Ecological characteristics of coralligenous community in the eastern part of the Adriatic sea

Rodić, Petra (2015) Ecological characteristics of coralligenous community in the eastern part of the Adriatic sea. Doctoral thesis, Faculty of Science > Department of Biology.

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Coralligenous is the second most diverse and one of the most endangered habitats in the Mediterranean, important on national and European level. Because of its slow dynamics, it is vulnerable to different disturbances, especially climate change. In order to assess the state of coralligenous in the eastern part of the Adriatic Sea, structure and diversity of coralligenous as well as mortality signs of targeted species were investigated at ten stations alogn eastern Adriatic. At each station quadrats were photographed (5000 cm3 in triplets) between 20 and 40 meters depth and visuals census was performed at each station. High species diversity (247 taxa, in 13 groups) and high variability in structure along a depth gradient and across sites have been identified. Red incrusting algae (Peyssonnelia sp.) have shown the highest coverage. In general, shallower communities have shown difference from deeper ones. Acquired sea temperature series provide evidence of positive sea temperature trends and anomalies in the period 2009 - 2013, especially in the year 2012 (Lenga, 40 m, 37 days, >22°C). Higher mortality signs found at deeper depths might imply potential negative effect of temperature anomalies on sensitive species, although identified mortality cannot be considered significant. These results represent a significant contribution to the characterization of coralligenous in the Adriatic and emphasize the need for further research of the factors influencing structural variability and potential impact of future climate change.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral thesis)
Keywords: coralligenous, species diversity, structure, mortality, sea temperature anomalies
Supervisor: Kružić, Petar
Date: 2015
Number of Pages: 123
Subjects: NATURAL SCIENCES > Biology
Divisions: Faculty of Science > Department of Biology
Depositing User: Grozdana Sirotic
Date Deposited: 23 Dec 2015 11:41
Last Modified: 23 Dec 2015 11:41

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