Family planning inDaphnia: resistance to starvation in offspring born to mothers grown at different food levels
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We observed a shift in maternal investment per offspring in clonal cultures of twoDaphnia species. Mothers grown at high food levels produced large clutches of smaller eggs but their offspring could not survive long under starvation conditions. Genetically identical mothers grown at low food levels produced small cultches of larger eggs, and their offspring, albeit low in numbers, were able to survive long periods of starvation. Our data show thatDaphnia mothers are capable of assessing food level and use this information in adjusting their fractional peroffspring allocation of reproductive resources.
Key wordsCladocera Daphnia Food limitation Peroffspring investment Resistance to starvation
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