Accelerometry estimates field metabolic rate in giant Australian cuttlefish Sepia apama during breeding
Payne, NL and Gillanders, BM and Seymour, RS and Webber, DM and Snelling, EP and Semmens, JM, Accelerometry estimates field metabolic rate in giant Australian cuttlefish Sepia apama during breeding, Journal of Animal Ecology, 80, (2) pp. 422-430. ISSN 0021-8790 (2011) [Refereed Article]
1. Estimating the metabolic rate of animals in nature is central to understanding the physiological,
behavioural and evolutionary ecology of animals. Doubly labelled water and heart-rate methods
are the most commonly used approaches, but both have limitations that preclude their application
to some systems.
2. Accelerometry has emerged as a powerful tool for estimating energy expenditure in a range of
animals, but is yet to be used to estimate field metabolic rate in aquatic taxa. We combined
two-dimensional accelerometry and swim-tunnel respirometry to estimate patterns of energy
expenditure in giant Australian cuttlefish Sepia apama during breeding.
3. Both oxygen consumption rate (V_ o2) and swimming speed showed strong positive associations
with body acceleration, with coefficients of determination comparable to those using similar accelerometers
on terrestrial vertebrates. Despite increased activity during the day, field metabolic rate
rarely approached V_ o2, and night-time V_ o2 was similar to that at rest.
4. These results are consistent with the life-history strategy of this species, which has a poor
capacity to exercise anaerobically, and a mating strategy that is visually based. With the logistical
difficulties associated with observation in aquatic environments, accelerometry is likely to prove a
valuable tool for estimating energy expenditure in aquatic animals.
acoustic telemetry, Cephalopoda, diel rhythm, dynamic body acceleration, energetics,mating display, protein catabolism, semelparity