Effect of low sea water temperature on water balance in the Atlantic salmon

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Yu.V. Lega, A.G. Chernitsky, N.M. Belkovsky
Laboratory of Salmonid Biology, Institute of Marine Biology, Dalnie Zelentsy, Murmansk region, 184631, Russia

Accepted: February 11, 1992

Keywords: Atlantic salmon, low temperature, water balance


The water balance in Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar L.) overwintering in sea water (34 ‰) was investigated. With a decrease of temperature from 5.6 to 1.0°C the drinking rate decreased from 8.9 to 5.0 ml/kg/day. A decrease in temperature led, however, to an increase in the proportion of water absorbed in the intestines from 60 to 96 %. Blood serum osmolarity increased from 320 to 440 mosm/l with decreasing temperature and there was a reduction in tissue water content from 75 to 69 %. The disturbance of water balance at low temperature may be one of the factors responsible for mortality of salmon overwintering in sea water.

The original full PDF-version:
Yu.V. Lega, A.G.Chernitsky, and N.M. Belkovsky. Effect of low sea water temperature on water balance in the Atlantic salmon, (Salmo salar L.), 1992

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