Standard Talk (15 mins) Australian Society for Fish Biology Conference 2022

The influenced of food availability on the capacity for thermal plasticity in a coral reef fish (#93)

Jennifer Donelson 1 , Shannon McMahon 1 2
  1. ARC CoE for Coral Reef Studies, James Cook University, Townsville, QLD, Australia
  2. Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University, Okinawa, Japan

While many tropical fish species and populations exhibit high sensitivity and negative impacts from acute ocean warming, with development and cross-generational exposure to warming thermal acclimation can occur. One reason why beneficial plasticity or acclimation to environmental change does not always occur is due to the expected costs of making phenotypic changes. In laboratory experiments, fish are generally fed to satiation and therefore have ample energy to produce phenotypic changes. This research explores whether reducing food resources to the current generation influences whether and how thermal plasticity occurs. This research found that food availability interacts with developmental thermal conditions, and the effect of food was greatest at elevated temperatures. The effects of grandparental fish’s thermal experience on the current generation differed depending on the temperature and food conditions experience by the grand offspring (i.e., transgenerational plasticity). Furthermore, the effects of developmental warming and food availability differed depending on trait.