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Isotopic tracing of sediment components assimilated by epibiontic juveniles of Holothuria scabra (Holothuroidea)
Plotieau, T.; Lepoint, G.; Lavitra, T; Eeckhaut, I. (2014). Isotopic tracing of sediment components assimilated by epibiontic juveniles of Holothuria scabra (Holothuroidea). J. Mar. Biol. Ass. U.K. 94(7): 1485-1490. dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0025315414000502
In: Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom. Cambridge University Press/Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom: Cambridge. ISSN 0025-3154, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Keywords
    Holothuria (Metriatyla) scabra Jaeger, 1833 [WoRMS]; Holothuroidea [WoRMS]; Marine
Author keywords
    holothuroids; Holothuria scabra; isotopic tracers; deposit-feeder;sediment

Authors  Top 
  • Plotieau, T., more
  • Lepoint, G., more
  • Lavitra, T
  • Eeckhaut, I., more

Abstract
    Despite Holothuria scabra's wide distribution and status as one of the best candidates for sustaining the development of tropical sea cucumber aquaculture, very few data are available regarding the organic fraction it assimilates in practice. In this paper we report experimental results where H. scabra's diet was supplemented with various 15N-labelled organic fractions of sediment. We used juveniles weighing between 38 and 88 mg at the beginning of the experiment (~2 cm long and 30 days old). Their growth was measured over a four-week period and their 15N composition recorded. The results showed that H. scabra juveniles assimilated all added organic components from both dissolved and particulate fractions of the sediment. Bacteria seem to be an important food source for juveniles, even more so than microphytobenthos (diatoms).

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