Kelp Forest

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Information about Kelp Forest

Published on May 18, 2009

Author: farawela


Slide 1: By Feryal Jamal Kherissat KELP FOREST Slide 2:  I know few things more surprising than to see this plant growing and flourishing amidst those breakers of the western ocean, which no mass of rock, let it be ever so hard, can long resist. Charles Darwin (1860) PHAEOPHYCEAE: BROWEN ALGAE : PHAEOPHYCEAE: BROWEN ALGAE Main pigments: Fucoxanthin chlorophylls a & c ß- carotene Food reserves: laminaran (polysaccharides of glucose) Mannitol (a sugar alcohol) Fat droplets Chloroplast: One or many per cell Thylakoids in stalks of 2 to 6 Surrounding by endoplasmic reticulm Kelp Anatomy : Kelp Anatomy Blade - leaf-like structure that use the sun's energy for photosynthesis. Stipe - stem-like structure. Pneumatocyst - (Float - air filled bladder ) at the base of each blade that keeps the plant up toward the surface as it gathers light for photosynthesis. Frond - the part which holds the plant to the ocean floor   Holdfast - doesn't supply water and nutrients to the rest of the plant. it keeps algae in place so currents and tides don't wash the organism away. Adaptations of Kelp : Adaptations of Kelp A complex, strong holdfast anchors the kelp to the substrate. A flexible blade moves with the motion of the waves. Growth occurs between the stipe and the blade instead of at the blade tip, where erosion happens. A hollow stipe offers some buoyancy to the kelp structure. Reproduction : Reproduction Diploid (2n) sporophyte generation (large leafy plants) spores haploid (n(gametophyte (male and female). The spores are found in sori located within special blades called sporophylls, located at the base of the plant. A single adult plant can produce many sporophylls, each sporophyll containing billions of spores. Microscopic gametophye, Giant Kelp Microscopic sporophyte, Giant Kelp Life cycle of a typical kelp Laminaria sp : Life cycle of a typical kelp Laminaria sp Slide 9: Kelp that has been ripped off it's moorings will sometime gather into what is known as drift kelp. This kelp floats and drifts with the currents. This living kelp can, under the right conditions, re-anchor itself in a new area. Kelp Bed Types : Kelp Bed Types The bladder kelps (giant kelps) Macrocystis, Nereocystis, Pelagophycus 20-30m, May be over 60m Competitive dominant alga. Northern limit set by hydrodynamic forces. Southern limit set by poor substrate & temperature/nutrients conditions. Macrocystis pyrifera The laminarian kelps North Atlantic (northern hemisphere ). Laminaria hyperborea. As much as 20m long. Eisenia arborea Laminaria hyperborea The Geographic Distribution Of Kelp Forests. : The Geographic Distribution Of Kelp Forests. DISTRUBUTION : DISTRUBUTION Extent of kelp beds depend on: Hard substrate must be available for attachment. Light. Clod temperature (absent in warm temperature and tropical area). Nutrients (Kelps limited by low nutrients). Slide 13: kelp forests are found in shallow rocky habitats along temperate coasts throughout the world. The area of the world’s oceans covered by kelp forests is comparable to that covered by coral reefs. Unlike corals, however, kelp thrives in cool nutrient rich water. Most extensive kelp forests are found on western continental margins, which are areas where extensive upwelling occurs. The Geographic Distribution Of Kelp Forests : The Geographic Distribution Of Kelp Forests Kelps And Nutrients : Kelps And Nutrients Nitrates and phosphates required nutrients for kelp productivity. Nitrates most often limiting. Kelps synthesize and store large quantities of nitrogenous organic compounds when available. These are remobilized when nitrates are not available in the surrounding seawater. This gives kelps a big competitive boost vs. space competitors. Kelp Growth And Translocation : Kelp Growth And Translocation Kelps translocate photosynthates from the areas of the blade exposed to the light to areas that need energy for growth or other activities. These combine to allow very large size. Translocation permits production of maximum blade production to maximize photosynthesis. Kelp store energy which can be used in dark periods to construct new blades in anticipation of the return of light. Ecosystem Architecture : Ecosystem Architecture The benthic assemblage is composed of other algal species, sessile organisms along the ocean bottom, and encrusting coralline algae . Bottom-canopy plants (Gelidium, plocamium). Understory-canopy kelps: A) lie near and along the sea floor (Laminaria). B) Extend a few meters above the sea floor and can grow in dense aggregations (Eisenia). Midwater and Surface-canopy kelps include the largest species and often constitute floating canopies that extend to the ocean surface (Macrocystis, Nereocysitis). The ecosystem includes three guilds of kelp and two guilds occupied by other algae Gelidium Eisenia arborea Kelp Productivity : Kelp Productivity Among the fastest growing plants in the world in either marine or terrestrial habitats. Maximum elongation rates in the giant kelp Macrocystis pyriferaare on the order of 12 -18 inches per day. kelp forests are among the most productive communities in the world. Estimates of productivity comparable to tropical rain forests. The biomass of the primary producers is two orders of magnitude less in