Mobula kuhlii cleaning station identified at an inshore reef in southern Mozambique

paper3Published on 09. February 2016

Mobula kuhlii cleaning station identified at an inshore reef in southern Mozambique

Calum JG Murie‚Äč, Andrea D Marshall

ABSTRACT :

Cleaning interactions between the short fin devil ray, Mobula kuhlii, and the blue streaked cleaner wrasse, Labroides dimidiatus, were observed at two sites on a single reef in southern Mozambique. Cleaning interactions were filmed and described, with the number and location of interactions recorded and subsequently binned into six distinct body patches. Cleaners preferentially foraged within certain ray body patches, and this was found to vary between the two sites, possibly signifying that variations in a habitats composition can influence cleaning. Mobula kuhlii were not found to clean sympatrically with their close relatives in the Manta genus, implying their cleaning requires a distinct habitat or that niche partitioning is required to stem competition for host cleaner fishes attention. In total, 15 individuals were observed interacting with cleaners, and they never arrived alone, suggesting they may travel to cleaning areas in an aggregative manner.

PeerJ PrePrints 4:e1724v1

SOURCE ( OPEN ACCESS )

 

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