Posts Tagged 'mollusks'

Transgenerational effects of short-term exposure to acidification and hypoxia on early developmental traits of the mussel Mytilus edulis


• Effects of ocean acidification and hypoxia on the early development of the mussel M. edulis were investigated.

• Positive carry-over effects of adult mussels exposed to low pH and hypoxia were observed on larvae performance.

• Low pH showed key negative effects on the early development of the mussel M. edulis.


Transgenerational effects of multiple stressors on marine organisms are emerging environmental themes. We thus experimentally tested for transgenerational effects of seawater acidification and hypoxia on the early development traits of the mussel Mytilus edulis. Fertilization rate, embryo deformity rate, and larval shell length were negatively impacted by acidification, while hypoxia had little effect except for increasing deformity rates under control pH conditions. Offspring from low pH/O2 parents were less negatively affected by low pH/O2 conditions than offspring from control parents; however, low pH/O2 conditions still negatively affected developmental traits in offspring from acclimated parents compared to control seawater conditions. Our results demonstrate that experimental seawater acidification and hypoxia can adversely affect early developmental traits of M. edulis and that parental exposure can only partially alleviate these impacts. If experimental observations hold true in nature, it is unlikely that parental exposure will confer larval tolerance to ocean acidification for M. edulis.

Continue reading ‘Transgenerational effects of short-term exposure to acidification and hypoxia on early developmental traits of the mussel Mytilus edulis’

Acid–base physiology over tidal periods in the mussel Mytilus edulis: size and temperature are more influential than seawater pH

Ocean acidification (OA) studies to date have typically used stable open-ocean pH and CO2 values to predict the physiological responses of intertidal species to future climate scenarios, with few studies accounting for natural fluctuations of abiotic conditions or the alternating periods of emersion and immersion routinely experienced during tidal cycles. Here, we determine seawater carbonate chemistry and the corresponding in situ haemolymph acid–base responses over real time for two populations of mussel (Mytilus edulis) during tidal cycles, demonstrating that intertidal mussels experience daily acidosis during emersion. Using these field data to parameterize experimental work we demonstrate that air temperature and mussel size strongly influence this acidosis, with larger mussels at higher temperatures experiencing greater acidosis. There was a small interactive effect of prior immersion in OA conditions (pHNBS 7.7/pCO2 930 µatm) such that the haemolymph pH measured at the start of emersion was lower in large mussels exposed to OA. Critically, the acidosis induced in mussels during emersion in situ was greater (ΔpH approximately 0.8 units) than that induced by experimental OA (ΔpH approximately 0.1 units). Understanding how environmental fluctuations influence physiology under current scenarios is critical to our ability to predict the responses of key marine biota to future environmental changes.

Continue reading ‘Acid–base physiology over tidal periods in the mussel Mytilus edulis: size and temperature are more influential than seawater pH’

Nano-ZnO impairs anti-predation capacity of marine mussels under seawater acidification


• The anti-predation behavior of mussels is induced by predator.

• Low pH and nano-ZnO synergistically reduced the anti-predation behavior of mussels.

• Nano-ZnO and seawater acidification may change the predator-prey dynamics in the environment.


Artificial nanoparticles and ocean acidification (OA) caused by the rapid increase of CO2 absorbed by the ocean are both ecologically hazardous to marine organisms. The combined effects of the two environmental stressors on the anti-predation ability of marine mussels were studied. Mytilus coruscus was exposed to three different gradient concentrations of nano-ZnO (0, 2.5, 10 mg/L) in combination of two pH levels (7.7 and 8.1). The crab Charybdis japonica was used as its predator. During the experiment, anti-predator indexes, including number of byssus threads (NBT), shell-closing strength (SCS), diameter of byssus thread (BTD), length of byssus thread (BTL), cumulative length of byssus thread (CBTL) and cumulative volume of byssus thread (CBTV) were studied. The results showed that predator induced the anti-predation responses in M. coruscus, and NBT, SCS, BTL, CBTL and CBTV were significantly increased. Under the conditions of pH 7.7 and 10 mg/L nano-ZnO, NBT, SCS, BTD, BTL, CBTL, and CBTV were significantly reduced. What’s more, significant interactions among pH, nano-ZnO and predator were observed in CBTL and CBTV. Therefore, the joint treatment of nano-ZnO and low pH reduces the adhesion strength of byssus thread and may increase the probability of mussels being preyed.

