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Biol Lett. 2011 Dec 23;7(6):917-20. doi: 10.1098/rsbl.2011.0293. Epub 2011 Jun 1.

Ocean acidification erodes crucial auditory behaviour in a marine fish.

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  • 1School of Biological Sciences, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK. stephen.simpson@bristol.ac.uk

Abstract

Ocean acidification is predicted to affect marine ecosystems in many ways, including modification of fish behaviour. Previous studies have identified effects of CO(2)-enriched conditions on the sensory behaviour of fishes, including the loss of natural responses to odours resulting in ecologically deleterious decisions. Many fishes also rely on hearing for orientation, habitat selection, predator avoidance and communication. We used an auditory choice chamber to study the influence of CO(2)-enriched conditions on directional responses of juvenile clownfish (Amphiprion percula) to daytime reef noise. Rearing and test conditions were based on Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change predictions for the twenty-first century: current-day ambient, 600, 700 and 900 µatm pCO(2). Juveniles from ambient CO(2)-conditions significantly avoided the reef noise, as expected, but this behaviour was absent in juveniles from CO(2)-enriched conditions. This study provides, to our knowledge, the first evidence that ocean acidification affects the auditory response of fishes, with potentially detrimental impacts on early survival.

PMID:
21632617
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3210647
Free PMC Article
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