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Temperature has a reduced effect on routine metabolic rates of juvenile shortnose sturgeon (Acipenser brevirostrum)


This study examined the effects of acclimation temperature (10, 15, 20, or 25 °C) and an acute exposure to various temperatures on the routine metabolism of juvenile (~11 g) shortnose sturgeon (Acipenser brevirostrum). For the acclimation experiment, the minimum, mean, and maximum routine metabolic rates were established for sturgeon at each temperature. Mean routine metabolic rates for 10, 15, 20, and 25 °C were 134, 277, 313, and 309 mg O2 kg−1 h−1, respectively, with significant differences occurring between 10 and 15, 10 and 20, and 10 and 25 °C. For the acute exposure, similar patterns and significant differences were observed. Temperature quotient (Q 10) values indicate that the greatest effect of temperature occurred between 10 and 15 °C for both the acclimation and acute temperature experiments. In addition, the effect of temperature on the metabolic rate of sturgeon was nearly negligible between 15 and 25 °C. These results suggest that juvenile shortnose sturgeon are sensitive to temperature changes at the lower end of the range, and less sensitive in the mid-to-upper temperature range.

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Funding for this research was provided by a Natural Science and Engineering Council Grant of Canada (NSERC) discovery grant to J.D.K. Support was also provided by the MADSAM fish group and the Marguerite and Murray Vaughan Graduate Fellowship in Marine Science to F.M.P. All procedures followed the guidelines of animal use set out by the Canadian Council of Animal Care and were approved by the Institutions Animal Care Committee.

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Correspondence to James D. Kieffer.

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Kieffer, J.D., Penny, F.M. & Papadopoulos, V. Temperature has a reduced effect on routine metabolic rates of juvenile shortnose sturgeon (Acipenser brevirostrum). Fish Physiol Biochem 40, 551–559 (2014).

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  • Temperature
  • Acute
  • Acclimation
  • Oxygen consumption rate
  • Shortnose sturgeon