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Title

Prey-capture rates in four Mediterranean cold water corals

AuthorsTsounis, Georgios ; Orejas, Covadonga ; Reynaud, Stéphanie; Gili, Josep Maria ; Allemand, Denis; Ferrier-Pagès, Christine
KeywordsCold-water corals
Grazing rates
Colony size
Trophic ecology
Benthic-pelagic coupling
Issue DateJan-2009
PublisherInter Research
CitationMarine Ecology Progress Series 398: 149-155 (2009)
AbstractLittle is known about the basic biology of deep-water coral species. In this study, we experimentally assessed the rates of ingestion of Artemia salina adults and nauplii by the 4 Mediterranean cold water coral species Dendrophyllia cornigera, Desmophyllum cristagalli, Madrepora oculata, and Lophelia pertusa. All species ingested A. salina in adult and nauplii forms. L. pertusa showed the highest grazing rate for both prey types, whereas M. oculata showed the lowest capture rates among the 4 species, and was practically unable to ingest adult prey. Capture rates of the 4 coral species ranged between 5 and 8 adult A. salina, and 50 and 280 nauplii polyp-1 h-1. Surprisingly, both capture rates and carbon uptake (adult Artemia ingestion: 994 to 3542 μg C polyp-1 h-1; nauplii ingestion: 78.1 to 462 μg C polyp-1 h-1) were within the range of values found in some tropical corals (which often ingest 0.004 to 3600 prey items polyp-1 h-1). The results show that the capture rates and energy input of the studied cold water coral species appear to be on a level that is comparable to that of other corals, even tropical zooxanthellate species. © Inter-Research 2010 · www.int-res.com
Description7 pages, 2 figures, 1 table, supplementary videos
Publisher version (URL)https://doi.org/10.3354/meps08312
URIhttp://hdl.handle.net/10261/84294
DOIhttp://dx.doi.org/10.3354/meps08312
Identifiersdoi: 10.3354/meps08312
issn: 0171-8630
e-issn: 1616-1599
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