We studied food habits of white perch (Morone americana) from two populations with different stable states (stunted [Branched Oak Lake, Nebraska] and nonstunted [Pawnee Lake, Nebraska]) to determine if change in food habits of white perch is likely to occur in situations where a stunted white perch population is altered to a nonstunted state and vice versa. Three approaches were used to quantitatively describe seasonal (spring = March-May, summer = June-August, autumn = September-November) diets of white perch - 1) frequency of occurrence, 2) percentage of composition by volume, and 3) mean stomach fullness. White perch diets were dominated by cladocerans and dipterans in both reservoirs during all seasons. Fish egg predation was similar between reservoirs, and white perch rarely consumed fishes in either the stunted or the non-stunted population. Shifting a white perch population between stunted and non-stunted states will likely cause little or no change in food habits; fish in both states will primarily consume invertebrates.
Additional Publication Details
Food habits of stunted and non-stunted white perch (Morone americana)