Foregut evacuation, return of appetite and gastric fluid secretion in the tropical freshwater crayfish, Cherax quadricarinatus
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The effects of animal size and feeding frequency on the foregut evacuation rates by Cherax quadricarinatus, that fed voluntarily on pellet food (meal size eaten, 1.3–1.4% body weight), were determined using a modified serial slaughter method. Evacuation rates did not differ significantly between size-groups (medium, large) and between feeding frequency-groups (fed daily, fed every second day). However, models that best described the evacuation process were different for each group (i.e., linear model for the crayfish fed daily, arcsine model for those fed every second day). This variation indicates the potential for a crayfish to regulate its digestion processes according to food availability. Faecal production rates did not differ significantly between feeding frequencies. Return of appetite, measured in terms of voluntary feed intake at bi-hourly intervals following satiation meals, was shown to be related to the foregut evacuation process, but it was probably the supply of fresh gastric fluid after ca. 4 h following a meal which mainly influenced the increase of appetite. The rapid return of appetite in crayfish implies that they can resume feeding while a considerable proportion of an earlier meal is still being processed in the foregut. This indicates that crayfish are capable of optimising the frequency of feeding during active foraging periods.
Suggested CitationLoya-Javellana, G. N., Fielder, D. R., & Thorne, M. J. (1995). Foregut evacuation, return of appetite and gastric fluid secretion in the tropical freshwater crayfish, Cherax quadricarinatus.
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