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Diet as a mechanism of coexistence between intertidal fish species of the U.K.

Barrett, C. J.; Johnson, M. L.; Hull, S. L.


C. J. Barrett

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Dr Sue Hull
Senior Lecturer in Marine Biology and Ecology/ Programme Director, Marine Biology


While the syntopic nature of many intertidal fish communities suggest that resources such as food are shared, little has been done to assess the importance of diet on the coexistence of intertidal fish of the U.K. In this study, six intertidal fish species (shanny, Lipophrys pholis, Blenniidae; long-spined scorpion fish, Taurulus bubalis, Cottidae; two-spotted goby, Gobiusculus flavescens, Gobiidae; rock goby, Gobius paganellus, Gobiidae; plaice, Pleuronectes platessa, Pleuronectidae; butterfish, Pholis gunnellus, Pholidae) were collected from two sites along the east coast of England (Filey and Thornwick Bay) and two sites around the coast of the Isle of Anglesey, North Wales (Rhosneigr and Penrhos), during summer and winter. A comparison of the diets of those in the highest abundances (L. pholis, T. bubalis and G. flavescens) found that, in general, prey preferences were dissimilar between species, albeit with some slight overlap, and therefore it could be said that diet acts as an important mechanism of interspecific coexistence.


Barrett, C. J., Johnson, M. L., & Hull, S. L. (2016). Diet as a mechanism of coexistence between intertidal fish species of the U.K. Hydrobiologia, 768(1), 125-135.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Oct 6, 2015
Online Publication Date Oct 15, 2015
Publication Date Mar 1, 2016
Deposit Date May 15, 2017
Journal Hydrobiologia
Print ISSN 0018-8158
Electronic ISSN 1573-5117
Publisher Springer Verlag
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 768
Issue 1
Pages 125-135
Keywords Intertidal environment; Fish; Rock pools; Diet; Coexistence; Interspecific relationships
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Publisher URL
Additional Information This is the author's accepted manuscript of an article published in Hydrobiologia, 2016, v.768 issue 1.