From behaviour to bathymetric ranges: examining the responses of marine invertebrates to hydrostatic pressure

Ammendolia, Justine (2017) From behaviour to bathymetric ranges: examining the responses of marine invertebrates to hydrostatic pressure. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Although hydrostatic pressure is one of the most prominent abiotic drivers of faunal bathymetric ranges, it is one of the least understood. As climate change drives warmer temperatures, it is hypothesized that benthic communities may undergo vertical shifts from shallow to deeper depths. Expanding our understanding of the impact of pressure on marine organisms is therefore important. Here, I first synthesized and analyzed >130 studies reporting survival of >260 shallow and deep-sea taxa after exposure to non-native pressure. Many deep-sea species survived and bred under low or atmospheric pressure (slightly below sea surface depth), especially those from higher latitudes, and tolerance in adults was influenced by phylum. Next, I used high-pressure chambers to test the response of several subtidal echinoderms to various pressure levels, durations and pH conditions. Responses to acute pressure shifts suggest that deep-sea species are relatively tolerant to depressurization, but shallow-water species are less likely to maintain critical behaviours if moved to pressures beyond their current bathymetric ranges.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Item ID: 12814
Additional Information: Includes bibliographical references.
Keywords: Hydrostatic pressure, IPOCAMP, Benthic invertebrates, Echinoderms, Climate change
Department(s): Science, Faculty of > Ocean Sciences
Date: July 2017
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Hydrostatic pressure--Physiological effect; Marine invertebrates--Ecology; Marine invertebrates--Vertical distribution.

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