Stomach contents and stable isotopes analysis indicate Hemimysis anomala in Lake Ontario are broadly omnivorous
Hemimysis anomala is a recent invader to North American aquatic ecosystems and is spreading rapidly throughout the Great Lakes region. This is the first littoral mysid in the North American Great Lakes; and, as such, the ecosystem effects are unknown and could be substantial. These effects depend on the role of Hemimysis in the food web and, therefore, on its diet. We examined the stomach contents of two life stages of Hemimysis from two sites in Lake Ontario during the growing season (May–November 2010). We also report the relationship between zooplankton hard parts and size for a number of potential prey species to allow the back-calculation of prey lengths from stomach contents. Both juvenile (2–5 mm) and adult Hemimysis (5–11 mm) were omnivorous, consuming phytoplankton, zooplankton, and benthos when available. However, adults appeared slightly more carnivorous and incorporated larger prey in their diets. Hemimysis were able to consume zooplankton prey up to 30% of their own length, including Bythotrephes longimanus and Cercopagis pengoi. Daphnia and Bosmina were selected over other prey by both juvenile and adult Hemimysis and were most common in stomachs during July and September when their abundances in the zooplankton were highest. Measurements of δ13C and δ15N corroborated stomach content materials, indicating an omnivorous diet which included benthic and pelagic sources. Omnivory by Hemimysis is typical of mysids in general and makes them less sensitive to seasonal dynamics of preferred prey items.
|Stomach contents and stable isotopes analysis indicate Hemimysis anomala in Lake Ontario are broadly omnivorous
|T. M. Evans, R. Naddafi, Brian C. Weidel, Brian F. Lantry, M. G. Walsh, B. T. Boscarino, O. E. Johannsson, L. G. Rudstam
|Journal of Great Lakes Research
|USGS Publications Warehouse
|Great Lakes Science Center