AbstractPrevious experimental studies suggest that the production of sound associated with expelling gas from an open swimbladder may play a role in communication. This would suggest non-random gas release. We used deployed echosounders to study patterns of gas release among a fjord population of sprat (Sprattus sprattus). The echosounder records concurrently revealed individual fish and their release of gas. The gas release primarily occurred at night, partly following recurrent temporal patterns, but also varying between nights. In testing for non-randomness, we formulated a data-driven simulation approach. Non-random gas release scaled with the length of the analyzed time intervals from 1 min to 6 h, and above 30 min the release events in more than 50% of the intervals were significantly connected.
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