Advertisement

Food borne parasites as indicators of trophic segregation between Arctic charr and brown trout

  • Rune Knudsen
  • Per-Arne Amundsen
  • Rune Nilsen
  • Roar Kristoffersen
  • Anders Klemetsen
Original Paper

Abstract

The habitat and diet choice and the infection (prevalence and abundance) of trophically transmitted parasites were compared in Arctic charr and brown trout living sympatrically in two lakes in northern Norway. Arctic charr were found in all main lake habitats, whereas the brown trout were almost exclusively found in the littoral zone. In both lakes the parasite fauna reflected the niche segregation between trout and charr. Surface insects were most common in the diet of trout, but transmit few parasites, and accordingly the brown trout had a relatively low diversity and abundance of parasites. Parasites transmitted by benthic prey such as Gammarus and insect larva, were common in both salmonid host species. Copepod transmitted parasites were much more common in Arctic charr, as brown trout did not include zooplankton in their diets. Parasite species that may use small fish as transport hosts, were far more abundant in piscivorous fish, especially brown trout. The seasonal dynamics in parasite infection were also consistent with the developments in the diet throughout the year. The study demonstrates that the structure of parasite communities of charr and the trout is highly dependent on shifts in habitat and diet of their hosts both on an annual base and through the ontogeny, in addition to the observed niche segregation between the two salmonid species.

Keywords

Parasite community Salvelinus alpinus Salmo trutta Feeding 

Notes

Acknowledgements

We want to thank Laina Dalsbø and Jan Evjen for technical assistance both in the field and in the laboratory.

