Feeding ecology of King George whiting Sillaginodes punctatus (Perciformes) recruits in seagrass and unvegetated habitats. Does diet reflect habitat utilization?
GP Jenkins, A Syme, PI Macreadie
JOURNAL OF FISH BIOLOGY | WILEY-BLACKWELL | Published : 2011
This study investigated the feeding ecology of King George whiting Sillaginodes punctatus recruits to determine how diet composition varies between habitat types (seagrass and unvegetated habitats), and between sites separated by distance. Broad-scale sampling of seagrass and unvegetated habitats at nine sites in Port Phillip Bay (Australia) indicated the diet composition varied more by distance into the bay than by habitat. Near the entrance to the bay the diet was dominated by harpacticoids and gammarid amphipods, in the middle reaches of the bay the diet was completely dominated by harpacticoids, while at sites furthest into the bay, mysids and crab zoea were also important. Abundances of..View full abstract
We wish to thank P. Hamer and J. Hindell for assistance with fieldwork. We thank G. Walker-Smith for her assistance in culturing harpacticoids. Comments on the manuscript from G. Edgar, G. Parry and three anonymous reviewers were most appreciated. This study was funded by the Australian Research Council. All research was conducted under University of Melbourne Animal Ethics and DPI Fisheries permits.