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How often do fishes "run on empty"?

Ecology

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Abstract

We used a large data set of African, Neotropical, and North American fishes to examine the frequency with which fishes have empty stomachs (nspecies = 254; nindividuals = 36875). Mean percentage of empty stomachs was low across all fishes (16.2 ?? 1.2%) but varied from 0% to 79.4% among individual species. Nocturnal fishes had empty stomachs more frequently than diurnal fishes. Trophic classification was strongly associated with the percentage of empty stomachs, a pattern also revealed from an intraspecific analysis. Fishes appear to adjust their feeding intervals relative to the energy density, conversion efficiency, and particle size of their food. Piscivorous fishes seem to be the only trophic group that regularly experience long periods of empty stomachs, with species that consume prey whole and those that provide extended parental care having the highest proportions of empty stomachs. Activity patterns and life histories of some piscivorous species probably have evolved in partial response to energetic benefits of large, energy-rich food resources.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
How often do fishes "run on empty"?
Series title:
Ecology
Volume
83
Issue:
8
Year Published:
2002
Language:
English
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
Ecology
First page:
2145
Last page:
2151
Number of Pages:
7