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The rotifer contribution to the diet of Eudiaptomus gracilis (G. O. Sars, 1863) (Copepoda, Calanoida)

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We studied potentially omnivorous feeding of the common limnetic calanoid copepod Eudiaptomus gracilis using feeding experiments with subsequent gut content analysis. Feeding experiments performed with a laboratory culture of the rotifer Brachionus calyciflorus established a daily feeding rate reaching up to 9.8 rotifers per day when a rotifer-only diet was offered. Addition of algae (Chlamydomonas sp.) to the calanoid diet decreased the ingestion rate of rotifers to near 0. Yet, gut content analysis regularly (though not very frequently) revealed the remains of a rotifer, B. calyciflorus, in the digestive tract of an E. gracilis. We thus proved the ability of E. gracilis to feed on rotifers, even when these were offered in a diet mixed with algae.

Affiliations: 1: Faculty of Science, University of South Bohemia, Branišovská 31, CZ-370 05, České Budějovice, Czech Republic


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