Impacts of domestication on angling vulnerability of common carp, Cyprinus carpio: the role of learning, foraging behaviour and food preferences

Authors

  • T. Klefoth,

    Corresponding author
    • Department of Biology and Ecology of Fishes, Leibniz-Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries, Berlin, Germany
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  • T. Pieterek,

    1. Inland Fisheries Management Laboratory, Department for Crop and Animal Sciences, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Berlin, Germany
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  • R. Arlinghaus

    1. Department of Biology and Ecology of Fishes, Leibniz-Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries, Berlin, Germany
    2. Inland Fisheries Management Laboratory, Department for Crop and Animal Sciences, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Berlin, Germany
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Correspondence: Thomas Klefoth, State Sport Fisher Association of Lower Saxony (Landessportfischerverband Niedersachsen), Bürgermeister-Stümpel-Weg 1, 30457 Hannover, Germany (e-mail: t.klefoth@lsfv-nds.de)

Abstract

Domestication in fish selection increases vulnerability to angling. Two common garden-reared genotypes of common carp, Cyprinus carpio L., differing in degree of domestication (highly domesticated mirror carp and less domesticated scaled carp) were exposed to fishing in two environments (i.e. ponds and laboratory tanks) to quantify vulnerability to angling. Foraging behaviour and food preferences were quantified to explain variation in angling vulnerability in a mechanistic manner. Domesticated mirror carp were more vulnerable to angling gear than scaled carp in both environments, which was related to greater food intake and bolder-foraging behaviour. Independent of genotype, catchability decreased and time until first capture increased over fishing time, indicating learned hook avoidance. No differences were observed in food preferences among genotypes, rendering bait-selective feeding an unlikely explanation for differential vulnerability to angling. It was concluded that vulnerability to angling has a genetic basis in carp and that boldness plays a paramount role in explaining why more domesticated genotypes are more easily captured by angling.

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