Oecologia

, Volume 168, Issue 2, pp 393–404 | Cite as

Selective consequences of catastrophes for growth rates in a stream-dwelling salmonid

  • Simone Vincenzi
  • Alain J. Crivelli
  • Jarl Giske
  • William H. Satterthwaite
  • Marc Mangel
Population ecology - Original Paper

Abstract

Optimal life histories in a fluctuating environment are likely to differ from those that are optimal in a constant environment, but we have little understanding of the consequences of bounded fluctuations versus episodic massive mortality events. Catastrophic disturbances, such as floods, droughts, landslides and fires, substantially alter the population dynamics of affected populations, but little has been done to investigate how catastrophes may act as a selective agent for life-history traits. We use an individual-based model of population dynamics of the stream-dwelling salmonid marble trout (Salmo marmoratus) to investigate how trade-offs between the growth and mortality of individuals and density-dependent body growth can lead to the maintenance of a wide or narrow range of individual variation in body growth rates in environments that are constant (i.e., only demographic stochasticity), variable (i.e., environmental stochasticity), or variable with catastrophic events that cause massive mortalities (e.g., flash floods). We find that occasional episodes of massive mortality can substantially reduce persistent variability in individual growth rates. Lowering the population density reduces density dependence and allows for higher fitness of more opportunistic strategies (rapid growth and early maturation) during the recovery period.

Keywords

Catastrophes Selection Growth rates Marble trout Variable environment 

Notes

Acknowledgments

Simone Vincenzi and Jarl Giske worked on this paper while visiting the Center for Stock Assessment Research (CSTAR), a partnership between the Fisheries Ecology Division, Southwest Fisheries Science Center, NOAA Fisheries, and the University of California Santa Cruz. Simone Vincenzi was supported by a grant from “Fondazione Luigi e Francesca Brusarosco.” The authors thank Dusan Jesensek and the Tolmin Angling Association for field work. The authors thank Joel C. Trexler and two anonymous reviewers for helpful comments that greatly improved the manuscript.

Supplementary material

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Supplementary material 1 (DOC 97 kb)
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Supplementary material 2 (DOC 396 kb)
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Supplementary material 3 (DOC 67 kb)
442_2011_2096_MOESM4_ESM.doc (58 kb)
Supplementary material 4 (DOC 58 kb)

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Simone Vincenzi
    • 1
    • 4
    • 5
  • Alain J. Crivelli
    • 2
  • Jarl Giske
    • 3
  • William H. Satterthwaite
    • 4
  • Marc Mangel
    • 3
    • 4
  1. 1.Dipartimento di Scienze AmbientaliUniversità degli Studi di ParmaParmaItaly
  2. 2.Station Biologique de la Tour du Valat, Le SambucArlesFrance
  3. 3.Department of BiologyUniversity of BergenBergenNorway
  4. 4.Department of Applied Mathematics and Statistics, Center for Stock Assessment ResearchUniversity of CaliforniaSanta CruzUSA
  5. 5.MRAG AmericasCapitolaUSA

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