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Prey amino acid composition affects rates of protein synthesis and N wastage of a freshwater carnivore

journal contribution
posted on 2020-01-01, 00:00 authored by Georgia DwyerGeorgia Dwyer, R J Stoffels, E Silvester, G N Rees
Humans modify prey communities and hence alter the availability of nutrients to wild carnivores. Such changes in amino acid 'landscapes' are likely to affect the growth of individuals, and potentially the success of populations. This study aimed to determine whether amino acid composition of animal prey alone affects protein synthesis efficiency and N wastage of a freshwater carnivore. River blackfish (Gadopsis marmoratus) were fed two diets differing only in amino acid composition: the first diet was formulated to match the composition of the fish themselves, representing a balanced 'ideal protein', whereas the second diet was produced to match the composition of a prey item, namely the shrimp Macrobrachium australiense. By measuring the postprandial increase in metabolic rate (specific dynamic action) and ammonia excretion, it was found that the amino acid composition of the fish diet was associated with an increase in protein synthesis, whereas the shrimp diet doubled the amount of dietary amino acids directed to pathways of catabolic energy production and N wastage. This study adds to the stoichiometric ecology literature by showing that changes in the amino acid composition of food webs could affect carnivore growth and nutrient cycling.

History

Journal

Marine and freshwater research

Volume

71

Issue

2

Pagination

229 - 237

Publisher

CSIRO

Location

Clayton, Vic.

ISSN

1323-1650

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

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