Environmental optima for an ecosystem engineer: a multidisciplinary trait-based approach

Type Article
Date 2021-11
Language English
Author(s) Curd AmeliaORCID1, Boyé AurelienORCID1, Cordier Celine1, Pernet FabriceORCID2, Firth Louise B.3, Bush Laura E.4, Davies Andrew J.5, Lima Fernando P.6, Meneghesso Claudia6, 7, Quéré Claudie2, Seabra Rui6, Vasquez MickaelORCID1, Dubois StanislasORCID1
Affiliation(s) 1 : IFREMER, Centre de Bretagne, DYNECO LEBCO, 29280, Plouzané, France
2 : LEMAR CNRS/UBO/IRD/Ifremer, ZI pointe du diable, CS 10070, 29280, Plouzané, France
3 : School of Biological and Marine Sciences, University of Plymouth, Drake Circus, Plymouth, PL4 8AA, UK
4 : FUGRO GB Marine Limited, Heriot-Watt University, 1-9 The Curve, 32 Research Avenue North, Edinburgh, EH14 4AP, UK
5 : Department of Biological Sciences, University of Rhode Island, Kingston, RI, 02881, USA
6 : CIBIO-InBIO, Centro de Investigação em Biodiversidade e Recursos Genéticos, Universidade do Porto, Campus Agrário de Vairão, 4485-661, Vairão, Portugal
7 : Departamento de Biologia, Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade do Porto, R. Campo Alegre, s/n, 4169-007, Porto, Portugal
Source Scientific Reports (2045-2322) (Springer Science and Business Media LLC), 2021-11 , Vol. 11 , N. 1 , P. 22986 (12p.)
DOI 10.1038/s41598-021-02351-7
WOS© Times Cited 4

A complex interplay of biotic and abiotic factors underpins the distribution of species and operates across different levels of biological organization and life history stages. Understanding ecosystem engineer reproductive traits is critical for comprehending and managing the biodiversity-rich habitats they create. Little is known about how the reproduction of the reef-forming worm, Sabellaria alveolata, varies across environmental gradients. By integrating broad-scale environmental data with in-situ physiological data in the form of biochemical traits, we identified and ranked the drivers of intraspecific reproductive trait variability (ITV). ITV was highest in locations with variable environmental conditions, subjected to fluctuating temperature and hydrodynamic conditions. Our trait selection pointed to poleward sites being the most physiologically stressful, with low numbers of irregularly shaped eggs suggesting potentially reduced reproductive success. Centre-range individuals allocated the most energy to reproduction, with the highest number of intermediate-sized eggs, whilst equatorward sites were the least physiologically stressful, thus confirming the warm-adapted nature of our model organism. Variation in total egg diameter and relative fecundity were influenced by a combination of environmental conditions, which changed depending on the trait and sampling period. An integrated approach involving biochemical and reproductive traits is essential for understanding macro-scale patterns in the face of anthropogenic-induced climate change across environmental and latitudinal gradients.

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Curd Amelia, Boyé Aurelien, Cordier Celine, Pernet Fabrice, Firth Louise B., Bush Laura E., Davies Andrew J., Lima Fernando P., Meneghesso Claudia, Quéré Claudie, Seabra Rui, Vasquez Mickael, Dubois Stanislas (2021). Environmental optima for an ecosystem engineer: a multidisciplinary trait-based approach. Scientific Reports, 11(1), 22986 (12p.). Publisher's official version : https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-02351-7 , Open Access version : https://archimer.ifremer.fr/doc/00736/84819/