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The impact of individual and combined abiotic factors on daily otolith growth in a coral reef fish
Wenger, A.S.; Whinney, J.; Taylor, B.; Kroon, F. (2016). The impact of individual and combined abiotic factors on daily otolith growth in a coral reef fish. NPG Scientific Reports 6(28875): 12 pp
In: Scientific Reports (Nature Publishing Group). Nature Publishing Group: London. ISSN 2045-2322, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in Authors 

Keywords
    Neopomacentrus bankieri (Richardson, 1846) [WoRMS]; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Wenger, A.S.
  • Whinney, J.
  • Taylor, B.
  • Kroon, F.

Abstract
    Coral reefs are increasingly subjected to both local and global stressors, however, there is limited information on how reef organisms respond to their combined effects under natural conditions. This field study examined the growth response of the damselfish Neopomacentrus bankieri to the individual and combined effects of multiple abiotic factors. Turbidity, temperature, tidal movement, and wave action were recorded every 10 minutes for four months, after which the daily otolith growth of N. bankieri was aligned with corresponding abiotic conditions. Temperature was the only significant driver of daily otolith increment width, with increasing temperatures resulting in decreasing width. Although tidal movement was not a significant driver of increment width by itself, the combined effect of tidal movement and temperature had a greater negative effect on growth than temperature alone. Our results indicate that temperature can drive changes in growth even at very fine scales, and demonstrate that the cumulative impact of abiotic factors can be substantially greater than individual effects. As abiotic factors continue to change in intensity and duration, the combined impacts of them will become increasingly important drivers of physiological and ecological change.

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