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California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo

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Relationship Of Maternal Flow Environment To Offspring Size In Botrylloides Violaceus, Damion J. Delton, Sarah Cohen Aug 2011

Relationship Of Maternal Flow Environment To Offspring Size In Botrylloides Violaceus, Damion J. Delton, Sarah Cohen

STAR (STEM Teacher and Researcher) Presentations

Colonial botryllid tunicates, such as Botrylloides violaceus, brood large, non-feeding offspring with extremely limited larval life spans of minutes to perhaps one day. Despite the importance of this transitory life history stage, there is little information on how environmental factors such as ambient water flow affect larval size among invertebrates. Since adult tunicates feed by filtering particles from the water flowing around the siphons, we reasoned that colonies of B. violaceus in high water flow may produce larger offspring due to greater food availability. We tested to see whether there was a relationship between larval size and water motion in ...