Diet of the Pacific Sand Lance (Ammodytes hexapterus) in the Salish Sea, British Columbia, in the 1960s

J. Mark Hipfner, Moira Galbraith

Abstract


The diet of the Pacific Sand Lance (Ammodytes hexapterus) was quantified from the stomach contents of 115 Pacific Sand Lance caught in the Strait of Georgia and Saanich Inlet (Vancouver Island) in the Salish Sea, British Columbia, in the spring and summer of 1966, in the Strait of Georgia in the spring and summer of 1967, and in the Strait of Georgia and Saanich Inlet in the spring and summer of 1968. There were 12 major taxa of prey in diets, 8 of which were Crustacea. Based on an index of relative importance, copepods were the dominant prey in 1966 and 1968, but not in 1967, when cladocerans, larvaceans, and teleosts also were common. The copepods Pseudocalanus spp. and Calanus marshallae were the only taxa to appear in diets in all three years. Pseudocalanus dominated the copepod component of diets in 1966, when sampling occurred in July; unspecified copepod nauplii (an early larval stage) were dominant in 1967 and 1968, when sampling occurred earlier (April to June). With the profound changes that have occurred in the Salish Sea over recent decades, these data can serve as a baseline for comparison.

Keywords


Pacific Sand Lance; Ammodytes hexapterus; diet; interannual variation; decadal variation; Strait of Georgia; Salish Sea; British Columbia

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.22621/cfn.v128i1.1551



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