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Selective feeding and microalgal consumption rates by crown-of-thorns seastar (Acanthaster cf. solaris) larvae

Mellin, Camille, Lugrin, Claire, Okaji, Ken, Francis, David S. and Uthicke, Sven 2017, Selective feeding and microalgal consumption rates by crown-of-thorns seastar (Acanthaster cf. solaris) larvae, Diversity, vol. 9, no. 1, pp. 1-16, doi: 10.3390/d9010008.

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Title Selective feeding and microalgal consumption rates by crown-of-thorns seastar (Acanthaster cf. solaris) larvae
Formatted title Selective feeding and microalgal consumption rates by crown-of-thorns seastar (Acanthaster cf. solaris) larvae
Author(s) Mellin, Camille
Lugrin, Claire
Okaji, Ken
Francis, David S.ORCID iD for Francis, David S. orcid.org/0000-0002-4829-6926
Uthicke, Sven
Journal name Diversity
Volume number 9
Issue number 1
Article ID 8
Start page 1
End page 16
Total pages 16
Publisher MDPI
Place of publication Basel, Switzerland
Publication date 2017-02
ISSN 1424-2818
Summary Outbreaks of the crown-of-thorns seastar (CoTS) represent a major cause of coral loss on the Great Barrier Reef. Outbreaks can be explained by enhanced larval survival supported by higher phytoplankton availability after flood events, yet little is known about CoTS larvae feeding behaviour, in particular their potential for selective feeding. Here, single- and mixed-species feeding experiment were conducted on CoTS larvae using five algae (Phaeodactylum tricornutum, Pavlova lutheri, Tisochrysis lutea, Dunaliella sp. and Chaetoceros sp.) and two algal concentrations (1000 and 2500 algae·mL−1). Cell counts using flow-cytometry at the beginning and end of each incubation experiment allowed us to calculate the filtration and ingestion rates of each species by CoTS larvae. In line with previous studies, CoTS larvae ingested more algae when the initial algal concentration was higher. We found evidence for the selective ingestion of some species (Chaetoceros sp., Dunaliella sp.) over others (P. lutheri, P. tricornutum). The preferred algal species had the highest energy content, suggesting that CoTS selectively ingested the most energetic algae. Ultimately, combining these results with spatio-temporal patterns in phytoplankton communities will help elucidate the role of larval feeding behaviour in determining the frequency and magnitude of CoTS outbreaks.
Language eng
DOI 10.3390/d9010008
Field of Research 030199 Analytical Chemistry not elsewhere classified
030102 Electroanalytical Chemistry
0301 Analytical Chemistry
0906 Electrical And Electronic Engineering
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2017, The Authors
Free to Read? Yes
Use Rights Creative Commons Attribution licence
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30093030

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: School of Life and Environmental Sciences
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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.