Farwell, Morley K. (1970) The agonistic behaviour of juvenile Stichaeus Punctatus (Stichaeidae). Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.
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Juvenile Stichaeus punctatus were obtained while diving at two locations on the Avalon Peninsula. Laboratory observations were undertaken on fish held in aquaria supplied with a continuous flow of seawater and a 12 hr light, 12 hr dark photoperiod. -- A qualitative description of the agonistic behaviour was accomplished with seven recognizable actions being observed. These actions are: approach, threat, nip, flee, chase, flatten, and back away. Dominant and subordinate fish showed different frequencies and durations of these actions and also differed in their colouration. The sequence of occurrence of agonistic actions was not random and a sequence diagram was derived. Agonistic behaviour decreased in frequency and bouts involved fewer actions as the length of the encounter increased. Agonistic behaviour and motor activity occur diurnally in the laboratory and in the field. A high level of agonistic and motor activity was observed at dawn. -- The sensory modes used by S. punctatus during agonistic interaction were investigated using partitioned tanks, models, mirrors, and seawater inhabited by a conspecific. This investigation showed that visual cues must be present in order that agonistic behaviour be observed. Available space was found to be important in the structuring of agonistic behaviour. A persistent dominance and subordination of individuals was observed in the smaller tank. Territories were established in the larger tank. -- The agonistic activity of yearling fish was observed to decrease in the summer and subsequently increase in the fall. It appears that water temperature may be a causal factor in these changes.
|Item Type:||Thesis (Masters)|
|Additional Information:||Bibliography: leaves -102.|
|Department(s):||Science, Faculty of > Biology|
|Library of Congress Subject Heading:||Fishes--Behavior|
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