Snail leaps and bounds: drivers of the diel movement pattern of a large invertebrate, the Caribbean queen conch (Lobatus gigas), in a marginal inshore habitat
|Author(s)||Dujon Antoine M.1, 5, Stieglitz Thomas C.1, 2, 3, 6, Amice Erwan7, Webber Dale M.4|
|Affiliation(s)||1 : Inst Univ Europeen Mer, CNRS UMR 6539, Lab Sci Environm Marin, Pl Nicolas Copernic, F-29280 Plouzane, France.
2 : James Cook Univ, Ctr Trop Water & Aquat Ecosyst Res, Townsville, Qld 4811, Australia.
3 : James Cook Univ, Sch Engn & Phys Sci, Townsville, Qld 4811, Australia.
4 : VEMCO Ltd, Bedford, NS B4B 0L9, Canada.
5 : Deakin Univ, Ctr Integrat Ecol, Sch Life & Environm Sci, Waurn Ponds Campus, Waurn Ponds, Vic 3216, Australia.
6 : Aix Marseille Univ, CNRS, Ctr Rech & Enseignement Geosci Environm CEREGE, IRD,Coll France, F-13545 Aix En Provence, France.
7 : Inst Univ Europeen Mer, CNRS UMR 6539, Lab Sci Environm Marin, Pl Nicolas Copernic, F-29280 Plouzane, France.
|Source||Canadian Journal Of Zoology (0008-4301) (Canadian Science Publishing, Nrc Research Press), 2019-05 , Vol. 97 , N. 5 , P. 436-445|
|WOS© Times Cited||10|
|Keyword(s)||movement recognition model, bio-logging, movement ecology, foraging behaviour, marine ecology, endangered species, fisheries, queen conch, Lobatus gigas|
Understanding the relationship between the movements of animals and their environment is crucial for fisheries and species management. There is currently a lack of detailed information about the movement of slow-moving benthic species, especially for species of ecological or commercial importance. Here we document the relationship between diel movement and environmental parameters in a groundwater-fed coastal inlet for the queen conch (Lobatus gigas (Linnaeus, 1758)), an important fishery resource of the Caribbean region, using three-dimensional accelerometers and video cameras. Our results show immature queen conch (n = 9) spend most of their active time grazing, exhibiting two main distinct movements that we characterize as a leap and a drift that are mostly used to access new foraging resources. When overturned, they flip, producing a movement with the highest acceleration recorded to limit exposure and restore normal position. Movement patterns appear to be significantly affected by the oxygen concentration of the bottom water, with lower activity during low-oxygen levels in the morning (probability of 0.75 of observing 0 movement per hour) and maximum activity during the afternoon when oxygen concentration is at its maximum (probability of 0.80 of observing >10 movements per hour). Salinity and temperature had little effect on movement patterns. Our results confirm that highly variable marginal habitats like groundwater-fed inlets are suitable for juvenile conch growth and should be included in efficient conservation plans.