Daphnia magna fitness during low food supply under different water temperature and brownification scenarios

Submitted: 12 February 2016
Accepted: 10 October 2016
Published: 7 November 2016
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Much of our current knowledge about non-limiting dietary carbon supply for herbivorous zooplankton is based on experimental evidence and typically conducted at ~1 mg C L-1 and ~20°C. Here we ask how low supply of dietary carbon affects somatic growth, reproduction, and survival of Daphnia magna and test effects of higher water temperature (+3 °C relative to ambient) and brownification (3X higher than natural water color; both predicted effects of climate change) during fall cooling. We predicted that even at very low carbon supply (~5µg C L-1), higher water temperature and brownification will allow D. magna to increase its fitness. Neonates (<24 h old) were incubated with lake seston for 4 weeks (October-November 2013) in experimental bottles submerged in outdoor mesocosms to explore effects of warmer and darker water. Higher temperature and brownification did not significantly affect food quality, as assessed by its fatty acid composition. Daphnia exposed to both increased temperature and brownification had highest somatic growth and were the only that reproduced, and higher temperature caused the highest Daphnia survival success. These results suggest that even under low temperature and thus lower physiological activity, low food quantity is more important than its quality for D. magna fitness.



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Supporting Agencies

Austrian Science Fund and BiodivERsA (project I 1057-B25 to MJK)

How to Cite

Gall, Andrea, Martin J. Kainz, and Serena Rasconi. 2016. “Daphnia Magna Fitness During Low Food Supply under Different Water Temperature and Brownification Scenarios”. Journal of Limnology 76 (1). https://doi.org/10.4081/jlimnol.2016.1450.

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