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Polar Biology

, Volume 21, Issue 5, pp 305–309 | Cite as

Lateral line mediated rheotaxis in the Antarctic fish Pagothenia borchgrevinki

  • Cindy F. Baker
  • John C. Montgomery
ORIGINAL PAPER

Abstract

The sensory basis of rheotaxis was investigated in Pagothenia borchgrevinki utilising a laminar flow chamber. The threshold for P. borchgrevinki to exhibit an unconditioned rheotactic response lay between 1 and 2 cm s−1. Disabling the entire lateral line or the superficial neuromast receptors increased the rheotactic threshold to greater than 5 cm s−1. Pharmacological blocking of the lateral line canal system alone had no effect. This study provides a direct demonstration that the superficial lateral line system is involved in mediating rheotaxis. These results, coupled with previous work on Antarctic fishes, suggest a division of labour exists between the two submodalities of the lateral line system. Superficial neuromasts are more responsive to unmodulated flows (DC) and mediate behaviour such as rheotaxis, whereas canal neuromasts detect acceleration components of modulated flows (AC) and are more concerned with behaviour such as feeding.

Keywords

Laminar Flow Lateral Line Flow Chamber Line System Canal System 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cindy F. Baker
    • 1
  • John C. Montgomery
    • 1
  1. 1.Experimental Biology Research Group, School of Biological Sciences, University of Auckland, Private Bag 92019, Auckland, New Zealand e-mail: c.baker@auckland.ac.nz, Tel.: +64-9-3737599, Fax: +64-9-3737417NZ

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