Spatial variability in the somatic growth of pikeperch Sander lucioperca, an invasive piscivorous fish.
Introduced fishes can develop invasive populations that impact native species and ecosystems. Understanding the population ecology of introduced species in their extended ranges and how this compares to their native ranges is therefore important for informing their management. Here, the age and somatic growth rates of the piscivorous freshwater fish pikeperch Sander lucioperca were analysed across their invasive and native ranges to determine their spatial patterns and drivers. Analyses were initially completed in their invaded range in central and western England. Populations varied spatially in their growth rates; being slowest for a population in a narrow and shallow canal and fastest in a large, impounded lowland river. A meta-analysis of parameters of the von Bertalanffy growth model then revealed that across their native and invasive ranges, their theoretical ultimate lengths (L∞) and growth coefficients (K) were significantly related to latitude, but not longitude. Their relationships with latitude were nonlinear, with higher values of L∞ and lower values of K being evident towards their northerly and southerly range limits. Faster growth rates were evident in the middle of their range (45 to 55°N), suggesting temperatures here were most optimal for growth, but were in a trade-off with reduced ultimate lengths. These spatial patterns suggest that whilst introduced S. lucioperca can colonise new waters across a wide area, the expression of their life-history traits will vary spatially, with potential implications for how invasive populations establish and integrate into native fish communities.