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Daryl Hondorp from the University of Michigan, will be giving a seminar on Thursday, March 9 as a part of the NOAA & University of Michigan Great Lakes Seminar Series.

Please find details of his talk listed below.

Date: Thursday, March 9

Time: 1030 AM

Location: Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory, 2205 Commonwealth Blvd., Ann Arbor

Title: "Sculpin prey selection dynamics: patterns and processes"

Speaker: *Daryl Hondorp*, CILER, University of Michigan graduate student

Many characteristics of benthic fish and their prey differ from the planktivore-zooplankton model on which fish foraging theory is based, but few studies have examined prey selection in benthic fishes. In this study, species and size selection of macroinvertebrate prey was described for the benthic fish /Cottus cognatus/ and /Myoxocephalus thompsonii/ from southeast Lake Michigan. Both field and laboratory studies were employed to investigate the effects of prey species composition, abundance and behavior on prey selection by these fish. Results were consistent with the hypothesis that prey selection in /C. cognatus/ and /M. thompsonii/ is mainly a passive process wherein all prey are equally suitable but differ in vulnerability. Thus, more vulnerable prey types are preferentially consumed when predators feed opportunistically. Study results suggested that prey vulnerability for these fish was a function of prey micro-habitat use, motility, and evasiveness which influenced predator-prey encounter rates and predator capture success. Chironomids (Order: Diptera; Family: Chironomidae) were an example of a vulnerable prey type due to their spatial overlap with benthic fish and limited motility, and were preferentially consumed by /C. cognatus/. /Mysis relicta/ was considerably less vulnerable to fish predation as a result of its vertical-migrating behavior and its ability to escape from attacks by benthic predators. Prey vulnerability was mostly unaffected by prey density or fish size, although /C. cognatus/ and /M. thomposonii/ may differ in their ability to detect and capture certain prey types. Active predator choice could not be ruled out as a factor influencing the prey selection of these fish, but results from this and other studies suggest that much of the variation in prey selection by benthic fish can be explained solely by passive mechanisms.

If you have any questions or concerns, please email me at kanika.suri@noaa.gov; or call 734-741-2147.

For more information about the seminar series, please visit our website at http://www.glerl.noaa.gov/news/seminars/


Kanika Suri
Center of Excellence for Great Lakes and Human Health (CEGLHH)
2205 Commonwealth Blvd.
Ann Arbor, MI

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