Blacknose shiners (Notropis heterolepis) have developed many ways to detect predators and ways to react to avoid detection themselves. We wished to determine the ways in which blacknose shiners react to two such detection strategies: visual and chemical. Prey fish such as shiners can chemically detect predator fish through kairomones. These chemicals allow prey fish to detect a predator at a greater distance than vision alone would allow. We found no significant response in blacknose shiners to a visual stimulus of predator perch or from kairomones from perch. However, a trend in reduction of activity was detectable from the kairomone stimulus. This trend further supports evidence that kairomones are used as a fish’s primary detection technique of predators as opposed to visual cues.
Visual versus kairomone response to a predator perch (Perca) in blacknose shiners (Notropis heterolepis).
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