Environmental control of skin colour in the red porgy, Pagrus pagrus

TitleEnvironmental control of skin colour in the red porgy, Pagrus pagrus
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsPavlidis, M, Karkana M, Fanouraki E, Papandroulakis N
JournalAquaculture Research
Pages837 - 849
KeywordsEnvironmental control, Melanophores, Red porgy, Skin colour

Fish display sophisticated skin chromatic properties that are of considerable ecological, physiological and behavioural importance. The aim of study was to investigate the role of important physical parameters (background colour, lighting spectrum, light intensity and water temperature) on skin colour to gain better knowledge of the environmental factors that regulate pigmentation in cultured red porgy, Pagrus pagrus. All tested physical parameters had a significant effect on skin lightness, especially in the dorsal body area; low light intensity, blue spectrum, a water temperature of 19°C and a white background significantly increased skin lightness. This effect was mediated through changes in melanophore motility and/or skin melanin concentration. None of the examined factors affected skin hue while a significant decrease in skin entire colour index (a combination of hue and chroma) was found only in white background-adapted fish. It is concluded that all tested physical factors are important regulators of skin lightness. © 2008 The Authors.


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