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Fisheries Behavioral Ecology - Abstracts

Olla, B.L., M.W. Davis, C.H. Ryer, and S.M. Sogard. 1996. Behavioural determinants of distribution and survival in early stages of walleye pollock, Theragra chalcogramma: a synthesis of experimental studies. Fisheries Oceanography 5(Suppl. 1):167-178.


This review summarizes results of an extensive series of laboratory studies on the behavioural responses of early life stages of walleye pollock, Theragra chalcogramma to key environmental factors including light, temperature, gravity, turbulence, food availability and predator presence. Experiments focused on vertical distribution of egg through O-age stages, and social interactions of age-O juveniles. Key factors were modified either singly or in concert to determine their direct and indirect influence on fish behaviour. The observed results suggest that the behaviour of individual fish depends on the integration of a continually changing hierarchy of both intrinsic and extrinsic factors, with the relative importance of a specific factor varying with ontogeny and over time and space. The broad range of responses displayed by early life stages suggests that behaviour plays an important role in determining the consequences of environmental variability on walleye pollock populations. In general, results from our laboratory experiments are consistent with patterns observed in field studies, supporting the efficacy of using experimental behavioural research to define some of the underlying mechanisms controlling distribution and survival in the field, and eventual recruitment to adult populations.


Last updated 30 March, 2009

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