Modelling the Seasonal Growth of the Brown Seaweed Fucus Vesiculosus in the Kiel Outdoor Benthocosms.

Graiff, A., Eggert, A., Radtke, H., Karsten, U. and Wahl, Martin (2017) Modelling the Seasonal Growth of the Brown Seaweed Fucus Vesiculosus in the Kiel Outdoor Benthocosms. Phycologia, 56 (SP4). pp. 67-68.

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Warming and acidification of the oceans as a consequence of increasing CO2-concentrations occur globally. In mesocosm experiments, the single and combined impact of elevated seawater temperature and pCO2 (1,100 ppm) on the brown alga Fucus vesiculosus together with its ssociated community (epiphytes and mesograzers) was studied in four consecutive experiments (from April 2013 to April 2014). Based on these experiments, a numerical boxmodel simulating the seasonal growth of F. vesiculosus in the Kiel Outdoor Benthocosms (KOBs) was developed. Nitrogen and carbon cycling in the KOBs were considered and relevant physiological and ecological processes were implemented. To run simulations under present and global change scenarios (e.g. warming, ocean acidification) the model was forced with atmospheric and hydrographic data of the Kiel fjord. DIN and DIC concentration in the water and Fucus growth as carbon and nitrogen increase were explicitly modelled. For instance, the following processes
were implemented: (1) Storage of carbon and nitrogen assimilates by Fucus, leading to a temporal decoupling of assimilation and growth. (2) Shading effects of epiphytes.
(3) Grazing by Idotea, Gammarus and Littorina on both Fucus and epiphytes, but with species-specific rates and preferences. At present, the model is a suitable scientific tool capable of integrating our knowledge about macroalgal processes, their growth and productivity in coastal areas. It further facilitates the communication of complex knowledge to lay persons. Ultimately, the development of a predictive model, which can be coupled to a 3D-high resolution western Baltic Sea model, is anticipated. This will allow observations on the consequences of global change for the wellbeing and distribution of F. vesiculosus in the western Baltic Sea. Understanding responses of macroalgae and of the associated community is important because changing global temperatures and elevated CO2 may affect the ecological role of Fucus as primary producer, carbon sink, water purifier, and ecosystem engineer in the coastal
ecosystem of the Baltic Sea.

Document Type: Article
Research affiliation: OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB3 Marine Ecology > FB3-EOE-B Experimental Ecology - Benthic Ecology
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: No
ISSN: 0031-8884
Related URLs:
Date Deposited: 06 Nov 2017 10:11
Last Modified: 01 Feb 2019 15:12

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