Section 25
Chapter 24,775

Hematological aspects of the thermoacclimatory process in the rainbow trout, Salmo gairdneri

Dewilde, M.A.; Houston, A.H.

J Fish Res Board Can 24(11): 2267-2281


DOI: 10.1139/f67-185
Accession: 024774688

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The blood oxygen capacity of the rainbow trout has been investigated as a function of thermal acclimation in terms of erythrocyte abundance, packed cell volume, hemoglobin concentrations, and mean erythrocytic volume and hemoglobin content. Fish at the lower acclimation temperatures employed (3, 7 C) were characterized by relatively low erythrocyte counts, hematocrits, and hemoglobin levels. Mean erythrocyte volumes tended to be relatively high, whereas mean erythrocytic hemoglobin content was somewhat below that typical of the higher temperature groups. In general, animals held at intermediate temperatures (11, 14, 17 C) showed significant increases in oxygen-carrying capacity by comparison with cold-acclimated fish. Finally trout at 21 C typicallly had larger numbers of somewhat smaller red cells, more hemoglobin, and higher levels of hemoglobin per erythrocyte than either the low- or intermediate-temperature fish. Significant differences were observed between summer and fall-winter series of trout, particularly with respect to hemoglobin levels. The results are discussed in relation to the general problem of respiratory thermoadaptation.

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