Article

Environmental Biology of Fishes

, Volume 97, Issue 3, pp 277-283

Presettlement schooling behaviour of a priacanthid, the Purplespotted Bigeye Priacanthus tayenus (Priacanthidae: Teleostei)

  • Julia Santana-GarconAffiliated withThe School of Plant Biology and UWA Oceans Institute (M470), Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, The University of Western Australia Email author 
  • , Jeffrey M. LeisAffiliated withDepartment of Ichthyology, Australian MuseumInstitute for Marine and Antarctic Studies, University of Tasmania
  • , Stephen J. NewmanAffiliated withWestern Australian Fisheries and Marine Research Laboratories, Department of Fisheries, Government of Western Australia
  • , Euan S. HarveyAffiliated withThe School of Plant Biology and UWA Oceans Institute (M470), Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, The University of Western Australia

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Abstract

We report in situ behavioural observations of presettlement schooling in Priacanthus tayenus off Coral Bay, Western Australia collected using pelagic Baited Remote Underwater stereo-Video systems. Two groups of fish (8 and 9 individuals) were observed that aggregated into a single school. Mean total length was 24.1 mm (12.5–30.2 mm). The fish swam at a mean speed of 8.5 cm s−1 in a group spacing themselves more or less evenly at a distance of around one body length from the nearest neighbour within the school. P. tayenus appeared to be sometimes associated with juveniles of other species. The results presented here add to the limited, but growing body of literature on the schooling behaviour of the early pelagic stages of demersal fishes.

Keywords

Pelagic juvenile reef fish Mid-water baited remote underwater stereo-video Demersal fish Ningaloo Reef Western Australia