Artículos de revistas
Electrolocation-communication discharges of the fish Gymnotus carapo L. (Gymnotidae: Gymnotiformes) during behavioral sleep
Brazilian Journal of Medical and Biological Research. Associação Brasileira de Divulgação Científica, v. 32, n. 10, p. 1223-1228, 1999.
Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP)
Technical problems have hampered the study of sleep in teleosts. The electrical discharges of Gymnotus carapo L. (Gymnotidae: Gymnotiformes) were monitored to evaluate their ease and reliability as parameters to study sleep. The discharges were detected by electrodes immersed in a glass aquarium and were recorded on a conventional polygraph. G. carapo showed conspicuous signs of behavioral sleep. During these periods, opercular beat rates were counted, electric discharges recorded, and the sharp discharge increase (SDI) of the orienting reflex was investigated. All 20 animals monitored maintained electrical discharges during behavioral sleep. The discharge frequencies during sleep (50.3 ± 10.4 Hz) were not significantly different from those observed when the fish was awake and inactive (57.2 ± 12.1 Hz) (Wilcoxon matched-pairs signed-ranks test, P>0.05). However, the SDI, which was prevalent in the awake fish, was not observed during periods of behavioral sleep. Additional observations showed that the species had cannibalistic habits. When presented with electrical discharges from a conspecific, the sleeping fish showed an initial decrease or pause in discharge frequency, while the awake fish did not have this response. We conclude that the electrical discharges of G. carapo were not conspicuous indicators of behavioral sleep. Discharges may have been maintained during sleep for sensory purposes, i.e., conspecific detection and avoidance of cannibalistic attacks.