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Marine Ecology Progress Series

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MEPS 602:135-153 (2018)  -  DOI:

Trophic environments influence size at metamorphosis and recruitment performance of Pacific oysters

Franck Lagarde1,2,*, Marion Richard1, Béatrice Bec3, Cécile Roques3, Serge Mortreux1, Ismaël Bernard4, Claude Chiantella1, Gregory Messiaen1, Jean-Baptiste Nadalini5, Masakazu Hori6, Masami Hamaguchi6, Stéphane Pouvreau7, Emmanuelle Roque d’Orbcastel1, Réjean Tremblay5

1MARBEC Ifremer, IRD, Univ. Montpellier, CNRS, 34200 Sète, France
2Sorbonne Université, Collège Doctoral, 75005 Paris, France
3MARBEC Ifremer, IRD, Univ. Montpellier, CNRS, 34095 Montpellier, France
4Eureka Modélisation, 22740 Lézardrieux, France
5Université du Québec A Rimouski, Québec 65L 2Z9, Canada
6JFREA, NRIFEIS, 739-0452 Hiroshima, Japan
7LEMAR Ifremer, IRD, CNRS, UBO, 29280 Plouzané, France
*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: Reproduction and recruitment of benthic invertebrates are influenced by the climate and by the ecological structure of marine ecosystems, along with local anthropogenic pressures such as eutrophication or oligotrophication. Using the Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas as a biological model, we tested the hypothesis that the variability in prodissoconch II (PII) size (i.e. size at metamorphosis) depends on ecological functioning. Settlement and recruitment were assessed at 5 sampling sites on the French Mediterranean shellfish farmed Thau lagoon during the main summer recruitment events in 3 consecutive years (2012-2014). Hydrobiological and planktonic analyses were conducted at 3 sampling sites. Our results showed that recruitment was extremely heterogeneous, ranging from 0 to 260 ± 27 SE ind. dm-2 throughout the ecosystem and was linked with variability in PII size, which ranged from 180 to 296 µm. The annual temporal pattern of PII sizes appeared to be controlled by temperature during the settlement period, whereas the spatial pattern depended on phytoplankton biomass and on the trophic functioning of the ecosystem. Smaller PII sizes were significantly correlated with the highest phytoplankton biomass, while larger PII sizes were positively correlated with mixotrophic cryptophyte abundance. We found an inverse relationship between PII size and survival after metamorphosis, showing that recruitment success was associated with smaller PII sizes. Regional climate conditions and local trophic functioning appear to be key factors in metamorphosis and consequently contribute to recruitment heterogeneity. Further studies should be performed in other ecosystems following an oligotrophication trajectory to generalize this result.

KEY WORDS: Larval ecology · Recruitment · Prodissoconch II · Crassostrea gigas · Oligotrophication · Cryptophytes · Thau lagoon

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Cite this article as: Lagarde F, Richard M, Bec B, Roques C and others (2018) Trophic environments influence size at metamorphosis and recruitment performance of Pacific oysters. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 602:135-153.

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