Aerobic, heterotrophic gastrointestinal microflora of tropical marine fishes

Sutton, D.C., and Clements, K.D. (1988) Aerobic, heterotrophic gastrointestinal microflora of tropical marine fishes. In: Proceedings of the 6th International Coral Reef Symposium (3) pp. 185-190. From: 6th International Coral Reef Symposium, 8-12 August 1988, Townsville, QLD, Australia.

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The aerobic/facultatively anaerobic bacterial flora of the gastrointestinal tract of four tropical marine fishes, representing differing nutritional habits, was investigated. Populations of marine bacteria in the coral trout (Plectropomus leopardus), a carnivore, were variable and not clearly related to the presence of food in the intestinal tract. For the planktivore Caesio erythrogaster, and the detritivore (Ctenochaetus striatus), up to 108 bacteria were detected per gram of gastrointestinal contents, and the population size remained relatively constant throughout the intestinal length. Vibrio species, particularly V. harveyi and V. damsela, dominated the microbial populations in all of the above fish. The intestinal microflora of the herbivore Acanthurus nigrofuscus was markedly different from the other fish examined. Stomach contents were devoid of culturable bacteria and the intestinal tract was dominated (in some cases up to 100%) by agar digesting non-Vibrio bacteria. These results are discussed in relation to the possible role of marine bacteria in digestive and nutritional processes in tropical marine fishes.

Item ID: 33831
Item Type: Conference Item (Research - E1)
ISBN: 978-0-7316-5608-0
Keywords: ICRS6; stress; bacteria; reef fish; feeding
Funders: Lizard Island Doctoral Research Fellowship
Date Deposited: 08 Jan 2015 06:22
FoR Codes: 06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0602 Ecology > 060205 Marine and Estuarine Ecology (incl Marine Ichthyology) @ 100%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9608 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity > 960808 Marine Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity @ 100%
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