Effect of elevated carbon dioxide on shoal familiarity and metabolism in a coral reef fish

Nadler, Lauren E., Killen, Shaun S., McCormick, Mark I., Watson, Sue-Ann, and Munday, Philip L. (2016) Effect of elevated carbon dioxide on shoal familiarity and metabolism in a coral reef fish. Conservation Physiology, 4 (1). cow052.

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Abstract

Atmospheric CO2 is expected to more than double by the end of the century. The resulting changes in ocean chemistry will affect the behaviour, sensory systems and physiology of a range of fish species. Although a number of past studies have examined effects of CO2 in gregarious fishes, most have assessed individuals in social isolation, which can alter individual behaviour and metabolism in social species. Within social groups, a learned familiarity can develop following a prolonged period of interaction between individuals, with fishes preferentially associating with familiar conspecifics because of benefits such as improved social learning and greater foraging opportunities. However, social recognition occurs through detection of shoal-mate cues; hence, it may be disrupted by near-future CO2 conditions. In the present study, we examined the influence of elevated CO2 on shoal familiarity and the metabolic benefits of group living in the gregarious damselfish species the blue-green puller (Chromis viridis). Shoals were acclimated to one of three nominal CO2 treatments: control (450 μatm), mid-CO2 (750 μatm) or high-CO2 (1000 μatm). After a 4–7 day acclimation period, familiarity was examined using a choice test, in which individuals were given the choice to associate with familiar shoal-mates or unfamiliar conspecifics. In control conditions, individuals preferentially associated with familiar shoal-mates. However, this association was lost in both elevated-CO2 treatments. Elevated CO2 did not impact the calming effect of shoaling on metabolism, as measured using an intermittent-flow respirometry methodology for social species following a 17–20 day acclimation period to CO2 treatment. In all CO2 treatments, individuals exhibited a significantly lower metabolic rate when measured in a shoal vs. alone, highlighting the complexity of shoal dynamics and the processes that influence the benefits of shoaling.

Item ID: 46577
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2051-1434
Keywords: Calming effect, carbon dioxide, familiarity, respiratory physiology, shoaling, social recognition
Additional Information:

© The Author 2016. 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/4.0/), which permits unrestricted reuse, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Funders: Australian Postgraduate Award (APA), International Postgraduate Research Scholarship (IPRS), Lizard Island Reef Research Foundation (LIRRF), Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA), James Cook University (JCU), Australian Research Council (ARC), ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies (CECRS)
Projects and Grants: NERC Advanced Fellowship, JCU Graduate Research Scheme , GBRMPA Science for Management Award, LIRRF Doctoral Fellowship, ARC Future Fellowship, ARC Discovery Grant
Research Data: http://dx.doi.org/10.4225/28/58080af2157bf
Date Deposited: 05 Dec 2016 22:30
FoR Codes: 06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0602 Ecology > 060205 Marine and Estuarine Ecology (incl Marine Ichthyology) @ 50%
05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0501 Ecological Applications > 050101 Ecological Impacts of Climate Change @ 50%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970106 Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences @ 50%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9603 Climate and Climate Change > 960399 Climate and Climate Change not elsewhere classified @ 50%
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