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Investigations on the feeding habits of the rocky-shore mite Hyadesia fusca (Acari: Astigmata: Hyadesiidae): diet range, food preference, food quality, and the implications for distribution patterns
Bücking, J. (1998). Investigations on the feeding habits of the rocky-shore mite Hyadesia fusca (Acari: Astigmata: Hyadesiidae): diet range, food preference, food quality, and the implications for distribution patterns. Helgol. Meeresunters. 52(2): 155-177. hdl.handle.net/10.1007/BF02908745
In: Helgoländer Meeresuntersuchungen. Biologische Anstalt Helgoland: Hamburg. ISSN 0174-3597, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Keyword
    Marine

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  • Bücking, J.

Abstract
    Within the food web of estuarine and marine rocky shore ecosystems phytophagous mites of terrestrial and marine origin constitute an important part as grazers on algae and as a food source for certain arthropods, especially zoophagous mites. This investigation deals with the feeding biology ofHyadesia fusca taking as an example a population located on an artificial rocky shore of the middle Weser estuary in Northern Germany. The species is characterized by a broad diet range; in feeding experiments diatoms, lichens, detritus as well as blue, red and green algae were accepted. Even analyses of faecal pellets produced by field specimen suggest a non-specific feeding habit. However, the influence of certain diets on mortality, offspring number and rearing success showed that the food quality differs significantly. The most suitable food, the UlvaceaeBlidingia, was clearly preferred in a series of pairwise choice tests. These findings correlate with the vertical zonation of the field population i.e.: higher population densities in the vegetation zone dominated byBlidingia. It can be concluded that in addition to abiotic factors food supply could play an important role for distribution patterns of phytophagous mites.

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