Meeting Abstract

P2.159  Thursday, Jan. 5  The effects of flow on social dynamics of the crayfish, Orconectes propinquus BOURCIER, Timothy*; SOLA GRACIA, Emilia; MARTIN III, Arthur L.; Saginaw Valley State University; University of Rochester; Saginaw Valley State University tmbourci@svsu.edu

Agonism influences the development of social status amongst animal conspecifics. These interactions structure the social dynamics that develop within a population. A variety of factors influence the outcome of social interactions such as size of conspecifics, sex, resource availability, and environmental dynamics. Environmental factors, including flow and shelter availability, dramatically influence and alter fight interactions between individuals, which will influence population social structure. These external factors influence an animal’s decision by modifying signals during communication and an increased resource value may influence competition. Environmental factors influence behavior by altering the agnostic interactions that structure social dynamics. Flow is a very important environmental factor in a lotic environment. We are analyzing the influence flow has on social interactions and the dynamics that develop among a populatoin. The role that flow plays in structuring population dynamics has been understudied. To analyze the effects of flow a 7.569 X 0.991 X 0.175 m3 artificial stream was constructed to run trials on crayfish populations. Trials consisted of populations with 4 size matched (within 10%) male crayfish, Orconectes propinquus. Video analysis was used to observe these interactions over a 72 hour time period. Through video analysis, time spent up and downstream relative to one another was cataloged and quantified. Crayfish were identified by using white liquid correction fluid to mark the carapace. This experiment allowed for the measurement of time spent in a location relative to conspecifics within the trial.