Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2019

Abstract

Water‐borne hormone measurement is a noninvasive method suitable for amphibians of all sizes that are otherwise difficult to sample. For this method, containment‐water is assayed for hormones released by the animal. Originally developed in fish, the method has expanded to amphibians, but requires additional species‐specific validations. We wanted to determine physiological relevance of water‐borne corticosterone in spotted salamanders (Ambystoma maculatum) by comparing concentrations to those taken using established corticosterone sampling methods, such as plasma. Using a mixture of field and laboratory studies, we compared water‐borne corticosterone levels to other traditional methods of sampling corticosterone for spotted salamander larvae, metamorphs, and adults. Despite multiple attempts, and detecting differences between age groups, we found no correlations between water‐borne and plasma corticosterone levels in any age group. Water‐borne sampling measures a rate of release; whereas plasma is the concentration circulating in the blood. The unique units of measurement may inherently prevent correlations between the two. These two methods may also require different interpretations of the data and the physiological meaning. We also note caveats with the method, including how to account for differences in body size and life history stages. Collectively, our results illustrate the importance of careful validation of water‐borne hormone levels in each species in order to understand its physiological significance.

Comments

Original published version available at https ://doi.org/10.1002/ece3.5831

Publication Title

Ecology and Evolution

DOI

10.1002/ece3.5831

Share

COinS
 
 

To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.