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Effects of body condition and water temperature on Anguilla anguilla glass eels migratory behavior

Abstract : Glass eels arriving from the sea use alternative migratory tactics, leading either to the colonization of rivers or to an early settlement in marine or estuarine habitats. In the field, the migration may be environmentally affected by water temperature and the migratory behavior could be physiologically dependent on the body condition (energetic status). To investigate how these environmental and physiological effects on the migration are behaviorally mediated, we experimentally tested the effects of changes in water temperature and body condition on locomotor activity (upstream swimming) and salinity preference of Anguilla anguilla glass eels. Low water temperature reduced significantly both locomotor activity and preference for freshwater, in accordance with field data showing that low water temperatures hinder both the estuarine migration and river recruitment. Glass eels switched from a freshwater- towards a saltwater-preference as their body condition decreased, confirming that the energetic status may affect the migratory behavior. We suggest that, in the wild, this condition-dependent change in salinity preference of low body condition glass eels induces an early settlement in marine or estuarine habitats. Such a behavioral shift, stopping the energy expenditure linked to river-oriented migratory behavior, may be adaptive by limiting the probability of death due to exhaustion. Our results show that the glass eel migratory behavior, through locomotor activity and salinity preference, may be controlled by interacting physiological and environmental factors
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Contributor : Eric Edeline Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Wednesday, January 14, 2009 - 8:55:07 PM
Last modification on : Thursday, March 17, 2022 - 10:08:35 AM


  • HAL Id : bioemco-00353186, version 1
  • PRODINRA : 250055


Eric Edeline, Patrick Lambert, Christian Rigaud, Pierre Elie. Effects of body condition and water temperature on Anguilla anguilla glass eels migratory behavior. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, Elsevier, 2006, 331 (2), pp.217-225. ⟨bioemco-00353186⟩



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