Comparison of the Length-Weight Relationship of Several Species of Fish From Two Different, But Connected, Habitats

Length and weight data were gathered during a short time-period on several species of fish from a large lake and a connecting marsh canal. The marsh had recently gone dry, forcing the fish to crowd into the canal. Analysis of covariance was used to compare the length-weight relationship of largemouth black bass (Micropterus salmoides) , redear sunfish (Lepomis microlophus) and bluegill (Lepomis macrochirus) from both habitat types. The bass from the canal were found to be significantly heavier for their length than those from the lake. Various possible explanations for this phenomenon are discussed. The author's conclusion is that the most logical explanation for the phenomenon is increased feeding by the bass under these crowded conditions. No detectable difference was found in the length-weight relationship of redear sunfish and bluegill from the two habitats. No chain pickerel (Esox niger) were captured in the lake but several hundred were taken in the canal. The length-weight relationship is also given for this species.

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