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Foraging performance of juvenile cod (Gadus morhua) and profitability of coastal habitats

Persson, Anders LU ; Ljungberg, Peter LU ; Andersson, Magnus; Götzman, Elin and Nilsson, Anders LU (2012) In Marine Ecology - Progress Series 456. p.245-253
Abstract
Overfishing and eutrophication affects coastal communities worldwide, leading to dwindling fish stocks and deteriorated habitats. Hence, attempts to rebuild overfished stocks to past fish productivities need to account for functional relations between habitat types and fish performance. Here we quantify resource availability, foraging performance and anti-predator behaviour of juvenile Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) to assess the costs and benefits associated with different coastal habitats. In the laboratory, Atlantic cod foraged more efficiently in sand habitats compared to the structurally more complex habitats of eelgrass (Zostera marina) and the canopy forming bladderwrack (Fucus vesicolosus). Presence of chemical cues from a cannibal... (More)
Overfishing and eutrophication affects coastal communities worldwide, leading to dwindling fish stocks and deteriorated habitats. Hence, attempts to rebuild overfished stocks to past fish productivities need to account for functional relations between habitat types and fish performance. Here we quantify resource availability, foraging performance and anti-predator behaviour of juvenile Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) to assess the costs and benefits associated with different coastal habitats. In the laboratory, Atlantic cod foraged more efficiently in sand habitats compared to the structurally more complex habitats of eelgrass (Zostera marina) and the canopy forming bladderwrack (Fucus vesicolosus). Presence of chemical cues from a cannibal reduced Atlantic cod consumption rates in all habitats, but most pronounced in the sand habitat. Field observations in the three habitats showed highest resource density in the bladderwrack habitat and lowest in the sand habitat, irrespective of season. Habitat profitability, calculated by combining data from field estimates of prey density and experimental quantifications of foraging performance, revealed the bladderwrack habitat most profitable independent of season. The difference in profitability between the complex habitats was relatively small, suggesting that Atlantic cod in the field contributed to drive habitat profitability towards equalization. The results strengthen the view that the ongoing loss of seagrass and macroalgae habitats may have significant ramifications for juvenile Atlantic cod performance, which ultimately may lower the productivity of entire stocks. Consequently, future and ongoing rebuilding of commercial fish stocks should revise the expectations of stock productivity (and hence harvesting intensity) accordingly. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Habitat choice, Cod, Macroinvertebrates, Functional response, Seagrass, Bladder wrack, Fucus vesicolosus, Zostera marina
in
Marine Ecology - Progress Series
volume
456
pages
245 - 253
publisher
Inter-Research
external identifiers
  • wos:000304914500021
  • scopus:84862224641
ISSN
1616-1599
DOI
10.3354/meps09705
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
94ac0aef-138f-423e-82da-90a3e955831c (old id 2373561)
date added to LUP
2012-05-08 09:49:45
date last changed
2017-01-22 03:00:27
@article{94ac0aef-138f-423e-82da-90a3e955831c,
  abstract     = {Overfishing and eutrophication affects coastal communities worldwide, leading to dwindling fish stocks and deteriorated habitats. Hence, attempts to rebuild overfished stocks to past fish productivities need to account for functional relations between habitat types and fish performance. Here we quantify resource availability, foraging performance and anti-predator behaviour of juvenile Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) to assess the costs and benefits associated with different coastal habitats. In the laboratory, Atlantic cod foraged more efficiently in sand habitats compared to the structurally more complex habitats of eelgrass (Zostera marina) and the canopy forming bladderwrack (Fucus vesicolosus). Presence of chemical cues from a cannibal reduced Atlantic cod consumption rates in all habitats, but most pronounced in the sand habitat. Field observations in the three habitats showed highest resource density in the bladderwrack habitat and lowest in the sand habitat, irrespective of season. Habitat profitability, calculated by combining data from field estimates of prey density and experimental quantifications of foraging performance, revealed the bladderwrack habitat most profitable independent of season. The difference in profitability between the complex habitats was relatively small, suggesting that Atlantic cod in the field contributed to drive habitat profitability towards equalization. The results strengthen the view that the ongoing loss of seagrass and macroalgae habitats may have significant ramifications for juvenile Atlantic cod performance, which ultimately may lower the productivity of entire stocks. Consequently, future and ongoing rebuilding of commercial fish stocks should revise the expectations of stock productivity (and hence harvesting intensity) accordingly.},
  author       = {Persson, Anders and Ljungberg, Peter and Andersson, Magnus and Götzman, Elin and Nilsson, Anders},
  issn         = {1616-1599},
  keyword      = {Habitat choice,Cod,Macroinvertebrates,Functional response,Seagrass,Bladder wrack,Fucus vesicolosus,Zostera marina},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {245--253},
  publisher    = {Inter-Research},
  series       = {Marine Ecology - Progress Series},
  title        = {Foraging performance of juvenile cod (Gadus morhua) and profitability of coastal habitats},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.3354/meps09705},
  volume       = {456},
  year         = {2012},
}