Journal Article

Do antennule and aesthetasc structure in the crayfish Orconectes virilis correlate with flow habitat?

Kristina S. Mead

in Integrative and Comparative Biology

Published on behalf of The Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology

Volume 48, issue 6, pages 823-833
Published in print December 2008 | ISSN: 1540-7063
Published online June 2008 | e-ISSN: 1557-7023 | DOI:
Do antennule and aesthetasc structure in the crayfish Orconectes virilis correlate with flow habitat?

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The local flow environment affects the shape of waterborne chemical signals through a variety of physical mechanisms and at several scales. Since crayfish rely on these chemical signals to extract information about predators, prey, and mates, one might expect the chemical sensors (aesthetascs) on crayfish antennules to be physically tuned to the presentation of chemical cues by the flow environment. This hypothesis was tested by comparing length, diameter, and spacing of antennules and aesthetascs among geographically distinct populations of Orconectes virilis. Crayfish were collected from the Chagrin river, Hebron hatchery, and Burt lake. In addition, antennules were sampled from 43 museum populations representing 12 lake, 10 creek, and 21 river populations from multiple states and river drainages. Mean velocities from the collection sites were either measured directly or calculated from United States Geological Survey (USGS) historical data. Structural parameters were measured using Scion Image software on Scanning electron microscope micrographs, and analyses of variance were performed using StatView. Structural parameters of aesthetascs were found to vary with flow environment. Aesthetascs from lake populations were inserted at a larger angle, extended out farther from the supporting antennule relative to the width of the antennule, and were more widely spaced than aesthetascs from creek, hatchery, and river populations.

Journal Article.  5627 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Biological Sciences

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