New paper on behavior of copepods feeding on toxic algae

Wednesday 21 Dec 16
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Thomas Kiørboe
Professor
DTU Aqua
+45 35 88 34 01

How do copepods react to toxic prey and what’s the effect on survival of both prey and predator?

With an increasing occurrence of harmful algae blooms, algal toxins are a serious threat to fish, sea birds, marine mammals and even humans. Copepods, play a crucial role in transferring toxins from algae to higher trophic levels, however, their responses to toxic algae remain an open question. In this paper, we describe 4 distinctly different feeding behavioral responses of a copepod, Temora longicornis, to different strains of toxic dinoflagellates, Alexandrium spp. The analysis is based on videos filmed by a high speed camera. We assume that the observed various prey aversion responses may have very different implications to the prey and their ability to form blooms: consumed but regurgitated cells are dead, captured but rejected cells survive and may give the prey a competitive advantage, while reduced feeding activity of the grazer may be equally beneficial to the prey and their competitors. These behaviors are not related to lytic activity or overall content and composition of paralytic shellfish toxins (PSTs), which suggests that other cues are responsible for the responses.

Read the paper online here

Jiayi Xu, Per Juel Hansen, Lasse Tor Nielsen, Bernd Krock, Urban Tillmann, Thomas Kiørboe. Distinctly different behavioral responses of a copepod, Temora longicornis, to different strains of toxic dinoflagellates, Alexandrium spp. Harmful Algae, 2017, 62:  .

http://www.oceanlifecentre.dk/news/Nyhed?id=%7B09420E86-C4D8-4C29-8474-D8F7D3DC3E1C%7D
24 MAY 2019