Baseline Characterization of the Oregon State University Ocean Sentinel Site: Characteristics of five flatfish species on the Central Oregon coast Public

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  • This study is a preassessment of the ecological status of habitats and species potentially affected by wave energy device installation, focusing on five flatfish species. Butter sole (Isopsetta isolepis), English sole (Parophrys vetulus), Sand sole (Psettichthys melanostictus), Pacific sanddab (Citharichthys sordidus), and Speckled sanddab (Citharichthys stigmaeus) were collected bimonthly from June 2010 to July 2012. Fish were then analyzed and dissected to determine overall and gut condition. Gut contents were also identified to the lowest taxonomic level possible using light microscopy, and then measured for caloric density via bomb calorimetry. Results suggest that Pacific sanddab and Sand sole have similar epibenthic diets, while English sole diets are mainly infaunal prey. Butter sole is an intermediate feeder, sometimes eating infaunal prey, and Speckled sanddab is similarly an intermediate feeder, but different in that it mainly eats infaunal prey. Condition of these fish varied by month, and at times, showed a response to seasonal prey abundances. The caloric density did not vary significantly over “meal” types.
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