Benefits of heterospecific foraging by the Caribbean wrasse, Halichoeres garnoti (Pisces: Labridae)

  • Richard B. Aronson
  • S. Laurie Sanderson
Article

Synopsis

Terminal-phase yellowhead wrasses, Halichoeres garnoti, foraged alone or in association with foraging goatfish, Pseudupeneus maculatus and Mulloides martinicus. Whereas H. garnoti did not dig for benthic infauna, the goatfish foraged almost exclusively on and in sand substrata. Wrasses in the company of goatfish made significantly more strikes on sand substrata than did solitary wrasses, although there were no significant differences in the frequency of strikes on sand and hard substrata combined. The frequencies of other behaviors (searches, scratches, flights, chases, rests, yawns, and cleanings) were not significantly different between solitary and associated wrasses. H. garnoti are attracted to foraging goatfish, which provide access to an otherwise unavailable food resource.

Keywords

Behavior Fishes Mixed-species groups Mullidae 

References cited

  1. Barlow, G.W. 1974. Extraspecific imposition of social grouping among surgeonfishes (Pisces: Acanthuridae). J. ZooL, Lond. 174: 333–340.Google Scholar
  2. Barnard, C.J. & D.B.A. Thompson. 1985. Gulls and plovers: the ecology and behaviour of mixed-species feeding groups. Columbia University Press, New York. 302 pp.Google Scholar
  3. Berner, T.O. & T.C. Grubb, Jr. 1985. An experimental analysis of mixed-species flocking in birds of deciduous woodland. Ecology 66: 1229–1236.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Collette, B.B. & S.A. Earle (ed.) 1972. Results of the Tektite program: ecology of coral reef fishes. Nat. Hist. Mus. L.A. City Sci. Bull. 14. 179 pp.Google Scholar
  5. Dubin, R.E. 1982. Behavioral interactions between Caribbean reef fish and eels (Muraenidae and Ophichthidae). Copeia 1982: 229–232.Google Scholar
  6. Foster, S.A. 1985. Group foraging by a coral reef fish: a mechanism for gaining access to defended resources. Anim. Behav. 33: 782–792.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Fricke, H.W. 1975. The role of behaviour in marine symbiotic animals. pp. 581–594. In: D.H. Jennings & D.L. Lee(ed.) Symbiosis, Symposia of the Society for Experimental Biology 29, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.Google Scholar
  8. Gosline, W.A. 1984. Structure, function, and ecology in the goatfishes (family Mullidae). Pac. Sci. 38: 312–323.Google Scholar
  9. Hobson, E.S. 1974. Feeding relationships of teleostean fishes on coral reefs in Kona, Hawaii. U.S. Fish. Bull. 72: 915–1031.Google Scholar
  10. Itzkowitz, M. 1977. Social dynamics of mixed-species groups of Jamaican reef fishes. Behav. Ecol. Sociobiol. 2: 361–384.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Karplus, I. 1978. A feeding association between the grouper Epinephelus fasciatus and the moray eel Gymnothorax griseus. Copeia 1978: 164.Google Scholar
  12. Kaufman, L.S. & J.P. Ebersole. 1984. Microtopography and the organization of two assemblages of coral reef fishes in the West Indies. J. Exp. Mar. Biol. Ecol. 78: 253–268.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Kaufman, L.S. & K.F. Liem. 1982. Fishes of the suborder Labroidei (Pisces: Perciformes): phylogeny, ecology, and evolutionary significance. Brevoira 472. 19 pp.Google Scholar
  14. McNaughton, S.J. 1984. Grazing lawns: animals in herds, plant form, and coevolution. Amer. Nat. 124: 863–886.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Montgomery, W.L. 1981. Mixed-species schools and the significance of vertical territories of damselfishes. Copeia 1981: 477–481.Google Scholar
  16. Morse, D.H. 1977. Feeding behavior and predator avoidance in heterospecific groups. BioScience 27: 332–339.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Ormond, R.F.G. 1980. Aggressive mimicry and other interspecific feeding associations among Red Sea coral reef predators. J. Zool., Lond. 191: 247–262.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Randall, J.E. 1967. Food habits of reef fishes of the West Indies. Stud. Trop. Oceanogr. Miami 5: 665–847.Google Scholar
  19. Randall, J.E. 1983. Caribbean reef fishes, revised ed. T.F.H. Publications, Neptune City. 350 pp.Google Scholar
  20. Randall, J.E., S.M. Head & A.P.L. Sanders. 1978. Food habits of the giant humphead wrasse, Cheilinus undulatus (Labridae). Env. Biol. Fish. 3: 235–238.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Reinthal, P.N. & S.M. Lewis. 1986. Social behaviour, foraging efficiency and habitat utilization in a group of tropical herbivorous fish. Anim. Behav. (in press).Google Scholar
  22. Robertson, D.R., H.P.A. Sweatman, E.A. Fletcher & M.G. Cleland. 1976. Schooling as a mechanism for circumventing the territoriality of competitors. Ecology 57: 1208–1220.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Smith, C.L. & J.C. Tyler. 1972. Space resource sharing in a coral reef fish community. pp. 125–178. In: B.B. Collette & S.A. Earle (ed.) Results of the Tektite Program: Ecology of Coral Reef Fishes, Nat. Hist. Mus. L.A. City Sci. Bull. 14.Google Scholar
  24. Sokal, R.R. & F.J. Rohlf. 1969. Biometry. W.H. Freeman and Co., San Francisco. 776 pp.Google Scholar
  25. Thresher, R.E. 1979. Social behavior and ecology of two sympatric wrasses (Labridae: Halichoeres spp.) off the coast of Florida. Mar. Biol. 53: 161–172.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Wolf, N.G. 1983. Foraging ecology of herbivorous reef fishes in mixed-species groups. Amer. Zool. 23: 985.Google Scholar
  27. Wolf, N.G. 1985. Food selection and resources partitioning by herbivorous fishes in mixed-species groups. pp. 23–28. In: Proc. 5th Int. Coral Reef Cong., Tahiti, Vol. 4.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Dr W. Junk Publishers 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • Richard B. Aronson
    • 1
  • S. Laurie Sanderson
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Pure and Applied ZoologyUniversity of ReadingWhiteknightsEngland
  2. 2.Museum of Comparative ZoologyHarvard UniversityCambridgeU.S.A.

Personalised recommendations