The aim of this study was to evaluate alterations to the physiological profile of cortisol in pro-metamorphose phase tadpoles of Lithobates catesbeianus exposed to hypoxia stressor in a capture experiment and in a crowding experiment. The capture study was performed by the treatments: stress due to individual capture with a hand net, stress due to batch capture with a hand net and stress due to capture by emptying. Three simultaneous replicates was done witch 12 animals were sampled (6 normoxia - immediately blood collection) and 6 hypoxia - blood collection after 15 min of air exposition) in two collection times with 5 days by intervals. The crowding study was performed by the treatments 1 tadpole L-1, 5 tadpoles L-1 and 10 tadpoles L-1. Three simultaneous replicates was done witch 8 animals (4 normoxia and 4 hypoxia) were sampled in the zero moment (ZM) - blood collection before the experiment, 6 animals/treatment (3 normoxia and 3 hypoxia) to 4 and 8 days and 18 animals/treatment (9 normoxia and 9 hypoxia) to 12 days. The average values to plasmatic cortisol varying from 1.7 to 5.1ng mL-1 (capture study) and 1.0 to 4.2ng mL-1 (crowding study). It concludes that the biomarker tested (cortisol) showed no alterations front of the stressor used. Alternatively, a larger response pattern to these stimuli may have been expressed in another level of an unmeasured hormone (corticosterone). And the bullfrog has great ability to adapt to different management compared to other aquatic organisms, which demonstrates the plasticity of these animals.
Frogculture; American bullfrog; Lithobates catesbeianus; tadpole; stress; cortisol