We conducted a manipulative field experiment to determine whether the leaping behaviour of wild juvenile sockeye salmon Oncorhynchus nerka dislodges ectoparasitic sea lice Caligus clemensi and Lepeophtheirus salmonis by comparing sea-lice abundances between O. nerka juveniles prevented from leaping and juveniles allowed to leap at a natural frequency. Juvenile O. nerka allowed to leap had consistently fewer sea lice after the experiment than fish that were prevented from leaping. Combined with past research, these results imply potential costs due to parasitism and indicate that the leaping behaviour of juvenile O. nerka does, in fact, dislodge sea lice. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
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