Role of morphometry in determining the feeding success of small freshwater fish species: Multivariate analysis of Amblypharyngodon mola, Puntius ticto, and Esomus danricus          [RESEARCH ARTICLE]

  • Sudarshana Nandi
  • Surjya Kumar Saikia
Keywords: morphoecology, feeding strategy, regression analysis, gape limitation, feeding ecology


Factor and multiple regression analysis were used to extract the morphometric variables that contributed to feeding success in three small freshwater fishes. Of the first two factors, factor 1, showed high loading of gut weight (GW), length of the upper (UJ), and lower jaws (LJ) in mola, Amblypharyngodon mola (Hamilton), and GW and vertical mouth opening (VMO) in punti, Puntius ticto (Hamilton). In darikana, Esomus danricus (Hamilton), GW, horizontal mouth opening (HMO), and VMO were highly loaded on factor 2. Gut length (GL) was closely associated with GW of all three species. Subsequently, variables with high loading on factors 1 or 2 were subjected to multiple regression analysis to observe their effect on feeding success, considering GW as the dependent variable and the extracted variables as the independent variable. In A. mola, HMO and GL influenced GW, whereas in P. ticto, only GL determined GW in the fish. In E. danricus, GL, VMO, and HMO exerted a low effect on GW. Exceptionally, the present study suggested that feeding success in small fishes is largely determined by UJ, LJ, and GL or mouth openings.


S. Nandi, S.K Saikia [+]
Aquatic Ecology and Fish Biology Laboratory
Department of Zoology
Visva Bharati University, Santiniketan, Bolpur,
West Bengal, India – 731235
e-mail:, tel: +91 9475849511