Environmental Biology of Fishes

, Volume 72, Issue 2, pp 155–160

Shoaling behaviour of sticklebacks infected with the microsporidian parasite, Glugea anomala

Authors

    • University of Leeds
    • Department of BiologyUniversity of Leicester
  • Alison J. Duff
    • University of Leeds
  • Jens Krause
    • University of Leeds
  • Iain Barber
    • Institute of Biological SciencesUniversity of Wales Aberystwyth
Article

DOI: 10.1007/s10641-004-9078-1

Cite this article as:
Ward, A.J.W., Duff, A.J., Krause, J. et al. Environ Biol Fish (2005) 72: 155. doi:10.1007/s10641-004-9078-1

Abstract

We compared the shoaling behaviour of three-spined sticklebacks, Gasterosteus aculeatus, infected with the microsporidian, Glugea anomala, to that of non-infected conspecifics. Infected fish lost significantly more weight than non-infected fish during a period of food deprivation, suggesting a metabolic cost to parasitism. In binary shoal choice tests, non-infected test fish showed an association preference for a shoal of non-infected over a shoal of infected conspecifics; infected test fish displayed no preference. Infected fish, however, showed a higher overall tendency to shoal than non-parasitised fish. Furthermore, infected fish occupied front positions within a mixed school. We consider the behavioural differences between infected and uninfected fish in the context of their potential benefits to the fish hosts and the parasites.

Keywords

Gasterosteus aculeatusschoolingparasitesenergetics

Copyright information

© Springer 2005