Campana, Gabriela Laura, Zacher, Katharina, Fricke, Anna ORCID:, Molis, Markus, Wulff, Angela, Liliana Quartino, María and Wiencke, Christian (2009) Drivers of colonization and succession in polar benthic macro- and microalgal communities. Botanica Marina, 52 (6). DOI

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Information on succession in marine benthic primary producers in polar regions is very scarce, particularly with regard to effects of abiotic and biotic drivers of community structure. Primary succession begins with rapid colonizers, such as diatoms and ephemeral macroalgae, whereas slow, highly seasonal recruitment and growth are characteristic of annual or perennial seaweed species. Colonization of intertidal and subtidal assemblages on polar rocky shores is severely affected by physical disturbance and by seasonal changes in abiotic conditions. Biotic factors, such as grazing, can strongly affect colonization patterns and also alter competitive interactions among benthic algae. Ambient UV radiation affects the diversity of macroalgal communities during early and later stages of succession. In contrast, microalgal assemblages have high tolerance to UV stress. Climate warming could alter algal latitudinal distribution and favor invasion of polar regions by cold-temperate species. Reduced sea ice cover and retreating glaciers could expand colonization areas but alter light, salinity, sedimentation and disturbance processes. Although the key role of macroalgae in coastal systems and, to a much reduced extent, the importance of microphytobenthos have been documented for polar regions, information on the successional process is incomplete and will benefit from further ecological studies.

Document Type: Article
Programme Area: UNSPECIFIED
Research affiliation: Ecology > Algae and Seagrass Ecology
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: No
ISSN: 0006-8055
Date Deposited: 24 Feb 2020 12:46
Last Modified: 01 Oct 2020 13:00

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