Changes in plasma cortisol, glucose, and selected blood properties in the summer flounder Paralichthys dentatus associated with sequential movement to three experimental conditions

James A. Sulikowski, W. Huntting Howell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations

Abstract

To determine the changes in blood chemistry associated with sequential transfer of summer flounder Paralichthys dentatus (320-480 g), 300 hatchery-reared fish were moved to three different environmental conditions during a 20-d period. Fish were transferred in progression from a recirculating seawater system (22 ppt, 22.5 C) to a flow-thru seawater system (31 ppt, 20.0 C), to three small coastal net pens (33 ppt. 15.5 C), and finally to a large open ocean net pen (33 ppt, 16.0 C). For this study, eight random fish were captured at each progressive step (environmental condition), anesthetized (MS222), and bled from the caudal vein (2 mL). Transferred flounder were bled every 12 h for 48 h to collect plasma cortisol and glucose samples. Fish were bled 24 h after transport and every 3 d thereafter for osmolarity, hematocrit, hemoglobin concentration, mean corpuscular hemoglobin content, glucose, cortisol, and the electrolytes Cl-, Na+, K+ and Ca++. The most significant perturbations to blood chemistry (P < 0.05) occurred within 24 h of initial transfer from the recirculating to flow-thru seawater systems, suggesting an osmoregulatory rather than handling or transfer related stress. Osmolarity, electrolyte, and hematological parameters fluctuated and then recovered to stable levels by day 8 in the flow-thru seawater system. However, unlike the initial transfer, successive movement to the coastal and then the open ocean net pens produced transient increases in both plasma cortisol and glucose levels, suggesting a high level of stress associated with extended flounder handling and transfer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)387-397
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of the World Aquaculture Society
Volume34
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2003
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aquatic Science
  • Agronomy and Crop Science

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