EFFECTS OF TEMPERATURE ON IN SITU BEHAVIOUR AND ACTIVITY OF CORAL TROUT, PLECTROPOMUS LEOPARDUS, ON THE GREAT BARRIER REEF, AUSTRALIA
Physiological performance of marine fishes is highly sensitive to changes in temperature. Spatial and temporal variation in ocean temperatures may have a marked impact on activity and behaviour of fishes thereby influencing population structure and fisheries productivity. This study examines variation in activity and behaviour of common coral trout (Plectropomus leopardus ) among seasons and between locations in the northern and southern sectors of the Great Barrier Reef, Australia. In situ observations show that routine swimming speeds of P.leopardus increase with increasing temperature from 36.1 cms-1 (± 4.3 SE) at 22°C compared to 40.8 cms-1 (± 6.5 SE) at 30°C. However, it is expected that high temperatures > 30°C might constrain the frequency and speed of burst swimming, impacting feeding success and energetic intake. Accelerometry data from 38 acoustically tagged P. leopardus will be downloaded and analysed in March 2016, providing detailed information on activity budgets of fishes exposed to maximum summer temperatures . This study explores the implications of the effects of increasing temperature on wild stocks of P.leopardus. These results are complemented by previous tank based studies and will enable better informed predictions about how P.leopardus populations and coral reef fisheries generally, might be impacted by sustained and ongoing global climate change.
Scott, M. E., James Cook University, Australia, email@example.com
Location: 308 A/B
Presentation is given by student: Yes