Diet of Whale Sharks Rhincodon typus inferred from stomach content and signature fatty acid analyses
MARINE ECOLOGY PROGRESS SERIES
Whale sharks Rhincodon typus are large filter-feeders that are frequently observed feeding in surface zooplankton patches at their tropical and subtropical coastal aggregation sites. Using signature fatty acid (FA) analyses from their subdermal connective tissue and stomach content analysis, we tested whether whale sharks in Mozambique and South Africa predominantly feed on these prey and/or what other prey they target. Arachidonic acid (20:4ω6; mean ± SD = 17.8 ± 2.0% of total FA), 18:0 and 18:1ω9c were major FA of whale sharks, while in contrast, coastal epipelagic zooplankton collected near feeding whale sharks had 22:6ω3 (docosahexaenoic acid), 16:0 and 20:5ω3 (eicosapentaenoic acid) as major FA.
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- Biodiversidade Marinha
- Artigo com revisão pelos pares e teses universitárias
- Identificação, Monitoria, Indicadores e Avaliações
- Nenhuma / Não aplicável