Assessing feeding competition between lake whitefish Core-gonus clupeaformis and round whitefish Prosopium cyl-indraceum
Andrew MACPHERSON, John A. HOLMES, Andrew M. MUIR,David L. G. NOAKES
A x e l r o d I n s t i t u t e o f I c h t h y o l o g y a n d D e p a r t m e n t o f Z o o l o g y , U n i v e r s i t y o f G u e l p h , C a n a d a
We collected lake whitefish Coregonus clupeaformis and round whitefish Prosopium cylindraceum from the main basin of Lake Huron and Georgian Bay in the Laurentian Great Lakes of North America to investigate details of diet and feeding tactics of these species in different seasons. Lake whitefish supports important commercial fisheries in Lake Huron and both species make use of habitats near the Bruce Nuclear Power Development, on the eastern shore of Lake Huron.Most fish of both species showed generalist feeding behavior, but some lake whitefish appeared to show specialist prey selection. The invasive spiny water flea Bythotrephes longimanus was an important component of the diet of both species. There was considerable dietary overlap between the whitefish species, but the ecological implications of these dietary overlaps are mitigated by the fact that dominant prey species differed in most seasons. We conclude that the potential for ecologically significant interactions between lake whitefish and round whitefish resulting from competition for similar benthic food resources in the main basin of Lake Huron is probably low[Current Zoology 56 (1): 109–117 2010].
Lake Huron, Diet, Feeding tactics, Seasonal variation, Invasive species