How to translate text using browser tools
1 September 2011 Behavioral Observations of Lilliputian Piscivores: Young-of-Year Sphyraena barracuda at Offshore Sub-Tropical Reefs (NW Atlantic Ocean)
Peter J. Auster, David Grenda, Jeff Godfrey, Eric Heupel, Steven Auscavitch, Joseph Mangiafico
Author Affiliations +
Abstract

Direct observations were made in June 2009 and 2010 of newly recruited young-of-year (YOY) Sphyraena barracuda (Great Barracuda; 50–80 mm total length) occuring on “live bottom” sub-tropical reefs off the southeast US at depths of 18–25 m. Counts of YOY fish from roving diver surveys along multiple reefs with under-cut ledges ranged from 0–122 individuals, indicating patchy distributions at the scale of individual reefs. Individual fish occured in groups of 2–20 , primarily along the undercut side of ledges, where dense schools of Haemulon aurolineatum (Tomtate), Decapterus punctatus (Round Scad), Decapterus macarellus (Mackeral Scad), Stenotomus chrysops (Scup), and Atherinid sp. (silverside) were concentrated. Groups of YOY Great Barracuda attacked, captured and consumed YOY Tomtate and Silverside that occured in schools in the water column adjacent to (just above the sediment-water interface) and directly above the undercut edge of the reefs. Prey reacted during attacks by reducing nearest neighbor distances and retreating to the reef edge, where they were subsequently attacked by the demersal piscivores Centropristis striata (Black Sea Bass), Centropristis ocyurus (Bank Sea Bass), and Mycteroperca phenax (Scamp Grouper). That groups of YOY piscivores, at sizes close to settlement, can assume such a functional role in regards to driving such species interactions suggests greater attention should be given to the roles played by the wider diversity of YOY piscivores recruiting to reef communities.

Peter J. Auster, David Grenda, Jeff Godfrey, Eric Heupel, Steven Auscavitch, and Joseph Mangiafico "Behavioral Observations of Lilliputian Piscivores: Young-of-Year Sphyraena barracuda at Offshore Sub-Tropical Reefs (NW Atlantic Ocean)," Southeastern Naturalist 10(3), 563-569, (1 September 2011). https://doi.org/10.1656/058.010.0318
Published: 1 September 2011
RIGHTS & PERMISSIONS
Get copyright permission
Back to Top