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Stable isotopic records of bleaching and endolithic algae blooms in the skeleton of the boulder forming coral Montastraea faveolata
Hartmann, A.C.; Carilli, J.E.; Norris, R.D.; Charles, C.D.; Deheyn, D.D. (2010). Stable isotopic records of bleaching and endolithic algae blooms in the skeleton of the boulder forming coral Montastraea faveolata. Coral Reefs 29: 1079-1089. dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00338-010-0667-5
In: Coral Reefs. Springer: Berlin; Heidelberg; New York. ISSN 0722-4028, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 
    VLIZ: Open Repository 232543 [ OMA ]

Keywords
    Montastraea faveolata (Ellis & Solander, 1786) [WoRMS]; Marine
Author keywords
    Skeletal carbon isotopes; Montastraea faveolata; Coral bleaching; Endolithic algae

Authors  Top 
  • Hartmann, A.C.
  • Carilli, J.E.
  • Norris, R.D.
  • Charles, C.D.
  • Deheyn, D.D., more

Abstract
    Within boulder forming corals, fixation of dissolved inorganic carbon is performed by symbiotic dinoflagellates within the coral tissue and, to a lesser extent, endolithic algae within the coral skeleton. Endolithic algae produce distinctive green bands in the coral skeleton, and their origin may be related to periods of coral bleaching due to complete loss of dinoflagellate symbionts or ‘‘paling’’ in which symbiont populations are patchily reduced in coral tissue. Stable carbon isotopes were analyzed in coral skeletons across a known bleaching event and 12 blooms of endolithic algae to determine whether either of these types of changes in photosynthesis had a clear isotopic signature.Stable carbon isotopes tended to be enriched in the coral skeleton during the initiation of endolith blooms, consistent with enhanced photosynthesis by endoliths. In contrast, there were no consistent d13C patterns directly associated with bleaching, suggesting that there is no unique isotopic signature of bleaching. On the other hand, isotopic values after bleaching were lighter 92% of the time when compared to the bleaching interval. This marked drop in skeletal d13C may reflect increased kinetic fractionation and slow symbiont recolonization for several years after bleaching.

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