Sensory physiology and behavior of blue crab (callinectes sapidus) postlarvae during horizontaltransport


Journal Article

Adult blue crabs (Callinectes sapidus) live in estuaries and release larvae near the entrances to estuaries. Larvae are then transported offshore to continental shelf areas where they undergo development. Postlarvae, or megalopae, remain near the surface and undergo reverse diel vertical migration. The behaviors underlying this migration pattern are responses to light and a solar day rhythm in activity, in which megalopae are active during the day and inactive at night. Onshore transport probably occurs by wind-generated surface currents. Once in the vicinity of an estuary, megalopae move up the estuary by selective tidal stream transport, in which they swim in the water column on rising tides at night and are on or near the bottom at all other times. Light inhibits swimming during the day. The ascent into the water column on nocturnal rising tides does not result from a biological rhythm in activity, but rather is cued by the rate of increase in salinity during rising tides. Megalopae have separatebehavioural responses in coastal/shelf areas and in estuaries, which are induced by chemical cues in offshore and estuarine waters. © 1995, Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. All rights reserved.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Forward, RB; Tankersley, RA; Devries, MC; Rittschof, D

Published Date

  • January 1, 1995

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 26 / 2-4

Start / End Page

  • 233 - 248

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1029-0362

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1023-6244

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1080/10236249509378942

Citation Source

  • Scopus