13 Pages

Shoaling and Schooling Behavior of Fishes

The irridescent, glinting bodies of fish swim­ ming together in a school, darting and wheel­ ing in formation almost as a single body, have attracted the attention of naturalists and poets from ancient times. Behavioral scientists at­ tempting to unravel the rules that govern the evolution, form, and function of this fascinat­ ing behavior are, the author can attest, driven by the same sense of wonder. We are lucky that major advances in our scientific insight of this phenomenon have been made over the past 15 years; a recent review is given by Pitcher and Parrish (1993). This article is a brief summary of our current understanding of the evolution, structure, and functions of fish shoals, together with the application of this knowledge to hu­ man welfare.