Mating behaviour, epibiotic growth, and the effect of salinity on grooming activity in the hermaphroditic shrimp Lysmata wurdemanni
L. wurdemanni were exposed to chemical stimuli collected from recently moulted conspecifics of varying reproductive condition. Test animals were able to distinguish among the different conditions, and physically manipulated only the plastic nozzle used to pump solutions collected from shrimp with ovaries filled with vitellogenic oocytes. It was subsequently hypothesized that methyl farnesoate, a hormone associated with ovarian maturation in crustaceans, might be a key component of sex pheromones used by L. wurdemanni. However, a series of methyl farnesoate concentrations did not elicit responses, indicating this species does not use this hormone alone when determining reproductive condition.
Reproductive behaviour in L. wurdemanni was observed to differ both before and after copulation, as well as with increasing population density. Intermoult individuals were more likely to approach, follow and remain in the vicinity of a near-moult shrimp before mating could occur, and under high density conditions. The near-moult shrimp approached conspecifics only under low density conditions, and performed rapid escape behaviours only after copulation had occurred.
The unusual occurrence of epibiota upon L. wurdemanni was described, and the location, size and age of barnacles quantified. The effect of salinity upon grooming activities was tested. Results indicated that carapace grooming was depressed at low salinities, and could account for the considerable epibiota found in this region.
Advisor:Wicksten, Mary K.; Sweet, Merrill H.; Packard, Jane M.; Vinson, S. Bradleigh
School:Texas A&M University
School Location:USA - Texas
Source Type:Master's Thesis
Keywords:shrimp sexual selection hermaphrodite pheromone salinity grooming
Date of Publication:08/01/2003