Data from: Seasonality and growth in tropical freshwater ectotherm vertebrates: results from one-year experimentation in the African grey bichir, giraffe catfish, and the West African mud turtle
Gardin, Axelle et al. (2023), Data from: Seasonality and growth in tropical freshwater ectotherm vertebrates: results from one-year experimentation in the African grey bichir, giraffe catfish, and the West African mud turtle, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.9w0vt4bkw
Growth in ectotherm vertebrates is strongly rhythmed by seasonal variation in environmental parameters. To track the seasonal variation in ancient times in a continental and tropical context, we aim to develop a method based on the use of the growth rate of fossil ectotherm vertebrates (actinopterygians and chelonians) influenced by seasonal environmental fluctuations they experienced in their lifetime. However, the impact of environmental parameters on growth, positive or negative, and its intensity, depends on the taxa considered and data are scarce for tropical species. For one year, an experiment was conducted to better understand the effect of seasonal variation in environmental parameters (food abundance, temperature, and photoperiod) on the somatic growth rate of three species of tropical freshwater ectotherm vertebrates: the fishes Polypterus senegalus and Auchenoglanis occidentalis and the turtle Pelusios castaneus. Mimicking seasonal shifts expected to be experienced by the animals in the wild, the experiment highlighted the preponderant effect of food abundance on the growth rate of those three species. Water temperature variation had a significant effect on the growth rate of Po. senegalus and Pe. castaneus. Moreover, the photoperiod demonstrated no significant effect on the growth of the three species. The duration of application of starvation or cool water conditions, ranging from 1 to 3 months, did not affect the growth rate of the animals. However, Pe. castaneus showed a temporary sensitivity to the return of ad libitum feeding or of warm water, after a period of starvation or cool water, by a period of compensatory growth. Finally, this experiment revealed, in the three species, fluctuations in the growth rate under controlled and constant conditions. This variation, similar to the variation in precipitation and temperature observed in their native environment, could be linked to a strong effect of an internal rhythm controlling somatic growth rate.
All analyses were performed in R Version 4.2.2 (R Core Team, 2022).
Laboratoire Paléontologie Evolution Paléoécosystèmes Paléoprimatologie
Université de Poitiers, Award: ACI UP 2011
Université de Poitiers, Award: ACI UP 2014
Conseil Régional Aquitaine, Award: ASAP 210724