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Marine Biology

Kevin J Flynn, Aditee Mitra, Antonio Bode
Stable isotope ratios (SIR) are widely used to estimate food-web trophic levels (TLs). We built systems dynamic N-biomass-based models of different levels of complexity, containing explicit descriptions of isotope fractionation and of trophic level. The values of δ15 N and TLs, as independent and emergent properties, were used to test the potential for the SIR of nutrients, primary producers, consumers, and detritus to align with food-web TLs. Our analysis shows that there is no universal relationship between TL and δ15 N that permits a robust prognostic tool for configuration of food webs even if all system components can be reliably analysed...
2018: Marine Biology
Félix P Leiva, Cristóbal Garcés, Wilco C E P Verberk, Macarena Care, Kurt Paschke, Paulina Gebauer
For aquatic breathers, hypoxia and warming can act synergistically causing a mismatch between oxygen supply (reduced by hypoxia) and oxygen demand (increased by warming). The vulnerability of these species to such interactive effects may differ during ontogeny due to differing gas exchange systems. This study examines respiratory responses to temperature and hypoxia across four life-stages of the intertidal porcelain crab Petrolisthes laevigatus . Eggs, megalopae, juveniles and adults were exposed to combinations of temperatures from 6 to 18 °C and oxygen tensions from 2 to 21 kPa...
2018: Marine Biology
A-S Bonnet-Lebrun, R A Phillips, A Manica, A S L Rodrigues
Many predictive models of spatial and temporal distribution (e.g. in response to climate change or species introductions) assume that species have one environmental niche that applies to all individuals. However, there is growing evidence that individuals can have environmental preferences that are narrower than the species niche. Such individual specialization has mainly been studied in terms of dietary niches, but a recent increase in the availability of individual movement data opens the possibility of extending these analyses to specialisation in environmental preferences...
2018: Marine Biology
Fokje L Schaafsma, Yves Cherel, Hauke Flores, Jan Andries van Franeker, Mary-Anne Lea, Ben Raymond, Anton P van de Putte
Understanding the energy flux through food webs is important for estimating the capacity of marine ecosystems to support stocks of living resources. The energy density of species involved in trophic energy transfer has been measured in a large number of small studies, scattered over a 40-year publication record. Here, we reviewed energy density records of Southern Ocean zooplankton, nekton and several benthic taxa, including previously unpublished data. Comparing measured taxa, energy densities were highest in myctophid fishes (ranging from 17...
2018: Marine Biology
Kerstin Johannesson, Anna-Karin Ring, Klara B Johannesson, Elin Renborg, Per R Jonsson, Jon N Havenhand
Pelagic larval development has the potential to connect populations over large geographic distances and prevent genetic structuring. The solitary tunicate Ciona intestinalis has pelagic eggs and a swimming larval stage lasting for maximum a few days, with the potential for a homogenizing gene flow over relatively large areas. In the eastern North Sea, it is found in a geomorphologically complex archipelago with a mix of fjords and open costal habitats. Here, the coastal waters are also stratified with a marked pycnocline driven by salinity and temperature differences between shallow and deep waters...
2018: Marine Biology
G C A French, S Rizzuto, M Stürup, R Inger, S Barker, J H van Wyk, A V Towner, W O H Hughes
Demographic differences in resource use are key components of population and species ecology across the animal kingdom. White sharks ( Carcharodon carcharias ) are migratory, apex predators, which have undergone significant population declines across their range. Understanding their ecology is key to ensuring that management strategies are effective. Here, we carry out the first stable isotope analyses of free-swimming white sharks in South Africa. Biopsies were collected in Gansbaai (34.5805°S, 19.3518°E) between February and July 2015...
2018: Marine Biology
Derek P Manzello, Ian C Enochs, Graham Kolodziej, Renée Carlton, Lauren Valentino
The persistence of coral reef frameworks requires that calcium carbonate (CaCO3 ) production by corals and other calcifiers outpaces CaCO3 loss via physical, chemical, and biological erosion. Coral bleaching causes declines in CaCO3 production, but this varies with bleaching severity and the species impacted. We conducted census-based CaCO3 budget surveys using the established ReefBudget approach at Cheeca Rocks, an inshore patch reef in the Florida Keys, annually from 2012 to 2016. This site experienced warm-water bleaching in 2011, 2014, and 2015...
