Lytocarpia myriophyllum, the biggest hydroid of the Mediterranean, lives at soft bottoms. It is severely threatened by bottom trawling activities. To assess its possible influence on trophodynamics and biodiver- sity of surrounding sediments, we compared the organic matter content and biochemical composition, and meiofaunal biodiversity in sediments below L. myriophyllum colonies and in surrounding bare sediments. Below L. myriophyllum sediments, the protein to carbohydrate ratio, the lipid contents and meiofaunal abundance showed values higher than in bare sediments, suggesting that L. myriophyllum may influ- ence the availability of resources for benthic consumers. The richness of meiofaunal taxa and nematode species generally decreased from below the colonies to bare sediments suggesting that the presence of L. myriophyllum colonies can have a certain influence also on benthic biodiversity. The possible influence of L. myriophyllum on trophodynamics and biodiversity of neighbouring soft bottoms claims for efforts to increase our knowledge about the trophodynamics of mesophotic coral forests and to develop adequate measures of conservation of these important and threatened habitats.

Do colonies of Lytocarpia myriophyllum, L. 1758 (Cnidaria, Hydrozoa) affect the biochemical composition and the meiofaunal diversity of surrounding sediments?

PUSCEDDU, ANTONIO
2015

Abstract

Lytocarpia myriophyllum, the biggest hydroid of the Mediterranean, lives at soft bottoms. It is severely threatened by bottom trawling activities. To assess its possible influence on trophodynamics and biodiver- sity of surrounding sediments, we compared the organic matter content and biochemical composition, and meiofaunal biodiversity in sediments below L. myriophyllum colonies and in surrounding bare sediments. Below L. myriophyllum sediments, the protein to carbohydrate ratio, the lipid contents and meiofaunal abundance showed values higher than in bare sediments, suggesting that L. myriophyllum may influ- ence the availability of resources for benthic consumers. The richness of meiofaunal taxa and nematode species generally decreased from below the colonies to bare sediments suggesting that the presence of L. myriophyllum colonies can have a certain influence also on benthic biodiversity. The possible influence of L. myriophyllum on trophodynamics and biodiversity of neighbouring soft bottoms claims for efforts to increase our knowledge about the trophodynamics of mesophotic coral forests and to develop adequate measures of conservation of these important and threatened habitats.
ecosystem engineers; hydrozoa; Mediterranean Sea; meiofauna; nematodes; organic matter; Earth and Planetary Sciences (all); 2300; Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics; Ecology
File in questo prodotto:
File Dimensione Formato  
0101 Cerrano et al 2015 Chem Ecol.pdf

Solo gestori archivio

Tipologia: versione editoriale
Dimensione 447.19 kB
Formato Adobe PDF
447.19 kB Adobe PDF   Visualizza/Apri   Richiedi una copia

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11584/133196
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus 14
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 13
social impact