Social effects in growth experiments. Growth of jaguar guapote (Cichlasoma managuense) in isolation and in small groups. (ESP)
The growth rate and feed conversion of juveniles of the jaguar cichlid (Cichlasoma managuense) are compared at constant densities, in groups of 2, 5, 10 and 20 individuals per aquaria, and as isolated individuals. Density had a positive correlation with heterogeneous growth (coefficient of variation), with mortality and with mean and maximum growth rates. Feed conversion correlated negatively with density. Marked adaptation effects were observed during the first phases of the experiment. These effects were much stronger in individual fishes than in fish groups and appeared to be inversely correlated with density. After adaptation the growth rate of biggest fishes in the groups is still significantly greater than that of individual fishes. It is concluded that heterogeneous growth is not only due to growth depression of subordinate fishes but also to growth enhancement of dominant fishes.
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