Mediterranean. This pilot study assesses the presence of ciguatoxin-like substances in edible fish on the eastern Mediterranean coast of Israel. Samples of Siganus rivulatus from polluted seawater (Haifa Bay), Siganus rivulatus from relatively clean seawater (Dor), and fish from the freshwater Sea of Galilee not inhabited by toxic algae were analyzed during summertime. Ciguatoxin-like substances were tested by a membrane immunobead assay that yields a color reaction (positive, weakly positive, negative). Significantly more large and small fish from Haifa Bay yielded positive color reactions compared to fish from Dor. Sea of Galilee fish gave no positive color reactions. Our results suggest the presence of ciguatoxin-like substances in edible fish of the eastern Mediterranean. Additional analyses are needed to determine whether these substances are ciguatoxins or related polyethers.

  10. Mercury bio magnification in the Atlantic spotted dolphin (Stenella frontalis) food chain, using nitrogen stable isotope as an ecological tracer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kehrig, Helena A; Baptista, Gilberto; Di Beneditto, Ana Paula M; Almeida, Marcelo G; Rezende, Carlos E; Siciliano, Salvatore; De Moura, Jailson F; Moreira, Isabel

    2017-01-01

    An assessment of mercury (Hg) concentrations and nitrogen stable isotope (δ"1"5N) was conducted in the food chain of the Atlantic spotted dolphin (Stenella frontalis), including phytoplankton, zooplankton, planktivorous fish and its major prey (predatory fish and a single species of cephalopod), that compose a tropical trophic chain of the Brazilian southeastern coast. Tissue concentrations of Hg in a voracious predator fish, the largehead hairtail (Trichiurus lepturus), one of the dolphin's prey, were 9.8 times lower than median concentrations found in dolphin tissues. δ"1"5N values in predatory fish were found to be lower to those of its predator the spotted dolphin. Isotopic data suggested significant differences for ? 15N along the trophic chain, with the top predator (dolphin) exhibiting heavier value, followed by the voracious predator fish and the benthonic carnivorous fish, the whitemouth croaker (Micropogonias furnieri). Phytoplankton displayed the lightest δ"1"5N, followed by zooplankton and the planktophagous fish, the lebranche mullet (Mugil liza). This fish species and the cephalopod showed the lowest median Hg concentration. All links of the entire trophic chain presented trophic transfer of Hg with a biomagnification factor higher than 1. A significant relationship was found between the log Hg concentration and trophic level (TL) of all evaluated species, with a positive slope (β= 0.87). The calculated trophic magnification factor (TMF7.44) indicates that Hg concentration increased per TL, and also that the entire coastal food chain from the South Atlantic Ocean presented a biomagnification power of Hg within a range previously reported for tropical coastal ecosystems. Key words: Marine mammal, coastal aquatic biota, toxic element, biotransference, ecological tracer

  11. Spatio-temporal distribution of Diaphanosoma brachyurum (Cladocera: Sididae in freshwater reservoir ecosystems: importance of maximum water depth and macrophyte beds for avoidance of fish predation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jong-Yun Choi

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available In empirical studies, Cladocera is commonly utilized as a primary food source for predators such as fish, thus, predator avoidance are important strategies to sustain their population in freshwater ecosystems. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that water depth is an important factor in determining the spatial distribution of Diaphanosoma brachyurum Liévin, 1848 in response to fish predation. Quarterly monitoring was implemented at three water layers (i.e., water surface and middle and bottom layers in 21 reservoirs located in the southeastern part of South Korea. D. brachyurum individuals were frequently observed at the study sites and exhibited different spatial patterns of distribution in accordance with the maximum depth of the reservoirs. In the reservoirs with a maximum depth of more than 6 m, high densities of D. brachyurum were observed in the bottom layers; however, in the shallower reservoirs (maximum depth <6 m, D. brachyurum were concentrated in the surface layer. Moreover, during additional surveys, we observed a trend in which D. brachyurum densities increased as the maximum depth or macrophyte biomass increased. Gut contents analysis revealed that predatory fishes in each reservoir frequently consumed D. brachyurum; however, the consumption rate abruptly decreased in reservoirs where the maximum depth was more than 11 m or in the shallow reservoirs supporting a macrophyte bed. Interestingly, the reservoirs more than 11-m depth supported high densities of D. brachyurum in the bottom layer and in the surface macrophyte bed. Based on these results, reservoirs with a maximum depth of more than 11 m or those with a macrophyte bed may provide a refuge for D. brachyurum to avoid fish predation. Compared with other cladoceran species, D. brachyurum readily exploits various types of refugia (in this study, the deep layer or surface macrophyte bed, which may help explain why this species is abundant in various types of reservoirs.

  12. Ultrasonic predator-prey interactions in water-convergent evolution with insects and bats in air?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Maria; Wahlberg, Magnus; Surlykke, Annemarie; Madsen, Peter Teglberg

    2013-01-01

    Toothed whales and bats have independently evolved biosonar systems to navigate and locate and catch prey. Such active sensing allows them to operate in darkness, but with the potential cost of warning prey by the emission of intense ultrasonic signals. At least six orders of nocturnal insects have independently evolved ears sensitive to ultrasound and exhibit evasive maneuvers when exposed to bat calls. Among aquatic prey on the other hand, the ability to detect and avoid ultrasound emitting predators seems to be limited to only one subfamily of Clupeidae: the Alosinae (shad and menhaden). These differences are likely rooted in the different physical properties of air and water where cuticular mechanoreceptors have been adapted to serve as ultrasound sensitive ears, whereas ultrasound detection in water have called for sensory cells mechanically connected to highly specialized gas volumes that can oscillate at high frequencies. In addition, there are most likely differences in the risk of predation between insects and fish from echolocating predators. The selection pressure among insects for evolving ultrasound sensitive ears is high, because essentially all nocturnal predation on flying insects stems from echolocating bats. In the interaction between toothed whales and their prey the selection pressure seems weaker, because toothed whales are by no means the only marine predators placing a selection pressure on their prey to evolve specific means to detect and avoid them. Toothed whales can generate extremely intense sound pressure levels, and it has been suggested that they may use these to debilitate prey. Recent experiments, however, show that neither fish with swim bladders, nor squid are debilitated by such signals. This strongly suggests that the production of high amplitude ultrasonic clicks serve the function of improving the detection range of the toothed whale biosonar system rather than debilitation of prey.

  13. Ultrasonic predator-prey interactions in water– convergent evolution with insects and bats in air?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria eWilson

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Toothed whales and bats have independently evolved biosonar systems to navigate and locate and catch prey. Such active sensing allows them to operate in darkness, but with the potential cost of warning prey by the emission of intense ultrasonic signals. At least six orders of nocturnal insects have independently evolved ears sensitive to ultrasound and exhibit evasive maneuvers when exposed to bat calls. Among aquatic prey on the other hand, the ability to detect and avoid ultrasound emitting predators seems to be limited to only one subfamily of Clupeidae: the Alosinae (shad and menhaden. These differences are likely rooted in the different physical properties of air and water where cuticular mechanoreceptors have been adapted to serve as ultrasound sensitive ears, whereas ultrasound detection in water have called for sensory cells mechanically connected to highly specialized gas volumes that can oscillate at high frequencies. In addition, there are most likely differences in the risk of predation between insects and fish from echolocating predators. The selection pressure among insects for evolving ultrasound sensitive ears is high, because essentially all nocturnal predation on flying insects stems from echolocating bats. In the interaction between toothed whales and their prey the selection pressure seems weaker, because toothed whales are by no means the only marine predators placing a selection pressure on their prey to evolve specific means to detect and avoid them.Toothed whales can generate extremely intense sound pressure levels, and it has been suggested that they may use these to debilitate prey. Recent experiments however, show that neither fish with swim bladder, nor squid are debilitated by such signals. This strongly suggests that the production of high amplitude ultrasonic clicks serve the function of improving the detection range of the toothed whale biosonar system rather than debilitation of prey.

  14. Fishing for lobsters indirectly increases epidemics in sea urchins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lafferty, Kevin D.

    2004-01-01

    Two ecological paradigms, the trophic cascade and the host-density threshold in disease, interact in the kelp-forest ecosystem to structure the community. To investigate what happens when a trophic cascade pushes a host population over a host-threshold density, I analyzed a 20-year data set of kelp forest communities at 16 sites in the region of the Channel Islands National Park, California, USA. Historically, lobsters, and perhaps other predators, kept urchin populations at low levels and kelp forests developed a community-level trophic cascade. In geographic areas where the main predators on urchins were fished, urchin populations increased to the extent that they overgrazed algae and starvation eventually limited urchin-population growth. Despite the limitation of urchin population size by food availability, urchin densities, at times, well exceeded the host-density threshold for epidemics. An urchin-specific bacterial disease entered the region after 1992 and acted as a density-dependent mortality source. Dense populations were more likely to experience epidemics and suffer higher mortality. Disease did not reduce the urchin population at a site to the density that predators previously did. Therefore, disease did not fully replace predators in the trophic cascade. These results indicate how fishing top predators can indirectly favor disease transmission in prey populations.

  15. Native predators do not influence invasion success of pacific lionfish on Caribbean reefs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hackerott, Serena; Valdivia, Abel; Green, Stephanie J; Côté, Isabelle M; Cox, Courtney E; Akins, Lad; Layman, Craig A; Precht, William F; Bruno, John F

    2013-01-01

    Biotic resistance, the process by which new colonists are excluded from a community by predation from and/or competition with resident species, can prevent or limit species invasions. We examined whether biotic resistance by native predators on Caribbean coral reefs has influenced the invasion success of red lionfishes (Pterois volitans and Pterois miles), piscivores from the Indo-Pacific. Specifically, we surveyed the abundance (density and biomass) of lionfish and native predatory fishes that could interact with lionfish (either through predation or competition) on 71 reefs in three biogeographic regions of the Caribbean. We recorded protection status of the reefs, and abiotic variables including depth, habitat type, and wind/wave exposure at each site. We found no relationship between the density or biomass of lionfish and that of native predators. However, lionfish densities were significantly lower on windward sites, potentially because of habitat preferences, and in marine protected areas, most likely because of ongoing removal efforts by reserve managers. Our results suggest that interactions with native predators do not influence the colonization or post-establishment population density of invasive lionfish on Caribbean reefs.

  16. The role of ecological context and predation risk-stimuli in revealing the true picture about the genetic basis of boldness evolution in fish

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Klefoth, Thomas; Skov, Christian; Krause, Jens

    2011-01-01

    To showcase the importance of genotype × environment interactions and the presence of predation risk in the experimental assessment of boldness in fish, we investigated boldness in terms of feeding behavior and refuge use in two genetically different populations of juvenile carp (Cyprinus carpio)...

  17. Preference for cannibalism and ontogenetic constraints in competitive ability of piscivorous top predators.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pär Byström

    Full Text Available Occurrence of cannibalism and inferior competitive ability of predators compared to their prey have been suggested to promote coexistence in size-structured intraguild predation (IGP systems. The intrinsic size-structure of fish provides the necessary prerequisites to test whether the above mechanisms are general features of species interactions in fish communities where IGP is common. We first experimentally tested whether Arctic char (Salvelinus alpinus were more efficient as a cannibal than as an interspecific predator on the prey fish ninespine stickleback (Pungitius pungitius and whether ninespine stickleback were a more efficient competitor on the shared zooplankton prey than its predator, Arctic char. Secondly, we performed a literature survey to evaluate if piscivores in general are more efficient as cannibals than as interspecific predators and whether piscivores are inferior competitors on shared resources compared to their prey fish species. Both controlled pool experiments and outdoor pond experiments showed that char imposed a higher mortality on YOY char than on ninespine sticklebacks, suggesting that piscivorous char is a more efficient cannibal than interspecific predator. Estimates of size dependent attack rates on zooplankton further showed a consistently higher attack rate of ninespine sticklebacks compared to similar sized char on zooplankton, suggesting that ninespine stickleback is a more efficient competitor than char on zooplankton resources. The literature survey showed that piscivorous top consumers generally selected conspecifics over interspecific prey, and that prey species are competitively superior compared to juvenile piscivorous species in the zooplankton niche. We suggest that the observed selectivity for cannibal prey over interspecific prey and the competitive advantage of prey species over juvenile piscivores are common features in fish communities and that the observed selectivity for cannibalism over

  18. Preference for cannibalism and ontogenetic constraints in competitive ability of piscivorous top predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Byström, Pär; Ask, Per; Andersson, Jens; Persson, Lennart

    2013-01-01

    Occurrence of cannibalism and inferior competitive ability of predators compared to their prey have been suggested to promote coexistence in size-structured intraguild predation (IGP) systems. The intrinsic size-structure of fish provides the necessary prerequisites to test whether the above mechanisms are general features of species interactions in fish communities where IGP is common. We first experimentally tested whether Arctic char (Salvelinus alpinus) were more efficient as a cannibal than as an interspecific predator on the prey fish ninespine stickleback (Pungitius pungitius) and whether ninespine stickleback were a more efficient competitor on the shared zooplankton prey than its predator, Arctic char. Secondly, we performed a literature survey to evaluate if piscivores in general are more efficient as cannibals than as interspecific predators and whether piscivores are inferior competitors on shared resources compared to their prey fish species. Both controlled pool experiments and outdoor pond experiments showed that char imposed a higher mortality on YOY char than on ninespine sticklebacks, suggesting that piscivorous char is a more efficient cannibal than interspecific predator. Estimates of size dependent attack rates on zooplankton further showed a consistently higher attack rate of ninespine sticklebacks compared to similar sized char on zooplankton, suggesting that ninespine stickleback is a more efficient competitor than char on zooplankton resources. The literature survey showed that piscivorous top consumers generally selected conspecifics over interspecific prey, and that prey species are competitively superior compared to juvenile piscivorous species in the zooplankton niche. We suggest that the observed selectivity for cannibal prey over interspecific prey and the competitive advantage of prey species over juvenile piscivores are common features in fish communities and that the observed selectivity for cannibalism over interspecific prey has

  19. Using consumption rate to assess potential predators for biological control of white perch

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gosch N.J.C.

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Control of undesirable fishes is important in aquatic systems, and using predation as a tool for biological control is an attractive option to fishery biologists. However, determining the appropriate predators for biological control is critical for success. The objective of this study was to evaluate the utility of consumption rate as an index to determine the most effective predators for biological control of an invasive fish. Consumption rate values were calculated for nine potential predators that prey on white perch Morone americana in Branched Oak and Pawnee reservoirs, Nebraska. The consumption rate index provided a unique and insightful means of determining the potential effectiveness of each predator species in controlling white perch. Cumulative frequency distributions facilitated interpretation by providing a graphical presentation of consumption rates by all individuals within each predator species. Largemouth bass Micropterus salmoides, walleye Sander vitreus and sauger S. canadensis were the most efficient white perch predators in both reservoirs; however, previous attempts to increase biomass of these predators have failed suggesting that successful biological control is unlikely using existing predator species in these Nebraska reservoirs.

  20. Impact of conservation areas on trophic interactions between apex predators and herbivores on coral reefs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rizzari, Justin R; Bergseth, Brock J; Frisch, Ashley J

    2015-04-01

    Apex predators are declining at alarming rates due to exploitation by humans, but we have yet to fully discern the impacts of apex predator loss on ecosystem function. In a management context, it is critically important to clarify the role apex predators play in structuring populations of lower trophic levels. Thus, we examined the top-down influence of reef sharks (an apex predator on coral reefs) and mesopredators on large-bodied herbivores. We measured the abundance, size structure, and biomass of apex predators, mesopredators, and herbivores across fished, no-take, and no-entry management zones in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, Australia. Shark abundance and mesopredator size and biomass were higher in no-entry zones than in fished and no-take zones, which indicates the viability of strictly enforced human exclusion areas as tools for the conservation of predator communities. Changes in predator populations due to protection in no-entry zones did not have a discernible influence on the density, size, or biomass of different functional groups of herbivorous fishes. The lack of a relationship between predators and herbivores suggests that top-down forces may not play a strong role in regulating large-bodied herbivorous coral reef fish populations. Given this inconsistency with traditional ecological theories of trophic cascades, trophic structures on coral reefs may need to be reassessed to enable the establishment of appropriate and effective management regimes. © 2014 Society for Conservation Biology.

  1. The Great White Guppy: Top Predator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michalski, G. M.

    2011-12-01

    Nitrogen isotopes are often used to trace the trophic level of members of an ecosystem. As part of a stable isotope biogeochemistry and forensics course at Purdue University, students are introduced to this concept by analyzing nitrogen isotopes in sea food purchased from local grocery stores. There is a systematic increase in 15N/14N ratios going from kelp to clams/shrimp, to sardines, to tuna and finally to shark. These enrichments demonstrate how nitrogen is enriched in biomass as predators consume prey. Some of the highest nitrogen isotope enrichments observed, however, are in the common guppy. We investigated a number of aquarium fish foods and find they typically have high nitrogen isotope ratios because they are made form fish meal that is produced primarily from the remains of predator fish such as tuna. From, a isotope perspective, the guppy is the top of the food chain, more ferocious than even the Great White shark.

  2. Central-place foraging and ecological effects of an invasive predator across multiple habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benkwitt, Cassandra E

    2016-10-01

    foraging are likely due to different constraints faced by invasive predators compared to native predators, namely that lionfish do not face increased predation risk with increased movement away from shelter sites. By foraging at greater distances from patch reefs than native predators, lionfish eliminated a spatial refuge from predation used by juveniles of many commercially and ecologically important reef fishes. © 2016 by the Ecological Society of America.

  3. Development of a New Technique to Assess Susceptibility to Predation Resulting from Sublethal Stresses (Indirect Mortality)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cada, G.F.

    2003-08-25

    Fish that pass through a hydroelectric turbine may not be killed directly, but may nonetheless experience sublethal stresses that will increase their susceptibility to predators (indirect mortality). There is a need to develop reliable tests for indirect mortality so that the full consequences of passage through turbines (and other routes around a hydroelectric dam) can be assessed. We evaluated a new technique for assessing indirect mortality, based on a behavioral response to a startling stimulus (akin to perceiving an approaching predator). We compare this technique to the standard predator preference test. The behavioral response is a rapid movement commonly referred to as a startle response, escape response, or C-shape, based on the characteristic body position assumed by the fish. When viewed from above, a startled fish bends into a C-shape, then springs back and swims away in a direction different from its original orientation. This predator avoidance (escape) behavior can be compromised by sublethal stresses that temporarily stun or disorient the fish. We subjected striped shiners and fathead minnows to varying intensities of either turbulence (10-, 20- or 30-min) or 2-min exposures to a fish anesthetic (100 or 200 mg/L of tricaine methanesulfonate), and evaluated their subsequent behavior. Individual fish were given a startle stimulus and filmed with a high-speed video camera. Each fish was startled and filmed twice before being stressed, and then at 1-, 5-, 15-, and 30-min post-exposure. The resulting image files were analyzed for a variety of behavioral measures including: presence of a response, time to first reaction, duration of reaction, time to formation of maximum C-shape, time to completion of C-shape, and completeness of C-shape. The most immediate measure of potential changes in fish behavior was whether stressed fish exhibited a startle response. For striped shiners, the number of fish not responding to the stimulus was significantly different

  4. Fishing destabilizes the biomass flow in the marine size spectrum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rochet, M-J; Benoît, E

    2012-01-22

    Fishing impacts on marine food webs are predicted by simulations of a size spectrum community model. In this model, predation is determined by predator and prey size and abundance, and drives predator growth and prey mortality. Fishing amplifies temporal oscillations in the biomass flow. Oscillations appear at lower fishing intensity and have wider amplitude when fishing is selective (removes a narrow size range) and/or when large fish are targeted, than when fishing is more balanced (catching a larger size range) or when small fish are targeted. A novel index of size diversity is developed, and is shown to be sensitive to both fishing intensity and selectivity. To avoid unstable food web dynamics with potential harmful consequences for fisheries, limiting both fishing intensity and selectivity might be an appropriate exploitation strategy.

  5. Effects of Microphallus turgidus (Trematoda: Microphallidae) on the predation, behavior, and swimming stamina of the grass shrimp Palaemonetes pugio.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kunz, Alyssa K; Pung, Oscar J

    2004-06-01

    The effect of the trematode Microphallus turgidus on its second intermediate host, the grass shrimp, Palaemonetes pugio, was tested. To do so, we measured the susceptibility of infected and uninfected shrimp to predation by the mummichog, Fundulus heteroclitus. Shrimp behavior was compared in the presence and absence of a fish predator, and the swimming stamina and backthrust escape responses of infected and uninfected shrimp were measured. Infected shrimp were more likely to be eaten by a predator than uninfected shrimp, had lower swimming stamina, and spent more time swimming and less time motionless in the presence of a predator. There was no difference between backthrust distances traveled in response to a stimulus by either infected or uninfected shrimp. Thus, M. turgidus may increase the predation of P. pugio in the wild, possibly by affecting the swimming stamina and predator avoidance responses of the shrimp.

  6. Role of habitat complexity in predator-prey dynamics between an introduced fish and larval Long-toed Salamanders (Ambystoma macrodactylum)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kenison, Erin K; Litt, Andrea R.; Pilliod, David S.; McMahon, Tom E

    2016-01-01

    Predation by nonnative fishes has reduced abundance and increased extinction risk for amphibian populations worldwide. Although rare, fish and palatable amphibians have been observed to coexist where aquatic vegetation and structural complexity provide suitable refugia. We examined whether larval long-toed salamanders (Ambystoma macrodactylum Baird, 1849) increased use of vegetation cover in lakes with trout and whether adding vegetation structure could reduce predation risk and nonconsumptive effects (NCEs), such as reductions in body size and delayed metamorphosis. We compared use of vegetation cover by larval salamanders in lakes with and without trout and conducted a field experiment to investigate the influence of added vegetation structure on salamander body morphology and life history. The probability of catching salamanders in traps in lakes with trout was positively correlated with the proportion of submerged vegetation and surface cover. Growth rates of salamanders in enclosures with trout cues decreased as much as 85% and the probability of metamorphosis decreased by 56%. We did not find evidence that adding vegetation reduced NCEs in experimental enclosures, but salamanders in lakes with trout utilized more highly-vegetated areas which suggests that adding vegetation structure at the scale of the whole lake may facilitate coexistence between salamanders and introduced trout.

  7. Sea urchins, their predators and prey in SW Portugal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nuno Mamede

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Sea urchins play a key role structuring benthic communities of rocky shores through an intense herbivory. The most abundant sea urchin species on shallow rocky subtidal habitats of the SW coast of Portugal is Paracentrotus lividus (Echinodermata: Echinoidea. It is considered a key species in various locations throughout its geographical distribution by affecting the structure of macroalgae communities and may cause the abrupt transformation of habitats dominated by foliose algae to habitats dominated by encrusting algae - the urchin barrens. The removal of P. lividus predators by recreational and commercial fishing is considered a major cause of this phenomenon by affecting the trophic relationships between predators, sea urchins and algae communities. Marine protected areas (MPAs usually lead to the recovery of important predator species that control sea urchin populations and restore habitats dominated by foliose macroalgae. Therefore, MPAs provide a good opportunity to test cascading effects and indirect impacts of fishing at the ecosystem level. The ecological role of P. lividus was studied on rocky subtidal habitats of the SW coast of Portugal (Alentejo considering three trophic levels: population of P. lividus, their predators (fish and shellfish and their prey (macroalgae communities. Several studies were conducted: (1 a non-destructive observational study on the abundance and distribution patterns of P. lividus, their predators and preys, comparing areas with different protection; (2 a manipulative in situ study with cages to assess the role of P. lividus as an herbivore and the influence of predation; (3 a descriptive study of P. lividus predators based on underwater filming; (4 and a study of human perception on these trophic relationships and other issues on sea urchin ecology and fishery, based on surveys made to fishermen and divers. Subtidal studies were performed with SCUBA diving at 3-12 m deep. Results indicate that in the

  8. New parasites and predators follow the introduction of two fish species to a subarctic lake: implications for food-web structure and functioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amundsen, Per-Arne; Lafferty, Kevin D.; Knudsen, Rune; Primicerio, Raul; Kristoffersen, Roar; Klemetsen, Anders; Kuris, Armand M.

    2012-01-01

    Introduced species can alter the topology of food webs. For instance, an introduction can aid the arrival of free-living consumers using the new species as a resource, while new parasites may also arrive with the introduced species. Food-web responses to species additions can thus be far more complex than anticipated. In a subarctic pelagic food web with free-living and parasitic species, two fish species (arctic charr Salvelinus alpinus and three-spined stickleback Gasterosteus aculeatus) have known histories as deliberate introductions. The effects of these introductions on the food web were explored by comparing the current pelagic web with a heuristic reconstruction of the pre-introduction web. Extinctions caused by these introductions could not be evaluated by this approach. The introduced fish species have become important hubs in the trophic network, interacting with numerous parasites, predators and prey. In particular, five parasite species and four predatory bird species depend on the two introduced species as obligate trophic resources in the pelagic web and could therefore not have been present in the pre-introduction network. The presence of the two introduced fish species and the arrival of their associated parasites and predators increased biodiversity, mean trophic level, linkage density, and nestedness; altering both the network structure and functioning of the pelagic web. Parasites, in particular trophically transmitted species, had a prominent role in the network alterations that followed the introductions.

  9. Native predators do not influence invasion success of pacific lionfish on Caribbean reefs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Serena Hackerott

    Full Text Available Biotic resistance, the process by which new colonists are excluded from a community by predation from and/or competition with resident species, can prevent or limit species invasions. We examined whether biotic resistance by native predators on Caribbean coral reefs has influenced the invasion success of red lionfishes (Pterois volitans and Pterois miles, piscivores from the Indo-Pacific. Specifically, we surveyed the abundance (density and biomass of lionfish and native predatory fishes that could interact with lionfish (either through predation or competition on 71 reefs in three biogeographic regions of the Caribbean. We recorded protection status of the reefs, and abiotic variables including depth, habitat type, and wind/wave exposure at each site. We found no relationship between the density or biomass of lionfish and that of native predators. However, lionfish densities were significantly lower on windward sites, potentially because of habitat preferences, and in marine protected areas, most likely because of ongoing removal efforts by reserve managers. Our results suggest that interactions with native predators do not influence the colonization or post-establishment population density of invasive lionfish on Caribbean reefs.

  10. Pelagic cephalopods in the western Indian Ocean: New information from diets of top predators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ménard, Frédéric; Potier, Michel; Jaquemet, Sébastien; Romanov, Evgeny; Sabatié, Richard; Cherel, Yves

    2013-10-01

    Using a combination of diverse large predatory fishes and one seabird, we collected information on the cephalopod fauna of the western Indian Ocean. We analyzed the stomach contents of 35 fishes representing ten families (Xiphiidae, Istiophoridae, Scombridae, Carangidae, Coryphaenidae, Alepisauridae, Dasyatidae, Carcharhinidae, Alopiidae and Sphyrnidae) and of the sooty tern Onychoprion fuscata of the Mozambique Channel from 2000 to 2010. Both fresh and accumulated beaks were used for identifying cephalopod prey. Cephalopods were important prey for twelve predators; swordfish Xiphias gladius had the highest cephalopod proportion; sooty tern (O. fuscata) and bigeye tuna (Thunnus obesus) had high proportions too. We recovered 23 cephalopod families and identified 38 species. Ten species from four Teuthida families (Ommastrephidae, Onychoteuthidae, Histioteuthidae and Ancistrocheiridae) and two Octopoda families (Argonautidae and Bolitaenidae) occurred very frequently in the stomach contents, while Sepiida were rare. Ommastrephidae were the most cephalopod food sources: the purpleback flying squid Sthenoteuthis oualaniensis was the most prevalent prey by far, Ornithoteuthis volatilis was important for eleven predators and few but large specimens of the neon flying squid Ommastrephes bartramii were recovered in the stomachs of swordfish in the Indian South Subtropical Gyre province only. Predators' groups were identified based on cephalopod prey composition, on depth in which they forage, and on prey size. Surface predators' diets were characterized by lower cephalopod diversity but greater average numbers of cephalopod prey, whereas the deep-dwelling predators (swordfish and bigeye tuna) preyed on larger specimens than surface predators (O. fuscata or yellowfin tunas Thunnus albacares). Our findings emphasized the usefulness of a community of marine predators to gain valuable information on the biology and the distribution of the cephalopod forage fauna that are

  11. Power lines, roads, and avian nest survival: effects on predator identity and predation intensity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeGregorio, Brett A; Weatherhead, Patrick J; Sperry, Jinelle H

    2014-05-01

    1 Anthropogenic alteration of landscapes can affect avian nest success by influencing the abundance, distribution, and behavior of predators. Understanding avian nest predation risk necessitates understanding how landscapes affect predator distribution and behavior. 2 From a sample of 463 nests of 17 songbird species, we evaluated how landscape features (distance to forest edge, unpaved roads, and power lines) influenced daily nest survival. We also used video cameras to identify nest predators at 137 nest predation events and evaluated how landscape features influenced predator identity. Finally, we determined the abundance and distribution of several of the principal predators using surveys and radiotelemetry. 3 Distance to power lines was the best predictor of predator identity: predation by brown-headed cowbirds (Molothrus ater), corvids (Corvus sp. and Cyanocitta cristata), racers (Coluber constrictor), and coachwhips (Masticophis flagellum) increased with proximity to power lines, whereas predation by rat snakes (Elaphe obsoleta) and raptors decreased. In some cases, predator density may reliably indicate nest predation risk because racers, corvids, and cowbirds frequently used power line right-of-ways. 4 Of five bird species with enough nests to analyze individually, daily nest survival of only indigo buntings (Passerina cyanea) decreased with proximity to power lines, despite predation by most predators at our site being positively associated with power lines. For all nesting species combined, distance to unpaved road was the model that most influenced daily nest survival. This pattern is likely a consequence of rat snakes, the locally dominant nest predator (28% of predation events), rarely using power lines and associated areas. Instead, rat snakes were frequently associated with road edges, indicating that not all edges are functionally similar. 5 Our results suggest that interactions between predators and landscape features are likely to be specific to

  12. Predation on larval Atlantic herring (Clupea harengus) in inshore waters of the Baltic Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kotterba, Paul; Moll, Dorothee; von Nordheim, Lena; Peck, Myron A.; Oesterwind, Daniel; Polte, Patrick

    2017-11-01

    In fishery science, early life-stage survival and development are regarded as major factors driving the population dynamics of marine fishes. During the last century, the main research focus has been on the spatio-temporal match of larval fish and appropriate food (bottom-up processes). However, these field studies are often criticised for their limited capability to disentangle their results from mortality caused by predation since these top-down mechanisms are rarely studied. We examined the predation on herring (Clupea harengus) larvae in a Baltic inshore lagoon by investigating the spatio-temporal overlap of larval herring and their potential predators such as the dominant threespine stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus) in distinct habitats (sublittoral and littoral areas) using a set of different gears and sampling techniques. Despite significant spatial and temporal predator-prey overlap, stomach analyses suggested that very few larvae were consumed by sticklebacks, even if projected to the entire study area and season. Other well-known predators of clupeid larvae such as gelatinous plankton occur later in the year after young herring have migrated out of the system. The observed predation on herring larvae was much less than expected and appears being a minor factor in determining herring reproduction success in our study area, particularly if compared to other causes of mortality such as egg predation. Providing a relatively good shelter from predation might be a key element making transitional waters valuable nursery grounds for the offspring of migrating marine fish species.

  13. Evidence of lead biomagnification in invertebrate predators from laboratory and field experiments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rubio-Franchini, Isidoro; Rico-Martinez, Roberto

    2011-01-01

    This report includes atomic absorption data from water column, elutriates and zooplankton that demonstrate that lead biomagnifies at El Niagara reservoir, Mexico. Results include field data (bioaccumulation factors) (BAFs) and laboratory data (bioconcentration factors) (BCFs). Two findings: high BAFs for invertebrate predator like Acanthocyclops robustus, Asplanchna brightwellii, Culex sp. larvae, and Hyalella azteca, compared to grazer species Moina micrura and Simocephalus vetulus; low BCF's found for some predators, suggested that lead biomagnifications were taking place. The presence of Moina micrura in the gut of Asplanchna allowed us to design experiments where A. brightwellii was fed lead-exposed M. micrura neonates. The BAF of Asplanchna was 123,684, BCF was 490. Asplanchna individuals fed exposed Moina had 13.31 times more lead than Asplanchna individuals just exposed 48-h to lead, confirming that lead biomagnification occurs. Results of two fish species showed no lead biomagnification, suggesting that lead biomagnification might be restricted to invertebrate predators. - Highlights: → Study shows lead biomagnification evidence in reservoirs where top predators are invertebrates. → Study discusses why in previous studies lead biomagnifications were not detected. → Evidence of biomagnification comes from field and laboratory studies. - This study shows evidence (from field and laboratory experiments) of lead biomagnification in a freshwater reservoir where the main predators are invertebrates.

  14. Do top predators cue on sound production by mesopelagic prey?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baumann-Pickering, S.; Checkley, D. M., Jr.; Demer, D. A.

    2016-02-01

    Deep-scattering layer (DSL) organisms, comprising a variety of mesopelagic fishes, and squids, siphonophores, crustaceans, and other invertebrates, are preferred prey for numerous large marine predators, e.g. cetaceans, seabirds, and fishes. Some of the DSL species migrate from depth during daylight to feed near the surface at night, transitioning during dusk and dawn. We investigated if any DSL organisms create sound, particularly during the crepuscular periods. Over several nights in summer 2015, underwater sound was recorded in the San Diego Trough using a high-frequency acoustic recording package (HARP, 10 Hz to 100 kHz), suspended from a drifting surface float. Acoustic backscatter from the DSL was monitored nearby using a calibrated multiple-frequency (38, 70, 120, and 200 kHz) split-beam echosounder (Simrad EK60) on a small boat. DSL organisms produced sound, between 300 and 1000 Hz, and the received levels were highest when the animals migrated past the recorder during ascent and descent. The DSL are globally present, so the observed acoustic phenomenon, if also ubiquitous, has wide-reaching implications. Sound travels farther than light or chemicals and thus can be sensed at greater distances by predators, prey, and mates. If sound is a characteristic feature of pelagic ecosystems, it likely plays a role in predator-prey relationships and overall ecosystem dynamics. Our new finding inspires numerous questions such as: Which, how, and why have DSL organisms evolved to create sound, for what do they use it and under what circumstances? Is sound production by DSL organisms truly ubiquitous, or does it depend on the local environment and species composition? How may sound production and perception be adapted to a changing environment? Do predators react to changes in sound? Can sound be used to quantify the composition of mixed-species assemblages, component densities and abundances, and hence be used in stock assessment or predictive modeling?

  15. Hairworm anti-predator strategy: a study of causes and consequences

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ponton, Fleur; Lebarbenchon, Camille; Lefèvre, Thierry

    2006-01-01

    One of the most fascinating anti-predator responses displayed by parasites is that of hairworms (Nematomorpha). Following the ingestion of the insect host by fish or frogs, the parasitic worm is able to actively exit both its host and the gut of the predator. Using as a model the hairworm, Parago...

  16. Anti-piracy in a sea of predation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bruvik Westberg, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    a considerable impact on the decline in piracy. Moreover, naval–coastal engagement and cooperation run deeper than is commonly perceived. While grievances against illegal fishing are widespread, examination of the fishing sector reveals a significant amount of predation committed by local stakeholders....... Competition for fishing sector rents, particularly over distribution of licences, occurs on the local, regional and national levels. Bonds between some pirates, smugglers and officials threaten coastal community development and undermine their security. This study concludes that Somalia's maritime predatory...

  17. Fatty acid composition of fish species with different feeding habits from an Arctic Lake.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gladyshev, M I; Sushchik, N N; Glushchenko, L A; Zadelenov, V A; Rudchenko, A E; Dgebuadze, Y Y

    2017-05-01

    We compared the composition and content of fatty acids (FAs) in fish with different feeding habits (sardine (least) cisco Coregonus sardinella, goggle-eyed charr (pucheglazka) form of Salvelinus alpinus complex, humpback whitefish Coregonus pidschian, broad whitefish Coregonus nasus, boganid charr Salvelinus boganidae, and northern pike Esox lucius from an Arctic Lake. Feeding habits of the studied fish (planktivore, benthivore, or piscivore) significantly affected the composition of biomarker fatty acids and the ratio of stable isotopes of carbon and nitrogen in their biomass. The hypothesis on a higher content of eicosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic acids in the fish of higher trophic level (piscivores) when compared within the same taxonomic group (order Salmoniformes) was confirmed.

  18. Predator-induced reduction of freshwater carbon dioxide emissions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atwood, Trisha B.; Hammill, Edd; Greig, Hamish S.; Kratina, Pavel; Shurin, Jonathan B.; Srivastava, Diane S.; Richardson, John S.

    2013-03-01

    Predators can influence the exchange of carbon dioxide between ecosystems and the atmosphere by altering ecosystem processes such as decomposition and primary production, according to food web theory. Empirical knowledge of such an effect in freshwater systems is limited, but it has been suggested that predators in odd-numbered food chains suppress freshwater carbon dioxide emissions, and predators in even-numbered food chains enhance emissions. Here, we report experiments in three-tier food chains in experimental ponds, streams and bromeliads in Canada and Costa Rica in the presence or absence of fish (Gasterosteus aculeatus) and invertebrate (Hesperoperla pacifica and Mecistogaster modesta) predators. We monitored carbon dioxide fluxes along with prey and primary producer biomass. We found substantially reduced carbon dioxide emissions in the presence of predators in all systems, despite differences in predator type, hydrology, climatic region, ecological zone and level of in situ primary production. We also observed lower amounts of prey biomass and higher amounts of algal and detrital biomass in the presence of predators. We conclude that predators have the potential to markedly influence carbon dioxide dynamics in freshwater systems.

  19. Neotropical fish-fruit interactions: eco-evolutionary dynamics and conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Correa, Sandra Bibiana; Costa-Pereira, Raul; Fleming, Theodore; Goulding, Michael; Anderson, Jill T

    2015-11-01

    Frugivorous fish play a prominent role in seed dispersal and reproductive dynamics of plant communities in riparian and floodplain habitats of tropical regions worldwide. In Neotropical wetlands, many plant species have fleshy fruits and synchronize their fruiting with the flood season, when fruit-eating fish forage in forest and savannahs for periods of up to 7 months. We conducted a comprehensive analysis to examine the evolutionary origin of fish-fruit interactions, describe fruit traits associated with seed dispersal and seed predation, and assess the influence of fish size on the effectiveness of seed dispersal by fish (ichthyochory). To date, 62 studies have documented 566 species of fruits and seeds from 82 plant families in the diets of 69 Neotropical fish species. Fish interactions with flowering plants are likely to be as old as 70 million years in the Neotropics, pre-dating most modern bird-fruit and mammal-fruit interactions, and contributing to long-distance seed dispersal and possibly the radiation of early angiosperms. Ichthyochory occurs across the angiosperm phylogeny, and is more frequent among advanced eudicots. Numerous fish species are capable of dispersing small seeds, but only a limited number of species can disperse large seeds. The size of dispersed seeds and the probability of seed dispersal both increase with fish size. Large-bodied species are the most effective seed dispersal agents and remain the primary target of fishing activities in the Neotropics. Thus, conservation efforts should focus on these species to ensure continuity of plant recruitment dynamics and maintenance of plant diversity in riparian and floodplain ecosystems. © 2015 Cambridge Philosophical Society.

  20. Interactions among predators and plant specificity protect herbivores from top predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bosc, Christopher; Pauw, Anton; Roets, Francois; Hui, Cang

    2018-05-04

    The worldwide loss of top predators from natural and agricultural systems has heightened the need to understand how important they are in controlling herbivore abundance. The effect of top predators on herbivore species is likely to depend on 1) the importance of the consumption of intermediate predators by top predators (intra-guild predation; IGP), but also on 2) plant specificity by herbivores, because specialists may defend themselves better (enemy-free space; EFS). Insectivorous birds, as top predators, are generally known to effectively control herbivorous insects, despite also consuming intermediate predators such as spiders, but how this effect varies among herbivore species in relation to the cascading effects of IGP and EFS is not known. To explore this, we excluded birds from natural fynbos vegetation in South Africa using large netted cages and recorded changes in abundance relative to control plots for 199 plant-dwelling intermediate predator and 341 herbivore morpho-species that varied in their estimated plant specificity. We found a strong negative effect of birds on the total abundance of all intermediate predators, with especially clear effects on spiders (strong IGP). In contrast with previous studies, which document a negative effect of birds on herbivores, we found an overall neutral effect of birds on herbivore abundance, but the effect varied among species: some species were negatively affected by birds, suggesting that they were mainly consumed by birds, whereas others, likely released from spiders by IGP, were positively affected. Some species were also effectively neutrally affected by birds. These tended to be more specialized to plants compared to the other species, which may imply that some plant specialists benefited from protection provided by EFS from both birds and spiders. These results suggest that the response of herbivore species to top predators may depend on cascading effects of interactions among predators and on their degree

  1. Seasonal and among-stream variation in predator encounter rates for fish prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bret C. Harvey; Rodney J. Nakamoto

    2013-01-01

    Recognition that predators have indirect effects on prey populations that may exceed their direct consumptive effects highlights the need for a better understanding of spatiotemporal variation in predator–prey interactions. We used photographic monitoring of tethered Rainbow Trout Oncorhynchus mykiss and Cutthroat Trout O. clarkii to quantify predator encounter rates...

  2. Can Daphnia lumholtzi invade European lakes?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meike Wittmann

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available The cladoceran Daphnia lumholtzi is a subtropical and tropical zooplankter, and an invasive species in North America. Thus far, D. lumholtzi has not been detected in Europe. Here we investigated whether a hypothetical introduction to Europe could result in a successful invasion, either now or in the near future when facilitated by climate change. In laboratory experiments, we tested whether different clones of D. lumholtzi can invade a resident community consisting of native Daphnia from lake Klostersee, Germany, and how invasion success depends on temperature and the presence or absence of planktivorous fish. In some treatments, invasion success was consistently high, and D. lumholtzi reached densities similar to the native competitors by the end of the experiment. The presence of a planktivorous fish reduced the invasion success of D. lumholtzi, and a clone with an inducible defense against fish predation was a more successful invader than a permanently defended clone. Of the three temperatures tested in this study (15, 20, and 24 °C, invasion success was highest at 20 °C. To understand the competitive interaction between native and introduced Daphnia, we fit a Lotka-Volterra-type competition model to the population dynamics. Our experimental and modeling results suggest that D. lumholtzi can invade European lakes and can cause substantial declines in the population size of native Daphnia, with potential consequences for higher trophic levels.

  3. Current ecological understanding of fungal-like pathogens of fish: what lies beneath?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodolphe Elie Gozlan

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Despite increasingly sophisticated microbiological techniques, and long after the first discovery of microbes, basic knowledge is still lacking to fully appreciate the ecological importance of microbial parasites in fish. This is likely due to the nature of their habitats as many species of fish suffer from living beneath turbid water away from easy recording. However, fishes represent key ecosystem services for millions of people around the world and the absence of a functional ecological understanding of viruses, prokaryotes, and small eukaryotes in the maintenance of fish populations and of their diversity represents an inherent barrier to aquatic conservation and food security. Among recent emerging infectious diseases responsible for severe population declines in plant and animal taxa, fungal and fungal-like microbes have emerged as significant contributors. Here, we review the current knowledge gaps of fungal and fungal-like parasites and pathogens in fish and put them into an ecological perspective with direct implications for the monitoring of fungal fish pathogens in the wild, their phylogeography as well as their associated ecological impact on fish populations. With increasing fish movement around the world for farming, releases into the wild for sport fishing and human-driven habitat changes, it is expected, along with improved environmental monitoring of fungal and fungal-like infections, that the full extent of the impact of these pathogens on wild fish populations will soon emerge as a major threat to freshwater biodiversity.

  4. Predation by northern squawfish on live and dead juvenile chinook salmon

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gadomski, D.M.; Hall-Griswold, J.A.

    1992-01-01

    Northern squawfish Ptychocheilus oregonensis is a major predator of juvenile salmonids Oncorhynchus spp. migrating downstream through the Columbia River. High predation rates occur just below dams. If northern squawfish selectively consume salmonids killed or injured during dam passage, previous estimates of predation mortality may be too high. We conducted laboratory experiments that indicate northern squawfish prefer dead juvenile chinook salmon O. tshawytscha over live individuals. When equal numbers of dead and live chinook salmon were offered to northern squawfish maintained on a natural photoperiod (15 h light: 9 h darkness), significantly more (P < 0.05) dead than live fish were consumed, both in 1,400-L circular tanks and in an 11,300-L raceway (62% and 79% of prey consumed were dead, respectively). When dead and live juvenile chinook salmon were provided in proportions more similar to those below dams (20% dead, 80% live), northern squawfish still selected for dead prey (36% of fish consumed were dead). In additional experiments, northern squawfish were offered a proportion of 20% dead juvenile chinook salmon during 4-h periods of either light or darkness. The predators were much more selective for dead chinook salmon during bright light (88% of fish consumed were dead) than during darkness (31% were dead)

  5. Zooplankton taxonomic and size diversity in Mediterranean coastal lagoons (NE Iberian Peninsula): Influence of hydrology, nutrient composition, food resource availability and predation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Badosa, Anna; Boix, Dani; Brucet, Sandra; López-Flores, Rocío; Gascón, Stéphanie; Quintana, Xavier D.

