Field estimates of planktonic larval duration in a marine invertebrate

Burgess, Scott C. and Marshall, Dustin J. (2011) Field estimates of planktonic larval duration in a marine invertebrate. Marine Ecology-Progress Series, 440 151-161. doi:10.3354/meps09374

Author Burgess, Scott C.
Marshall, Dustin J.
Title Field estimates of planktonic larval duration in a marine invertebrate
Journal name Marine Ecology-Progress Series   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0171-8630
Publication date 2011-10-28
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.3354/meps09374
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 440
Start page 151
End page 161
Total pages 11
Place of publication Oldendorf, Germany
Publisher Inter-Research
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Planktonic larval durations (PLDs) affect the ecology and evolution of benthic marine populations through their effects on dispersal distance, the spread of sibling larvae, the level of larval mortality, and population connectivity. Despite the importance of PLDs, field estimates of PLDs in marine invertebrates are rare and restricted to specific taxa. The size of the first postmetamorphic feeding structure (the ancestrula lophophore) in Bugula neritina has been shown previously to decline with increases in larval duration. We hypothesised that if the relationship between larval duration and the size of the ancestrula lophophore can be estimated in the laboratory, then it should be possible to infer the PLD of B. neritina settlers in the field. We manipulated the length of the larval period in the laboratory and quantified the relationship between larval duration and the volume of the ancestrula lophophore. We then measured the size of lophophores in field-settled individuals at 2 sites on multiple days over a 2 yr period, and predicted their planktonic durations based on our laboratory-derived classifications. The average percentage of individuals in the field with short (0 to 1.5 h), intermediate (1.5 to 6.5 h), and long (6.5 to 32 h) PLDs was 54, 27, and 19%, respectively. Despite being competent to settle upon release from the colony, a significant proportion of settlers in the field experienced metamorphic delays that would incur significant post-settlement costs. Furthermore there was a positive relationship between settlement density and the proportion of settlers in any one cohort that had experienced short PLDs. The extended planktonic periods that we predicted are likely to affect the dynamics of adult pop - ulations directly via reductions in settlement density and indirectly via reductions in the postsettlement performance of individuals that experienced a metamorphic delay before settling.
Keyword Delayed metamorphosis
Larval quality
Larval mortality
Population connectivity
Coral-Reef Fish
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2012 Collection
School of Biological Sciences Publications
School of Medicine Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 8 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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