Diet of two icefish species from the South Shetland Islands and Elephant Island, Champsocephalus gunnari and Chaenocephal;us aceratus

A.P. Florentino De Souza Silva, K.H. Kock, S. Wilhelms, C.D. Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The summer diet of two species of icefishes (Channichthyidae) from the South Shetland Islands and Elephant Island, Champsocephalus gunnari and Chaenocephalus aceratus, was investigated from 2001 to 2003. Champsocephalus gunnari fed almost exclusively on krill (Euphausia superba) in all years. The importance of other taxa (Themisto gaudichaudii, mysids, myctophids) in the diet was negligible. The average feeding rate of Champsocephalus gunnari inferred from an exponential gastric evacuation model was between 1.0 and 1.5% body weight per day. Most of the stomachs of Chaenocephalus aceratus were empty. Stomachs with food contained mainly krill, mysids and fish. Among the fish taken, locally abundant species formed the bulk of the diet: Gobionotothen gibberifrons in 2001, Lepidonotothen larseni and Champsocephalus gunnari in 2002 and L. larseni in 2003. An ontogenetic shift in feeding preference of Chaenocephalus aceratus was observed: fish smaller than 30 cm fed on krill and mysids, while larger animals relied primarily on fish.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)119-129
JournalPolar Biology
Volume27
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2004

Keywords

  • gastric evacuation
  • notothenioid fish
  • mackerel icefish
  • antarctic peninsula
  • food-consumption
  • stomach contents
  • demersal fish
  • life-cycle
  • georgia
  • temperature

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