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Biological Invasions

, Volume 17, Issue 11, pp 3125–3131 | Cite as

Synergistic effects of propagule pressure and trophic subsidies overcome biotic resistance to a non-native fish

  • J. Robert Britton
  • Thi Nhat Quyen Tran
  • Ana Ruiz-Navarro
Original Paper
  • 399 Downloads

Abstract

A central question in invasion ecology is how non-native species develop sustainable populations from small numbers of introduced founders. As biotic resistance, propagule pressure and trophic subsidises affect the outcomes of introductions of non-native fish, their individual and combined effects were tested in experimental mesocosms using the model species Pseudorasbora parva, a highly invasive fish in Europe. Their effects were measured as the number of 0+ P. parva present per treatment at the end of one reproductive season. The control started with 8 mature individuals (equal sex ratio). There were seven treatments, comprising propagule pressure (16 individuals), biotic resistance (presence of a coexisting fish) and trophic subsidies (daily release of fishmeal pellets), and their combinations. Compared to the control, biotic resistance resulted in significantly reduced 0+ fish numbers, with stable isotope analysis (δ13C, δ15N; SIA) suggesting this was due to facultative piscivory by the coexisting fish. There were significantly elevated 0+ fish numbers in the trophic subsidy, with SIA suggesting the diet of co-existing fish now primary comprised the subsidy. There was no significant difference in 0+ fish number between the control and propagule pressure treatment. Whilst the effect of biotic resistance on 0+ fish number was reduced slightly with propagule pressure and also when the trophic subsidy was available, there were significantly increased numbers of 0+ fish present in the treatment where they acted in combination. Thus, their effects appeared synergistic, overcoming the biotic resistance and enabling greater numbers of 0+ P. parva to survive until the end of the reproductive season.

Keywords

Invasion Global change Pseudorasbora parva Propagule pressure 

Notes

Acknowledgments

ARN and JRB were supported by the ‘RINSE’ project (Interreg IVA 2 Seas Programme); TNQT was supported by TECHNO, an EU Erasmus Mundus programme.

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. Robert Britton
    • 1
  • Thi Nhat Quyen Tran
    • 1
  • Ana Ruiz-Navarro
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Life and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Science and TechnologyBournemouth UniversityDorsetUK
  2. 2.Departamento de Zoología y Antropología FísicaUniversidad de MurciaMurciaSpain

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