Seasonal Variations in Maternal Provisioning of Crepidula fornicata (Gastropoda): Fatty Acid Composition of Females, Embryos and Larvae

Abstract : Recruitment success of marine invertebrate populations not only depends on the number of recruits but also on their quality which affects their survival. In species characterized by a mixed development (encapsulated embryonic development and release of planktotrophic larvae), the offspring quality depends on both maternal provisioning and larval feeding. Here, we investigated potential changes of maternal provisioning over the whole reproductive period in a gastropod with a mixed development: Crepidula fornicata. In its introduction area, C. fornicata reproduces from February to October, which implies that both adults and larvae are exposed to different food availabilities. Maternal provisioning was assessed by measuring the fatty acid (FA) composition of females, encapsulated embryos and larvae, in February, May, July and September 2009. FA are essential resources for the development of embryos and larvae, and are key biomarkers of offspring quality. Our results showed differences in FA composition between muscles, visceral masses, and encapsulated embryos. In particular, FA composition of embryos was similar to that of the visceral mass. Seasonal variations in FA composition were observed: in the middle of the reproductive season (May and July), female tissues and embryos showed a higher proportion of polyunsaturated fatty acids and especially.3, as compared to the beginning and end of the reproductive season (February and September). This showed that through maternal provisioning the quality of C. fornicata offspring was higher in the middle of the reproductive season. Whether this would result in an increase of recruitment success and juvenile performance would require further investigations.
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Fanny Leroy, Tarik Méziane, Pascal Riera, Thierry Comtet. Seasonal Variations in Maternal Provisioning of Crepidula fornicata (Gastropoda): Fatty Acid Composition of Females, Embryos and Larvae. PLoS ONE, Public Library of Science, 2013, 8 (9), pp.e75316. ⟨10.1371/journal.pone.0075316⟩. ⟨hal-01218825⟩

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