Nutrients from salmon parents alter selection pressures on their offspring

Auer, S. K. et al. (2018) Nutrients from salmon parents alter selection pressures on their offspring. Ecology Letters, 21(2), pp. 287-295. (doi: 10.1111/ele.12894) (PMID:29243313) (PMCID:PMC5814727)

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Organisms can modify their surrounding environment, but whether these changes are large enough to feed back and alter their evolutionary trajectories is not well understood, particularly in wild populations. Here we show that nutrient pulses from decomposing Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) parents alter selection pressures on their offspring with important consequences for their phenotypic and genetic diversity. We found a strong survival advantage to larger eggs and faster juvenile metabolic rates in streams lacking carcasses but not in streams containing this parental nutrient input. Differences in selection intensities led to significant phenotypic divergence in these two traits among stream types. Stronger selection in streams with low parental nutrient input also decreased the number of surviving families compared to streams with high parental nutrient levels. Observed effects of parent-derived nutrients on selection pressures provide experimental evidence for key components of eco-evolutionary feedbacks in wild populations.

Item Type:Articles
Keywords:Ecology, evolution, behavior and systematics.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Anderson, Mr Graeme and Auer, Dr Sonya and McLennan, Dr Darryl and Metcalfe, Professor Neil and Bassar, Dr Ronald and Salin, Dr Karine
Authors: Auer, S. K., Anderson, G. J., McKelvey, S., Bassar, R. D., McLennan, D., Armstrong, J. D., Nislow, K. H., Downie, H. K., McKelvey, L., Morgan, T. A.J., Salin, K., Orrell, D. L., Gauthey, A., Reid, T. C., and Metcalfe, N. B.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Biodiversity, One Health & Veterinary Medicine
Journal Name:Ecology Letters
ISSN (Online):1461-0248
Published Online:15 December 2017
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2017 The Authors
First Published:First published in Ecology Letters 21(2):287-295
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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