Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/2445/42021
Title: Massive consumption of gelatinous plankton by Mediterranean apex predators
Author: Cardona Pascual, Luis
Alvarez de Quevedo, Irene
Borrell Thió, Assumpció
Aguilar, Àlex
Keywords: Nutrició animal
Predació (Biologia)
Plàncton
Mediterrània (Mar)
Animal nutrition
Predation (Biology)
Plankton
Mediterranean Sea
Issue Date: Mar-2012
Publisher: Public Library of Science (PLoS)
Abstract: Stable isotopes of carbon and nitrogen were used to test the hypothesis that stomach content analysis has systematically overlooked the consumption of gelatinous zooplankton by pelagic mesopredators and apex predators. The results strongly supported a major role of gelatinous plankton in the diet of bluefin tuna (Thunnus thynnus), little tunny (Euthynnus alletteratus), spearfish (Tetrapturus belone) and swordfish (Xiphias gladius). Loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta) in the oceanic stage and ocean sunfish (Mola mola) also primarily relied on gelatinous zooplankton. In contrast, stable isotope ratios ruled out any relevant consumption of gelatinous plankton by bluefish (Pomatomus saltatrix), blue shark (Prionace glauca), leerfish (Lichia amia), bonito (Sarda sarda), striped dolphin (Stenella caerueloalba) and loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta) in the neritic stage, all of which primarily relied on fish and squid. Fin whales (Balaenoptera physalus) were confirmed as crustacean consumers. The ratios of stable isotopes in albacore (Thunnus alalunga), amberjack (Seriola dumerili), blue butterfish (Stromaeus fiatola), bullet tuna (Auxis rochei), dolphinfish (Coryphaena hyppurus), horse mackerel (Trachurus trachurus), mackerel (Scomber scombrus) and pompano (Trachinotus ovatus) were consistent with mixed diets revealed by stomach content analysis, including nekton and crustaceans, but the consumption of gelatinous plankton could not be ruled out completely. In conclusion, the jellyvorous guild in the Mediterranean integrates two specialists (ocean sunfish and loggerhead sea turtles in the oceanic stage) and several opportunists (bluefin tuna, little tunny, spearfish, swordfish and, perhaps, blue butterfish), most of them with shrinking populations due to overfishing.
Note: Reproducció del document publicat a: http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0031329
It is part of: PLoS One, 2012, vol. 7, num. 3, p. e31329
Related resource: http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0031329
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2445/42021
ISSN: 1932-6203
Appears in Collections:Articles publicats en revistes (Biologia Evolutiva, Ecologia i Ciències Ambientals)

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