Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Shape up quickly – applies to fish too!

30.09.2014

Fish can live in almost any aquatic environment on Earth, but when the climate changes and temperatures go up many species are pushed to the limit. The amount of time needed to adjust to new conditions could prove critical for how different species cope in the future, reveals a new study from researchers at the University of Gothenburg, published in the scientific journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

Climate change continues apace thanks to increasing levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. The greenhouse effect has led not only to an increase in average temperatures but also to more extreme weather conditions, such as major heatwaves.


Erik Sandblom with a couple of shorthorn sculpins caught off Disko Island in Greenland.

More than just survival

In contrast to birds and mammals, fish are ectothermic, which means that their body temperature fluctuates in line with the temperature of their surroundings. Fish that live at different temperatures can generally do so because they are able to optimise their bodily functions to that particular temperature. Changes in the ambient temperature can therefore disrupt this balance.

"Previous research has focused almost exclusively on whether different species will be able to survive an increase in temperature or not," says Erik Sandblom, researcher at the University of Gothenburg's Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences. "We were interested in finding out how species that survive actually manage to do so, how long it takes and the limitations they have to contend with during the acclimation period."

Most vulnerable during the first few weeks

In the published trial the researchers simulated a temporary heatwave and then monitored how the physiology of the shorthorn sculpin, a common marine bottom-dwelling fish species, was affected. The results show that during the first week of the heatwave the fish were severely restricted and were forced to forego high-energy processes such as eating or swimming in order to survive.

"During the first few weeks of a sudden heatwave the fish do survive but are vulnerable to events that would otherwise pass without problem. Dealing with extra challenges such as escaping from predators or coping with disease can be fatal."

Amount of time decisive

The trial took eight weeks and the results show that the physiological load reduces with each passing week as the fish gradually manage to reset their bodily functions and acclimate to the new environment. The results also show that the "cost" to the fish correlates closely with how long it takes to adjust. In a future that is both warmer and more variable, it is therefore likely to be important not only to adjust to new conditions, but to do so quickly.

The research was carried out with: Michael Axelsson, Albin Gräns and Henrik Seth at the University of Gothenburg.

Contact:
Erik Sandblom
Researcher at the Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences
Tel: +46 (0)31 786 4548, +46 (0)703 286 358
E-mail: erik.sandblom@bioenv.gu.se

Weitere Informationen:

http://www.science.gu.se/english/News/News_detail//shape-up-quickly---applies-to...

Henrik Axlid | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Upcycling 'fast fashion' to reduce waste and pollution
03.04.2017 | American Chemical Society

nachricht Litter is present throughout the world’s oceans: 1,220 species affected
27.03.2017 | Alfred-Wegener-Institut, Helmholtz-Zentrum für Polar- und Meeresforschung

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Fighting drug resistant tuberculosis – InfectoGnostics meets MYCO-NET² partners in Peru

28.04.2017 | Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Wireless power can drive tiny electronic devices in the GI tract

28.04.2017 | Medical Engineering

Ice cave in Transylvania yields window into region's past

28.04.2017 | Earth Sciences

Nose2Brain – Better Therapy for Multiple Sclerosis

28.04.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>