Stress coping styles in response to high densities in invasive populations of the round goby (Neogobius melanostomus) in the Baltic Sea
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Over the past decade, individual differences in behavior have gained much interest in the context of species invasions. Certain behavioral traits, such as e.g. aggression, have been suggested to facilitate invasion success and a number of studies have found founding populations at invasion fronts to be a non-random sample of behavioral types from their source populations. In many animals, behavioral and physiological responses to challenge are connected, forming stress coping styles. However, there is a lack of studies considering the role of physiological stress response or coping styles during species invasions. Therefore we investigated the connection between aggression and stress response to high densities, in four invasive round goby (Neogobius melanostomus) populations of different age. We found the
first evidence for stress coping styles in round gobies, as individuals with a low stress response to high densities are also more aggressive. We did not find an effect of population age, likely because the youngest populations used were already too old, meaning that traits selected for at invasion fronts had started to fade out. Given that individual levels of aggression and stress tolerance are dependent on one another, and aggression has previously been identified as an important facilitator of dispersal and invasion success, stress coping styles should be an important factor during species invasions.
round goby, Neogobius melanostomus, aggression, plasma cortisol, species invasions, stress-tolerance
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-111909OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-111909DiVA: diva2:873982