The effects of turbidity on prey consumption and selection of zooplanktivorous Gasterosteus aculeatus L.

Laura Kristiina Helenius, Janica Borg, Leena Nurminen, Elina Leskinen, Hannu Lehtonen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

It is well documented that reduced visibility caused by elevated turbidity can affect feeding of fish, yet the extent to which selective zooplanktivory is altered in turbid conditions remains ambiguous. In this study, we examined the influence of natural sediment-induced turbidity on the overall prey consumption and selective predation of a common brackish water littoral zooplanktivore, the particulate feeding three-spined stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus L.). We hypothesized that the effects of turbidity on prey consumption and prey type selection would be pronounced due to the vision-oriented feeding of this species and that these effects would differ between genders. Using aquarium experiments with three different groups of cladocerans and copepods varying in size and behavior, we studied prey consumption and selectivity of this key planktivore in varying turbidity treatments. Our results indicated significantly decreased total prey consumption in the high turbidity treatments, as well as altered selective feeding on copepods and an enhanced preference for larger cladocerans. We found gender-dependent differences in prey consumption, which are consistent with observations of other visually feeding fish with sexual size dimorphism. We conclude that high turbidity, such as that occurring in shallow coastal areas, may affect selective feeding in vision-oriented zooplanktivores and that these effects may be gender-related.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAquatic Ecology
Volume47
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)349-356
Number of pages8
ISSN1386-2588
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 14 Aug 2013
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Fields of Science

  • 1181 Ecology, evolutionary biology
  • Feeding strategy
  • Gasterosteus aculeatus
  • Prey selectivity
  • Turbidity
  • Zooplankton

Cite this

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title = "The effects of turbidity on prey consumption and selection of zooplanktivorous Gasterosteus aculeatus L.",
abstract = "It is well documented that reduced visibility caused by elevated turbidity can affect feeding of fish, yet the extent to which selective zooplanktivory is altered in turbid conditions remains ambiguous. In this study, we examined the influence of natural sediment-induced turbidity on the overall prey consumption and selective predation of a common brackish water littoral zooplanktivore, the particulate feeding three-spined stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus L.). We hypothesized that the effects of turbidity on prey consumption and prey type selection would be pronounced due to the vision-oriented feeding of this species and that these effects would differ between genders. Using aquarium experiments with three different groups of cladocerans and copepods varying in size and behavior, we studied prey consumption and selectivity of this key planktivore in varying turbidity treatments. Our results indicated significantly decreased total prey consumption in the high turbidity treatments, as well as altered selective feeding on copepods and an enhanced preference for larger cladocerans. We found gender-dependent differences in prey consumption, which are consistent with observations of other visually feeding fish with sexual size dimorphism. We conclude that high turbidity, such as that occurring in shallow coastal areas, may affect selective feeding in vision-oriented zooplanktivores and that these effects may be gender-related.",
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The effects of turbidity on prey consumption and selection of zooplanktivorous Gasterosteus aculeatus L. / Helenius, Laura Kristiina; Borg, Janica; Nurminen, Leena; Leskinen, Elina; Lehtonen, Hannu.

In: Aquatic Ecology, Vol. 47, No. 3, 14.08.2013, p. 349-356.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - The effects of turbidity on prey consumption and selection of zooplanktivorous Gasterosteus aculeatus L.

AU - Helenius, Laura Kristiina

AU - Borg, Janica

AU - Nurminen, Leena

AU - Leskinen, Elina

AU - Lehtonen, Hannu

PY - 2013/8/14

Y1 - 2013/8/14

N2 - It is well documented that reduced visibility caused by elevated turbidity can affect feeding of fish, yet the extent to which selective zooplanktivory is altered in turbid conditions remains ambiguous. In this study, we examined the influence of natural sediment-induced turbidity on the overall prey consumption and selective predation of a common brackish water littoral zooplanktivore, the particulate feeding three-spined stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus L.). We hypothesized that the effects of turbidity on prey consumption and prey type selection would be pronounced due to the vision-oriented feeding of this species and that these effects would differ between genders. Using aquarium experiments with three different groups of cladocerans and copepods varying in size and behavior, we studied prey consumption and selectivity of this key planktivore in varying turbidity treatments. Our results indicated significantly decreased total prey consumption in the high turbidity treatments, as well as altered selective feeding on copepods and an enhanced preference for larger cladocerans. We found gender-dependent differences in prey consumption, which are consistent with observations of other visually feeding fish with sexual size dimorphism. We conclude that high turbidity, such as that occurring in shallow coastal areas, may affect selective feeding in vision-oriented zooplanktivores and that these effects may be gender-related.

AB - It is well documented that reduced visibility caused by elevated turbidity can affect feeding of fish, yet the extent to which selective zooplanktivory is altered in turbid conditions remains ambiguous. In this study, we examined the influence of natural sediment-induced turbidity on the overall prey consumption and selective predation of a common brackish water littoral zooplanktivore, the particulate feeding three-spined stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus L.). We hypothesized that the effects of turbidity on prey consumption and prey type selection would be pronounced due to the vision-oriented feeding of this species and that these effects would differ between genders. Using aquarium experiments with three different groups of cladocerans and copepods varying in size and behavior, we studied prey consumption and selectivity of this key planktivore in varying turbidity treatments. Our results indicated significantly decreased total prey consumption in the high turbidity treatments, as well as altered selective feeding on copepods and an enhanced preference for larger cladocerans. We found gender-dependent differences in prey consumption, which are consistent with observations of other visually feeding fish with sexual size dimorphism. We conclude that high turbidity, such as that occurring in shallow coastal areas, may affect selective feeding in vision-oriented zooplanktivores and that these effects may be gender-related.

KW - 1181 Ecology, evolutionary biology

KW - Feeding strategy

KW - Gasterosteus aculeatus

KW - Prey selectivity

KW - Turbidity

KW - Zooplankton

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