The limited information available on the recruitment dynamics of the Caribbean spiny lobster, Panulirus argus (Latreille, 1804), has long been an issue for biologists. The long pelagic larval stage and the surface circulation in the Caribbean Sea have led many researchers to
hypothesize that Caribbean lobster stocks are demographically open, implying connectivity among stocks in this region. Multiple approaches have been applied to investigate potential stock connectivity in this species, including biophysical modeling and genetic markers. Stable isotope analysis
has proven to be a useful tool to study animal movement, and has been widely applied in studies of both terrestrial and aquatic species. However, this method has never been applied to Caribbean spiny lobster recruits. In the present study, we performed carbon and nitrogen stable isotope analyses
on three sub-stages of the non-feeding pueruli (clear, semi-pigmented, and pigmented), as well as on the feeding, first juvenile stage that settled in the Florida Keys from August 2014 to July 2016. Results indicated that the stable isotope values differed between the feeding and non-feeding
stages. The δ13C and δ15N values of the lunar monthly samples displayed notable temporal variation and oscillated during the 2-yr sampling period. Cluster analyses of the stable isotope values suggested that four clusters could have contributed to the observed
Florida recruits. The results of our study reveal the possibility that the Florida spiny lobster stock receives recruits from multiple source populations outside Florida in addition to self-recruitment.
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Document Type: Research Article
Department of Biological Sciences, Florida International University, 3000 NE 151st Street, MSB 312A, Miami, Florida 33181
Department of Biological Sciences, Florida International University, 3000 NE 151st Street, MSB 312A, Miami, Florida 33181;, Email: [email protected]
Publication date: 01 July 2018
This article was made available online on 30 May 2018 as a Fast Track article with title: "Investigating temporal variation in stable carbon and nitrogen isotope values of Florida Caribbean spiny lobster (Panulirus argus) recruits".
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