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TRADE-OFFS BETWEEN LIFE-HISTORY TRAITS AT RANGE-EDGE AND CENTRAL LOCATIONS

Journal article
Authors R. Araujo
E. A. Serrao
I. Sousa-Pinto
F. Arenas
C. A. Monteiro
Gunilla B. Toth
Henrik Pavia
Per Åberg
Published in Journal of Phycology
Volume 51
Issue 4
Pages 808-818
ISSN 0022-3646
Publication year 2015
Published at Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences, Tjärnö Marine Biological Laboratory
Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences
Pages 808-818
Language en
Links dx.doi.org/10.1111/jpy.12321
Keywords defence, growth, life-history traits, range-edge populations, reproduction, trade-offs, SEAWEED ASCOPHYLLUM-NODOSUM, REPRODUCTIVE EFFORT, MARGINAL POPULATIONS, STOCHASTIC ENVIRONMENTS, SEXUAL REPRODUCTION, FUCUS-VESICULOSUS, NATURAL-SELECTION, SPATIAL VARIATION, PATELLA-VULGATA, SOUTHERN LIMIT, Plant Sciences, Marine & Freshwater Biology
Subject categories Biological Sciences

Abstract

The allocation of resources to different life-history traits should represent the best compromise in fitness investment for organisms in their local environment. When resources are limiting, the investment in a specific trait must carry a cost that is expressed in trade-offs with other traits. In this study, the relative investment in the fitness-related traits, growth, reproduction and defence were compared at central and range-edge locations, using the seaweed Ascophyllum nodosum as a model system. Individual growth rates were similar at both sites, whereas edge populations showed a higher relative investment in reproduction (demonstrated by a higher reproductive allocation and extended reproductive periods) when compared to central populations that invested more in defence. These results show the capability of A. nodosum to differentially allocate resources for different traits under different habitat conditions, suggesting that reproduction and defence have different fitness values under the specific living conditions experienced at edge and central locations. However, ongoing climate change may threaten edge populations by increasing the selective pressure on specific traits, forcing these populations to lower the investment in other traits that are also potentially important for population fitness.

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