Degree Name

MS (Master of Science)



Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Joseph R. Bidwell

Committee Members

Thomas F. Laughlin, Rebecca A. Pyles


Predator cues can influence how aquatic organisms respond to anthropogenic contaminants. This study examined the effects of predator cues on behavior, metabolic rate, and sulfate (as Na2SO4) toxicity in amphipods (Gammarus minus). Predator cues included alarm cue (macerated conspecifics) and kairomone from mosquitofish (Gambusia affinis). Amphipods decreased activity and increased time in refuge when exposed to alarm cue, and increased time in refuge when exposed to kairomone. While median lethal concentrations (96-h LC50) were not influenced by predator cues, analysis of dose response curves indicated that kairomone exposure increased amphipod sensitivity to mid-range concentrations of sulfate (500-1,000 mg/L). Amphipods increased oxygen consumption in response to kairomone but not alarm cue. The influence of predator cues on contaminant lethality can be dependent on the type of cue, and physiological endpoints such as metabolic rate may help explain the basis of observed interactions.

Document Type

Dissertation - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.