Reference : Seasonal variation of morph ratio in facultatively paedomorphic populations of the pa...
Scientific journals : Article
Life sciences : Zoology
Life sciences : Environmental sciences & ecology
Life sciences : Aquatic sciences & oceanology
Seasonal variation of morph ratio in facultatively paedomorphic populations of the palmate newt Triturus helveticus
Denoël, Mathieu mailto [Université de Liège - ULiège > Département des sciences et gestion de l'environnement > Biologie du comportement - Ethologie et psychologie animale >]
Acta Oecologica: International Journal of Ecology
Gauthier-Villars/Editions Elsevier
Yes (verified by ORBi)
[en] Abundance ; Drying ; Metamorphosis ; Paedomorphosis ; Polyphenism ; Resource partitioning ; Ecology ; Environment ; Global change ; Lissotriton helveticus ; Palmate newt ; Larzac ; Triturus helveticus ; Drought ; Proximate causes
[en] Facultative paedomorphosis is a polyphenism in which individuals may express one of two alternative ontogenetic pathways (metamorphosis vs. paedomorphosis) depending on environmental cues. Previous laboratory experiments showed that drying can cause morph ratio change, suggesting that the maintenance of facultative paedomorphosis is highly dependent on environmental determinants. The aim of this study was to examine seasonal variation in morph ratios in eight ponds from Larzac (southern France) naturally inhabited by palmate newts and to relate it to pond drying. in some ponds, the relative proportion of paedomorphs (i.e. individuals retaining gills at the adult stage) increased after the breeding period, but it remained stable or decreased in other ponds. This seasonal variation in the abundance of the two morphs most probably reflects (1) the emigration of metamorphs leaving the pond to occupy terrestrial habitats and (2) metamorphosis of paedomorphic adults in response to drying of the ponds. This study shows that facultative paedomorphosis in palmate newts is a dynamic process that allows rapid change (i.e. within a single year) in morph ratio to fit environmental variation (i.e. risk of drying) within the aquatic habitats. Long-term studies are needed to model the evolution of the dimorphism according to environmental change. (c) 2005 Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.
Fonds de la Recherche Scientifique (Communauté française de Belgique) - F.R.S.-FNRS
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