References

  1. Amundsen P-A (1994) Piscivory and cannibalism in Arctic charr. J Fish Biol 45:181–189Google Scholar
  2. Amundsen P-A (1995) Feeding strategy of Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus): general opportunist, but individual specialist. Nordic J Freshw Res 71:150–156Google Scholar
  3. Amundsen P-A, Damsgård B, Arnesen AM, Jobling M, Jørgensen EH (1995) Experimental evidence of cannibalism and prey specialization in Arctic charr, Salvelinus alpinus. Environ Biol Fish 43:285–293CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Amundsen P-A, Knudsen R, Kuris AM, Kristofferesen R (2003) Seasonal and ontogenetic dynamics in trophic transmission of parasites. Oikos 102:285–293CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Amundsen P-A, Kristofferesen R, Knudsen R, Klemetsen A (1997) Infection of Salmincola edwardsii (Copepoda: Lernaeopodidae) in an age-structured population of Arctic charr – a long-term study. J Fish Biol 51:1033–1046Google Scholar
  6. Bush AO, Lafferty KD, Lotz JM, Shostak AW (1997) Parasitology meets ecology on its own terms: Margolis et al. revisited. J Parasitol 83:575–583PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Curtis MA (1984) Diphyllobothrium spp. and the Arctic charr: parasite acquisition and its effects on a lake-resident population. In: Johnson L, Burns BI (eds) Biology of the Arctic charr. Proceedings of the International Symposium on a Arctic charr, Winnipeg, Mannitoba, May 1981. University of Manitoba Press, Winnipeg, pp 395–411Google Scholar
  8. Curtis MA (1995) The ecological parasitology of charrs: relationships between parasites and food web structure in northern lakes. Nordic J Freshw Res 71:92–101Google Scholar
  9. Dervo BK, Hegge O, Hessen DO, Skurdal J (1991) Diel food selection of pelagic Arctic charr, Salvelinus alpinus (L.), and brown trout, Salmo trutta L., in lake Atnsjø, SE Norway. J Fish Biol 38:199–209CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Dubois N, Marcogliese DJ, Magnan P (1996) Effects of the introduction of white sucker, Catostomus commersoni, on the parasite fauna of brook trout, Salvelinus fontinalis. Can J Zool 74:1304–1312CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Fiorillo RA, Font WF (1996) Helminth community structure of four species of Lepomis (Oseichythes: Centrarchidae) from an oligohalin estuary in Southeastern Louisiana. J Helminth Soc Washington 63:24–30Google Scholar
  12. Gregersen F, Aass P, Vøllestad LA, L’Abée-Lund JH (2006) Long-term variation in diet of Arctic char, Salvelinus alpinus, and brown trout, Salmo trutta: effects of changes in fish density and food availability. Fish Manage Ecol 13:243–250CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Halvorsen O, Wissler SK (1973) An experimental study of the ability of Diphyllobothrium latum (L.), D. dendriticum (Nitzsch) and D. ditremum (Creplin) (Cestoda, Pseudophyllidea) to infect paratenic hosts. Norw J Zool 21:201–210Google Scholar
  14. Hartvigsen R, Halvorsen O (1993) Common and rare trout parasites in a small landscape system. Parasitology 106:101–105PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Hegge O, Dervo BK, Skurdal J, Hessen DO (1989) Habitat utilization by sympatric Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus (L.)) and brown trout (Salmo trutta L.) in lake Atnsjø, south-east Norway. Freshw Biol 22:143–152CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Holmes JC (1987) The structure of helminth communities. Int J Parasitol 17:203–208PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Holmes JC (1990) Helminth communities in marine fishes. In: Esch G, Bush A, Aho J (eds) Parasite communities: pattern and processes. Chapman and Hall Ltd., London, pp 101–130Google Scholar
  18. Jansen PA, Slettvold H, Finstad AG, Langeland A (2002) Niche segregation between Arctic char (Salvelinus alpinus) and brown trout (Salmo trutta): an experimental study of mechanisms. Can J Fish Aquat Sci 59:6–11Google Scholar
  19. Kennedy CR (1977) Distribution and zoogeographical characteristics of the parasite fauna of char Salvelinus alpinus in Arctic Norway, including Spitsbergen and Jan Mayen islands. Astarte 10:49–55Google Scholar
  20. Kennedy CR (1978) The parasite fauna of resident char Salvelinus alpinus from Arctic islands, with special reference to Bear Island. J Fish Biol 13:457–466CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Kennedy CR, Bush AO, Aho J (1986) Patterns in helminth communities – why are birds and fish different? Parasitology 93:205–215PubMedGoogle Scholar
  22. Klemetsen A (1967) On the feeding habits of the population of brown trout (Salmo trutta L.) in Jølstervann, West Norway, with special reference to the utilization of planktonic crustacean. Nytt Mag Zool 15:50–67Google Scholar
  23. Klemetsen A, Amundsen P-A, Dempson JB, Jonsson B, Jonsson N, O’Connell MF, Mortensen E (2003) Atlantic salmon Salmo salar L., brown trout Salmo trutta L. and Arctic charr Salvelinus alpinus (L.): a review of aspects of their life histories. Ecol Freshw Fish 12:1–59CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Knudsen R (1995) Relationships between habitat, prey selection and parasite infections in Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus). Nordic J Freshw Res 71:333–344Google Scholar
  25. Knudsen R, Klemetsen A, Staldvik F (1996) Parasites as indicators of individual feeding specialization in Arctic charr during winter in northern Norway. J Fish Biol 48:1256–1265CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Knudsen R, Kristoffersen R, Amundsen P-A (1997) Parasite communities in two sympatric morphs of Arctic charr, Salvelinus alpinus (L.), in northern Norway. Can J Zool 75:2003–2009CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Knudsen R, Amundsen P-A, Klemetsen A (2003) Inter- and intra-morph patterns in helminth communities of sympatric whitefish morphs. J Fish Biol 62:847–859CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Kristoffersen K, Klemetsen A (1991) Age determination of Arctic charr Salvelinus alpinus from surface and cross section of otoliths related to otolith growth. Nordic J Freshw Res 66:98–107Google Scholar
  29. L’Abée-Lund JH, Langeland A, Sægrov H (1992) Piscivory by brown trout and Arctic charr (L.) in Norwegian lakes. J Fish Biol 41:91–101CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. L’Abée-Lund JH, Aass P, Sægrov H (2002) Long-term variation in piscivory in a brown trout population: effect of changes in available prey organisms. Ecol Freshw Fish 11:260–269CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Langeland A, L’Abée-Lund JH, Jonsson B, Jonsson N (1991) Resource partitioning and niche-shifts in Arctic charr Salvelinus alpinus and brown trout Salmo trutta. J Anim Ecol 60:895–912CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Morand S, Cribb TH, Kulbicki M, Rigby MC, Chauvet C, Dufour V, Faliex E, Galzin R, Lo CM, Lo-yat A, Pichelin S, Sasal P (2000) Endoparasite species richness of New Caledonian butterfly fishes: host density and diet matter. Parasitology 121:65–73PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Nilsson N-A (1955) Studies on the feeding habits of trout (Salmo trutta) and charr (Salvelinus alpinus) in north Swedish lakes. Rep Inst Freshw Res Drottningholm 36:163–225Google Scholar
  34. Nilsson N-A (1967) Interactive segregation between fish species. In: Gerking SD (ed) The biological basis of freshwater fish production. Oxford, Blackwell, UK, pp 295–313Google Scholar
  35. Okaka CE (1984) Studies on the biology of Cyathocephalus truncatus (Pallas, 1781) (Cestoda: Spathebothriidae) in the fish and crustacean hosts. Ph.D. Thesis, Univ. of Leeds, UKGoogle Scholar
  36. Saksgård R, Hesthagen T (2004) A 14-year study of habitat use and diet of brown trout (Salmo trutta) and Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus) in Lake Atnsjøen, a subalpine Norwegian lake. Hydrobiologia 521:187–199CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Scholz T (1999) Life cycle of species of Proteocephalus, parasites of fishes in the Palearctic region: a review. J Helminthol 73:1–19PubMedGoogle Scholar
  38. Scholz T, Kuchta R, Shinn AP, Snábel V, Hanzelová V (2003) Host specificity and geographical distribution of Eubothrium in Eurpoean salmonid fish. J Helminthol 77:255–262PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Svenning MA, Borgstøm R (2005) Cannibalism in Arctic charr: do all individuals have the same propensity to be cannibals? J Fish Biol 66:957–965CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Vik R (1958) Studies on the helminth fauna of Norway. II Distribution and life cycle of Cyathocephalus truncatus (Pallas, 1781) (Cestoda). Nytt Mag Zool 6:97–100Google Scholar
  41. Valtonen ET, Julkunen M (1995) Influence of the transmission of parasites from prey fishes on the composition of the parasite community of a predatory fish. Can J Fish Aquat Sci 52(suppl. 1):233–245Google Scholar
  42. Williams HH, MacKenzie K, McCarthy AM (1992) Parasites as biological indicators of the population biology, migrations, diet, and and phylogenetics of fish. Rev Fish Biol Fish 2:144–176CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Williams HH, Jones (1994) Parasitic worms of fish. Taylor & Frances Ltd., LondonGoogle Scholar
  44. Wilson DS, Muzzal PM, Ehlinger TJ (1996) Parasites, morphology, and habitat use in blugill sunfish (Lepomis macrochirus) population. Copeia 2:348–354CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rune Knudsen
    • 1
  • Per-Arne Amundsen
    • 1
  • Rune Nilsen
    • 1
  • Roar Kristoffersen
    • 1
  • Anders Klemetsen
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Aquatic BioSciences, Norwegian College of Fishery ScienceUniversity of TromsøTromsøNorway

Personalised recommendations