Differences in Susceptibility to Salinity Stress in Populations of Perna viridis from Contaminated and Uncontaminated Sites in West Java, Indonesia.

Wendling, Carolin C. (2010) Differences in Susceptibility to Salinity Stress in Populations of Perna viridis from Contaminated and Uncontaminated Sites in West Java, Indonesia. (Diploma thesis), Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz, Mainz, Germany, 90 pp.

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The consequences of global change on marine biota, particularly the interactions between
human impacts and warming, are not well understood. An increasing frequency of extreme
weather events will lead to pronounced short-term fluctuations in environmental parameters
such as temperature, salinity and sedimentation in coastal ecosystems. At the same time,
human populations are growing and coastal waters are increasingly loaded with nutrients and
heavy metals. Direct effects of and interactions among these stressors will presumably alter
the structure and functioning of local ecosystems with negative consequences for the
economic and social systems that depend upon them. In this context, I investigated the stress
tolerance of populations of the Indopacific green mussel Perna viridis (Linn. 1758) stemming
from two coastal locations in West Java, Indonesia. P. viridis is a habitat forming species and
can determine the composition of benthic assemblages in these systems. The two study sites
differ in their abiotic conditions: Jakarta Bay is highly impacted by organic matter input and
pollution, while Tanjung Lesung at the Sunda Strait represents a benign environment with
low turbidity and almost no pollution. In laboratory experiments, I determined the mean
tolerance of the two populations towards reduced salinity by up to 13 and 18 units, by
measuring fluctuations in oxygen consumption, feces production and survival rates. My
results revealed that under reduced ambient salinity the responses were significantly different
between populations. More than 90% of the mussels stemming from Jakarta Bay survived
under reduced salinity levels, whereas individuals from the benign site exhibited a survival
rate of around 50% at reduced salinity levels, respectively. Furthermore, the deviation in
oxygen consumption and feces production from the normal performance under salinity stress
was significantly smaller in mussels from Jakarta Bay than in mussels from Tanjung Lesung.
Significant differences in survival and metabolic rates in the face of salinity stress suggest that
the origin of a population contributes substantially to its tolerance towards increasing
environmental stress. This study shows that anthropogenic impacts such as pollution and
eutrophication can influence the stress tolerance of local organisms, though it is rather a
combination of circumstances that determines whether those implications will have negative
or positive consequences on the mean stress tolerance of a population. The need to understand
patterns of interaction between climate change and pollution is a current issue and the gain of
knowledge is relevant for ecological and economic reasons in coastal ecosystems. Especially
in less developed countries, like Indonesia, the intensity of agriculture and industrialisation is
rising whereas environmental pollution control is not provided, yet, and so eutrophication and
Abstract 2
pollution of coastal waters will surely increase. This work emphasizes the potential relevance
of this so far widely ignored interaction between two man-made drivers of ecosystem change.

Document Type: Thesis (Diploma thesis)
Thesis Advisors: Johannesen, Jes and Wahl, Martin
Keywords: Benthic Ecology; GAME; Perna viridis; coastal ecosystems
Research affiliation: OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB3 Marine Ecology > FB3-EOE-B Experimental Ecology - Benthic Ecology
Refereed: No
Projects: GAME
Date Deposited: 05 Sep 2011 09:27
Last Modified: 13 Dec 2013 13:05
URI: http://oceanrep.geomar.de/id/eprint/12091

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