During my PhD I will evaluate the cost of life-history adaptations to external stressors, such as elevated mortality. My project is built on a selection experiment which has been continuously running from 2009 on wild guppy (Poecilia reticulata) populations at UiB. There have already been quantified results from these populations of fishing effects on life-histories and sustainable yield.
I will utilize these populations using a cross-disciplinary approach connecting behavioural ecology, evolutionary biology, ecology and physiology to understand which co- evolving traits fisheries-induced evolution is shaping and how costs in populations experiencing strong directional selection on size are being paid.
I will focus on three classes of traits: behaviour (ability to cope with stressful situations and solve new challenges), physiology (metabolic rate, aerobic scope, anaerobic capacity and swimming performance) and parasite resistance. I will also obtain data on growth, maturation and fecundity from tested individuals to establish correlations between these life-history traits and the aforementioned traits.