Modelling the ingress of a temperate fish larva into a nursery coastal lagoon

Baptista, Vânia, Leitão, Francisco, Morais, Pedro, Teodósio, Maria Alexandra, and Wolanski, Eric (2020) Modelling the ingress of a temperate fish larva into a nursery coastal lagoon. Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science, 235. 106601.

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The development of sensorial acuity and swimming capabilities of coastal fish larvae and their responses to coastal nursery cues are essential for recruitment success. Most studies of the response of fish larvae to environmental cues and their recruitment into nursery areas have focused on coral reef fish and only a few studies focused on fish species from temperate regions. The Sense Acuity and Behavioural (SAAB) Hypothesis proposes that fish larvae in temperate regions can sense nursery cues and ingress into estuarine ecosystems by using several active swimming strategies. We tested the SAAB hypothesis by studying the ingress of a temperate fish larvae – white seabream Diplodus sargus (Linnaeus, 1758) – into a coastal nursery area, the Ria Formosa Lagoon, Portugal. We combined the results from studies of sensory acuity, swimming capabilities and personality traits of post-flexion larvae with a fine-scale biophysical model to quantify the ingress of the white seabream into the lagoon. Data showed that the location of spawning sites and the directional swimming capabilities are both important for the successful ingress of white seabream larvae into the lagoon. Recruitment was higher when spawning grounds were located in areas with depths between 15.1 and 16.9 m and when post-flexion larvae used their directional swimming capabilities. The larvae ingressed passively into the lagoon with the tidal currents at pre-flexion stage and actively by using their directional swimming capabilities at post-flexion stage. Directional swimming also prevented larval export into the coastal area. When spawning occurred away from the seagrass smell plume emanating from the lagoon, the fish larvae were advected away and lost at sea. This work demonstrated the relevance of combining fish larvae behaviour and oceanography processes in modelling the dispersion of fish larvae to estimate recruitment.

Item ID: 62256
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1096-0015
Keywords: Fish larvae; Directional swimming; Smell plume; Individual-based models; Recruitment
Copyright Information: © 2020 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Funders: Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT)
Projects and Grants: FCT UID/Multi/04326/2019, FCT SFRH/BD/104209/2014), FCT DL57/2016/CP1361/CT0008, CLIMFISH project n2/SAICT/2017
Date Deposited: 12 Feb 2020 03:07
FoR Codes: 37 EARTH SCIENCES > 3707 Hydrology > 370704 Surface water hydrology @ 50%
44 HUMAN SOCIETY > 4408 Political science > 440805 Environmental politics @ 50%
SEO Codes: 91 ECONOMIC FRAMEWORK > 9199 Other Economic Framework > 919902 Ecological Economics @ 50%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9603 Climate and Climate Change > 960301 Climate Change Adaptation Measures @ 50%
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