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Cost of Safety

Title: The Cost of Safety: Negotiating the Trade-Off between Safety and Growth.
Name(s): Matechik, Christopher, author
Biological Science
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Text
Issuance: serial
Date Issued: 2011
Physical Form: computer
online resource
Extent: 1 online resource
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: To avoid the threat of predation, prey can alter their behavior such as moving from habitats where predation risk is high to those where it is low. However, such behaviors may involve a tradeoff if the low risk habitats are suboptimal feeding locations for the prey compared to the high risk ones. In seagrass, pinfish (Lagodon rhomboides) often move from low- to high-blade density patches in the presence of the predatory Gulf flounder (Paralichthys albigutta). However, restricted movements in high-blade habitats may lead to reduced foraging efficiency and growth rates. I used a field experiment that ran for 28 days to examine this potential tradeoff between survival and growth. Neither predator presence nor seagrass blade density affected survival or growth in pinfish. However, after accounting for the loss of experimental replicates at lower grass-blade densities, the change in pinfish biomass was greater in the predator-present treatment compared to the controls, suggesting higher mortality, increased vigilance or both when flounder were present. Unfortunately, loss of experimental replicates and high variance in the measured responses hindered my ability to address the potential tradeoff, but suggestive results support further examination.
Identifier: FSU_migr_uhm-0025 (IID)
Keywords: Gulf flounder, Pinfish, Seagrass, Growth, Predation
Submitted Note: A Thesis submitted to the Department of Biological Science in partial fulfillment of the requirements for graduation with Honors in the Major.
Degree Awarded: Spring Semester, 2011.
Date of Defense: April 1, 2011.
Subject(s): Biology
Persistent Link to This Record:
Restrictions on Access:
Host Institution: FSU
Is Part of Series: Honors Theses.

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Matechik, C. (2011). The Cost of Safety: Negotiating the Trade-Off between Safety and Growth. Retrieved from