    2007-01-01

    The influence of hydrology, nutrient composition, food resource availability and predation on zooplankton taxonomic and size diversity was analyzed in several shallow lagoons of a Mediterranean salt marsh (Baix Ter Wetlands, NE Iberian Peninsula). Taxonomic diversity correlated better with variables related to the trophic state, such as nutrient concentrations, whereas size diversity was more sensitive to fish predation. However, the fish predation influence on the size diversity was only significant when fishes reached high densities. Under low fish densities no predation effects were observed and the food resource availability (FR a) appeared to be more important in structuring the zooplankton community. Nevertheless, the two diversity indexes showed opposite responses to this factor. With increasing FR a the taxonomic diversity increased and the size diversity decreased. Neither taxonomic nor size diversity of the zooplankton community correlated with other physical or biotic factors such as hydrological variability or macroinvertebrate predation. The relationships found suggest that the size diversity is mainly related to biotic interactions, such as fish predation or inter/intraspecific competition, while the taxonomic diversity appears to be more sensitive to abiotic factors such as the nutrient composition.

  6. Avian predation on juvenile salmonids in the Lower Columbia River; 1998 annual report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Collis, Ken; Adamany, Stephanie; Roby, Daniel D.; Craig, David P.; Lyons, Donald E.

    2000-01-01

    The authors initiated a field study in 1997 to assess the impacts of fish-eating colonial waterbirds (i.e., terns, cormorants, and gulls) on the survival of juvenile salmonids in the lower Columbia River. Here the authors present results from the 1998 breeding season, the second field season of work on this project. The research objectives in 1998 were to: (1) determine the location, size, nesting chronology, nesting success, and population trajectories of breeding colonies of fish-eating birds in the lower Columbia River; (2) determine diet composition of fish-eating birds, including taxonomic composition and energy content of various prey types; (3) estimate forage fish consumption rates, with special emphasis on juvenile salmonids, by breeding adults and their young; (4) determine the relative vulnerability of different groups of juvenile salmonids to bird predation; (5) identify foraging range, foraging strategies, and habitat utilization by piscivorous waterbirds; and (6) test the feasibility of various alternative methods for managing avian predation on juvenile salmonids and develop recommendations to reduce avian predation, if warranted by the results

  7. Avian Predation on Juvenile Salmonids in the Lower Columbia River: 1998 Annual Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Collis, Ken; Adamany, Stephanie; Roby, Daniel D.; Craig, David P.; Lyons, Donald E.

    2000-04-01

    The authors initiated a field study in 1997 to assess the impacts of fish-eating colonial waterbirds (i.e., terns, cormorants, and gulls) on the survival of juvenile salmonids in the lower Columbia River. Here the authors present results from the 1998 breeding season, the second field season of work on this project. The research objectives in 1998 were to: (1) determine the location, size, nesting chronology, nesting success, and population trajectories of breeding colonies of fish-eating birds in the lower Columbia River; (2) determine diet composition of fish-eating birds, including taxonomic composition and energy content of various prey types; (3) estimate forage fish consumption rates, with special emphasis on juvenile salmonids, by breeding adults and their young; (4) determine the relative vulnerability of different groups of juvenile salmonids to bird predation; (5) identify foraging range, foraging strategies, and habitat utilization by piscivorous waterbirds; and (6) test the feasibility of various alternative methods for managing avian predation on juvenile salmonids and develop recommendations to reduce avian predation, if warranted by the results.

  8. Behavior of prey links midwater and demersal piscivorous reef fishes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter J. Auster

    Full Text Available Pelagic and demersal guilds of piscivorous fishes are linked by a variety of biological and physical processes that mediate interactions with common prey species. Understanding the behaviors of predators and prey can provide insight into the conditions that make such linkages possible. Here we report on the behaviors of mid-water piscivorous fishes and the responses of prey that produce feeding opportunities for demersal piscivorous fishes associated with "live bottom" ledge habitats off the coast of Georgia (northwest Atlantic Ocean. Prey taxa reduced nearest neighbor distances and retreated towards the seafloor during predatory attacks by mid-water fishes. Demersal fishes subsequently attacked and consumed prey in these ephemeral high density patches. No predation by demersal fishes was observed when prey species were at background densities. If the predator-prey interactions of demersal piscivorous fishes are commonly mediated by the predatory behavior of midwater piscivorous fishes and their prey, such indirect facilitative behaviors may be important in terms of the population processes (e.g., prey consumption and growth rates of these demersal fishes.

  9. Why do fish school?

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Matz LARSSON

    2012-01-01

    Synchronized movements (schooling) emit complex and overlapping sound and pressure curves that might confuse the inner ear and lateral line organ (LLO) of a predator.Moreover,prey-fish moving close to each other may blur the electro-sensory perception of predators.The aim of this review is to explore mechanisms associated with synchronous swimming that may have contributed to increased adaptation and as a consequence may have influenced the evolution of schooling.The evolutionary development of the inner ear and the LLO increased the capacity to detect potential prey,possibly leading to an increased potential for cannibalism in the shoal,but also helped small fish to avoid joining larger fish,resulting in size homogeneity and,accordingly,an increased capacity for moving in synchrony.Water-movements and incidental sound produced as by-product of locomotion (ISOL) may provide fish with potentially useful information during swimming,such as neighbour body-size,speed,and location.When many fish move close to one another ISOL will be energetic and complex.Quiet intervals will be few.Fish moving in synchrony will have the capacity to discontinue movements simultaneously,providing relatively quiet intervals to allow the reception of potentially critical environmental signals.Besides,synchronized movements may facilitate auditory grouping of ISOL.Turning preference bias,well-functioning sense organs,good health,and skillful motor performance might be important to achieving an appropriate distance to school neighbors und aid the individual fish in reducing time spent in the comparatively less safe school periphery.Turning preferences in ancestral fish shoals might have helped fish to maintain groups and stay in formarion,reinforcing aforementioned predator confusion mechanisms,which possibly played a role in the lateralization of the vertebrate brain [Current Zoology 58 (1):116-128,2012].

  10. Culling prey promotes predator recovery - Alternative states in a whole-lake experiment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Persson, L.; Amundsen, P.A.; de Roos, A.M.; Klemetsen, A.; Knudsen, R.; Primicerio, R.

    2007-01-01

    Many top-predator fish stocks in both freshwater and marine systems have collapsed as a result of overharvesting. Consequently, some of these communities have shifted into seemingly irreversible new states. We showed, for predators feeding on prey that exhibit food-dependent growth, that culling of

  11. How does the presence of a conspecific individual change the behavioral game that a predator plays with its prey?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vardi, Reut; Abramsky, Zvika; Kotler, Burt P; Altstein, Ofir; Rosenzweig, Michael L

    2017-07-01

    Behavioral games predators play among themselves may have profound effects on behavioral games predators play with their prey. We studied the behavioral game between predators and prey within the framework of social foraging among predators. We tested how conspecific interactions among predators (little egret) change the predator-prey behavioral game and foraging success. To do so, we examined foraging behavior of egrets alone and in pairs (male and female) in a specially designed aviary consisting of three equally spaced pools with identical initial prey (comet goldfish) densities. Each pool was comprised of a risky microhabitat, rich with food, and a safe microhabitat with no food, forcing the fish to trade off food and safety. When faced with two versus one egret, we found that fish significantly reduced activity in the risky habitat. Egrets in pairs suffered reduced foraging success (negative intraspecific density dependence) and responded to fish behavior and to their conspecific by changing their visiting regime at the different pools-having shorter, more frequent visits. The time egret spent on each visit allowed them to match their long-term capture success rate across the environment to their capture success rate in the pool, which satisfies one aspect of optimality. Overall, egrets in pairs allocated more time for foraging and changed their foraging tactics to focus more on fish under cover and fish 'peeping' out from their shelter. These results suggest that both prey and predator show behavioral flexibility and can adjust to changing conditions as needed in this foraging game.

  12. Early Triassic marine biotic recovery: the predators' perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheyer, Torsten M; Romano, Carlo; Jenks, Jim; Bucher, Hugo

    2014-01-01

    Examining the geological past of our planet allows us to study periods of severe climatic and biological crises and recoveries, biotic and abiotic ecosystem fluctuations, and faunal and floral turnovers through time. Furthermore, the recovery dynamics of large predators provide a key for evaluation of the pattern and tempo of ecosystem recovery because predators are interpreted to react most sensitively to environmental turbulences. The end-Permian mass extinction was the most severe crisis experienced by life on Earth, and the common paradigm persists that the biotic recovery from the extinction event was unusually slow and occurred in a step-wise manner, lasting up to eight to nine million years well into the early Middle Triassic (Anisian) in the oceans, and even longer in the terrestrial realm. Here we survey the global distribution and size spectra of Early Triassic and Anisian marine predatory vertebrates (fishes, amphibians and reptiles) to elucidate the height of trophic pyramids in the aftermath of the end-Permian event. The survey of body size was done by compiling maximum standard lengths for the bony fishes and some cartilaginous fishes, and total size (estimates) for the tetrapods. The distribution and size spectra of the latter are difficult to assess because of preservation artifacts and are thus mostly discussed qualitatively. The data nevertheless demonstrate that no significant size increase of predators is observable from the Early Triassic to the Anisian, as would be expected from the prolonged and stepwise trophic recovery model. The data further indicate that marine ecosystems characterized by multiple trophic levels existed from the earliest Early Triassic onwards. However, a major change in the taxonomic composition of predatory guilds occurred less than two million years after the end-Permian extinction event, in which a transition from fish/amphibian to fish/reptile-dominated higher trophic levels within ecosystems became apparent.

  13. Early Triassic marine biotic recovery: the predators' perspective.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Torsten M Scheyer

    Full Text Available Examining the geological past of our planet allows us to study periods of severe climatic and biological crises and recoveries, biotic and abiotic ecosystem fluctuations, and faunal and floral turnovers through time. Furthermore, the recovery dynamics of large predators provide a key for evaluation of the pattern and tempo of ecosystem recovery because predators are interpreted to react most sensitively to environmental turbulences. The end-Permian mass extinction was the most severe crisis experienced by life on Earth, and the common paradigm persists that the biotic recovery from the extinction event was unusually slow and occurred in a step-wise manner, lasting up to eight to nine million years well into the early Middle Triassic (Anisian in the oceans, and even longer in the terrestrial realm. Here we survey the global distribution and size spectra of Early Triassic and Anisian marine predatory vertebrates (fishes, amphibians and reptiles to elucidate the height of trophic pyramids in the aftermath of the end-Permian event. The survey of body size was done by compiling maximum standard lengths for the bony fishes and some cartilaginous fishes, and total size (estimates for the tetrapods. The distribution and size spectra of the latter are difficult to assess because of preservation artifacts and are thus mostly discussed qualitatively. The data nevertheless demonstrate that no significant size increase of predators is observable from the Early Triassic to the Anisian, as would be expected from the prolonged and stepwise trophic recovery model. The data further indicate that marine ecosystems characterized by multiple trophic levels existed from the earliest Early Triassic onwards. However, a major change in the taxonomic composition of predatory guilds occurred less than two million years after the end-Permian extinction event, in which a transition from fish/amphibian to fish/reptile-dominated higher trophic levels within ecosystems became

  14. Predation cues rather than resource availability promote cryptic behaviour in a habitat-forming sea urchin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spyksma, Arie J P; Taylor, Richard B; Shears, Nick T

    2017-03-01

    It is well known that predators often influence the foraging behaviour of prey through the so-called "fear effect". However, it is also possible that predators could change prey behaviour indirectly by altering the prey's food supply through a trophic cascade. The predator-sea urchin-kelp trophic cascade is widely assumed to be driven by the removal of sea urchins by predators, but changes in sea urchin behaviour in response to predators or increased food availability could also play an important role. We tested whether increased crevice occupancy by herbivorous sea urchins in the presence of abundant predatory fishes and lobsters is a response to the increased risk of predation, or an indirect response to higher kelp abundances. Inside two New Zealand marine reserves with abundant predators and kelp, individuals of the sea urchin Evechinus chloroticus were rarer and remained cryptic (i.e. found in crevices) to larger sizes than on adjacent fished coasts where predators and kelp are rare. In a mesocosm experiment, cryptic behaviour was induced by simulated predation (the addition of crushed conspecifics), but the addition of food in the form of drift kelp did not induce cryptic behaviour. These findings demonstrate that the 'fear' of predators is more important than food availability in promoting sea urchin cryptic behaviour and suggest that both density- and behaviourally mediated interactions are important in the predator-sea urchin-kelp trophic cascade.

  15. Vertical Distribution of Daily Migrating Mesopelagic Fish in Respect to Nocturnal Lights

    KAUST Repository

    Prihartato, Perdana

    2014-12-01

    The nighttime distribution of vertically migrating mesopelagic fish in relation to nocturnal light was studied during a circumglobal survey, in the Red Sea, and in a fjord at high latitude. The study was based on data derived from ship borne echo sounders (circumglobal and the Red Sea) as well as using upward looking echo sounders mounted on the bottom (Masfjorden, Norway). We also applied a numerical model for analyzing diel vertical migration patterns. The effect of the lunar cycle was the focus in studies at low latitudes, while seasonal changes in nocturnal light climate was in focus at high latitude. Lunar phase significantly affected the distribution of mesopelagic fish at the global scale and in the Red Sea. During nights near full moon, scattering layers of mesopelagic fish distributed deeper than during darker phases of the moon. At high latitude, mesopelagic fish switched its behavior along with seasonal changes in nocturnal lights. In autumn, the population of the studied fish (Maurolicus mueleri) formed separated layers. Juveniles performed normal diel vertical migration followed by midnight sinking, with midnight sinking mainly related to temperature minima and also for avoiding predators. Meanwhile the adults did not migrate vertically, reducing foraging but increasing the adult survival. From late winter to mid-Spring, interrupted ascents behavior was noted in the afternoon. Predator avoidance, satiation, and finding temperature optimum might be the reason behind interrupted ascents. At lighter nights in mid-summer, M. muelleri took on schooling behavior, likely as an anti-predator behavior permitting access to the upper waters in the absence of darkness.

  16. Invasion and predation in aquatic ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judith S. WEIS

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available This article reviews biological invasions in which predation (or its absence plays a major role in the success of the invader. Examples are described in which the invader out-competes native species for the same food, and cases in which the invader consumes valued native species. In many instances, better predator avoidance by the invasive species or the absence of predators in the new habitat contributes to the success of the invaders; in other cases native or introduced predators appear to be able to keep the invasive species in check. A relatively new management approach in the US is the idea of adding another trophic level – to have humans act as the predators and consume the invasive species. This approach is being utilized in Florida and throughout the Caribbean against the lionfish, but could be extended to other fishes, as well as to various invasive crustaceans and mollusks. This idea is controversial, and current regulations prohibiting the possession of individuals of the invasive species (e.g., mitten crabs or snakefish would preclude the development of a fishery for them [Current Zoology 57 (5: 613–624, 2011].

  17. Planktivorous feeding in calm and turbulent environments, with emphasis on copepods

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kiørboe, Thomas; Saiz, E.

    1995-01-01

    Turbulence may enhance contact rates between planktonic predators and their prey. We formulate simple and general models of prey encounter rates, taking into account the behaviours and motility patterns of both prey and predator as well as turbulent fluid motion. Using these models we determine...... the levels of turbulence (as dissipation rate) at which ambient fluid motion is important in enhancing prey encounter rates for various types of predators (e.g, ambush and cruise predators, suspension feeders). Generally, turbulence has the largest effect on prey encounters for predators with low motility...... and long reaction distances. Also, turbulence is most important for meso-sized (mm to cm) predators and insignificant for smaller and larger predators. The effect of turbulence on copepods is specifically examined. For copepods that establish feeding currents, turbulence is of minor importance; for ambush...

  18. Status and future of Lake Huron fish communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ebener, M.P.; Johnson, J.E.; Reid, D.M.; Payne, N.P.; Argyle, R.L.; Wright, G.M.; Krueger, K.; Baker, J.P.; Morse, T.; Weise, J.; Munawar, M.; Edsall, T.; Leach, J.

    1995-01-01

    In 1993, fishery management agencies with jurisdiction over Lake Huron fish populations developed draft fish community objectives in response to the Joint Strategic Plan for Management of Great Lakes Fisheries. The Joint Strategic Plan charged the Great Lakes Fishery Commission sponsored Lake Huron Committee to define objectives for what the fish community of Lake Huron should look like in the future, and to develop means for measuring progress toward the objectives. The overall management objective for Lake Huron is to 'over the next two decades restore an ecologically balanced fish community dominated by top predators and consisting largely of self-sustaining, indigenous and naturalized species and capable of sustaining annual harvests of 8.9 million kg'. This paper represents the first attempt at consolidating current biological information from different management agencies on a lake-wide basis for the purpose of assessing the current status and dynamics of Lake Huron fishes.

  19. In situ swimming speed and swimming behaviour of fish feeding on the krill Meganyctiphanes norvegica

    OpenAIRE

    Onsrud, M. S. R.; Kaartvedt, Stein; Breien, M. T.

    2005-01-01

    In situ swimming speed and swimming behaviour of dielly migrating planktivorous fish were studied at a 120-m-deep location. Acoustic target tracking was performed using a hull-mounted transducer and submersible transducers located on the sea bottom and free hanging in the water column. The original data displayed a relationship between distance to transducer and swimming speed. A simplistic smoother applied during post-processing, appeared to break this relationship. Target tracki...

  20. Humans as predators: an overview of predation strategies of hunters with contrasting motivational drivers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fredrik Dalerum

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Predator-prey theory suggests that generalist predators are linked to demographic stability of prey whereas specialists are destabilizing. We overview the demographic consequences of different predation strategies and hypothesize that subsistence hunting occurs opportunistically, persecution hunters behave like specialist predators, and recreational hunters behave like generalist predators. Under this hypothesis, persecution hunting would have destabilizing effects, whereas the effects of subsistence and recreational hunting would be neutral or stabilizing. We found poor empirical support for this hypothesis, but there was scarce empirical data. Recreational hunters mainly hunted opportunistically and hunting as managed persecution followed a type III functional response, i.e. with low hunting intensity at low game abundances and a switch to an increased intensity at some level of abundance. We suggest that recreational hunters have limited destabilizing effects on game populations and that hunting may be an ineffective way of complete the removal of invasive species. We urge for further studies quantifying the responses of hunters to game abundances, in particular studies evaluating the responses of subsistence hunters and illegal persecution.

  1. Development of a Natural Rearing System to Improve Supplemental Fish Quality, 1996-1998 Progress Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Maynard, Desmond J.

    2001-09-13

    This report covers the 1996-1998 Natural Rearing Enhancement System (NATURES) research for increasing hatchery salmon postrelease survival and producing fish with more wild-like behavior, physiology, and morphology prior to release. Experiments were conducted evaluating automatic subsurface feeders; natural diets; exercise systems; seminatural raceway habitat enriched with cover, structure, and substrate; and predator avoidance conditioning for hatchery salmonids. Automatic subsurface feed delivery systems did not affect chinook salmon depth distribution or vulnerability to avian predators. Live-food diets only marginally improved the ability of chinook salmon to capture prey in stream enclosures. A prototype exercise system that can be retrofitted to raceways was developed, however, initial testing indicated that severe amounts of exercise may increase in culture mortality. Rearing chinook salmon in seminatural raceway habitat with gravel substrate, woody debris structure, and overhead cover improved coloration and postrelease survival without impacting in-culture health or survival. Steelhead fry reared in enriched environments with structure, cover, and point source feeders dominated and outcompeted conventionally reared fish. Exposing chinook salmon to caged predators increased their postrelease survival. Chinook salmon showed an antipredator response to chemical stimuli from injured conspecifics and exhibited acquired predator recognition following exposure to paired predator-prey stimuli. The report also includes the 1997 Natural Rearing System Workshop proceedings.

  2. Effects of turbidity on predation vulnerability of juvenile humpback chub to rainbow and brown trout

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward, David L.; Morton-Starner, Rylan; Vaage, Benjamin M.

    2016-01-01

    Predation on juvenile native fish by introduced rainbow trout Oncorhynchus mykiss and brown trout Salmo trutta is considered a significant threat to the persistence of endangered humpback chub Gila cypha in the Colorado River in Grand Canyon. Diet studies of rainbow and brown trout in Glen and Grand canyons indicate that these species eat native fish, but impacts are difficult to assess because predation vulnerability is highly variable depending on the physical conditions under which the predation interactions take place. We conducted laboratory experiments to evaluate how short-term predation vulnerability of juvenile humpback chub changes in response to changes in turbidity. In overnight laboratory trials, we exposed hatchery-reared juvenile humpback chub and bonytail Gila elegans (a surrogate for humpback chub) to adult rainbow and brown trout at turbidities ranging from 0 to 1,000 formazin nephlometric units. We found that turbidity as low as 25 formazin nephlometric units significantly reduced predation vulnerability of bonytail to rainbow trout and led to a 36% mean increase in survival (24–60%, 95% CI) compared to trials conducted in clear water. Predation vulnerability of bonytail to brown trout at 25 formazin nephlometric units also decreased with increasing turbidity and resulted in a 25% increase in survival on average (17–32%, 95% CI). Understanding the effects of predation by trout on endangered humpback chub is important when evaluating management options aimed at preservation of native fishes in Grand Canyon National Park. This research suggests that relatively small changes in turbidity may be sufficient to alter predation dynamics of trout on humpback chub in the mainstem Colorado River and that turbidity manipulation may warrant further investigation as a fisheries management tool.

  3. Effects of fish density and river fertilization on algal standing stocks, invertebrates communities, and fish production in an Arctic River

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deegan, Linda A.; Peterson, B.J.; Golden, H.; McIvor, C.C.; Miller, M.C.

    1997-01-01

    This study examined the relative importance of bottom-up and top-down controls of an arctic stream food web by simultaneous manipulation of the top predator and nutrient availability. We created a two-step trophic system (algae to insects) by removal of the top predator (Arctic grayling, Thymallus arcticus) in fertilized and control stream reaches. Fish abundance was also increased 10 times to examine the effect of high fish density on stream ecosystem dynamics and fish. We measured the response of epilithic algae, benthic and drifting insects, and fish to nutrient enrichment and to changes in fish density. Insect grazers had little effect on algae and fish had little effect on insects. In both the control and fertilized reaches, fish growth, energy storage, and reproductive response of females declined with increased fish density. Fish growth and energy storage were more closely correlated with per capita insect availability than with per capita algal standing stock

  4. A non-digging zoobenthivorous fish attracts two opportunistic predatory fish associates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristina Sazima

    Full Text Available Following behaviour among reef fishes involves mostly a digging nuclear species while foraging, which attracts opportunistic followers preying on the exposed organisms. The flying gurnard Dactylopterus volitans preys on benthic animals, mostly crustaceans and small fishes, scratching and probing the bottom with the inner rays of its pectoral fins. We recorded the flying gurnard being followed by two opportunistic predators, the yellow jack Caranx bartholomaei and the coney Cephalopholis fulva at Fernando de Noronha, off northeast Brazil. Albeit not actually digging the substrate, the flying gurnard acts as a nuclear species by exploring algae tufts and by its wandering near the boulders and ledges, disturbing and flushing out hidden animals which thus become available to predation.

  5. The hydrodynamics of predator-prey interactions in zebrafish

    Science.gov (United States)

    McHenry, Matthew; Soto, Alberto; Carrillo, Andres; Byron, Margaret

    2017-11-01

    Hydrodynamics govern the behavior of fishes when they operate as predators or prey. In addition to the role of fluid forces in propulsion, fishes relay on flow stimuli to sense a predatory threat and to localize palatable prey. We have performed a series of experiments on zebrafish (Danio rerio) that aim to resolve the major factors that determine whether prey survive an encounter with a predator. Zebrafish serve as a model system in this pursuit because the adults prey on larvae of the same species and the larvae are often successful in evading the attacks of the adults. We use a combination of theoretical and experimental approaches to resolve the behavioral algorithms and kinematics that determined the outcome of these interactions. In this context, the hydrodynamics of intermediate Reynolds numbers largely determines the range of flow stimuli and the limits to locomotor performance at dictate prey survival. These principles have the potential to apply to a broad diversity of fishes and other aquatic animals. ONR: N00014-15-1-2249.

  6. Inability to demonstrate fish-to-fish transmission of Ichthyophonus from laboratory infected Pacific herring Clupea pallasii to naïve conspecifics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregg, J L; Grady, C A; Friedman, C S; Hershberger, P K

    2012-06-13

    The parasite Ichthyophonus is enzootic in many marine fish populations of the northern Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Forage fishes are a likely source of infection for higher trophic level predators; however, the processes that maintain Ichthyophonus in forage fish populations (primarily clupeids) are not well understood. Lack of an identified intermediate host has led to the convenient hypothesis that the parasite can be maintained within populations of schooling fishes by waterborne fish-to-fish transmission. To test this hypothesis we established Ichthyophonus infections in Age-1 and young-of-the-year (YOY) Pacific herring Clupea pallasii (Valenciennes) via intraperitoneal (IP) injection and cohabitated these donors with naïve conspecifics (sentinels) in the laboratory. IP injections established infection in 75 to 84% of donor herring, and this exposure led to clinical disease and mortality in the YOY cohort. However, after cohabitation for 113 d no infections were detected in naïve sentinels. These data do not preclude the possibility of fish-to-fish transmission, but they do suggest that other transmission processes are necessary to maintain Ichthyophonus in wild Pacific herring populations.

  7. Effects of fish removal in the Furnas Lake, Azores

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bio, A.

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available The Furnas Lake is a small volcanic, monomitic and increasingly eutrophised water body. Next to agricultural nutrient inputs, high densities of herbivorous fish are thought to contribute to high levels of turbidity in the lake, through zooplankton consumption and re suspension of the nutrients accumulated in the sediment. According to the alternative state hypothesis a shift from turbid to clear water conditions is favoured by reduction of nutrient concentrations, increased light availability and reduction of planktivorous and benthos-feeding fish stock. To improve water quality in the Furnas Lake, a substantial part of the bottom-feeding fish population (62% of the estimated common carp population, Cyprinus carpio, and 5% of the estimated roach population, Rutilus rutilus was removed. Effects of fish removal on turbidity and associated trophic state were analysed next to post-manipulation chlorophyll a concentration, zooplankton and macrophytes densities. Results suggest that fish removal was not enough to change lake conditions towards a lasting clear state dominated by macrophytes. Excessive nutrient load, in water and sediments, nutrient input from the lake basin and fish recruitment causing enhanced zooplankton grazing are appointed causes. Any further biomanipulation efforts should be associated to nutrient reduction; and continued monitoring of water quality, fish stock, macrophytes and zooplankton is needed.

  8. Chaoborus and gasterosteus anti-predator responses in Daphnia pulex are mediated by independent cholinergic and gabaergic neuronal signals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Linda C Weiss

    Full Text Available Many prey species evolved inducible defense strategies that protect effectively against predation threats. Especially the crustacean Daphnia emerged as a model system for studying the ecology and evolution of inducible defenses. Daphnia pulex e.g. shows different phenotypic adaptations against vertebrate and invertebrate predators. In response to the invertebrate phantom midge larvae Chaoborus (Diptera D. pulex develops defensive morphological defenses (neckteeth. Cues originating from predatory fish result in life history changes in which resources are allocated from somatic growth to reproduction. While there are hints that responses against Chaoborus cues are transmitted involving cholinergic neuronal pathways, nothing is known about the neurophysiology underlying the transmission of fish related cues. We investigated the neurophysiological basis underlying the activation of inducible defenses in D. pulex using induction assays with the invertebrate predator Chaoborus and the three-spined stickleback Gasterosteus aculeatus. Predator-specific cues were combined with neuro-effective substances that stimulated or inhibited the cholinergic and gabaergic nervous system. We show that cholinergic-dependent pathways are involved in the perception and transmission of Chaoborus cues, while GABA was not involved. Thus, the cholinergic nervous system independently mediates the development of morphological defenses in response to Chaoborus cues. In contrast, only the inhibitory effect of GABA significantly influence fish-induced life history changes, while the application of cholinergic stimulants had no effect in combination with fish related cues. Our results show that cholinergic stimulation mediates signal transmission of Chaoborus cues leading to morphological defenses. Fish cues, which are responsible for predator-specific life history adaptations involve gabaergic control. Our study shows that both pathways are independent and thus potentially

  9. Effects of ocean acidification on learning in coral reef fishes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maud C O Ferrari

    Full Text Available Ocean acidification has the potential to cause dramatic changes in marine ecosystems. Larval damselfish exposed to concentrations of CO(2 predicted to occur in the mid- to late-century show maladaptive responses to predator cues. However, there is considerable variation both within and between species in CO(2 effects, whereby some individuals are unaffected at particular CO(2 concentrations while others show maladaptive responses to predator odour. Our goal was to test whether learning via chemical or visual information would be impaired by ocean acidification and ultimately, whether learning can mitigate the effects of ocean acidification by restoring the appropriate responses of prey to predators. Using two highly efficient and widespread mechanisms for predator learning, we compared the behaviour of pre-settlement damselfish Pomacentrus amboinensis that were exposed to 440 µatm CO(2 (current day levels or 850 µatm CO(2, a concentration predicted to occur in the ocean before the end of this century. We found that, regardless of the method of learning, damselfish exposed to elevated CO(2 failed to learn to respond appropriately to a common predator, the dottyback, Pseudochromis fuscus. To determine whether the lack of response was due to a failure in learning or rather a short-term shift in trade-offs preventing the fish from displaying overt antipredator responses, we conditioned 440 or 700 µatm-CO(2 fish to learn to recognize a dottyback as a predator using injured conspecific cues, as in Experiment 1. When tested one day post-conditioning, CO(2 exposed fish failed to respond to predator odour. When tested 5 days post-conditioning, CO(2 exposed fish still failed to show an antipredator response to the dottyback odour, despite the fact that both control and CO(2-treated fish responded to a general risk cue (injured conspecific cues. These results indicate that exposure to CO(2 may alter the cognitive ability of juvenile fish and render

  10. Anthropogenic noise compromises the anti-predator behaviour of the European seabass, Dicentrarchus labrax (L.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spiga, Ilaria; Aldred, Nicholas; Caldwell, Gary S

    2017-09-15

    Anthropogenic noise is a significant pollutant of the world's oceans, affecting behavioural and physiological traits in a range of species, including anti-predator behaviours. Using the open field test, we investigated the effects of recordings of piling and drilling noise on the anti-predator behaviour of captive juvenile European seabass in response to a visual stimulus (a predatory mimic). The impulsive nature of piling noise triggered a reflexive startle response, which contrasted the behaviour elicited by the continuous drilling noise. When presented with the predatory mimic, fish exposed to both piling and drilling noise explored the experimental arena more extensively than control fish exposed to ambient noise. Fish under drilling and piling conditions also exhibited reduced predator inspection behaviour. Piling and drilling noise induced stress as measured by ventilation rate. This study provides further evidence that the behaviour and physiology of European seabass is significantly affected by exposure to elevated noise levels. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  11. Intraguild predation reduces redundancy of predator species in multiple predator assemblage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffen, Blaine D; Byers, James E

    2006-07-01

    1. Interference between predator species frequently decreases predation rates, lowering the risk of predation for shared prey. However, such interference can also occur between conspecific predators. 2. Therefore, to understand the importance of predator biodiversity and the degree that predator species can be considered functionally interchangeable, we determined the degree of additivity and redundancy of predators in multiple- and single-species combinations. 3. We show that interference between two invasive species of predatory crabs, Carcinus maenas and Hemigrapsus sanguineus, reduced the risk of predation for shared amphipod prey, and had redundant per capita effects in most multiple- and single-species predator combinations. 4. However, when predator combinations with the potential for intraguild predation were examined, predator interference increased and predator redundancy decreased. 5. Our study indicates that trophic structure is important in determining how the effects of predator species combine and demonstrates the utility of determining the redundancy, as well as the additivity, of multiple predator species.

  12. Changes in the North Sea fish community: evidence of indirect effects of fishing?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Daan, N.; Gislason, Henrik; Pope, J.

    2005-01-01

    , but such changes may simply reflect the cumulative, direct effects of fishing through selective removal of large individuals. If there is resilience in a fish community towards fishing, we may expect increases in specific components, for instance as a consequence of an associated reduction in predation and....... Taking average fishing mortality of assessed commercial species as an index of exploitation rate of the fish community, it appears that fishing effort reached its maximum in the mid-1980s and has declined slightly since. If the observed changes in the community are caused by indirect effects of fishing...

  13. Development of a natural rearing system to improve supplemental fish quality: 1996-1998: final report; TOPICAL

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Maynard, Desmond J.

    2001-01-01

    This report covers the 1996-1998 Natural Rearing Enhancement System (NATURES) research for increasing hatchery salmon postrelease survival and producing fish with more wild-like behavior, physiology, and morphology prior to release. Experiments were conducted evaluating automatic subsurface feeders; natural diets; exercise systems; seminatural raceway habitat enriched with cover, structure, and substrate; and predator avoidance conditioning for hatchery salmonids. Automatic subsurface feed delivery systems did not affect chinook salmon depth distribution or vulnerability to avian predators. Live-food diets only marginally improved the ability of chinook salmon to capture prey in stream enclosures. A prototype exercise system that can be retrofitted to raceways was developed, however, initial testing indicated that severe amounts of exercise may increase in culture mortality. Rearing chinook salmon in seminatural raceway habitat with gravel substrate, woody debris structure, and overhead cover improved coloration and postrelease survival without impacting in-culture health or survival. Steelhead fry reared in enriched environments with structure, cover, and point source feeders dominated and outcompeted conventionally reared fish. Exposing chinook salmon to caged predators increased their postrelease survival. Chinook salmon showed an antipredator response to chemical stimuli from injured conspecifics and exhibited acquired predator recognition following exposure to paired predator-prey stimuli. The report also includes the 1997 Natural Rearing System Workshop proceedings

  14. Ocean acidification alters predator behaviour and reduces predation rate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watson, Sue-Ann; Fields, Jennifer B; Munday, Philip L

    2017-02-01

    Ocean acidification poses a range of threats to marine invertebrates; however, the emerging and likely widespread effects of rising carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) levels on marine invertebrate behaviour are still little understood. Here, we show that ocean acidification alters and impairs key ecological behaviours of the predatory cone snail Conus marmoreus Projected near-future seawater CO 2 levels (975 µatm) increased activity in this coral reef molluscivore more than threefold (from less than 4 to more than 12 mm min -1 ) and decreased the time spent buried to less than one-third when compared with the present-day control conditions (390 µatm). Despite increasing activity, elevated CO 2 reduced predation rate during predator-prey interactions with control-treated humpbacked conch, Gibberulus gibberulus gibbosus; 60% of control predators successfully captured and consumed their prey, compared with only 10% of elevated CO 2 predators. The alteration of key ecological behaviours of predatory invertebrates by near-future ocean acidification could have potentially far-reaching implications for predator-prey interactions and trophic dynamics in marine ecosystems. Combined evidence that the behaviours of both species in this predator-prey relationship are altered by elevated CO 2 suggests food web interactions and ecosystem structure will become increasingly difficult to predict as ocean acidification advances over coming decades. © 2017 The Author(s).

  15. Impacts of rising sea temperature on krill increase risks for predators in the Scotia Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, Simeon L.; Hinke, Jefferson T.; Phillips, Tony; Watters, George M.

    2018-01-01

    Climate change is a threat to marine ecosystems and the services they provide, and reducing fishing pressure is one option for mitigating the overall consequences for marine biota. We used a minimally realistic ecosystem model to examine how projected effects of ocean warming on the growth of Antarctic krill, Euphausia superba, might affect populations of krill and dependent predators (whales, penguins, seals, and fish) in the Scotia Sea. We also investigated the potential to mitigate depletion risk for predators by curtailing krill fishing at different points in the 21st century. The projected effects of ocean warming on krill biomass were strongest in the northern Scotia Sea, with a ≥40% decline in the mass of individual krill. Projections also suggest a 25% chance that krill biomass will fall below an established depletion threshold (75% of its unimpacted level), with consequent risks for some predator populations, especially penguins. Average penguin abundance declined by up to 30% of its unimpacted level, with up to a 50% chance of falling below the depletion threshold. Simulated krill fishing at currently permitted harvest rates further increased risks for depletion, and stopping fishing offset the increased risks associated with ocean warming in our model to some extent. These results varied by location and species group. Risk reductions at smaller spatial scales also differed from those at the regional level, which suggests that some predator populations may be more vulnerable than others to future changes in krill biomass. However, impacts on predators did not always map directly to those for krill. Our findings indicate the importance of identifying vulnerable marine populations and targeting protection measures at appropriate spatial scales, and the potential for spatially-structured management to avoid aggravating risks associated with rising ocean temperatures. This may help balance tradeoffs among marine ecosystem services in an uncertain future

  16. Competition and Dispersal in Predator-Prey Waves

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Savill, N.J.; Hogeweg, P.

    1998-01-01

    Dispersing predators and prey can exhibit complex spatio-temporal wave-like patterns if the interactions between them cause oscillatory dynamics. We study the effect of these predator- prey density waves on the competition between prey populations and between predator popu- lations with different

  17. Interactions between fishes and the structure of fish communities in Dutch shallow, eutrophic lakes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lammens, E.

    1986-01-01

    This thesis describes the structure of fish communities in Tjeukemeer (21 km 2) and some other surrounding very eutrophic lakes and emphasizes the interactions of the fishes with each other and their food organisms (predation and (exploitative) competition). It is a compilation of seven

  18. Stress triangle: do introduced predators exert indirect costs on native predators and prey?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer R Anson

    Full Text Available Non-consumptive effects of predators on each other and on prey populations often exceed the effects of direct predation. These effects can arise from fear responses elevating glucocorticoid (GC hormone levels (predator stress hypothesis or from increased vigilance that reduces foraging efficiency and body condition (predator sensitive foraging hypothesis; both responses can lead to immunosuppression and increased parasite loads. Non-consumptive effects of invasive predators have been little studied, even though their direct impacts on local species are usually greater than those of their native counterparts. To address this issue, we explored the non-consumptive effects of the invasive red fox Vulpes vulpes on two native species in eastern Australia: a reptilian predator, the lace monitor Varanus varius and a marsupial, the ringtail possum Pseudocheirus peregrinus. In particular, we tested predictions derived from the above two hypotheses by comparing the basal glucocorticoid levels, foraging behaviour, body condition and haemoparasite loads of both native species in areas with and without fox suppression. Lace monitors showed no GC response or differences in haemoparasite loads but were more likely to trade safety for higher food rewards, and had higher body condition, in areas of fox suppression than in areas where foxes remained abundant. In contrast, ringtails showed no physiological or behavioural differences between fox-suppressed and control areas. Predator sensitive foraging is a non-consumptive cost for lace monitors in the presence of the fox and most likely represents a response to competition. The ringtail's lack of response to the fox potentially represents complete naiveté or strong and rapid selection to the invasive predator. We suggest evolutionary responses are often overlooked in interactions between native and introduced species, but must be incorporated if we are to understand the suite of forces that shape community

  19. How can dolphins recognize fish according to their echoes? A statistical analysis of fish echoes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yossi Yovel

    Full Text Available Echo-based object classification is a fundamental task of animals that use a biosonar system. Dolphins and porpoises should be able to rely on echoes to discriminate a predator from a prey or to select a desired prey from an undesired object. Many studies have shown that dolphins and porpoises can discriminate between objects according to their echoes. All of these studies however, used unnatural objects that can be easily characterized in human terminologies (e.g., metallic spheres, disks, cylinders. In this work, we collected real fish echoes from many angles of acquisition using a sonar system that mimics the emission properties of dolphins and porpoises. We then tested two alternative statistical approaches in classifying these echoes. Our results suggest that fish species can be classified according to echoes returning from porpoise- and dolphin-like signals. These results suggest how dolphins and porpoises can classify fish based on their echoes and provide some insight as to which features might enable the classification.

  20. Developing a predation index and evaluating ways to reduce salmonid losses to predation in the Columbia River basin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nigro, A.A.

    1990-12-01

    We report our results of studies to develop a predation index and evaluate ways to reduce juvenile salmonid losses to predation in the Columbia River Basin. Study objectives of each were: develop an index to estimate predation losses of juvenile salmonids (Oncorhynchus spp) in reservoirs throughout the Columbia River Basin, describe the relationships among predator-caused mortality of juvenile salmonids and physical and biological variables, examine the feasibility of developing bounty, commercial or recreational fisheries on northern squawfish (Ptychocheilus oregonensis) and develop a plan to evaluate the efficacy of predator control fisheries; determine the economic feasibility of developing bounty and commercial fisheries for northern squawfish, assist ODFW with evaluating the economic feasibility of recreational fisheries for northern squawfish and assess the economic feasibility of utilizing northern squawfish, carp (Cyprinus carpio) and suckers (Castostomus spp) in multispecies fisheries; evaluate commercial technology of various fishing methods for harvesting northern squawfish in Columbia River reservoirs and field test the effectiveness of selected harvesting systems, holding facilities and transportation systems; and modify the existing Columbia River Ecosystem Model (CREM) to include processes necessary to evaluate effects of removing northern squawfish on their population size structure and abundance, document the ecological processes, mathematical equations and computer (FORTRAN) programming of the revised version of CREM and conduct systematic analyses of various predator removal scenarios, using revised CREM to generate the simulations. Individual reports are indexed separately

  1. Senses & Sensibility: Predator-Prey Experiments Reveal How Fish Perceive & Respond to Threats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Jason; Holloway, Barbara; Ketcham, Elizabeth; Long, John

    2008-01-01

    The predator-prey relationship is one of the most recognizable and well-studied animal relationships. One of the more striking aspects of this relationship is the differential natural selection pressure placed on predators and their prey. This differential pressure results from differing costs of failure, the so-called life-dinner principle. If a…

  2. Shark predation on migrating adult american eels (Anguilla rostrata) in the Gulf of St. Lawrence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Béguer-Pon, Mélanie; Benchetrit, José; Castonguay, Martin

    2012-01-01

    to identify the eel predators, we compared their vertical migratory behavior with those of satellite-tagged porbeagle shark and bluefin tuna, the only endothermic fishes occurring non-marginally in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. We accurately distinguished between tuna and shark by using the behavioral criteria....... Surprisingly, of the seven tags that successfully transmitted archived data, six were ingested by warm-gutted predators, as observed by a sudden increase in water temperature. Gut temperatures were in the range of 20 to 25°C--too cold for marine mammals but within the range of endothermic fish. In order...... generated by comparing the diving behavior of these two species with those of our unknown predators. Depth profile characteristics of most eel predators more closely resembled those of sharks than those of tuna. During the first days following tagging, all eels remained in surface waters and did not exhibit...

  3. Trophic Interactions in the Baltic Sea: Predation on cod eggs by clupeids

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Neumann, Viola

    datasets on stomach contents of sprat and herring, ambient hydrographic conditions, ichthyoplankton distribution and abundance as well as predator distribution and abundance from hydroacoustic data for the 1990s and 2004-2008. Changes in diet composition of sprat and herring were investigated, including....... As a next step, predation pressure was quantified separately for egg development stages, both for cod and sprat (Paper III). Furthermore, ichthyoplankton prey selection by clupeids was investigated, with specific focus of predation on different fish egg species and development stages, to improve our...

  4. Modelling the attack success of planktonic predators: patterns and mechanisms of prey size selectivity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Caparroy, P.; Thygesen, Uffe Høgsbro; Visser, Andre

    2000-01-01

    of being captured. By combining the attack success model with previously published hydrodynamic models of predator and prey perception, we examine how predator foraging behaviour and prey perceptive ability affect the size spectra of encountered and captured copepod prey. We examine food size spectra of (i......) a rheotactic cruising predator, (ii) a suspension-feeding hovering copepod and (iii) a larval fish. For rheotactic predators such as carnivorous copepods, a central assumption of the model is that attack is triggered by prey escape reaction, which in turn depends on the deformation rate of the fluid created...

  5. HMSRP Hawaiian Monk Seal Shark Predation Mitigation Fishing Excursions

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Fishing excursion information, including summary tables of: Fishing/culling efforts, including date, islets, latitude/longitude, fishing method, soak times, culled...

  6. Seasonal and interannual effects of hypoxia on fish habitat quality in central Lake Erie

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arend, Kristin K.; Beletsky, Dmitry; DePinto, Joseph; Ludsin, Stuart A.; Roberts, James J.; Rucinski, Daniel K.; Scavia, Donald; Schwab, David J.; Höök, Tomas O.

    2011-01-01

    1. Hypoxia occurs seasonally in many stratified coastal marine and freshwater ecosystems when bottom dissolved oxygen (DO) concentrations are depleted below 2–3 mg O2 L-1. 2. We evaluated the effects of hypoxia on fish habitat quality in the central basin of Lake Erie from 1987 to 2005, using bioenergetic growth rate potential (GRP) as a proxy for habitat quality. We compared the effect of hypoxia on habitat quality of (i) rainbow smelt, Osmerus mordax mordax Mitchill (young-of-year, YOY, and adult), a cold-water planktivore, (ii) emerald shiner, Notropis atherinoides Rafinesque (adult), a warm-water planktivore, (iii) yellow perch, Perca flavescens Mitchill (YOY and adult), a cool-water benthopelagic omnivore and (iv) round goby Neogobius melanostomus Pallas (adult) a eurythermal benthivore. Annual thermal and DO profiles were generated from 1D thermal and DO hydrodynamics models developed for Lake Erie’s central basin. 3. Hypoxia occurred annually, typically from mid-July to mid-October, which spatially and temporally overlaps with otherwise high benthic habitat quality. Hypoxia reduced the habitat quality across fish species and life stages, but the magnitude of the reduction varied both among and within species because of the differences in tolerance to low DO levels and warm-water temperatures. 4. Across years, trends in habitat quality mirrored trends in phosphorus concentration and water column oxygen demand in central Lake Erie. The per cent reduction in habitat quality owing to hypoxia was greatest for adult rainbow smelt and round goby (mean: -35%), followed by adult emerald shiner (mean: -12%), YOY rainbow smelt (mean: -10%) and YOY and adult yellow perch (mean: -8.5%). 5. Our results highlight the importance of differential spatiotemporally interactive effects of DO and temperature on relative fish habitat quality and quantity. These effects have the potential to influence the performance of individual fish species as well as population dynamics

  7. A test of maternal programming of offspring stress response to predation risk in threespine sticklebacks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mommer, Brett C; Bell, Alison M

    2013-10-02

    Non-genetic maternal effects are widespread across taxa and challenge our traditional understanding of inheritance. Maternal experience with predators, for example, can have lifelong consequences for offspring traits, including fitness. Previous work in threespine sticklebacks showed that females exposed to simulated predation risk produced eggs with higher cortisol content and offspring with altered anti-predator behavior. However, it is unknown whether this maternal effect is mediated via the offspring glucocorticoid stress response and if it is retained over the entire lifetime of offspring. Therefore, we tested the hypothesis that maternal exposure to simulated predation risk has long-lasting effects on the cortisol response to simulated predation risk in stickleback offspring. We measured circulating concentrations of cortisol before (baseline), 15 min after, and 60 min after exposure to a simulated predation risk. We compared adult offspring of predator-exposed mothers and control mothers in two different social environments (alone or in a group). Relative to baseline, offspring plasma cortisol was highest 15 min after exposure to simulated predation risk and decreased after 60 min. Offspring of predator-exposed mothers differed in the cortisol response to simulated predation risk compared to offspring of control mothers. In general, females had higher cortisol than males, and fish in a group had lower cortisol than fish that were by themselves. The buffering effect of the social environment did not differ between maternal treatments or between males and females. Altogether the results show that while a mother's experience with simulated predation risk might affect the physiological response of her adult offspring to a predator, sex and social isolation have much larger effects on the stress response to predation risk in sticklebacks. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Food webs and fishing affect parasitism of the sea urchin Eucidaris galapagensis in the Galápagos

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sonnenholzner, Jorge I.; Lafferty, Kevin D.; Ladah, Lydia B.

    2011-01-01

    In the Galápagos Islands, two eulimid snails parasitize the common pencil sea urchin, Eucidaris galapagensis. Past work in the Galápagos suggests that fishing reduces lobster and fish densities and, due to this relaxation of predation pressure, indirectly increases urchin densities, creating the potential for complex indirect interactions between fishing and parasitic snails. To measure indirect effects of fishing on these parasitic snails, we investigated the spatial relationships among urchins, parasitic snails, commensal crabs, and large urchin predators (hogfish and lobsters). Parasitic snails had higher densities at sites where urchins were abundant, probably due to increased resource availability. Commensal crabs that shelter under urchin spines, particularly the endemic Mithrax nodosus, preyed on the parasitic snails in aquaria, and snails were less abundant at field sites where these crabs were common. In aquaria, hogfish and lobsters readily ate crabs, but crabs were protected from predation under urchin spines, leading to a facultative mutualism between commensal crabs and urchins. In the field, fishing appeared to indirectly increase the abundance of urchins and their commensal crabs by reducing predation pressure from fish and lobsters. Fished sites had fewer snails per urchin, probably due to increased predation from commensal crabs. However, because fished sites also tended to have more urchins, there was no significant net effect of fishing on the number of snails per square meter. These results suggest that fishing can have complex indirect effects on parasites by altering food webs.

  9. Development of a Natural Rearing System to Improve Supplemental Fish Quality, 1991-1995 Progress Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Maynard, Desmond J.; Flagg, Thomas A.; Mahnken, Conrad V.W.

    1996-08-01

    In this report, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), in collaboration with the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA), the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW), and the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), presents research findings and guidelines for development and evaluation of innovative culture techniques to increase postrelease survival of hatchery fish. The Natural Rearing Enhancement System (NATURES) described in this report is a collection of experimental approaches designed to produce hatchery-reared chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) that exhibit wild-like behavior, physiology, and morphology. The NATURES culture research for salmonids included multiple tests to develop techniques such as: raceways equipped with cover, structure, and natural substrates to promote development of proper body camouflage coloration; feed-delivery systems that condition fish to orient to the bottom rather than the surface of the rearing vessel; predator conditioning of fish to train them to avoid predators; and supplementing diets with natural live foods to improve foraging ability. The underlying assumptions are that NATURES will: (1) promote the development of natural cryptic coloration and antipredator behavior; (2) increase postrelease foraging efficiency; (3) improve fish health and condition by alleviating chronic, artificial rearing habitat-induced stress; and (4) reduce potential genetic selection pressures induced by the conventional salmon culture environment. A goal in using NATURES is to provide quality fish for rebuilding depleted natural runs.

  10. Naive Juveniles Are More Likely to Become Breeders after Witnessing Predator Mobbing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griesser, Michael; Suzuki, Toshitaka N

    2017-01-01

    Responding appropriately during the first predatory attack in life is often critical for survival. In many social species, naive juveniles acquire this skill from conspecifics, but its fitness consequences remain virtually unknown. Here we experimentally demonstrate how naive juvenile Siberian jays (Perisoreus infaustus) derive a long-term fitness benefit from witnessing knowledgeable adults mobbing their principal predator, the goshawk (Accipiter gentilis). Siberian jays live in family groups of two to six individuals that also can include unrelated nonbreeders. Field observations showed that Siberian jays encounter predators only rarely, and, indeed, naive juveniles do not respond to predator models when on their own but do when observing other individuals mobbing them. Predator exposure experiments demonstrated that naive juveniles had a substantially higher first-winter survival after observing knowledgeable group members mobbing a goshawk model, increasing their likelihood of acquiring a breeding position later in life. Previous research showed that naive individuals may learn from others how to respond to predators, care for offspring, or choose mates, generally assuming that social learning has long-term fitness consequences without empirical evidence. Our results demonstrate a long-term fitness benefit of vertical social learning for naive individuals in the wild, emphasizing its evolutionary importance in animals, including humans.

  11. Fishing down the largest coral reef fish species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fenner, Douglas

    2014-07-15

    Studies on remote, uninhabited, near-pristine reefs have revealed surprisingly large populations of large reef fish. Locations such as the northwestern Hawaiian Islands, northern Marianas Islands, Line Islands, U.S. remote Pacific Islands, Cocos-Keeling Atoll and Chagos archipelago have much higher reef fish biomass than islands and reefs near people. Much of the high biomass of most remote reef fish communities lies in the largest species, such as sharks, bumphead parrots, giant trevally, and humphead wrasse. Some, such as sharks and giant trevally, are apex predators, but others such as bumphead parrots and humphead wrasse, are not. At many locations, decreases in large reef fish species have been attributed to fishing. Fishing is well known to remove the largest fish first, and a quantitative measure of vulnerability to fishing indicates that large reef fish species are much more vulnerable to fishing than small fish. The removal of large reef fish by fishing parallels the extinction of terrestrial megafauna by early humans. However large reef fish have great value for various ecological roles and for reef tourism. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. System-wide significance of predation on juvenile salmonids in Columbia and Snake River reservoirs and evaluation of predation control measures. Annual report 1993

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gadomski, D.M.; Poe, T.P.

    1994-01-01

    This project had three major goals. The first was to assist the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife with predation indexing as part of an effort to estimate the relative magnitude of juvenile salmonid losses to northern squawfish Ptychocheilus oregonensis in reservoirs throughout the Columbia River Basin. The second goal was to evaluate the northern squawfish control program and test critical assumptions about mid-reservoir predation processes. The final goal was to determine mechanisms underlying northern squawfish recruitment and factors affecting year-class strength

  13. Fish corallivory on a pocilloporid reef and experimental coral responses to predation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palacios, M. M.; Muñoz, C. G.; Zapata, F. A.

    2014-09-01

    This study examined the effects of the Guineafowl pufferfish ( Arothron meleagris), a major corallivore in the Eastern Pacific, on pocilloporid corals on a reef at Gorgona Island, Colombia. Pufferfish occurred at a density of 171.2 individuals ha-1 and fed at a rate of 1.8 bites min-1, which produced a standing bite density of 366.2 bites m-2. We estimate that approximately 15.6 % of the annual pocilloporid carbonate production is removed by the pufferfish population. Examination of the predation effect on individual pocilloporid colonies revealed that although nubbins exposed to corallivory had lower linear growth, they gained similar weight and became thicker than those protected from it. Additionally, colonies with simulated predation injuries (on up to 75 % of branch tips) healed successfully and maintained growth rates similar to those of uninjured colonies. Despite the high corallivore pressure exerted by pufferfish on this reef, we conclude that they have a low destructive impact on Pocillopora colonies as corals can maintain their carbonate production rate while effectively recovering from partial predation. Due to its influence on colony morphology, pufferfish predation may increase environmentally induced morphological variability in Pocillopora.

  14. Mercury and selenium in fishes from the Tapajós River in the Brazilian Amazon: An evaluation of human exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lino, A S; Kasper, D; Guida, Y S; Thomaz, J R; Malm, O

    2018-07-01

    This work aimed to evaluate associated risks of fish consumption to human health, concerning mercury (Hg) and selenium (Se) concentrations in fish species largely consumed in the Tapajós River basin in the Brazilian Amazon. Total mercury (THg), methylmercury (MeHg) and Se concentrations were measured in 129 fish specimens from four sites of the Tapajós River basin. Estimated daily intake (EDI) of Hg and Se were reported regarding fish consumption. EDI were compared with the reference value of provisional tolerable daily intake proposed by the World Health Organization (WHO). Se:Hg ratios and selenium health benefit values (Se HBVs) seem to offer a more comprehensive fish safety model. THg concentrations in fishes ranged from 0.03 to 1.51 μg g -1 of wet weight (w.w.) and MeHg concentrations ranged from 0.02 to 1.44 μg g -1 (w.w.). 80% of the samples were below the value of Hg recommended by the WHO for human consumption (0.5 μg g -1 w.w.). However, Hg EDI exceeded the dose suggested by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (0.1 μg kg -1  day -1 ), due to the large level of fish consumption in that area. Se concentrations in fishes ranged from 0.02 to 0.44 μg g -1 w.w. An inverse pattern was observed between Hg and Se concentrations in the trophic chain (highest levels of Se in the lowest trophic levels). The molar ratio Se:Hg and Se HBVs were higher in iliophagous and herbivorous fishes, which is noteworthy to reduce toxic effects of Hg contamination. For planktivores, the content of Se and Hg was almost equimolar. Carnivorous fishes - with the exception of Hemisorubim platyrhynchos and Pseudoplatystoma fasciatum -, showed Se:Hg ratios <1. Thus, they do not act as a favorable source of Se in the diet. Therefore, reduced intake of carnivorous fishes with preferential consumption of iliophages, herbivores and, to some extent, even planktivores should be promoted as part of a healthier diet. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier GmbH. All

  15. Known Predators of Crown-of-Thorns Starfish (Acanthaster spp. and Their Role in Mitigating, If Not Preventing, Population Outbreaks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zara-Louise Cowan

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Predatory release has long been considered a potential contributor to population outbreaks of crown-of-thorns starfish (CoTS; Acanthaster spp.. This has initiated extensive searches for potentially important predators that can consume large numbers of CoTS at high rates, which are also vulnerable to over-fishing or reef degradation. Herein, we review reported predators of CoTS and assess the potential for these organisms to exert significant mortality, and thereby prevent and/or moderate CoTS outbreaks. In all, 80 species of coral reef organisms (including fishes, and motile and sessile invertebrates are reported to predate on CoTS gametes (three species, larvae (17 species, juveniles (15 species, adults (18 species and/or opportunistically feed on injured (10 species or moribund (42 species individuals within reef habitats. It is clear however, that predation on early life-history stages has been understudied, and there are likely to be many more species of reef fishes and/or sessile invertebrates that readily consume CoTS gametes and/or larvae. Given the number and diversity of coral reef species that consume Acanthaster spp., most of which (e.g., Arothron pufferfishes are not explicitly targeted by reef-based fisheries, links between overfishing and CoTS outbreaks remain equivocal. There is also no single species that appears to have a disproportionate role in regulating CoTS populations. Rather, the collective consumption of CoTS by multiple different species and at different life-history stages is likely to suppress the local abundance of CoTS, and thereby mediate the severity of outbreaks. It is possible therefore, that general degradation of reef ecosystems and corresponding declines in biodiversity and productivity, may contribute to increasing incidence or severity of outbreaks of Acanthaster spp. However, it seems unlikely that predatory release in and of itself could account for initial onset of CoTS outbreaks. In conclusion, reducing

  16. Expansion of Dreissena into offshore waters of Lake Michigan and potential impacts on fish populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bunnell, D.B.; Madenjian, C.P.; Holuszko, J.D.; Adams, J.V.; French, J. R. P.

    2009-01-01

    Lake Michigan was invaded by zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) in the late 1980s and then followed by quagga mussels (D. bugensis) around 1997. Through 2000, both species (herein Dreissena) were largely restricted to depths less than 50??m. Herein, we provide results of an annual lake-wide bottom trawl survey in Lake Michigan that reveal the relative biomass and depth distribution of Dreissena between 1999 and 2007 (although biomass estimates from a bottom trawl are biased low). Lake-wide mean biomass density (g/m2) and mean depth of collection revealed no trend between 1999 and 2003 (mean = 0.7??g/m2 and 37??m, respectively). Between 2004 and 2007, however, mean lake-wide biomass density increased from 0.8??g/m2 to 7.0??g/m2, because of increased density at depths between 30 and 110??m, and mean depth of collection increased from 42 to 77??m. This pattern was confirmed by a generalized additive model. Coincident with the Dreissena expansion that occurred beginning in 2004, fish biomass density (generally planktivores) declined 71% between 2003 and 2007. Current understanding of fish population dynamics, however, indicates that Dreissena expansion is not the primary explanation for the decline of fish, and we provide a species-specific account for more likely underlying factors. Nonetheless, future sampling and research may reveal a better understanding of the potential negative interactions between Dreissena and fish in Lake Michigan and elsewhere.

  17. Prey aggregation is an effective olfactory predator avoidance strategy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Asa Johannesen

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Predator–prey interactions have a major effect on species abundance and diversity, and aggregation is a well-known anti-predator behaviour. For immobile prey, the effectiveness of aggregation depends on two conditions: (a the inability of the predator to consume all prey in a group and (b detection of a single large group not being proportionally easier than that of several small groups. How prey aggregation influences predation rates when visual cues are restricted, such as in turbid water, has not been thoroughly investigated. We carried out foraging (predation experiments using a fish predator and (dead chironomid larvae as prey in both laboratory and field settings. In the laboratory, a reduction in visual cue availability (in turbid water led to a delay in the location of aggregated prey compared to when visual cues were available. Aggregated prey suffered high mortality once discovered, leading to better survival of dispersed prey in the longer term. We attribute this to the inability of the dead prey to take evasive action. In the field (where prey were placed in feeding stations that allowed transmission of olfactory but not visual cues, aggregated (large groups and semi-dispersed prey survived for longer than dispersed prey—including long term survival. Together, our results indicate that similar to systems where predators hunt using vision, aggregation is an effective anti-predator behaviour for prey avoiding olfactory predators.

  18. Energy storage and fecundity explain deviations from ecological stoichiometry predictions under global warming and size-selective predation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Chao; Jansen, Mieke; De Meester, Luc; Stoks, Robby

    2016-11-01

    A key challenge for ecologists is to predict how single and joint effects of global warming and predation risk translate from the individual level up to ecosystem functions. Recently, stoichiometric theory linked these levels through changes in body stoichiometry, predicting that both higher temperatures and predation risk induce shifts in energy storage (increases in C-rich carbohydrates and reductions in N-rich proteins) and body stoichiometry (increases in C : N and C : P). This promising theory, however, is rarely tested and assumes that prey will divert energy away from reproduction under predation risk, while under size-selective predation, prey instead increase fecundity. We exposed the water flea Daphnia magna to 4 °C warming and fish predation risk to test whether C-rich carbohydrates increase and N-rich proteins decrease, and as a result, C : N and C : P increase under warming and predation risk. Unexpectedly, warming decreased body C : N, which was driven by reductions in C-rich fat and sugar contents while the protein content did not change. This reflected a trade-off where the accelerated intrinsic growth rate under warming occurred at the cost of a reduced energy storage. Warming reduced C : N less and only increased C : P and N : P in the fish-period Daphnia. These evolved stoichiometric responses to warming were largely driven by stronger warming-induced reductions in P than in C and N and could be explained by the better ability to deal with warming in the fish-period Daphnia. In contrast to theory predictions, body C : N decreased under predation risk due to a strong increase in the N-rich protein content that offsets the increase in C-rich fat content. The higher investment in fecundity (more N-rich eggs) under predation risk contributed to this stronger increase in protein content. Similarly, the lower body C : N of pre-fish Daphnia also matched their higher fecundity. Warming and predation risk independently shaped body

  19. Anadromous fish behaviour important for fish passage

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kynard, B.E.

    1993-01-01

    An understanding of the behavior of target fish species is necessary for proper design, location, and operation of a successful upstream or downstream fishway for anadromous migrants. Important fish behaviors are seasonal and daily timing of migration; rheotaxis and near field behavior; stimulus-response behavior; swimming capability; shoaling behavior; response to physical environmental factors such as illumination, sound, water depth, current velocity, and structure; response to chemicals; and response to biological factors such as competition for space and response to predators. The information on migrant fish behavior is reviewed, using examples from the literature on the behavior of eastern anadromous species, particularly Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) and American shad (Alosa sapidissima). 87 refs

  20. Earning their stripes: The potential of tiger trout and other salmonids as biological controls of forage fishes in a western reservoir

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winters, Lisa K.; Budy, Phaedra; Thiede, Gary P.

    2017-01-01

    Maintaining a balance between predator and prey populations can be an ongoing challenge for fisheries managers, especially in managing artificial ecosystems such as reservoirs. In a high-elevation Utah reservoir, the unintentional introduction of the Utah Chub Gila atraria and its subsequent population expansion prompted managers to experimentally shift from exclusively stocking Rainbow Trout Oncorhynchus mykiss to also stocking tiger trout (female Brown Trout Salmo trutta × male Brook Trout Salvelinus fontinalis) and Bonneville Cutthroat Trout O. clarkii utah (hereafter, Cutthroat Trout) as potential biological control agents. We measured a combination of diet, growth, temperature, and abundance and used bioenergetic simulations to quantify predator demand versus prey supply. Utah Chub were the predominant prey type for tiger trout, contributing up to 80% of the diet depending on the season. Utah Chub represented up to 70% of the total diet consumed by Cutthroat Trout. Although Utah Chub dominated the fish biomass in the reservoir, we still estimated abundances of 238,000 tiger trout, 214,000 Cutthroat Trout, and 55,000 Rainbow Trout. Consequently, when expanded to the population level of each predator, tiger trout and Cutthroat Trout consumed large quantities of Utah Chub on an annual basis: tiger trout consumed 508,000 kg (2,660 g/predator) of the standing prey population, and Cutthroat Trout consumed an estimated 322,000 kg (1,820 g/predator). The estimated combined consumption by Cutthroat Trout and tiger trout exceeded the estimate of Utah Chub annual production. As such, our results suggest that the high rates of piscivory exhibited by Cutthroat Trout and tiger trout in artificial lentic ecosystems are likely sufficient to effectively reduce the overall abundance of forage fishes and to prevent forage fishes from dominating fish assemblages. Collectively, this research provides the first documented findings on tiger trout ecology and performance

  1. Compensatory Feeding Following a Predator Removal Program : Detection and Mechanisms, 1982-1996 Progress Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Petersen, James H.

    2002-02-28

    Predator removal is one of the oldest management tools in existence, with evidence that ancient Greeks used a bounty reward for wolves over 3,000 years ago (Anonymous 1964). Efforts to control predators on fish have been documented in scientific journals for at least 60 years (Eschmeyer 1937; Lagler 1939; Foerster and Ricker 1941; Smith and Swingle 1941; Jeppson and Platts 1959), and has likely been attempted for much longer. Complete eradication of a target species from a body of water has rarely been the objective of predator removal programs, which instead have attempted to eliminate predators from specific areas, to reduce the density or standing stock of predators, or to kill the largest individuals in the population (Meronek et al. 1996). In evaluating management programs that remove only part of a predator population, the compensatory response(s) of the remaining predators must be considered. Some potential compensatory responses by remaining individuals include increased reproductive output, increased growth rate, or increased consumption of certain prey species (Jude et al. 1987). If compensation by predators that remain in the system following a removal effort occurs, it may reduce the effectiveness of the predator control program. Northern pike-minnow Ptychocheilus oregonensis (formerly called northern squawfish) consume juvenile salmon in rivers, lakes, and reservoirs in British Columbia, Washington, Idaho, Oregon, and California. Northern pikeminnow have been estimated to consume about 11% of all juvenile salmon that migrate through John Day Reservoir on the Columbia River (Rieman et al. 1991). Modeling studies suggested that removal of 20% of the northern pikeminnow population in John Day Reservoir would result in a 50% decrease in predation-related mortality of juvenile salmon migrating through this reach (Beamesderfer et al. 1991). Since the early 1940's, other programs have been implemented to remove northern pikeminnow, with hopes of

  2. Parasitology: Parasite survives predation on its host

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ponton, Fleur; Lebarbenchon, Camille; Lefèvre, Thierry

    2006-01-01

    As prisoners in their living habitat, parasites should be vulnerable to destruction by the predators of their hosts. But we show here that the parasitic gordian worm Paragordius tricuspidatus is able to escape not only from its insect host after ingestion by a fish or frog but also from...

  3. Influence of prey body characteristics and performance on predator selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holmes, Thomas H; McCormick, Mark I

    2009-03-01

    At the time of settlement to the reef environment, coral reef fishes differ in a number of characteristics that may influence their survival during a predatory encounter. This study investigated the selective nature of predation by both a multi-species predator pool, and a single common predator (Pseudochromis fuscus), on the reef fish, Pomacentrus amboinensis. The study focused on the early post-settlement period of P. amboinensis, when mortality, and hence selection, is known to be highest. Correlations between nine different measures of body condition/performance were examined at the time of settlement, in order to elucidate the relationships between different traits. Single-predator (P. fuscus) choice trials were conducted in 57.4-l aquaria with respect to three different prey characteristics [standard length (SL), body weight and burst swimming speed], whilst multi-species trials were conducted on open patch reefs, manipulating prey body weight only. Relationships between the nine measures of condition/performance were generally poor, with the strongest correlations occurring between the morphological measures and within the performance measures. During aquaria trials, P. fuscus was found to be selective with respect to prey SL only, with larger individuals being selected significantly more often. Multi-species predator communities, however, were selective with respect to prey body weight, with heavier individuals being selected significantly more often than their lighter counterparts. Our results suggest that under controlled conditions, body length may be the most important prey characteristic influencing prey survival during predatory encounters with P. fuscus. In such cases, larger prey size may actually be a distinct disadvantage to survival. However, these relationships appear to be more complex under natural conditions, where the expression of prey characteristics, the selectivity fields of a number of different predators, their relative abundance, and

  4. Loss of live coral compromises predator-avoidance behaviour in coral reef damselfish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boström-Einarsson, Lisa; Bonin, Mary C; Munday, Philip L; Jones, Geoffrey P

    2018-05-17

    Tropical reefs have experienced an unprecedented loss of live coral in the past few decades and the biodiversity of coral-dependent species is under threat. Many reef fish species decline in abundance as coral cover is lost, yet the mechanisms responsible for these losses are largely unknown. A commonly hypothesised cause of fish decline is the loss of shelter space between branches as dead corals become overgrown by algae. Here we tested this hypothesis by quantifying changes in predator-avoidance behaviour of a common damselfish, Pomacentrus moluccensis, before and after the death of their coral colony. Groups of P. moluccensis were placed on either healthy or degraded coral colonies, startled using a visual stimulus and their sheltering responses compared over a 7-week period. P. moluccensis stopped sheltering amongst the coral branches immediately following the death of the coral, despite the presence of ample shelter space. Instead, most individuals swam away from the dead coral, potentially increasing their exposure to predators. It appears that the presence of live coral rather than shelter per se is the necessary cue that elicits the appropriate behavioural response to potential predators. The disruption of this link poses an immediate threat to coral-associated fishes on degrading reefs.

  5. Invasive lionfish drive Atlantic coral reef fish declines.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephanie J Green

    Full Text Available Indo-Pacific lionfish (Pterois volitans and P. miles have spread swiftly across the Western Atlantic, producing a marine predator invasion of unparalleled speed and magnitude. There is growing concern that lionfish will affect the structure and function of invaded marine ecosystems, however detrimental impacts on natural communities have yet to be measured. Here we document the response of native fish communities to predation by lionfish populations on nine coral reefs off New Providence Island, Bahamas. We assessed lionfish diet through stomach contents analysis, and quantified changes in fish biomass through visual surveys of lionfish and native fishes at the sites over time. Lionfish abundance increased rapidly between 2004 and 2010, by which time lionfish comprised nearly 40% of the total predator biomass in the system. The increase in lionfish abundance coincided with a 65% decline in the biomass of the lionfish's 42 Atlantic prey fishes in just two years. Without prompt action to control increasing lionfish populations, similar effects across the region may have long-term negative implications for the structure of Atlantic marine communities, as well as the societies and economies that depend on them.

  6. Invasive lionfish drive Atlantic coral reef fish declines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green, Stephanie J; Akins, John L; Maljković, Aleksandra; Côté, Isabelle M

    2012-01-01

    Indo-Pacific lionfish (Pterois volitans and P. miles) have spread swiftly across the Western Atlantic, producing a marine predator invasion of unparalleled speed and magnitude. There is growing concern that lionfish will affect the structure and function of invaded marine ecosystems, however detrimental impacts on natural communities have yet to be measured. Here we document the response of native fish communities to predation by lionfish populations on nine coral reefs off New Providence Island, Bahamas. We assessed lionfish diet through stomach contents analysis, and quantified changes in fish biomass through visual surveys of lionfish and native fishes at the sites over time. Lionfish abundance increased rapidly between 2004 and 2010, by which time lionfish comprised nearly 40% of the total predator biomass in the system. The increase in lionfish abundance coincided with a 65% decline in the biomass of the lionfish's 42 Atlantic prey fishes in just two years. Without prompt action to control increasing lionfish populations, similar effects across the region may have long-term negative implications for the structure of Atlantic marine communities, as well as the societies and economies that depend on them.

  7. Microplastic fragments and microbeads in digestive tracts of planktivorous fish from urban coastal waters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanaka, Kosuke; Takada, Hideshige

    2016-01-01

    We investigated microplastics in the digestive tracts of 64 Japanese anchovy (Engraulis japonicus) sampled in Tokyo Bay. Plastic was detected in 49 out of 64 fish (77%), with 2.3 pieces on average and up to 15 pieces per individual. All of the plastics were identified by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. Most were polyethylene (52.0%) or polypropylene (43.3%). Most of the plastics were fragments (86.0%), but 7.3% were beads, some of which were microbeads, similar to those found in facial cleansers. Eighty percent of the plastics ranged in size from 150 μm to 1000 μm, smaller than the reported size range of floating microplastics on the sea surface, possibly because the subsurface foraging behavior of the anchovy reflected the different size distribution of plastics between surface waters and subsurface waters. Engraulis spp. are important food for many humans and other organisms around the world. Our observations further confirm that microplastics have infiltrated the marine ecosystem, and that humans may be exposed to them. Because microplastics retain hazardous chemicals, increase in fish chemical exposure by the ingested plastics is of concern. Such exposure should be studied and compared with that in the natural diet. PMID:27686984

  8. Invasive predators and global biodiversity loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doherty, Tim S; Glen, Alistair S; Nimmo, Dale G; Ritchie, Euan G; Dickman, Chris R

    2016-10-04

    Invasive species threaten biodiversity globally, and invasive mammalian predators are particularly damaging, having contributed to considerable species decline and extinction. We provide a global metaanalysis of these impacts and reveal their full extent. Invasive predators are implicated in 87 bird, 45 mammal, and 10 reptile species extinctions-58% of these groups' contemporary extinctions worldwide. These figures are likely underestimated because 23 critically endangered species that we assessed are classed as "possibly extinct." Invasive mammalian predators endanger a further 596 species at risk of extinction, with cats, rodents, dogs, and pigs threatening the most species overall. Species most at risk from predators have high evolutionary distinctiveness and inhabit insular environments. Invasive mammalian predators are therefore important drivers of irreversible loss of phylogenetic diversity worldwide. That most impacted species are insular indicates that management of invasive predators on islands should be a global conservation priority. Understanding and mitigating the impact of invasive mammalian predators is essential for reducing the rate of global biodiversity loss.

  9. Metabolic engineering Camelina sativa with fish oil-like levels of DHA.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James R Petrie

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Omega-3 long-chain (≥C20 polyunsaturated fatty acids (ω3 LC-PUFA such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA are critical for human health and development [corrected].. Numerous studies have indicated that deficiencies in these fatty acids can increase the risk or severity of cardiovascular, inflammatory and other diseases or disorders. EPA and DHA are predominantly sourced from marine fish although the primary producers are microalgae. Much work has been done to engineer a sustainable land-based source of EPA and DHA to reduce pressure on fish stocks in meeting future demand, with previous studies describing the production of fish oil-like levels of DHA in the model plant species, Arabidopsis thaliana. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In this study we describe the production of fish oil-like levels (>12% of DHA in the oilseed crop species Camelina sativa achieving a high ω3/ω6 ratio. The construct previously transformed in Arabidopsis as well as two modified construct versions designed to increase DHA production were used. DHA was found to be stable to at least the T5 generation and the EPA and DHA were found to be predominantly at the sn-1,3 positions of triacylglycerols. Transgenic and parental lines did not have different germination or seedling establishment rates. CONCLUSIONS: DHA can be produced at fish oil-like levels in industrially-relevant oilseed crop species using multi-gene construct designs which are stable over multiple generations. This study has implications for the future of sustainable EPA and DHA production from land-based sources.

  10. 62 years of population dynamics of European perch (Perca fluviatilis) in a mesotrophic lake tracked using angler diaries: The role of commercial fishing, predation and temperature

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skov, Christian; Jansen, Teunis; Arlinghaus, Robert

    2017-01-01

    (abundance, mean size and record size) of European perch (Perca fluviatilis L.) in relation to the impact of three commercial fishers with different fishing strategies, pike (Esox lucius L.) predation and temperature. We found that anglers’ harvest rates of perch varied by a factor of 10 over time......, but it also underlines the need for supplementary data on biotic and abiotic factors to reach the full potential of angler diary data...

  11. Passive appendages improve the maneuverability of fish-like robots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pollard, Beau; Tallapragada, Phanindra

    2017-11-01

    It is known that the passive mechanics of fish appendages play a role in the high efficiency of their swimming. A well known example of this is the experimental demonstration that a dead fish could swim upstream. However little is known about the role if any of passive deformations of a fish-like body that could aid in its maneuverability. Part of the difficulty investigating this lies in clearly separating the role of actuated body deformations and passive deformations in response to the fluid structure interaction. In this paper we compare the maneuverability of several fish shaped robotic models that possess varying numbers of passive appendages with a fish shaped robot that has no appendages. All the robots are propelled by the oscillations of an internal momentum wheel thereby eliminating any active deformations of the body. Our experiments clearly reveal the significant improvement in maneuverability of robots with passive appendages. In the broader context of swimming robots our experiments show that passive mechanisms could be useful to provide mechanical feedback that can help maneuverability and obstacle avoidance along with propulsive efficiency. This work was partly supported by a Grant from the NSF CMMI 1563315.

  12. Allometric relations and consequences for feeding in small pelagic fish in the Bay of Biscay

    KAUST Repository

    Bachiller, Eneko

    2012-11-21

    The body size of fish is an important factor in determining their biology and ecology, as predators eat prey smaller than themselves. Predator mouth size restricts the availability of possible prey. In this paper we provide the allometric relationships of eight common, small pelagic fish species in the Bay of Biscay. In addition, we describe the predator-prey size ratios for different species, and we determine changes in their ratio-based trophic-niche breadth with increasing body size. Results suggest that gape size does not totally determine the predator-prey size ratio distribution, but predators use the entire available prey size range, including the smallest. As they grow they simply incorporate larger prey as their increased gape size permits. Accordingly, a large degree of overlap was found in the diet composition in terms of size and predator-prey ratios, even between fish of different sizes. Of the species studied, only horse mackerels seem to be clearly specialized in relatively large prey. © 2012 International Council for the Exploration of the Sea.

  13. Effect of wavelength of fish-like undulation of a hydrofoil in a free ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Thekkethil Namshad

    Abstract. Fish-like undulating body was proposed as an efficient propulsion system, and various mechanisms ... fishes/foil. The present work proposes a unified study for undulating and pitching foil, by varying wavelength k. (from 0.8 to 8.0) of a wave travelling backwards over the ...... and Randall D J (Eds.) Fish physiology.

  14. Predator-driven brain size evolution in natural populations of Trinidadian killifish (Rivulus hartii)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walsh, Matthew R.; Broyles, Whitnee; Beston, Shannon M.; Munch, Stephan B.

    2016-01-01

    Vertebrates exhibit extensive variation in relative brain size. It has long been assumed that this variation is the product of ecologically driven natural selection. Yet, despite more than 100 years of research, the ecological conditions that select for changes in brain size are unclear. Recent laboratory selection experiments showed that selection for larger brains is associated with increased survival in risky environments. Such results lead to the prediction that increased predation should favour increased brain size. Work on natural populations, however, foreshadows the opposite trajectory of evolution; increased predation favours increased boldness, slower learning, and may thereby select for a smaller brain. We tested the influence of predator-induced mortality on brain size evolution by quantifying brain size variation in a Trinidadian killifish, Rivulus hartii, from communities that differ in predation intensity. We observed strong genetic differences in male (but not female) brain size between fish communities; second generation laboratory-reared males from sites with predators exhibited smaller brains than Rivulus from sites in which they are the only fish present. Such trends oppose the results of recent laboratory selection experiments and are not explained by trade-offs with other components of fitness. Our results suggest that increased male brain size is favoured in less risky environments because of the fitness benefits associated with faster rates of learning and problem-solving behaviour. PMID:27412278

  15. Biomechanics of swimming in developing larval fish

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Voesenek, Cees J.; Muijres, Florian T.; Leeuwen, Van Johan L.

    2018-01-01

    Most larvae of bony fish are able to swim almost immediately after hatching. Their locomotory system supports several vital functions: fish larvae make fast manoeuvres to escape from predators, aim accurately during suction feeding and maymigrate towards suitable future habitats. Owing to their

  16. Predator response to releases of American shad larvae in the Susquehanna River basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, James H.; Ringler, N.H.

    1998-01-01

    Predation on American shad (Alosa sapidissima) larvae within the first two hours of release was examined from 1989 to 1992 on 31 occasions at stocking sites in the Susquehanna River basin. Twenty-two fish species consumed shad larvae; the dominant predators were spotfin shiner (Cyprinella spiloptera), mimic shiner (Notropis volucellus) and juvenile smallmouth bass (Micropterus dolomieu). The number of shad larvae found in predator stomachs ranged from 0 to 900. Mortality of shad larvae at the stocking site was usually less than 2%. The greatest mortality (9.6%) occurred at the highest stocking level (1.5 million larvae). Highly variable predation rates and release levels of shad insufficient to achieve predator satiation hindered the ability to determine a specific type of functional response of predators. Predator numbers increased with stocking density, indicating short-term aggregation at the release site. Because of practical problems associated with releasing the large numbers of larvae that would be required to satiate predators, routine stocking at these levels is probably unreasonable. Releases of 400,000 to 700,000 larvae may reduce predation by offsetting depensatory mechanisms that operate on small releases and the effects of increased predation due to predator aggregation on large releases. Night stocking may reduce predation on larval shad at the release site.

  17. Trophodynamics and diet overlap of small pelagic fish species in the Bay of Biscay

    KAUST Repository

    Bachiller, E

    2015-08-27

    Small pelagic fish are the link between planktonic production and higher trophic levels. Competition for resources may play a role in the population dynamics of species, some of them probably standing out from the others due to greater feeding success. It is therefore important to understand the trophic niche of species overlapping both spatially and temporally. In this study, we have investigated the diet, prey preference, trophic niche breadth and diet overlap of the 8 major small pelagic species (anchovy, sardine, sprat, Atlantic and Mediterranean horse mackerel, bogue, Atlantic mackerel and Atlantic chub mackerel) inhabiting the Bay of Biscay. Results indicate that all fish feed mainly on calanoid copepods, incorporating larger prey like euphausiids and decapods to complete their diet. Differences in ingested prey diversity seem to be more limited by the available zooplankton at sea than by a specific diet preference by fish species, resulting in an overall high diet overlap, especially within clupeids but also between clupeids and other (larger) predator species. Consumption estimations for different prey groups could therefore determine whether such a large diet overlap between small pelagic fish, together with spatial co-occurrence, results in competition or enhances the effects of intraguild predation, which is important in terms of an ecosystem approach to fisheries management.

  18. Trophodynamics and diet overlap of small pelagic fish species in the Bay of Biscay

    KAUST Repository

    Bachiller, E; Irigoien, Xabier

    2015-01-01

    Small pelagic fish are the link between planktonic production and higher trophic levels. Competition for resources may play a role in the population dynamics of species, some of them probably standing out from the others due to greater feeding success. It is therefore important to understand the trophic niche of species overlapping both spatially and temporally. In this study, we have investigated the diet, prey preference, trophic niche breadth and diet overlap of the 8 major small pelagic species (anchovy, sardine, sprat, Atlantic and Mediterranean horse mackerel, bogue, Atlantic mackerel and Atlantic chub mackerel) inhabiting the Bay of Biscay. Results indicate that all fish feed mainly on calanoid copepods, incorporating larger prey like euphausiids and decapods to complete their diet. Differences in ingested prey diversity seem to be more limited by the available zooplankton at sea than by a specific diet preference by fish species, resulting in an overall high diet overlap, especially within clupeids but also between clupeids and other (larger) predator species. Consumption estimations for different prey groups could therefore determine whether such a large diet overlap between small pelagic fish, together with spatial co-occurrence, results in competition or enhances the effects of intraguild predation, which is important in terms of an ecosystem approach to fisheries management.

  19. Functional responses and scaling in predator-prey interactions of marine fishes: contemporary issues and emerging concepts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunsicker, Mary E; Ciannelli, Lorenzo; Bailey, Kevin M; Buckel, Jeffrey A; Wilson White, J; Link, Jason S; Essington, Timothy E; Gaichas, Sarah; Anderson, Todd W; Brodeur, Richard D; Chan, Kung-Sik; Chen, Kun; Englund, Göran; Frank, Kenneth T; Freitas, Vânia; Hixon, Mark A; Hurst, Thomas; Johnson, Darren W; Kitchell, James F; Reese, Doug; Rose, George A; Sjodin, Henrik; Sydeman, William J; van der Veer, Henk W; Vollset, Knut; Zador, Stephani

    2011-12-01

    Predator-prey interactions are a primary structuring force vital to the resilience of marine communities and sustainability of the world's oceans. Human influences on marine ecosystems mediate changes in species interactions. This generality is evinced by the cascading effects of overharvesting top predators on the structure and function of marine ecosystems. It follows that ecological forecasting, ecosystem management, and marine spatial planning require a better understanding of food web relationships. Characterising and scaling predator-prey interactions for use in tactical and strategic tools (i.e. multi-species management and ecosystem models) are paramount in this effort. Here, we explore what issues are involved and must be considered to advance the use of predator-prey theory in the context of marine fisheries science. We address pertinent contemporary ecological issues including (1) the approaches and complexities of evaluating predator responses in marine systems; (2) the 'scaling up' of predator-prey interactions to the population, community, and ecosystem level; (3) the role of predator-prey theory in contemporary fisheries and ecosystem modelling approaches; and (4) directions for the future. Our intent is to point out needed research directions that will improve our understanding of predator-prey interactions in the context of the sustainable marine fisheries and ecosystem management. 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/CNRS.

  20. Angler-caught piscivore diets reflect fish community changes in Lake Huron

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roseman, Edward F.; Schaeffer, Jeff; Bright, Ethan; Fielder, David G.

    2014-01-01

    Examination of angler-caught piscivore stomachs revealed that Lake Trout Salvelinus namaycush, Chinook Salmon Oncorhynchus tshawytscha, and Walleyes Sander vitreus altered theirdiets in response to unprecedented declines in Lake Huron's main-basin prey fish community.Diets varied by predator species, season, and location but were nearly always dominated numerically by some combination of Alewife Alosa pseudoharengus, Rainbow Smelt Osmerus mordax, Emerald Shiner Notropis atherinoides, Round Goby Neogobius melanostomus, or terrestrial insects. Rainbow Trout Oncorhynchus mykiss (steelhead), Coho Salmon Oncorhynchus kisutch, and Atlantic Salmon Salmo salar had varied diets that reflected higher contributions of insects. Compared with an earlier (1983–1986) examination of angler-caught predator fishes from Lake Huron, the contemporary results showed an increase in consumption of nontraditional prey (including conspecifics), use of smaller prey, and an increase in insects in the diet, suggesting that piscivores were faced with chronic prey limitation during this study. The management of all piscivores in Lake Huron will likely require consideration of the pervasive effects of changes in food webs, especially if prey fish remain at low levels.

  1. The modeling of predator-prey interactions

    OpenAIRE

    Muhammad Shakil; H. A. Wahab; Muhammad Naeem, et al.

    2015-01-01

    In this paper, we aim to study the interactions between the territorial animals like foxes and the rabbits. The territories for the foxes are considered to be the simple cells. The interactions between predator and its prey are represented by the chemical reactions which obey the mass action law. In this sense, we apply the mass action law for predator prey models and the quasi chemical approach is applied for the interactions between the predator and its prey to develop the modeled equations...

  2. Effects of predation on diel activity and habitat use of the coral-reef shrimp Cinetorhynchus hendersoni (Rhynchocinetidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ory, Nicolas C.; Dudgeon, David; Duprey, Nicolas; Thiel, Martin

    2014-09-01

    Nonlethal effects of predators on prey behaviour are still poorly understood, although they may have cascading effects through food webs. Underwater observations and experiments were conducted on a shallow fringing coral reef in Malaysia to examine whether predation risks affect diel activity, habitat use, and survival of the rhynchocinetid shrimp Cinetorhynchus hendersoni. The study site was within a protected area where predatory fish were abundant. Visual surveys and tethering experiments were conducted in April-May 2010 to compare the abundance of shrimps and predatory fishes and the relative predation intensity on shrimps during day and night. Shrimps were not seen during the day but came out of refuges at night, when the risk of being eaten was reduced. Shrimp preferences for substrata of different complexities and types were examined at night when they could be seen on the reef; complex substrata were preferred, while simple substrata were avoided. Shrimps were abundant on high-complexity columnar-foliate Porites rus, but tended to make little use of branching Acropora spp. Subsequent tethering experiments, conducted during daytime in June 2013, compared the relative mortality of shrimps on simple (sand-rubble, massive Porites spp.) and complex ( P. rus, branching Acropora spp.) substrata under different predation risk scenarios (i.e., different tether lengths and exposure durations). The mortality of shrimps with short tethers (high risk) was high on all substrata while, under low and intermediate predation risks (long tethers), shrimp mortality was reduced on complex corals relative to that on sand-rubble or massive Porites spp. Overall, mortality was lowest on P. rus. Our study indicates that predation risks constrain shrimp activity and habitat choice, forcing them to hide deep inside complex substrata during the day. Such behavioural responses to predation risks and their consequences for the trophic role of invertebrate mesoconsumers warrant further

  3. Assessment on dioxin-like compounds intake from various marine fish from Zhoushan Fishery, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xiangyong; Zhang, Hongxia; Zhang, Lei; Zhong, Kai; Shang, Xiaohong; Zhao, Yunfeng; Tong, Zhendong; Yu, Xinwei; Li, Jingguang; Wu, Yongning

    2015-01-01

    Sea fish consuming is an important intake source of dioxin-like compounds, especially for the coastal residents. To assess the intake levels of these contaminants from sea fish and to provide risk-based consumption advice, concentrations of 17 polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs) and 12 dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyls (dl-PCBs) were measured in 32 commonly consumed fish species from Zhoushan Fishery, China. Due to the different accumulation influenced by fat content, feed habits and living zone in the sea area, the levels of PCDDs, PCDFs and dl-PCBs in different fish species varied significantly ranging from 0.002 to 0.078pg WHO-TEQ/g fresh weight, from 0.002 to 0.553pg WHO-TEQ/g fresh weight and from 0.003 to 2.059pg WHO-TEQ/g fresh weight, respectively. Based on mean fish consuming rate in China, the estimated maximum possible dioxin-like compounds intake through different fish species ranged from 0.26 to 65.61pgTEQkg(-1)bwmonth(-1). Bullet mackerel has the highest monthly intake level which was much higher than other fish species and very close to the provisional tolerable monthly intake (70pgTEQkg(-)(1)bwmonth(-)(1)) proposed by the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives. Hence, comparing to other fish species, the consumption of Bullet mackerel from Zhoushan Fishery should be cautious to reduce the potential health risk. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Reef fish communities in the central Red Sea show evidence of asymmetrical fishing pressure

    KAUST Repository

    Kattan, Alexander; Coker, Darren James; Berumen, Michael L.

