Larger body size and earlier run timing increase alewife reproductive success in a whole lake experiment

Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences
By: , and 

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Abstract

Environmental conditions can influence biological characteristics like phenology and body size with important consequences for organismal fitness. Examining these fitness consequences under natural conditions through genetic pedigree reconstruction offers a lens into potential population responses to changing environments. Over three years (2013-2015), we introduced adult alewife (Alosa pseudoharengus), anadromous, iteroparous clupeids, into one Massachusetts (USA) lake to complete the first detailed examination of this species’ mating system and assess relationships between body size, reproductive timing, and seasonal reproductive success. We reconstructed pedigrees using 15 microsatellites and genotypes from all possible parents and samples of naturally produced offspring within four months of hatching. Within each of the three study years, spawning adults had multiple mates and spawned multiple times. Larger females that arrived earlier had higher reproductive success. Declining body size and altered migration timing over time, through an influence on reproductive success, can influence population vital rates and productivity.

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Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Larger body size and earlier run timing increase alewife reproductive success in a whole lake experiment
Series title Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences
DOI 10.1139/cjfas-2017-0451
Volume 76
Issue 7
Year Published 2019
Language English
Publisher Canadian Science Publishing
Contributing office(s) Coop Res Unit Leetown
Description 13 p.
First page 1134
Last page 1146
Country United States
State Massachusetts
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