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Marine Ecology Progress Series

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MEPS 691:69-82 (2022)  -  DOI:

Failure of bivalve foundation species recruitment related to trophic changes during an extreme heatwave event

Alana Correia-Martins1, Réjean Tremblay1, Béatrice Bec2, Cécile Roques2, Ariane Atteia3, Angélique Gobet3, Marion Richard3, Masami Hamaguchi4, Toshihiro Miyajima5, Masakazu Hori4, Gilles Miron6, Stéphane Pouvreau7, Franck Lagarde3,*

1Institut des sciences de la mer, Université du Québec à Rimouski, 310 allée des Ursulines, Rimouski, QC G5L 3A1, Canada
2MARBEC, Université de Montpellier, CNRS, Ifremer, IRD, 34095 Montpellier, France
3MARBEC, Université de Montpellier, CNRS, Ifremer, IRD, 34200 Sète, France
4National Research Institute of Fisheries and Environment of Inland Sea, Fisheries Research Agency, Maruishi 2-17-5, Hatsukaichi, Hiroshima 739-0452, Japan
5Department of Chemical Oceanography, Atmosphere and Ocean Research Institute, University of Tokyo, Kashiwanoha 5-1-5, Kashiwa, Chiba 277-8564, Japan
6Département de biologie, Université de Moncton, 18 avenue Antonine-Maillet, Moncton, NB E1A 3E9, Canada
7LEMAR, Ifremer, CNRS, IRD, UBO, 29840 Argenton en Landunvez, France
*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: Bivalves are regulators of coastal lagoons and provide a wide range of ecosystem services. However, coastal lagoons are sensitive to climate change. Our objective was to describe the drivers of the cascade of ecological events that occurred during a summer heatwave and which resulted in recruitment failure of the Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas. Results show that elevated temperatures and salinity caused a shift in planktonic food availability toward smaller taxa. These trophic changes did not affect food accumulation by oyster larvae or their fatty acid composition but did affect post-metamorphosis success, with up to 24% fewer young metamorphosed postlarvae at some sites and no development of juveniles at all sites. This resulted in the failure of oyster recruitment and in the development of tubeworms, a trophic and spatial competitor that can better ingest small particles. This knowledge suggests that, in the context of marine heatwaves, the ecological limits of oyster larvae are narrower than their physiological limits.

KEY WORDS: Climate change · Phenology · Extreme heatwave · Bivalves · Pacific oyster · Crassostrea gigas · Reproduction · Larval ecology · Cascade of environmental effects · Trophic changes

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Cite this article as: Correia-Martins A, Tremblay R, Bec B, Roques C and others (2022) Failure of bivalve foundation species recruitment related to trophic changes during an extreme heatwave event. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 691:69-82.

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