Stream 3: Ecosystem structures and functions
Effects of anthropogenic stressors and environmental change on the performance of early life history stages of marine invertebrates
- K. Diele1, 2, L. Gimenez3
- 1 Edinburgh Napier University, UK
- 2 St Abbs Marine Station, UK
- 3 School of Ocean Sciences, Bangor University, UK
Orals and posters
Marine invertebrates form a pivotal role in many ecosystems, being at the base of food webs and performing essential ecosystem services. Persistence of their populations depends upon successful development of all life cycle stages. Larvae occur in 70% of the species and are considered as the most sensitive stage, along with embryos and early juveniles. These stages may thus act as critical population bottlenecks, especially in environments with increasing stress levels, such as in the oceans’ coastal zones. Rising temperatures can, for example, affect larval connectivity and survival, and cause mismatches between peaks of food production and timing of larval development, leading to recruitment failure. Many different stressors are present in today’s coastal waters, yet there is a critical gap of knowledge regarding the respective responses and adaptations of early stages of most invertebrate species. For example, the effects of acute versus chronic stress, as well as of variable exposure need to be better understood. This session will bring together scientists already working on these topics and stimulate others to discuss and engage. We invite contributions focussing on ocean acidification, thermal stress, chemical pollution, and on particularly little explored areas such as microplastics, noise pollution and effects of multiple stressors.