Plankton and Benthos Research
Online ISSN : 1882-627X
Print ISSN : 1880-8247
ISSN-L : 1880-8247
Original Papers
Predatory behavior of the sea stars Asterias amurensis and Distolasterias nipon on the Japanese scallop, Mizuhopecten yessoensis
Hiroyuki NishimuraKoji MiyoshiSusumu Chiba
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2019 Volume 14 Issue 1 Pages 1-7


Because sea stars are the primary predators of the Japanese scallop, Mizuhopecten yessoensis, they are being removed from scallop fishing grounds, despite the lack of information on their predatory impacts. We experimentally examined the predatory behavior of the sea stars Asterias amurensis and Distolasterias nipon on the Japanese scallop. In the first experiment, we hypothesized that sea stars respond to distant chemical cues from live scallops. However, the results showed that neither A. amurensis nor D. nipon responded to the chemical cues of live intact animals, though it is commonly known that they respond to the chemical cues of carrion. We also examined the effects of the relative sizes of the sea stars to the scallop on their predator-prey relationship. We altered the body size ratios of the Japanese scallop to A. amurensis in the summer and winter, and to D. nipon in the summer, and observed the scallops’ survival. In all experiments, logistic regression models were applied to changes in survival under different prey-to-predator size ratios, which were calculated by dividing the scallop size by the sea star size. Our results suggested that survival of the Japanese scallop rapidly increases with increasing body size. The ratios at which mortality was 50% provide an important parameter in estimating the predation risk from sea stars in scallop fishing grounds. Our study will contribute to the effective and responsible management of Japanese scallop mariculture.

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© 2019 The Japanese Association of Benthology
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