Marine and Freshwater Research Marine and Freshwater Research Society
Advances in the aquatic sciences
RESEARCH ARTICLE

Physiological tools to predict invasiveness and spread via estuarine bridges: tolerance of Brazilian native and worldwide introduced freshwater fishes to increased salinity

Silvia Maria Millan Gutierre A , Jean Ricardo Simões Vitule B , Carolina Arruda Freire A and Viviane Prodocimo A C

A Departamento de Fisiologia, Setor de Ciências Biológicas, Universidade Federal do Paraná, Centro Politécnico, Curitiba, Paraná, 81531-990, Brazil.

B Laboratório de Ecologia e Conservação, Departamento de Engenharia Ambiental, Setor de Tecnologia, Universidade Federal do Paraná, Centro Politécnico, Curitiba, Paraná, 81531-980, Brazil.

C Corresponding author. Email: vprodocimo@ufpr.br

Marine and Freshwater Research 65(5) 425-436 http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/MF13161
Submitted: 10 April 2013  Accepted: 16 September 2013   Published: 20 December 2013

Abstract

Non-native freshwater fishes may spread via estuaries, invading nearby basins. The Brazilian natives Rhamdia quelen and Geophagus brasiliensis, and the worldwide introduced Clarias gariepinus, Ictalurus punctatus, Oreochromis niloticus and Cyprinus carpio were acutely exposed (6 h) to salinities 15 and 30. Hypothetically, the introduced species display greater physiological plasticity than do the natives. Exposure to salinity 30 was lethal after 1.5–3 h to all species except for O. niloticus and G. brasiliensis. Increase in plasma osmolality was inversely related to muscle water content, mainly in salinity 30 for all species. R. quelen and C. gariepinus displayed increased expression of heat-shock protein 70 (HSP70) on salinity increase; differently, I. punctatus, O. niloticus and C. carpio showed high constitutive levels already in freshwater. Species with high constitutive expression of HSP and/or high degree of euryhalinity (cichlids) could potentially use estuaries as bridges, especially through areas of salinity <15.

Additional keywords: biological invasions, environmental matching, heat-shock protein, muscle water, osmoregulation, physiological tolerance.


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