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Heart rate as a measure of stress in Antarctic krill, Euphausia superba


Ritz, DA and Newman, L and Swadling, KM and Nicol, S and Osborn, JE, Heart rate as a measure of stress in Antarctic krill, Euphausia superba, Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom, 83, (2) pp. 329-330 . ISSN 0025-3154 (2003) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2003 Cambridge University Press

DOI: doi:10.1017/S002531540300715Xh


Antarctic krill, Euphausia superba, normally live in social aggregations (schools) but rarely aggregate in laboratory tanks. In order to study the effect of stress on solitary living we tethered krill to wooden skewers and measured heart rate both when they were held isolated from conspecifics and when they were held at normal schooling distances (∼1 body length). Heart rate did not differ significantly with sex or body size. However, intermoult krill had a significantly lower heart rate than postmoult animals. When two individuals were held at schooling distance, with one slightly higher in the water column than the other, the heart rate of the higher individual slowed significantly (106-98 beats min-1), while that of the lower individual remained the same. We interpret these results to mean that krill living solitarily are stressed but will respond to neighbouring individuals by decreasing their metabolic rate and saving energy.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Ecology
Research Field:Marine and estuarine ecology (incl. marine ichthyology)
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Management of Antarctic and Southern Ocean environments
Objective Field:Biodiversity in Antarctic and Southern Ocean environments
UTAS Author:Ritz, DA (Associate Professor David Ritz)
UTAS Author:Newman, L (Dr Louise Newman)
UTAS Author:Swadling, KM (Associate Professor Kerrie Swadling)
UTAS Author:Osborn, JE (Dr Jon Osborn)
ID Code:25590
Year Published:2003
Web of Science® Times Cited:8
Deposited By:Zoology
Deposited On:2002-08-01
Last Modified:2017-02-09

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