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An increase in habitat complexity reduces aggression and monopolization of food by zebra fish (Danio rerio)

Title:

An increase in habitat complexity reduces aggression and monopolization of food by zebra fish (Danio rerio)

Basquill, Seán P. and Grant, James W.A. (1998) An increase in habitat complexity reduces aggression and monopolization of food by zebra fish (Danio rerio). Canadian Journal of Zoology, 76 (4). pp. 770-772. ISSN 0008-4301

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1139/z97-232

Abstract

We tested the predictions that an increase in the structural complexity of a habitat causes both a decrease in aggression and the monopolization of resources. Groups of three zebra fish (Danio rerio) were allowed to compete for food in a complex habitat with simulated vegetation and in a simple habitat with no vegetation. As predicted, both the levels of aggression by the dominant fish (P = 0.050) and the coefficient of variation of the amount of food eaten within a group (P = 0.020), a measure of food monopolization, were lower in the complex habitat than in the simple one. Fish that chased competitors more frequently ate more food in both habitats, but the relationship was stronger in the simple than in the complex habitat. Our results suggest that aggression is less useful as a mode of competition in habitats with greater structural complexity. Manipulating the structural complexity of the habitat may be a practical way of controlling the intensity of aggression and resource monopolization in groups of animals.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Biology
Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Authors:Basquill, Seán P. and Grant, James W.A.
Journal or Publication:Canadian Journal of Zoology
Date:April 1998
ID Code:7551
Deposited By:DANIELLE DENNIE
Deposited On:10 May 2011 16:52
Last Modified:10 May 2011 16:52
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