Effect of seawater turbulence on formation of coral primary polyp skeletons

S. Iwasaki, A. Suzuki, A. Iguchi, O. Sasaki, H. Kano, Y. Ohno, K. Enomoto

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debatepeer-review

Abstract

Though seawater movement is among the important factors that maintain healthy conditions on coral reefs, little is known about the effects of seawater turbulence on the growth of coral primary polyps. We cultured aposymbiotic primary polyps of Acropora digitifera with and without seawater turbulence and investigated how seawater turbulence affected the physical characteristics of the polyp skeleton. Results showed that seawater turbulence increased the amount of skeletal carbonate and directly influenced calcification of coral hosts. Three-dimensional morphological measurements by X-ray micro-computed tomography revealed that seawater turbulence increased the thickness of the skeletal branches of polyps. Greater thickness of the skeletal branches and increased horizontal growth may significantly enhance survival of primary coral polyps during early life stages before the establishment of algal symbioses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)939-944
Number of pages6
JournalCoral Reefs
Volume37
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Sep 1

Keywords

  • Acropora digitifera
  • Calcification
  • Micro X-ray CT
  • Primary polyp
  • Water motion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aquatic Science

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