Hutchings Jeffrey A.

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Jeffrey A.

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  • Article
    The interactive effects of temperature and food consumption on growth of larval Arctic cod (Boreogadus saida): a bioenergetic model
    (University of California Press, 2022-02-10) David, Carmen L. ; Ji, Rubao ; Bouchard, Caroline ; Hop, Haakon ; Hutchings, Jeffrey A.
    Understanding larval growth, mediated by the interaction of early life traits and environmental conditions, is crucial to elucidate population dynamics. We used a bioenergetic model as an integrative tool to simulate the growth of Arctic cod (Boreogadus saida) larvae and to test the sensitivity of modeled growth to temperature and food quantity and quality. The growth was computed as the energy gained through food consumption minus the energy lost through respiration and other metabolic processes. We extended a previously published bioenergetic model to cover the full range of larval length and used a simplified feeding module. This simplification allowed us to build a predictive tool that can be applied to larval Arctic cod at a large spatial scale. Our model suggested that with subzero temperatures in the High Arctic, larvae need to increase food consumption in order to reach the observed length-at-age in late summer. The modeled growth agreed well with the field observations in the High Arctic but was 2–3 times higher than the laboratory-derived growth rate, probably due to differences in food type and selective mortality. Our study reveals important knowledge gaps in our understanding of larval cod growth in the High Arctic, including the lack of empirical estimations of daily ration and respiration for larvae under the natural habitat temperatures.