Respiration rates of Phyllaplysia taylori across populations from the US west coast


Local variation in microclimate, with extreme events amplified by ongoing climate change, can drive divergent physiological responses to warming across populations. As habitat temperature characteristics shift with climate change, populations may be required to use plasticity to deal with rapid shifts in thermal extremes. We investigated heat tolerance and metabolic rate in the direct-developing sea hare, Phyllaplysia taylori, to determine whether short-term plasticity (acclimation to winter, summer and future summer temperatures) was influenced by differences in microclimate. We identified correlations between thermal tolerance and genotype in P. taylori collected from sites along the western US coast from Ocean Shores, WA to Morro Bay, CA. P. taylori from all locations consistently exhibited critical thermal maxima (CTmax) above habitat temperatures, even when average daily variation in habitat temperature was considered (CTmax ranged from 24-35ºC, average=30.1±0.2ºC; average habitat temperature ranged from 12-20ºC, average=21±0.8ºC). CTmax and compensatory metabolic suppression after heat stress were correlated to habitat temperature. The breadth of plastic responses we observed (11°C) was substantially wider than reported for other poikilothermic taxa in the literature and did not appear to be population-specific. Our findings suggest that high plasticity of thermal tolerance precedes local adaptation, and improves the physiological resilience of populations under climate change.

Metadata Access
Creator Tanner, Richelle L; Bowie, Rauri C K; Wang-Claypool, Cynthia; Stillman, Jonathon H
Publisher PANGAEA - Data Publisher for Earth & Environmental Science
Publication Year 2020
Rights Data access is restricted (moratorium, sensitive data, license constraints)
OpenAccess false
Language English
Resource Type Dataset
Format text/tab-separated-values
Size 3720 data points
Discipline Biology; Life Sciences; Medicine; Medicine and Health; Physiology
Spatial Coverage (-124.150W, 35.380S, -120.850E, 46.970N); United States of America