Between Individual Differences in Home Range, Dispersal, Movement and Site Fidelity in a Benthic Piscivore: Evidence for Temperament-Dependent Spatial Ecology

Wednesday, August 20, 2014: 1:50 PM
2101 (Centre des congrès de Québec // Québec City Convention Centre)
Philip M. Harrison , Biology, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, ON, Canada
Lee F. G. Gutowsky , Biology, Carleton University, Ottawa, ON, Canada
Eduardo G. Martins , Department of Forest and Conservation Sciences, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada
David A. Patterson , Freshwater Ecosystems Section, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Burnaby, BC, Canada
Steven J. Cooke , Biology, Carleton University, Ottawa, ON, Canada
Michael Power , Biology, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, ON, Canada
Heterogeneity in spatial ecology is often observed within fish populations, although few researchers have investigated whether these between-individual differences are temporally consistent and thus represent personality-dependent behaviour. Furthermore, between-individual differences in dispersal and the relationships between dispersal and site fidelity, home-range and movement have rarely been tested. In this study, we explore between-individual differences in home-range, vertical activity, movement, dispersal, and site fidelity of burbot Lota lota over 2 years, using acoustic telemetry. We test for; consistency in spatial behaviours across temporal and spatial contexts, the role of internal factors such as body size, and between-individual correlations in behaviours. Our results demonstrate personality-dependent home-range, movement, dispersal, and site fidelity and suggest a spatial behavioural syndrome occurs independently from dispersal. We identify behavioural types ranging from ‘resident’ individuals with small home-ranges, high site fidelity and minimal movement, to ‘mobile’ individuals with large home ranges and little site fidelity. Conservation of the type of behavioural divergence we observed may be important for range expansion, habitat carrying-capacity and fish population resilience. Furthermore, our results suggest that the mean measures of space use often used in conservation policy, may not adequately capture the diversity of space use requirements of fish populations.