Functional traits unravel temporal changes in fish biomass production on artificial reefs

Type Article
Date 2019-03
Language English
Author(s) Cresson PierreORCID1, Le Direach Laurence2, Rouanet Elodie2, Goberville Eric3, Astruch Patrick2, Ourgaud Mélanie4, Harmelin-Vivien Mireille2, 4
Affiliation(s) 1 : Ifremer, Laboratoire Resources Halieutiques Manche Mer du Nord, F-62200, Boulogne sur Mer, France
2 : GIS Posidonie, OSU Institut Pythéas, Aix-Marseille Univ., Campus de Luminy, F-13288, Marseille, France
3 : Unité Biologie des organismes et écosystèmes aquatiques (BOREA), Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle, Sorbonne Université, Université de Caen Normandie, Université des Antilles, CNRS, IRD, CP53, 61, Rue Buffon, 75005, Paris, France
4 : Aix Marseille Univ., Université; de Toulon, CNRS, IRD, Mediterranean Institute of Oceanography (MIO) UM 110, F-13288, Marseille, France
Source Marine Environmental Research (0141-1136) (Elsevier BV), 2019-03 , Vol. 145 , P. 137-146
DOI 10.1016/j.marenvres.2019.02.018
WOS© Times Cited 36
Keyword(s) Artificial reefs, Mediterranean sea, Fish biomass production, Isotopic functional indices

Artificial reefs (ARs) are deployed worldwide as they are expected to support fisheries management. While the underlying mechanisms remain widely debated, production was recently determined as the most probable cause of increases in fish biomass. Changes in fish biomass in a temperate AR system were investigated from December 2008 to November 2015 by considering seven distinct functional groups, and isotopic functional indices were used to identify how these changes may have affected organic matter (OM) fluxes. Contrasting patterns of change were observed between functional trophic groups, highlighting that combining the biomass of all species present in a community is inappropriate for assessing AR-induced effects. Benthic sedentary species predominated (>75% of the total biomass) through massive production, with a 68-fold increase in mean biomass over the study period. Mobile species tended to vary seasonally, suggesting only a slight influence of AR. Zooplanktivores biomass decreased over the 6-year period, as a possible result of changes in environmental conditions. Isotopic indices helped to reveal both the community maturation and the importance of local OM sources not only in supporting fish biomass production but also in attracting pelagic species. Our results corroborate that production and attraction are two extremes of a range of contrasting patterns and highlight the importance of considering the specific responses of functional components of fish communities to accurately describe changes in AR functioning. Functional attributes such as trophic traits, habitat use and dispersal abilities must not be overlooked as they modulate fish species responses to the deployment of man-made rocky substrates.

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