, Volume 92, Issue 2, pp 162-165

Predator induced life-history shifts in a freshwater cladoceran

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Life-history theory predicts that maturity and resource allocation patterns are highly sensitive to selective predation. Under reduced adult survival, selection will favour genotypes capable of reproducing earlier, at a smaller size and with a higher reproductive effort. When exposed to water that previously held fish, (size selective predators which prefer larger Daphnia), individuals of Daphnia hyalina reproduced earlier, at a smaller size and had a higher reproductive investment. Hence the prey was able to switch its life history pattern in order to become less susceptible to predation by a specific predator. The cue that evokes the prey response is a chemical released by the predator.