Anguilla marmorata larval migration plasticity as revealed by otolith microstructural analysis

Abstract : The oceanic early-life history of Anguilla marmorata was examined in the southwestern Indian Ocean in Mayotte, Mauritius, and Reunion islands through otolith microstructural analysis. The study of the hatching dates, the first feeding check diameter (FFD), the leptocephalus (LD) and metamorphosis (MD) durations, the age at recruitment (AR), and the leptocephalus otolith growth rate (OGR) of glass eels revealed great variations in early-life traits and relationships between them. An agglomerative nesting analysis discriminated three early-life histories, differently represented according to the locality: (i) fast migrants with short LD, short MD, young AR, large FFD, and high OGR dominated in Reunion and Mayotte; (ii) midspeed migrants with intermediate LD, MD, AR, FFD, and OGR dominated in Mauritius; (iii) slow migrants with long LD, long MD, old AR, small FFD, and low OGR were recorded only in Mauritius. All possible strategies were not observed and therefore not successful at the sampling time. However, several were simultaneously expressed, which suggests larval migration plasticity at the population level. This evidence is crucial information regarding both the species dispersal capabilities and the evolution from short-migratory tropical species towards long-migratory temperate ones in the genus Anguilla.
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Elodie Reveillac, Eric Feunteun, Patrick Berrebi, Pierre-Alexandre Gagnaire, Raymonde Lecomte-Finiger, et al.. Anguilla marmorata larval migration plasticity as revealed by otolith microstructural analysis. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, NRC Research Press, 2008, 65 (10), pp.2127-2137. ⟨10.1139/F08-122⟩. ⟨halsde-00367277⟩



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