Food Habits Database
The surveys were designed to monitor trends in abundance and distribution and to provide data and samples to study the ecology of the large number of fish and invertebrate species inhabiting the Northeast U.S. continental shelf.
The Food Habits Database has two major sources of data. The first, and most extensive, is the standard Northeast Fisheries Science Center Bottom Trawl Surveys Program. During these surveys, food habits data are collected for a variety of species. Additionally, "process-oriented" cruises are conducted periodically to address specific questions related to the feeding ecology of the fish in the ecosystem.
Both sources provide primarily stomach content information; composition, total and individual prey weights or volumes, and length of prey. Additional information associated with each fish predator is also collected. Other databases encompass the prey fields of these fish and include zooplankton, ichthyoplankton, and benthic surveys.