Predators and the Distribution and Abundance of Blennies on Offshore Petroleum Platforms
Predation may be important in structuring fish assemblages but studies of the intensity of predation on marine fish assemblages are uncommon. Predator avoidance behavior was used to identify the predators of an assemblage of blennies found on offshore petroleum platforms in the northern Gulf of Mexico. The distribution of predators was then compared with the distribution of 3 species of blennies to see if predation intensity was related to the vertical zonation of blennies. Predator approaches and blenniid activity were compared in low and high surface current events. Results did not support a hypothesis of predation controlling the distribution and abundance of blennies. Also, predators were less abundant and blennies increased their activity when a surface current was present. ‘Enemy free space’ created by surface currents may help explain why predation is not important in structuring these blenniid assemblages.
Rauch, T. J.
Predators and the Distribution and Abundance of Blennies on Offshore Petroleum Platforms.
Gulf and Caribbean Research
Retrieved from http://aquila.usm.edu/gcr/vol16/iss2/2