Chemical alarm cues inform prey of predation threat: the importance of ontogeny and concentration in a coral reef fish

Publication year: 2011
Source: Animal Behaviour, In Press, Corrected Proof, Available online 14 June 2011

Oona M., Lönnstedt , Mark I., McCormick

Prey that respond to inappropriate cues in their assessment of predation risk spend more time performing defensive behaviours and less time undertaking behaviours that promote fitness. Hence, prey should respond to cues that are the best predictors of predation risk relevant to the prey individual. Many fish undergo ontogenetic shifts in habitat and resource use during their lifetime; consequently, prey fish are exposed to a variety of predators at different stages of their development. Also, as relative concentration of the alarm cue represents both spatial and temporal information about a predation event, prey should adjust the intensity of their antipredator…