Diet of the Atlantic bonito Sarda sarda (Bloch, 1793) in the Northeast Aegean Sea

N. Fletcher*, I. E. Batjakas, G. J. Pierce

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Seasonal and size-related patterns in feeding habits of the Atlantic bonito (Sarda sarda) in the Northeast Aegean were investigated over a 2-year period May 2007 - May 2009 based on analysis of stomach contents of 134 fish ranging from 266655 mm fork length. The fish were caught by purse-seine boats operating around the islands of Lesvos and Chios (Greece). Of the stomachs examined, 46% contained at least one prey item and significant seasonal and size-related patterns were found in the occurrence of non-empty stomachs. The overall diet composition in terms of numerical importance was 71% fish, 28% crustaceans and 1% cephalopods. Of the fish, Engraulidae (Engraulis encrasicolus) were the dominant prey taxon, followed by Centracanthidae (Spicara spp.) and then Clupeidae (Sardina pilchardus). Statistically significant monthly variation in diet was apparent, suggesting that S. sarda take advantage of seasonally abundant prey fish in the study area, but no size-related variation in the importance of the main prey species was detected.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1030-1035
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Applied Ichthyology
Issue number5
Early online date27 Mar 2013
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2013


  • tunny euthynnus-alletteratus
  • Central Mediterranean Sea
  • Southern Tyrrhenian Sea
  • feeding-habits
  • oceanographic conditions
  • thunnus-alalunga
  • albacore
  • ecology
  • food


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