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Goosefish capture small puffins over deep water of Northwest Atlantic
Date:4/10/2013

routine flight."

"One thing we know is that dovekies cannot dive to the bottom in 300 to 400 feet of water," Perry said. "Goosefish probably come up from the ocean bottom to within 10 to 20 feet of the water surface at night. As dovekies dive for amphipods, small crustaceans, in the morning at first light, goosefish seize the opportunity and might use their 'fishing lure' to simulate one of these prey species by attracting the dovekies with their typical 'sit and wait' behavior."

The magnitude of fish predation on seabirds is poorly understood. Perry says most food habit studies for goosefish have been conducted during summer when the dovekies have migrated north to their Arctic breeding areas; thus, they seldom have been recorded as prey. Perry hopes more telemetry tracking of goosefish will be done in winter when birds are in the area and are potential prey.

As for what's ahead, Richards says ongoing use of electronic tags on goosefish will provide more information on their vertical movements.


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Contact: Shelley Dawicki
Shelley.Dawicki@noaa.gov
508-495-2378
NOAA Fisheries Northeast Fisheries Science Center
Source:Eurekalert

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