The effects of feeding on the swimming performance and metabolic response of juvenile southern catfish, Silurus meridionalis, acclimated at different temperatures.

Research paper by Xu X Pang, Zhen-Dong ZD Cao, Jiang-Lan JL Peng, Shi-Jian SJ Fu

Indexed on: 17 Nov '09Published on: 17 Nov '09Published in: Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology - Part A: Molecular & Integrative Physiology


To test whether the effects of feeding on swimming performance vary with acclimation temperature in juvenile southern catfish (Silurus meridionalis), we investigated the specific dynamic action (SDA) and swimming performance of fasting and feeding fish at acclimation temperatures of 15, 21, 27, and 33 degrees C. Feeding had no effect on the critical swimming speeding (U(crit)) of fish acclimated at 15 degrees C (p=0.66), whereas it elicited a 12.04, 18.70, and 20.98% decrease in U(crit) for fish acclimated at 21, 27 and 33 degrees C, respectively (p<0.05). Both the maximal postprandial oxygen consumption rate (VO2peak) and the active metabolic rate (VO2active, maximal aerobic sustainable metabolic rate of fasting fish) increased significantly with temperature (p<0.05). The postprandial maximum oxygen consumption rates during swimming (VO2max) were higher than the VO2active of fasting fish at all temperature groups (p<0.05). The VO2max increased with increasing temperature, but the relative residual metabolic scope (VO2max-VO2peak) during swimming decreased with increasing in temperature. The present study showed that the impairment of postprandial swimming performance increased with increasing temperature due to the unparalleled changes in the catfish's central cardio-respiratory, peripheral digestive and locomotory capacities. The different metabolic strategies of juvenile southern catfish at different temperatures may relate to changes in oxygen demand, imbalances in ion fluxes and dissolved oxygen levels with changes in temperature.