Marine & Environmental Sciences Faculty Articles

Title

Shoaling Reduces Metabolic Rate in a Gregarious Coral Reef Fish Species

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

7-1-2016

Publication Title

Journal of Experimental Biology

Keywords

Calming effect, Metabolism, Body condition, Respirometry, Energetics, Chromis viridis

ISSN

0022-0949

Volume

219

First Page

2802

Last Page

2805

Abstract

Many animals live in groups because of the potential benefits associated with defense and foraging. Group living may also induce a ‘calming effect’ on individuals, reducing overall metabolic demand. This effect could occur by minimising the need for individual vigilance and reducing stress through social buffering. However, this effect has proved difficult to quantify. We examined the effect of shoaling on metabolism and body condition in the gregarious damselfish Chromis viridis. Using a novel respirometry methodology for social species, we found that the presence of shoal-mate visual and olfactory cues led to a reduction in the minimum metabolic rate of individuals. Fish held in isolation for 1 week also exhibited a reduction in body condition when compared with those held in shoals. These results indicate that social isolation as a result of environmental disturbance could have physiological consequences for gregarious species.

Comments

© 2016. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution and reproduction in any medium provided that the original work is properly attributed.

Additional Comments

NERC fellowship #: NE/J019100/1

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

ORCID ID

0000-0001-8225-8344

DOI

10.1242/jeb.139493

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Peer Reviewed

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