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Chemical cues from a predator Chaoborus sp. induce morphological defense (neck spine) and life history shifts (later reproduction, decreased fecundity but larger juvenile size) in the waterflea Daphnia pulex. These shifts have been interpreted either as costs of defense or as separate adaptation. In order to investigate if the life history shifts can be separated from the morphological defense, Daphnia pulex individuals were exposed to chemical cues from Chaoborus at different stages of life for variable periods. The daphnids that were exposed to Chaoborus started their reproduction later than the controls, although the differences were not statistically significant. Neck spine was induced only if daphnids were exposed to Chaoborus in an early stage of their life. Numbers of eggs produced were not affected by the different treatments, but egg mortality was higher in mothers exposed to Chaoborus. With these treatments it was possible to see neck spine induction without measurable life history changes or costs. On the other hand, irrespective of neck spine presence, the Chaoborus chemical(s) had an effect on Daphnia pulex mothers. [KEYWORDS: Daphnia pulex; Chaoborus; predator-induction; neck spine; life history; cost of defense Demographic costs; antipredator defenses; chaoborus-americanus; neck spine; induction; ecology; responses; evolution; traits]
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)67-71
Issue number1-3
StatePublished - 1996

ID: 34380