Ontogenetic trends in resource partitioning and trophic geography of sympatric skates (Rajidae) inferred from stable isotope composition across eye lenses

Simpson, SJ; Sims, DW; Trueman, CN. 2019 Ontogenetic trends in resource partitioning and trophic geography of sympatric skates (Rajidae) inferred from stable isotope composition across eye lenses. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 624. 103-116. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps13030

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Official URL: https://www.int-res.com/abstracts/meps/v624/p103-1...

Abstract/Summary

Resource partitioning is expected in sympatric assemblages of predators as a mechanism that reduces competition between individuals of different species or age classes, which in turn can affect population and community interactions as well as resource distribution and availability. However, for species such as benthic skates (Rajidae), the juveniles of which are cryptic and not easily sampled by traditional survey methods, there is a knowledge gap concerning the spatial and trophic ecology during early life stages. The eye lenses of vertebrates grow over their lifetime providing a chronological biochemical record that can be used to infer differences in diet and/or foraging location (trophic geography) throughout the ontogeny of the animal. For the first time, eye lenses of 4 sympatric Rajidae species from the northeast Atlantic were successfully used to recover stable isotope life histories for individual skates. Isotopic separation among species and across life stages within species suggests that habitat partitioning and differences in trophic ecology are present throughout ontogeny. Isotopic data imply that adults are separated from juveniles both spatially and in terms of their diet and the 4 species appear to partition resources more than expected based on previous studies.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Additional Keywords: Sclerochronology · Carbon · Nitrogen · Raja spp. · Ray · Skate · Stable isotopes
Subjects: Marine Sciences
Divisions: Marine Biological Association of the UK > Ecosystems and Environmental Change > Movement ecology, behaviour and population structure
Depositing User: Emily Smart
Date made live: 08 Oct 2021 13:53
Last Modified: 08 Oct 2021 13:53
URI: http://plymsea.ac.uk/id/eprint/9402

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