Advertisement

Marine Biology

, Volume 112, Issue 2, pp 207–210 | Cite as

Dinoflagellate luminescence increases susceptibility of zooplankton to teleost predation

  • A. F. Mesinger
  • J. F. Case
Article

Abstract

The “burglar alarm” theory of bioluminescence was investigated by determining predation rates of a nocturnal teleost predator,Porichthys notatus, on nonluminescent kelp mysids illuminated by dinoflagellate flashes, between the fall and spring of 1989/1990. Mysids (Holmesimysis costata) were placed in aquaria containing varying concentrations (0 to 40 cells/ml) of the dinoflagellatePyrocystis fusiformis and a single midshipman fish. Controls usedP. fusiformis during their luminescence-inhibited day phase. Mysid swimming movements readily stimulated dinoflagellate luminescence. Flashes and prey strikes were observed simultaneously by image-intensifying and infrared video cameras on a splitscreen monitor. Predation rates increased at dinoflagellate concentrations of 3 to 15 cells/ml and decreased below controls at levels>20 cells/ml. Videotape analysis showed that at low concentrations (2 to 5 cells/ml), strike success rates exceeded 75% if prey were previously illuminated by a flash, but dropped below 50% at higher cell densities. Increased predation was attributed to luminescence revealing prey position. The decrease at higher concentrations was considered to be due to greater flash frequency providing a more diffuse and confusing target. The study demonstrates the effects of secondary luminescence on zooplankton predation at normally encountered dinoflagellate concentrations.

Keywords

Cell Density Video Camera Dinoflagellate High Cell Density Predation Rate 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Literature cited

  1. Buck, J. B. (1978). Functions and evolutions of bioluminescence. In: Herring, P. J. (ed.) Bioluminescence in action. Academic Press, London, p. 419–460Google Scholar
  2. Burkenroad, M. D. (1943). A possible function of bioluminescence. J. mar. Res. 5: 161–164Google Scholar
  3. Buskey, E., Mills, L., Swift, E. (1983). The effects of dinoflagellate bioluminescence on the swimming behavior of a marine copepod. Limnol. Oceanogr. 28: 575–579Google Scholar
  4. Easias, W. E., Curl, H. C., Jr. (1972). Effect of dinoflagellate bioluminescence on copepod ingestion rates. Limnol. Oceanogr. 17: 901–906Google Scholar
  5. Guillard, R. R. L., Ryther, J. H. (1962). Studies of marine planktonic diatoms. I.Cyclotella nana (Hustedt) andDetonula confervacea (Cleve) Gran. Can. J. Microbiol. 8: 229–239Google Scholar
  6. Hobson, E. S., McFarland, W. N., Chess, J. R. (1981). Crepuscular and nocturnal activities of Californian nearshore fishes, with consideration of their scotopic visual pigments and the photic environment. Fish. Bull. U.S. 79: 1–30Google Scholar
  7. McAllister, D. E. (1961). A collection of oceanic fishes from off British Columbia with a discussion of the evolution of black peritoneum. Bull. natn. Mus. Can. 172: 39–43Google Scholar
  8. Mensinger, A. F., Case, J. F. (1989). Relationship between bioluminescence and vision in the midshipman,Porichthys notatus. Am. Zool. 29: p. 67 AGoogle Scholar
  9. Morin, J. G. (1983). Coastal bioluminescence: patterns and functions. Bull. mar. Sci. 33: 787–817Google Scholar
  10. Tett, P. B., Kelly, M. G. (1973). Marine bioluminescence. Oceanogr. mar. Biol. A. Rev. 11: 89–173Google Scholar
  11. White, H. H. (1979). Effects of dinoflagellate bioluminescence on the ingestion rates of herbivorous zooplankton. J. exp. mar. Biol. Ecol. 36: 217–224Google Scholar
  12. Widder, E. A., Case, J. F. (1982). Luminescent microsource activity in bioluminescence of the dinoflagellate,Pyrocystis fusiformis. J. comp. Physiol. 145: 517–527Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. F. Mesinger
    • 1
    • 2
  • J. F. Case
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Biological SciencesUniversity of California at Santa BarbaraSanta BarbaraUSA
  2. 2.Marine Science InstituteUniversity of California at Santa BarbaraSanta BarbaraUSA

Personalised recommendations