Marine microbial communities of the Great Barrier Reef lagoon are influenced by riverine floodwaters and seasonal weather events

Angly, Florent E., Heath, Candice, Morgan, Thomas C., Tonin, Hemerson, Rich, Virginia, Schaffelke, Britta, Bourne, David G. and Tyson, Gene W. (2016) Marine microbial communities of the Great Barrier Reef lagoon are influenced by riverine floodwaters and seasonal weather events. PeerJ, 4 1-24. doi:10.7717/peerj.1511


Author Angly, Florent E.
Heath, Candice
Morgan, Thomas C.
Tonin, Hemerson
Rich, Virginia
Schaffelke, Britta
Bourne, David G.
Tyson, Gene W.
Title Marine microbial communities of the Great Barrier Reef lagoon are influenced by riverine floodwaters and seasonal weather events
Journal name PeerJ   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 2167-8359
Publication date 2016-01-05
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.7717/peerj.1511
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 4
Start page 1
End page 24
Total pages 24
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher PeerJ
Language eng
Formatted abstract
The role of microorganisms in maintaining coral reef health is increasingly recognized. Riverine floodwater containing herbicides and excess nutrients from fertilizers compromises water quality in the inshore Great Barrier Reef (GBR), with unknown consequences for planktonic marine microbial communities and thus coral reefs. In this baseline study, inshore GBR microbial communities were monitored along a 124 km long transect between 2011 and 2013 using 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing. Members of the bacterial orders Rickettsiales (e.g., Pelagibacteraceae) and Synechococcales (e.g., Prochlorococcus), and of the archaeal class Marine Group II were prevalent in all samples, exhibiting a clear seasonal dynamics. Microbial communities near the Tully river mouth included a mixture of taxa from offshore marine sites and from the river system. The environmental parameters collected could be summarized into four groups, represented by salinity, rainfall, temperature and water quality, that drove the composition of microbial communities. During the wet season, lower salinity and a lower water quality index resulting from higher river discharge corresponded to increases in riverine taxa at sites near the river mouth. Particularly large, transient changes in microbial community structure were seen during the extreme wet season 2010–11, and may be partially attributed to the effects of wind and waves, which resuspend sediments and homogenize the water column in shallow near-shore regions. This work shows that anthropogenic floodwaters and other environmental parameters work in conjunction to drive the spatial distribution of microorganisms in the GBR lagoon, as well as their seasonal and daily dynamics.
Keyword Amplicon sequencing
Anthropogenic impacts
Coral reefs
Floodwaters
Microbiology
Monitoring
Seasonality
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Article number e1511

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: HERDC Pre-Audit
Australian Centre for Ecogenomics
 
Versions
Version Filter Type
Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 8 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 8 times in Scopus Article | Citations
Google Scholar Search Google Scholar
Created: Sun, 07 Feb 2016, 10:29:19 EST by System User on behalf of Learning and Research Services (UQ Library)