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S. Balshine, A. Verma, V. Chant, and T. Theysmeyer (2005)

Competitive interactions between round gobies and logperch

Journal of Great Lakes Research, 31(1):68-77.

We examined territorial defense and behavioural interactions between two species of fish resident in Hamilton Harbour: non-indigenous round gobies (Neogobius melanostomus) and native log-perch (Percina caprodes). Trials consisted of placing one fish, "the resident" (either a round goby or a logperch), in a tank with a shelter for 24 hours before adding another fish, "the intruder" (either a round goby or a logperch), and recording aggressive incidents. Overall, gobies exhibited more aggressive behavior than logperch, and in general resident status had no effect on amount of aggression displayed. Also, gobies spent more time in shelters than logperch, and overall resident status did not affect the amount of time spent under shelter. We also compared abundance data for gobies and logperch using electrofishing transects in Hamilton Harbour that were conducted in 1995 and 2001 and found a dramatic increase in round goby numbers and a non-significant decrease in logperch numbers. Our data suggest that gobies are superior space competitors and hence the range expansion coupled with an increasing population size of the round gobies in Hamilton Harbour is likely to have deleterious consequences for logperch populations.

interspecies competition hamilton harbour lake ontario great lakes exotic invasive species goby neogobius-melanostomus southern lake-michigan great-lakes invasion residency contests behavior fishes bairdi size