Seagrasses and Eutrophication: Interactions between seagrass photosynthesis, epiphytes, macroalgae and mussels
2011 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Seagrass meadows are highly productive, ecologically and economically valuable ecosystems. However, increased human activities along the coastal areas leading to processes such as eutrophication have resulted in the rapid loss and deterioration of seagrass ecosystems worldwide. This thesis focuses on the responses of seagrasses to increases in nutrients, subsequent increases in ephemeral algae, and changes in the physical-chemical properties of seawater induced by interaction with other marine biota. Both in situ and laboratory experiments conducted on the tropical seagrasses Cymodocea serrulata and Thalassia hemprichii revealed that increased concentrations of water column nutrients negatively affected seagrass photosynthesis by stimulating the growth of the epiphytic biomass on the seagrass leaves. Interaction between seagrasses and other marine organisms induced different responses in seagrass photosynthesis. Ulva intestinalis negatively affected the photosynthetic performance of the temperate seagrass Zostera marina both by reducing the light and by increasing the pH of the surrounding water. On the other hand, the coexistence of mussels Pinna muricata and seagrass Thalassia hemprichii enhanced the photosynthetic activity of the seagrass, but no effect on the mussels' calcification was recorded. This study demonstrates that seagrass productivity is affected by a multitude of indirect effects induced by nutrient over-enrichment, which act singly or in concert with each other. Understanding the responsive mechanisms involved is imperative to safeguard the ecosystem by providing knowledge and proposing measures to halt nutrient loading and to predict the future performance of seagrasses in response to increasing natural and human perturbations.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Botany, Stockholm University , 2011. , 44 p.
CO2, epiphytes, eutrophication, mussels, pH, Photosynthetic activities, seagrasses, Ulva
Research subject Plant Physiology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-55808ISBN: 978-91-7447-250-9OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-55808DiVA: diva2:407289
2011-05-06, Föresläsningssalen, Botanicum, Lilla Frescativägen 5, Stockholm, 13:00 (English)
Borum, Jens, Associate Professor
Björk, Mats, Associate ProfessorLyimo, Thomas J., Doctor
ProjectsSwedish Agency for Research Cooperation (Sida/SAREC) marine bilateral programme
At the time of the doctoral defense, the following papers were unpublished and had a status as follows: Papers 1, 3 and 4: Submitted. Paper 2: Manuscript.2011-04-142011-03-292011-04-13Bibliographically approved
List of papers