Enhanced energy status of corals on coastal, high-turbidity reefs

Anthony, Kenneth R. N. (2006) Enhanced energy status of corals on coastal, high-turbidity reefs. Marine Ecology-progress Series, 319 111-116. doi:10.3354/meps319111

Author Anthony, Kenneth R. N.
Title Enhanced energy status of corals on coastal, high-turbidity reefs
Journal name Marine Ecology-progress Series   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0171-8630
Publication date 2006-01-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.3354/meps319111
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 319
Start page 111
End page 116
Total pages 6
Editor Otto Kinne
Place of publication Oldendorf, Germany
Publisher Inter-Research
Language eng
Abstract Sedimentation and high turbidity have long been considered a major threat to corals, causing world-wide concern for the health of coral reefs in coastal environments. While studies have demonstrated that sediment conditions characteristic of inshore reefs cause stress in corals, the consequences of such conditions for the physiological status of corals require testing in field situations. Here, I compare the size of energy stores (as lipid content), a proxy for physiological condition, of 2 coral species (Turbinaria mesenterina and Acropora valida) between coastal and offshore environments. Corals on coastal reefs contained 4-fold (T mesenterina) and 2-fold (A. valida) more lipid than conspecifics offshore, despite 1 order of magnitude higher turbidity levels inshore. Results were consistent across 4 sites in each environment. Reproductive investment in A. valida (a seasonal mass spawner) did not vary between environments, suggesting that the larger lipid stores in corals on coastal reefs are mainly somatic energy reserves. These results demonstrate that the environmental conditions on inshore, high-turbidity reefs do not always impact negatively on the physiology of corals. The contrasting lipid levels of T. mesenterina between environments may explain its greater success on coastal reefs.
Keyword Turbidity
Energy Storage
Scleractinian Coral
Marine & Freshwater Biology
Scleractinian Corals
Q-Index Code C1

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Created: Wed, 15 Aug 2007, 18:42:53 EST