Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Even fish don’t swim well when they’re young!

03.04.2006
Do you remember learning to swim? Thrashing around, floundering, until suddenly it all clicks into place and a few feeble strokes of doggy-paddle propel you away from your parent’s arms.

Surely, you think, fish must be born as expert swimmers. Actually, fish larvae are pretty feeble when it comes to an efficient mode of swimming called ‘burst-and-coast’. Dr Ulrike Müller from Wageningen University studies how fish swim: “Fish larvae are the most critical life history stage. In marine fish more than 99% of the mortality occurs in the larval stage so anything that might explain what holds them back is useful”. Müller will present her research on Monday 3rd April, at the Society for Experimental Biology’s Annual Main Meeting in Canterbury [session A5].

The ‘burst-and-coast’ method of swimming involves alternating stages: the fish power forward in a ‘burst’ and then hold their body straight to ‘coast’. Dr Müller and her colleagues might have found what it is that prevents larvae of the zebrafish from reaching top speeds: the larvae cannot maintain their body in a horizontal position while coasting. The research team think this is because larvae don’t have the help of an adult swimbladder and have only small, ineffective side-fins. This lack of control in early days means that the larvae suffer a lot of drag during the coasting phase and this could be something that affects other types of fish. “Many fish larvae hatch without fully formed pectoral fins and all hatch without a swimbladder, so similar problems could occur for them”, predicts Müller.

This conclusion is all the more profound because it refutes two previous theories of poor hatchling swimming, one focusing on the burst phase and the other on the coast.

The former of the two explanations suggests that because the larvae are not very heavy they may not gain much momentum in the burst phase to carry over into the coast phase, while the latter theory states that when the larvae are very small they experience the water in a different way; it appears thicker, like syrup and harder to swim in. “Momentum can explain some of the poor swimming in larvae, but not all, and the difference in coasting ability cannot be explained by differences in body length either”, Müller argues.

Hopefully Müller’s findings about pectoral fins and swimbladders can be used to reduce fish mortality rates. “Fish breeding programs cannot offer their larvae swimming lessons, but once we understand which behaviours cause the fish larvae the most trouble, then it is easier to adjust rearing schemes in aquaculture and to lend a hand to endangered species”, she says.

Lucy Moore | alfa
Further information:
http://www.sebiology.org.uk/Meetings/pageview.asp?S=2&mid=88

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Zebrafish's near 360 degree UV-vision knocks stripes off Google Street View
22.06.2018 | University of Sussex

nachricht New cellular pathway helps explain how inflammation leads to artery disease
22.06.2018 | Cedars-Sinai Medical Center

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Temperature-controlled fiber-optic light source with liquid core

In a recent publication in the renowned journal Optica, scientists of Leibniz-Institute of Photonic Technology (Leibniz IPHT) in Jena showed that they can accurately control the optical properties of liquid-core fiber lasers and therefore their spectral band width by temperature and pressure tuning.

Already last year, the researchers provided experimental proof of a new dynamic of hybrid solitons– temporally and spectrally stationary light waves resulting...

Im Focus: Overdosing on Calcium

Nano crystals impact stem cell fate during bone formation

Scientists from the University of Freiburg and the University of Basel identified a master regulator for bone regeneration. Prasad Shastri, Professor of...

Im Focus: AchemAsia 2019 will take place in Shanghai

Moving into its fourth decade, AchemAsia is setting out for new horizons: The International Expo and Innovation Forum for Sustainable Chemical Production will take place from 21-23 May 2019 in Shanghai, China. With an updated event profile, the eleventh edition focusses on topics that are especially relevant for the Chinese process industry, putting a strong emphasis on sustainability and innovation.

Founded in 1989 as a spin-off of ACHEMA to cater to the needs of China’s then developing industry, AchemAsia has since grown into a platform where the latest...

Im Focus: First real-time test of Li-Fi utilization for the industrial Internet of Things

The BMBF-funded OWICELLS project was successfully completed with a final presentation at the BMW plant in Munich. The presentation demonstrated a Li-Fi communication with a mobile robot, while the robot carried out usual production processes (welding, moving and testing parts) in a 5x5m² production cell. The robust, optical wireless transmission is based on spatial diversity; in other words, data is sent and received simultaneously by several LEDs and several photodiodes. The system can transmit data at more than 100 Mbit/s and five milliseconds latency.

Modern production technologies in the automobile industry must become more flexible in order to fulfil individual customer requirements.

Im Focus: Sharp images with flexible fibers

An international team of scientists has discovered a new way to transfer image information through multimodal fibers with almost no distortion - even if the fiber is bent. The results of the study, to which scientist from the Leibniz-Institute of Photonic Technology Jena (Leibniz IPHT) contributed, were published on 6thJune in the highly-cited journal Physical Review Letters.

Endoscopes allow doctors to see into a patient’s body like through a keyhole. Typically, the images are transmitted via a bundle of several hundreds of optical...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Munich conference on asteroid detection, tracking and defense

13.06.2018 | Event News

2nd International Baltic Earth Conference in Denmark: “The Baltic Sea region in Transition”

08.06.2018 | Event News

ISEKI_Food 2018: Conference with Holistic View of Food Production

05.06.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Graphene assembled film shows higher thermal conductivity than graphite film

22.06.2018 | Materials Sciences

Fast rising bedrock below West Antarctica reveals an extremely fluid Earth mantle

22.06.2018 | Earth Sciences

Zebrafish's near 360 degree UV-vision knocks stripes off Google Street View

22.06.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>