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Ecology and taxonomy of mysids (Mysidacea : crustacea)

Fenton, Gwen Elizabeth 1985 , 'Ecology and taxonomy of mysids (Mysidacea : crustacea)', PhD thesis, University of Tasmania.

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The total number of species of mysids known from Australian waters
is 94, spanning 38 genera. Distribution records and keys to their
identification are provided. Of these species, three new genera and twelve
new species from Tasmania and Bass Strait have been described herein. In
addition, numerous new records have been reported. Forty-seven of the mysid
species and eight genera are endemic to Australia. The Australian mysid
fauna exhibits strong links with that of the Indo-West Pacific region.
A 12-month field study was conducted at One Tree Point, Bruny
Island Southern Tasmania, to investigate the role of mysids in an inshore
coastal community. Fourteen species were recorded from the study site; of
these, three i.e. Tenagomysis sp.2 n.sp., Anisomysis mixta australis and
Paramesopodopsis rufa n.g. n.sp., formed dense swarms. The major peaks of
abundance for each species were temporally separate. T.sp.2, A.mixta
australis and P.rufa were found to exhibit a number of ecological
differences, i.e. habitat partitioning (in zones parallel to shore), diet
and diel activity, which may explain their co-existence.
These three species bred continuously during spring, summer and
autumn. Breeding continued at a lower level during winter for T.sp.2 and
P.rufa, but A.mixta australis appeared to cease breeding over winter. The
breeding pattern was quite similar to that reported for most temperate
mysids throughout the world.
The annual production was calculated from the field data for each
species. Production was found to be greater for T.sp.2 than P.rufa and
A.mixta australis, but the annual turnover (P:B) was higher for A.mixta
australis (7.7) than T.sp.2 (5.5) and P.rufa (5.3). The values obtained
were high compared to those reported for mysid species in colder climates.

Trophic relationships within the mysid community were examined. Gut
contents analysis of the three mysids revealed a basically omnivorous diet,
but P.rufa fed to a greater degree on small crustaceans while the diet of
T.sp.2 was composed mainly of large fragments of macroalgae. The stomach
contents of A.mixta australis was composed of fine particulate detrital
matter. Comparison of stable isotope ratios ( 13C: 12C and H:D) of the mysids
with those of potential food sources supported these conclusions. In
addition, several fish that fed on mysids were identified by analysis of
their gut contents and others were implicated by comparison of their stable
isotope ratios.
The results suggest that apart from their importance in the diet of
several fish species, these mysids play a significant role in the turnover
of the macroalgal biomass, and may also be important in structuring the
zooplankton and/or meiobenthic community.
The results presented here have provided a major contribution to
the knowledge of both taxonomy and ecology of Australian mysids. However,
the need for continued examination of the taxonomy, biology and ecology of
Australian mysids is recognized, and consequently, avenues for further
research are suggested.

Item Type: Thesis - PhD
Authors/Creators:Fenton, Gwen Elizabeth
Keywords: Mysidacea, Mysidacea
Copyright Holders: The Author
Copyright Information:

Copyright 1985 the Author - The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright
owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We
would be pleased to hear from the copyright owner(s).

Additional Information:

Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Tasmania, 1986. Bibliography: leaves 342-366

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