Disentangling genetic from environmental effects on phenotypic variability of Southern rock lobster (Jasus edwardsii) postlarvae

Villacorta Rath, Cecilia, Green, Bridget S., Gardner, Caleb, Murphy, Nick P., Souza, Carla A., and Strugnell, Jan M. (2022) Disentangling genetic from environmental effects on phenotypic variability of Southern rock lobster (Jasus edwardsii) postlarvae. Ecology and Evolution, 12 (11). e9519.

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Environmental conditions experienced during larval dispersal of marine organisms can determine size-at-settlement of recruits. It is, therefore, not uncommon that larvae undergoing different dispersal histories would exhibit phenotypic variability at recruitment. Here we investigated morphological differences in recently settled southern rock lobster (Jasus edwardsii) recruits, known as pueruli, along a latitudinal and temporal gradient on the east coast of Tasmania, Australia. We further explored whether natural selection could be driving morphological variation. We used double digest restriction-site associated DNA sequencing (ddRADseq) to assess differences in genetic structure of recently settled recruits on the east coast of Tasmania over three months of peak settlement during 2012 (August, September and October). Phenotypic differences in pueruli between sites and months of settlement were observed, with significantly smaller individuals found at the northernmost site. Also, there was a lack of overall genetic divergence; however, significant differences in pairwise FST values between settlement months were observed at the southernmost study site, located at an area of confluence of ocean currents. Specifically, individuals settling into the southernmost earlier in the season were genetically different from those settling later. The lack of overall genetic divergence in the presence of phenotypic variation indicates that larval environmental history during dispersal of J. edwardsii could be a possible driver of the resulting phenotype of settlers.

Item ID: 76811
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2045-7758
Keywords: dispersal history; phenotypic variability; pueruli; recruitment; size-at-settlement
Copyright Information: © 2022 The Authors. Ecology and Evolution published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Funders: Australian Research Council (ARC)
Projects and Grants: ARC LP120200164, ARC DP150101491
Research Data: https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.5mkkwh792
Date Deposited: 20 Nov 2022 23:10
FoR Codes: 31 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 3105 Genetics > 310509 Genomics @ 50%
31 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 3103 Ecology > 310307 Population ecology @ 50%
SEO Codes: 18 ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT > 1805 Marine systems and management > 180599 Marine systems and management not elsewhere classified @ 50%
10 ANIMAL PRODUCTION AND ANIMAL PRIMARY PRODUCTS > 1003 Fisheries - wild caught > 100307 Wild caught rock lobster @ 50%
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