Effect of ocean acidification and temperature increase on the planktonic foraminifer Neogloboquadrina pachyderma (sinistral)

The present study investigated the effects of ocean acidification and temperature increase on Neogloboquadrina pachyderma (sinistral), the dominant planktonic foraminifer in the Arctic Ocean. Due to the naturally low concentration of CO32− in the Arctic, this foraminifer could be particularly sensitive to the forecast changes in seawater carbonate chemistry. To assess potential responses to ocean acidification and climate change, perturbation experiments were performed on juvenile and adult specimens by manipulating seawater to mimic the present-day carbon dioxide level and a future ocean acidification scenario (end of the century) under controlled (in situ) and elevated temperatures (1 and 4 °C, respectively). Foraminifera mortality was unaffected under all the different experiment treatments. Under low pH, N. pachyderma (s) shell net calcification rates decreased. This decrease was higher (30 %) in the juvenile specimens than decrease observed in the adults (21 %) ones. However, decrease in net calcification was moderated when both, pH decreased and temperature increased simultaneously. When only temperature increased, a net calcification rate for both life stages was not affected. These results show that forecast changes in seawater chemistry would impact calcite production in N. pachyderma (s), possibly leading to a reduction of calcite flux contribution and consequently a decrease in biologic pump efficiency.

Manno C., Morata, N. & Bellerby, R., in press. Effect of ocean acidification and temperature increase on the planktonic foraminifer Neogloboquadrina pachyderma (sinistral). Polar Biology. doi: 10.1007/s00300-012-1174-7. Article (subscription required).


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