, Volume 371, Issue 0, pp 123–132 | Cite as

New approaches to the behavioural ecology of decapod crustaceans using telemetry and electronic tags

  • Juan Freire
  • Eduardo González-Gurriarán


Decapod crustaceans have complex life histories and behaviour in aspects such as foraging, mating and reproduction, moulting and growth, habitat selection and migration. New technologies have enabled us to use an individual, field-based approach to analyze these problems, although they have been less developed in decapods than in marine vertebrates. These new possibilities are discussed here mainly from a biological point of view. There is a brief review of previous applications of telemetry to analyze habitat selection, foraging behaviour, energetics, moulting site selection and migrations in decapods, and two case studies are discussed in more detail. The first one refers to the study of differences in habitat use and movement patterns in juveniles and adults of coastal species that show ontogenetic habitat shifts, related to differences in selective pressures affecting both life history stages (predation risk, and growth and reproduction optimization). The second case study is dedicated to the migratory patterns in spider crabs combining telemetry and electronic tags. Operational limitations in tracking make it impossible to get detailed information on movement patterns during migration, which in turn involve an important bathymetric gradient and a change in the oceanographic environment (mainly temperature). Monitoring depth and temperature in the immediate habitat of the animals, using electronic data storage tags recovered by the fishery, allow for movement patterns to be modeled using supplementary information on the topography and hydrography of the study area. This approach is being tested using both telemetry and electronic tags simultaneously.

behavioural ecology crustaceans decapods electronictags migrations telemetry 


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© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Juan Freire
  • Eduardo González-Gurriarán

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