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Altered complementary feeding strategies of the consumers Hydrobia ulvae and Idotea emarginata via passive selectivity

Aberle, N. and Malzahn, A. M. and Grey, Jonathan and Hillebrand, H. and Wiltshire, K. H. (2009) Altered complementary feeding strategies of the consumers Hydrobia ulvae and Idotea emarginata via passive selectivity. Helgoland Marine Research, 63 (3). pp. 189-197. ISSN 1438-387X

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Abstract

This study aimed to identify differences in selectivity, foraging behaviour and complementary feeding of two benthic consumers (the isopod Idotea emarginata and the snail Hydrobia ulvae) using traditional cell counting as an indicator for algal biomass reduction and stable isotope labelling to detect differences in assimilation and digestion. We hypothesized that even when active feeding preferences of food components are not apparent, passive selectivity via mechanisms such as food assimilation and digestion can be of relevance. Algal biomass was reduced to a similar degree by the grazers independently from grazer and prey combinations without any indication for an active choice of food components. However, the isotope labelling approach indicated that passive selectivity can alter complementary feeding strategies, as we detected shifts in feeding preferences in relation to food quantity and competition. Thus, stable isotope labelling of food components opens up new perspectives in community ecology, allowing assessment of such complex mechanisms as passive selectivity, complementary feeding and competition.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: Helgoland Marine Research
Uncontrolled Keywords: Benthic microalgae ; Isotope fractionation ; Resource partitioning ; Microphytobenthos ; Stable isotope enrichment
Subjects:
Departments: Faculty of Science and Technology > Lancaster Environment Centre
ID Code: 74793
Deposited By: ep_importer_pure
Deposited On: 29 Jul 2015 16:02
Refereed?: Yes
Published?: Published
Last Modified: 21 Sep 2017 06:36
Identification Number:
URI: http://eprints.lancs.ac.uk/id/eprint/74793

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