2018-2019 USAP Field Season
Interacting stressors: Metabolic capacity to acclimate under ocean warming and CO2-acidification in early developmental stages of Antarctic fishes
Dr. Anne Elizabeth Todgham
Supporting Stations: McMurdo Station
Many Antarctic marine organisms evolved in stable, cold-ocean conditions and possess limited capacities to respond to environmental fluctuations. Research on physiology and physiological limits of Antarctic fishes has focused largely on adult life stages with much less research on early life stages that likely prioritize energy allocations for growth and development over other necessary physiological processes. This project will examine the specific mechanisms that Antarctic fishes use to respond to changes in ocean conditions during early-life development (embryos, larvae and juveniles) to balance the organism's overall energetic needs for survival. The aim is to provide a unifying framework for linking environmental change, gene expression, metabolism, and organismal performance across a range of different fishes with different life-history strategies.
Field Season Overview
A four-person team will make day trips from the station to various sea-ice locations in McMurdo Sound, including the Intake Jetty, Arrival Heights, Cape Evans, and Cape Evans Wall. They will collect eggs and capture fish (primarily dragonfish and rock cod) at different life stages using traps suspended below the sea ice and placed on the ocean floor. Support contractor divers will also assist in collecting eggs and fish. The group will require Reed drill support, a dedicated fish hut to suspend winch-deployed traps, snowmobiles, and a PistenBully to transport live fish back to station. They will use Crary Laboratory aquaria to keep live fish and acclimate them to manipulated seawater conditions and will use the chemistry lab and the cold room for sample preparation and analyses.
Deploying Team Members