Gut fluorescence analysis of barnacle larvae: an approach to quantify the ingested food

Gaonkar, Chetan A. ; Anil, Arga Chandrashekar (2012) Gut fluorescence analysis of barnacle larvae: an approach to quantify the ingested food Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science, 111 . pp. 147-150. ISSN 0272-7714

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Gut fluorescence analysis can provide a snapshot of ingested food and has been employed in feeding studies of various organisms. In this study we standardised the gut fluorescence method using laboratory-reared barnacle larvae (Balanus amphitrite) fed with mono-algal diet Chaetoceros calcitrans, a unicellular diatom at a cell concentration of 2 × 105 cells ml-1. The gut fluorescence of IV–VI instar nauplii was found to be 370(±12) ng chlorophyll a larva-1 and in faecal pellets it was 224(±63) ng chlorophyll a larva-1. A phaeopigment concentration in larval gut was found to be 311(±13) ng larva-1 and in faecal pellets it was 172(±61) ng larva-1. The study also analysed larval samples collected from the field during different seasons from a tropical environment influenced by monsoons (Dona Paula bay, Goa, west coast of India), with characteristic temporal variations in phytoplankton abundance and diversity. Gut fluorescence of larvae obtained during the post-monsoon season was consistently higher when compared to the pre-monsoon season, suggesting the predominance of autotrophic forms in the larval gut during the post-monsoon season. Whereas, the low gut fluorescence obtained during the pre-monsoon season indicated the ingestion of food sources other than autotrophs. Such differences observed in the feeding behaviour of larvae could be due to differential availability of food for the larvae during different seasons and indicate the capability of larvae to feed on wide range of food sources. This study shows the value of the fluorescence method in feeding studies of planktotrophic organisms and in the evaluation of ecosystem dynamics.

Item Type:Article
Source:Copyright of this article belongs to Elsevier.
Keywords:Barnacle Larvae; Gut Fluorescence; Phytoplankton; Chlorophyll a; Phaeopigments; Tropical Environment; Monsoons
ID Code:99894
Deposited On:27 Nov 2016 13:03
Last Modified:12 Feb 2018 12:10

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