Musical Chairs on Temperate Reefs: Species Turnover and Replacement Within Functional Groups Explain Regional Diversity Variation in Assemblages Associated With Honeycomb Worms

Type Article
Date 2021-05
Language English
Author(s) Muller Alexandre1, Poitrimol Camille1, 2, Nunes FlaviaORCID1, Boye AurelienORCID1, Curd AmeliaORCID1, Desroy NicolasORCID3, Firth Louise B4, Bush Laura5, Davies Andrew J6, Lima Fernando P7, Marzloff MartinORCID1, Meneghesso Claudia7, 8, Seabra Rui7, Dubois StanislasORCID1
Affiliation(s) 1 : Ifremer, Centre de Bretagne, DYNECO, Laboratory of Coastal Benthic Ecology, Plouzané, France
2 : Sorbonne Université, Station Biologique de Roscoff, UMR 7144, Adaptation et Diversité en Milieu Marin, Roscoff, France
3 : Ifremer, Laboratoire Environnement et Ressources Bretagne Nord, Dinard, France
4 : School of Biological and Marine Sciences, University of Plymouth, Plymouth, United Kingdom
5 : FUGRO GB Marine Limited, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, United Kingdom
6 : Department of Biological Sciences, University of Rhode Island, Kingston, RI, United States
7 : CIBIO-InBIO, Centro de Investigação em Biodiversidade e Recursos Genéticos, Universidade do Porto, Vairão, Portugal
8 : Departamento de Biologia, Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade do Porto, Porto, Portugal
Source Frontiers In Marine Science (2296-7745) (Frontiers Media), 2021-05 , Vol. 8 , N. 654141 , P. 18p.
DOI 10.3389/fmars.2021.654141
WOS© Times Cited 2
Keyword(s) biodiversity, taxonomic diversity, functional diversity, ecosystem engineer, reef, turnover

Reef-building species are recognized as having an important ecological role and as generally enhancing the diversity of benthic organisms in marine habitats. However, although these ecosystem engineers have a facilitating role for some species, they may exclude or compete with others. The honeycomb worm Sabellaria alveolata (Linnaeus, 1767) is an important foundation species, commonly found from northwest Ireland to northern Mauritania, whose reef structures increase the physical complexity of the marine benthos, supporting high levels of biodiversity. Local patterns and regional differences in taxonomic and functional diversity were examined in honeycomb worm reefs from 10 sites along the northeastern Atlantic to explore variation in diversity across biogeographic regions and the potential effects of environmental drivers. While taxonomic composition varied across the study sites, levels of diversity remained relatively constant along the European coast. Assemblages showed high levels of species turnover compared to differences in richness, which varied primarily in response to sea surface temperatures and sediment content, the latter suggesting that local characteristics of the reef had a greater effect on community composition than the density of the engineering species. In contrast, the functional composition of assemblages was similar regardless of taxonomic composition or biogeography, with five functional groups being observed in all sites and only small differences in abundance in these groups being detected. Functional groups represented primarily filter-feeders and deposit-feeders, with the notable absence of herbivores, indicating that the reefs may act as biological filters for some species from the local pool of organisms. Redundancy was observed within functional groups that may indicate that honeycomb worm reefs can offer similar niche properties to its associated assemblages across varying environmental conditions. These results highlight the advantages of comparing taxonomic and functional metrics, which allow identification of a number of ecological processes that structure marine communities.

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Muller Alexandre, Poitrimol Camille, Nunes Flavia, Boye Aurelien, Curd Amelia, Desroy Nicolas, Firth Louise B, Bush Laura, Davies Andrew J, Lima Fernando P, Marzloff Martin, Meneghesso Claudia, Seabra Rui, Dubois Stanislas (2021). Musical Chairs on Temperate Reefs: Species Turnover and Replacement Within Functional Groups Explain Regional Diversity Variation in Assemblages Associated With Honeycomb Worms. Frontiers In Marine Science, 8(654141), 18p. Publisher's official version : , Open Access version :