PLoS ONE (Jan 2018)

Temperature-driven response reversibility and short-term quasi-acclimation of Daphnia magna.

  • Mara F Müller,
  • Jordi Colomer,
  • Teresa Serra

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 13, no. 12
p. e0209705


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Analysing the effect water temperature has on Daphnia magna is essential in anticipating the impact climate change will have on this freshwater zooplanktonic keystone species. While many authors have followed this line of research, few have covered an extensive temperature range or complex temperature change scenarios. Global warming is mostly associated with increased extreme temperature events, such as heat waves, as well as earlier and more intense thermal stratification. Both of these events may directly influence D. magna fitness, especially in those populations performing diel vertical migration (DVM). We analysed the effect water temperatures, ranging from 11 to 29°C, have on the filtration capacity (FC) of D. magna, to anticipate the effects of acclimation, temperature change rate (TCR) and potential reversibility of responses to such conditions. Results show that sudden temperature changes have an immediate negative impact on the FC of D. magna and is more severe at higher temperatures and higher TCRs. However, D. magna individuals have shown themselves to be capable of quasi-acclimating to temperatures ranging from 11 to 25°C in around a week and achieving much higher FCs; albeit never reaching the optimal FC achieved at 20°C. That said, 29°C is lethal for D. magna individuals within approximately five days. Finally, non-optimal temperature acclimated individuals can recover maximal FC within 2-4 days of the optimal long-term acclimation temperature (20°C) being re-established, thus proving temperature responses to be reversible.