Continue reading ‘Nano-ZnO impairs anti-predation capacity of marine mussels under seawater acidification’

Context-dependence of abiotic and biotic factors influencing performance of juvenile clams


• We found site-level variability in performance of two sizes of juvenile Manila clams.

• Field experiments concurrently assessed the roles of biotic and abiotic variables.

• Performance was particularly impaired at one site with hot summer porewater temperatures.

• Under greater abiotic stress, smaller clams suffered more losses than large.

• Salinity, elevation, and pH were less important to survival than was predator density.


Post-settlement survival and growth of bivalves can be limited by abiotic and biotic factors, both of which are spatially variable. Rarely has the importance of these factors been tested concurrently in the field. Our study spanned three spatial scales in estuarine waters of Washington state (Region: north vs. south; Within-region: fresher vs. saline; Within-site: mid- vs. low-tidal elevation). Predator access and sediment conditions were manipulated in a crossed experimental design, with juvenile (3-mm and 6-mm) Manila clams (Ruditapes philippinarum) outplanted in open- or closed-top mesh tubes. We found differences between treatments that appeared only at sites with cancrid crabs, suggesting that predators, rather than emigration, likely reduced numbers of clams in open tubes. We had hypothesized that clams at lower tidal elevations, which experience longer immersion times, would show improved growth but reduced survivorship because of greater exposure to marine predators. However, these patterns were evident at only one of three sites (lower-elevation treatments were lost at the fourth). The larger size class of clams was more tolerant of abiotic stressors at all sites, but the magnitude of difference in survival between size classes was sometimes dependent on other treatments. The maximum predator effect on survival was 74% (north, high salinity, low-intertidal site), whereas the maximum abiotic effect appeared as 62% lower survival and 59% slower growth for 3-mm clams at another site (north, fresher). In laboratory trials, high water temperatures (28–32 °C) and low salinity (5–15) acted synergistically to cause juvenile clam (6–12 mm) mortality, whereas clams tolerated each of these stressors alone. Context-dependence in the relative importance of predation and abiotic stressors was apparent in our results, but contrary to expectations, abiotic stressors did not characterize southern or fresher sites. Instead, extreme high temperatures occurred at the site with the wide tidal flat rather than in the south, and the within-region salinity differences appeared not to exceed tolerances of juvenile clams.

Continue reading ‘Context-dependence of abiotic and biotic factors influencing performance of juvenile clams’

Physical factors affecting oyster diversity and distribution in southern Thailand

Aim : Studies on oyster population dynamic is essential for effective oyster aquaculture.Bandon Bay in Southern Thailand is a major shellfish aquaculture site of high commercial value. The aim of this study was to evaluate the influence of environmental factors on oyster diversity and their distribution in Bandon Bay. Methodology: Adult oysters were collected from eight aquaculture sites during low tide and their body sizes were measured. Monthly, transparency, salinity, pH, dissolved oxygen, biochemical oxygen demand, alkalinity, ammonium (NH4-N),nitrite, nitrate and phosphate were recorded from Surat Thani Coastal Fisheries Research and Development Centre, Department of Fisheries. Results : Three oyster species were observed: Crassostrea belcheri, Crassostrea lugubris and Saccostrea forskalii, however, C. belcheri was most abundant at most locations. Oyster density in Bandon Bay was mostly influenced by alkalinity, followed by salinity, pH, NO3and NH4-N. Interpretation : Since oyster reproduction, survival and shell development depend on environmental factors, thus studies on relationships between environmental factors and oyster occurrence/density may provide a better understanding about the community structures and spatial dynamics of oysters, as well as how oysters respond to environmental changes.

Continue reading ‘Physical factors affecting oyster diversity and distribution in southern Thailand’

Impact of ocean acidification on the energy metabolism and antioxidant responses of the Yesso scallop (Patinopecten yessoensise)

Ocean acidification (OA), which is caused by increasing levels of dissolved CO2 in the ocean, is a major threat to marine ecosystems. Multiple lines of scientific evidence show that marine bivalves, including scallops, are vulnerable to OA due to their poor capacities to regulate extracellular ions and acid-based status. However, the physiological mechanisms of scallops responding to OA are not well understood. In this study, we evaluated the effects of 45 days of exposure to OA (pH 7.5) on the energy metabolism and antioxidant capability of Yesso scallops. Some biochemical markers related to energy metabolism (e.g., content of glycogen and ATP, activity of ATPase, lactate dehydrogenase, glutamate oxaloacetate transaminase, and glutamate-pyruvate transaminase), antioxidant capacity (e.g., reactive oxygen species level, activity of superoxide dismutase, and catalase) and cellular damage (e.g., lipid peroxidation level) were measured. Our results demonstrate that the effects of the reduced pH (7.5) on scallops are varied in different tissues. The energy reserves are mainly accumulated in the adductor muscle and hepatopancreas. Yesso scallops exhibit energy modulation by increasing lactate dehydrogenase activities to stimulate anaerobic metabolism. The highly active Na+/K+-ATPase and massive ATP consumption in the mantle and gill indicate that a large amount of energy was allocated for the ion regulation process to maintain the acid-base balance in the reduced-pH environment. Moreover, the increase in the reactive oxygen species level and the superoxide dismutase and catalase activities in the gill and adductor muscle, indicate that oxidative stress was induced after long-term exposure to the reduced-pH environment. Our findings indicate that the effects of OA are tissue-specific, and physiological homeostasis could be modulated through different mechanisms for Yesso scallops.

Continue reading ‘Impact of ocean acidification on the energy metabolism and antioxidant responses of the Yesso scallop (Patinopecten yessoensise)’

Pacific geoduck (Panopea generosa) resilience to natural pH variation

Pacific geoduck aquaculture is a growing industry, however little is known about how geoduck respond to varying environmental conditions, or how production might be impacted by low pH associated with ocean acidification. Ocean acidification research is increasingly incorporating multiple environmental drivers and natural pH variability into biological response studies for more complete understanding of the effects of projected ocean conditions. In this study, eelgrass habitats and environmental heterogeneity across four estuarine bays were leveraged to examine low pH effects on geoduck under different natural regimes, using proteomics to assess physiology. Juvenile geoduck were deployed in eelgrass and adjacent unvegetated habitats for 30 days while pH, temperature, dissolved oxygen, and salinity were monitored. Across the four bays pH was lower in unvegetated habitats compared to eelgrass habitats, however this did not impact geoduck growth, survival, or proteomic expression patterns. However, across all sites temperature and dissolved oxygen corresponded to growth and protein expression patterns. Specifically, three protein abundance levels (trifunctional-enzyme β-subunit, puromycin-sensitive aminopeptidase, and heat shock protein 90-⍺) and shell 16 growth positively correlated with dissolved oxygen variability and inversely correlated with mean 17 temperature. These results demonstrate that geoduck are resilient to low pH in a natural setting, 18 and other abiotic factors (i.e. temperature, dissolved oxygen variability) may have a greater 19 influence on geoduck physiology. In addition this study contributes to the understanding of how 20 eelgrass patches influences water chemistry.

Continue reading ‘Pacific geoduck (Panopea generosa) resilience to natural pH variation’

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Ocean acidification in the IPCC AR5 WG II

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