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Video observation of surface exploration in cyprids of
: the movements of antennular sensory setae
Lookup NU author(s)
Dr Nicholas Aldred
Professor Tony Clare
Maruzzo D, Conlan S, Aldred N, Clare AS, Hoeg JT
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Video microscopy of cyprids of Balanus amphitrite was used to monitor the action of antennular setae during the exploratory behaviour prior to attachment. In addition, SEM was used to provide a revised description of all antennular setae for that species. The videos describe if a particular seta touches the substratum and the area it can cover during surface exploration. On the fourth segment, the plumose terminal setae A and B are never in contact with the substratum, lack a terminal pore and it is argued that they sense hydrodynamic forces. The aesthetasc-like terminal seta D is likewise held free in the water at all times and it is speculated that it senses dissolved substances, but, since it contains a scolopale rod, it must also have a mechano-receptive function. All remaining antennular setae on the second, third and fourth segments have a terminal pore and it is argued that these are bimodal receptors with both chemo- and mechano-receptive modalities. These setae are also at one time or another in contact with the substratum, except perhaps for the small preaxial seta 2 and terminal seta C. The first seta to contact the surface during a tentative step is radial seta 5, which is longer than all other radial setae. All other setae on the second and third segment are only in contact after a step is completed. When the attachment disc touches the surface (=a step completed) the long and curved postaxial seta 2 (on the second segment) and postaxial seta 3 on the third segment are both flexed to either side of the antennule. This lateral displacement ensures that these two setae can touch large surface areas to either side of the appendage. The four subterminal setae on the fourth segment contact the surface both immediately before and after a step has been completed, and the constant flicking of the segment significantly increases the surface area tested by both these chemoreceptors and by terminal seta E, which can sweep up to 60 μm laterally from the attachment disc. The flicking of the fourth segment may also serve to dilute the boundary layer of chemoreceptors on the fourth segment such as the aesthetasc-like terminal seta D and thus facilitate the detection of new stimuli.
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