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Marine Biology

, Volume 156, Issue 8, pp 1691–1702 | Cite as

Effect of hyposalinity on the photophysiology of Siderastrea radians

  • Kathryn M. Chartrand
  • Michael Joseph Durako
  • James E. Blum
Original Paper

Abstract

Tolerance to hyposalinity of the scleractinian coral S. radians was examined in a mesocosm study. Colonies of S. radians were collected from five basins in Florida Bay, USA, which occur along a northeast-to-southwest salinity gradient. Salinity treatments were based on historical salinity records for these basins. Photophysiology of the endosymbiont Symbiodinium spp. (maximum quantum yield; Fv/Fm) was measured as an indicator of holobiont stress to hyposalinity. Colonies from each basin were assigned four salinity treatments [The Practical Salinity Scale (PSS) was used to determine salinity. Units are not assigned to salinity values because it is a ratio and has no unit as defined by UNESCO (UNESCO Technical papers no. 45, IAPSO Pub. Sci. No. 32, Paris, France, 1985)] (30, 20, 15, and 10) and salinities were reduced 2 per day from ambient (30) to simulate a natural salinity decrease. Colonies treated with salinities of 20 and 15 showed no decrease in Fv/Fm versus controls (i.e. 30), up to 5 days after reaching their target salinity. This indicates a greater ability to withstand reduced salinity for relatively extended periods of time in S. radians compared to other reef species. Within 1 day after salinity of 10 was reached, there was a significant reduction in Fv/Fm, indicating a critical threshold for hyposaline tolerance. At the lowest treatment salinity (10), Fv/Fm for the more estuarine, northeast-basin colonies were significantly higher than the most marine southwest-basin colonies (Twin Key Basin). Our results suggest that historical salinity ranges within basins determine coral population salinity tolerances.

Keywords

Salinity Treatment Pulse Amplitude Modulate Symbiotic Dinoflagellate Hyposaline Basin Population 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Notes

Acknowledgments

This research was funded by a grant from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (Grant No. 56980) supported by a cooperative agreement with the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD #4600001348). Additional data was provided by the SERC-FIU Water Quality Monitoring Network which is supported by SFWMD/SERC Cooperative Agreement #C-15397 as well as EPA Agreement #X994621-94-0. All corals were collected under the Everglades National Park research permit No. EVER-2006-SCI-0033. The authors would also like to thank Fay Belshe and Brooke Landry from UNCW and Manuel Merello, Donna Berns, Jennifer Kunzelman, and Dr. Margaret Hall from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission for field and logistical support.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kathryn M. Chartrand
    • 1
    • 3
  • Michael Joseph Durako
    • 1
  • James E. Blum
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Biology and Marine Biology, Center for Marine ScienceThe University of North Carolina WilmingtonWilmingtonUSA
  2. 2.Department of Mathematics and StatisticsThe University of North Carolina WilmingtonWilmingtonUSA
  3. 3.Department of Primary Industries and FisheriesNorthern Fisheries CentreCairnsAustralia

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