Food Resource Competition in Southern Appalachian Brook and Rainbow Trout

Food habits of sympatric and allopatric populations of adult brook trout (Salvelinus !ontinalis) and rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) from 4 streams in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park were compared to determine if competition for food resources might explain the apparent exclusion of the former by the latter in Southern Appalachian streams. When diets of brook trout in sympatry with rainbow trout were compared with diets of brook trout in allopatry, there was little significant change in prey composition. Based on this information, exploitation competition for food resources does not seem to play a role in the invasion of rainbow trout into areas of Southern Appalachian streams occupied by brook trout.

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