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AEI 13:177-188 (2021)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/aei00398

Elevated temperatures increase growth and enhance foraging performances of a marine gastropod

Nan Hu1,2,3,#, Zhenglin Yu1,4,5,6,7,#, Yajuan Huang2,3, Dapeng Liu3,8, Fang Wang3, Tao Zhang1,4,5,6,7,*

1CAS Key Laboratory of Marine Ecology and Environmental Sciences, Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Qingdao 266071, Shandong, PR China
2Aquatic Ecology, Department of Biology, Lund University, Lund 221 00, Sweden
3The Key Laboratory of Mariculture, Ministry of Education, Ocean University of China, Qingdao 266003, Shandong, PR China
4Laboratory for Marine Ecology and Environmental Science, Qingdao Pilot National Laboratory for Marine Science and Technology, Qingdao 266237, PR China
5Center for Ocean Mega-Science, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Qingdao 266071, PR China
6CAS Engineering Laboratory for Marine Ranching, Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Qingdao 266071, PR China
7Shandong Province Key Laboratory of Experimental Marine Biology, Qingdao 266071, PR China
8School of Biology, Georgia Institute of Technology, 310 Ferst Drive, Atlanta, Georgia 30332-0230, USA
*Corresponding author:
#These authors contributed equally to this article

ABSTRACT: The oceans continue to warm due to rising atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations. Most climate-change studies of aquaculture species use temperature changes based on coarse-resolution climate models and without considering thermal ranges of an animal. Coarse-resolution climate models are generated by global-scale data, which is insufficient to capture the conditions of coastal areas where most aquaculture activity occurs. Therefore, ocean warming research on coastal organisms requires a more comprehensive design to include broad temperature gradients. By using the ecologically and commercially important coastal whelk Rapana venosa, we combined long-term and short-term experiments and selected 4 temperature treatments (19, 23, 27, and 30°C) to simulate different scenarios to test ocean warming effects on growth rates and foraging performances of whelks. We found that elevated temperature within the whelk’s thermal range (23 and 27°C) significantly increased growth rates and enhanced foraging performances of marine whelks when compared to the current temperature (19°C). Conversely, the whelk’s performance collapsed at 30°C in terms of both growth and foraging behavior. Our research clearly shows that local conditions and the tolerance range of a species must be considered to develop meaningful information for testing the effects of a changing climate. Our study suggests that rapa whelks may increase their feeding and reach larger sizes during warmer periods. Moreover, our study may provide a foundation for future climate research on aquaculture species.


KEY WORDS: Ocean warming · Growth rate · Foraging performance · Predator-prey interactions · Rapana venosa · RCP 8.5


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Cite this article as: Hu N, Yu Z, Huang Y, Liu D, Wang F, Zhang T (2021) Elevated temperatures increase growth and enhance foraging performances of a marine gastropod. Aquacult Environ Interact 13:177-188. https://doi.org/10.3354/aei00398

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