, Volume 493, Issue 1-3, pp 27-34

Resource–consumer relationships in Lake Victoria, East Africa

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Abstract

Resource–consumer relationships in Lake Victoria were investigated by use of stable isotope data. δ13C and δ15N signatures were determined for organisms at a deep (22 m) and a littoral (5 m) site in the Napoleon Gulf near Jinja, Uganda. Results suggest that two food chains operate at the deep site, one leading from a shrimp (Caridina nilotica) to juvenile Nile perch (Lates niloticus), the second leading from zooplankton (copepods and cladocerans) to a cyprinid (Rastrineobola argentea) and lake flies (Chaoborus). Isotopic evidence suggests that shrimp eat suspended particulates and benthos, not crustacean zooplankton or water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes). Resource–consumer relationships revealed in this study have implications for understanding future yields of the economically important Nile perch fishery.