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Fisheries Behavioral Ecology - Abstracts

Hurst, T.P. 2004. Temperature and state-dependence of feeding and gastric evacuation in juvenile Pacific halibut. Journal of Fish Biology 65:157–169.


Relationships between nutritional state, behavioural response to prey and gastric evacuation rates were examined in juvenile Pacific halibut Hippoglossus stenolepis feeding on squid. Pacific halibut reared at 2, 6 and 10° C were fasted for 1 or 7 days to generate variation in energetic state. The 7 day fast resulted in measurable declines in condition indices at 10 and 6° C but not at 2° C. At 10° C, all Pacific halibut consumed the first meal offered, but fish previously fasted for 7 days took significantly longer to locate and consume the meal than fish fasted for only 1 day. At 2° C, Pacific halibut fasted for 7 days did not generally consume the first meal offered, but resumed feeding 2.1 days sooner, on average, than fish fasted for only 1 day. The gastric evacuation rate of the squid meal was best described by a power model with near-exponential curvature (a = 1.011). The evacuation rate was strongly temperature-dependent (Q10 = 3.65) but displayed the same degree of variability at each temperature. The evacuation rate in Pacific halibut was not affected by feeding history, body size or energetic state. Furthermore, individual variation in gastric evacuation rate was not correlated with feeding responsiveness at any temperature. These results indicate a general plasticity in the behavioural but not physiological aspects of energy acquisition.


Last updated 30 March, 2009

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