Reproductive Life-History Strategies in Lake Whitefish from the Laurentian Great Lakes

Thursday, August 21, 2014: 8:40 AM
200B (Centre des congrès de Québec // Québec City Convention Centre)
Andrew M. Muir , Great Lakes Fishery Commission, Ann Arbor, MI
Michael T. Arts , Chemistry and Biology, Ryerson University, Toronto, ON, Canada
Marten Koops , Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Burlington, ON, Canada
Timothy B. Johnson , Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, Picton, ON, Canada
Charles C. Krueger , Center for Systems Integration and Sustainability, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI
Trent M. Sutton , School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences, University of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks, AK
Recent food-web changes in the Laurentian Great Lakes are affecting energy and nutrient allocation to lake whitefish (Coregonus clupeaformis) with potential downstream effects on egg condition and recruitment. We tested whether egg condition was conserved or varied with maternal condition in eight stocks from Lakes Erie, Michigan, and Superior. Egg condition was conserved across stocks based on: (1) a lack of correlation between females and eggs for total lipid, DHA, and other essential fatty acids; (2) higher levels of energy and long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LC-PUFA) in eggs compared to females; and (3) no among-stock differences for those same variables in eggs. Females from northern Lake Michigan generally made the greatest trade-offs between egg size and fecundity. Highly fecund females provisioned less lipid, but more n-3 LC-PUFA to their eggs. A lack of stock-level patterns in energy and nutrient allocation suggests that tradeoffs occur at the level of individual females and that females in poor condition make greater trade-offs between egg size and fecundity, total lipids and n-3 LC-PUFA than females in good condition.