The blind shrimp and the macaroni goby - NAD-Lembeh Resort
1. about Goby fish are associated with. 20 different shrimp species. 2. These organisms are in no way related. 3. The shrimp feeds on. The goby fish has a life-saving skill in its relationship talent. Gobies partner with pistol shrimp to help each other survive. They make a burrow. In the goby and pistol shrimp symbiosis, both animals benefit. When they are outside of the burrow, the fish keeps an eye out for predators and warns the goby .
I noticed that the shrimp tended to build their burrows along the bottom glass of the tanks. Steady beating of the abdominal appendages pleopods kept the bottom glass free of sediment. So I set up a gallon tank on a high rack, enabling me to sit below and to observe them through the bottom glass of the tank. The frame of the rack just held the tank around its circumference. To reduce any potential negative impact from light below, I covered my observation chamber with a black curtain.
I took videos or pictures with just a little light that I could switch on. Both species were caught and imported in larger numbers together from Sri Lanka. Amalgamating the couples of fish and shrimp was not an easy task. If same sexes are in a small tank, it often ends in severe trouble—the shrimp are able to kill each other in an aquarium.
Therefore I kept them as far apart as possible in separate tanks until I could identify the sexes of the shrimp female shrimp have a more broad abdomen and more broad pleopods. I also kept the young gobies separated. By changing the partners in one tank, I could easily find out if two specimens would go together, which is the indication for different sexes.
In the next step, I brought both couples together in the observation tank.
Goby shrimp pairs - symbiosis in the sandScubafish News
I kept the interior of the tank simple: The shrimp started building the burrow immediately after I introduced them in a little cup and directed them into a gap I made under a piece of live rock. Then the fish were added. It did not take longer than an hour, and the double couple was together. During the next days, the burrow grew. The shrimp transported all excavated material and pushed it outside the burrow.
They used their claws to push the sand like a little bulldozer. This astonishing skill can only be performed if the goby is out to guard their safety. When the tunnel system grew, the partner behaved differently under subterranean conditions.
The Symbiotic Relationship Between Gobies And Pistol Shrimp
The narrow space in the burrow causes them to squeeze their partners against the burrow wall. The fish tend to wiggle through the burrows with force and no hesitation toward their crustacean partners. Due to the action, parts of the burrow system would often collapse. A fish buried under sand stays there without panic the shrimp can smell it and waits until the shrimp digs it out and begins to repair the burrow.
The main way into the burrow can be up to 2 feet long during the first days of excavation. Soon after, side ways are constructed, which can be as short as 2 inches. They can be driven forward and later form an exit to the surface, or they are extended to form a subterranean chamber. Repeatedly, I could observe the shrimp molting in these chambers. This happens during the night every two to four weeks. The next morning, I would find exuviae close to them, and the female was carrying eggs on her abdominal legs if the shrimp are in good condition, molting and egglaying coincide.
The shrimp cut the exuviae into pieces and transported them out of the burrow as soon as their new test hardened. Hatching of the zoea larvae seems to happen overnight, which makes sense to avoid predators as long as possible. The currents caused by the beating of the pleopods must pump the eggs out of the burrows, where they become a part of the plankton.
The shrimp are omnivorous and collect large pieces of frozen fish positioned close to the entrance of the burrow. They collect the food and transport it immediately into the burrow, where they feed on it.
However, outside they can also be observed eating algae growing on rocks. The shrimp directly gnaw with their mouth pieces on rock where algae is growing. Even more fascinating was that I found parts of the algae Caulerpa racemosa inside the burrow system, though it grew more in another edge of the tank. It took some time until I could observe that the shrimp cut these algae with their claws if they get access to it. However, that can only happen when fish and shrimp are on a coexcursion outside the burrow.
In one instance, after cutting, the shrimp lost the algae due to the currents in the tank.
Symbiosis in the sand with goby shrimp pairs
But the unexpected happened: Some gobies have in an amazing evolutionary process acquired the help of a group of shrimps in order to create shelter in the barren open areas. The shrimps belong to the pistol shrimps of the genus Alpheus, shrimps that often dig burrows. The gobies, in contrast, have excellent vision, and, furthermore, have their pelvic fins extended as a pedestal. In the relationship between the shrimp and the goby, the Alpheus shrimp digs a burrow, which is used as shelter by both the shrimp and the goby.
In turn, the goby spends its day outside the opening of the tunnel, resting on its extended pelvis fins, and keeping carefully watch over the immediate area, alerting the shrimp when danger comes to close, resulting in the shrimps retreat into the burrow. Goby with partner shrimp The goby-shrimp relationship is an example of what is called an obligate mutualism. These gobies are never found without their shrimp partners, and, conversely, the partner shrimp are never found without their goby partners.
As far as I know, coral reef areas and their immediate surroundings offer by far the most examples of such interspecies symbiotic relationships essential for both species survival. The real cool thing about the shrimp-goby symbiosis is that the shrimp and the goby go one step further in their coevolution than most other species pairs.
Despite its minuscule size of only cm, the pistol shrimp can use its claw to create one of the loudest sounds in the ocean. The sound frightens away enemies who feel the powerful sound waves and believe an enormous predator is near. The sound waves are so potent, they can even kill small fish. Although the pistol shrimp is endowed with a life-saving gift, it also has an unfortunate disability -- the pistol shrimp is blind. Fortunately for the pistol shrimp, the goby fish is a perfect complementary partner.
If you search for images of gobies, you will be hard pressed to find a picture of one without a pistol shrimp. The goby fish has a life-saving skill in its relationship talent.
Symbiotic relationship (shrimp and Goby fish) by Daniel Cabrera on Prezi
Gobies partner with pistol shrimp to help each other survive. They make a burrow together in the sand and venture out together when they hunt for food. When the goby spots danger, it wiggles its tail to signal to the pistol shrimp.
The shrimp expertly snaps its claw and frightens away the predator so that both are saved. Without the pistol shrimp, the goby would have no way to fend off hunters. What can we learn from this example in nature? Looks Can Be Deceiving When looking at the pistol shrimp, it is unimaginable that this creature the size of your fingertip can create sound waves that reach a speed of over 60 mph, but it can.
- The blind shrimp and the macaroni goby