    2017-01-01

    In order to assess human impacts and develop rational restoration goals for corals reefs, baseline estimates of fish communities are required. In Saudi Arabian waters of the Red Sea, widespread unregulated fishing is thought to have been ongoing for decades, but there is little direct evidence of the impact on reef communities. To contextualize this human influence, reef-associated fish assemblages on offshore reefs in Saudi Arabia and Sudan in the central Red Sea were investigated. These reefs have comparable benthic environments, experience similar oceanographic influences, and are separated by less than 300 km, offering an ideal comparison for identifying potential anthropogenic impacts such as fishing pressure. This is the first study to assess reef fish biomass in both these regions, providing important baselines estimates. We found that biomass of top predators on offshore Sudanese reefs was on average almost three times that measured on comparable reefs in Saudi Arabia. Biomass values from some of the most remote reefs surveyed in Sudan’s far southern region even approach those previously reported in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, northern Line Islands, Pitcairn Islands, and other isolated Pacific islands and atolls. The findings suggest that fishing pressure has significantly altered the fish community structure of Saudi Arabian Red Sea reefs, most conspicuously in the form of top predator removal. The results point towards the urgent need for enhanced regulation and enforcement of fishing practices in Saudi Arabia, while making a strong case for protection in the form of no-take marine protected areas to maintain preservation of the relatively intact southern Sudanese Red Sea.

  5. Reef fish communities in the central Red Sea show evidence of asymmetrical fishing pressure

    KAUST Repository

    Kattan, Alexander

    2017-03-09

    In order to assess human impacts and develop rational restoration goals for corals reefs, baseline estimates of fish communities are required. In Saudi Arabian waters of the Red Sea, widespread unregulated fishing is thought to have been ongoing for decades, but there is little direct evidence of the impact on reef communities. To contextualize this human influence, reef-associated fish assemblages on offshore reefs in Saudi Arabia and Sudan in the central Red Sea were investigated. These reefs have comparable benthic environments, experience similar oceanographic influences, and are separated by less than 300 km, offering an ideal comparison for identifying potential anthropogenic impacts such as fishing pressure. This is the first study to assess reef fish biomass in both these regions, providing important baselines estimates. We found that biomass of top predators on offshore Sudanese reefs was on average almost three times that measured on comparable reefs in Saudi Arabia. Biomass values from some of the most remote reefs surveyed in Sudan’s far southern region even approach those previously reported in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, northern Line Islands, Pitcairn Islands, and other isolated Pacific islands and atolls. The findings suggest that fishing pressure has significantly altered the fish community structure of Saudi Arabian Red Sea reefs, most conspicuously in the form of top predator removal. The results point towards the urgent need for enhanced regulation and enforcement of fishing practices in Saudi Arabia, while making a strong case for protection in the form of no-take marine protected areas to maintain preservation of the relatively intact southern Sudanese Red Sea.

  6. Bioaccumulation of radiocesium by fish: the influence of physicochemical factors and trophic structure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rowan, D.J.; Rasmussen, J.B.

    1994-01-01

    Although many measurements have been made on radiocesium levels in water and aquatic biota, no agreement has been reached regarding the factors affecting bioaccumulation of these radionuclides. With monitoring data from countries that operate nuclear facilities and data from the primary literature, we explored the chemical and ecological factors that determine the bioaccumulation of radiocesium. Using log-linear regression we found that the bioaccumulation of 137 CS by fish was a negative function of both dissolved potassium and suspended sediment concentration, and a positive function of temperature. Important ecological factors were the trophic level of the fish (piscivores bioaccumulate more than planktivores and benthivores), and the length of the food chain as reflected by the ratio of piscivore yield relative to net primary production. Fish from softwater drainages, which make up a large portion of northern Europe and Canada, are more vulnerable to radiocesium contamination than fish from hardwater sedimentary drainages, because these waters are extremely low in potassium and suspended sediment, and their watersheds are less efficient in retaining radiocesium. High dissolved potassium, short food chains, and the much greater volume and mixing potential of the ocean make marine fish less vulnerable to releases of radiocesium. (author)

  7. Variation in wind and piscivorous predator fields affecting the survival of Atlantic salmon, Salmo salar, in the Gulf of Maine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedland, K.D.; Manning, J.P.; Link, Jason S.; Gilbert, J.R.; Gilbert, A.T.; O'Connell, A.F.

    2012-01-01

    Observations relevant to the North American stock complex of Atlantic salmon, Salmo salar L., suggest that marine mortality is influenced by variation in predation pressure affecting post-smolts during the first months at sea. This hypothesis was tested for Gulf of Maine (GOM) stocks by examining wind pseudostress and the distribution of piscivorous predator fields potentially affecting post-smolts. Marine survival has declined over recent decades with a change in the direction of spring winds, which is likely extending the migration of post-smolts by favouring routes using the western GOM. In addition to changes in spring wind patterns, higher spring sea surface temperatures have been associated with shifting distributions of a range of fish species. The abundance of several pelagic piscivores, which based on their feeding habits may predate on salmon post-smolts, has increased in the areas that serve as migration corridors for post-smolts. In particular, populations of silver hake, Merluccius bilinearis (Mitchell), red hake, Urophycis chuss (Walbaum), and spiny dogfish, Squalus acanthias L., increased in size in the portion of the GOM used by post-smolts. Climate variation and shifting predator distributions in the GOM are consistent with the predator hypothesis of recruitment control suggested for the stock complex.

  8. Development of a systemwide predator control program: Stepwise implementation of a predation index, predator control fisheries, and evaluation plan in the Columbia River Basin. Volume 2 -- Evaluation: 1993 Annual report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Willis, C.F.; Ward, D.L.

    1995-06-01

    An attempt was made to determine the extent to which northern squawfish predation on juvenile salmonids is a problem in the Columbia River Basin, and to evaluate how effectively fisheries can be used to control northern squawfish populations and reduce juvenile salmonid losses to predation. These studies were initiated as part of a basinwide program to control northern squawfish predation and reduce mortality of juvenile salmonids on their migration to the ocean. Modeling simulations based on work in the John Day Reservoir from 1982 through 1988 indicated that if northern squawfish larger than 250 mm fork length were exploited, at a rate of 10--20%, reductions in their numbers and restructuring of their populations could reduce their predation on juvenile salmonids by 50% or more. The authors evaluated the success of three test fisheries conducted in 1993--a sport-reward fishery, a dam-angling fishery, and a trap-net fishery, to achieve a 10--20% exploitation rate on northern squawfish. The authors also began evaluating the response of northern squawfish populations to sustained fisheries. In addition, the authors gathered information regarding the economic, social, and legal feasibility of sustaining each fishery, and report on the structure and function of the fish collection and distribution system

  9. Species integrity enhanced by a predation cost to hybrids in the wild

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nilsson, P. A.; Hulthén, Kaj; Chapman, Ben B.

    2017-01-01

    Species integrity can be challenged, and even eroded, if closely related species can hybridize and produce fertile offspring of comparable fitness to that of parental species. The maintenance of newly diverged or closely related species therefore hinges on the establishment and effectiveness of pre...... barrier to gene flow in the wild. Cyprinid fishes commonly produce fertile, viable hybrid offspring and therefore make excellent study organisms to investigate ecological costs to hybrids. We electronically tagged two freshwater cyprinid fish species (roach Rutilus rutilus and bream Abramis brama...... to directly test for a predation cost to hybrids in the wild. Hybrid individuals were found significantly more susceptible to cormorant predation than individuals from either parental species. Such ecological selection against hybrids contributes to species integrity, and can enhance species diversification....

  10. Impact of cooling systems on Lake Michigan fishes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Spigarelli, S.A.; Romberg, G.P.

    1976-01-01

    A comparison of data on fish mortalities due to impingement at thermal power plant water intakes on Lake Michigan with available estimates of standing crop biomass, commercial and sport fishery catches, and estimated predation mortality is presented. The striking features of these data are the proportions of total mortality due to predation and the lack of accurate basic population statistics such as standing crop biomass and natural mortality for important forage and human food fishes in Lake Michigan. Although this preliminary assessment would indicate that power plant and total impingement losses constitute an insignificant fraction of total forage biomass, the potentially unstable forage-predator ratios and the apparent high degree of annual fluctuations (year-classes) in alewife, smelt, and perch indicate the need for a more detailed assessment of cooling-system related impact on selected populations

  11. 77 FR 42278 - Endangered and Threatened Species; Take of Anadromous Fish

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-07-18

    ... and Threatened Species; Take of Anadromous Fish AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS... regulations governing listed fish and wildlife permits (50 CFR parts 222-226). NMFS issues permits based on.... This project will examine predation by introduced fishes (striped bass, largemouth bass, smallmouth...

  12. Habitat stability, predation risk and 'memory syndromes'.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalesman, S; Rendle, A; Dall, S R X

    2015-05-27

    Habitat stability and predation pressure are thought to be major drivers in the evolutionary maintenance of behavioural syndromes, with trait covariance only occurring within specific habitats. However, animals also exhibit behavioural plasticity, often through memory formation. Memory formation across traits may be linked, with covariance in memory traits (memory syndromes) selected under particular environmental conditions. This study tests whether the pond snail, Lymnaea stagnalis, demonstrates consistency among memory traits ('memory syndrome') related to threat avoidance and foraging. We used eight populations originating from three different habitat types: i) laboratory populations (stable habitat, predator-free); ii) river populations (fairly stable habitat, fish predation); and iii) ditch populations (unstable habitat, invertebrate predation). At a population level, there was a negative relationship between memories related to threat avoidance and food selectivity, but no consistency within habitat type. At an individual level, covariance between memory traits was dependent on habitat. Laboratory populations showed no covariance among memory traits, whereas river populations showed a positive correlation between food memories, and ditch populations demonstrated a negative relationship between threat memory and food memories. Therefore, selection pressures among habitats appear to act independently on memory trait covariation at an individual level and the average response within a population.

  13. Presence of a predator image in potential breeding sites and oviposition responses of a dengue vector.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dieng, Hamady; Satho, Tomomitsu; Suradi, Nur Farrahana Binti; Hakim, Hafijah; Abang, Fatimah; Aliasan, Nur Ezzati; Miake, Fumio; Zuharah, Wan Fatma; Kassim, Nur Faeza A; Majid, Abdul Hafiz A; Fadzly, Nik; Vargas, Ronald E Morales; Morales, Noppawan P; Noweg, Gabriel Tonga

    2017-12-01

    In dengue vector control, attempts to minimize or replace the use of pesticides have mostly involved use of predators, but success has been severely impeded by difficulties associated with financial and environmental costs, predator mass production, and persistence in target habitats. Visual deterrents have been used successfully to control animal pests, in some cases in an effort to replace pesticide use. Despite evidence that visual signals are crucial in site choice for egg deposition by dengue vectors, and that female mosquitoes respond to artificial predation, the role of predator intimidation as it affects the oviposition behavior of dengue vectors remains largely unexplored. Here, we examined the oviposition responses of Aedes aegypti exposed to various mosquito predator pictures. Gravid females were presented with equal opportunities to oviposit in two cups with predator images [Toxorhynchites splendens-TXI, Goldfish (Carassius auratus)-small (SFI) and large (LFI) and Tx. splendens+Goldfish-TXFI] and two others without pictures. Differences in egg deposition were examined between sites with and without these images. When given a chance to oviposit in cups with and without TXI, Ae. aegypti females were similarly attracted to both sites. When provided an opportunity to oviposit in cups displaying pictures of fish (SFI or LFI) and blank cups, egg deposition rates were much lower in the fish picture sites. Females showed a preference for blank cups over TXFI for egg deposition. They also equally avoided cups with pictures of fish, regardless of the size of the picture. Our results indicate that the presence of images of goldfish and their association with Tx. larvae significantly reduced egg deposition by Ae. aegypti, and this was not the case with the predatory larvae alone. The observations that the images of natural predators can repel gravid females of a dengue vector provide novel possibilities to develop effective and inexpensive alternative tools to

  14. Correlations between dioxin-like and indicators PCBs: Potential consequences for environmental studies involving fish or sediment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Babut, M.; Miege, C.; Villeneuve, B.; Abarnou, A.; Duchemin, J.; Marchand, P.; Narbonne, J.F.

    2009-01-01

    Among the numerous PCB congeners, most of the dioxin-like PCBs (DL-PCBs) need to be characterized by hyphenated techniques. It has been shown in several instances that these congeners are well related to the total PCB content in fish. We examined datasets collected mainly in France, on freshwater and marine fish and sediments. A statistical model linking DL- and indicator PCBs was developed for a dataset composed of freshwater fishes, and proved to predict well DL-PCBs from indicator PCBs in all other fish sets, including marine ones. Type II error rates remained low in almost all fish sets. A similar correlation was observed in sediments. Non-dioxin-like PCBs elicit various adverse effects and represent 95% of the total PCBs. A European guideline for them is needed; the correlation between DL- and indicator PCBs could help develop this standard in the future. - Dioxin-like PCBs in fish and maybe sediments are rather well predicted by indicator PCBs.

  15. Predator-induced larval cloning in the sand dollar Dendraster excentricus: might mothers matter?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaughn, Dawn

    2009-10-01

    Predator-induced cloning in echinoid larvae, with reduced size a consequence of cloning, is a dramatic modification of development and a novel response to risks associated with prolonged planktonic development. Recent laboratory studies demonstrate that exposure to stimuli from predators (i.e., fish mucus) induces cloning in the pluteus larvae (plutei) of Dendraster excentricus. However, the timing and incidence of cloning and size reduction of unrelated conspecific plutei differed across experiments. A variable cloning response suggests the effects of such factors as cue quality, egg provisioning, maternal experience, and genetic background, indicating that the potential advantages of cloning as an adaptive response to predators are not available to all larvae. This study tested the hypothesis that cloning in D. excentricus plutei is maternally influenced. Plutei from three half-sibling larval families (different mothers, same father) were exposed to fish mucus for 9 days during early development. Cloning was inferred in a percentage of plutei from each family; however, the rate and success of cloning differed significantly among the larval half-siblings. Unexpectedly, all mucus-treated plutei were smaller and developmentally delayed when compared to all plutei reared in the absence of a mucus stimulus. Thus, while the results from this study support the hypothesis of an influence of mothers on cloning of larval offspring, reduced larval size was a uniform response to fish mucus and did not indicate an effect of mothers. Hypotheses of the developmental effects of fish mucus on larval size with or without successful cloning are discussed.

  16. A potential predator-prey interaction of an American badger and an Agassiz's desert tortoise with a review of badger predation on turtles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Amanda L.; Puffer, Shellie R.; Lovich, Jeffrey E.; Tennant, Laura A.; Arundel, Terry; Vamstad, Michael S.; Brundige, Kathleen D.

    2016-01-01

    The federally threatened Agassiz’s desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) was listed under the U.S. Endangered Species Act in 1990, but thus far, recovery efforts have been unsuccessful (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service [USFWS] 2015). Predation has been identified as a contributing factor to declining G. agassizii populations range-wide (e.g., Esque et al. 2010, Lovich et al. 2014). Understanding and managing for predator-prey dynamics is thus an important part of the recovery and conservation of this threatened species (USFWS 2011). Desert tortoises have a host of predators at all stages of their life cycle. Over 20 species of birds, mammals, and reptiles have been recorded as known or suspected predators (Woodbury and Hardy 1948, Luckenbach 1982, Ernst and Lovich 2009). American badgers (Taxidea taxus, family: Mustelidae) are confirmed excavators of desert tortoise nests (Turner and Berry 1984). They are also suspected predators of adult desert tortoises, a possibility which has been presented in some studies but without empirical verification (Luckenbach 1982, Turner and Berry 1984). Active mostly at night, badgers are solitary, secretive predators (Lindzey 1978, 1982; Armitage 2004) that are extremely difficult to observe in predatory encounters. Recently, strong circumstantial evidence presented by Emblidge et al. (2015) suggests that badgers do prey on adult Agassiz’s desert tortoises based on observations of more than two dozen dead tortoises in the Western Mojave Desert of California. In this note, we present another case of potential badger predation on a large adult desert tortoise in the Sonoran Desert of California. Collectively, these recent two cases potentially indicate that badger predation may be more common and widespread than previously thought. In addition, we review the worldwide literature of badger predation on turtles in general and summarize reported badger observations in Joshua Tree National Park, where our observation occurred, over a

  17. Interactive drivers of activity in a free-ranging estuarine predator.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew D Taylor

    Full Text Available Animal activity patterns evolve as an optimal balance between energy use, energy acquisition, and predation risk, so understanding how animals partition activity relative to extrinsic environmental fluctuations is central to understanding their ecology, biology and physiology. Here we use accelerometry to examine the degree to which activity patterns of an estuarine teleost predator are driven by a series of rhythmic and arrhythmic environmental fluctuations. We implanted free-ranging bream Acanthopagrus australis with acoustic transmitters that measured bi-axial acceleration and pressure (depth, and simultaneously monitored a series of environmental variables (photosynthetically active radiation, tidal height, temperature, turbidity, and lunar phase for a period of approximately four months. Linear modeling showed an interaction between fish activity, light level and tidal height; with activity rates also negatively correlated with fish depth. These patterns highlight the relatively-complex trade-offs that are required to persist in highly variable environments. This study demonstrates how novel acoustic sensor tags can reveal interactive links between environmental cycles and animal behavior.

  18. Macroinvertebrate Prey Availability and Fish Diet Selectivity in Relation to Environmental Variables in Natural and Restoring North San Francisco Bay Tidal Marsh Channels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emily R. Howe

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Tidal marsh wetlands provide important foraging habitat for a variety of estuarine fishes. Prey organisms include benthic–epibenthic macroinvertebrates, neustonic arthropods, and zooplankton. Little is known about the abundance and distribution of interior marsh macroinvertebrate communities in the San Francisco Estuary (estuary. We describe seasonal, regional, and site variation in the composition and abundance of neuston and benthic–epibenthic macroinvertebrates that inhabit tidal marsh channels, and relate these patterns to environmental conditions. We also describe spatial and temporal variation in diets of marsh-associated inland silverside, yellowfin goby, and western mosquitofish. Fish and invertebrates were sampled quarterly from October 2003 to June 2005 at six marsh sites located in three river systems of the northern estuary: Petaluma River, Napa River, and  the west Delta. Benthic/epibenthic macroinvertebrates and neuston responded to environmental variables related to seasonal changes (i.e., temperature, salinity, as well as those related to marsh structure (i.e., vegetation, channel edge. The greatest variation in abundance occurred seasonally for neuston and spatially for benthic–epibenthic organisms, suggesting that each community responds to different environmental drivers. Benthic/epibenthic invertebrate abundance and diversity was lowest in the west Delta, and increased with increasing salinity. Insect abundance increased during the spring and summer, while Collembolan (springtail abundance increased during the winter. Benthic/epibenthic macroinvertebrates dominated fish diets, supplemented by insects, with zooplankton playing a minor role. Diet compositions of the three fish species overlapped considerably, with strong selection indicated for epibenthic crustaceans—a surprising result given the typical classification of Menidia beryllina as a planktivore, Acanthogobius flavimanus as a benthic predator, and Gambusia

  19. Predation by the Dwarf Seahorse on Copepods: Quantifying Motion and Flows Using 3D High Speed Digital Holographic Cinematography - When Seahorses Attack!

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gemmell, Brad; Sheng, Jian; Buskey, Ed

    2008-11-01

    Copepods are an important planktonic food source for most of the world's fish species. This high predation pressure has led copepods to evolve an extremely effective escape response, with reaction times to hydrodynamic disturbances of less than 4 ms and escape speeds of over 500 body lengths per second. Using 3D high speed digital holographic cinematography (up to 2000 frames per second) we elucidate the role of entrainment flow fields generated by a natural visual predator, the dwarf seahorse (Hippocampus zosterae) during attacks on its prey, Acartia tonsa. Using phytoplankton as a tracer, we recorded and reconstructed 3D flow fields around the head of the seahorse and its prey during both successful and unsuccessful attacks to better understand how some attacks lead to capture with little or no detection from the copepod while others result in failed attacks. Attacks start with a slow approach to minimize the hydro-mechanical disturbance which is used by copepods to detect the approach of a potential predator. Successful attacks result in the seahorse using its pipette-like mouth to create suction faster than the copepod's response latency. As these characteristic scales of entrainment increase, a successful escape becomes more likely.

  20. Growth, life history, and species interactions of bluegill sunfish (Lepomis macrochirus) under heavy predation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Belk, Mark Carl [Univ. of Georgia, Athens, GA (United States)

    1992-01-01

    The purpose of this study was, first, to compare growth and life history characteristics of an unfished population of bluegill sunfish (Lepomis macrochirus) in the presence of an abundant predator population to characteristic exhibited by bluegills in typical southeastern US reservoirs where the abundance of predators is reduced, but fishing is increased. The second objective was to determine if differences observed between populations were determined genetically or environmentally.

  1. Synergistic impacts by an invasive amphipod and an invasive fish explain native gammarid extinction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beggel, S; Brandner, J; Cerwenka, A F; Geist, J

    2016-07-14

    Worldwide freshwater ecosystems are increasingly affected by invasive alien species. In particular, Ponto-Caspian gobiid fishes and amphipods are suspected to have pronounced effects on aquatic food webs. However, there is a lack of systematic studies mechanistically testing the potential synergistic effects of invasive species on native fauna. In this study we investigated the interrelations between the invasive amphipod Dikerogammarus villosus and the invasive fish species Neogobius melanostomus in their effects on the native amphipod Gammarus pulex. We hypothesized selective predation by the fish as a driver for displacement of native species resulting in potential extinction of G. pulex. The survival of G. pulex in the presence of N. melanostomus in relation to the presence of D. villosus and availability of shelter was analyzed in the context of behavioural differences between the amphipod species. Gammarus pulex had a significantly higher susceptibility to predation by N. melanostomus compared to D. villosus in all experiments, suggesting preferential predation by this fish on native gammarids. Furthermore, the presence of D. villosus significantly increased the vulnerability of G. pulex to fish predation. Habitat structure was an important factor for swimming activity of amphipods and their mortality, resulting in a threefold decrease in amphipods consumed with shelter habitat structures provided. Behavioral differences in swimming activity were additionally responsible for higher predation rates on G. pulex. Intraguild predation could be neglected within short experimental durations. The results of this study provide evidence for synergistic effects of the two invasive Ponto-Caspian species on the native amphipod as an underlying process of species displacements during invasion processes. Prey behaviour and monotonous habitat structures additionally contribute to the decline of the native gammarid fauna in the upper Danube River and elsewhere.

  2. Shark predation on migrating adult American eels (Anguilla rostrata in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mélanie Béguer-Pon

    Full Text Available In an attempt to document the migratory pathways and the environmental conditions encountered by American eels during their oceanic migration to the Sargasso Sea, we tagged eight silver eels with miniature satellite pop-up tags during their migration from the St. Lawrence River in Québec, Canada. Surprisingly, of the seven tags that successfully transmitted archived data, six were ingested by warm-gutted predators, as observed by a sudden increase in water temperature. Gut temperatures were in the range of 20 to 25°C-too cold for marine mammals but within the range of endothermic fish. In order to identify the eel predators, we compared their vertical migratory behavior with those of satellite-tagged porbeagle shark and bluefin tuna, the only endothermic fishes occurring non-marginally in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. We accurately distinguished between tuna and shark by using the behavioral criteria generated by comparing the diving behavior of these two species with those of our unknown predators. Depth profile characteristics of most eel predators more closely resembled those of sharks than those of tuna. During the first days following tagging, all eels remained in surface waters and did not exhibit diel vertical migrations. Three eels were eaten at this time. Two eels exhibited inverse diel vertical migrations (at surface during the day during several days prior to predation. Four eels were eaten during daytime, whereas the two night-predation events occurred at full moon. Although tagging itself may contribute to increasing the eel's susceptibility to predation, we discuss evidence suggesting that predation of silver-stage American eels by porbeagle sharks may represent a significant source of mortality inside the Gulf of St. Lawrence and raises the possibility that eels may represent a reliable, predictable food resource for porbeagle sharks.

  3. As multiple fish species in large marine ecosystems are harvested ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    CMPTMAC10

    and of other top predators such as marine mammals. This concern ... whereas single-species fishing theory implies that fishing leads to surplus by removing larger, older, less-productive ...... pools (the “cod is not a tuna” problem, Longhurst.

  4. Morphological selection and the evaluation of potential tradeoffs between escape from predators and the climbing of waterfalls in the Hawaiian stream goby Sicyopterus stimpsoni.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blob, Richard W; Kawano, Sandy M; Moody, Kristine N; Bridges, William C; Maie, Takashi; Ptacek, Margaret B; Julius, Matthew L; Schoenfuss, Heiko L

    2010-12-01

    Environmental pressures may vary over the geographic range of a species, exposing subpopulations to divergent functional demands. How does exposure to competing demands shape the morphology of species and influence the divergence of populations? We explored these questions by performing selection experiments on juveniles of the Hawaiian goby Sicyopterus stimpsoni, an amphidromous fish that exhibits morphological differences across portions of its geographic range where different environmental pressures predominate. Juvenile S. stimpsoni face two primary and potentially opposing selective pressures on body shape as they return from the ocean to freshwater streams on islands: (1) avoiding predators in the lower reaches of a stream; and (2) climbing waterfalls to reach the habitats occupied by adults. These pressures differ in importance across the Hawaiian Islands. On the youngest island, Hawai'i, waterfalls are close to shore, thereby minimizing exposure to predators and placing a premium on climbing performance. In contrast, on the oldest major island, Kaua'i, waterfalls have eroded further inland, lengthening the exposure of juveniles to predators before migrating juveniles begin climbing. Both juvenile and adult fish show differences in body shape between these islands that would be predicted to improve evasion of predators by fish from Kaua'i (e.g., taller bodies that improve thrust) and climbing performance for fish from Hawai'i (e.g., narrower bodies that reduce drag), matching the prevailing environmental demand on each island. To evaluate how competing selection pressures and functional tradeoffs contribute to the divergence in body shape observed in S. stimpsoni, we compared selection imposed on juvenile body shape by (1) predation by the native fish Eleotris sandwicensis versus (2) climbing an artificial waterfall (∼100 body lengths). Some variables showed opposing patterns of selection that matched predictions: for example, survivors of predation had

  5. Sand lance: A review of biology and predator relations and annotated bibliography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robards, Martin D.; Willson, Mary F.; Armstrong, Robert H.; Piatt, John F.

    1999-01-01

    Six species of sand lance (Ammodytes) in temperate and boreal regions are currently recognized. Sand lance can occupy a wide range of environmental conditions, but all appear to be dormant predominantly in winter, and one species is in summer also. They lack a swim bladder and spend much of their time buried in specific substrates. Copepods are the primary food. Spawning usually occurs in fall or winter (although some species also spawn in spring), eggs are demersal, and larvae may hatch at times of low food abundance. Sand lance usually occur in schools and are regarded as a relatively high-quality forage fish.Sand lance constitute a major prey for at least some populations of over 100 species of consumer, including 40 species of birds, 12 species of marine mammals, 45 species of fishes, and some invertebrates. Variation in the availability of sand lance (and other forage fishes) can have major effects on the breeding success and survival of their predators. Commercial fishing and other pressures on sand lance populations potentially have ramifying effects on many species of wildlife.The bibliography contains over 1,700 references on the family Ammodytidae, with an emphasis on the genus Ammodytes. Keywords are provided for each reference and have been further organized into taxonomic, geographic, subject, and predator indexes.

  6. Otter ( Lutra lutra ) predation on stocked brown trout ( Salmo trutta ) in two Danish lowland rivers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jacobsen, Lene

    2005-01-01

    This study aimed to evaluate otter predation on stocked trout. Large hatchery-reared trout (16-30 cm) were stocked into two Danish rivers with different fish populations. Otter diet before and after trout stocking was determined by analysing 685 spraints, collected regularly during the 35-day study...... period. Fish composition in the rivers before stocking was assessed by electrofishing. In River Trend, a typical trout river, the proportion of trout in the otter diet increased from 8% before stocking to 33% a few days after stocking. Moreover, trout lengths in the diet changed significantly towards...... the lengths of stocked trout, indicating that newly stocked trout were preferred to wild trout. In River Skals, dominated by cyprinids, there was no change in otter diet after stocking of hatchery trout, i.e., these were ignored by otter. Otter predation should be taken into account together with fish...

  7. Conservation implications when the nest predators are known

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ribic, Christine; Thompson, Frank

    2012-01-01

    Conservation and management of passerines has largely focused on habitat manipulation or restoration because the natural communities on which these birds depend have been destroyed and fragmented. However, productivity is another important aspect of avian conservation, and nest predation can be a large source of nesting mortality for passerines. Recent studies using video surveillance to identify nest predators allow researchers to start evaluating what methods could be used to mitigate nest predation to help passerines of conservation concern. From recent studies, we identified latitudinal and habitat-related patterns in the importance of predator groups that depredate passerine nests. We then reviewed how knowledge of specific nest predators can benefit conservation of bird species of concern. Mammals were the dominant predator group in northern grasslands. Snakes were the dominant predator group in southern habitats. Fire ants were only a nest predator in southern latitudes. Differences in the importance of predator species or groups were likely the result of both their geographic patterns of distribution and habitat preferences. Some direct and indirect predator control measures developed for waterfowl management potentially could be used to benefit passerine productivity. We reviewed three examples-cowbirds, snakes in shrublands, and ground squirrels in grasslands-to illustrate how different predator control strategies may be needed in different situations. Mitigation of passerine nest predation will need to be based on knowledge of predator communities to be effective. This requires large samples of predation events with identified predators; video technology is essential for this task.

  8. Great cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo predation on pikeperch (Sander lucioperca L. in shallow eutrophic lakes in Poland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Traczuk Piotr

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Increases in the population abundance of the piscivorous great cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo has led to conflicts with fisheries. Cormorants are blamed for decreased fish catches in many lakes in Poland. The aim of this paper is to describe to role of pikeperch (Sander lucioperca in the diet of cormorants nesting in a colony on the island in Lake Warnołty. Since the breeding colony is located in the vicinity of Lake OEniardwy, the largest lake in Poland, the cormorants use the resources in this lake. In 2009-2016, 18,432 regurgitated fish were collected, of which 593 were pikeperch. The share of pikeperch among fish collected in 2009-2012 did not exceed 2%, but from 2013 this increased substantially to maximum of 38.2% in 2015. The smallest pikeperch had a standard length of 8.4 cm, and the largest 42.5 cm. Pikeperch mean length differed by year, and the length distribution was close to normal. The sizes of the regurgitated pikeperch indicate that cormorants prey almost exclusively on juvenile specimens. The results of the present study indicate that cormorant predation has a significant impact on pikeperch populations in lakes in the vicinity of the colony, and the great cormorants are possibly a significant factor in the effectiveness of pikeperch management. When planning for the management of fish populations in lakes subjected to cormorant predation pressure, it should be borne in mind that predation by this piscivorous bird species impacts the abundance and size-age structure of fish populations.

  9. Squidpops: A Simple Tool to Crowdsource a Global Map of Marine Predation Intensity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J Emmett Duffy

    Full Text Available We present a simple, standardized assay, the squidpop, for measuring the relative feeding intensity of generalist predators in aquatic systems. The assay consists of a 1.3-cm diameter disk of dried squid mantle tethered to a rod, which is either inserted in the sediment in soft-bottom habitats or secured to existing structure. Each replicate squidpop is scored as present or absent after 1 and 24 hours, and the data for analysis are proportions of replicate units consumed at each time. Tests in several habitats of the temperate southeastern USA (Virginia and North Carolina and tropical Central America (Belize confirmed the assay's utility for measuring variation in predation intensity among habitats, among seasons, and along environmental gradients. In Belize, predation intensity varied strongly among habitats, with reef > seagrass = mangrove > unvegetated bare sand. Quantitative visual surveys confirmed that assayed feeding intensity increased with abundance and species richness of fishes across sites, with fish abundance and richness explaining up to 45% and 70% of the variation in bait loss respectively. In the southeastern USA, predation intensity varied seasonally, being highest during summer and declining in late autumn. Deployments in marsh habitats generally revealed a decline in mean predation intensity from fully marine to tidal freshwater sites. The simplicity, economy, and standardization of the squidpop assay should facilitate engagement of scientists and citizens alike, with the goal of constructing high-resolution maps of how top-down control varies through space and time in aquatic ecosystems, and addressing a broad array of long-standing hypotheses in macro- and community ecology.

  10. Flowing water affects fish fast-starts: escape performance of the Hawaiian stream goby, Sicyopterus stimpsoni.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diamond, Kelly M; Schoenfuss, Heiko L; Walker, Jeffrey A; Blob, Richard W

    2016-10-01

    Experimental measurements of escape performance in fishes have typically been conducted in still water; however, many fishes inhabit environments with flow that could impact escape behavior. We examined the influences of flow and predator attack direction on the escape behavior of fish, using juveniles of the amphidromous Hawaiian goby Sicyopterus stimpsoni In nature, these fish must escape ambush predation while moving through streams with high-velocity flow. We measured the escape performance of juvenile gobies while exposing them to a range of water velocities encountered in natural streams and stimulating fish from three different directions. Frequency of response across treatments indicated strong effects of flow conditions and attack direction. Juvenile S. stimpsoni had uniformly high response rates for attacks from a caudal direction (opposite flow); however, response rates for attacks from a cranial direction (matching flow) decreased dramatically as flow speed increased. Mechanical stimuli produced by predators attacking in the same direction as flow might be masked by the flow environment, impairing the ability of prey to detect attacks. Thus, the likelihood of successful escape performance in fishes can depend critically on environmental context. © 2016. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  11. Global patterns in marine predatory fish

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    van Denderen, Pieter Daniël; Lindegren, Martin; MacKenzie, Brian

    2017-01-01

    known. Here, we show how latitudinal differences in predatory fish can essentially be explained by the inflow of energy at the base of the pelagic and benthic food chain. A low productive benthic energy pathway favours large pelagic species, whereas equal productivities support large demersal......Large teleost (bony) fish are a dominant group of predators in the oceans and constitute a major source of food and livelihood for humans. These species differ markedly in morphology and feeding habits across oceanic regions; large pelagic species such as tunas and billfish typically occur...... in the tropics, whereas demersal species of gadoids and flatfish dominate boreal and temperate regions. Despite their importance for fisheries and the structuring of marine ecosystems, the underlying factors determining the global distribution and productivity of these two groups of teleost predators are poorly...

  12. A tropical horde of counterfeit predator eyes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janzen, Daniel H; Hallwachs, Winnie; Burns, John M

    2010-06-29

    We propose that the many different, but essentially similar, eye-like and face-like color patterns displayed by hundreds of species of tropical caterpillars and pupae-26 examples of which are displayed here from the dry, cloud, and rain forests of Area de Conservacion Guanacaste (ACG) in northwestern Costa Rica-constitute a huge and pervasive mimicry complex that is evolutionarily generated and sustained by the survival behavior of a large and multispecific array of potential predators: the insect-eating birds. We propose that these predators are variously and innately programmed to flee when abruptly confronted, at close range, with what appears to be an eye of one of their predators. Such a mimetic complex differs from various classical Batesian and Müllerian mimicry complexes of adult butterflies in that (i) the predators sustain it for the most part by innate traits rather than by avoidance behavior learned through disagreeable experiences, (ii) the more or less harmless, sessile, and largely edible mimics vastly outnumber the models, and (iii) there is no particular selection for the eye-like color pattern to closely mimic the eye or face of any particular predator of the insect-eating birds or that of any other member of this mimicry complex. Indeed, selection may not favor exact resemblance among these mimics at all. Such convergence through selection could create a superabundance of one particular false eyespot or face pattern, thereby increasing the likelihood of a bird species or guild learning to associate that pattern with harmless prey.

  13. Energetic conditions promoting top-down control of prey by predators.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristin N Marshall

    Full Text Available Humans remove large amounts of biomass from natural ecosystems, and large bodied high trophic level animals are especially sensitive and vulnerable to exploitation. The effects of removing top-predators on food webs are often difficult to predict because of limited information on species interaction strengths. Here we used a three species predator-prey model to explore relationships between energetic properties of trophodynamic linkages and interaction strengths to provide heuristic rules that indicate observable energetic conditions that are most likely to lead to stable and strong top-down control of prey by predator species. We found that strong top-down interaction strengths resulted from low levels of energy flow from prey to predators. Strong interactions are more stable when they are a consequence of low per capita predation and when predators are subsidized by recruitment. Diet composition also affects stability, but the relationship depends on the form of the functional response. Our results imply that for generalist satiating predators, strong top-down control on prey is most likely for prey items that occupy a small portion of the diet and when density dependent recruitment is moderately high.

  14. The Impact of Epifaunal Predation on the Structure of Macroinfaunal Invertebrate Communities of Tidal Saltmarsh Creeks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sardá, R.; Foreman, K.; Werme, C. E.; Valiela, I.

    1998-05-01

    The impact of epibenthic predators foraging on macroinfaunal communities was analysed in Great Sippewissett salt marsh (MA, U.S.A.) by installing experimental cages in the most productive sediments of the marsh (77 g dry weight m -2year -1). The most productive macroinfaunal species in these sediments were Marenzelleria viridis(43·1 g dry weight m -2year -1) Heteromastus filiformis(13·7 g dry weight m -2year -1) and Neanthes arenaceodonta(7·6 g dry weight m -2year -1). Macroinfaunal densities peaked in June following the spring recruitment. Density and biomass inside the cages were significantly higher during the growing season, however, density declined in July and August following the seasonal cycle observed outside cages, while biomass did not suffer this decline. The absence of epibenthic predators favored growth and accumulation of larger organisms, especially M. viridis, and included higher presence of predaceous infauna ( Glycera americana, Neanthes succinea, Neanthes virens, Eteone heteropodaand Nemerteans). At the end of the experiment, there was 22·2 g dry weight m -2more macroinfaunal biomass in the complete cages than in ambient sediments. The absence of epibenthic predators also increased secondary production; M. viridisdoubled production in the sediments inside cages compared with outside cages. The most common benthic predaceous fishes in the marsh were the killifishes, Fundulus heteroclitusand Fundulus majalis, and some seasonal invasive fishes ( Gasterosteus aculeatus, Tautoga onitis, Centropristes striatusand Pleuronectes americanus). While invasive fishes preyed mainly on benthic invertebrates and grew faster, resident fishes shifted their diets through the season. The values of macroinfaunal secondary production obtained in these sediments can support the energy requirements of the predators of the marsh; in this way the pulse of secondary production created by the macroinfaunal populations travels up the saltmarsh food web.

  15. Habitat stability, predation risk and ‘memory syndromes’

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalesman, S.; Rendle, A.; Dall, S.R.X.

    2015-01-01

    Habitat stability and predation pressure are thought to be major drivers in the evolutionary maintenance of behavioural syndromes, with trait covariance only occurring within specific habitats. However, animals also exhibit behavioural plasticity, often through memory formation. Memory formation across traits may be linked, with covariance in memory traits (memory syndromes) selected under particular environmental conditions. This study tests whether the pond snail, Lymnaea stagnalis, demonstrates consistency among memory traits (‘memory syndrome’) related to threat avoidance and foraging. We used eight populations originating from three different habitat types: i) laboratory populations (stable habitat, predator-free); ii) river populations (fairly stable habitat, fish predation); and iii) ditch populations (unstable habitat, invertebrate predation). At a population level, there was a negative relationship between memories related to threat avoidance and food selectivity, but no consistency within habitat type. At an individual level, covariance between memory traits was dependent on habitat. Laboratory populations showed no covariance among memory traits, whereas river populations showed a positive correlation between food memories, and ditch populations demonstrated a negative relationship between threat memory and food memories. Therefore, selection pressures among habitats appear to act independently on memory trait covariation at an individual level and the average response within a population. PMID:26013966

  16. Damped trophic cascades driven by fishing in model marine ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Ken Haste; Pedersen, Martin

    2010-01-01

    The largest perturbation on upper trophic levels of many marine ecosystems stems from fishing. The reaction of the ecosystem goes beyond the trophic levels directly targeted by the fishery. This reaction has been described either as a change in slope of the overall size spectrum or as a trophic...... cascade triggered by the removal of top predators. Here we use a novel size- and trait-based model to explore how marine ecosystems might react to perturbations from different types of fishing pressure. The model explicitly resolves the whole life history of fish, from larvae to adults. The results show...... that fishing does not change the overall slope of the size spectrum, but depletes the largest individuals and induces trophic cascades. A trophic cascade can propagate both up and down in trophic levels driven by a combination of changes in predation mortality and food limitation. The cascade is damped...

  17. Ocean acidification alters fish populations indirectly through habitat modification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagelkerken, Ivan; Russell, Bayden D.; Gillanders, Bronwyn M.; Connell, Sean D.

    2016-01-01

    Ocean ecosystems are predicted to lose biodiversity and productivity from increasing ocean acidification. Although laboratory experiments reveal negative effects of acidification on the behaviour and performance of species, more comprehensive predictions have been hampered by a lack of in situ studies that incorporate the complexity of interactions between species and their environment. We studied CO2 vents from both Northern and Southern hemispheres, using such natural laboratories to investigate the effect of ocean acidification on plant-animal associations embedded within all their natural complexity. Although we substantiate simple direct effects of reduced predator-avoidance behaviour by fishes, as observed in laboratory experiments, we here show that this negative effect is naturally dampened when fish reside in shelter-rich habitats. Importantly, elevated CO2 drove strong increases in the abundance of some fish species through major habitat shifts, associated increases in resources such as habitat and prey availability, and reduced predator abundances. The indirect effects of acidification via resource and predator alterations may have far-reaching consequences for population abundances, and its study provides a framework for a more comprehensive understanding of increasing CO2 emissions as a driver of ecological change.

  18. Ontogeny of antipredator performance in hatchery-reared Japanese anchovy Engraulis japonicus larvae exposed to visual or tactile predators in relation to turbidity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohata, R; Masuda, R; Yamashita, Y

    2011-12-01

    Laboratory experiments revealed distinct effects of turbidity on the survival of Japanese anchovy Engraulis japonicus larvae when exposed to either visual (jack mackerel Trachurus japonicus) or tactile (moon jellyfish Aurelia aurita) predators. The experiments were conducted in 30 l tanks with three levels of turbidity obtained by dissolving 0, 50 or 300 mg l(-1) of kaolin. Predators were introduced to experimental tanks followed by larvae of E. japonicus ranging from 5 to 25 mm standard lengths (L(s) ). When exposed to T. japonicus, the mean survival rate of larvae was significantly higher in 300 mg l(-1) treatments compared to the other turbidity levels. When exposed to A. aurita, however, there was no difference in the survival rates among different turbidity treatments. The survival rates when exposed to either predator improved with larval growth. The logistic survivorship models for E. japonicus larvae when exposed to A. aurita had an inflection point at c. 12 mm L(s) , suggesting that their size refuge from A. aurita is close to this value. Comparison to a previous study suggests a high vulnerability of shirasu (long and transparent) fish larvae to jellyfish predation under turbidity. This study indicates that anthropogenic increases of turbidity in coastal waters may increase the relative effect of jellyfish predation on fish larvae. © 2011 The Authors. Journal of Fish Biology © 2011 The Fisheries Society of the British Isles.

  19. Effects of predation and food on the population dynamics of the raptorial cladoceran Leptodora kindtii

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vijverberg, J.; Koelewijn, H.P.; Densen, van W.L.T.

