Date of Award

Summer 1982

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Biological Sciences



Committee Director

Raymond W. Alden

Committee Member

Lloyd Wolfinbarger, Jr.

Committee Member

James F. Matta

Committee Member

Carl W. Erkenbrecher, Jr.

Call Number for Print

Special Collections LD4331.B46 C76


Assimilation of the plant components of Spartina alterniflora detritus by the grass shrimp, Palaemonetes pugio, was investigated in a laboratory feeding study. A new radiolabeling procedure was utilized to label the sterilized detritus with 14C. Organic carbon values were calculated for both S. alterniflora and P. pugio. The grass shrimp were found to assimilate significantly the detritus, with an assimilation efficiency of approximately 14%, and an approximate ingestion rate of 2.508 x l0-4mg C detritus/mg C shrimp hour-l occurred. It is hypothesized that coprophagous activity may be important to the completion of digestion of the plant material and that P. pugio in the wild are able to assimilate the plant components of detritus.


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