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Linking land and sea: Arthropod vectors for marine subsidies
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Botany.
Edith Cowan University, Perth, Australia.
Edith Cowan University, Perth, Australia.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Botany.
(English)Manuscript (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Several studies have shown nutrients and energy derived from marine plants and algae to subsidize shore ecosystems, increasing productivity and affecting food web dynamics and structure. In this study we have examined how the inland reach of such inflow effects depends on vectors carrying the marine inflow inland and on landscape structure. We examined the roles of arthropod vectors in carrying marine derived carbon inland in two very different shore ecosystems: shore meadows in Sweden with marine inflows of algae and emerging chironomid midges, and sandy beaches and shore dunes in Western Australia with marine inflows of algae and seagrass. In both systems we found a larger inland reach of the marine subsidy than could be accounted for by deposited material on shores alone, and that dipterans and spiders functioned as vectors for the inflow. Our results indicate that marine inflows are important for near-shore terrestrial ecosystems well above the water’s edge, and that this effect is largely due to arthropod vectors (mainly dipterans and spiders) in both low productivity sandy beach ecosystems at the Indian Ocean coast of Australia, and more productive shore meadows on the Baltic Sea coast of Sweden.

National Category
Ecology
Research subject
Plant Ecology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-27225OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-27225DiVA: diva2:213002
Available from: 2009-04-26 Created: 2009-04-26 Last updated: 2010-01-14Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. The Spider and the Sea: Effects of marine subsidies on the role of spiders in terrestrial food webs
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The Spider and the Sea: Effects of marine subsidies on the role of spiders in terrestrial food webs
2009 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The purpose of this study was to identify if terrestrial arthropod predators on Baltic Sea shores vary in their use of marine versus terrestrial food items, and to construct a bottom-up food web for Baltic Sea shores. The inflow of marine nutrients in the area consists mainly of marine algal detritus and emerging aquatic insects (e.g. phantom midges, Chironomidae). Diets of coastal arthropods were examined using carbon and nitrogen stable isotope analysis, and a two source mixing model was used to examine proportions of marine carbon to diets. The results suggest that spiders are the terrestrial predators mainly utilizing nutrients and energy of marine origin on Baltic Sea shores, while insect predators such as beetles and hemipterans mainly utilize nutrients and energy derived from terrestrial sources, possibly due to differences in hunting behaviour. That spiders are the predators that benefit the most from the marine inflow suggest that eventual effects of marine subsidies for the coastal ecosystem as a whole are likely mediated by spiders.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Botany, Stockholm University, 2009. 44 p.
Keyword
marine subsidies, food webs, stable isotopes, shore ecosystems, predators, spiders, Pardosa, algae, emerging insects
National Category
Ecology
Research subject
Plant Ecology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-27227 (URN)978-91-7155-877-0 (ISBN)
Public defence
2009-06-05, föreläsningssalen, Botanicum, Lilla Frescativägen 5, Stockholm, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2009-05-14 Created: 2009-04-26 Last updated: 2009-04-27Bibliographically approved

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