    2005-01-01

    We assessed the trophic status of Leptodora kindtii in the food web of a shallow, eutrophic lake in which 0+ age group fish were the main predators. The mean biomass of 0+ fish during three successive years varied from 0.39 g dry wt m(-2) in the first year to 0.05 g dry wt m(-2)in the second year to

  20. Effects of predation and food on the population dynamics of the raptorial cladoceran Leptodora kindtii

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vijverberg, J.; Koelewijn, H.P.; Van Densen, W.L.T.

    2005-01-01

    We assessed the trophic status of Leptodora kindtii in the food web of a shallow, eutrophic lake in which 0+ age group fish were the main predators. The mean biomass of 0+ fish during three successive years varied from 0.39 g dry wt m-2 in the first year to 0.05 g dry wt m-22 in the second year to

  1. Bayesian inference reveals positive but subtle effects of experimental fishery closures on marine predator demographics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barham, Barbara J.; Barham, Peter J.; Campbell, Kate J.; Crawford, Robert J. M.; Grigg, Jennifer; Horswill, Cat; Morris, Taryn L.; Pichegru, Lorien; Steinfurth, Antje; Weller, Florian; Winker, Henning

    2018-01-01

    Global forage-fish landings are increasing, with potentially grave consequences for marine ecosystems. Predators of forage fish may be influenced by this harvest, but the nature of these effects is contentious. Experimental fishery manipulations offer the best solution to quantify population-level impacts, but are rare. We used Bayesian inference to examine changes in chick survival, body condition and population growth rate of endangered African penguins Spheniscus demersus in response to 8 years of alternating time–area closures around two pairs of colonies. Our results demonstrate that fishing closures improved chick survival and condition, after controlling for changing prey availability. However, this effect was inconsistent across sites and years, highlighting the difficultly of assessing management interventions in marine ecosystems. Nevertheless, modelled increases in population growth rates exceeded 1% at one colony; i.e. the threshold considered biologically meaningful by fisheries management in South Africa. Fishing closures evidently can improve the population trend of a forage-fish-dependent predator—we therefore recommend they continue in South Africa and support their application elsewhere. However, detecting demographic gains for mobile marine predators from small no-take zones requires experimental time frames and scales that will often exceed those desired by decision makers. PMID:29343602

  2. On burst-and-coast swimming performance in fish-like locomotion

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chung, M-H

    2009-01-01

    Burst-and-coast swimming performance in fish-like locomotion is studied via two-dimensional numerical simulation. The numerical method used is the collocated finite-volume adaptive Cartesian cut-cell method developed previously. The NACA00xx airfoil shape is used as an equilibrium fish-body form. Swimming in a burst-and-coast style is computed assuming that the burst phase is composed of a single tail-beat. Swimming efficiency is evaluated in terms of the mass-specific cost of transport instead of the Froude efficiency. The effects of the Reynolds number (based on the body length and burst time), duty cycle and fineness ratio (the body length over the largest thickness) on swimming performance (momentum capacity and the mass-specific cost of transport) are studied quantitatively. The results lead to a conclusion consistent with previous findings that a larval fish seldom swims in a burst-and-coast style. Given mass and swimming speed, a fish needs the least cost if it swims in a burst-and-coast style with a fineness ratio of 8.33. This energetically optimal fineness ratio is larger than that derived from the simple hydromechanical model proposed in literature. The calculated amount of energy saving in burst-and-coast swimming is comparable with the real-fish estimation in the literature. Finally, the predicted wake-vortex structures of both continuous and burst-and-coast swimming are biologically relevant.

  3. On burst-and-coast swimming performance in fish-like locomotion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chung, M-H

    2009-09-01

    Burst-and-coast swimming performance in fish-like locomotion is studied via two-dimensional numerical simulation. The numerical method used is the collocated finite-volume adaptive Cartesian cut-cell method developed previously. The NACA00xx airfoil shape is used as an equilibrium fish-body form. Swimming in a burst-and-coast style is computed assuming that the burst phase is composed of a single tail-beat. Swimming efficiency is evaluated in terms of the mass-specific cost of transport instead of the Froude efficiency. The effects of the Reynolds number (based on the body length and burst time), duty cycle and fineness ratio (the body length over the largest thickness) on swimming performance (momentum capacity and the mass-specific cost of transport) are studied quantitatively. The results lead to a conclusion consistent with previous findings that a larval fish seldom swims in a burst-and-coast style. Given mass and swimming speed, a fish needs the least cost if it swims in a burst-and-coast style with a fineness ratio of 8.33. This energetically optimal fineness ratio is larger than that derived from the simple hydromechanical model proposed in literature. The calculated amount of energy saving in burst-and-coast swimming is comparable with the real-fish estimation in the literature. Finally, the predicted wake-vortex structures of both continuous and burst-and-coast swimming are biologically relevant.

  4. Inbreeding and adaptive plasticity: an experimental analysis on predator-induced responses in the water flea Daphnia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swillen, Ine; Vanoverbeke, Joost; De Meester, Luc

    2015-01-01

    Several studies have emphasized that inbreeding depression (ID) is enhanced under stressful conditions. Additionally, one might imagine a loss of adaptively plastic responses which may further contribute to a reduction in fitness under environmental stress. Here, we quantified ID in inbred families of the cyclical parthenogen Daphnia magna in the absence and presence of fish predation risk. We test whether predator stress affects the degree of ID and if inbred families have a reduced capacity to respond to predator stress by adaptive phenotypic plasticity. We obtained two inbred families through clonal selfing within clones isolated from a fish pond. After mild purging under standardized conditions, we compared life history traits and adaptive plasticity between inbred and outbred lineages (directly hatched from the natural dormant egg bank of the same pond). Initial purging of lineages under standardized conditions differed among inbred families and exceeded that in outbreds. The least purged inbred family exhibited strong ID for most life history traits. Predator-induced stress hardly affected the severity of ID, but the degree to which the capacity for adaptive phenotypic plasticity was retained varied strongly among the inbred families. The least purged family overall lacked the capacity for adaptive phenotypic plasticity, whereas the family that suffered only mild purging exhibited a potential for adaptive plasticity that was comparable to the outbred population. We thus found that inbred offspring may retain the capacity to respond to the presence of fish by adaptive phenotypic plasticity, but this strongly depends on the parental clone engaging in selfing. PMID:26257883

  5. Impact of marine reserve on maximum sustainable yield in a traditional prey-predator system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paul, Prosenjit; Kar, T. K.; Ghorai, Abhijit

    2018-01-01

    Multispecies fisheries management requires managers to consider the impact of fishing activities on several species as fishing impacts both targeted and non-targeted species directly or indirectly in several ways. The intended goal of traditional fisheries management is to achieve maximum sustainable yield (MSY) from the targeted species, which on many occasions affect the targeted species as well as the entire ecosystem. Marine reserves are often acclaimed as the marine ecosystem management tool. Few attempts have been made to generalize the ecological effects of marine reserve on MSY policy. We examine here how MSY and population level in a prey-predator system are affected by the low, medium and high reserve size under different possible scenarios. Our simulation works shows that low reserve area, the value of MSY for prey exploitation is maximum when both prey and predator species have fast movement rate. For medium reserve size, our analysis revealed that the maximum value of MSY for prey exploitation is obtained when prey population has fast movement rate and predator population has slow movement rate. For high reserve area, the maximum value of MSY for prey's exploitation is very low compared to the maximum value of MSY for prey's exploitation in case of low and medium reserve. On the other hand, for low and medium reserve area, MSY for predator exploitation is maximum when both the species have fast movement rate.

  6. Relationships between fish, sea urchins and macroalgae: The structure of shallow rocky sublittoral communities in the Cyclades, Eastern Mediterranean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giakoumi, Sylvaine; Cebrian, Emma; Kokkoris, Giorgos D.; Ballesteros, Enric; Sala, Enric

    2012-08-01

    Historical overfishing is the most likely explanation for the depletion of the shallow sublittoral communities in many areas not least in the Cyclades Archipelago, Greece. The present study is the first quantitative study of the shallow rocky sublittoral of the Cyclades based on in situ underwater surveys of algal cover, and fish and sea urchin abundance at 181 sampling sites in 25 islands to provide a baseline and investigate the relationship between these communities. Algal turf was the most abundant algal functional group, and canopy algae of the genus Cystoseira were more abundant at the northern islands. A range in fish biomass of almost two orders of magnitude was found across islands, but overall the Cyclades displayed much lower values than fished areas of the Western Mediterranean. We observed apex predators only in 25% of our sampling sites, and their biomass was uncorrelated to total fish biomass, indicating a depleted ecosystem. Sea urchin biomass was also low but similar to values found in other Mediterranean islands and was positively correlated with barrens. We observed a gradient of benthic community complexity from sea urchin barrens to communities dominated by Cystoseira spp. There was no correlation between sea urchins and their predators Diplodus spp., which presented extremely low densities.

  7. The Ecology of Coral Reef Top Predators in the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan J. Dale

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Coral reef habitats in the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument (PMNM are characterized by abundant top-level predators such as sharks and jacks. The predator assemblage is dominated both numerically and in biomass by giant trevally (Caranx ignobilis and Galapagos sharks (Carcharhinus galapagensis. A lower diversity of predatory teleosts, particularly groupers and snappers, distinguishes the PMNM from other remote, unfished atolls in the Pacific. Most coral reef top predators are site attached to a “home” atoll, but move extensively within these atolls. Abundances of the most common sharks and jacks are highest in atoll fore reef habitats. Top predators within the PMNM forage on a diverse range of prey and exert top-down control over shallow-water reef fish assemblages. Ecological models suggest ecosystem processes may be most impacted by top predators through indirect effects of predation. Knowledge gaps are identified to guide future studies of top predators in the PMNM.

  8. A carapace-like bony 'body tube' in an early triassic marine reptile and the onset of marine tetrapod predation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Xiao-hong; Motani, Ryosuke; Cheng, Long; Jiang, Da-yong; Rieppel, Olivier

    2014-01-01

    Parahupehsuchus longus is a new species of marine reptile from the Lower Triassic of Yuan'an County, Hubei Province, China. It is unique among vertebrates for having a body wall that is completely surrounded by a bony tube, about 50 cm long and 6.5 cm deep, comprising overlapping ribs and gastralia. This tube and bony ossicles on the back are best interpreted as anti-predatory features, suggesting that there was predation pressure upon marine tetrapods in the Early Triassic. There is at least one sauropterygian that is sufficiently large to feed on Parahupehsuchus in the Nanzhang-Yuan'an fauna, together with six more species of potential prey marine reptiles with various degrees of body protection. Modern predators of marine tetrapods belong to the highest trophic levels in the marine ecosystem but such predators did not always exist through geologic time. The indication of marine-tetrapod feeding in the Nanzhang-Yuan'an fauna suggests that such a trophic level emerged for the first time in the Early Triassic. The recovery from the end-Permian extinction probably proceeded faster than traditionally thought for marine predators. Parahupehsuchus has superficially turtle-like features, namely expanded ribs without intercostal space, very short transverse processes, and a dorsal outgrowth from the neural spine. However, these features are structurally different from their turtle counterparts. Phylogeny suggests that they are convergent with the condition in turtles, which has a fundamentally different body plan that involves the folding of the body wall. Expanded ribs without intercostal space evolved at least twice and probably even more among reptiles.

  9. A carapace-like bony 'body tube' in an early triassic marine reptile and the onset of marine tetrapod predation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiao-hong Chen

    Full Text Available Parahupehsuchus longus is a new species of marine reptile from the Lower Triassic of Yuan'an County, Hubei Province, China. It is unique among vertebrates for having a body wall that is completely surrounded by a bony tube, about 50 cm long and 6.5 cm deep, comprising overlapping ribs and gastralia. This tube and bony ossicles on the back are best interpreted as anti-predatory features, suggesting that there was predation pressure upon marine tetrapods in the Early Triassic. There is at least one sauropterygian that is sufficiently large to feed on Parahupehsuchus in the Nanzhang-Yuan'an fauna, together with six more species of potential prey marine reptiles with various degrees of body protection. Modern predators of marine tetrapods belong to the highest trophic levels in the marine ecosystem but such predators did not always exist through geologic time. The indication of marine-tetrapod feeding in the Nanzhang-Yuan'an fauna suggests that such a trophic level emerged for the first time in the Early Triassic. The recovery from the end-Permian extinction probably proceeded faster than traditionally thought for marine predators. Parahupehsuchus has superficially turtle-like features, namely expanded ribs without intercostal space, very short transverse processes, and a dorsal outgrowth from the neural spine. However, these features are structurally different from their turtle counterparts. Phylogeny suggests that they are convergent with the condition in turtles, which has a fundamentally different body plan that involves the folding of the body wall. Expanded ribs without intercostal space evolved at least twice and probably even more among reptiles.

  10. 75 FR 28642 - Limiting Mountain Lion Predation on Desert Bighorn Sheep on Kofa National Wildlife Refuge, Yuma...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-05-21

    ... DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Fish and Wildlife Service [FWS-R2-R-2009-N274] [22570-1261-0000-K2] Limiting Mountain Lion Predation on Desert Bighorn Sheep on Kofa National Wildlife Refuge, Yuma and La Paz Counties, AZ AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION: Notice of availability of the final...

  11. Development of a systemwide predator control program: Stepwise implementation of a predation index, predator control fisheries, and evaluation plan in the Columbia River Basin. Section 1: Implementation. Annual report 1994

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Willis, C.F.; Young, F.R.

    1995-09-01

    The authors report the results from the forth year of a basinwide program to harvest northern squawfish (Ptychocheilus oregonensis) in an effort to reduce mortality due to northern squawfish predation on juvenile salmonids during their emigration from natal streams to the ocean. Earlier work in the Columbia River Basin suggested predation by northern squawfish on juvenile salmonids may account for most of the 10--20% mortality juvenile salmonids experience in each of eight Columbia and Snake River reservoirs. Modeling simulations based on work in John Day Reservoir from 1982 through 1988 indicated it is not necessary to eradicate northern squawfish to substantially reduce predation-caused mortality of juvenile salmonids. Instead, if northern squawfish were exploited at a 10--20% rate, reductions in numbers of larger, older fish resulting in restructuring of their population could reduce their predation on juvenile salmonids by 50% or more. Consequently, the authors designed and tested a sport-reward angling fishery and a commercial longline fishery in the John Day pool in 1990. They also conducted an angling fishery in areas inaccessible to the public at four dams on the mainstem Columbia River and at Ice Harbor Dam on the Snake River. Based on the success of these limited efforts, they implemented three test fisheries on a multi-pool, or systemwide, scale in 1991--a tribal longline fishery above Bonneville Dam, a sport-reward fishery, and a dam-angling fishery

  12. Predators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Donald D.; McCabe, Thomas R.; Ambrose, Robert E.; Garner, Gerald W.; Weiler, Greg J.; Reynolds, Harry V.; Udevitz, Mark S.; Reed, Dan J.; Griffith, Brad; Douglas, David C.; Reynolds, Patricia E.; Rhode, E.B.

    2002-01-01

    Calving caribou (Rangifer tarandus) of the Central Arctic herd, Alaska, have avoided the infrastructure associated with the complex of petroleum development areas from Prudhoe Bay to Kuparuk (Cameron et al. 1992, Nellemann and Cameron 1998, and Section 4 of this document). Calving females of the Porcupine caribou herd may similarly avoid any oil field roads and pipelines developed in areas traditionally used during the calving and post-calving periods. This may displace the caribou females and calves to areas east and south of the 1002 Area of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.Increased calf mortality could occur if calving caribou are displaced into areas that have a higher density of predators, higher rates of predation, or where a higher proportion of the predators regularly use caribou as a food source (Whitten et al. 1992).Our study assessed predation risks to caribou calving in the 1002 Area versus calving in potential displacement areas. Due to funding constraints, our research focused on grizzly bears (Ursus arctos), with wolves (Camus lupus) and golden eagles (Aquila chrysaetos) receiving only cursory attention. Our research objectives were 1) to compare relative abundance of predators within the 1002 Area with that in adjacent peripheral areas, 2) to determine factors affecting predator abundance on the calving grounds, and 3) to quantify the use of caribou as a food source for predators and the importance of caribou to the productivity of predator populations using the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

  13. Influence of predator density on nonindependent effects of multiple predator species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffen, Blaine D; Williamson, Tucker

    2008-02-01

    Interactions between multiple predator species are frequent in natural communities and can have important implications for shared prey survival. Predator density may be an important component of these interactions between predator species, as the frequency of interactions between species is largely determined by species density. Here we experimentally examine the importance of predator density for interactions between predator species and subsequent impacts on prey. We show that aggressive interactions between the predatory shore crabs Carcinus maenas and Hemigrapsus sanguineus increased with predator density, yet did not increase as fast as negative interactions between conspecifics. At low density, interactions between conspecific and heterospecific predators had similar inhibitory impacts on predator function, whereas conspecific interference was greater than interference from heterospecifics at high predator density. Thus the impact of conspecific interference at high predator density was sufficient in itself that interactions with a second predator species had no additional impact on per capita predation. Spatial and temporal variability in predator density is a ubiquitous characteristic of natural systems that should be considered in studies of multiple predator species.

  14. Fatty acid composition of freshwater wild fish in subalpine lakes: a comparative study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vasconi, Mauro; Caprino, Fabio; Bellagamba, Federica; Busetto, Maria Letizia; Bernardi, Cristian; Puzzi, Cesare; Moretti, Vittorio Maria

    2015-03-01

    In this study, the proximate and fatty acid compositions of the muscle tissue of 186 samples of fish belonging to fifteen species of freshwater fish harvested in subalpine lakes (bleak, shad, crucian carp, whitefish, common carp, pike, black bullhead, burbot, perch, Italian roach, roach, rudd, wels catfish, chub and tench) were investigated. Most of the fish demonstrated a lipid content in the fillet lower than 2.0 g 100 g(-1) wet weight (range 0.6-9.7). A strong relationship between feeding behavior and fatty acid composition of the muscle lipids was observed. Planktivorous fish showed the lowest amounts of n-3 fatty acids (p fish showed the highest amounts of saturated fatty acids and n-3 fatty acids (p fish showed substantial proportions of n-3 fatty acids and the highest contents of n-6 fatty acids. Principal component analysis showed a distinct separation between fish species according to their feeding habits and demonstrated that the most contributing trophic markers were 18:1n-9, 18:3n-3, 22:6n-3 and 20:4n-6. The quantitative amounts n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid in muscle tissues varied depending on the fish species, the lipid content and the feeding habits. Some species were very lean, and therefore would be poor choices for human consumption to meet dietary n-3 fatty acid requirements. Nevertheless, the more frequently consumed and appreciated fish, shad and whitefish, had EPA and DHA contents in the range 900-1,000 mg 100 g(-1) fresh fillet.

  15. Community shelter use in response to two benthic decapod predators in the Long Island Sound.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hudson, David M; Reagan, Dugan; Crivello, Joseph F

    2016-01-01

    To investigate community shelter effects of two invasive decapod species, Hemigrapsus sanguineus and Carcinus maenas, in the Long Island Sound (LIS), we deployed artificial shelters in the intertidal and immediate subtidal zones. These consisted of five groups during the summer: a control, a resident H. sanguineus male or female group, and a resident C. maenas male or female group. We quantified utilization of the shelters at 24 h by counting crabs and fish present. We found significant avoidance of H. sanguineus in the field by benthic hermit crabs (Pagurus spp.) and significant avoidance of C. maenas by the seaboard goby (Gobiosoma ginsburgi). The grubby (Myoxocephalus aenaeus) avoided neither treatment, probably since it tends to be a predator of invertebrates. H. sanguineus avoided C. maenas treatments, whereas C. maenas did not avoid any treatment. Seasonal deployments in the subtidal indicated cohabitation of a number of benthic species in the LIS, with peak shelter use corresponding with increased predation and likely reproductive activity in spring and summer for green crabs (C. maenas), hermit crabs (Pagurus spp.), seaboard gobies (G. ginsburgi), and grubbies (Myoxocephalus aenaeus).

  16. Small but powerful: top predator local extinction affects ecosystem structure and function in an intermittent stream.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez-Lozano, Pablo; Verkaik, Iraima; Rieradevall, Maria; Prat, Narcís

    2015-01-01

    Top predator loss is a major global problem, with a current trend in biodiversity loss towards high trophic levels that modifies most ecosystems worldwide. Most research in this area is focused on large-bodied predators, despite the high extinction risk of small-bodied freshwater fish that often act as apex consumers. Consequently, it remains unknown if intermittent streams are affected by the consequences of top-predators' extirpations. The aim of our research was to determine how this global problem affects intermittent streams and, in particular, if the loss of a small-bodied top predator (1) leads to a 'mesopredator release', affects primary consumers and changes whole community structures, and (2) triggers a cascade effect modifying the ecosystem function. To address these questions, we studied the top-down effects of a small endangered fish species, Barbus meridionalis (the Mediterranean barbel), conducting an enclosure/exclosure mesocosm experiment in an intermittent stream where B. meridionalis became locally extinct following a wildfire. We found that top predator absence led to 'mesopredator release', and also to 'prey release' despite intraguild predation, which contrasts with traditional food web theory. In addition, B. meridionalis extirpation changed whole macroinvertebrate community composition and increased total macroinvertebrate density. Regarding ecosystem function, periphyton primary production decreased in apex consumer absence. In this study, the apex consumer was functionally irreplaceable; its local extinction led to the loss of an important functional role that resulted in major changes to the ecosystem's structure and function. This study evidences that intermittent streams can be affected by the consequences of apex consumers' extinctions, and that the loss of small-bodied top predators can lead to large ecosystem changes. We recommend the reintroduction of small-bodied apex consumers to systems where they have been extirpated, to restore

  17. Small but powerful: top predator local extinction affects ecosystem structure and function in an intermittent stream.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pablo Rodríguez-Lozano

    Full Text Available Top predator loss is a major global problem, with a current trend in biodiversity loss towards high trophic levels that modifies most ecosystems worldwide. Most research in this area is focused on large-bodied predators, despite the high extinction risk of small-bodied freshwater fish that often act as apex consumers. Consequently, it remains unknown if intermittent streams are affected by the consequences of top-predators' extirpations. The aim of our research was to determine how this global problem affects intermittent streams and, in particular, if the loss of a small-bodied top predator (1 leads to a 'mesopredator release', affects primary consumers and changes whole community structures, and (2 triggers a cascade effect modifying the ecosystem function. To address these questions, we studied the top-down effects of a small endangered fish species, Barbus meridionalis (the Mediterranean barbel, conducting an enclosure/exclosure mesocosm experiment in an intermittent stream where B. meridionalis became locally extinct following a wildfire. We found that top predator absence led to 'mesopredator release', and also to 'prey release' despite intraguild predation, which contrasts with traditional food web theory. In addition, B. meridionalis extirpation changed whole macroinvertebrate community composition and increased total macroinvertebrate density. Regarding ecosystem function, periphyton primary production decreased in apex consumer absence. In this study, the apex consumer was functionally irreplaceable; its local extinction led to the loss of an important functional role that resulted in major changes to the ecosystem's structure and function. This study evidences that intermittent streams can be affected by the consequences of apex consumers' extinctions, and that the loss of small-bodied top predators can lead to large ecosystem changes. We recommend the reintroduction of small-bodied apex consumers to systems where they have been

  18. Changes to zooplankton community structure following colonization of a small lake by Leptodora kindti

    Science.gov (United States)

    McNaught, A.S.; Kiesling, R.L.; Ghadouani, A.

    2004-01-01

    The predaceous cladoceran Leptodora kindti (Focke) became established in Third Sister Lake, Michigan, after individuals escaped from experimental enclosures in 1987. By 1988, the Leptodora population exhibited seasonal dynamics characteristic of natural populations. The maximum seasonal abundance of Leptodora increased to 85 individuals m-3 3 yr following the introduction. After the appearance of Leptodora, small-bodied cladocerans (Ceriodaphnia and Bosmina) virtually disappeared from the lake. There were strong seasonal shifts in the dominance patterns of both cladocerans and copepods, and Daphnia species diversity increased. Results from this unplanned introduction suggest that invertebrate predators can have a rapid and lasting effect on prey populations, even in the presence of planktivorous fish. Small-scale (<20 km) geographic barriers might be as important as large-scale barriers to dispersal of planktonic animals.

  19. Predator avoidance during reproduction: diel movements by spawning sockeye salmon between stream and lake habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bentley, Kale T; Schindler, Daniel E; Cline, Timothy J; Armstrong, Jonathan B; Macias, Daniel; Ciepiela, Lindsy R; Hilborn, Ray

    2014-11-01

    Daily movements of mobile organisms between habitats in response to changing trade-offs between predation risk and foraging gains are well established; however, less in known about whether similar tactics are used during reproduction, a time period when many organisms are particularly vulnerable to predators. We investigated the reproductive behaviour of adult sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) and the activity of their principal predator, brown bears (Ursus arctos), on streams in south-western Alaska. Specifically, we continuously monitored movements of salmon between lake habitat, where salmon are invulnerable to bears, and three small streams, where salmon spawn and are highly vulnerable to bears. We conducted our study across 2 years that offered a distinct contrast in bear activity and predation rates. Diel movements by adult sockeye salmon between stream and lake habitat were observed in 51.3% ± 17.7% (mean ± SD) of individuals among years and sites. Fish that moved tended to hold in the lake for most of the day and then migrated into spawning streams during the night, coincident with when bear activity on streams tended to be lowest. Additionally, cyclic movements between lakes and spawning streams were concentrated earlier in the spawning season. Individuals that exhibited diel movements had longer average reproductive life spans than those who made only one directed movement into a stream. However, the relative effect was dependent on the timing of bear predation, which varied between years. When predation pressure primarily occurred early in the spawning run (i.e., during the height of the diel movements), movers lived 120-310% longer than non-movers. If predation pressure was concentrated later in the spawning run (i.e. when most movements had ceased), movers only lived 10-60% longer. Our results suggest a dynamic trade-off in reproductive strategies of sockeye salmon; adults must be in the stream to reproduce, but must also avoid predation long

  20. Modelling predation by transient leopard seals for an ecosystem-based management of Southern Ocean fisheries

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forcada, J.; Royle, J. Andrew; Staniland, I.J.

    2009-01-01

    Correctly quantifying the impacts of rare apex marine predators is essential to ecosystem-based approaches to fisheries management, where harvesting must be sustainable for targeted species and their dependent predators. This requires modelling the uncertainty in such processes as predator life history, seasonal abundance and movement, size-based predation, energetic requirements, and prey vulnerability. We combined these uncertainties to evaluate the predatory impact of transient leopard seals on a community of mesopredators (seals and penguins) and their prey at South Georgia, and assess the implications for an ecosystem-based management. The mesopredators are highly dependent on Antarctic krill and icefish, which are targeted by regional fisheries. We used a state-space formulation to combine (1) a mark-recapture open-population model and individual identification data to assess seasonally variable leopard seal arrival and departure dates, numbers, and residency times; (2) a size-based bioenergetic model; and (3) a size-based prey choice model from a diet analysis. Our models indicated that prey choice and consumption reflected seasonal changes in leopard seal population size and structure, size-selective predation and prey vulnerability. A population of 104 (90?125) leopard seals, of which 64% were juveniles, consumed less than 2% of the Antarctic fur seal pup production of the area (50% of total ingested energy, IE), but ca. 12?16% of the local gentoo penguin population (20% IE). Antarctic krill (28% IE) were the only observed food of leopard seal pups and supplemented the diet of older individuals. Direct impacts on krill and fish were negligible, but the ?escapement? due to leopard seal predation on fur seal pups and penguins could be significant for the mackerel icefish fishery at South Georgia. These results suggest that: (1) rare apex predators like leopard seals may control, and may depend on, populations of mesopredators dependent on prey species

  1. Evidence for contact calls in fish: conspecific vocalisations and ambient soundscape influence group cohesion in a nocturnal species

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Oosterom, L.; Montgomery, J. C.; Jeffs, A. G.; Radford, C. A.

    2016-01-01

    Soundscapes provide a new tool for the study of fish communities. Bigeyes (Pempheris adspersa) are nocturnal planktivorous reef fish, feed in loose shoals and are soniferous. These vocalisations have been suggested to be contact calls to maintain group cohesion, however direct evidence for this is absent, despite the fact that contact calls are well documented for many other vertebrates, including marine mammals. For fish, direct evidence for group cohesion signals is restricted to the use of visual and hydrodynamic cues. In support of adding vocalisation as a contributing cue, our laboratory experiments show that bigeyes significantly increased group cohesion when exposed to recordings of ambient reef sound at higher sound levels while also decreasing vocalisations. These patterns of behaviour are consistent with acoustic masking. When exposed to playback of conspecific vocalisations, the group cohesion and vocalisation rates of bigeyes both significantly increased. These results provide the first direct experimental support for the hypotheses that vocalisations are used as contact calls to maintain group cohesion in fishes, making fish the evolutionarily oldest vertebrate group in which this phenomenon has been observed, and adding a new dimension to the interpretation of nocturnal reef soundscapes.

  2. Heavy metals in fish from the Aleutians: Interspecific and locational differences

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Burger, Joanna, E-mail: burger@biology.rutgers.edu [Division of Life Sciences, Rutgers University, 604 Allison Road, Piscataway, NJ (United States); Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences Institute, Rutgers University, Piscataway, NJ (United States); Consortium for Risk Evaluation with Stakeholder Participation, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN 37235 (United States); Gochfeld, Michael [Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences Institute, Rutgers University, Piscataway, NJ (United States); Consortium for Risk Evaluation with Stakeholder Participation, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN 37235 (United States); Environmental and Occupational Medicine, Rutgers-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, Piscataway, NJ 08854 (United States); Jeitner, Christian; Pittfield, Taryn [Division of Life Sciences, Rutgers University, 604 Allison Road, Piscataway, NJ (United States); Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences Institute, Rutgers University, Piscataway, NJ (United States); Consortium for Risk Evaluation with Stakeholder Participation, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN 37235 (United States); Donio, Mark [Division of Life Sciences, Rutgers University, 604 Allison Road, Piscataway, NJ (United States)

    2014-05-01

    The objectives of this study were to examine levels of arsenic, cadmium, lead, mercury and selenium in edible tissue of seven species of marine fish collected from several Aleutian islands (in 2004) to determine: (1) interspecific differences, (2) locational differences (among Aleutian Islands), (3) size-related differences in any metal levels within a species, and (4) potential risk to the fish or to predators on the fish, including humans. We also compared metals levels to those of three other fish species previously examined in detail, as well as examining metals in the edible tissue of octopus (Octopus dofleini). Octopus did not have the highest levels of any metal. There were significant interspecific differences in all metal levels among the fish species, although the differences were less than an order of magnitude, except for arsenic (mean of 19,500 ppb in Flathead sole, Hippoglossoides elassodon). Significant intraisland variation occurred among the four sites on Amchitka, but there was not a consistent pattern. There were significant interisland differences for some metals and species. Mercury levels increased significantly with size for several species; lead increased significantly for only one fish species; and cadmium and selenium decreased significantly with size for halibut (Hippoglossus stenolepis). The Alaskan Department of Health and Social Services supports unrestricted consumption of most Alaskan fish species for all people, including pregnant women. Most mean metal concentrations were well below the levels known to adversely affect the fish themselves, or predators that consume them (including humans), except for mercury in three fish species (mean levels just below 0.3 ppm), and arsenic in two fish species. However, even at low mercury levels, people who consume fish almost daily will exceed guideline values from the Centers for Disease Control and the Environmental Protection Agency. - Highlights: • Cadmium, lead, mercury and selenium

  3. Heavy metals in fish from the Aleutians: Interspecific and locational differences

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Burger, Joanna; Gochfeld, Michael; Jeitner, Christian; Pittfield, Taryn; Donio, Mark

    2014-01-01

    The objectives of this study were to examine levels of arsenic, cadmium, lead, mercury and selenium in edible tissue of seven species of marine fish collected from several Aleutian islands (in 2004) to determine: (1) interspecific differences, (2) locational differences (among Aleutian Islands), (3) size-related differences in any metal levels within a species, and (4) potential risk to the fish or to predators on the fish, including humans. We also compared metals levels to those of three other fish species previously examined in detail, as well as examining metals in the edible tissue of octopus (Octopus dofleini). Octopus did not have the highest levels of any metal. There were significant interspecific differences in all metal levels among the fish species, although the differences were less than an order of magnitude, except for arsenic (mean of 19,500 ppb in Flathead sole, Hippoglossoides elassodon). Significant intraisland variation occurred among the four sites on Amchitka, but there was not a consistent pattern. There were significant interisland differences for some metals and species. Mercury levels increased significantly with size for several species; lead increased significantly for only one fish species; and cadmium and selenium decreased significantly with size for halibut (Hippoglossus stenolepis). The Alaskan Department of Health and Social Services supports unrestricted consumption of most Alaskan fish species for all people, including pregnant women. Most mean metal concentrations were well below the levels known to adversely affect the fish themselves, or predators that consume them (including humans), except for mercury in three fish species (mean levels just below 0.3 ppm), and arsenic in two fish species. However, even at low mercury levels, people who consume fish almost daily will exceed guideline values from the Centers for Disease Control and the Environmental Protection Agency. - Highlights: • Cadmium, lead, mercury and selenium

  4. Feeding Activity, Rate of Consumption, Daily Ration and Prey Selection of Major Predators in John Day Reservoir, 1984 : Annual Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gray, Gerard A.; United States. Bonneville Power Administration; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; National Fishery Research Center (U.S.)

    1986-07-01

    The extent of predation on juvenile salmonids in John Day Reservoir was determined. Salmonids were the single most important food item by weight for northern squawfish (Ptychocheilus oregonensis) in the restricted zones at McNary tailrace and John Day forebay during all sampling periods. Salmonids accounted for 18.1% of the weight in the diet of walleyes (Stizostedion vitreum vitreum) in 1984 which was at least twice that found in previous years. In smallmouth bass (Micropterus dolomieui) salmonids contributed little to their diet whereas for channel catfish (Ictalurus punctatus) fish accounted for 64.1% of the weight in their diet with salmonids responsible for approximately half of this weight. An intensive search of the fisheries literature was conducted to review various fish capture and control techniques which might have potential as predation control measures for the major predators of juvenile salmonids in the Columbia River system. Most prey protection measures were judged to have high potential and direct predator control measures were judged to have moderate or low potential.

  5. Invasive Lionfish Drive Atlantic Coral Reef Fish Declines

    OpenAIRE

    Green, Stephanie; Akins, John; Maljković, Aleksandra; Cote, Isabelle

    2012-01-01

    Indo-Pacific lionfish (Pterois volitans and P. miles) have spread swiftly across the Western Atlantic, producing a marine predator invasion of unparalleled speed and magnitude. There is growing concern that lionfish will affect the structure and function of invaded marine ecosystems, however detrimental impacts on natural communities have yet to be measured. Here we document the response of native fish communities to predation by lionfish populations on nine coral reefs off New Providence Isl...

  6. Potential direct and indirect effects of climate change on a shallow natural lake fish assemblage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breeggemann, Jason J.; Kaemingk, Mark A.; DeBates, T.J.; Paukert, Craig P.; Krause, J.; Letvin, Alexander P.; Stevens, Tanner M.; Willis, David W.; Chipps, Steven R.

    2015-01-01

    Much uncertainty exists around how fish communities in shallow lakes will respond to climate change. In this study, we modelled the effects of increased water temperatures on consumption and growth rates of two piscivores (northern pike [Esox lucius] and largemouth bass [Micropterus salmoides]) and examined relative effects of consumption by these predators on two prey species (bluegill [Lepomis macrochirus] and yellow perch [Perca flavescens]). Bioenergetics models were used to simulate the effects of climate change on growth and food consumption using predicted 2040 and 2060 temperatures in a shallow Nebraska Sandhill lake, USA. The patterns and magnitude of daily and cumulative consumption during the growing season (April–October) were generally similar between the two predators. However, growth of northern pike was always reduced (−3 to −45% change) compared to largemouth bass that experienced subtle changes (4 to −6% change) in weight by the end of the growing season. Assuming similar population size structure and numbers of predators in 2040–2060, future consumption of bluegill and yellow perch by northern pike and largemouth bass will likely increase (range: 3–24%), necessitating greater prey biomass to meet future energy demands. The timing of increased predator consumption will likely shift towards spring and fall (compared to summer), when prey species may not be available in the quantities required. Our findings suggest that increased water temperatures may affect species at the edge of their native range (i.e. northern pike) and a potential mismatch between predator and prey could exist.

  7. Allometric relations and consequences for feeding in small pelagic fish in the Bay of Biscay

    KAUST Repository

    Bachiller, Eneko; Irigoien, Xabier

    2012-01-01

    The body size of fish is an important factor in determining their biology and ecology, as predators eat prey smaller than themselves. Predator mouth size restricts the availability of possible prey. In this paper we provide the allometric

  8. Information theory and robotics meet to study predator-prey interactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neri, Daniele; Ruberto, Tommaso; Cord-Cruz, Gabrielle; Porfiri, Maurizio

    2017-07-01

    Transfer entropy holds promise to advance our understanding of animal behavior, by affording the identification of causal relationships that underlie animal interactions. A critical step toward the reliable implementation of this powerful information-theoretic concept entails the design of experiments in which causal relationships could be systematically controlled. Here, we put forward a robotics-based experimental approach to test the validity of transfer entropy in the study of predator-prey interactions. We investigate the behavioral response of zebrafish to a fear-evoking robotic stimulus, designed after the morpho-physiology of the red tiger oscar and actuated along preprogrammed trajectories. From the time series of the positions of the zebrafish and the robotic stimulus, we demonstrate that transfer entropy correctly identifies the influence of the stimulus on the focal subject. Building on this evidence, we apply transfer entropy to study the interactions between zebrafish and a live red tiger oscar. The analysis of transfer entropy reveals a change in the direction of the information flow, suggesting a mutual influence between the predator and the prey, where the predator adapts its strategy as a function of the movement of the prey, which, in turn, adjusts its escape as a function of the predator motion. Through the integration of information theory and robotics, this study posits a new approach to study predator-prey interactions in freshwater fish.

  9. The distribution of seabirds and fish in relation to ocean currents in the southeastern Chukchi Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piatt, John F.; Wells, John L.; MacCharles, Andrea; Fadely, Brian S.; Montevecchi, W.A.; Gaston, A.J.

    1991-01-01

    In late August 1988, we studied the distribution of seabirds in the southeastern Chukchi Sea, particularly in waters near a major seabird colony at Cape Thompson. Foraging areas were characterized using hydrographic data obtained from hydroacoustic surveys for fish. Murres (Uria spp.) and Black-legged Kitttiwakes Rissa tridactyla breeding at Cape Thompson fed mostly on Arctic cod, which are known from previous studies to be the most abundant pelagic fish in the region. Our hydroacoustic surveys revealed that pelagic fish were distributed widely, but densities were estimated to be low (e.g., 0.1-10 g∙m-3) throughout the study area and a few schools were recorded. Large feeding flocks of murres and kittiwakes were observed over fish schools with densities estimated to exceed 15 g∙m-3. Fish densities were higher in shallow Alaska Coastal Current waters than offshore in Bering Sea waters, and most piscivorous seabirds foraged in coastal waters. Poor kittiwake breeding success and a low frequency of fish in murre and kittiwake stomachs in late August suggested that fish densities were marginal for sustaining breeding seabirds at that time. Planktivorous Least Auklets Aethia pusilla and Parakeet Auklets Cyclorrhynchus psittacula foraged almost exclusively in Bering Sea waters. Short-tailed Shearwaters Puffinus tenuirostris and Tufted Puffins Fratercula cirrhata foraged in transitional waters at the front between Coastal and Bering Sea currents.

  10. Reduction of dioxin-like toxicity in effluents by additional wastewater treatment and related effects in fish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maier, Diana; Benisek, Martin; Blaha, Ludek; Dondero, Francesco; Giesy, John P; Köhler, Heinz-R; Richter, Doreen; Scheurer, Marco; Triebskorn, Rita

    2016-10-01

    Efficiency of advanced wastewater treatment technologies to reduce micropollutants which mediate dioxin-like toxicity was investigated. Technologies compared included ozonation, powdered activated carbon and granular activated carbon. In addition to chemical analyses in samples of effluents, surface waters, sediments, and fish, (1) dioxin-like potentials were measured in paired samples of effluents, surface waters, and sediments by use of an in vitro biotest (reporter gene assay) and (2) dioxin-like effects were investigated in exposed fish by use of in vivo activity of the mixed-function, monooxygenase enzyme, ethoxyresorufin O-deethylase (EROD) in liver. All advanced technologies studied, based on degradation or adsorption, significantly reduced dioxin-like potentials in samples and resulted in lesser EROD activity in livers of fish. Results of in vitro and in vivo biological responses were not clearly related to quantification of targeted analytes by use of instrumental analyses. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. A real-time PCR approach to detect predation on anchovy and sardine early life stages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuende, Elsa; Mendibil, Iñaki; Bachiller, Eneko; Álvarez, Paula; Cotano, Unai; Rodriguez-Ezpeleta, Naiara

    2017-12-01

    Recruitment of sardine (Sardina pilchardus Walbaum, 1792) and anchovy (Engraulis encrasicolus Linnaeus, 1758) is thought to be regulated by predation of their eggs and larvae. Predators of sardine and anchovy can be identified by visual taxonomic identification of stomach contents, but this method is time consuming, tedious and may underestimate predation, especially in small predators such as fish larvae. Alternatively, genetic tools may offer a more cost-effective and accurate alternative. Here, we have developed a multiplex real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) assay based on TaqMan probes to simultaneously detect sardine and anchovy remains in gut contents of potential predators. The assay combines previously described and newly generated species-specific primers and probes for anchovy and sardine detection respectively, and allows the detection of 0,001 ng of target DNA (which corresponds to about one hundredth of the total DNA present in a single egg). We applied the method to candidate anchovy and sardine egg predators in the Bay of Biscay, Atlantic Mackerel (Scomber scombrus) larvae. Egg predation observed was limited primarily to those stations where sardine and/or anchovy eggs were present. Our developed assay offers a suitable tool to understand the effects of predation on the survival of anchovy and sardine early life stages.

  12. Radiological impact of the nuclear power plant accident on freshwater fish in Fukushima: An overview of monitoring results

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wada, Toshihiro; Tomiya, Atsushi; Enomoto, Masahiro; Sato, Toshiyuki; Morishita, Daigo; Izumi, Shigehiko; Niizeki, Kouji; Suzuki, Shunji; Morita, Takami; Kawata, Gyo

    2016-01-01

    Radionuclide ("1"3"1I, "1"3"4Cs, and "1"3"7Cs) concentrations of monitored freshwater fish species collected from different habitats (rivers, lakes, and culture ponds) in Fukushima Prefecture during March 2011–December 2014 (total 16 species, n = 2692) were analyzed to present a detailed description of radionuclide contamination after the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant (FDNPP) accident, and to elucidate species-specific spatiotemporal declining trends of "1"3"7Cs concentration for their respective habitats. Low concentrations of "1"3"1I (≤24 Bq kg"−"1-wet) were detected from only 11 samples collected during March–June 2011, demonstrating that "1"3"1I transferred to freshwater fish were not intense. In river and lake fishes, a more gradual decrease and higher radiocesium ("1"3"4Cs, "1"3"7Cs) concentrations were observed than in culture pond fishes, which strongly implied that radiocesium in freshwater fish species was mainly bioaccumulated through the food web in the wild. During 2011–2014, percentages above the Japanese regulatory limit of 100 Bq kg"−"1-wet for radiocesium in river and lake fish (14.0% and 39.6%, respectively) were higher than in monitored marine fish (9.9%), indicating longer-term contamination of freshwater fish species, especially in lakes. Higher radiocesium concentrations (maximum 18.7 kBq kg"−"1-wet in Oncorhynchus masou) were found in the northwestern areas from the FDNPP with higher deposition. However, radiocesium contamination levels were regarded as 1–2 orders of magnitude less than those after the Chernobyl accident. Lagged increase of "1"3"7Cs concentration and longer ecological half-lives (T_e_c_o: 1.2–2.6 y in the central part of Fukushima Prefecture) were observed in carnivorous salmonids (O. masou, Salvelinus leucomaenis), whereas a rapid increase and decrease of "1"3"7Cs concentration and shorter T_e_c_o (0.99 and 0.69 y) were found in herbivorous and planktivorous osmerids (Plecoglossus

  13. A Global Analysis of the Relationship between Concentrations of Microcystins in Water and Fish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natalie M. Flores

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Cyanobacteria, the primary bloom-forming organisms in fresh water, elicit a spectrum of problems in lentic systems. The most immediate concern for people and animals are cyanobacterial toxins, which have been detected at variable concentrations in water and fish around the world. Cyanotoxins can transfer through food webs, potentially increasing the risk of exposure to people who eat fish from affected waters, yet little is known about how cyanotoxins fluctuate in wild fish tissues. We collated existing studies on cyanotoxins in fish and fresh water from lakes around the world into a global dataset to test the hypothesis that cyanotoxin concentrations in fish increase with water toxin concentrations. We limited our quantitative analysis to microcystins because data on other cyanotoxins in fish were sparse, but we provided a qualitative summary of other cyanotoxins reported in wild, freshwater fish tissues. We found a positive relationship between intracellular microcystin in water samples and microcystin in fish tissues that had been analyzed by assay methods (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and protein phosphatase inhibition assay. We expected microcystin to be found in increasingly higher concentrations from carnivorous to omnivorous to planktivorous fishes. We found, however, that omnivores generally had the highest tissue microcystin concentrations. Additionally, we found contrasting results for the level of microcystin in different tissue types depending on the toxin analysis method. Because microcystin and other cyanotoxins have the potential to impact public health, our results underline the current need for comprehensive and uniform detection methods for the analysis of cyanotoxins in complex matrices.

