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Growth-related life-history traits of an invasive gammarid species: evaluation with a Laird–Gompertz model

Abstract : Although the invasive gammarid Dikerogammarus villosus (Crustacea, Amphipoda) is a recent successful invader of Western Europe’s lakes and rivers, and a threat to North American aquatic ecosystems, its biology is scarcely known. Different growth models for each sex were established for the first time for a natural population of a freshwater gammarid. The LairdGompertz growth curve was used, on account it fit the best to our data, and was associated with an environmental forcing function to adjust the growth rate according to seasonal variations of environmental conditions. It was applied to a length decomposition obtained using the Bhattacharya’s method, realised on data obtained from a one-year population dynamics study. The models allowed an assessment of biological traits such as life span, the age of sexual maturity, the potential number of generations per year and the growth rate depending on environmental conditions. Growth-rate differences between males and females were consistent with biological processes such as the allocation of energy for reproduction. D. villosus had higher rates of growth and earlier sexual maturity than all other taxa, demographics that perhaps explain it’s invasive tendencies and its ability to colonise numerous new ecosystems, thus to become a cosmopolitan freshwater species.
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Christophe Piscart, Simon Devin, Jean-Nicolas Beisel, Jean-Claude Moreteau. Growth-related life-history traits of an invasive gammarid species: evaluation with a Laird–Gompertz model. Canadian Journal of Zoology, NRC Research Press, 2003, 81 (12), pp.2006-2014. ⟨10.1139/Z03-188⟩. ⟨hal-01726794⟩

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