2018: Marine Biology
Floris M van Beest, Jonas Teilmann, Rune Dietz, Anders Galatius, Lonnie Mikkelsen, Dominique Stalder, Signe Sveegaard, Jacob Nabe-Nielsen
Quantifying intraspecific variation in movement behaviour of marine predators and the underlying environmental drivers is important to inform conservation management of protected species. Here, we provide the first empirical data on fine-scale movements of free-ranging harbour porpoises ( Phocoena phocoena ) in their natural habitat. Data were obtained from six individuals, tagged in two areas of the Danish North Sea, that were equipped with Global Positioning System (GPS) and dive recorder units (V-tags). We used multi-model inference and model averaging to evaluate the relative importance of various static and dynamic environmental conditions on the movement characteristics: speed, turning angle, dive duration, dive depth, dive wiggliness (a proxy for prey chasing behaviour), and post-dive duration...
2018: Marine Biology
Nadescha Zwerschke, Philip R Hollyman, Romy Wild, Robin Strigner, John R Turner, Jonathan W King
Impacts of invasive species are context dependent and linked to the ecosystem they occur within. To broaden the understanding of the impact of a globally widespread invasive oyster, Crassostrea ( Magallana ) gigas, intertidal surveys were carried out at 15 different sites in Europe. The impact of C. gigas on macro- (taxa surrounding oyster > 1 cm) and epifaunal (taxa on oyster < 1 cm) benthic communities and α and β-diversity was assessed and compared to those associated with native ecosystem engineers, including the flat oyster Ostrea edulis ...
2018: Marine Biology
Angela Wulff, Maria Karlberg, Malin Olofsson, Anders Torstensson, Lasse Riemann, Franciska S Steinhoff, Malin Mohlin, Nina Ekstrand, Melissa Chierici
Helcom scenario modelling suggests that the Baltic Sea, one of the largest brackish-water bodies in the world, could expect increased precipitation (decreased salinity) and increased concentration of atmospheric CO2 over the next 100 years. These changes are expected to affect the microplanktonic food web, and thereby nutrient and carbon cycling, in a complex and possibly synergistic manner. In the Baltic Proper, the extensive summer blooms dominated by the filamentous cyanobacteria Aphanizomenon sp., Dolichospermum spp...
2018: Marine Biology
L R Brewster, J J Dale, T L Guttridge, S H Gruber, A C Hansell, M Elliott, I G Cowx, N M Whitney, A C Gleiss
Discerning behaviours of free-ranging animals allows for quantification of their activity budget, providing important insight into ecology. Over recent years, accelerometers have been used to unveil the cryptic lives of animals. The increased ability of accelerometers to store large quantities of high resolution data has prompted a need for automated behavioural classification. We assessed the performance of several machine learning (ML) classifiers to discern five behaviours performed by accelerometer-equipped juvenile lemon sharks ( Negaprion brevirostris ) at Bimini, Bahamas (25°44'N, 79°16'W)...
2018: Marine Biology
Aleksandra Dańko, Ralf Schaible, Joanna Pijanowska, Maciej J Dańko
Budding hydromedusae have high reproductive rates due to asexual reproduction and can occur in high population densities along the coasts, specifically in tidal pools. In laboratory experiments, we investigated the effects of population density on the survival and reproductive strategies of a single clone of Eleutheria dichotoma . We found that sexual reproduction occurs with the highest rate at medium population densities. Increased sexual reproduction was associated with lower budding (asexual reproduction) and survival probability...
2018: Marine Biology
Konrad Karlsson, Simona Puiac, Monika Winder
To understand the effects of predicted warming and changing salinity of marine ecosystems, it is important to have a good knowledge of species vulnerability and their capacity to adapt to environmental changes. In spring and autumn of 2014, we conducted common garden experiments to investigate how different populations of the copepod Eurytemora affinis from the Baltic Sea respond to varying temperatures and salinity conditions. Copepods were collected in the Stockholm archipelago, Bothnian Bay, and Gulf of Riga (latitude, longitude: 58°48...
