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Trophodynamics of intertidal harpacticoid copepods based on stable isotopes and fatty acid profiling
Cnudde, C.; Werbrouck, E.; Lepoint, G.; Vangansbeke, D.; Moens, T.; De Troch, M. (2013). Trophodynamics of intertidal harpacticoid copepods based on stable isotopes and fatty acid profiling, in: Cnudde, C. Trophic ecology of intertidal harpacticoid copepods, with emphasis on their interactions with bacteria = Trofische ecologie van intertidale harpacticoide copepoden, met de nadruk op hun interacties met bacteriën. pp. 51-70
In: Cnudde, C. (2013). Trophic ecology of intertidal harpacticoid copepods, with emphasis on their interactions with bacteria = Trofische ecologie van intertidale harpacticoide copepoden, met de nadruk op hun interacties met bacteriën. PhD Thesis. Ghent University (UGent): Gent. ISBN 9789090278285. 209 pp., more

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Keywords
    Fatty acids; Harpacticoida [WoRMS]; Paraleptastacus spinicauda (Scott T. & Scott A., 1895) [WoRMS]; Spartina alterniflora [WoRMS]; Marine
Author keywords
    Harpacticoid copepods; Intertidal; Stable isotope analysis

Authors  Top 
  • Vangansbeke, D.
  • Moens, T., more
  • De Troch, M., more

Abstract
    Lower food-web interactions between the meiobenthos and basal food sources are key drivers of benthic energy fluxes. Yet, they are most challenging to reveal due to the complexity of benthic resources and small sizes of interacting organisms. By means of stable isotopes (d13C, d15N) and fatty acids, we examined the variability of in situ diets of harpacticoid species and families from a heterogeneous tidal flat – salt marsh area (5 stations sampled). This was done to describe trophic heterogeneity among harpacticoid species and spatio-temporal dietary shifts of individual species. At all stations, microphytobenthos played a central role in harpacticoid feeding although the pathway (direct/indirect) was uncertain. For a limited number of species, dietary contributions of suspended particulate matter and bacterial-derived energy were found. In salt marsh stations, consumption of Spartina alterniflora detrital matter was low, and in the sand flat station with poor harpacticoid diversity, co-occuring species showed dietary differentiation. Copepod taxa with complete trophic independence of microphytobenthos were Paraleptastacus spinicauda, Cletodidae and potentially also Ectinosomatidae. Moreover, Cletodidae were highly specialist feeders of chemoautotropic matter.

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