Variation in the dispersal potential of non-feeding invertebrate larvae: the desperate larva hypothesis and larval size

Marshall, D. J. and Keough, M. J. (2003) Variation in the dispersal potential of non-feeding invertebrate larvae: the desperate larva hypothesis and larval size. Marine Ecology-progress Series, 255 145-153. doi:10.3354/meps255145


Author Marshall, D. J.
Keough, M. J.
Title Variation in the dispersal potential of non-feeding invertebrate larvae: the desperate larva hypothesis and larval size
Journal name Marine Ecology-progress Series   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0171-8630
1616-1599
Publication date 2003-01-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.3354/meps255145
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 255
Start page 145
End page 153
Total pages 9
Place of publication Oldendorf, Germany
Publisher Inter-Research
Language eng
Abstract For many species of marine invertebrates, variability in larval settlement behaviour appears to be the rule rather than the exception. This variability has the potential to affect larval dispersal, because settlement behaviour will influence the length of time larvae are in the plankton. Despite the ubiquity and importance of this variability, relatively few sources of variation in larval settlement behaviour have been identified. One important factor that can affect larval settlement behaviour is the nutritional state of larvae. Non-feeding larvae often become less discriminating in their 'choice' of settlement substrate, i.e. more desperate to settle, when energetic reserves run low. We tested whether variation in larval size (and presumably in nutritional reserves) also affects the settlement behaviour of 3 species of colonial marine invertebrate larvae, the bryozoans Bugula neritina and Watersipora subtorquata and the ascidian Diplosoma listerianum. For all 3 species, larger larvae delayed settlement for longer in the absence of settlement cues, and settlement of Bugula neritina larvae was accelerated by the presence of settlement cues, independently of larval size. In the field, larger W subtorquata larvae also took longer to settle than smaller larvae and were more discriminating towards settlement surfaces. These differences in settlement time are likely to result in differences in the distance that larvae disperse in the field. We suggest that species that produce non-feeding larvae can affect the dispersal potential of their offspring by manipulating larval size and thus larval desperation.
Keyword Ecology
Marine & Freshwater Biology
Oceanography
Dispersal Potential
Offspring Size
Maternal Effects
Bugula-neritina Bryozoa
Marine-invertebrates
Delayed Metamorphosis
Balanus-amphitrite
Swimming Duration
Offspring Quality
Energy Content
Egg Size
Settlement
Survival
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Unknown

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Excellence in Research Australia (ERA) - Collection
School of Biological Sciences Publications
Ecology Centre Publications
 
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Created: Mon, 13 Aug 2007, 23:41:07 EST