[Coral-List] Larval biology research in La Parguera by Szmant group

Szmant, Alina szmanta at uncw.edu
Sat Aug 8 11:39:37 EDT 2009

Hi All:

My group is working on pH effects on Acropora palmata larvae and adults as well as developmental aspects and settlement cues of this species.  We are also collecting our spawn from Rincon as we have done for a number of years now.  But we are working out of the facilities of the Department of Marine Science of the University of Puerto Rico.

We also will be working with Montastraea faveolata next month.  Yesterday Dr. Ernesto Weil and I checked a few live tissue samples of Montastraea and found the eggs either small and immature or almost spawn size but no mature sperm were observed.  Thus I think Montastraea will exhibit at best a weak spawn this month in La Parguera.  The corals have suffered greatly from the 2005 bleaching and post-bleaching diseases (documented by E. Weil and his group) and last year produced poor quality eggs and larvae.  We'll see how they do.

We haven't taken the time to set up blogs but will post daily or so to Coral-Listas we have anything significant or interesting to share.

FYI, the seawater temperatures here are ca. 30 oC which by the temperature experiments we have conducted over the past few years (Randall and Szmant, Coral Reefs accepted for Acropora, and Miller and Szmant Honors thesis, in prep for Montastraea) reduce embryo survivorship and larval development buy 40 to 80 % over those raised at 28 oC.

Best wishes,

Alina Szmant

Dr. Alina M. Szmant
Professor of Marine Biology
Coral Reef Research Program, Center for Marine Science
University of North Carolina Wilmington
5600 Marvin K. Moss Lane
Wilmington NC 28409
Tel:  (910)962-2362; fax: (910)962-2410;  cell:  (910)200-3913

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