Influence of phytoplankton diets on the ingestion rate and egg production of Acartia clausi and A. lilljeborgii (Copepoda: Calanoida) from Bahía de La Paz, Gulf of California

Christine Johanna Band-Schmidt, Rocío Pacheco-Chávez, Sergio Hernández-Trujillo


Different phytoplankton diets were tested on Acartia clausi and A. lilljeborgii from Bahía de La Paz to determine their effect on survival, egg production, and ingestion rate. Female copepods were fed diatom strains (Chaetoceros sp., Cylindrotheca closterium, Odontella longicruris, and Dytilum brightwelli), dinoflagellate strains (Scrippsiella sp., Gyrodinium sp., Prorocentrum micans, and P. rhathymum), and one Raphidophyceae (Chattonella sp.). After 24 h of incubation in darkness at 24 °C, survival with various phytoplankton diets was above 91%. Gyrodinium sp. produced the lowest survival in both copepod species (44.5% in A. clausi and 89.6% in A. lilljeborgii). Dinoflagellate diets provided the highest egg production. A. clausi had higher egg production when fed with P. rhathymum, P. micans, Gyrodinium sp., Scrippsiella sp., and Chattonella sp. A. lilljeborgii had a higher egg production with Scrippsiella sp., P. micans, Gyrodinium sp., and Chaetoceros sp. Ingestion rates were higher in both Acartia species with two diatom diets (O. longicruris and Chaetoceros sp.), P. rhathymum and Chattonella sp. These results suggest that both Acartia species respond to nutritional quality of phytoplankton in a short time. Higher ingestion rates did not necessarily result in higher egg production, suggesting that the link between ingestion and egg production may be in what is eaten, rather than in how much. The response in egg production seems to be species specific, but in general was higher with dinoflagellate diets, suggesting a higher food quality compared with diatoms (excepting Chaetoceros sp.).

Palabras clave

Acartia clausi; Acartia lilljeborgii; Bahía de La Paz; egg production; grazing rate.

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