Binary patch assessment by goldfish under safe and dangerous conditions

Sundararaj Vijayan, Burt P. Kotler, Lotan Tamar Tov-Elem, William A. Mitchell, Zvika Abramsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Food resources can occur heterogeneously in space or time and differ in their abundances. A forager should be able to determine the value of a patch and choose optimally how to exploit it. However, patch choice and exploitation may be influenced by predation risk. Using the Giving up Densities (GUDs) technique, we evaluated goldfish patch assessment and choice in a binary patch choice experiment. We offered a pair of unequal food patches containing high and low food quantity. We quantified goldfish foraging behavior in the presence and absence of a predator. Goldfish groups equalized the GUDs in the two patches in safe environments but left higher GUDs in the rich patch under predation risk. The results suggest that goldfish can use both “patch assessment rule” and “fixed time rule” to exploit resource patches and trade off food and danger.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)417-421
Number of pages5
JournalBehavioural Processes
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2018


  • Equalization
  • Foraging
  • Giving up densities
  • Goldfish
  • Little egret
  • Patch
  • Predation risk

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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