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Article
Variation in fast-start performance within a population of polyphenic bluegill (Lepomis macrochirus)
Physiological and Biochemical Zoology
  • Shannon Page Gerry, Fairfield University
  • A. Robbins
  • D. J. Ellerby
Document Type
Article
Article Version
Publisher's PDF
Publication Date
12-1-2012
Abstract
Bluegill sunfish Lepomis macrochirus exhibit intraspecific variation in their morphology and swimming performance based on habitat. The pelagic form has a relatively streamlined, fusiform body shape associated with greater steady-state swimming speed and energy economy. In contrast, littoral bluegill have deeper bodies with fins located farther from their center of mass to enhance maneuverability among littoral vegetation. Deeper body shapes have been associated with increased faststart performance to escape predators or capture prey. We hypothesized that littoral bluegill, which have a deeper body shape, would exhibit greater fast-start performance than pelagic bluegill. A total of 29 bluegill (16 littoral, 13 pelagic) were caught by hook and line, and their fast-start performance was analyzed from high-speed video recordings. Body shape appears to be a poor predictor of fast-start performance. Contrary to our expectations, pelagic bluegill had a significantly higher peak velocity, peak acceleration, and angular velocity compared to littoral bluegill. Pelagic bluegill living among larger predators and foraging on mobile prey may be exposed to selection pressures that favor increased fast-start performance. Integrated studies of internal morphology and physiology are needed to fully understand the relationship between morphology and performance in this population.
Comments

Copyright 2012 University of Chicago Press

Archived (with 12-month embargo) with permission from copyright holder.

Available at http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.1086/667593

Published Citation
Gerry, S.P., *Robbins, A. and Ellerby, D.J. November/December 2012. Variation in fast-start performance within a population of polyphenic bluegill (Lepomis macrochirus). Physiological and Biochemical Zoology, 85(6), pp. 697-703.
DOI
10.1086/667593
None
Peer Reviewed
Citation Information
Shannon Page Gerry, A. Robbins and D. J. Ellerby. "Variation in fast-start performance within a population of polyphenic bluegill (Lepomis macrochirus)" Physiological and Biochemical Zoology Vol. 85 Iss. 6 (2012)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/shannon_gerry/2/