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Population-specific locomotor phenotypes are displayed by barramundi, Lates calcarifer, in response to thermal stress

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We investigated how thermal stress may alter the locomotor phenotype of barramundi, Lates calcarifer, from genetically distinct northern (low latitude) and southern (high latitude) populations in tropical Australia. Following early growth and development under native (25°C and 30°C) and non-native (20°C and 35°C) temperatures, we observed distinct differences in the swimming performance of northern and southern individuals that were consistent with expectations based on local thermal adaptation. Southern population fish exhibited significantly faster swimming speeds (32.10± 0.33cm·s–1, mass-adjusted mean± 95% confidence limit) than their northern counterparts (28.58± 0.64cm·s–1) under cold-stress (20°C) conditions. Conversely, northern population fish performed significantly better (51.63± 2.1cm·s–1) than their southern counterparts (44.18± 3.11cm·s–1) under heat-stress (35°C) conditions. We conclude that L. calcarifer display locomotor phenotypes thermally adapted to their local environment, with early growth under non-native temperatures leading to significantly reduced phenotypic fitness.

Nous étudions de quelle manière le stress thermique peut modifier le phénotype locomoteur du barramundi, Lates calcarifer, dans des populations génétiquement distinctes du nord (de basse latitude) et du sud (de haute latitude) d’Australie tropicale. Après le début de la croissance et du développement à des températures de leur milieu d’origine (25°C et 30°C) ou non (20°C et 35°C), nous observons de nettes différences dans la performance de nage entre les individus du nord et du sud qui correspondent aux attentes basées sur l’adaptation thermique locale. Les populations du sud ont des vitesses de nage significativement plus élevées (32,10± 0,33cm·s–1, moyenne ajustée à la masse± intervalles de confiance de 95 %) que les populations du nord (28,58± 0,64cm·s–1) dans des conditions de stress au froid (20°C). À l’inverse, les populations de poissons du nord performent significativement mieux (51,63± 2,1cm·s–1) que celles du sud (44,18± 3,11cm·s–1) dans des conditions de stress à la chaleur (35°C). Nous concluons que L. calcarifer possède des phénotypes locomoteurs adaptés thermiquement à leur environnement local et qu’une croissance au début de la vie à des températures autres que celles de son milieu d’origine mène à une réduction significative de la fitness phénotypique.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2010-07-01

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  • Published continuously since 1901 (under various titles), this monthly journal is the primary publishing vehicle for the multidisciplinary field of aquatic sciences. It publishes perspectives (syntheses, critiques, and re-evaluations), discussions (comments and replies), articles, and rapid communications, relating to current research on cells, organisms, populations, ecosystems, or processes that affect aquatic systems. The journal seeks to amplify, modify, question, or redirect accumulated knowledge in the field of fisheries and aquatic science. Occasional supplements are dedicated to single topics or to proceedings of international symposia.
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