Food segregation in three species of portunid crabs

Shiu Sun Rudolf WU, P. K. S. SHIN

Research output: Contribution to journalArticles

21 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Gastric mills of 2,619 specimens of portunid crabs (Portunus pelagicus, P. sanguinolentus and Charybdis feriatus) in Tolo Harbour, Hong Kong were examined. Of these, 1,498 contained recognizable food items. A total of 34 food items were identified, 10 of which (29.4%) were common to the three crab species. The principal food items were bivalves, decapods, fish and algae. However, the percent frequency of occurrence of these food items differed significantly (ANOVA, p < 0.001) among the crabs. In addition to these principal food items, differences were noted in other dietary categories: P. pelagicus and P. sanguinolentus fed on the brittle star Ophiura kinbergi, whereas P sanguinolentus and C. feriatus fed on detritus and gastropods. The diet of P. sanguinolentus was found to be more similar to C. feriatus than to P. pelagicus. Exploitation of different food items and selective feeding on common prey may reduce inter-specific competition for natural food resources and allow the three portunid crabs to co-exist in the same habitat. Copyright © 1997 Kluwer Academic Publishers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)107-113
JournalHydrobiologia
Volume362
Issue number1-3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1997

Citation

Wu, R. S. S., & Shin, P. K. S. (1997). Food segregation in three species of portunid crabs. Hydrobiologia, 362(1-3), 107-113. doi: 10.1023/A:1003126415990

Keywords

  • Diet
  • Food segregation
  • Inter-specific competition
  • Portunidcrabs

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Food segregation in three species of portunid crabs'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.