  14. Brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis extinction in small boreal lakes revealed by ephippia pigmentation: a preliminary analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandre Bérubé Tellier

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Ephippium pigmentation is a plastic trait which can be related to a trade-off between visual predation pressure and better protection of cladoceran eggs against different types of stress. Experimental studies showed that planktivorous fish exert a greater predation pressure on individuals carrying darker ephippia, but little is known about the variation of ephippium pigmentation along gradients of fish predation pressure in natural conditions. For this study, our experimental design included four small boreal lakes with known fish assemblages. Two of the lakes have viable brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis populations, whereas the other two lakes experienced brook trout extinctions during the 20th century. Cladoceran ephippia were extracted from sediment cores at layers corresponding to the documented post- extinction phase (1990's and from an older layer (1950's for which the brook trout population status is not known precisely. Our first objective was to determine whether brook trout extinction has a direct effect on both ephippium pigmentation and size. Our second objective was to give a preliminary assessment of the status of brook trout populations in the 1950's by comparing the variation in ephippia traits measured from this layer to those measured in the 1990's, for which the extinction patterns are well known. Cost-effective image analysis was used to assess variation in pigmentation levels in ephippia. This approach provided a proxy for the amount of melanin invested in each ephippium analysed. Our study clearly shows that ephippium pigmentation may represent a better indicator of the presence of fish predators than ephippium size, a trait that showed a less clear pattern of variation between lakes with and without fish. For the 1990's period, ephippia from fishless lakes were darker and showed a slight tendency to be larger than ephippia from lakes with brook trout. However, no clear differences in either ephippium size or pigmentation

  15. Straight line foraging in yellow-eyed penguins: new insights into cascading fisheries effects and orientation capabilities of marine predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattern, Thomas; Ellenberg, Ursula; Houston, David M; Lamare, Miles; Davis, Lloyd S; van Heezik, Yolanda; Seddon, Philip J

    2013-01-01

    Free-ranging marine predators rarely search for prey along straight lines because dynamic ocean processes usually require complex search strategies. If linear movement patterns occur they are usually associated with travelling events or migratory behaviour. However, recent fine scale tracking of flying seabirds has revealed straight-line movements while birds followed fishing vessels. Unlike flying seabirds, penguins are not known to target and follow fishing vessels. Yet yellow-eyed penguins from New Zealand often exhibit directed movement patterns while searching for prey at the seafloor, a behaviour that seems to contradict common movement ecology theories. While deploying GPS dive loggers on yellow-eyed penguins from the Otago Peninsula we found that the birds frequently followed straight lines for several kilometres with little horizontal deviation. In several cases individuals swam up and down the same line, while some of the lines were followed by more than one individual. Using a remote operated vehicle (ROV) we found a highly visible furrow on the seafloor most likely caused by an otter board of a demersal fish trawl, which ran in a straight line exactly matching the trajectory of a recent line identified from penguin tracks. We noted high abundances of benthic scavengers associated with fisheries-related bottom disturbance. While our data demonstrate the acute way-finding capabilities of benthic foraging yellow-eyed penguins, they also highlight how hidden cascading effects of coastal fisheries may alter behaviour and potentially even population dynamics of marine predators, an often overlooked fact in the examination of fisheries' impacts.

  16. Straight line foraging in yellow-eyed penguins: new insights into cascading fisheries effects and orientation capabilities of marine predators.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Mattern

    Full Text Available Free-ranging marine predators rarely search for prey along straight lines because dynamic ocean processes usually require complex search strategies. If linear movement patterns occur they are usually associated with travelling events or migratory behaviour. However, recent fine scale tracking of flying seabirds has revealed straight-line movements while birds followed fishing vessels. Unlike flying seabirds, penguins are not known to target and follow fishing vessels. Yet yellow-eyed penguins from New Zealand often exhibit directed movement patterns while searching for prey at the seafloor, a behaviour that seems to contradict common movement ecology theories. While deploying GPS dive loggers on yellow-eyed penguins from the Otago Peninsula we found that the birds frequently followed straight lines for several kilometres with little horizontal deviation. In several cases individuals swam up and down the same line, while some of the lines were followed by more than one individual. Using a remote operated vehicle (ROV we found a highly visible furrow on the seafloor most likely caused by an otter board of a demersal fish trawl, which ran in a straight line exactly matching the trajectory of a recent line identified from penguin tracks. We noted high abundances of benthic scavengers associated with fisheries-related bottom disturbance. While our data demonstrate the acute way-finding capabilities of benthic foraging yellow-eyed penguins, they also highlight how hidden cascading effects of coastal fisheries may alter behaviour and potentially even population dynamics of marine predators, an often overlooked fact in the examination of fisheries' impacts.

  17. A Carapace-Like Bony ‘Body Tube’ in an Early Triassic Marine Reptile and the Onset of Marine Tetrapod Predation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Xiao-hong; Motani, Ryosuke; Cheng, Long; Jiang, Da-yong; Rieppel, Olivier

    2014-01-01

    Parahupehsuchus longus is a new species of marine reptile from the Lower Triassic of Yuan’an County, Hubei Province, China. It is unique among vertebrates for having a body wall that is completely surrounded by a bony tube, about 50 cm long and 6.5 cm deep, comprising overlapping ribs and gastralia. This tube and bony ossicles on the back are best interpreted as anti-predatory features, suggesting that there was predation pressure upon marine tetrapods in the Early Triassic. There is at least one sauropterygian that is sufficiently large to feed on Parahupehsuchus in the Nanzhang-Yuan’an fauna, together with six more species of potential prey marine reptiles with various degrees of body protection. Modern predators of marine tetrapods belong to the highest trophic levels in the marine ecosystem but such predators did not always exist through geologic time. The indication of marine-tetrapod feeding in the Nanzhang-Yuan’an fauna suggests that such a trophic level emerged for the first time in the Early Triassic. The recovery from the end-Permian extinction probably proceeded faster than traditionally thought for marine predators. Parahupehsuchus has superficially turtle-like features, namely expanded ribs without intercostal space, very short transverse processes, and a dorsal outgrowth from the neural spine. However, these features are structurally different from their turtle counterparts. Phylogeny suggests that they are convergent with the condition in turtles, which has a fundamentally different body plan that involves the folding of the body wall. Expanded ribs without intercostal space evolved at least twice and probably even more among reptiles. PMID:24718682

  18. Do predators influence the distribution of age-0 kokanee in a Colorado Reservoir?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hardiman, J.M.; Johnson, B.M.; Martinez, P.J.

    2004-01-01

    Seasonal changes in reservoir conditions such as productivity, light, and temperature create spatiotemporal variation in habitat that may segregate or aggregate predators and prey, producing implications for the distribution, growth, and survival of fishes. We used hydroacoustics to document the diel vertical distribution of age-0 kokanee Oncorhynchus nerka relative to environmental gradients at Blue Mesa Reservoir, Colorado, during May-August of 2002. Temperature, light, and zooplankton density profiles were examined relative to foraging conditions for kokanee and their primary predator, lake trout Salvelinus namaycush. Age-0 kokanee displayed large diel vertical migrations in May despite the lack of an energetic advantage before reservoir stratification. Age-0 kokanee minimized near-surface foraging at this time, perhaps to avoid predation by visual predators, such as lake trout, in the well-lit surface waters. Strong reservoir stratification in midsummer appeared to provide a thermal refuge from lake trout that the kokanee exploited. By August vertical migrations were shallow and most kokanee remained in the epilimnion throughout the day. Although the energetic implications of the late-summer strategy are unclear, it appears that kokanee were responding to changes in their predator environment. A robust model for kokanee diel vertical migration across a range of systems should include a predator avoidance component.

  19. The consequences of balanced harvesting of fish communities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jacobsen, Nis Sand; Gislason, Henrik; Andersen, Ken Haste

    2014-01-01

    community structure and yield. We use a size- and trait-based model that resolves individual interactions through competition and predation to compare balanced harvesting with traditional selective harvesting, which protects juvenile fish from fishing. Four different exploitation patterns, generated......Balanced harvesting, where species or individuals are exploited in accordance with their productivity, has been proposed as a way to minimize the effects of fishing on marine fish communities and ecosystems. This calls for a thorough examination of the consequences balanced harvesting has on fish...... by combining selective or unselective harvesting with balanced or unbalanced fishing, are compared. We find that unselective balanced fishing, where individuals are exploited in proportion to their productivity, produces a slightly larger total maximum sustainable yield than the other exploitation patterns and...

  20. The importance of high-level predators in marine protected area management: Consequences of their decline and their potential recovery in the Mediterranean context

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giulia Prato

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available High-level predators have been depleted in the oceans worldwide following centuries of selective fishing. There is widespread evidence that high-level predators’ extirpation may trigger trophic cascades leading to the degradation of marine ecosystems. Restoration of large carnivores to former levels of abundance might lead to ecosystem recovery, but very few pristine ecosystems are left as baselines for comparison. Marine protected areas (MPAs can trigger initial rapid increases of high-level predator abundance and biomass. Nevertheless, long term protection is needed before the ecosystem's carrying capacity for large carnivores is approached and indirect effects on lower trophic levels are observed. The Mediterranean is probably very far from its pristine condition, due to a long history of fishing. Today small to medium-sized consumers (e.g. sea breams are the most abundant predators shaping coastal benthic communities, while historical reconstructions depict abundant populations of large piscivores and sharks inhabiting coastal areas. Mediterranean MPAs are following a promising trajectory of ecosystem recovery, as suggested by a strong gradient of fish biomass increase. Consistent monitoring methods to assess relative variations of high-level predators, together with food-web models aimed at disentangling the indirect effects of their recovery, could be useful tools to help set up appropriate management strategies of MPAs.

  1. Juvenile Chinook Salmon mortality in a Snake River Reservoir: Smallmouth Bass predation revisited

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erhardt, John M.; Tiffan, Kenneth F.; Connor, William P.

    2018-01-01

    Predation by nonnative fishes has been identified as a contributing factor in the decline of juvenile salmonids in the Columbia River basin. We examined the diet composition of Smallmouth Bass Micropterus dolomieu and estimated the consumption and predation loss of juvenile Chinook Salmon Oncorhynchus tshawytscha in Lower Granite Reservoir on the Snake River. We examined 4,852 Smallmouth Bass stomachs collected from shoreline habitats during April–September 2013–2015. Chinook Salmon were the second most commonly consumed fish by all size‐classes of Smallmouth Bass (≥150 mm TL) throughout the study. Over the 3 years studied, we estimated that a total of 300,373 Chinook Salmon were consumed by Smallmouth Bass in our 22‐km study area, of which 97% (291,884) were subyearlings (age 0) based on length frequency data. A majority of the loss (61%) occurred during June, which coincided with the timing of hatchery releases of subyearling fall Chinook Salmon. Compared to an earlier study, mean annual predation loss increased more than 15‐fold from 2,670 Chinook Salmon during 1996–1997 to 41,145 Chinook Salmon during 2013–2015 (in reaches that could be compared), despite lower contemporary Smallmouth Bass abundances. This increase can be explained in part by increases in Smallmouth Bass consumption rates, which paralleled increases in subyearling Chinook Salmon densities—an expected functional response by an opportunistic consumer. Smallmouth Bass are currently significant predators of subyearling Chinook Salmon in Lower Granite Reservoir and could potentially be a large source of unexplained mortality.

  2. Development of an Index to Bird Predation of Juvenile Salmonids within the Yakima River, 1999 Annual Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gassley, James M.; Grue, Christian E. (University of Washington, School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences, Seattle, WA)

    2001-10-01

    Avian predation of fish is suspected to contribute to the loss of juvenile spring chinook salmon in the Yakima Basin, potentially constraining natural production. In 1997 and 1998, the Yakama/Klickitat Fisheries Project (YKFP) and the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW)--whose goal is to increase natural production historically present within the Yakima River--initiated investigations to assess the feasibility of developing an index to avian predation of juvenile salmon within the river. This research--conducted by Dr. Steve Mathews and David Phinney of the University of Washington--confirmed that Ring-billed Gulls and Common Mergansers were the primary avian predators of juvenile salmon, and that under certain conditions could significantly impact migrating smolt populations. Beginning in 1999, the Washington Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit was asked by the YKFP and the WDFW to continue development of avian consumption indices. Monitoring methods developed by Mathews and Phinney were adopted (with modifications) and monitoring of impacts to juvenile salmon along river reaches and at areas of high predator/prey concentrations (colloquially referred to as ''hotspots'') continued. New efforts initiated in 1999 included piscivorous bird surveys at smolt acclimation sites operated by the Yakama Nation, monitoring of the North Fork Teanaway River for changes in avian piscivore abundance associated with the installation of the Jack Creek acclimation facility, and aerial surveys seeking to identify avian piscivores along the length of the Yakima River. In 1999, piscivorous birds were counted from river banks at hotspots and from a raft or drift boat along river reaches. Consumption by gulls was based on direct observations of foraging success and modeled abundance; consumption by Common Mergansers (which forage underwater) was estimated using published dietary requirements and modeled abundance. A second-order polynomial

  3. Development of an Index to Bird Predation of Juvenile Salmonids within the Yakima River, 2000 Annual Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grassley, James M.; Grue, Christian E.; Major, III, Walter (University of Washington, School of Aquatic and Fishery Science, Seattle, WA)

    2002-01-01

    Avian predation of fish is suspected to contribute to the loss of juvenile spring chinook salmon in the Yakima Basin, potentially constraining natural production. In 1997 and 1998, the Yakama/Klickitat Fisheries Project (YKFP) and the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW)--whose goal is to increase natural production historically present within the Yakima River--initiated investigations to assess the feasibility of developing an index to avian predation of juvenile salmon within the river. This research--conducted by Dr. Steve Mathews and David Phinney of the University of Washington--confirmed that Ring-billed Gulls and Common Mergansers were the primary avian predators of juvenile salmon, and that under certain conditions could impact migrating smolt populations. Beginning in 1999, the Washington Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit (WACFWRU) was asked by the YKFP and the WDFW to continue development of avian consumption indices. Monitoring methods developed by Phinney et al. (1998) were adopted (with modifications) and monitoring of impacts to juvenile salmon along river reaches and at areas of high predator/prey concentrations (colloquially referred to as ''hotspots'') continued through 2000. In 2000, piscivorous birds were counted from river banks at hotspots and from a raft or drift boat along river reaches. Consumption by gulls at Hotspots was based on direct observations of foraging success and modeled abundance; consumption by all other piscivorous birds was estimated using published dietary requirements and modeled abundance. Further development of the avian consumption index model provided an estimation of smolt consumption for the 2000 survey season. Seasonal patterns of avian piscivore abundance were identified, diurnal patterns of gull abundance at hotspots were identified, predation indices were calculated for hotspots and spring and summer river reaches, and the efficacy of aerial surveys for estimating bird

  4. Swimming in air-breathing fishes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lefevre, S; Domenici, P; McKenzie, D J

    2014-03-01

    Fishes with bimodal respiration differ in the extent of their reliance on air breathing to support aerobic metabolism, which is reflected in their lifestyles and ecologies. Many freshwater species undertake seasonal and reproductive migrations that presumably involve sustained aerobic exercise. In the six species studied to date, aerobic exercise in swim flumes stimulated air-breathing behaviour, and there is evidence that surfacing frequency and oxygen uptake from air show an exponential increase with increasing swimming speed. In some species, this was associated with an increase in the proportion of aerobic metabolism met by aerial respiration, while in others the proportion remained relatively constant. The ecological significance of anaerobic swimming activities, such as sprinting and fast-start manoeuvres during predator-prey interactions, has been little studied in air-breathing fishes. Some species practise air breathing during recovery itself, while others prefer to increase aquatic respiration, possibly to promote branchial ion exchange to restore acid-base balance, and to remain quiescent and avoid being visible to predators. Overall, the diversity of air-breathing fishes is reflected in their swimming physiology as well, and further research is needed to increase the understanding of the differences and the mechanisms through which air breathing is controlled and used during exercise. © 2014 The Fisheries Society of the British Isles.

  5. Dynamics of a intraguild predation model with generalist or specialist predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Yun; Wedekin, Lauren

    2013-11-01

    Intraguild predation (IGP) is a combination of competition and predation which is the most basic system in food webs that contains three species where two species that are involved in a predator/prey relationship are also competing for a shared resource or prey. We formulate two intraguild predation (IGP: resource, IG prey and IG predator) models: one has generalist predator while the other one has specialist predator. Both models have Holling-Type I functional response between resource-IG prey and resource-IG predator; Holling-Type III functional response between IG prey and IG predator. We provide sufficient conditions of the persistence and extinction of all possible scenarios for these two models, which give us a complete picture on their global dynamics. In addition, we show that both IGP models can have multiple interior equilibria under certain parameters range. These analytical results indicate that IGP model with generalist predator has "top down" regulation by comparing to IGP model with specialist predator. Our analysis and numerical simulations suggest that: (1) Both IGP models can have multiple attractors with complicated dynamical patterns; (2) Only IGP model with specialist predator can have both boundary attractor and interior attractor, i.e., whether the system has the extinction of one species or the coexistence of three species depending on initial conditions; (3) IGP model with generalist predator is prone to have coexistence of three species.

  6. Behavioral Ecology of Coral Reef Fishes at Spawning Aggregation Sites

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Sancho, Gorka

    1998-01-01

    This thesis is an extensive investigation of the behavioral and ecological relationships between spawning reef fishes, their predators, and various environmental parameters at spawning aggregation sites...

  7. Dioxins and dioxin-like PCBs in fish in general and in particular from Baltic Sea

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Karl, H. [Federal Research Centre for Nutrition and Food, Hamburg (Germany); Ruoff, U. [Federal Research Centre For Nutrition and Food, Kiel (Germany)

    2004-09-15

    Commission Regulation No 466/2001 establishes maximum levels for dioxins in foodstuffs, foreseeing to review the maximum levels by 31 December 2006 and to include dioxin-like PCBs in the levels to be set. Fish is known to accumulate dioxins and dioxin related compounds in the lipid phase of their tissue. To collect information of the actual contamination levels in fish species on the German market, samples were taken from fishing grounds important for the supply and in particular from the Baltic Sea. Sampling concentrates on fish species with higher fat content like mackerel (Scomber scombrus), salmon (Salmo salar), trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss), red fish (Sebastes sp.) and herring (Clupea harengus), because lean fish species are known to be less contaminated. Herring is the most important fat fish species for the German fish processing industry with a market share of 19% in 2001. The annual demand is approximately 149.000 t. Herring and other fish species accumulate PCDD/Fs with increasing age and dioxin levels in the edible part of eastern Baltic herring exceeds the maximum limit of 4 ng WHOPCDD/ F-TEQ/kg wet weight (w.w.) at ages of 4 - 6 years, corresponding to sizes of approximately 17 - 18 cm and a weight of 40 g, respectively. Hence Isosaari recommended to use preferably young fish from this area for human consumption. However, the German herring industry is based on the processing of large herring with a minimum weight of > 85g up to 250g. Therefore our interest focused on herring sizes of potential interest for the German processing industry. Samples were collected in September 1999 within two weeks covering an area from the Skagerrak to the Coast of Latvia. Additionally the contamination levels in sprat (Sprattus sprattus), flounder, brown trout (Salmo trutta) and in spring spawning herring from commercial landings around the area of Ruegen have been analysed.

  8. An experimental study of Aurelia aurita feeding behaviour: Inference of the potential predation impact on a temperate estuarine nursery area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Rita; Teodósio, Maria Alexandra; Garrido, Susana

    2014-06-01

    Temperate estuaries are nursery areas for economically important fisheries resources. The common jellyfish Aurelia aurita is a resident species in many of these areas, where it can reach high abundances. This work aimed to determine the potential for predation of A. aurita on zooplanktonic organisms and early life stages of fishes, measuring feeding rates at concentrations that mimic those occurring for zooplankton, fish eggs and larvae in an estuarine nursery area. A set of experiments was aimed at determining the feeding selectivity of jellyfish when offered a mixture of fish eggs and larvae and wild plankton. Clearance rates varied markedly with prey availability and concentrations. When given mixtures of different prey types, jellyfish preferentially elected some taxa (copepods and fish eggs). Data obtained in the laboratory experiments were used to infer the potential impact of jellyfish predation upon zooplankton and ichthyoplankton in the Guadiana estuary (Southern Iberia). Repeated sampling of zooplankton, fish eggs and medusae was undertaken during the summer season of 2011. Abundance determinations were combined with experimentally estimated clearance rates of individual medusa to infer the potential jellyfish-induced mortality on prey in the area. In June and early August jellyfish-induced mortality rates were very high, and half-life times (t1/2) were consequently short for the zooplankton and ichthyoplankton. Although the potentially overestimation of our feeding rates typical of confined laboratory experiments, the results show high ingestion and clearance rates at high temperatures, typical from summer condition, and results also suggest that either by predation on early life stages of fish, or by competition for food resources, jellyfish may have a significant impact on estuarine communities and its nursery function.

  9. Changing tides: ecological and historical perspectives on fish cognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patton, B Wren; Braithwaite, Victoria A

    2015-01-01

    The capacity for specialization and radiation make fish an excellent group in which to investigate the depth and variety of animal cognition. Even though early observations of fish using tools predates the discovery of tool use in chimpanzees, fish cognition has historically been somewhat overlooked. However, a recent surge of interest is now providing a wealth of material on which to draw examples, and this has required a selective approach to choosing the research described below. Our goal is to illustrate the necessity for basing cognitive investigations on the ecological and evolutionary context of the species at hand. We also seek to illustrate the importance of ecology and the environment in honing a range of sensory systems that allow fish to glean information and support informed decision-making. The various environments and challenges with which fish interact require equally varied cognitive skills, and the solutions that fish have developed are truly impressive. Similarly, we illustrate how common ecological problems will frequently produce common cognitive solutions. Below, we focus on four topics: spatial learning and memory, avoiding predators and catching prey, communication, and innovation. These are used to illustrate how both simple and sophisticated cognitive processes underpin much of the adaptive behavioral flexibility exhibited throughout fish phylogeny. Never before has the field had such a wide array of interdisciplinary techniques available to access both cognitive and mechanistic processes underpinning fish behavior. This capacity comes at a critical time to predict and manage fish populations in an era of unprecedented global change. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  10. Maternal experience with predation risk influences genome-wide embryonic gene expression in threespined sticklebacks (Gasterosteus aculeatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mommer, Brett C; Bell, Alison M

    2014-01-01

    There is growing evidence for nongenetic effects of maternal experience on offspring. For example, previous studies have shown that female threespined stickleback fish (Gasterosteus aculeatus) exposed to predation risk produce offspring with altered behavior, metabolism and stress physiology. Here, we investigate the effect of maternal exposure to predation risk on the embryonic transcriptome in sticklebacks. Using RNA-sequencing we compared genome-wide transcription in three day post-fertilization embryos of predator-exposed and control mothers. There were hundreds of differentially expressed transcripts between embryos of predator-exposed mothers and embryos of control mothers including several non-coding RNAs. Gene Ontology analysis revealed biological pathways involved in metabolism, epigenetic inheritance, and neural proliferation and differentiation that differed between treatments. Interestingly, predation risk is associated with an accelerated life history in many vertebrates, and several of the genes and biological pathways that were identified in this study suggest that maternal exposure to predation risk accelerates the timing of embryonic development. Consistent with this hypothesis, embryos of predator-exposed mothers were larger than embryos of control mothers. These findings point to some of the molecular mechanisms that might underlie maternal effects.

  11. Maternal experience with predation risk influences genome-wide embryonic gene expression in threespined sticklebacks (Gasterosteus aculeatus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brett C Mommer

    Full Text Available There is growing evidence for nongenetic effects of maternal experience on offspring. For example, previous studies have shown that female threespined stickleback fish (Gasterosteus aculeatus exposed to predation risk produce offspring with altered behavior, metabolism and stress physiology. Here, we investigate the effect of maternal exposure to predation risk on the embryonic transcriptome in sticklebacks. Using RNA-sequencing we compared genome-wide transcription in three day post-fertilization embryos of predator-exposed and control mothers. There were hundreds of differentially expressed transcripts between embryos of predator-exposed mothers and embryos of control mothers including several non-coding RNAs. Gene Ontology analysis revealed biological pathways involved in metabolism, epigenetic inheritance, and neural proliferation and differentiation that differed between treatments. Interestingly, predation risk is associated with an accelerated life history in many vertebrates, and several of the genes and biological pathways that were identified in this study suggest that maternal exposure to predation risk accelerates the timing of embryonic development. Consistent with this hypothesis, embryos of predator-exposed mothers were larger than embryos of control mothers. These findings point to some of the molecular mechanisms that might underlie maternal effects.

  12. A Generalist Protist Predator Enables Coexistence in Multitrophic Predator-Prey Systems Containing a Phage and the Bacterial Predator Bdellovibrio

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julia Johnke

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Complex ecosystems harbor multiple predators and prey species whose direct and indirect interactions are under study. In particular, the combined effects of predator diversity and resource preference on prey removal are not known. To understand the effect of interspecies interactions, combinations of micro-predators—i.e., protists (generalists, predatory bacteria (semi-specialists, and phages (specialists—and bacterial prey were tracked over a 72-h period in miniature membrane bioreactors. While specialist predators alone drove their preferred prey to extinction, the inclusion of a generalist resulted in uniform losses among prey species. Most importantly, presence of a generalist predator enabled coexistence of all predators and prey. As the generalist predator also negatively affected the other predators, we suggest that resource partitioning between predators and the constant availability of resources for bacterial growth due to protist predation stabilizes the system and keeps its diversity high. The appearance of resistant prey strains and subsequent evolution of specialist predators unable to infect the ancestral prey implies that multitrophic communities are able to persist and stabilize themselves. Interestingly, the appearance of BALOs and phages unable to infect their prey was only observed for the BALO or phage in the absence of additional predators or prey species indicating that competition between predators might influence coevolutionary dynamics.

  13. Trophic structure of a coastal fish community determined with diet and stable isotope analyses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malek, A J; Collie, J S; Taylor, D L

    2016-09-01

    A combination of dietary guild analysis and nitrogen (δ(15) N) and carbon (δ(13) C) stable-isotope analysis was used to assess the trophic structure of the fish community in Rhode Island and Block Island Sounds, an area off southern New England identified for offshore wind energy development. In the autumn of 2009, 2010 and 2011, stomach and tissue samples were taken from 20 fish and invertebrate species for analysis of diet composition and δ(15) N and δ(13) C signatures. The food chain in Rhode Island and Block Island Sounds comprises approximately four trophic levels within which the fish community is divided into distinct dietary guilds, including planktivores, benthivores, crustacivores and piscivores. Within these guilds, inter-species isotopic and dietary overlap is high, suggesting that resource partitioning or competitive interactions play a major role in structuring the fish community. Carbon isotopes indicate that most fishes are supported by pelagic phytoplankton, although there is evidence that benthic production also plays a role, particularly for obligate benthivores such as skates Leucoraja spp. This type of analysis is useful for developing an ecosystem-based approach to management, as it identifies species that act as direct links to basal resources as well as species groups that share trophic roles. © 2016 The Fisheries Society of the British Isles.

  14. Top predators induce the evolutionary diversification of intermediate predator species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zu, Jian; Yuan, Bo; Du, Jianqiang

    2015-12-21

    We analyze the evolutionary branching phenomenon of intermediate predator species in a tritrophic food chain model by using adaptive dynamics theory. Specifically, we consider the adaptive diversification of an intermediate predator species that feeds on a prey species and is fed upon by a top predator species. We assume that the intermediate predator׳s ability to forage on the prey can adaptively improve, but this comes at the cost of decreased defense ability against the top predator. First, we identify the general properties of trade-off relationships that lead to a continuously stable strategy or to evolutionary branching in the intermediate predator species. We find that if there is an accelerating cost near the singular strategy, then that strategy is continuously stable. In contrast, if there is a mildly decelerating cost near the singular strategy, then that strategy may be an evolutionary branching point. Second, we find that after branching has occurred, depending on the specific shape and strength of the trade-off relationship, the intermediate predator species may reach an evolutionarily stable dimorphism or one of the two resultant predator lineages goes extinct. Crown Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Temporal and spatial variation of fish assemblages in Dianshan Lake, Shanghai, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Zhongjun; Wang, Siqing; Wu, Hao; Chen, Qingjiang; Ruan, Renliang; Chen, Liqiao; Liu, Qigen

    2014-07-01

    Using multi-mesh gillnets and trawls, the fish communities in Dianshan Lake at 6 stations from Oct. 2009 to Jul. 2010 were investigated seasonally to reveal the biodiversity and its spatial and temporal distribution patterns. The long-term changes in their structural characteristics were then analyzed to identify the main influencing factors and several measures for lake restoration were put forward. Thirty six species, belonging to 9 family and 30 genera, were collected, amongst which, the order Cypriniformes accounted for 61.1% of the total species number. In terms of importance value, Cypriniformes was the predominant group, Coilia nasus the dominant species, while Cyprinus carpio and Rhinogobius giurinus were the subdominant taxa. The community types did not differ among stations, but between seasons. There were no significant differences between seasons and among stations in species diversity, but richness differed both spatially and seasonally. Along with the process of eutrophication and the drastic reduction of the area colonized by macrophytes from 1959 to 2009-2010, the fish diversity declined markedly, and species numbers of herbivores and piscivores declined proportionately more than those of invertivores, omnivores, and planktivores. The decline of potamophilus and river-lake migratory fish was more marked than those of sedentary, river-sea migratory, and estuarine fishes. Eutrophication concomitant with sharp reduction of macrophyte area and overfishing may be the main reasons for the decline in fish diversity in Dianshan Lake.

  16. African penguins as predators and prey — coping (or not) with change

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This has led to both the extinction and formation of colonies. Food now may limit colonies at relatively small sizes, a fact attributable to industrial fisheries reducing the densities of forage fish. African penguins share their habitat with several other predators, with which they compete for food and breeding space. One of these ...

  17. Development of an Index to Bird Predation of Juvenile Salmonids within the Yakima River, 2001 Annual Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Major, III, Walter; Grue, Christian E.; Ryding, Kristen E. (University of Washington, School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences, Seattle, WA)

    2002-08-01

    Avian predation of fish is suspected to contribute to the loss of out-migrating juvenile salmonids in the Yakima Basin, potentially constraining natural and artificial production. In 1997 and 1998, the Yakima/ Klickitat Fisheries Project (YKFP)--whose goal is increasing natural production within the Yakima River--initiated investigations to assess the feasibility of developing an index to avian predation of juvenile salmon within the river. This research confirmed that Ring-billed Gulls and Common Mergansers were the primary avian predators of juvenile salmon (Phinney et al. 1998), and that under certain conditions could significantly impact migrating smolt populations. Beginning in 1999, the Washington Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit (WACFWRU) was asked by the YKFP to continue development of avian consumption indices. Monitoring methods developed by Phinney et al. (1998) were adopted (with modifications) and monitoring of impacts to juvenile salmon along river reaches and at areas of high predator/prey concentrations (colloquially referred to as ''hotspots'') has continued each year through 2001. In 2001, piscivorous birds were counted from river banks at hotspots and from a raft or drift boat along river reaches. Consumption by gulls at hotspots was based on direct observations of foraging success and modeled abundance; consumption by all other piscivorous birds was estimated using published dietary requirements and modeled abundance. Seasonal patterns of avian piscivore abundance were identified, diurnal patterns of gull abundance at hotspots were identified, and predation indices were calculated for hotspots and river reaches (for both spring and summer). Changes in survey methods in 2001 included the addition of surveys in the ''Canyon'' reach during spring and altering the method of directly measuring gull feeding rates at hotspots. Primary avian predators in 2001 were &apos

  18. Diet compositions and trophic guild structure of the eastern Chukchi Sea demersal fish community

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitehouse, George A.; Buckley, Troy W.; Danielson, Seth L.

    2017-01-01

    Fishes are an important link in Arctic marine food webs, connecting production of lower trophic levels to apex predators. We analyzed 1773 stomach samples from 39 fish species collected during a bottom trawl survey of the eastern Chukchi Sea in the summer of 2012. We used hierarchical cluster analysis of diet dissimilarities on 21 of the most well sampled species to identify four distinct trophic guilds: gammarid amphipod consumers, benthic invertebrate generalists, fish and shrimp consumers, and zooplankton consumers. The trophic guilds reflect dominant prey types in predator diets. We used constrained analysis of principal coordinates (CAP) to determine if variation within the composite guild diets could be explained by a suite of non-diet variables. All CAP models explained a significant proportion of the variance in the diet matrices, ranging from 7% to 25% of the total variation. Explanatory variables tested included latitude, longitude, predator length, depth, and water mass. These results indicate a trophic guild structure is present amongst the demersal fish community during summer in the eastern Chukchi Sea. Regular monitoring of the food habits of the demersal fish community will be required to improve our understanding of the spatial, temporal, and interannual variation in diet composition, and to improve our ability to identify and predict the impacts of climate change and commercial development on the structure and functioning of the Chukchi Sea ecosystem.

  19. Identification of a novel uromodulin-like gene related to predator-induced bulgy morph in anuran tadpoles by functional microarray analysis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tsukasa Mori

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Tadpoles of the anuran species Rana pirica can undergo predator-specific morphological responses. Exposure to a predation threat by larvae of the salamander Hynobius retardatus results in formation of a bulgy body (bulgy morph with a higher tail. The tadpoles revert to a normal phenotype upon removal of the larval salamander threat. Although predator-induced phenotypic plasticity is of major interest to evolutionary ecologists, the molecular and physiological mechanisms that control this response have yet to be elucidated. In a previous study, we identified various genes that are expressed in the skin of the bulgy morph. However, it proved difficult to determine which of these were key genes in the control of gene expression associated with the bulgy phenotype. Here, we show that a novel gene plays an important role in the phenotypic plasticity producing the bulgy morph. A functional microarray analysis using facial tissue samples of control and bulgy morph tadpoles identified candidate functional genes for predator-specific morphological responses. A larger functional microarray was prepared than in the previous study and used to analyze mRNAs extracted from facial and brain tissues of tadpoles from induction-reversion experiments. We found that a novel uromodulin-like gene, which we name here pirica, was up-regulated and that keratin genes were down-regulated as the period of exposure to larval salamanders increased. Pirica consists of a 1296 bp open reading frame, which is putatively translated into a protein of 432 amino acids. The protein contains a zona pellucida domain similar to that of proteins that function to control water permeability. We found that the gene was expressed in the superficial epidermis of the tadpole skin.

  20. What cues do ungulates use to assess predation risk in dense temperate forests?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kuijper, Dries P.J.; Verwijmeren, Mart; Churski, Marcin; Zbyryt, Adam; Schmidt, Krzysztof; Jędrzejewska, Bogumiła; Smit, Chris

    2014-01-01

    Anti-predator responses by ungulates can be based on habitat features or on the near-imminent threat of predators. In dense forest, cues that ungulates use to assess predation risk likely differ from half-open landscapes, as scent relative to sight is predicted to be more important. We studied, in

  1. Modelling an exploited marine fish community with 15 parameters - results from a simple size-based model

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pope, J.G.; Rice, J.C.; Daan, N.; Jennings, S.; Gislason, H.

    2006-01-01

    To measure and predict the response of fish communities to exploitation, it is necessary to understand how the direct and indirect effects of fishing interact. Because fishing and predation are size-selective processes, the potential response can be explored with size-based models. We use a

  2. Does small mammal prey guild affect the exposure of predators to anticoagulant rodenticides?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tosh, D.G.; McDonald, R.A.; Bearhop, S.; Lllewellyn, N.R.; Fee, S.; Sharp, E.A.; Barnett, E.A.; Shore, R.F.

    2011-01-01

    Ireland has a restricted small mammal prey guild but still includes species most likely to consume anticoagulant rodenticide (AR) baits. This may enhance secondary exposure of predators to ARs. We compared liver AR residues in foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in Northern Ireland (NI) with those in foxes from Great Britain which has a more diverse prey guild but similar agricultural use of ARs. Liver ARs were detected in 84% of NI foxes, more than in a comparable sample of foxes from Scotland and similar to that of suspected AR poisoned animals from England and Wales. High exposure in NI foxes is probably due to greater predation of commensal rodents and non-target species most likely to take AR baits, and may also partly reflect greater exposure to highly persistent brodifacoum and flocoumafen. High exposure is likely to enhance risk and Ireland may be a sentinel for potential effects on predator populations. - Highlights: → Exposure of a predator to anticoagulant rodenticides was compared in Britain and Ireland. → Exposure was higher in Ireland. → Differences driven by small mammal prey guilds. → Ireland a potential sentinel for predator exposure to anticoagulants. - Restriction of the small mammal prey guild is associated with enhanced exposure of predators to anticoagulant rodenticides.

  3. Nest Predation Deviates from Nest Predator Abundance in an Ecologically Trapped Bird.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hollander, Franck A; Van Dyck, Hans; San Martin, Gilles; Titeux, Nicolas

    2015-01-01

    In human-modified environments, ecological traps may result from a preference for low-quality habitat where survival or reproductive success is lower than in high-quality habitat. It has often been shown that low reproductive success for birds in preferred habitat types was due to higher nest predator abundance. However, between-habitat differences in nest predation may only weakly correlate with differences in nest predator abundance. An ecological trap is at work in a farmland bird (Lanius collurio) that recently expanded its breeding habitat into open areas in plantation forests. This passerine bird shows a strong preference for forest habitat, but it has a higher nest success in farmland. We tested whether higher abundance of nest predators in the preferred habitat or, alternatively, a decoupling of nest predator abundance and nest predation explained this observed pattern of maladaptive habitat selection. More than 90% of brood failures were attributed to nest predation. Nest predator abundance was more than 50% higher in farmland, but nest predation was 17% higher in forest. Differences between nest predation on actual shrike nests and on artificial nests suggested that parent shrikes may facilitate nest disclosure for predators in forest more than they do in farmland. The level of caution by parent shrikes when visiting their nest during a simulated nest predator intrusion was the same in the two habitats, but nest concealment was considerably lower in forest, which contributes to explaining the higher nest predation in this habitat. We conclude that a decoupling of nest predator abundance and nest predation may create ecological traps in human-modified environments.

  4. Reduced flocking by birds on islands with relaxed predation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beauchamp, Guy

    2004-05-22

    Adaptive hypotheses for the evolution of flocking in birds have usually focused on predation avoidance or foraging enhancement. It still remains unclear to what extent each factor has contributed to the evolution of flocking. If predation avoidance were the sole factor involved, flocking should not be prevalent when predation is relaxed. I examined flocking tendencies along with mean and maximum flock size in species living on islands where predation risk is either absent or negligible and then compared these results with matched counterparts on the mainland. The dataset consisted of 46 pairs of species from 22 different islands across the world. The tendency to flock was retained on islands in most species, but in pairs with dissimilar flocking tendencies, island species were less likely to flock. Mean and maximum flock size were smaller on islands than on the mainland. Potential confounding factors such as population density, nest predation, habitat type, food type and body mass failed to account for the results. The results suggest that predation is a significant factor in the evolution of flocking in birds. Nevertheless, predation and other factors, such as foraging enhancement, probably act together to maintain the trait in most species.

  5. Development of a Natural Rearing System to Improve Supplemental Fish Quality, 1999-2003 Progress Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Maynard, Desmond J.

    2003-02-25

    The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) has been conducting Natural Rearing Enhancement System (NATURES) research since the early 1990s. NATURES studies have looked at a variety of mechanisms to enhance production of wild-like salmonids from hatcheries. The goal of NATURES research is to develop fish culture techniques that enable hatcheries to produce salmon with more wild-like characteristics and increased postrelease survival. The development of such techniques is called for in the Columbia Basin Fish and Wildlife Program. This document is the draft report for the Supplemental Fish Quality Contract DE-AI79-91BP20651 Over the history of the project, the effects of seminatural raceway habitats, automated underwater feeders, exercise current velocities, live food diets, and predator avoidance training have been investigated. The findings of these studies are reported in an earlier contract report (Maynard et al. 1996a). The current report focuses on research that has been conducted between 1999 and 2002. This includes studies on the effect of exercise on salmon and steelhead trout, effects of predator avoid training, integration of NATUES protocols into production hatcheries, and the study of social behavior of steelhead grown in enriched and conventional environments. Traditionally, salmon (Oncorhynchus spp.) are reared in barren concrete raceways that lack natural substrate, in-stream structure, or overhead cover. The fish are fed in an unnatural manner with artificial feeds mechanically or hand broadcast across the water surface. This traditional approach has increased the egg-to-smolt survival of hatchery-reared fish by an order of magnitude over that experienced by wild-reared salmon. However, once hatchery-reared fish are released into the wild their smolt-to-adult survival is usually much lower than wild-reared salmon. The reduced postrelease survival of hatchery-reared fish may stem from differences in their behavior and morphology compared to wild

  6. Colonial waterbird predation on Lost River and Shortnose suckers in the Upper Klamath Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, Allen F.; Hewitt, David A.; Payton, Quinn; Cramer, Bradley M.; Collis, Ken; Roby, Daniel D.

    2016-01-01

    We evaluated predation on Lost River Suckers Deltistes luxatus and Shortnose Suckers Chasmistes brevirostris by American white pelicans Pelecanus erythrorhynchos and double-crested cormorants Phalacrocorax auritus nesting at mixed-species colonies in the Upper Klamath Basin of Oregon and California during 2009–2014. Predation was evaluated by recovering (detecting) PIT tags from tagged fish on bird colonies and calculating minimum predation rates, as the percentage of available suckers consumed, adjusted for PIT tag detection probabilities but not deposition probabilities (i.e., probability an egested tag was deposited on- or off-colony). Results indicate that impacts of avian predation varied by sucker species, age-class (adult, juvenile), bird colony location, and year, demonstrating dynamic predator–prey interactions. Tagged suckers ranging in size from 72 to 730 mm were susceptible to cormorant or pelican predation; all but the largest Lost River Suckers were susceptible to bird predation. Minimum predation rate estimates ranged annually from <0.1% to 4.6% of the available PIT-tagged Lost River Suckers and from <0.1% to 4.2% of the available Shortnose Suckers, and predation rates were consistently higher on suckers in Clear Lake Reservoir, California, than on suckers in Upper Klamath Lake, Oregon. There was evidence that bird predation on juvenile suckers (species unknown) in Upper Klamath Lake was higher than on adult suckers in Upper Klamath Lake, where minimum predation rates ranged annually from 5.7% to 8.4% of available juveniles. Results suggest that avian predation is a factor limiting the recovery of populations of Lost River and Shortnose suckers, particularly juvenile suckers in Upper Klamath Lake and adult suckers in Clear Lake Reservoir. Additional research is needed to measure predator-specific PIT tag deposition probabilities (which, based on other published studies, could increase predation rates presented herein by a factor of roughly 2

  7. Community shelter use in response to two benthic decapod predators in the Long Island Sound

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David M. Hudson

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available To investigate community shelter effects of two invasive decapod species, Hemigrapsus sanguineus and Carcinus maenas, in the Long Island Sound (LIS, we deployed artificial shelters in the intertidal and immediate subtidal zones. These consisted of five groups during the summer: a control, a resident H. sanguineus male or female group, and a resident C. maenas male or female group. We quantified utilization of the shelters at 24 h by counting crabs and fish present. We found significant avoidance of H. sanguineus in the field by benthic hermit crabs (Pagurus spp. and significant avoidance of C. maenas by the seaboard goby (Gobiosoma ginsburgi. The grubby (Myoxocephalus aenaeus avoided neither treatment, probably since it tends to be a predator of invertebrates. H. sanguineus avoided C. maenas treatments, whereas C. maenas did not avoid any treatment. Seasonal deployments in the subtidal indicated cohabitation of a number of benthic species in the LIS, with peak shelter use corresponding with increased predation and likely reproductive activity in spring and summer for green crabs (C. maenas, hermit crabs (Pagurus spp., seaboard gobies (G. ginsburgi, and grubbies (Myoxocephalus aenaeus.

  8. Effect of planktivores, zooplankton, and macrobenthos on material flow in a small lake

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Starkel, W.M.

    1985-01-01

    Planktivores, zooplankton grazers, and macrobenthos were studied to determine how changes in animal community structure may alter the flow of material in Dunham Pond, CT. Chaoborus and chironomid larvae were studied to determine how they affect the flux of matter across the sediment/water interface. This was done by incubating undisturbed cores in situ and relating changes in water chemistry to larval density. The log-transformed flux rates of iron, manganese, and phosphorus were linearly related to larval biomass. Functional groups may be successfully used to predict rates of material flow. Changes in the mass of macroinvertebrates affect the flux rates of redox-active substances across the sediment/water interface. The use of population densities and feeding characteristics to estimate trophic transfer in Dunham Pond indicate that (1) visual planktivory by larval perch may result in overutilization of prey, (2) ambush planktivory by univoltine Chaoborus appears to under utilize prey, and (3) zooplankton grazing tracks net primary productivity, regardless of zooplankton community structure. Animal groups cycle 30-100% of the phosphorus required for 14 C productivity in Dunham Pond

  9. Nest Predation Deviates from Nest Predator Abundance in an Ecologically Trapped Bird.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Franck A Hollander

    Full Text Available In human-modified environments, ecological traps may result from a preference for low-quality habitat where survival or reproductive success is lower than in high-quality habitat. It has often been shown that low reproductive success for birds in preferred habitat types was due to higher nest predator abundance. However, between-habitat differences in nest predation may only weakly correlate with differences in nest predator abundance. An ecological trap is at work in a farmland bird (Lanius collurio that recently expanded its breeding habitat into open areas in plantation forests. This passerine bird shows a strong preference for forest habitat, but it has a higher nest success in farmland. We tested whether higher abundance of nest predators in the preferred habitat or, alternatively, a decoupling of nest predator abundance and nest predation explained this observed pattern of maladaptive habitat selection. More than 90% of brood failures were attributed to nest predation. Nest predator abundance was more than 50% higher in farmland, but nest predation was 17% higher in forest. Differences between nest predation on actual shrike nests and on artificial nests suggested that parent shrikes may facilitate nest disclosure for predators in forest more than they do in farmland. The level of caution by parent shrikes when visiting their nest during a simulated nest predator intrusion was the same in the two habitats, but nest concealment was considerably lower in forest, which contributes to explaining the higher nest predation in this habitat. We conclude that a decoupling of nest predator abundance and nest predation may create ecological traps in human-modified environments.

  10. Instream cover and shade mediate avian predation on trout in semi-natural streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brooke E. Penaluna; David L. G. Noakes

    2015-01-01

    Piscivory by birds can be important, particularly on fish in small streams and during seasonal low flows when available cover from predators can be limited. We conducted an experiment at the Oregon Hatchery Research Center to evaluate size-selective survival of Coastal Cutthroat Trout (Figure 8; Oncorhynchus clarkii clarkii) in replicated semi-...

  11. Trophic ontogeny of fluvial Bull Trout and seasonal predation on Pacific Salmon in a riverine food web

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lowery, Erin D.; Beauchamp, David A.

    2015-01-01

    Bull Trout Salvelinus confluentus are typically top predators in their host ecosystems. The Skagit River in northwestern Washington State contains Bull Trout and Chinook Salmon Oncorhynchus tshawytschapopulations that are among the largest in the Puget Sound region and also contains a regionally large population of steelhead O. mykiss (anadromous Rainbow Trout). All three species are listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Our objective was to determine the trophic ecology of Bull Trout, especially their role as predators and consumers in the riverine food web. We seasonally sampled distribution, diets, and growth of Bull Trout in main-stem and tributary habitats during 2007 and winter–spring 2008. Consumption rates were estimated with a bioenergetics model to (1) determine the annual and seasonal contributions of different prey types to Bull Trout energy budgets and (2) estimate the potential impacts of Bull Trout predation on juvenile Pacific salmon populations. Salmon carcasses and eggs contributed approximately 50% of the annual energy budget for large Bull Trout in main-stem habitats, whereas those prey types were largely inaccessible to smaller Bull Trout in tributary habitats. The remaining 50% of the energy budget was acquired by eating juvenile salmon, resident fishes, and immature aquatic insects. Predation on listed Chinook Salmon and steelhead/Rainbow Trout was highest during winter and spring (January–June). Predation on juvenile salmon differed between the two study years, likely due to the dominant odd-year spawning cycle for Pink Salmon O. gorbuscha. The population impact on ocean- and stream-type Chinook Salmon was negligible, whereas the impact on steelhead/Rainbow Trout was potentially very high. Due to the ESA-listed status of Bull Trout, steelhead, and Chinook Salmon, the complex trophic interactions in this drainage provide both challenges and opportunities for creative adaptive management strategies.

  12. Development of the acoustically evoked behavioral response in larval plainfin midshipman fish, Porichthys notatus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter W Alderks

    Full Text Available The ontogeny of hearing in fishes has become a major interest among bioacoustics researchers studying fish behavior and sensory ecology. Most fish begin to detect acoustic stimuli during the larval stage which can be important for navigation, predator avoidance and settlement, however relatively little is known about the hearing capabilities of larval fishes. We characterized the acoustically evoked behavioral response (AEBR in the plainfin midshipman fish, Porichthys notatus, and used this innate startle-like response to characterize this species' auditory capability during larval development. Age and size of larval midshipman were highly correlated (r(2 = 0.92. The AEBR was first observed in larvae at 1.4 cm TL. At a size ≥ 1.8 cm TL, all larvae responded to a broadband stimulus of 154 dB re1 µPa or -15.2 dB re 1 g (z-axis. Lowest AEBR thresholds were 140-150 dB re 1 µPa or -33 to -23 dB re 1 g for frequencies below 225 Hz. Larval fish with size ranges of 1.9-2.4 cm TL had significantly lower best evoked frequencies than the other tested size groups. We also investigated the development of the lateral line organ and its function in mediating the AEBR. The lateral line organ is likely involved in mediating the AEBR but not necessary to evoke the startle-like response. The midshipman auditory and lateral line systems are functional during early development when the larvae are in the nest and the auditory system appears to have similar tuning characteristics throughout all life history stages.

  13. Development of the acoustically evoked behavioral response in larval plainfin midshipman fish, Porichthys notatus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alderks, Peter W; Sisneros, Joseph A

    2013-01-01

    The ontogeny of hearing in fishes has become a major interest among bioacoustics researchers studying fish behavior and sensory ecology. Most fish begin to detect acoustic stimuli during the larval stage which can be important for navigation, predator avoidance and settlement, however relatively little is known about the hearing capabilities of larval fishes. We characterized the acoustically evoked behavioral response (AEBR) in the plainfin midshipman fish, Porichthys notatus, and used this innate startle-like response to characterize this species' auditory capability during larval development. Age and size of larval midshipman were highly correlated (r(2) = 0.92). The AEBR was first observed in larvae at 1.4 cm TL. At a size ≥ 1.8 cm TL, all larvae responded to a broadband stimulus of 154 dB re1 µPa or -15.2 dB re 1 g (z-axis). Lowest AEBR thresholds were 140-150 dB re 1 µPa or -33 to -23 dB re 1 g for frequencies below 225 Hz. Larval fish with size ranges of 1.9-2.4 cm TL had significantly lower best evoked frequencies than the other tested size groups. We also investigated the development of the lateral line organ and its function in mediating the AEBR. The lateral line organ is likely involved in mediating the AEBR but not necessary to evoke the startle-like response. The midshipman auditory and lateral line systems are functional during early development when the larvae are in the nest and the auditory system appears to have similar tuning characteristics throughout all life history stages.

  14. Costs of colour change in fish: food intake and behavioural decisions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodgers, Gwendolen M; Gladman, Nicholas W; Corless, Hannah F; Morrell, Lesley J

    2013-07-15

    Many animals, particularly reptiles, amphibians, fish and cephalopods, have the ability to change their body colour, for functions including thermoregulation, signalling and predator avoidance. Many fish plastically darken their body colouration in response to dark visual backgrounds, and this functions to reduce predation risk. Here, we tested the hypotheses that colour change in fish (1) carries with it an energetic cost and (2) affects subsequent shoal and habitat choice decisions. We demonstrate that guppies (Poecilia reticulata) change colour in response to dark and light visual backgrounds, and that doing so carries an energetic cost in terms of food consumption. By increasing food intake, however, guppies are able to maintain growth rates and meet the energetic costs of changing colour. Following colour change, fish preferentially choose habitats and shoals that match their own body colouration, and maximise crypsis, thus avoiding the need for further colour change but also potentially paying an opportunity cost associated with restriction to particular habitats and social associates. Thus, colour change to match the background is complemented by behavioural strategies, which should act to maximise fitness in variable environments.

  15. From fish to fashion: experimental and theoretical insights into the evolution of culture

    OpenAIRE

    Laland, K. N.; Atton, N.; Webster, M. M.

    2011-01-01

    Recent years have witnessed a re-evaluation of the cognitive capabilities of fishes, including with respect to social learning. Indeed, some of the best experimental evidence for animal traditions can be found in fishes. Laboratory experimental studies reveal that many fishes acquire dietary, food site and mating preferences, predator recognition and avoidance behaviour, and learn pathways, through copying1 other fishes. Concentrating on foraging behaviour, we will present the findings of lab...

  16. A review of ecological interactions between crayfish and fish, indigenous and introduced

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reynolds J.D.

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Crayfish (decapods and fish are both long-lived large members of freshwater communities, often functioning as keystone species. This paper reviews interactions between these, with emphasis on the European context. Native crayfish and fish are in ecological balance, which may involve mutual predation, competition and sometimes habitat disturbance. This balance is disrupted by range extensions and translocations of native fish or crayfish into exotic situations. Some fish and crayfish have been translocated globally, chiefly from North America to other continents. Non-indigenous crayfish species (NICS may impact on native fish, just as introduced fish impact on indigenous crayfish species (ICS. Competition between ICS and NICS may result in making the former susceptible to various mechanisms of interaction with fish, indigenous or introduced. In Europe, long-established NICS – signals, spiny-cheek and red swamp crayfish – may occur in greater densities than ICS; they are more tolerant and aggressive and show more interactions with fish. More recent introductions, still restricted in distribution, have not yet received enough study for their impacts to be assessed. Interactions between fish and crayfish in North and South America, Madagascar and Australasia are also explored. Mechanisms of interaction between fish and crayfish include mutual predation, competition for food and spatial resources, food-web alteration and habitat modification. Resultant changes in communities and ecosystems may be physical or biotal, and affect both ecosystem services and exploitation potential.

  17. The shallow-water fish assemblage of Isla del Coco National Park, Costa Rica: structure and patterns in an isolated, predator-dominated ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alan M. Friedlander

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Fishes at Isla del Coco National Park, Costa Rica, were surveyed as part of a larger scientific expedition to the area in September 2009. The average total biomass of nearshore fishes was 7.8 tonnes per ha, among the largest observed in the tropics, with apex predators such as sharks, jacks, and groupers accounting for nearly 40% of the total biomass. The abundance of reef and pelagic sharks, particularly large aggregations of threatened species such as the scalloped hammerhead shark (up to 42 hammerheads ha-1 and large schools of jacks and snappers show the capacity for high biomass in unfished ecosystems in the Eastern Tropical Pacific. However, the abundance of hammerhead and reef whitetip sharks appears to have been declining since the late 1990s, and likely causes may include increasing fishing pressure on sharks in the region and illegal fishing inside the Park. One Galapagos shark tagged on September 20, 2009 in the Isla del Coco National Park moved 255km southeast towards Malpelo Island in Colombia, when it stopped transmitting. These results contribute to the evidence that sharks conduct large-scale movements between marine protected areas (Isla del Coco, Malpelo, Galápagos in the Eastern tropical Pacific and emphasize the need for regional-scale management. More than half of the species and 90% of the individuals observed were endemic to the tropical eastern Pacific. These high biomass and endemicity values highlight the uniqueness of the fish assemblage at Isla del Coco and its importance as a global biodiversity hotspot.La biomasa promedio de peces costeros en el Parque Nacional Isla del Coco en septiembre de 2010 fue de 7,8 toneladas por hectárea, entre las más elevadas halladas jamás en zonas tropicales. Los grandes depredadores representaron el 40% de la biomasa total. La abundancia de tiburones costeros y pelágicos, particularmente las enormes agregaciones de tiburón martillo (hasta 42 individuos por hectárea y los

  18. Predation of Piaractus mesopotamicus and Oreochromis niloticus larvae by Pantala flavescens with different length classes - doi: 10.4025/actascibiolsci.v33i4.5470 Predation of Piaractus mesopotamicus and Oreochromis niloticus larvae by Pantala flavescens with different length classes - doi: 10.4025/actascibiolsci.v33i4.5470

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Eduardo Bento Fernandes

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available The experiment had as objective to study the survival of Piaractus mesopotamicus and Oreochromis niloticus larvae subject to predation by Pantala flavescens larvae with different length classes. We used 120 larvae of P. mesopotamicus, 120 of O. niloticus, and also 24 larvae of Pantala flavescens, distributed in 24 aquariums with useful volume for 2 L, being placed one Odonate for aquarium. The treatments differed as regard to the prey species and the predator size, being kept a control treatment. An aquarium (2 L containing one larvae of Odonate and 10 larvae of fish were considered an experimental unit. After the beginning, each three hours (18:00, 21:00, 0:00, 3:00, 6:00, 9:00, 12:00, 15:00 and 18:00h, the remnant larvae of fish (alive in each experimental unit was quantified, and we replaced the consumed larvae, so that we always had 10 larvae of fish at each aquarium after each counting. For both fish species, there was a slight increase in consumption by the Odonate with intermediate size, but the values did not differ statistically (p > 0.05. Larvae of Odonate in the treatments with greater length presented a lower consumption (p The experiment had as objective to study the survival of Piaractus mesopotamicus and Oreochromis niloticus larvae subject to predation by Pantala flavescens larvae with different length classes. We used 120 larvae of P. mesopotamicus, 120 of O. niloticus, and also 24 larvae of Pantala flavescens, distributed in 24 aquariums with useful volume for 2 L, being placed one Odonate for aquarium. The treatments differed as regard to the prey species and the predator size, being kept a control treatment. An aquarium (2 L containing one larvae of Odonate and 10 larvae of fish were considered an experimental unit. After the beginning, each three hours (18:00, 21:00, 0:00, 3:00, 6:00, 9:00, 12:00, 15:00 and 18:00h, the remnant larvae of fish (alive in each experimental unit was quantified, and we replaced the consumed larvae

  19. Theory and application of semiochemicals in nuisance fish control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sorensen, Peter W.; Johnson, Nicholas

    2016-01-01

    Controlling unwanted, or nuisance, fishes is becoming an increasingly urgent issue with few obvious solutions. Because fish rely heavily on semiochemicals, or chemical compounds that convey information between and within species, to mediate aspects of their life histories, these compounds are increasingly being considered as an option to help control wild fish. Possible uses of semiochemicals include measuring their presence in water to estimate population size, adding them to traps to count or remove specific species of fish, adding them to waterways to manipulate large-scale movement patterns, and saturating the environment with synthesized semiochemicals to disrupt responses to the natural cue. These applications may be especially appropriate for pheromones, chemical signals that pass between members of same species and which also have extreme specificity and potency. Alarm cues, compounds released by injured fish, and cues released by potential predators also could function as repellents and be especially useful if paired with pheromonal attractants in “push-pull” configurations. Approximately half a dozen attractive pheromones now have been partially identified in fish, and those for the sea lamprey and the common carp have been tested in the field with modest success. Alarm and predator cues for sea lamprey also have been tested in the laboratory and field with some success. Success has been hampered by our incomplete understanding of chemical identity, a lack of synthesized compounds, the fact that laboratory bioassays do not always reflect natural environments, and the relative difficulty of conducting trials on wild fishes because of short field seasons and regulatory requirements. Nevertheless, workers continue efforts to identify pheromones because of the great potential elucidated by insect control and the fact that few tools are available to control nuisance fish. Approaches developed for nuisance fish also could be applied to valued fishes, which

  20. Combined fishing and climate forcing in the southern Benguela upwelling ecosystem: an end-to-end modelling approach reveals dampened effects.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Morgane Travers-Trolet

    Full Text Available The effects of climate and fishing on marine ecosystems have usually been studied separately, but their interactions make ecosystem dynamics difficult to understand and predict. Of particular interest to management, the potential synergism or antagonism between fishing pressure and climate forcing is analysed in this paper, using an end-to-end ecosystem model of the southern Benguela ecosystem, built from coupling hydrodynamic, biogeochemical and multispecies fish models (ROMS-N2P2Z2D2-OSMOSE. Scenarios of different intensities of upwelling-favourable wind stress combined with scenarios of fishing top-predator fish were tested. Analyses of isolated drivers show that the bottom-up effect of the climate forcing propagates up the food chain whereas the top-down effect of fishing cascades down to zooplankton in unfavourable environmental conditions but dampens before it reaches phytoplankton. When considering both climate and fishing drivers together, it appears that top-down control dominates the link between top-predator fish and forage fish, whereas interactions between the lower trophic levels are dominated by bottom-up control. The forage fish functional group appears to be a central component of this ecosystem, being the meeting point of two opposite trophic controls. The set of combined scenarios shows that fishing pressure and upwelling-favourable wind stress have mostly dampened effects on fish populations, compared to predictions from the separate effects of the stressors. Dampened effects result in biomass accumulation at the top predator fish level but a depletion of biomass at the forage fish level. This should draw our attention to the evolution of this functional group, which appears as both structurally important in the trophic functioning of the ecosystem, and very sensitive to climate and fishing pressures. In particular, diagnoses considering fishing pressure only might be more optimistic than those that consider combined effects

  1. Trace elements in muscle of three fish species from Todos os Santos Bay, Bahia State, Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Santana, Carolina Oliveira; de Jesus, Taíse Bomfim; de Aguiar, William Moura; de Jesus Sant'anna Franca-Rocha, Washington; Soares, Carlos Alberto Caroso

    2017-03-01

    In this study, an analysis was performed on the concentrations of the trace elements Al, As, Ba, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Mn, Ni, Pb, V, and Zn in muscle of two carnivorous and one planktivorous fish species collected at Todos os Santos Bay (BTS). The accumulation order of the trace elements in Lutjanus analis was Al >Zn >Fe >Cr >Ba >Ni. In Cetengraulis edentulus, the order was Al >Fe >Zn >Cr >Ni >Mn >As. In the species Diapterus rhombeus, the order was Al >Fe >Zn >Cr >Ni >Mn >Cd. To determine the risk related to the consumption of fish, toxicity guidelines were used as standard references. It was observed that the species C. edentulus contained concentrations of As exceeding WHO limits, but these concentrations were acceptable according to the Agência Nacional de Vigilância Sanitária (ANVISA) guidelines. Cd levels were found only in D. rhombeus and in low concentrations according to the determinations of WHO and ANVISA. Pb levels were not detected in any of the three fish species. The analyzed elements did not differ statistically according to the species and feeding habits. The results point to possible risks of human contamination by As related to the consumption of the fish species C. edentulus from the BTS.

  2. Body size and allometric shape variation in the molly Poecilia vivipara along a gradient of salinity and predation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Araújo, Márcio S; Perez, S Ivan; Magazoni, Maria Julia C; Petry, Ana C

    2014-12-04

    Phenotypic diversity among populations may result from divergent natural selection acting directly on traits or via correlated responses to changes in other traits. One of the most frequent patterns of correlated response is the proportional change in the dimensions of anatomical traits associated with changes in growth or absolute size, known as allometry. Livebearing fishes subject to predation gradients have been shown to repeatedly evolve larger caudal peduncles and smaller cranial regions under high predation regimes. Poecilia vivipara is a livebearing fish commonly found in coastal lagoons in the north of the state of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Similar to what is observed in other predation gradients, lagoons inhabited by P. vivipara vary in the presence of piscivorous fishes; contrary to other poeciliid systems, populations of P. vivipara vary greatly in body size, which opens the possibility of strong allometric effects on shape variation. Here we investigated body shape diversification among six populations of P. vivipara along a predation gradient and its relationship with allometric trajectories within and among populations. We found substantial body size variation and correlated shape changes among populations. Multivariate regression analysis showed that size variation among populations accounted for 66% of shape variation in females and 38% in males, suggesting that size is the most important dimension underlying shape variation among populations of P. vivipara in this system. Changes in the relative sizes of the caudal peduncle and cranial regions were only partly in line with predictions from divergent natural selection associated with predation regime. Our results suggest the possibility that adaptive shape variation among populations has been partly constrained by allometry in P. vivipara. Processes governing body size changes are therefore important in the diversification of this species. We conclude that in species characterized by substantial

  3. Rhinoceros beetles suffer male-biased predation by mammalian and avian predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kojima, Wataru; Sugiura, Shinji; Makihara, Hiroshi; Ishikawa, Yukio; Takanashi, Takuma

    2014-03-01

    Male sexually-selected traits often impose an increased risk of predation on their bearers, causing male-biased predation. We investigated whether males of the sap-feeding Japanese rhinoceros beetle Trypoxylus dichotomus were more susceptible to predation than females by comparing the morphology of beetles caught in bait traps with the remains of beetles found on the ground. The males of this species are larger than the females and have a horn on the head. We found that predation pressure was greater for males than for females, and that larger individuals of both sexes were more vulnerable to predation. We identified two predators, the raccoon dog Nyctereutes procyonoides and jungle crow Corvus macrorhynchos, by monitoring sap-site trees with infrared video cameras. Raccoon dogs visited sap-site trees at night, while crows came after daybreak. The highest frequency of visits by both predators was observed in the first half of August, which matches the peak season of T. dichotomus. Raccoon dogs often left bite marks on the remains of prey, whereas crows did not. Bite marks were found on most of the remains collected at two distant localities, which suggested that predation by raccoon dogs is common. Size- and sex-dependent differences in the conspicuousness and active period of T. dichotomus probably explain these biased predation patterns. Our results suggest that having a large horn/body is costly in terms of the increased risk of predation. Predation cost may act as a stabilizing selection pressure against the further exaggeration of male sexual traits.

  4. Evaluation of the trace elements and the total mercury concentration in fishes commercialized at the Cubatao city, Sao Paulo, Brazil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fonseca, Barbara C.; Farias, Luciana A.; Curcho, Michel R.M.; Favaro, Debora I.T.; Braga, Elisabete S.

    2009-01-01

    This paper evaluates the total Hg and the trace elements As, Br, Co, Cr and Rb concentrations in muscle of commercially important fishes at the Cubatao, Sao Paulo, Brazil, region. The following carnivore species were analysed: jew fish (Micropogonias furnieri), girl leg (Menticirrhus americanus), hake (Macrodon ancylodon), and plant eaters, sardine (Sardella braziliensis) and grey mullet (Mugil liza), representing a total of 58 samples. The analysed trace elements were determined through the neutron analysis activation (NAA) and total Hg, through the atomic absorption spectrometry with cold vapor generation (CV AAS). The analysed elements present a great concentration variation, not only among individuals of the same specie, but also among all the analysed species. The total Hg concentration were highly significant, with the predator species jew fish, girl leg and hake presenting concentrations larger than the non predator species sardine and grey mullet. Nevertheless, the content of total Hg remained bellow the limits established by the Brazilian legislation which is the 500 μg kg -1 for the non predator species, and the 1000 μg -1 for the predator species (humid weight)

  5. Local and landscape drivers of predation services in urban gardens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Philpott, Stacy M; Bichier, Peter

    2017-04-01

    In agroecosystems, local and landscape features, as well as natural enemy abundance and richness, are significant predictors of predation services that may result in biological control of pests. Despite the increasing importance of urban gardening for provisioning of food to urban populations, most urban gardeners suffer from high pest problems, and have little knowledge about how to manage their plots to increase biological control services. We examined the influence of local, garden scale (i.e., herbaceous and arboreal vegetation abundance and diversity, ground cover) and landscape (i.e., landscape diversity and surrounding land use types) characteristics on predation services provided by naturally occurring predators in 19 urban gardens in the California central coast. We introduced sentinel pests (moth eggs and larvae and pea aphids) onto greenhouse-raised plants taken to gardens and assigned to open or bagged (predator exclosure) treatments. We found high predation rates with between 40% and 90% of prey items removed in open treatments. Predation services varied with local and landscape factors, but significant predictors differed by prey species. Predation of eggs and aphids increased with vegetation complexity in gardens, but larvae predation declined with vegetation complexity. Smaller gardens experienced higher predation services, likely due to increases in predator abundance in smaller gardens. Several ground cover features influenced predation services. In contrast to patterns in rural agricultural landscapes, predation on aphids declined with increases in landscape diversity. In sum, we report the relationships between several local management factors, as well as landscape surroundings, and implications for garden management. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  6. Use of number by fish.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian Agrillo

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Research on human infants, mammals, birds and fish has demonstrated that rudimentary numerical abilities pre-date the evolution of human language. Yet there is controversy as to whether animals represent numbers mentally or rather base their judgments on non-numerical perceptual variables that co-vary with numerosity. To date, mental representation of number has been convincingly documented only for a few mammals. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here we used a training procedure to investigate whether mosquitofish could learn to discriminate between two and three objects even when denied access to non-numerical information. In the first experiment, fish were trained to discriminate between two sets of geometric figures. These varied in shape, size, brightness and distance, but no control for non-numerical variables was made. Subjects were then re-tested while controlling for one non-numerical variable at a time. Total luminance of the stimuli and the sum of perimeter of figures appeared irrelevant, but performance dropped to chance level when stimuli were matched for the cumulative surface area or for the overall space occupied by the arrays, indicating that these latter cues had been spontaneously used by the fish during the learning process. In a second experiment, where the task consisted of discriminating 2 vs 3 elements with all non-numerical variables simultaneously controlled for, all subjects proved able to learn the discrimination, and interestingly they did not make more errors than the fish in Experiment 1 that could access non-numerical information in order to accomplish the task. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Mosquitofish can learn to discriminate small quantities, even when non-numerical indicators of quantity are unavailable, hence providing the first evidence that fish, like primates, can use numbers. As in humans and non-human primates, genuine counting appears to be a 'last resort' strategy in fish, when no other

  7. Functional diversity of non-lethal effects, chemical camouflage, and variation in fish avoidance in colonizing beetles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Resetarits, William J; Pintar, Matthew R

    2016-12-01

    Predators play an extremely important role in natural communities. In freshwater systems, fish can dominate sorting both at the colonization and post-colonization stage. Specifically, for many colonizing species, fish can have non-lethal, direct effects that exceed the lethal direct effects of predation. Functionally diverse fish species with a range of predatory capabilities have previously been observed to elicit functionally equivalent responses on oviposition in tree frogs. We tested this hypothesis of functional equivalence of non-lethal effects for four predatory fish species, using naturally colonizing populations of aquatic beetles. Among taxa other than mosquitoes, and with the exception of the chemically camouflaged pirate perch, Aphredoderus sayanus, we provide the first evidence of variation in colonization or oviposition responses to different fish species. Focusing on total abundance, Fundulus chrysotus, a gape-limited, surface-feeding fish, elicited unique responses among colonizing Hydrophilidae, with the exception of the smallest and most abundant taxa, Paracymus, while Dytiscidae responded similarly to all avoided fish. Neither family responded to A. sayanus. Analysis of species richness and multivariate characterization of the beetle assemblages for the four fish species and controls revealed additional variation among the three avoided species and confirmed that chemical camouflage in A. sayanus results in assemblages essentially identical to fishless controls. The origin of this variation in beetle responses to different fish is unknown, but may involve variation in cue sensitivity, different behavioral algorithms, or differential responses to species-specific fish cues. The identity of fish species occupying aquatic habitats is crucial to understanding community structure, as varying strengths of lethal and non-lethal effects, as well as their interaction, create complex landscapes of predator effects and challenge the notion of functional

  8. Comparative analyses of contaminant levels in bottom feeding and predatory fish using the National Contaminant Biomonitoring Program data

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kidwell, J.M. [Clement International Corp., Fairfax, VA (United States); Phillips, L.J. [Versar Inc., Springfield, VA (United States); Birchard, G.F. [George Mason Univ., Fairfax, VA (United States)

    1995-06-01

    Both bottom feeding and predatory fish accumulate chemical contaminants found in water. Bottom feeders are readily exposed to the greater quantities of chlorinated hydrocarbons and metals that accumulate in sediments. Predators, on the other hand, may bioaccumulate organochlorine pesticides, PCBs, and metals from the surrounding water or from feeding on other fish, including bottom feeders, which may result in the biomagnification of these compounds in their tissues. This study used National Contaminant Biomonitoring Program data produced by the Fish and Wildlife Service to test the hypothesis that differences exist between bottom feeders and predators in tissue levels of organochlorine pesticides, PCBs, and metals. 7 refs., 2 tabs.

  9. Predation of Ladybird Beetles (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) by Amphibians.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sloggett, John J

    2012-07-18

    Studies of predation of ladybird beetles (Coccinellidae) have focused on a limited number of predator taxa, such as birds and ants, while other potential predators have received limited attention. I here consider amphibians as predators of ladybirds. Published amphibian gut analyses show that ladybirds are quite often eaten by frogs and toads (Anura), with recorded frequencies reaching up to 15% of dietary items. Salamanders (Caudata) eat ladybirds less frequently, probably as their habits less often bring them into contact with the beetles. Amphibians do not appear to be deleteriously affected by the potentially toxic alkaloids that ladybirds possess. Amphibians, especially frogs and toads, use primarily prey movement as a release cue to attack their food; it is thus likely that their ability to discriminate against ladybirds and other chemically defended prey is limited. Because of this poor discriminatory power, amphibians have apparently evolved non-specific resistance to prey defensive chemicals, including ladybird alkaloids. Although amphibian-related ladybird mortality is limited, in certain habitats it could outweigh mortality from more frequently studied predators, notably birds. The gut analyses from the herpetological literature used in this study, suggest that in studying predation of insects, entomologists should consider specialized literature on other animal groups.

  10. Field experiments on responses of a freshwater, benthic macroinvertebrate community to vertebrate predators

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thorp, J.H.; Bergey, E.A.

    1981-01-01

    The seasonal importance of vertebrate predators in potentially regulating the abundance and diversity of the benthic macroinvertebrates in the littoral zone of a soft-bottom reservoir that receives thermal effluent from a nuclear production reactor was examined. Thirty-six predator (fish and turtle) exclusion cages (4 m 2 ) were placed in shallow water at six locations along a thermal gradient in Par Pond, a 1100-ha cooling reservoir on the Savannah River Plant near Aiken, South Carolina, USA. An additional 36 control plots (4 m 2 ) were also set up. Cages were in place during three, 3-mo test periods beginning in September 1977. Estimates of benthic density, taxon richness, and distribution within functional groups (defined by feeding mechanism) were calculated for each test period. Effects of temperature on predator-prey relationships were also determined. Experimental results of this study suggest that vertebrate predation was not the fundamental parameter organizing the benthic macroinvertebrate community in the littoral zone of this reservoir. Neither taxon richness nor density of total macroinvertebrates was conclusively related to predator treatment. Relationships between predator treatment and community response (changes in density and taxon richness) were generally unaffected by either plot locality, temperature fluctuations from thermal effluent, or seasonal changes. When data from caged and control plots were pooled, however, both location and water temperature individually had direct impacts on the benthic community. From these results and other field studies it is hypothesized that individual species of keystone benthic predators do not occur in the littoral zone of freshwater lentic environments with soft bottoms

  11. The role of the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal/interrenal axis in mediating predator-avoidance trade-offs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, Breanna N; Carr, James A

    2016-05-01

    Maintaining energy balance and reproducing are important for fitness, yet animals have evolved mechanisms by which the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal/interrenal (HPA/HPI) axis can shut these activities off. While HPA/HPI axis inhibition of feeding and reproduction may have evolved as a predator defense, to date there has been no review across taxa of the causal evidence for such a relationship. Here we review the literature on this topic by addressing evidence for three predictions: that exposure to predators decreases reproduction and feeding, that exposure to predators activates the HPA/HPI axis, and that predator-induced activation of the HPA/HPI axis inhibits foraging and reproduction. Weight of evidence indicates that exposure to predator cues inhibits several aspects of foraging and reproduction. While the evidence from fish and mammals supports the hypothesis that predator cues activate the HPA/HPI axis, the existing data in other vertebrate taxa are equivocal. A causal role for the HPA axis in predator-induced suppression of feeding and reproduction has not been demonstrated to date, although many studies report correlative relationships between HPA activity and reproduction and/or feeding. Manipulation of HPA/HPI axis signaling will be required in future studies to demonstrate direct mediation of predator-induced inhibition of feeding and reproduction. Understanding the circuitry linking sensory pathways to their control of the HPA/HPI axis also is needed. Finally, the role that fear and anxiety pathways play in the response of the HPA axis to predator cues is needed to better understand the role that predators have played in shaping anxiety related behaviors in all species, including humans. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Development of a System-Wide Predator Control Program: Stepwise Implementation of a Predation Index, Predator Control Fisheries, and Evaluation Plan in the Columbia River Basin; Northern Pikeminnow Management Program, 2001 Annual Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Porter, Russell G.; Winther, Eric C.; Fox, Lyle G.

    2003-03-01

    This report presents results for year eleven in a basin-wide program to harvest northern pikeminnow (Ptychocheilus oregonensis). This program was started in an effort to reduce predation by northern pikeminnow on juvenile salmonids during their emigration from natal streams to the ocean. Earlier work in the Columbia River Basin suggested predation by northern pikeminnow on juvenile salmonids might account for most of the 10-20% mortality juvenile salmonids experience in each of eight Columbia River and Snake River reservoirs. Modeling simulations based on work in John Day Reservoir from 1982 through 1988 indicated that, if predator-size northern pikeminnow were exploited at a 10-20% rate, the resulting restructuring of their population could reduce their predation on juvenile salmonids by 50%. To test this hypothesis, we implemented a sport-reward angling fishery and a commercial longline fishery in the John Day Pool in 1990. We also conducted an angling fishery in areas inaccessible to the public at four dams on the mainstem Columbia River and at Ice Harbor Dam on the Snake River. Based on the success of these limited efforts, we implemented three test fisheries on a system-wide scale in 1991--a tribal longline fishery above Bonneville Dam, a sport-reward fishery, and a dam-angling fishery. Low catch of target fish and high cost of implementation resulted in discontinuation of the tribal longline fishery. However, the sport-reward and dam-angling fisheries were continued in 1992 and 1993. In 1992, we investigated the feasibility of implementing a commercial longline fishery in the Columbia River below Bonneville Dam and found that implementation of this fishery was also infeasible.

  13. Influence of watershed activities on the water quality and fish assemblages of a tropical African reservoir.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mustapha, Moshood K

    2009-09-01

    Agricultural and fisheries activities around the watershed of an African tropical reservoir (Oyun reservoir, Offa, Nigeria) were found to contribute significantly to water quality deterioration of the dam axis of the reservoir, leading to eutrophication of that part of the reservoir. This is evident from the high amount of nitrate (6.4 mg/l), phosphate (2.2 mg/l) and sulphate (16.9 mg/l) in the water body which was higher than most other reservoirs in Nigeria. These nutrients originate in fertilizer run-offs from nearby farmlands and were found in higher concentrations in the rainy season which is usually the peak of agricultural activities in the locality. The eutrophication was more pronounced on the dam axis because it is the point of greatest human contact where pressure and run-off of sediments were high. The eutrophication altered the food web cycle which consequently affected the fish species composition and abundance with the dominance of cichlids (planktivorous group) and decline of some species in the fish population. Best management practices (BMP) to control and reduce the eutrophication and improve water quality and fish assemblages should be adopted and adapted to suit the situation in the reservoir.

  14. Maternal intraguild predation risk affects offspring anti-predator behavior and learning in mites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seiter, Michael; Schausberger, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Predation risk is a strong selective force shaping prey morphology, life history and behavior. Anti-predator behaviors may be innate, learned or both but little is known about the transgenerational behavioral effects of maternally experienced predation risk. We examined intraguild predation (IGP) risk-induced maternal effects on offspring anti-predator behavior, including learning, in the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis. We exposed predatory mite mothers during egg production to presence or absence of the IG predator Amblyseius andersoni and assessed whether maternal stress affects the anti-predator behavior, including larval learning ability, of their offspring as protonymphs. Protonymphs emerging from stressed or unstressed mothers, and having experienced IGP risk as larvae or not, were subjected to choice situations with and without IG predator traces. Predator-experienced protonymphs from stressed mothers were the least active and acted the boldest in site choice towards predator cues. We argue that the attenuated response of the protonymphs to predator traces alone represents optimized risk management because no immediate risk existed. Such behavioral adjustment could reduce the inherent fitness costs of anti-predator behaviors. Overall, our study suggests that P. persimilis mothers experiencing IGP risk may prime their offspring to behave more optimally in IGP environments. PMID:26449645

  15. A Eulerian nutrient to fish model of the Baltic Sea — A feasibility-study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Radtke, Hagen; Neumann, Thomas; Fennel, Wolfgang

    2013-09-01

    A nutrient-to-fish-model with an explicit two-way interaction between a biogeochemical model of the lower food web and a fish model component is presented for the example of the Baltic Sea, demonstrating the feasibility of a consistent coupling of the upper and lower parts of the food web in a Eulerian model system. In the Baltic Sea, the fish stock is dominated by two prey species (sprat and herring) and one predator (cod). The dynamics of the fish model is driven by size (mass-class) dependent predator-prey interactions while the interaction between the biogeochemical and Fish model component is established through feeding of prey fish on zooplankton and recycling of fish biomass to nutrients and detritus. The fish model component is coupled to an advanced three dimensional biogeochemical model (ERGOM, Neumann et al., 2002). A horizontally explicit representation of fish requires the implementation of fish behavior. As a first step, we propose an algorithm to stimulate fish migration by letting the fish follow the food. Moreover, fish species are guided to their respective spawning areas. Results of first three-dimensional simulations are presented with emphasis on the transport of matter by moving fish. The spawning areas of cod and sprat are in the deep basins, which are not well reached by advective transport. Hence the deposition of matter in these areas by spawning fish could play some role in the distribution of matter. The approach is not limited to applications for the Baltic and the model can be transferred also to other systems.

  16. Injury-mediated decrease in locomotor performance increases predation risk in schooling fish

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Krause, J.; Herbert-Read, J. E.; Seebacher, F.

    2017-01-01

    The costs and benefits of group living often depend on the spatial position of individuals within groups and the ability of individuals to occupy preferred positions. For example, models of predation events for moving prey groups predict higher mortality risk for individuals at the periphery and .......This article is part of the themed issue 'Physiological determinants of social behaviour in animals'....

  17. Landscape features influence postrelease predation on endangered black-footed ferrets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poessel, S.A.; Breck, S.W.; Biggins, D.E.; Livieri, T.M.; Crooks, K.R.; Angeloni, L.

    2011-01-01

    Predation can be a critical factor influencing recovery of endangered species. In most recovery efforts lethal and nonlethal influences of predators are not sufficiently understood to allow prediction of predation risk, despite its importance. We investigated whether landscape features could be used to model predation risk from coyotes (Canis latrans) and great horned owls (Bubo virginianus) on the endangered black-footed ferret (Mustela nigripes). We used location data of reintroduced ferrets from 3 sites in South Dakota to determine whether exposure to landscape features typically associated with predators affected survival of ferrets, and whether ferrets considered predation risk when choosing habitat near perches potentially used by owls or near linear features predicted to be used by coyotes. Exposure to areas near likely owl perches reduced ferret survival, but landscape features potentially associated with coyote movements had no appreciable effect on survival. Ferrets were located within 90 m of perches more than expected in 2 study sites that also had higher ferret mortality due to owl predation. Densities of potential coyote travel routes near ferret locations were no different than expected in all 3 sites. Repatriated ferrets might have selected resources based on factors other than predator avoidance. Considering an easily quantified landscape feature (i.e., owl perches) can enhance success of reintroduction efforts for ferrets. Nonetheless, development of predictive models of predation risk and management strategies to mitigate that risk is not necessarily straightforward for more generalist predators such as coyotes. ?? 2011 American Society of Mammalogists.

  18. Limnology and fisheries potential of Lake le Roux

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Allanson, BR

    1983-12-01

    Full Text Available research be undertaken on the trophic resources and their utilization by zooplankton in silt-laden waters, as exemplified in the Orange River reservoirs. (5) That the determinants of resource exploitation by indigenous planktivorous fish... of their diet by exploiting a small part of the stock of zooplankton, visually selecting the largest individuals. As a visual planktivore, the smallmouth yellowfish feeds during the daytime. The effectiveness of feeding is markedly influenced by water...

  19. Sub-indicator: Prey fish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weidel, Brian C.; Dunlop, Erin

    2017-01-01

    , native species in Lake Huron comprised less than 10% of the community in 1970, but since alewife have declined, now represent nearly 80% of the community (Figure 2). Prey fish data are most consistent for in-lake populations, which are reported here; data from connecting channels was not consistently available across the basin. Abundance was not used to judge prey fish status since successful, basin-wide management actions, including mineral nutrient input reductions and piscivore restoration, both inherently reduce prey fish abundance. However, recent abundance trends as they relate to predator prey balance are referenced, such as in Lakes Michigan and Huron where piscivore stocking is being reduced to lower predation demand on prey fish populations and maintain sport fisheries.

  20. Adaptive Advantage of Myrmecochory in the Ant-Dispersed Herb Lamium amplexicaule (Lamiaceae: Predation Avoidance through the Deterrence of Post-Dispersal Seed Predators.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Koki Tanaka

    Full Text Available Seed dispersal by ants (myrmecochory is found worldwide, but the benefits that plants obtain from this mutualism remain uncertain. In the present study, we conducted laboratory experiments to demonstrate seed predator avoidance as a benefit of myrmecochory using the annual ant-dispersed herb Lamium amplexicaule, the disperser ant Tetramorium tsushimae, and the seed predatory burrower bug Adomerus rotundus. We compared the predation intensity of Lamium amplexicaule seeds by Adomerus rotundus under the presence or absence of Tetramorium tsushimae. Both the number of seeds sucked by Adomerus rotundus adults and the feeding duration of sucked seeds by nymphs were significantly reduced in the presence of ants. This effect was most likely due to the behavioral alteration of Adomerus rotundus in response to the ant presence, because ants seldom predated Adomerus rotundus during the experiment. Our results demonstrated that the presence of ants decreases post-dispersal seed predation, even when the ants do not bury the seeds. The present study thus suggests that the non-consumptive effects of ants on seed predators benefit myrmecochorous plants.

  1. Identification of potential target levels for Central Baltic Sea fishing mortalities, taking multispecies interactions into account

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vinther, Morten; Neuenfeldt, Stefan; Eero, Margit

    2012-01-01

    for implementation in management, however, the multispecies aspects depend on predation data mainly from the 1980s and there is an urgent need to update the information base. The current productivity regime and spatial distribution of fish stocks in the Baltic is different from the earlier period when predation data...

  2. Species Interactions Drive Fish Biodiversity Loss in a High-CO2 World.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagelkerken, Ivan; Goldenberg, Silvan U; Ferreira, Camilo M; Russell, Bayden D; Connell, Sean D

    2017-07-24

    Accelerating climate change is eroding the functioning and stability of ecosystems by weakening the interactions among species that stabilize biological communities against change [1]. A key challenge to forecasting the future of ecosystems centers on how to extrapolate results from short-term, single-species studies to community-level responses that are mediated by key mechanisms such as competition, resource availability (bottom-up control), and predation (top-down control) [2]. We used CO 2 vents as potential analogs of ocean acidification combined with in situ experiments to test current predictions of fish biodiversity loss and community change due to elevated CO 2 [3] and to elucidate the potential mechanisms that drive such change. We show that high risk-taking behavior and competitive strength, combined with resource enrichment and collapse of predator populations, fostered already common species, enabling them to double their populations under acidified conditions. However, the release of these competitive dominants from predator control led to suppression of less common and subordinate competitors that did not benefit from resource enrichment and reduced predation. As a result, local biodiversity was lost and novel fish community compositions were created under elevated CO 2 . Our study identifies the species interactions most affected by ocean acidification, revealing potential sources of natural selection. We also reveal how diminished predator abundances can have cascading effects on local species diversity, mediated by complex species interactions. Reduced overfishing of predators could therefore act as a key action to stall diversity loss and ecosystem change in a high-CO 2 world. VIDEO ABSTRACT. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Predation efficiency of Anopheles gambiae larvae by aquatic predators in western Kenya highlands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nyindo Mramba

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The current status of insecticide resistance in mosquitoes and the effects of insecticides on non-target insect species have raised the need for alternative control methods for malaria vectors. Predation has been suggested as one of the important regulation mechanisms for malaria vectors in long-lasting aquatic habitats, but the predation efficiency of the potential predators is largely unknown in the highlands of western Kenya. In the current study, we examined the predation efficiency of five predators on Anopheles gambiae s.s larvae in 24 hour and semi- field evaluations. Methods Predators were collected from natural habitats and starved for 12 hours prior to starting experiments. Preliminary experiments were conducted to ascertain the larval stage most predated by each predator species. When each larval instar was subjected to predation, third instar larvae were predated at the highest rate. Third instar larvae of An. gambiae were introduced into artificial habitats with and without refugia at various larval densities. The numbers of surviving larvae were counted after 24 hours in 24. In semi-field experiments, the larvae were counted daily until they were all either consumed or had developed to the pupal stage. Polymerase chain reaction was used to confirm the presence of An. gambiae DNA in predator guts. Results Experiments found that habitat type (P P P P An. gambiae DNA was found in at least three out of ten midguts for all predator species. Gambusia affins was the most efficient, being three times more efficient than tadpoles. Conclusion These experiments provide insight into the efficiency of specific natural predators against mosquito larvae. These naturally occurring predators may be useful in biocontrol strategies for aquatic stage An. gambiae mosquitoes. Further investigations should be done in complex natural habitats for these predators.

