>
 
FishingBoating-World.com
 
 
News Home Newsletters Photo Gallery Powerboat-World Australian Cruising World Cruising MarineBusiness-World Animated Knots
MarineBusiness-World Animated Knots Video Gallery MarineBusiness-World
Sail-World.com : Scientific research finds that small prey fish can grow a bigger 'eye'
Scientific research finds that small prey fish can grow a bigger 'eye'


'Tiny fish make ‘eyes’ at their killer'    Arc Centre of excellence for coral reef studies
New scientific research has found that small prey fish can grow a bigger ‘eye’ on their rear fins as a way of distracting predators and dramatically boosting their chances of survival.

Researchers from Australia’s ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies (CoECRS) have made a world-first discovery that, when constantly threatened with being eaten, small damsel fish not only grow a larger false ‘eye spot’ near their tail – but also reduce the size of their real eyes.

The result is a fish that looks like it is heading in the opposite direction – potentially confusing predatory fish with plans to gobble them up, says Oona Lönnstedt, a graduate student at CoECRS and James Cook University.

For decades scientists have debated whether false eyespots, or dark circular marks on less vulnerable regions of the bodies of prey animals, played an important role in protecting them from predators – or were simply a fortuitous evolutionary accident.

The CoECRS team has found the first clear evidence that fish can change the size of both the misleading spot and their real eye to maximise their chances of survival when under threat.

'It’s an amazing feat of cunning for a tiny fish,' Ms Lonnstedt says. 'Young damsel fish are pale yellow in colour and have this distinctive black circular ‘eye’ marking towards their tail, which fades as they mature. We figured it must serve an important purpose when they are young.'

'We found that when young damsel fish were placed in a specially built tank where they could see and smell predatory fish without being attacked, they automatically began to grow a bigger eye spot, and their real eye became relatively smaller, compared with damsels exposed only to herbivorous fish, or isolated ones.

'We believe this is the first study to document predator-induced changes in the size of eyes and eye-spots in prey animals.'

When the researchers investigated what happens in nature on a coral reef with lots of predators, they found that juvenile damsel fish with enlarged eye spots had an amazing five times the survival rate of fish with a normal-sized spot.

'This was dramatic proof that eyespots work – and give young fish a hugely increased chance of not being eaten.

'We think the eyespots not only cause the predator to attack the wrong end of the fish, enabling it to escape by accelerating in the opposite direction, but also reduce the risk of fatal injury to the head,' she explains.

The team also noted that when placed in proximity to a predator the young damsel fish also adopted other protective behaviours and features, including reducing activity levels, taking refuge more often and developing a chunkier body shape less easy for a predator to swallow.

'It all goes to show that even a very young, tiny fish a few millimetres long have evolved quite a range of clever strategies for survival which they can deploy when a threatening situation demands,' Ms Lonnstedt says.

Their paper 'Predator-induced changes in the growth of eyes and false eyespots' by Oona M. Lonnstedt, Mark I. McCormick and Douglas P. Chivers appears in the latest issue of the journal Scientific Reports.

For more information visit ARC Centre of Excellence Website


by ARC Centre of Excellence

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.fishingboating-world.com/index.cfm?nid=115006

9:55 AM Wed 25 Sep 2013GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.







FishingBoating-World





Abbot Point onshore disposal by Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority,












Great Barrier Reef plan released for comment by Queensland Minister for Environment,












Brisbane Boat Show begins *Feature by Jeni Bone,






































Marine Rescue crew saves cruiser in trouble in rough conditions
Dangerous conditions for boaters on most of NSW coast
2014 Mandurah Boat Show - Third largest boat show in Australia
Fishers invited to industry meetings
Antarctic sea-level rising faster than global rate
Andrew Scott joins Superior as General Manager *Feature
Best Birthday Party ever at Southport Yacht Club! *Feature
From nursery to school: Research highlights critical fish habitats
‘Hall of Fame’ status for Empire Marina *Feature
Saltwater Species Hunt Challenge launched
‘Fish Friendly’ accreditation for Sanctuary Cove Marina
Vicsail Boat show Open Day at Rushcutters Bay
Marine15 - prospectus available online now + VIDEO *Feature
Southport Yacht Club achieves Clean Marina certification + VIDEO *Feature
Port Kembla Volunteers bring in 75 metre monster from 5nm offshore
Gold Coast Int'l Marine Expo - Make every moment one to remember
Dangerous conditions for boaters from Queensland border to Sydney
Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games - Opening series concludes
4x4 Outdoors Show and Fishing and Boating Expo - Busy opening day
More new boats brand Brisbane Boat Show as a spectacular showcase
Discover world of transport - Holidays at National Maritime Museum   
Garmin’s compact echo dv fishfinders pack a powerful punch   
Anthony Gagliardi wins Forrest Wood Cup at Lake Murray   
REMUS SharkCam captures up-close encounters with Great White Sharks   
From Penguins to Polar Bears   
Understanding the value of commercial fishers and how they survive   
4x4 Outdoors Show and Fishing and Boating Expo on the horizon   
Polar research: Six priorities for Antarctic science   
Bivalves' ability to clean chemicals from waterways   
Brisbane Boat Show 2014 - New boat engines set to rev up interest   
Two rescued in tow from 13km offshore   
National 4x4 Outdoors Show and Fishing and Boating Expo - 4WD heaven   
Sydney Boat Show display winners recognised *Feature   
US leads the way in shark conservation, science and management   
2014 National 4x4 Outdoors Show: Popularity of caravanning and camping   
2015 Sydney Inte'l Boat Show - Boating Industry commences planning   
John Hemingway joins anglers for upcoming Wahoo Smackdown V   
Dangerous conditions for boaters from this evening   
Pacific Boating membership offers hassle-free boating *Feature   
Marine15 expands trade, networking and B2B opportunities *Feature   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW FBW
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT