Resting egg production is considered the most common form of dormancy in aquatic invertebrates. Given that many taxa at least partially terminate resting egg state using environmental cues, knowledge on environmental drivers of hatching success is important, particularly within the context of climate change and environmental degradation. Fairy shrimp (anostracans) are temporary wetland specialists that are reliant on resting egg production for population persistence. Temporary wetlands are common in many arid regions projected to experience increases in temperature, and in areas often compromised by human-mediated activities. In this study, we assessed the combined effects of light and temperature on the hatching success of Streptocephalus cafer (Anostraca) dormant eggs from temporary wetlands in an arid environment. Both temperature and light altered hatching success, with emergent effects evident. Light caused a significant threefold increase in hatching success overall, while temperature effects were non-linear, with hatching optimised at 27°C, and especially under light conditions. These results are discussed within the context of shifting climates and disturbances to temporary wetland ecosystems.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics