Energetic costs in the coevolutionary relationship between bitterling fish and freshwater mussels
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Bitterling fishes and unionid mussels are involved in a two-sided co-evolutionary association. On the one side, bitterling exploit unionids by ovipositing in their gills. On the other side, unionids develop via a larval stage (glochidium) that attaches to fish gills. Both interactions are parasitic and expected to have negative consequences for the host. Here, we examine the effects of this association on the metabolic rates of mussel and fish hosts by measuring oxygen uptake rates (MO2). Measurements were performed on two widespread and broadly coexisting species, namely the rose bitterling Rhodeus ocellatus and Chinese pond mussel Sinanodonta woodiana. As predicted, we observed an increase in routine MO2 in mussels parasitized by bitterling, but only when hosting early stages of bitterling embryos that reside in the interlamellar space of the gills and obstruct water circulation. Hosting later-stage bitterling embryos (that reside in the suprabranchial cavity outside the host gills) was not associated with a higher routine MO2. We did not observe an acute negative effect of glochidial infestations on maximal oxygen uptake rate (MO2max), but glochidia-infested bitterling showed consistently lower oxygen consumption rates during recovery from MO2max. Our results suggest that acute costs of this mutually parasitic relationship might be mitigated, at least in part, by adaptations to limit infestation rates.
Methling , C , Douda , K , Liu , H , Rouchet , R , Bartáková , V , Yu , D , Smith , C & Reichard , M 2018 , ' Energetic costs in the coevolutionary relationship between bitterling fish and freshwater mussels ' , Biological Journal of the Linnean Society , vol. Advance Articles . https://doi.org/10.1093/biolinnean/bly178
Biological Journal of the Linnean Society
© 2018, The Linnean Society of London. This work has been made available online in accordance with the publisher's policies. This is the author created accepted version manuscript following peer review and as such may differ slightly from the final published version. The final published version of this work is available at https://doi.org/10.1093/biolinnean/bly178
DescriptionThis research was supported by the Czech Science Foundation (13-05872S) and the Strategic Priority Research Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (grant no. XDB31040000).
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