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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
Rebecca J Wilson-Brodie, Moira A MacLean, Phillip B Fenberg
Body size reduction is predicted to be one of the most common ecological responses to climate change, yet examples within some taxonomic groups, such as marine molluscs, are rare. Here, we document a significant reduction in shell size of the rocky shore gastropod Nucella lapillus across the southern UK using natural history collections and modern field data. These results are correlated with temporal changes in sea-surface temperature from a long-term monitoring station. The maximum height of N. lapillus shells has declined by approximately 18 mm over the past 100 years, and the median size of shells in large size classes declined by 6 mm during this time...
2017: Marine Biology
Anna Stępień, Piotr Kukliński, Maria Włodarska-Kowalczuk, Małgorzata Krzemińska, Gudmundur Gudmundsson
Body size is one of the most important biological characters, as it defines many aspects of organismal functioning at the individual and community level. As body size controls many ecological aspects of species, it is often used as a proxy for the status of the ecosystem. So far no consistent mechanism driving size shift has been proposed. In this study, we investigated bathymetric variability in zooid's size and shape in aquatic colonial animals, Bryozoa. Although the response of bryozoan zooid size to temperature or food concentration has been experimentally proven, the effects of natural environmental variability on marine bryozoan populations has been much less explored...
2017: Marine Biology
Amélie Crespel, José-Luis Zambonino-Infante, David Mazurais, George Koumoundouros, Stefanos Fragkoulis, Patrick Quazuguel, Christine Huelvan, Laurianne Madec, Arianna Servili, Guy Claireaux
Ocean acidification is a recognized consequence of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) emission in the atmosphere. Despite its threat to marine ecosystems, little is presently known about the capacity for fish to respond efficiently to this acidification. In adult fish, acid-base regulatory capacities are believed to be relatively competent to respond to hypercapnic conditions. However, fish in early life stage could be particularly sensitive to environmental factors as organs and important physiological functions become progressively operational during this period...
2017: Marine Biology
Lina M Rasmusson, Chiara Lauritano, Gabriele Procaccini, Martin Gullström, Pimchanok Buapet, Mats Björk
The seagrass Zostera marina is an important marine ecosystem engineer, greatly influencing oxygen and carbon fluctuations in temperate coastal areas. Although photosynthetically driven gas fluxes are well studied, the impact of the plant's mitochondrial respiration on overall CO2 and O2 fluxes in marine vegetated areas is not yet understood. Likewise, the gene expression in relation to the respiratory pathway has not been well analyzed in seagrasses. This study uses a combined approach, studying respiratory oxygen consumption rates in darkness simultaneously with changes in gene expression, with the aim of examining how respiratory oxygen consumption fluctuates on a diel basis...
2017: Marine Biology
Farrah T Chan, Elizabeta Briski
The Topical Collection on Invasive Species includes 50 articles addressing many tenets of marine invasion ecology. The collection covers important topics relating to propagule pressure associated with transport vectors, species characteristics, attributes of recipient ecosystems, invasion genetics, biotic interactions, testing of invasion hypotheses, invasion dynamics and spread, and impacts of nonindigenous species. This article summarizes some of the collection's highlights.
2017: Marine Biology
Irene Ballesta-Artero, Rob Witbaard, Michael L Carroll, Jaap van der Meer
Arctica islandica is the longest-living non-colonial animal known at present. It inhabits coastal waters in the North Atlantic and its annual shell increments are widely used for paleoclimatic reconstructions. There is no consensus, however, about the intra-annual timing of its feeding activity and growth. This research aims to identify the main environmental drivers of A. islandica valve gape to clarify the ambiguity surrounding its seasonal activity. A lander was deployed from February 2014 to September 2015 on the sea bottom at Ingøya, Norway (71°03'N, 24°05'E) containing living A...
2017: Marine Biology
Ana Riesgo, Emily A Burke, Christopher Laumer, Gonzalo Giribet
Bdelloura candida (Platyhelminthes, Tricladida, Maricola) is an ectocommensal symbiont on the American horseshoe crab Limulus polyphemus, living on the book gills and appendages, where it spends its entire life. Given its limited dispersal capabilities and its inability to live outside of the host, we hypothesized a genetic structure that parallels that of its host. We obtained 84 planarian individuals from 19 horseshoe crabs collected from 10 sites from Massachusetts to Florida. We amplified the mitochondrial 16S rRNA and the nuclear internal transcribed spacer 2 and conducted phylogeographic and population genetic analyses, which show a clear and strong genetic break between the populations in the Atlantic and the Gulf coasts...
2017: Marine Biology
Antonio Bode, Manuel Varela, Ricardo Prego, Fernando Rozada, Martin D Santos
Phytoplankton species assemblages in estuaries are connected to those in rivers and marine environments by local hydrodynamics leading to a continuous flow of taxa. This study revealed differential effects of upwelling and river flow on phytoplankton communities observed in 2011 along a salinity gradient from a river reservoir connected to the sea through a ria-marine bay system in A Coruña (NW Spain, 43° 16-21' N, 8° 16-22' W). With 130 phytoplankton taxa identified, the assemblages were dominated in general by diatoms, particularly abundant in the bay and in the estuary, but also by chlorophycea and cyanobacteria in the reservoir...
2017: Marine Biology
Karsten Reise, Christian Buschbaum, Heike Büttger, Johannes Rick, K Mathias Wegner
Invasion trajectories of introduced alien species usually begin with a long establishment phase of low abundance, often followed by exponential expansion and subsequent adjustment phases. We review the first 26 years of feral Pacific oysters Crassostrea gigas around the island of Sylt in the Wadden Sea (North Sea, NE Atlantic), and reveal causal conditions for the invasion phases. Sea-based oyster farming with repeated introductions made establishment of feral oysters almost inevitable. Beds of mussels Mytilus edulis on mud flats offered firm substrate for attachment and ideal growth conditions around low tide level...
2017: Marine Biology
Franziska Julie Werner, Birte Matthiessen
Using outdoor mesocosms we investigated the relative importance of the direct and indirect (here: altered grazing) effects of seawater warming on benthic microalgae in a Baltic Sea Fucus vesiculosus (Phaeophyceae) system during the spring season. Seawater warming had a positive main effect on microalgal total biomass accrual and growth rate and on total mesograzer abundance and biomass. Moreover, under the existing resource-replete conditions in spring the direct positive effect of warming on microalgae was stronger than its indirect negative effect through enhanced grazing...
2017: Marine Biology
Hanna K Nuuttila, Winnie Courtene-Jones, Sarah Baulch, Malene Simon, Peter G H Evans
Populations of bottlenose dolphin and harbour porpoise inhabit Cardigan Bay, which was designated a Special Area of Conservation (SAC), with bottlenose dolphin listed as a primary feature for its conservation status. Understanding the abundance, distribution and habitat use of species is fundamental for conservation and the implementation of management. Bottlenose dolphin and harbour porpoise usage of feeding sites within Cardigan Bay SAC was examined using passive acoustic monitoring. Acoustic detections recorded with calibrated T-PODs (acoustic data loggers) indicated harbour porpoise to be present year round and in greater relative abundance than bottlenose dolphin...
2017: Marine Biology
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