Observations on recruitment, growth and ecology in a diverse living brachiopod community, Doubtful Sound, Fiordland, New Zealand.

Lee, D. E. and Robinson, J. H. and Witman, J. D. and Copeland, S. E. and Harper, E. M. and Smith, F. and Lamare, M. (2011) Observations on recruitment, growth and ecology in a diverse living brachiopod community, Doubtful Sound, Fiordland, New Zealand. Special Papers in Palaeontology, 84. pp. 177-191.

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Many aspects of brachiopod recruitment, settle­ment and ecology remain unknown. This study analysed bra­chiopod settlement and recruitment patterns for a diverse range of brachiopod species in shallow-water mid-latitude communities at five sites in Doubtful Sound, Fiordland, New Zealand. Recruitment plates (slate tiles) with various treat­ments (caged, fenced, open) to investigate the effects of pre­dators and grazers were attached to near-vertical fiord walls for periods of 12, 22, and 32 months between 1993 and 1995. The thirty tiles studied were colonized by a wide range of epibionts, including about 4000 individuals belonging to five species of brachiopods: the rhynchonellide Notosaria nig­ricans and the terebratulides Liothyrella neozelanica, Calloria inconspicua, Terebratella sanguinea and Neoaemula vector. Our observations are consistent with annual and seasonal spawning in the species studied, taking place in late summer (February) for one species (Liothyrella), and early winter (May and June) for Notosaria, Terebratella and Calloria. There may be a second less intense spawning episode in spring. Brachiopod recruitment was relatively high, but the population structure was undercut by high mortality, with few brachiopods surviving for more than 2 years. Low repli­cation of recruitment tiles under different conditions pre­cluded the use of statistical treatments. However, the principal determinants of the density and species richness patterns of the brachiopods appear to relate to the length of time the tiles were deployed (for one, two or three spawning cycles), and the diversity and density of brachiopod species attached to the adjacent fiord walls. Water depth, substratum differences and predator exclusion factors appear less signifi­cant. Growth rates of up to 5 mm/year were observed for several species. Key words: Brachiopoda, recruitment, growth rates, Recent, Doubtful Sound, New Zealand, epifaunal colonization exper­iments.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 2010AREP; IA60;
Subjects: 04 - Palaeobiology
Divisions: 04 - Palaeobiology
Journal or Publication Title: Special Papers in Palaeontology
Volume: 84
Page Range: pp. 177-191
Depositing User: Sarah Humbert
Date Deposited: 28 May 2010 16:09
Last Modified: 23 Jul 2013 09:57
URI: http://eprints.esc.cam.ac.uk/id/eprint/1404

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