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May 2015

By admin - Posted May 01, 2015 12:00 AM
Volume XVI, Issue V

Decreased growth of Stylophora pistillata with nutrient-driven elevated zooxanthellae density is largely explained by DIC limitation

By Alwin Hylkema (ab*), Tim Wijgerde (a*), Ronald Osinga on May 13, 2015 at 10:00 AM

High nutrient concentrations are generally known to adversely affect coral calcification. This reduction in calcification rate is often associated with increased zooxanthellae densities, but little is known about the mechanism underlying calcification inhibition. In this study, we assessed the limiting effects of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) on growth rates of Stylophora pistillata before and after five weeks of nitrogen and phosphorus enrichment. Nutrient enrichment resulted in a significant increase in zooxanthellae density and inhibition of calcification, measured using the alkalinity anomaly technique. DIC limitation was the main causative factor for this inhibition; a doubling of the bicarbonate concentration not only restored but greatly enhanced calcification rates of colonies with elevated zooxanthellae densities. At high bicarbonate concentration, no significant negative effect of nutrient enrichment on coral growth was found. The causal mechanism behind calcification inhibition due to nutrient enrichment is most likely increased competition for dissolved inorganic carbon, either among the zooxanthellae or between the coral host and its symbiotic dinoflagellates. This highly limiting effect of DIC on coral growth at elevated nutrient concentrations has important implications for coral aquaculture and husbandry.

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Coral Nutrition, Part Three: Amino Acids and Comments on Amino Acid Supplements

By Dana Riddle on May 06, 2015 at 09:00 AM

Dana Riddle continues his intensive exploration of coral nutrition. In part three of his series, he delves deep into the subject of amino acids, including a discussion about amino acid supplements marketed to reefkeepers.

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