Get access

The Effects of Starvation on Crayfish Responses to Alarm Odor


Brian A. Hazlett, Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA. E-mail:


The effect of starvation on responses to alarm odor was tested with individuals of an invasive and a native species of crayfish. I predicted that chemical predator cues would inhibit feeding less in starving than well-fed animals, and that this decrease would be stronger in a native compared with an invasive species. Individuals were exposed to food odor and then alarm odor after 3 and 10 d of starvation. The inhibition of food-related behavior patterns was similar on the 2 d of testing for individuals of the invasive species, Orconectes rusticus. Individuals of O. virilis showed a significant reduction in the effects of alarm odor detection on day 10 compared with day 3 of starvation. The lack of a change in responses to alarm odors between days of testing by individuals of O. rusticus may be because they are more responsive to alarm odors than individuals of O. virilis. This behavioral difference could contribute to the successful range extension of O. rusticus.