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Centropages behaviour: Swimming and vertical migration

AuthorsAlcaraz, Miquel ; Saiz, Enric ; Calbet, Albert
Swimming behaviour
Vertical migration
Issue DateFeb-2007
CitationProgress in Oceanography 72(2-3): 121-136 (2007)
AbstractThe evolutionary success of any species living in a variable environment depends on its capacity to enhance the probability of finding food and mates, and escaping predators. In the case of copepods of the genus Centropages, as in all planktonic copepods, their swimming behaviour is closely tied to these vital aspects, and shows a high degree of plasticity and adaptive capacity. Swimming mechanisms of Centropages change radically during development, mainly in the transition between naupliar stages to the 1st copepodite; nauplii do not produce feeding currents, whereas copepodites do. Adults and late developmental stages of C. typicus, C. hamatus and C. velificatus spend most of the time in slow swimming and resting breaks, with occasional and brief fast swimming (escape reactions) and grooming events. Slow swimming is closely related to the creation of feeding currents, and results from the beating of the cephalic appendages in a >fling and clap> manner. The proportion of time allocated to the different swimming activities depends on sensory cues like type and concentration of food, presence of potential mates, light intensity, hydrodynamic flow, etc. The responses of Centropages to changes in flow velocity fluctuations (small-scale turbulence) are similar to the escape responses (fast swimming) triggered by the presence of potential predators. Centropages generally have standard nocturnal vertical migration patterns involving considerable vertical displacements. This behaviour is closely related to the narrow spectral sensitivity and the low intensity threshold of the genus, and has important consequences for the active vertical transport of matter and energy. The variety of responses of Centropages to environmental changes, and in general all the aspects related to its swimming behaviour seem to be controlled by the trade-off between energetic gains (food intake), losses (swimming energy expenditure), and predation risk. Behavioural plasticity and adaptation appear to be the most relevant characteristics for the success of the genus in a wide range of marine environments. © 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved
DescriptionSpecial issue The Biology and Ecology of Centropages typicus.-- 16 pages, 8 figures, 5 tables
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.pocean.2007.01.001
Identifiersdoi: 10.1016/j.pocean.2007.01.001
issn: 0079-6611
Appears in Collections:(ICM) Artículos
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