Inter-Research > MEPS > v469 > p37-52  
Marine Ecology Progress Series

via Mailchimp

MEPS 469:37-52 (2012)  -  DOI:

Patterns in vertical distribution and their potential effects on transport of larval benthic invertebrates in a shallow embayment

Michelle J. Lloyd1,*, Anna Metaxas1, Brad deYoung2

1Department of Oceanography, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada B3H 4R2
2Department of Physics and Physical Oceanography, Memorial University, St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada A1B 3X7

ABSTRACT: Measurements of larval vertical distributions at high temporal and spatial resolutions as well as larval behavioural responses to environmental characteristics are needed to parameterize bio-physical models of larval dispersal or transport. We studied larval vertical distribution for 7 taxonomic groups (gastropods, bivalves, polychaetes, bryozoans, asteroids, carideans and brachyurans), with different morphology, swimming abilities and life-history strategies, and examined whether these vary with physical or biological factors and periodic cycles (diel period and tidal state) in the field. Using a pump, we collected plankton samples at 6 depths (3, 6, 9, 12, 18 and 24 m), over a 36 and a 26 h period. Temperature, salinity, fluorescence and current velocity were measured concurrently. Larval vertical distribution varied among taxonomic groups, but 4 patterns could be distinguished: (1) larvae exclusively in the mixed layer (asteroids), (2) larvae predominantly below the thermocline, halocline and pycnocline (gastropods, bivalves, polychaetes), (3) larvae associated predominantly with the fluorescence maximum (bryozoans and carideans) and (4) larval distribution varying dielly (gastropods, polychaetes, carideans and brachyurans). Based on flow velocities and depending on distribution, asteroid larvae were likely to be transported farther than those of bryozoans and carideans, while direction and magnitude of transport varied for the other larvae. For most taxonomic groups, behaviour observed in the field agreed with measured laboratory responses to relevant cues. For asteroids and bivalves, simple behavioural parameters can be generated that can be utilized to improve the accuracy of bio-physical models.

KEY WORDS: Vertical migration · Temperature · Fluorescence · Diel period · Water column structure · Larval behavior · Larval transport · Biophysical model parameters

Full text in pdf format
Supplementary material
Cite this article as: Lloyd MJ, Metaxas A, deYoung B (2012) Patterns in vertical distribution and their potential effects on transport of larval benthic invertebrates in a shallow embayment. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 469:37-52.

Export citation
Share:    Facebook - - linkedIn

 Previous article Next article