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Inhibitory effects of red algal extracts on larval settlement of the barnacle Balanus improvisus
Nylund, G.M.; Pavia, H. (2004). Inhibitory effects of red algal extracts on larval settlement of the barnacle Balanus improvisus. Mar. Biol. (Berl.) 143(5): 875-882.
In: Marine Biology. Springer: Heidelberg; Berlin. ISSN 0025-3162; e-ISSN 1432-1793, more
Peer reviewed article  

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  • Nylund, G.M.
  • Pavia, H.

    We examined the chemical antifouling properties of four sublittoral red algae, Chondrus crispus, Delesseria sanguinea, Osmundea ramosissima, and Polyides rotundus, which are all rarely fouled in the field. Two different approaches were used. Firstly, we tested the effects of lipophilic crude extracts on the settlement behaviour of cyprid larvae of the co-existing barnacle Balanus improvisus. Secondly, in a settlement preference experiment, we tested whether B. improvisus cyprid larvae settle on living algae when given a choice between natural algal surfaces and control surfaces. With this procedure, we were able to test both if the algae inhibit recruitment of cyprids, and if this inhibition is a result of chemistry. The settlement of B. improvisus larvae was strongly inhibited at concentrations estimated to be potentially ecologically relevant for all of the tested extracts. However, only C. crispus significantly inhibited settlement in the preference experiment, even though there was also a tendency for settlement inhibition on P. rotundus and O. ramosissima. In contrast, D. sanguinea seemed to stimulate settlement. This contradiction probably resulted from an extraction of metabolites that naturally occur only inside the alga. However, as this study shows, a combination of settlement assays with whole-cell extracts and preference tests of ecologically relevant fouling organisms on natural algal and control surfaces may be a useful procedure to avoid erroneous conclusions regarding natural antifouling roles of compounds based on settlement assays with only whole-cell extracts. Furthermore, this study also shows that production of inhibitory metabolites may explain the low degree of fouling, especially by B. improvisus, on C. crispus.

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