Abstract


WARMING AND ACDIFICATIONALTER SKELETAL MORPHOLOGY OF THE REEF-BUILDING CORAL SIDERASTREA SIDEREA

Increasing ocean temperatures and decreasing seawater pH threaten coral reefs worldwide. Controlled laboratory experiments were conducted to investigate and quantify the effects of temperature (25, 28, 32°C) and CO2-induced ocean acidification (PCO2 = 324, 477, 604, 2553 µatm) on the skeletal morphology of the resilient Caribbean reef-building coral Siderastrea siderea over a 95-day interval. Post-treatment S. siderea corallites were imaged via stereomicroscopy to evaluate effects of warming and acidification on corallite height and infilling. Reduced (25°C) and elevated (32°C) temperatures both resulted in increased corallite height but decreased corallite infilling relative to the control. In contrast, corals reared under the lowest (324 µatm) and highest PCO2 treatments (2553 µatm) exhibited both decreased corallite height and decreased corallite infilling relative to the control. Interestingly, warming (32°C) and acidification (604 µatm PCO2) projected for the end of the century both resulted in increased corallite height and reduced corallite infilling relative to the control. Our results suggest that corals exposed to increased warming or acidification will modify the skeletal morphology of S. siderea by the end of the 21st century, which may exacerbate observed declines in coral health across Caribbean reef systems.

Authors

Cobleigh, K. A., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA, kathryn.cobleigh@me.com

Foguel, A., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA

Roycroft, M., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA

Armstrong, P., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA

Davies, S. W., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Ries, J. B., Northeastern University , USA

Castillo, K. D., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Details

Oral presentation

Session #:32
Date: 06/23/2016
Time: 14:30
Location: 314

Presentation is given by student: No