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Spatial distribution and feeding habits of the shrimp Crangon uritai as a predator on larval and juvenile marbled sole Pleuronectes yokohamae

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 To examine predation on larval and juvenile Pleuronectes yokohamae by Crangon uritai, the spatial distribution and feeding habits of C. uritai were studied. Crangon uritai fed on various prey, including P. yokohamae. Density-dependent predation on juvenile Crangon spp., larval and juvenile gobiid fish Chaenogobius heptacanthus, mysids, and gammarids was observed. The abundance of alternative prey might, therefore, play an important role in reducing the pressure of predation on P. yokohamae. In each year, C. uritai migrated from depths of 10 m in March to depths of 3 m in May. There was a significant negative correlation between the weighted mean depth (WMD) of C. uritai and the weighted mean bottom water temperature (WMBWT). The migration was, therefore, delayed in the cold spring, during which C. uritai occupied depths of approximately 10 m. In contrast, no significant correlation was found between the WMD of P. yokohamae and WMBWT. Settlement of P. yokohamae began at depths of 15 m, mainly during early April. The spatial distributions of these two organisms show greater overlap during the cold spring, resulting in increased opportunities for predation.

Keywords: Crangon uritai; Pleuronectes yokohamae; bottom water temperature; predation; spatial distribution

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Graduate School of Fisheries Sciences, Hokkaido University, Hakodate, Hokkaido 041-8611 2: Hachinohe Branch, Tohoku National Fisheries Research Institute, Fisheries Research Agency, Hachinohe, Aomori 031-0841, Japan

Publication date: June 1, 2004

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