AbstractRapid colour change is used in aggressive interactions, ontogenetic transitions, nuptial displays and to prevent detection and/or recognition from predators or prey. The underlying mechanisms, constraints and benefits of colour change are often unclear, but examining such factors offers insights into phenotypic plasticity. Here, we investigated the mechanisms behind how an aggressive reef fish mimic (bluestriped fangblenny Plagiotremus rhinorhynchos) changes colour rapidly (1–5 min) between mimetic and other colour forms. Black with one neon blue dorsal stripe (mimic), black with two neon blue stripes, brown, olive and orange forms differed in melanophore density. Fish skin biopsies were modulated in vitro by hormones, and smaller fangblennies changed coloration more rapidly than larger fish suggesting that the ability to change colour is diminished as fish get larger. Individuals may be limited by differences in pigment cell densities to change colour between extreme colour forms (black to orange); therefore, longer morphological changes may also occur or fangblennies may exhibit dimorphic populations. Behavioural observations suggest that small black and orange individuals were equally successful in attacking passing fish to feed on dermal tissue/scales, indicating that deceptive strategies used by each colour form may deliver equal fitness benefits. The present study demonstrates for the first time how fangblennies change colour and highlights that colour plasticity offers important adaptive advantage; however, physiological constraints should also be considered.
Biological Journal of the Linnean Society – Oxford University Press
Published: Oct 1, 2017
It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.
Enjoy affordable access to
over 12 million articles from more than
10,000 peer-reviewed journals.
All for just $49/month
Read as many articles as you need. Full articles with original layout, charts and figures. Read online, from anywhere.
Keep up with your field with Personalized Recommendations and Follow Journals to get automatic updates.
It’s easy to organize your research with our built-in tools.
Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.
All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.
“Hi guys, I cannot tell you how much I love this resource. Incredible. I really believe you've hit the nail on the head with this site in regards to solving the research-purchase issue.”Daniel C.
“Whoa! It’s like Spotify but for academic articles.”@Phil_Robichaud
“I must say, @deepdyve is a fabulous solution to the independent researcher's problem of #access to #information.”@deepthiw
“My last article couldn't be possible without the platform @deepdyve that makes journal papers cheaper.”@JoseServera