Differences in timidity and escape responses between predator-naive and predator-sympatric rainbowfish populations

Citation
C. Brown et K. Warburton, Differences in timidity and escape responses between predator-naive and predator-sympatric rainbowfish populations, ETHOLOGY, 105(6), 1999, pp. 491-502
Citations number
25
Language
INGLESE
art.tipo
Article
Categorie Soggetti
Animal Sciences","Neurosciences & Behavoir
Journal title
ETHOLOGY
ISSN journal
0179-1613 → ACNP
Volume
105
Issue
6
Year of publication
1999
Pages
491 - 502
Database
ISI
SICI code
0179-1613(199906)105:6<491:DITAER>2.0.ZU;2-L
Abstract
Responses of rainbowfish (Melanotaenia duboulayi) from two populations towa rds a) an active and a passive predatory fish and b) a novel trawl apparatu s, were compared. Predator-sympatric fish avoided the fish predators and sh owed stronger avoidance behaviour in response to the active predator. These fish used predator inspection excursions to rapidly assess the potential r isk and their escape responses were consistently effective. In contrast the predator-naive fish ignored the passive predator but were continually draw n towards the active predator possibly due to generalized curiosity and the absence of significant negative feedback from the predator, which was rest rained by a clear Perspex partition. Despite this attraction, the predator- naive fish did not display typical predator inspection behaviour and showed very poor escape performance when initially confronted by the trawl appara tus. Many of these fish, however, showed rapid improvement in their escape performance through learning. These results suggest that predator-sympatric rainbowfish have the capacity to assess the level of threat posed by a pre dator and predator-naive rainbowfish learn to implement appropriate escape strategies when forced to evade a threat.