2-3 Estuarine Nekton

2-3 Estuarine Nekton - Estuarine Nekton Chapter 8 ESTUARINE...

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Estuarine Nekton Chapter 8
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ESTUARINE NEKTON High estuarine 1 o leads to a high biomass and productivity of nekton Many commercially important fisheries Includes fish (1 st in species diversity and biomass), crustaceans (crabs and shrimp), cephalopods and mammals
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How to categorize nekton: 1) Morphology may reveal feeding strategy of estuarine fishes: mouth position intestine length pharynx teeth gill rakers bony or cartilaginous projections from the anterior edges of the gill arches
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Figure 10.8 Adaptions for feeding: (a) Position and size of mouth; (b) Variation in pharygal dentation in feeding; (c) Variation in gill rakers for plankton feeding; (d) Changes in intestinal shape and
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Pharyngeal teeth What does a sheepshead eat? Hint: it lives in coastal areas of the GOM
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2) Specific habitats in the estuary Littoral - marsh, tidepools Mostly < 10 cm and estuarine throughout life Fundulus heteroclitus
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Pelagic fishes Swim freely; often migrate and generally consume plankton menhaden, anchovies
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Bottom/demersal Live near or on bottom flatfish, drums (spot, croaker, seatrout, red drum), catfish benthic feeders In drums, ontogenetic feeding shifts are common Drums often live in large monospecific schools
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3) Life histories in estuaries: Some are occasional visitors Many species utilize estuaries at specific life history stages and migration patterns differ:
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Estuarine-resident spawners Entire life history in estuary Fundulus and Palaemonetes pugio (grass shrimp) Small body size but important in food web as prey Grass shrimp
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Estuarine-marine species (salt-water spawners) Eggs, larvae or juveniles enter estuaries by coastal currents
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This note was uploaded on 09/13/2010 for the course BIOL 4262 taught by Professor Stickle during the Spring '10 term at LSU.

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2-3 Estuarine Nekton - Estuarine Nekton Chapter 8 ESTUARINE...

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