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Gut contents and isotopic profiles of Salpa fusiformis and Thalia democratica

Ahmad Ishak, NH, Clementson, LA, Eriksen, RS ORCID: 0000-0002-5184-2465, van den Enden, RL, Williams, GD ORCID: 0000-0003-1769-8356 and Swadling, KM ORCID: 0000-0002-7620-841X 2017 , 'Gut contents and isotopic profiles of Salpa fusiformis and Thalia democratica' , Marine Biology, vol. 164 , pp. 1-10 , doi: 10.1007/s00227-017-3174-1.

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Abstract

Little is known about the diet of planktonic tunicates such as salps, which can comprise around 80% of zooplankton abundance under bloom conditions. The gut contents of solitary and aggregate phases of the salps Thalia democratica and Salpa fusiformis were analysed with scanning electron microscopy (SEM), high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and stable isotope analyses (SIA) to describe their diets under field conditions. The gut contents contained representatives of diatoms, dinoflagellates, haptophyte flagellates (Order Prymnesiales and Coccolithophorales), prasinophytes (Order Chlorodendrales) and, in a few instances, copepods (Crustacea). SEM confirmed the presence of many species of phytoplankton in the salp guts and was broadly supported by HPLC and SIA. The dominant peaks in the HPLC chromatograms corresponded to fucoxanthin, alloxanthin, chlorophyll b and β-carotene, indicating the ingestion of diatoms, cryptophytes and green algae. Solitary stages of both S. fusiformis and T. democratica fed on items that were not common in the phytoplankton samples, namely coccolithophores and copepods, respectively.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Ahmad Ishak, NH and Clementson, LA and Eriksen, RS and van den Enden, RL and Williams, GD and Swadling, KM
Keywords: salps, chromatography, biomarkers, SEM
Journal or Publication Title: Marine Biology
Publisher: Springer-Verlag
ISSN: 0025-3162
DOI / ID Number: 10.1007/s00227-017-3174-1
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2017 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg

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