  4. Study of dioxin and dioxin-like PCB levels in fatty fish from Sweden 2000-2002

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ankarberg, E.; Bjerselius, R.; Aune, M.; Darnerud, P.O.; Larsson, L.; Andersson, A.; Toernkvist, A.; Glynn, A. [Swedish National Food Administration, Research and Development Dept., Uppsala (Sweden); Tysklind, M.; Bergek, S. [Environmental Chemistry, Umea Univ. (Sweden); Lundstedt-Enkel, K. [Dept. of Environmental Toxicology, Uppsala Univ. (Sweden); Karlsson, L. [Inst. of Freshwater Research, National Board of Fisheries, Aelvkarleby (Sweden)

    2004-09-15

    The levels of PCDD/Fs and PCBs in fatty fish from the Baltic Sea area are still of major concern in Sweden, although the levels have decreased in Baltic Sea biota since the 1970. During later years this decrease seems to have leveled off, and at least dioxin levels in Baltic herring seem to be more or less the same during the last 10 years period. Harmonised EU maximum levels have been established for PCDD/Fs in fish and fishery products for human consumption, and the maximum level is 4 pg WHO-PCDD/F-TEQ/g fresh weight. Certain fatty fish species in the Baltic Sea are shown to have levels of PCDD/Fs exceeding the maximum level. However, because of protective dietary advice, Sweden and Finland have an exemption from the Council regulation that allows national marketing of fish and fishery products that exceed the maximum level for PCDD/F. For dioxin-like PCBs, common EU maximum levels have not yet been established. However, during 2004 the Commission will review the present maximum levels for dioxins in the light of new data, with a particular aim to include dioxin-like PCBs. The Swedish National Food Administration (NFA) has undertaken a survey to analyse the concentrations of PCDD/Fs and dioxin-like PCBs in fatty fish in the Baltic Sea area. The study presents results from analyses of eel (Anguilla anguilla), salmon (Salmo salar), brown trout (Salmo trutta), whitefish (Coregonus lavaretus), herring (Clupea harengus), sprat (Sprattus sprattus), cod (Gadus morhua callarias) and vendace (roe) (from Coregonus albula) from several locations in the Baltic Sea. This study reports the fifth part of the results from the analyses. The entire study is available on www.slv.se as interim reports 1-5.

  5. Predation on rose galls: parasitoids and predators determine gall size through directional selection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zoltán László

    Full Text Available Both predators and parasitoids can have significant effects on species' life history traits, such as longevity or clutch size. In the case of gall inducers, sporadically there is evidence to suggest that both vertebrate predation and insect parasitoid attack may shape the optimal gall size. While the effects of parasitoids have been studied in detail, the influence of vertebrate predation is less well-investigated. To better understand this aspect of gall size evolution, we studied vertebrate predation on galls of Diplolepis rosae on rose (Rosa canina shrubs. We measured predation frequency, predation incidence, and predation rate in a large-scale observational field study, as well as an experimental field study. Our combined results suggest that, similarly to parasitoids, vertebrate predation makes a considerable contribution to mortality of gall inducer larvae. On the other hand, its influence on gall size is in direct contrast to the effect of parasitoids, as frequency of vertebrate predation increases with gall size. This suggests that the balance between predation and parasitoid attack shapes the optimal size of D. rosae galls.

  6. Coastal niches for terrestrial predators: a stable isotope study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mellbrand, K.; Hamback, P.A., E-mail: peter.hamback@botan.su.se [Stockholm Univ., Dept. of Botany, Stockholm (Sweden)

    2010-12-15

    The purpose of this study was to identify the use of marine versus terrestrial food items by terrestrial arthropod predators on Baltic Sea shores. The inflow of marine nutrients in the area consists mainly of marine algal detritus and emerging aquatic insects (e.g., chironomids). Diets of coastal arthropods were examined using carbon and nitrogen stable isotope analysis in a two source mixing model. The results suggest that spiders are the terrestrial predators mainly utilizing nutrients and energy of marine origin on Baltic Sea shores, whereas insect predators such as beetles and heteropterans mainly utilize nutrients and energy derived from terrestrial sources, possibly owing to differences in hunting behaviour. That spiders are the predators which benefit the most from the marine inflow suggest that eventual effects of marine subsidies for the coastal ecosystem as a whole are likely mediated by spiders. (author)

  7. Coastal niches for terrestrial predators: a stable isotope study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mellbrand, K.; Hamback, P.A.

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to identify the use of marine versus terrestrial food items by terrestrial arthropod predators on Baltic Sea shores. The inflow of marine nutrients in the area consists mainly of marine algal detritus and emerging aquatic insects (e.g., chironomids). Diets of coastal arthropods were examined using carbon and nitrogen stable isotope analysis in a two source mixing model. The results suggest that spiders are the terrestrial predators mainly utilizing nutrients and energy of marine origin on Baltic Sea shores, whereas insect predators such as beetles and heteropterans mainly utilize nutrients and energy derived from terrestrial sources, possibly owing to differences in hunting behaviour. That spiders are the predators which benefit the most from the marine inflow suggest that eventual effects of marine subsidies for the coastal ecosystem as a whole are likely mediated by spiders. (author)

  8. A compilation of empirical data and variations in data concerning radiocesium in water, sediments and fish in European lakes after Chernobyl

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hakanson, L.

    1999-01-01

    This work concerns the variability of radiocesium within lakes. The focus is on a broad set of data concerning radiocesium after the Chernobyl accident in lake water, sediments and different species of fish. Data are available to the author from three European data bases. Basic questions are: Are there any general patterns to be found concerning the variability of 137 Cs in lakes? Is it possible to give any recommendations concerning CV values (coefficient of variation; CV=SD/MV; SD=standard deviation, MV=mean value) for radiocesium in lake water, sediments and different species of fish? The analysis can be summarised as: 1. The CV values for lake water vary around 0.3 and are rather independent of the time after fallout. 2. One can use a CV of 0.6 as a reference for the typical uncertainty in radiocesium concentration in surficial lake sediments. CV values are generally higher (up to CV=1) for bottom areas dominated by erosion and transport processes (for fine material following Stokes' law) and lower (CV approx. 0.2) for areas dominated by continuous sedimentation and fine deposits (accumulation areas). CV values for radiocesium in sediments are also likely to increase with contamination and the size of the lake. 3. A reference CV of 0.22 would be a reasonable general CV value for lake fish. CV values are typically larger just after fallout (CV approx. 0.3) and decrease with time after fallout (to about 0.15). CV values are likely to increase with trophic level, from about 0.1 for planktivores to about 0.3 for piscivores, but these CV are based on limited data and are quite uncertain. The benefit of general empirical CV values is evident in modelling, e.g., when empirical data are compared to modelled values. The CV values for water, sediments and fish can be used to set empirical uncertainty bands for model predictions to enable meaningful discussions about predictive success. (Copyright (c) 1999 Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam. All rights reserved.)

  9. Morphological plasticity in the tropical sponge Anthosigmella varians: responses to predators and wave energy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, Malcolm S; Hill, April L

    2002-02-01

    The goal of the research presented here was to examine phenotypic plasticity exhibited by three morphotypes of the common Caribbean sponge Anthosigmella varians (Duchassaing & Michelotti). We were interested in examining the biotic (and, to a lesser extent, abiotic) factors responsible for branch production in this species. We also tested the hypothesis that the skeleton may serve an antipredator function in this sponge, focusing on vertebrate fish predators (i.e., angelfish) in this work. In transplant and caging experiments, unprotected forma varians replicates were immediately consumed by angelfish, while caged replicates persisted on the reef for several months. These findings support the hypothesis that predators (and not wave energy) restrict forma varians to lagoonal habitats. Branch production was not observed in A. varians forma incrustans when sponges were protected from predators or placed in predator-free, low-wave-energy environments. It is not clear from our work whether forma incrustans is capable of producing branches (i.e., whether branch production is a plastic trait in this morph). Additional field experiments demonstrated that A. varians forma varians increased spicule concentrations, compared to uninjured sponges, in response to artificial predation events, and A. varians forma rigida reduced spicule concentrations, compared to uncaged controls, when protected from predators. These findings indicate that spicule concentration is a plastic morphological trait that can be induced by damage, and that A. varians may be able to reduce spicule concentrations when environmental conditions change (e.g., in the absence of predators). The potential significance of inducible defenses and structural anti-predator defenses in sponges is discussed in relation to recent work on sponge chemical defenses.

  10. Growth and social behavior in a cichlid fish are affected by social rearing environment and kinship

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hesse, Saskia; Thünken, Timo

    2014-04-01

    Living in groups is a widespread phenomenon in many animal taxa. The reduction of predation risk is thought to be an important cause for the formation of groups. Consequently, grouping behavior is particularly pronounced during vulnerable life stages, i.e., as juveniles. However, group living does not only provide benefits but also imposes costs on group members, e.g., increased competition for food. Thus, benefits of grouping behavior might not be evident when predation risk is absent. The adaptive significance of living and also developing in a group independent from predation risk has received relatively little attention although this might have important implications on the evolution and maintenance of group living. The first aim of the present study was to examine whether the social environment affects juvenile performance in the cichlid fish Pelvicachromis taeniatus and, secondly, whether kinship affects social behavior. Kin selection theory predicts benefits from grouping with kin. Here, we demonstrate that juveniles reared in a group grow on average faster compared to juveniles reared in isolation under standardized laboratory conditions without predation risk. Furthermore, we found significant differences in social behavior between juveniles reared in a group and reared in isolation. Fish reared in isolation were significantly more aggressive and less willing to shoal than group-reared fish. As expected, genetic relatedness influenced social behavior in group-reared fish as well: dyads of juveniles consisting of kin showed increased group cohesiveness compared to non-kin dyads. We discuss the potential benefits of group living in general and living with kin in particular.

  11. Predator-induced changes in metabolism cannot explain the growth/predation risk tradeoff.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ulrich K Steiner

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Defence against predators is usually accompanied by declining rates of growth or development. The classical growth/predation risk tradeoff assumes reduced activity as the cause of these declines. However, in many cases these costs cannot be explained by reduced foraging effort or enhanced allocation to defensive structures under predation risk. Here, we tested for a physiological origin of defence costs by measuring oxygen consumption in tadpoles (Rana temporaria exposed to predation risk over short and long periods of time. The short term reaction was an increase in oxygen consumption, consistent with the "fight-or-flight" response observed in many organisms. The long term reaction showed the opposite pattern: tadpoles reduced oxygen consumption after three weeks exposure to predators, which would act to reduce the growth cost of predator defence. The results point to an instantaneous and reversible stress response to predation risk. This suggests that the tradeoff between avoiding predators and growing rapidly is not caused by changes in metabolic rate, and must be sought in other behavioural or physiological processes.

  12. Factors affecting methylmercury biomagnification by a widespread aquatic invertebrate predator, the phantom midge larvae Chaoborus

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Le Jeune, Anne-Hélène; Bourdiol, Floriane; Aldamman, Lama; Perron, Tania; Amyot, Marc; Pinel-Alloul, Bernadette

    2012-01-01

    MeHg biomagnification by the phantom midge Chaoborus in relation to MeHg concentrations in their prey and its migratory behavior was investigated in two Canadian Precambrian Shield lakes. Three Chaoborus species with contrasted migratory behavior were collected in a fishless and a fish-inhabited lake. All species accumulated MeHg through their ontogenic development. In the lake inhabited by fish, all instars of Chaoborus punctipennis displayed a marked migratory behavior and were unable to biomagnify MeHg, whereas in the fishless lake, Chaoborus americanus and Chaoborus trivittatus biomagnified MeHg. Reduced biomagnification capacity of C. trivittatus, the coexisting species living with C. americanus, was also ascribed to a progressive vertical segregation with age. Growth dilution, amount and type of prey items or trophic position could not explain the different patterns of biomagnification. Our findings demonstrate that the most common invertebrate predator of temperate planktonic food webs can biomagnify mercury, contrarily to previous reports. - Highlights: ► Chaoborids are key invertebrate predators of temperate freshwater food webs. ► We sampled three Chaoborus species with contrasted migratory behavior. ► All species accumulated MeHg through their development. ► We found that some species could biomagnify mercury. ► The best biomagnifiers were those who migrated the least. - Chaoborids, the most common invertebrate predator of temperate planktonic food webs, can biomagnify mercury, contrarily to previous reports.

  13. Bioaccumulation of selenium from coal fly ash and associated environmental hazards in a freshwater fish community

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Besser, J.; Giesy, J.; Brown, R.; Herdt, T.; Dawson, G.

    1995-01-01

    Bioaccumulation of Se by fish from Pigeon River and Pigeon Lake, Michigan, which receive inputs of Se from a coal fly-ash disposal facility, was studied to assess potential hazards of Se toxicity to fish and wildlife. Se concentrations in fish from sites receiving Se inputs from fly ash disposal ponds were significantly greater than concentrations in fish from upstream sites, which were near normal background concentrations. Se bioaccumulation differed substantially among fish species, especially in the most contaminated site, where whole-body Se concentrations for the five species analyzed ranged from 1.4 to 3.8 microg/g (wet wt.). The top predator in the community, northern pike (Esox lucius), had Se concentrations less than those in likely prey species. Among lower-order consumers, Se concentrations were greater in limnetic species (spottail shiner, Notropis hudsonius, and yellow perch, Perca flavescens), than in benthic species (white sucker, Catostomus commersoni, and rock bass, Ambloplites rupestris). Se concentrations in tissues of fish from the lower Pigeon River and Pigeon Lake approached, but did not exceed lowest observable effect concentrations (LOAECs) for Se in tissues of sensitive fish species. However, Se concentrations in several fish species exceeded LOAECs for dietary Se exposure of sensitive species of birds and mammals, suggesting that consumption of fish in these areas may pose a hazard to piscivorous wildlife

  14. The role of a dominant predator in shaping biodiversity over space and time in a marine ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellingsen, Kari E; Anderson, Marti J; Shackell, Nancy L; Tveraa, Torkild; Yoccoz, Nigel G; Frank, Kenneth T

    2015-09-01

    1. Exploitation of living marine resources has resulted in major changes to populations of targeted species and functional groups of large-bodied species in the ocean. However, the effects of overfishing and collapse of large top predators on the broad-scale biodiversity of oceanic ecosystems remain largely unexplored. 2. Populations of the Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) were overfished and several collapsed in the early 1990s across Atlantic Canada, providing a unique opportunity to study potential ecosystem-level effects of the reduction of a dominant predator on fish biodiversity, and to identify how such effects might interact with other environmental factors, such as changes in climate, over time. 3. We combined causal modelling with model selection and multimodel inference to analyse 41 years of fishery-independent survey data (1970-2010) and quantify ecosystem-level effects of overfishing and climate variation on the biodiversity of fishes across a broad area (172 000 km(2) ) of the Scotian Shelf. 4. We found that alpha and beta diversity increased with decreases in cod occurrence; fish communities were less homogeneous and more variable in systems where cod no longer dominated. These effects were most pronounced in the colder north-eastern parts of the Scotian Shelf. 5. Our results provide strong evidence that intensive harvesting (and collapse) of marine apex predators can have large impacts on biodiversity, with far-reaching consequences for ecological stability across an entire ecosystem. © 2015 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of British Ecological Society.

  15. Distribution of Po-210 in two species of predatory marine fish from the Brazilian coast

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mársico, E.T.; Ferreira, M.S.; São Clemente, S.C.; Gouvea, R.C.S.; Jesus, E.F.O.; Conti, C.C.; Conte Junior, C.A.; Kelecom, A.G.A.C.

    2014-01-01

    Polonium-210 ( 210 Po) concentration was quantified in the muscle tissue and organs of two predatory marine fishes (Genypterus brasiliensis and Cynoscion microlepidotus) from Cabo Frio, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The species C. microlepidotus, a benthic carnivore, registered higher 210 Po in its tissue. The organs associated with digestion displayed the maximum radionuclide compared with other organs. The average activity was 2 mBq kg −1 for G. brasiliensis and it was 6 mBq kg −1 for C. microlepidotus. The activity concentrations varied significantly between the species and among organs. -- Highlights: • We analyzed the distribution of 210 Po in two species of predator marine fish. • 210 Po tends to accumulate in some organs, which make this radionuclide radiotoxic. • The consumption of small quantities of fish can represent high potential of 210 Po exposure. • Data about 210 Po bioaccumulation in tropical predator marine fish are limited

  16. UV filters bioaccumulation in fish from Iberian river basins

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gago-Ferrero, Pablo [Dept. of Environmental Chemistry, Institute of Environmental Assessment and Water Research (IDAEA), Spanish Council for Scientific Research (CSIC), Jordi Girona 18-26, E-08034 Barcelona (Spain); Laboratory of Analytical Chemistry, Department of Chemistry, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Panepistimiopolis, 15771 Athens (Greece); Díaz-Cruz, M. Silvia, E-mail: sdcqam@cid.csic.es [Dept. of Environmental Chemistry, Institute of Environmental Assessment and Water Research (IDAEA), Spanish Council for Scientific Research (CSIC), Jordi Girona 18-26, E-08034 Barcelona (Spain); Barceló, Damià [Dept. of Environmental Chemistry, Institute of Environmental Assessment and Water Research (IDAEA), Spanish Council for Scientific Research (CSIC), Jordi Girona 18-26, E-08034 Barcelona (Spain); Catalan Institute for Water Research (ICRA), Parc Científic i Tecnològic de la Universitat de Girona, C/ Emili Grahit, 101 Edifici H2O, E-17003 Girona (Spain)

    2015-06-15

    The occurrence of eight organic UV filters (UV-Fs) was assessed in fish from four Iberian river basins. This group of compounds is extensively used in cosmetic products and other industrial goods to avoid the damaging effects of UV radiation, and has been found to be ubiquitous contaminants in the aquatic ecosystem. In particular, fish are considered by the scientific community to be the most feasible organism for contamination monitoring in aquatic ecosystems. Despite that, studies on the bioaccumulation of UV-F are scarce. In this study fish samples from four Iberian river basins under high anthropogenic pressure were analysed by liquid chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry (HPLC–MS/MS). Benzophenone-3 (BP3), ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate (EHMC), 4-methylbenzylidene camphor (4MBC) and octocrylene (OC) were the predominant pollutants in the fish samples, with concentrations in the range of ng/g dry weight (d.w.). The results indicated that most polluted area corresponded to Guadalquivir River basin, where maximum concentrations were found for EHMC (241.7 ng/g d.w.). Sediments from this river basin were also analysed. Lower values were observed in relation to fish for OC and EHMC, ranging from below the limits of detection to 23 ng/g d.w. Accumulation levels of UV-F in the fish were used to calculate biota-sediment accumulation factors (BSAFs). These values were always below 1, in the range of 0.04–0.3, indicating that the target UV-Fs are excreted by fish only to some extent. The fact that the highest concentrations were determined in predators suggests that biomagnification of UV-F may take place along the freshwater food web. - Highlights: • First evidence of UV filters in fish from Iberian rivers • Biota-sediment accumulation factors (BSAFs) were always below 1. • Predator species presented higher UV-F concentrations suggesting trophic magnification.

  17. UV filters bioaccumulation in fish from Iberian river basins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gago-Ferrero, Pablo; Díaz-Cruz, M. Silvia; Barceló, Damià

    2015-01-01

    The occurrence of eight organic UV filters (UV-Fs) was assessed in fish from four Iberian river basins. This group of compounds is extensively used in cosmetic products and other industrial goods to avoid the damaging effects of UV radiation, and has been found to be ubiquitous contaminants in the aquatic ecosystem. In particular, fish are considered by the scientific community to be the most feasible organism for contamination monitoring in aquatic ecosystems. Despite that, studies on the bioaccumulation of UV-F are scarce. In this study fish samples from four Iberian river basins under high anthropogenic pressure were analysed by liquid chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry (HPLC–MS/MS). Benzophenone-3 (BP3), ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate (EHMC), 4-methylbenzylidene camphor (4MBC) and octocrylene (OC) were the predominant pollutants in the fish samples, with concentrations in the range of ng/g dry weight (d.w.). The results indicated that most polluted area corresponded to Guadalquivir River basin, where maximum concentrations were found for EHMC (241.7 ng/g d.w.). Sediments from this river basin were also analysed. Lower values were observed in relation to fish for OC and EHMC, ranging from below the limits of detection to 23 ng/g d.w. Accumulation levels of UV-F in the fish were used to calculate biota-sediment accumulation factors (BSAFs). These values were always below 1, in the range of 0.04–0.3, indicating that the target UV-Fs are excreted by fish only to some extent. The fact that the highest concentrations were determined in predators suggests that biomagnification of UV-F may take place along the freshwater food web. - Highlights: • First evidence of UV filters in fish from Iberian rivers • Biota-sediment accumulation factors (BSAFs) were always below 1. • Predator species presented higher UV-F concentrations suggesting trophic magnification

  18. Changing Levels of Predation on Benthos as a Result of Exploitation of Fish Populations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hansson, S.; Frid, C.L.J.; Ragnarsson, S.A.; Rijnsdorp, A.; Steingrimsson, S.A.

    1999-01-01

    In many coastal areas fishing constitutes the dominant anthropogenic impact on coastal ecosystems. That fishing has altered the abundance and size spectra of fish communities is beyond doubt. We use time series of the abundance, in the North Sea, of 8 demersal fish species and data on food

  19. Large recovery of fish biomass in a no-take marine reserve.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Octavio Aburto-Oropeza

    Full Text Available No-take marine reserves are effective management tools used to restore fish biomass and community structure in areas depleted by overfishing. Cabo Pulmo National Park (CPNP was created in 1995 and is the only well enforced no-take area in the Gulf of California, Mexico, mostly because of widespread support from the local community. In 1999, four years after the establishment of the reserve, there were no significant differences in fish biomass between CPNP (0.75 t ha(-1 on average and other marine protected areas or open access areas in the Gulf of California. By 2009, total fish biomass at CPNP had increased to 4.24 t ha(-1 (absolute biomass increase of 3.49 t ha(-1, or 463%, and the biomass of top predators and carnivores increased by 11 and 4 times, respectively. However, fish biomass did not change significantly in other marine protected areas or open access areas over the same time period. The absolute increase in fish biomass at CPNP within a decade is the largest measured in a marine reserve worldwide, and it is likely due to a combination of social (strong community leadership, social cohesion, effective enforcement and ecological factors. The recovery of fish biomass inside CPNP has resulted in significant economic benefits, indicating that community-managed marine reserves are a viable solution to unsustainable coastal development and fisheries collapse in the Gulf of California and elsewhere.

  20. Dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyls in marine fish from Shandong, China, and human dietary exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Yanping; Jiang, Dafeng; Li, Fenghua; Chen, Jindong; Li, Wei; Jiao, Yanni; Li, Lu

    2018-05-22

    The occurrence and human dietary exposure of 12 dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyls (DL-PCBs) in 41 marine fish samples from Shandong Province of China were investigated. The DL-PCB congeners were extracted using automated Soxhlet extraction, purified via a composite column cleanup procedure and analyzed by gas chromatography-triple quadrupole mass spectrometry. DL-PCB congeners were found in all analyzed samples, with a mean concentration of 0.887 ng/g ww (wet weight). The TEQ concentrations of DL-PCBs in individual fish samples ranged from 0.011 to 9.214 pg WHO TEQ/g ww. The mean dietary intake for all fish species was 36.5 pg TEQ/kg bw/month, which was lower than the provisional tolerable monthly intake of 70 pg TEQ/kg bw/month set by the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives. To monitor the trend of DL-PCBs in fish for food safety control it is necessary to maintain a surveillance program.

  1. Coexistence of low coral cover and high fish biomass at Farquhar Atoll, Seychelles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedlander, Alan M; Obura, David; Aumeeruddy, Riaz; Ballesteros, Enric; Church, Julie; Cebrian, Emma; Sala, Enric

    2014-01-01

    We report a reef ecosystem where corals may have lost their role as major reef engineering species but fish biomass and assemblage structure is comparable to unfished reefs elsewhere around the world. This scenario is based on an extensive assessment of the coral reefs of Farquhar Atoll, the most southern of the Seychelles Islands. Coral cover and overall benthic community condition at Farquhar was poor, likely due to a combination of limited habitat, localized upwelling, past coral bleaching, and cyclones. Farquhar Atoll harbors a relatively intact reef fish assemblage with very large biomass (3.2 t ha(-1)) reflecting natural ecological processes that are not influenced by fishing or other local anthropogenic factors. The most striking feature of the reef fish assemblage is the dominance by large groupers, snappers, and jacks with large (>1 m) potato cod (Epinephelus tukula) and marbled grouper (E. polyphekadion), commonly observed at many locations. Napoleon wrasse (Cheilinus undulatus) and bumphead parrotfish (Bolbometopon muricatum) are listed as endangered and vulnerable, respectively, but were frequently encountered at Farquhar. The high abundance and large sizes of parrotfishes at Farquhar also appears to regulate macroalgal abundance and enhance the dominance of crustose corallines, which are a necessary condition for maintenance of healthy reef communities. Overall fish biomass and biomass of large predators at Farquhar are substantially higher than other areas within the Seychelles, and are some of the highest recorded in the Indian Ocean. Remote islands like Farquhar Atoll with low human populations and limited fishing pressure offer ideal opportunities for understanding whether reefs can be resilient from global threats if local threats are minimized.

  2. Coexistence of low coral cover and high fish biomass at Farquhar Atoll, Seychelles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alan M Friedlander

    Full Text Available We report a reef ecosystem where corals may have lost their role as major reef engineering species but fish biomass and assemblage structure is comparable to unfished reefs elsewhere around the world. This scenario is based on an extensive assessment of the coral reefs of Farquhar Atoll, the most southern of the Seychelles Islands. Coral cover and overall benthic community condition at Farquhar was poor, likely due to a combination of limited habitat, localized upwelling, past coral bleaching, and cyclones. Farquhar Atoll harbors a relatively intact reef fish assemblage with very large biomass (3.2 t ha(-1 reflecting natural ecological processes that are not influenced by fishing or other local anthropogenic factors. The most striking feature of the reef fish assemblage is the dominance by large groupers, snappers, and jacks with large (>1 m potato cod (Epinephelus tukula and marbled grouper (E. polyphekadion, commonly observed at many locations. Napoleon wrasse (Cheilinus undulatus and bumphead parrotfish (Bolbometopon muricatum are listed as endangered and vulnerable, respectively, but were frequently encountered at Farquhar. The high abundance and large sizes of parrotfishes at Farquhar also appears to regulate macroalgal abundance and enhance the dominance of crustose corallines, which are a necessary condition for maintenance of healthy reef communities. Overall fish biomass and biomass of large predators at Farquhar are substantially higher than other areas within the Seychelles, and are some of the highest recorded in the Indian Ocean. Remote islands like Farquhar Atoll with low human populations and limited fishing pressure offer ideal opportunities for understanding whether reefs can be resilient from global threats if local threats are minimized.

  3. Temporal dynamics of top predators interactions in the Barents Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durant, Joël M; Skern-Mauritzen, Mette; Krasnov, Yuri V; Nikolaeva, Natalia G; Lindstrøm, Ulf; Dolgov, Andrey

    2014-01-01

    The Barents Sea system is often depicted as a simple food web in terms of number of dominant feeding links. The most conspicuous feeding link is between the Northeast Arctic cod Gadus morhua, the world's largest cod stock which is presently at a historical high level, and capelin Mallotus villosus. The system also holds diverse seabird and marine mammal communities. Previous diet studies may suggest that these top predators (cod, bird and sea mammals) compete for food particularly with respect to pelagic fish such as capelin and juvenile herring (Clupea harengus), and krill. In this paper we explored the diet of some Barents Sea top predators (cod, Black-legged kittiwake Rissa tridactyla, Common guillemot Uria aalge, and Minke whale Balaenoptera acutorostrata). We developed a GAM modelling approach to analyse the temporal variation diet composition within and between predators, to explore intra- and inter-specific interactions. The GAM models demonstrated that the seabird diet is temperature dependent while the diet of Minke whale and cod is prey dependent; Minke whale and cod diets depend on the abundance of herring and capelin, respectively. There was significant diet overlap between cod and Minke whale, and between kittiwake and guillemot. In general, the diet overlap between predators increased with changes in herring and krill abundances. The diet overlap models developed in this study may help to identify inter-specific interactions and their dynamics that potentially affect the stocks targeted by fisheries.

  4. Encephalization in tropical teleost fishes and comparison with their mode of life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauchot, R; Randall, J E; Ridet, J M; Bauchot, M L

    1989-01-01

    The brains were dissected from a total of 1225 fishes representing 737 species, 310 genera and 113 families of tropical and subtropical teleosts. Each fish was weighed before brain dissection, and each brain weighed after its removal. The encephalization coefficient k was determined for each fish from a quadratic formula; to conveniently compare brain size of one species with that of another, we used an encephalization index so that an encephalization index of 100 is the average for all the species investigated. The encephalization indices for the families of fishes studied varied from 7 for the Moringuidae to 233 for the Coryphaenidae. There is no strong correlation in relative brain size with phylogenetic position. Although there is a general trend for the more highly evolved fishes to have larger brains, this is partially obscured by some high values in certain primitive groups and low ones in the more advanced. Elongate fishes have lower encephalization indices in general. This may in part be related to low phylogenetic position of most elongate species (anguilliform fishes, for example), in part to the greater relative body weight due to the longer vertebral column (and usually more numerous fin rays as as well), and to their usual mode of swimming by lateral undulations of the body (the most primitive type of aquatic locomotion--one in which the spinal cord plays a major role). No difference could be noted in the encephalization indices of herbivorous families of fishes compared to carnivorous ones. Within a genus, among medium to large-size fishes, those species of larger size tend to have lower encephalization indices. This may be related to larger fishes having less to fear of predators. Fishes which in some passive way avoid predation have low indices in general. This is particularly true of benthic species which conceal themselves by flattened form, fleshy protuberances or protective coloration, or which bury in the sediment or take refuge in burrows

  5. Body Size Regression Formulae, Proximate Composition and Energy Density of Eastern Bering Sea Mesopelagic Fish and Squid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinclair, Elizabeth H; Walker, William A; Thomason, James R

    2015-01-01

    The ecological significance of fish and squid of the mesopelagic zone (200 m-1000 m) is evident by their pervasiveness in the diets of a broad spectrum of upper pelagic predators including other fishes and squids, seabirds and marine mammals. As diel vertical migrators, mesopelagic micronekton are recognized as an important trophic link between the deep scattering layer and upper surface waters, yet fundamental aspects of the life history and energetic contribution to the food web for most are undescribed. Here, we present newly derived regression equations for 32 species of mesopelagic fish and squid based on the relationship between body size and the size of hard parts typically used to identify prey species in predator diet studies. We describe the proximate composition and energy density of 31 species collected in the eastern Bering Sea during May 1999 and 2000. Energy values are categorized by body size as a proxy for relative age and can be cross-referenced with the derived regression equations. Data are tabularized to facilitate direct application to predator diet studies and food web models.

  6. Environmental and human health risk assessment of organic micro-pollutants occurring in a Spanish marine fish farm

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Munoz, Ivan; Martinez Bueno, Maria J.; Agueera, Ana; Fernandez-Alba, Amadeo R.

    2010-01-01

    In this work the risk posed to seawater organisms, predators and humans is assessed, as a consequence of exposure to 12 organic micro-pollutants, namely metronidazole, trimethoprim, erythromycin, simazine, flumequine, carbaryl, atrazine, diuron, terbutryn, irgarol, diphenyl sulphone (DPS) and 2-thiocyanomethylthiobenzothiazole (TCMTB). The risk assessment study is based on a 1-year monitoring study at a Spanish marine fish farm, involving passive sampling techniques. The results showed that the risk threshold for irgarol concerning seawater organisms is exceeded. On the other hand, the risk to predators and especially humans through consumption of fish is very low, due to the low bioconcentration potential of the substances assessed. - Exposure and effects of twelve organic micro-pollutants are evaluated at a Spanish fish farm.

  7. Environmental and human health risk assessment of organic micro-pollutants occurring in a Spanish marine fish farm

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Munoz, Ivan, E-mail: ivanmuno@ual.e [Departamento de Hidrogeologia y Quimica Analitica, Universidad de Almeria, 04120 Almeria (Spain); Martinez Bueno, Maria J., E-mail: mjbueno@ual.e [Departamento de Hidrogeologia y Quimica Analitica, Universidad de Almeria, 04120 Almeria (Spain); Agueera, Ana, E-mail: aaguera@ual.e [Departamento de Hidrogeologia y Quimica Analitica, Universidad de Almeria, 04120 Almeria (Spain); Fernandez-Alba, Amadeo R., E-mail: amadeo@ual.e [Departamento de Hidrogeologia y Quimica Analitica, Universidad de Almeria, 04120 Almeria (Spain)

    2010-05-15

    In this work the risk posed to seawater organisms, predators and humans is assessed, as a consequence of exposure to 12 organic micro-pollutants, namely metronidazole, trimethoprim, erythromycin, simazine, flumequine, carbaryl, atrazine, diuron, terbutryn, irgarol, diphenyl sulphone (DPS) and 2-thiocyanomethylthiobenzothiazole (TCMTB). The risk assessment study is based on a 1-year monitoring study at a Spanish marine fish farm, involving passive sampling techniques. The results showed that the risk threshold for irgarol concerning seawater organisms is exceeded. On the other hand, the risk to predators and especially humans through consumption of fish is very low, due to the low bioconcentration potential of the substances assessed. - Exposure and effects of twelve organic micro-pollutants are evaluated at a Spanish fish farm.

  8. Macrozooplankton predation impact on anchovy (Engraulis encrasicolus) eggs mortality at the Bay of Biscay shelf break spawning centre

    KAUST Repository

    Albaina, Aitor

    2014-11-23

    A real-time PCR based method involving a species-specific probe was applied to detect Engraulis encrasicolus eggs predation by the macrozooplankton community during the 2011 spawning season. Three locations along the shelf break presenting contrasting but high prey densities were sampled. A total of 840 individuals from 38 taxa of potential macrozooplankton predators were assayed for E. encrasicolus DNA presence and 27 presented at least one positive signal. Carnivorous copepods were responsible for the most predation events (66%) followed by euphausiids (16%), chaetognaths (5%), and myctophid fish (4%). Macrozooplankton predation on anchovy eggs followed a type-I functional response with daily mortalities <4% of available prey abundance suggesting a negligible impact on the species recruitment at the shelf break spawning centre. © 2014 International Council for the Exploration of the Sea 2014. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  9. Fish screens at hydroelectric diversions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ott, R.F.

    1994-01-01

    Preventing downstream migrating fish from entering the turbines at hydroelectric projects is a standard mitigation goal of state and federal fishery management agencies. The object is to minimize the adverse impacts to the fish associated with the exclusion and passage through the bypass water conveyance facilities. In the western United States, most of the fishery management agencies have fish screen design criteria that focus on the approach and transportational velocities, maximum opening dimensions of the screen material, and the cleaning standards. Recently, more attention has been given to fish behavioral traits such as attraction and sustained and darting swimming speed, which has resulted in more attention to the position of the screens to the flow and the length of time the downstream migrants are exposed to the screens. Criteria for length of time of exposure, size and position of bypass, flow and velocities in the bypass entrances, discharge requirements back into the receiving water, and exposure to predation have created unique challenges to the fish screen designer. This paper discusses some of the more recent types of fixed fish screens that are being installed at hydroelectric plants that meet these challenges

  10. Nest predation risk explains variation in avian clutch size

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dillon, Kristen G.; Conway, Courtney J.

    2018-01-01

    Questions about the ecological drivers of, and mechanistic constraints on, productivity have driven research on life-history evolution for decades. Resource availability and offspring mortality are considered among the 2 most important influences on the number of offspring per reproductive attempt. We used a factorial experimental design to manipulate food abundance and perceived offspring predation risk in a wild avian population (red-faced warblers; Cardellina rubrifrons) to identify the mechanistic cause of variation in avian clutch size. Additionally, we tested whether female quality helped explain the extant variation in clutch size. We found no support for the Food Limitation or Female Quality Hypotheses, but we did find support for both predictions of the Nest Predation Risk Hypothesis. Females that experienced an experimentally heightened perception of offspring predation risk responded by laying a smaller clutch than females in the control group. Additionally, predation rates at artificial nests were highest where red-faced warbler clutch size was smallest (at high elevations). Life-history theory predicts that an individual should invest less in reproduction when high nest predation risk reduces the likely benefit from that nesting attempt and, indeed, we found that birds exhibit phenotypic plasticity in clutch size by laying fewer eggs in response to increasing nest predation risk.

  11. Rickettsia-like organism infection in a freshwater cultured fish Ophiocephalus argus C.in China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    GUO Qionglin; JIA Weizhang; HAN Xianpu; CAI Taozhen; GONG Xiaoning; SUN Xiaofeng

    2004-01-01

    From 2001 to 2002,a new and emergent infectious disease of Ophiocephalus argus occurred in a fishery in Hubei Province,China,with an incidence of 60%~70% and a mortality as high as 100%.The diseased fish showed an enlarged abdomen,the millet-like nodules in internal organs,and the swollen kidney which was composed of 5~10 sarcoma-like bodies in cream or gray-white colour or ulcerated into beandregs-like substance.Light microscopic observation revealed the basophilic or acidphilic inclusions in cytoplasm of the cells and the granulomas,a diffusive chronic inflammation in internal organs.Further analysis under an electron microscope indicated that the intracytoplasmic inclusions were rickettsia-like organisms (RLOs) that are either spherical or coccoid,with variable size,ranging from 0.5~1.5 μm in diameter,and enclosed within membrane-bound cytoplasmic vacuoles.RLO had a central nucleoid region with some fine filamentous structures and an electron-dense granule.Its cytoplasm contained abundant ribosomal bodies.Occasionally,RLO appeared to be divided by binary fission.RLOs were also observed in the homogenized tissue of infected fish.The results suggested that the death of cultured O.Argus was caused by RLO infection.

  12. Pastoralist-predator interaction at the roof of the world: Conflict dynamics and implications for conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaffar Ud. Din

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Pastoralism and predation are two major concomitantly known facts and matters of concern for conservation biologists worldwide. Pastoralist-predator conflict constitutes a major social-ecological concern in the Pamir mountain range encompassing Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Tajikistan, and affects community attitudes and tolerance toward carnivores. Very few studies have been conducted to understand the dynamics of livestock predation by large carnivores like snow leopards (Panthera uncia and wolves (Canis lupus, owing to the region's remoteness and inaccessibility. This study attempts to assess the intensity of livestock predation (and resulting perceptions by snow leopards and wolves across the Afghani, Pakistani, and Tajik Pamir range during the period January 2008-June 2012. The study found that livestock mortality due to disease is the most serious threat to livestock (an average 3.5 animal heads per household per year and ultimately to the rural economy (an average of US$352 per household per year as compared to predation (1.78 animal heads per household per year, US$191 in the three study sites. Overall, 1419 (315 per year heads of livestock were reportedly killed by snow leopards (47% and wolves (53% in the study sites. People with comparatively smaller landholdings and limited earning options, other than livestock rearing, expressed negative attitudes toward both wolves and snow leopards and vice versa. Education was found to be an effective solution to dilute people's hatred for predators. Low public tolerance of the wolf and snow leopard in general explained the magnitude of the threat facing predators in the Pamirs. This will likely continue unless tangible and informed conservation measures like disease control and predation compensation programs are taken among others.

  13. Animal behaviour and algal camouflage jointly structure predation and selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Start, Denon

    2018-05-01

    Trait variation can structure interactions between individuals, thus shaping selection. Although antipredator strategies are an important component of many aquatic systems, how multiple antipredator traits interact to influence consumption and selection remains contentious. Here, I use a common larval dragonfly (Epitheca canis) and its predator (Anax junius) to test for the joint effects of activity rate and algal camouflage on predation and survival selection. I found that active and poorly camouflaged Epitheca were more likely to be consumed, and thus, survival selection favoured inactive and well-camouflaged individuals. Notably, camouflage dampened selection on activity rate, likely by reducing attack rates when Epitheca encountered a predator. Correlational selection is therefore conferred by the ecological interaction of traits, rather than by opposing selection acting on linked traits. I suggest that antipredator traits with different adaptive functions can jointly structure patterns of consumption and selection. © 2018 European Society For Evolutionary Biology. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2018 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  14. Exploring crowded trophic niche space in a novel reservoir fish assemblage: how many predators is too many?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winters, Lisa K.; Budy, Phaedra

    2015-01-01

    In highly managed reservoir systems, species interactions within novel fish assemblages can be difficult to predict. In high-elevation Scofield Reservoir in Utah the unintentional introduction of Utah Chub Gila atraria and subsequent population expansion prompted a shift from stocking exclusively Rainbow Trout Oncorhynchus mykiss to include tiger trout (female Brown Trout Salmo trutta × male Brook Trout Salvelinus fontinalis) and Bonneville Cutthroat Trout O. clarkii utah, which composed a novel suite of top predators and potential competitors. We examined the interspecific interactions among Scofield Reservoir piscivores using a multifaceted approach including gut analyses, stable isotopes, and gape limitation. Large Cutthroat Trout consumed 50–100% Utah Chub and tiger trout consumed 45–80%. In contrast, small and large Rainbow Trout consumed primarily invertebrate prey and exhibited significant overlap with small tiger trout, Cutthroat Trout, and Utah Chub. Large Cutthroat Trout and tiger trout occupy a top piscivore trophic niche and are more littoral, while Rainbow Trout occupy an omnivore niche space and are more pelagic. Both Cutthroat and tiger trout varied in niche space with respect to size-class, demonstrating an ontogenetic shift to piscivory at approximately 350 mm TL. Cutthroat Trout and tiger trout are capable of consuming prey up to 50% of their own size, which is larger than predicted based on their theoretical gape limit. Because it appears food resources (Utah Chub) are not limited, and performance metrics are high, competition is unlikely between Cutthroat Trout and tiger trout. In contrast, apparent survival of Rainbow Trout has recently declined significantly, potentially due to shared food resources with Utah Chub or negative behavioral interactions with other members of the community. Collectively, this research aids in understanding biotic interactions within a top-heavy and novel fish community and assists towards developing

  15. Structure-forming corals and sponges and their use as fish habitat in Bering Sea submarine canyons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Robert J; Hocevar, John; Stone, Robert P; Fedorov, Dmitry V

    2012-01-01

    Continental margins are dynamic, heterogeneous settings that can include canyons, seamounts, and banks. Two of the largest canyons in the world, Zhemchug and Pribilof, cut into the edge of the continental shelf in the southeastern Bering Sea. Here currents and upwelling interact to produce a highly productive area, termed the Green Belt, that supports an abundance of fishes and squids as well as birds and marine mammals. We show that in some areas the floor of these canyons harbors high densities of gorgonian and pennatulacean corals and sponges, likely due to enhanced surface productivity, benthic currents and seafloor topography. Rockfishes, including the commercially important Pacific ocean perch, Sebastes alutus, were associated with corals and sponges as well as with isolated boulders. Sculpins, poachers and pleuronectid flounders were also associated with corals in Pribilof Canyon, where corals were most abundant. Fishes likely use corals and sponges as sources of vertical relief, which may harbor prey as well as provide shelter from predators. Boulders may be equivalent habitat in this regard, but are sparse in the canyons, strongly suggesting that biogenic structure is important fish habitat. Evidence of disturbance to the benthos from fishing activities was observed in these remote canyons. Bottom trawling and other benthic fishing gear has been shown to damage corals and sponges that may be very slow to recover from such disturbance. Regulation of these destructive practices is key to conservation of benthic habitats in these canyons and the ecosystem services they provide.

  16. Competition and Facilitation between a Disease and a Predator in a Stunted Prey Population.

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    Maarten C Boerlijst

    Full Text Available The role of diseases and parasites has received relatively little attention in modelling ecological dynamics despite mounting evidence of their importance in structuring communities. In contrast to predators, parasites do not necessarily kill their host but instead they may change host life history. Here, we study the impact of a parasite that selectively infects juvenile prey individuals and prevents them from maturing into adults. The model is inspired by the Ligula intestinalis tape worm and its cyprinid fish host Rutilis rutilis. We demonstrate that the parasite can promote as well as demote the so-called stunting in its host population, that is, the accumulation of juvenile prey, which leads to strong exploitation competition and consequently to a bottleneck in maturation. If competition between infected and uninfected individuals is strong, stunting will be enhanced and bistability between a stunted and non-stunted prey population occurs. In this case, the disease competes with the predator of its host species, possibly leading to predator extinction. In contrast, if the competition between infected and uninfected individuals is weak, the stunting is relieved, and epi-zoonoti