Strain-related physiological and behavioral effects of Skeletonema marinoi on three common planktonic copepods
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Three strains of the chain-forming diatom Skeletonema marinoi, differing in their production of polyunsaturated aldehydes (PUA) and nutritional food components, were used in experiments on feeding, egg production, hatching success, pellet production, and behavior of three common planktonic copepods: Acartia tonsa, Pseudocalanus elongatus, and Temora longicornis. The three different diatom strains (9B, 1G, and 7J) induced widely different effects on Acartia tonsa physiology, and the 9B strain induced different effects for the three copepods. In contrast, different strains induced no or small alterations in the distribution, swimming behavior, and turning frequency of the copepods. 22:6(n-3) fatty acid (DHA) and sterol content of the diet typically showed a positive effect on either egg production (A. tonsa) or hatching success (P. elongatus), while other measured compounds (PUA, other long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids) of the algae had no obvious effects. Our results demonstrate that differences between strains of a given diatom species can generate effects on copepod physiology, which are as large as those induced by different algae species or groups. This emphasizes the need to identify the specific characteristics of local diatoms together with the interacting effects of different mineral, biochemical, and toxic compounds and their potential implications on different copepod species.
KeywordsSwimming Speed Hatching Success Skeletonema Food Patch Copepod Species
The authors wish to thank the Nordic Marine Academy, the Ministry of Higher Education, Malaysia and University Malaysia Terengganu for funding. We also thank Johanna Bergkvist for providing the Skeletonema marinoi strains; Thomas Kiørboe and Hans Henrik Jacobsen for methodological guidance; Erik Lundberg and Tommy Olofsson for chemical analysis. The use of laboratory facilities at Denmark Technical University is gratefully acknowledged.
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