Effects of temperature on the behaviour and metabolism of an intertidal foraminifera and consequences for benthic ecosystem functioning

Deldicq, N; Langlet, D; Delaeter, C; Beaugrand, G; Seuront, L; Bouchet, VMP. 2021 Effects of temperature on the behaviour and metabolism of an intertidal foraminifera and consequences for benthic ecosystem functioning. Scientific Reports, 11, 4013. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-83311-z

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Official URL: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-021-83311-z

Abstract/Summary

Heatwaves have increased in intensity, duration and frequency over the last decades due to climate change. Intertidal species, living in a highly variable environment, are likely to be exposed to such heatwaves since they can be emerged for more than 6 h during a tidal cycle. Little is known, however, on how temperature affects species traits (e.g. locomotion and behaviour) of slow-moving organisms such as benthic foraminifera (single-celled protists), which abound in marine sediments. Here, we examine how temperature influences motion-behaviour and metabolic traits of the dominant temperate foraminifera Haynesina germanica by exposing individuals to usual (6, 12, 18, 24, 30 °C) and extreme (high; i.e. 32, 34, 36 °C) temperature regimes. Our results show that individuals reduced their activity by up to 80% under high temperature regimes whereas they remained active under the temperatures they usually experience in the field. When exposed to a hyper-thermic stress (i.e. 36 °C), all individuals remained burrowed and the photosynthetic activity of their sequestered chloroplasts significantly decreased. Recovery experiments subsequently revealed that individuals initially exposed to a high thermal regime partially recovered when the hyper-thermic stress ceased. H. germanica contribution to surface sediment reworking substantially diminished from 10 mm3 indiv−1 day−1 (usual temperature) to 0 mm3 indiv−1 day−1 when individuals were exposed to high temperature regimes (i.e.above 32 °C). Given their role in sediment reworking and organic matter remineralisation, our results suggest that heatwaves may have profound long-lasting effects on the functioning of intertidal muddy ecosystems and some key biogeochemical cycles.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Additional Keywords: Behavioural ecology, climate change ecology, ecosystem ecology
Subjects: Marine Sciences
Divisions: Marine Biological Association of the UK > Ecosystems and Environmental Change > Global environmental change and marine ecosystems
Depositing User: Emily Smart
Date made live: 10 Sep 2021 11:11
Last Modified: 10 Sep 2021 11:11
URI: http://plymsea.ac.uk/id/eprint/9346

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