Polar Biology

, Volume 26, Issue 7, pp 474–485 | Cite as

Size-related dietary changes observed in the squid Moroteuthis ingens at the Falkland Islands: stomach contents and fatty-acid analyses

  • Katrina L. PhillipsEmail author
  • Peter D. Nichols
  • George D. Jackson
Original Paper


Dietary composition of the onychoteuthid squid Moroteuthis ingens at the Falkland Islands was related to predator size, as shown by stomach contents and fatty-acid analyses. Comparisons were made between two size classes of squid: those of mantle length <200 mm and those of mantle length >200 mm. Smaller squid had frequently consumed crustaceans and cephalopods; fish were of secondary importance. Larger squid consumed mostly fish and moderate amounts of cephalopods, but had rarely consumed crustaceans. These findings were supported by comparisons drawn between digestive-gland fatty-acid profiles and the fatty-acid profiles of potential prey species. Fatty-acid analyses indicated that the crustaceans Euphausia lucens, Munida gregaria and Themisto gaudichaudii were important prey items of smaller squid, whereas stomach content and fatty-acid analyses indicated that Gymnoscopelus nicholsi of around 100 mm standard length represented much of the fish prey of larger squid.


Stomach Content Prey Species Digestive Gland Large Size Class Small Size Class 
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K. Phillips is a recipient of a Tasmanian Strategic Research Scholarship. We thank the captain, crew and scientific observers aboard the Dorada, the Falkland Islands Government Fisheries Department, and particularly V. Bisikov and N. Buxton for their assistance. Many thanks to D. Williams for verifying otolith identifications, and to T. van Ommen who assisted with the preparation of Fig. 1. M. Haddon and S. Wotherspoon provided statistical advice, and B. Mooney and D. Holdsworth managed the CSIRO GC and GC-MS facilities, respectively. The Australian Antarctic Division kindly provided access to their image analysis system. This work was supported in part by an Australian Research Council large grant (A19933031) awarded to G.D.J.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Katrina L. Phillips
    • 1
    Email author
  • Peter D. Nichols
    • 2
    • 3
  • George D. Jackson
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Antarctic and Southern Ocean StudiesUniversity of TasmaniaHobartAustralia
  2. 2.CSIRO Marine ResearchHobartAustralia
  3. 3.Antarctic CRCUniversity of TasmaniaHobartAustralia

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