Hypoxia tolerance is conserved across genetically distinct sub-populations of an iconic, tropical Australian teleost (Lates calcarifer)

Collins, Geoffrey M., Clark, Timothy D., Rummer, Jodie L., and Carton, Alexander G. (2013) Hypoxia tolerance is conserved across genetically distinct sub-populations of an iconic, tropical Australian teleost (Lates calcarifer). Conservation Physiology, 1 (1). pp. 1-9.

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Tropical coastal systems are particularly prone to periods of environmental hypoxia, which can result from organismal respiration as well as thermal stratification, and may be further exacerbated by anthropogenic disturbances. In this study, we used five genetically distinct sub-populations of Australian barramundi (Lates calcarifer) to examine the extent of intraspecific variability in hypoxia tolerance. Fish were maintained at two temperatures (26 or 36°C), representing the seasonal thermal range for this species across its tropical distribution in Australia. All fish maintained a constant oxygen consumption rate Ṁ(O2) as air saturation of the water decreased from 100% down to a critical oxygen saturation ([O2]crit) of 15.44 ± 3.20 and 21.07 ± 3.92% (means ± SD) at 26 and 36°C, respectively. Mean [O2]crit, used as a performance measure of hypoxia tolerance, did not differ between sub-populations. No differences were found for resting Ṁ(O2) between sub-populations at 26°C, but modest differences were detected between two sub-populations at 36°C (3.36 ± 0.62 and 2.83 ± 0.27 mg O2 kg−1 min−1 for Gladstone and Broome sub-populations, respectively). Resting Ṁ(O2) was lower for sub-populations at 26°C (1.46 ± 0.26 mg O2 kg−1 min−1) than at 36°C (3.10 ± 0.43 mg O2 kg−1 min−1), with a temperature coefficient (Q10) of 2.12 ± 0.30. We conclude that both hypoxia tolerance and resting Ṁ(O2) are conserved across the distribution of barramundi in Australia, which reflects the capacity of this species to cope in environments with large fluctuations in both temperature and dissolved oxygen.

Item ID: 30795
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2051-1434
Keywords: barramundi, climate change, critical oxygen saturation hypoxia, Lates calcarifer, tropical
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© The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press and the Society for Experimental Biology. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/), which permits unrestricted distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Funders: National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility (NCCARF), AIMS@JCU Collaborative Research Program
Research Data: http://dx.doi.org/10.4225/28/58be1a4623491
Date Deposited: 06 Jan 2014 00:59
FoR Codes: 07 AGRICULTURAL AND VETERINARY SCIENCES > 0704 Fisheries Sciences > 070401 Aquaculture @ 50%
07 AGRICULTURAL AND VETERINARY SCIENCES > 0704 Fisheries Sciences > 070405 Fish Physiology and Genetics @ 50%
SEO Codes: 83 ANIMAL PRODUCTION AND ANIMAL PRIMARY PRODUCTS > 8301 Fisheries - Aquaculture > 830102 Aquaculture Fin Fish (excl. Tuna) @ 50%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9603 Climate and Climate Change > 960399 Climate and Climate Change not elsewhere classified @ 50%
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