Date Approved

2006

Degree Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Biology

Committee Member

Ulrich Reinhardt, PhD

Committee Member

Allen Kurta, PhD

Committee Member

Cara Shillington, PhD

Abstract

Sea lampreys utilize attachment by suction throughout their life cycle. Despite the importance of this behavior, the role of surface texture in the attachment process has not been fully understood. The goal of this study was to develop a technique to quantitatively examine attachment abilities on surfaces of different texture and then to test whether the lampreys would seek out the surface that best promoted attachment. Results of the first experiment showed that the ability to attach depended on the interaction between a surface’s characteristics and the sea lamprey’s oral disk anatomy. For management applications where lamprey attachment is a concern, this pressure-measurement method would be ideal for surface creation and testing. In the second experiment, sea lampreys displayed little preference among surfaces with varying levels of texture. Repeating this experiment in a high sheer environment may yield more insight into the management implications of surface preference and attachment.

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Biology Commons

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