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Interaction of conspecific cues in Balanus amphitrite Darwin (Cirripedia) settlement assays: Continued argument for the single-larva assay

Lookup NU author(s): Peter Elbourne, Robert Veater, Professor Tony Clare


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Gregariousness in marine invertebrate larvae is an important regulator of benthic community structure. Previous laboratory settlement assays employing Balanus amphitrite Darwin cyprids found gregarious effects with as few as 3 larvae well(-1), together with modulation of such effects by chemical cues. Here, the relationship between settlement rate and larval density was rigorously tested through a fully randomised design. Seawater conditioned with adult B.amphitrite was tested alongside unconditioned seawater to determine the effect of a conspecific cue on gregarious interactions. Gregarious effects were detected in both conditioned and unconditioned seawater at <= 4 larvae well(-1). In untreated seawater, settlement rate increased linearly with larval density, levelling off at densities of >= 10 larvae well(-1). In conditioned seawater, settlement induction was observed at <= 4 larvae well(-1), switching to inhibition at 6, 8 and 10 larvae well(-1), before asymptoting at the highest densities tested. These results advocate the use of individual larvae in laboratory assays that investigate factors stimulating barnacle settlement.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Elbourne PD, Veater RA, Clare AS

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Biofouling

Year: 2008

Volume: 24

Issue: 2

Pages: 87-96

ISSN (print): 0892-7014

ISSN (electronic): 1026-7867

Publisher: Taylor & Francis Ltd.


DOI: 10.1080/08927010701802565


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