Chemotactic orientation to prey by the Atlantic oyster drills Urosalpinx cinerea (Say)
The eastern oyster drill U. cinerea is a shell-boring snail that preys upon numerous species of sessile, shelled, and encrusting invertebrates. Newly hatched, nascent snails were used to develop a powerful bioassay for chemotactic orientation to prey. Specificity of chemotaxis was tested by assaying the response to 25 species of marine invertebrates and fish. Only balanoid barnacles and a mixture of two bryozoan species produced and effluent that was highly attractive to nascent snails. Oysters (Crassostrea virginica ) produced an effluent that was only weakly attractive, evoking at most a 20% response. The mussel Mytilus edulis , commonly preyed upon in nature, did not evoke a significant response.
Williams, LG; Rittschof, D; Wood, L; Carriker, MR
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Journal of Shellfish Research
Univ. Delaware, Coll. Mar. Stud., Lewes, DE 19958, USA