Fourteen Alle alle (Dovekie) were recovered from the stomachs of 14 Lophius americanus (Goosefish) caught during winter and spring 2007–2010. All fish were caught in gill nets set at depths of 85–151 m (276–491 ft) 104–150 km (65–94 mi) south of Chatham, MA. Dovekies showed few signs of digestion by the fish, indicating recent capture. Post mortem revealed no cause of mortality. Capture of birds by fish so far from shore and in deep water leads to speculation that the birds were preyed on by Goosefish at or near the surface. Evidence from electronic tagging of Goosefish suggests that Goosefish vertical migrations could bring them into contact with Dovekies feeding offshore. If Goosefish are concentrated during onshore-offshore migrations and Dovekies are concentrated for feeding on prey patches, predation by Goosefish on Dovekies could be episodically important.
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Vol. 20 • No. 1