What is on the menu? Feeding, consumption and cannibalism in exploited stocks of the jumbo squid Dosidicus gigas in south-central Chile

Claudia Bruno, Claudio F. Cornejo, Rodrigo Riera, Christian M. Ibáñez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Only few studies on the feeding and cannibalism behavior of the jumbo squid have been conducted in the Humboldt Current System despite this species is currently considered an important economic resource. It is possible that the diet of this ommastrephid squid varies throughout the year, among areas and body size. Therefore, we herein collected jumbo squids from commercial catches during January to December 2014 using purse-seine nets. The stomach contents were analyzed in terms of frequency of occurrence, number, and weight of prey items. The diet composition was analyzed using Detrended Correspondence Analysis. The variation of jumbo squid diet composition was evaluated from different biological and temporal predictors (sex, maturity, body size and months), considering and analyzing cannibalism. Daily ration was estimated using three methods to calculate consumption and consumption/biomass ratio. Our results suggest that there are significant differences in diet throughout the year, among sizes, and between sexes, however, no differences were found according to the interactions of these factors, except for the interaction between sex and month. In addition, significant differences were detected for each factor (sex, month and body size) when evaluating cannibalism, although these differences were only significant when factors were evaluated independently. Body size was the best predictor of diet composition, richness and cannibalism variation. Stomach content weight was highly biased due to the advanced level of digestion, which in turn biased the diet based on weight, daily ration and consumption analyses. In this sense, the bioenergetic model based on water temperature fitted better than models based on stomach content weight and body mass. These results showed that D. gigas mostly predates on crustaceans and cephalopods, which contrasts with most ecosystem models that suggest that this species highly predates on commercially-exploited fish species.

Original languageEnglish
Article number105722
JournalFisheries Research
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2021


  • Cannibalism
  • Consumption
  • Daily ration
  • Diet
  • Jumbo squid

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aquatic Science


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