Ontogenetic changes in activity, locomotion and behavioural complexity in tadpoles

Cheron, M. ✉; Raoelison, L.; Kato, A.; Ropert-Coudert, Y.; Meyer, X.; MacIntosh, A.J.J.; Brischoux, F.

Angol nyelvű Szakcikk (Folyóiratcikk) Tudományos
  • SJR Scopus - Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics: Q1
Metamorphosis is a widespread developmental process that involves considerable changes in morphology, habitat use, ecology and behaviour between early developmental (larval) stages and adult forms. Among amphibians, anuran larvae (tadpoles) undergo massive morphological and ecological changes during their development, with early stages characterized by somatic growth, whereas more conspicuous changes (i.e. metamorphosis) occur later during development. In this study, we examined how locomotor and behavioural traits covary with morphology (body size) and metamorphosis (hindlimb and forelimb development) across developmental stages in spined toad (Bufo spinosus) tadpoles. As expected, we found that locomotion and behaviour undergo significant changes during tadpole development. These changes are curvilinear across developmental stages, with a phase of increasing activity and locomotion followed by a phase of stasis and/or reduction in locomotion and behavioural complexity. All the metrics we investigated indicate that the peak of activity and associated behaviour is situated at a pivotal stage when somatic growth decreases and significant morphological changes occur (i.e. hindlimb growth). Future studies that aim to investigate determinants of locomotion should include developmental stages as covariates in order to assess whether the sensitivity of locomotion to environmental variables changes across developmental stages. © 2021 The Linnean Society of London, Biological Journal of the Linnean Society.
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2024-05-28 15:09