2018: Marine Biology
Lucy C Woodall, Francisco Otero-Ferrer, Miguel Correia, Janelle M R Curtis, Neil Garrick-Maidment, Paul W Shaw, Heather J Koldewey
Accurate taxonomy, population demography, and habitat descriptors inform species threat assessments and the design of effective conservation measures. Here we combine published studies with new genetic, morphological and habitat data that were collected from seahorse populations located along the European and North African coastlines to help inform management decisions for European seahorses. This study confirms the presence of only two native seahorse species ( Hippocampus guttulatus and H. hippocampus ) across Europe, with sporadic occurrence of non-native seahorse species in European waters...
2018: Marine Biology
Jessie Gardner, Clara Manno, Dorothee C E Bakker, Victoria L Peck, Geraint A Tarling
Early life stages of marine calcifiers are particularly vulnerable to climate change. In the Southern Ocean aragonite undersaturation events and areas of rapid warming already occur and are predicted to increase in extent. Here, we present the first study to successfully hatch the polar pteropod Limacina helicina antarctica and observe the potential impact of exposure to increased temperature and aragonite undersaturation resulting from ocean acidification (OA) on the early life stage survival and shell morphology...
2018: Marine Biology
Jennifer J Freer, Julian C Partridge, Geraint A Tarling, Martin A Collins, Martin J Genner
Predicting how species will respond to climate change is a growing field in marine ecology, yet knowledge of how to incorporate the uncertainty from future climate data into these predictions remains a significant challenge. To help overcome it, this review separates climate uncertainty into its three components (scenario uncertainty, model uncertainty, and internal model variability) and identifies four criteria that constitute a thorough interpretation of an ecological response to climate change in relation to these parts (awareness, access, incorporation, communication)...
2018: Marine Biology
Rebecca L Anderson, Winsor H Watson, Christopher C Chabot
While horseshoe crabs Limulus polyphemus from regions with two daily tides express endogenous circatidal (~ 12.4 h) activity rhythms, much less is known about locomotor rhythm expression in horseshoe crabs from other tidal regimes. This study investigated whether horseshoe crabs (1) always express activity rhythms consistent with their natural tides, and (2) can alter activity rhythm expression in response to novel tide cycles. Activity rhythms of animals from environments with two daily tides (Gulf of Maine, 43°6' N/70°52' W, and Massachusetts, 41°32' N/70°40'W), one dominant daily tide (Apalachee Bay, Florida, 29°58' N/84°20' W), and microtides (Indian River Lagoon, Florida, 28°5' N/80°35' W) were recorded in 2011-2013 during three artificial tide conditions: no tides, a 12...
April 2017: Marine Biology
Toby D Rogers, Giulia Cambiè, Michel J Kaiser
The lack of detailed life history (LH) information (e.g. age, growth, size at maturity, sex composition etc.) for many species of conservation importance limits the implementation of appropriate conservation measures. Typically, LH information is acquired using lethal sampling techniques, which undermines the goal of conservation. This is particularly problematic for many shark species that have low fecundity and slow growth rates. Here we tested the use of non-invasive laser photogrammetry to measure body morphometry in vivo...
2017: Marine Biology
Beata Śmietanka, Artur Burzyński
Doubly uniparental inheritance of mitochondria (DUI) is best known in the blue mussel Mytilus . Under this model, two types of mitochondrial DNA exist: female type (F), transmitted from females to offspring of both genders, and male type (M), transmitted exclusively from males to sons. The mitogenomes are usually highly divergent, but an occasional replacement of a typical M genome by a particular F genome has been postulated to explain reduction of this divergence. Disruption of the DUI model has been reported in hybridization areas...
2017: Marine Biology
Ing Chen, Shin Nishida, Wei-Cheng Yang, Tomohiko Isobe, Yuko Tajima, A Rus Hoelzel
The evolutionary processes that shape patterns of diversity in highly mobile marine species are poorly understood, but important towards transferable inference on their effective conservation. In this study, bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.) are studied to address this broader question. They exhibit remarkable geographical variation for morphology, life history, and genetic diversity, and this high level of variation has made the taxonomy of the genus controversial. A significant population structure has been reported for the most widely distributed species, the common bottlenose dolphin (T...
2017: Marine Biology
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