the kelp forest. which really points to the high productivity of kelp relative to land plants Slide 21: Only about 5-10 % of the primary production is consumed by grazers in either terrestrial or kelp forests. In terrestrial forests most of the biomass accumulate on the ground and persists as litter on the forest floor. There is an order of magnitude less litter on the floor of a kelp forest compared to terrestrial forests. Another reason for the small accumulation of kelp litter is that kelps continually slufforganic material which ultimately enters the near shore food web. As kelp senesces it releases particulate and dissolved organic matter which provides a significant source of carbon for secondary consumers. Kelp Detritus : Kelp Detritus The apex of the kelp blade is the oldest part of the blade This apex continuously erodes away releasing large quantities of organic detritus as well as dissolved organic compounds. The contribute greatly to food webs of the system. Slide 23: "The numbers of living creatures of all Orders whose existence intimately depends on kelp is wonderful… I can only compare these great aquatic forests with the terrestrial ones in the inter tropical regions." Yet if in any country a forest was destroyed, I do not believe nearly so many species of animals would perish as would here from the destruction of kelp.“ Charles Darwin (1860) The Voyage of the Beagle Kelp As Nurseries : Kelp As Nurseries The moderating effect the blades of kelps have on currents and waves species use these forests as nurseries (rock lobsters, abalone, snapper and wrasse). The shading growth of delicate soft red and pink algae provide food for a range of grazing animals ( snails). The spaces between plants non-moving animals (sponges , sea squirts). The blades and stipes provide an anchoring point for small epiphytic algae which in turn can be eaten by grazing animals. Kelp Food Webs : Kelp Food Webs Kelp Vs. Herbivores : Kelp Vs. Herbivores Kelp beds vs. sea urchin barrens Many places permanently kelp or urchins Mass loss of Nova Scotia kelp beds during the 1970’s Blamed on lobster over fishing –X Urchins died in early 80’s and kelp came back Gastropods Less destructive than urchins but can cause local devastation Kelp Vs. Carnivores : Kelp Vs. Carnivores Most fish in the kelp forest are carnivores including Seahorses and Seadragons, Wrasse, and sharks. large number of invertebrates including a number of carnivorous snails such as the Tulip shell and whelks. Other invertebrates include cone shells (Conus anemone). Other molluscs found in kelp forest include the Giant cuttlefish and a number of Octopus species. Many seastars are also carnivores feeding on animals such as bivalves or encrusting filter feeders. Slide 28: Kelp Forest Food Webs Habitat Issue : Habitat Issue Slide 30: When storms rip the stalked kelp from its position on the rocks, only few will end washed up on a beach. Most will roll around in a depression of the sea bottom as tumble kelp. Because the plants are tumbled, all leaves get a little sunshine, and the whole bunch survives as a significant food source. Mechanical forces (storm) Slide 31: In healthy environments, the kelp is constantly grazed, by fish, top shells, crustaceans and more. Here we see the characteristic bite holes of the butterfish who lives mainly from kelp leaves. The strategy of biting a round hole from the middle of each leaf, by doubling it and biting a half-circle, helps to preserve the food source. A bite on the side of a leaf, would weaken it considerably Overgrazing Slide 32: kelp provides habitat for otter otters eat sea urchins sea urchins eat kelp Slide 33: Arrows indicate the timing of change in major community- changing forcing functions. Width of arrow heads indicates magnitude of the forcing function’s impact. Low driftabundance : Low driftabundance High grazing activity Low standing sock Of attached algae Low algal recruitment Sever storm Low nutrients Warm temperature Barren Area High driftabundance : High driftabundance Low grazing activity High standing sock of attached algae High algal recruitment Begining storm High nutrients Low temperature Kelp Area Surface Sea Temperatures,NE Maria Island (20m depth) 1944-1998.1.5oC rise in sea temperature oceanographic changes Large scale ecosystem changes increased abundance, since the 1960s, of the black sea urchin graze on large kelps. : Surface Sea Temperatures,NE Maria Island (20m depth) 1944-1998.1.5oC rise in sea temperature oceanographic changes Large scale ecosystem changes increased abundance, since the 1960s, of the black sea urchin graze on large kelps. Marine pollution and water quality : Marine pollution and water quality Kelp susceptible to eutrophication. Tend to deteriorate in presence of organic enrichment (sewage, fertilizers, etc.). Susceptible to deterioration in presence of suspended sediments from dredging, erosion, industrial wastes. This caused by dense plankton blooms, lasting for over six weeks, with visibility less than 4m. The next year, a similar disaster happened, and it took six years before the kelp forest had a closed canopy again. : This caused by dense plankton blooms, lasting for over six weeks, with visibility less than 4m. The next year, a similar disaster happened, and it took six years before the kelp forest had a closed canopy again. Murky water causes untimely kelp death, the ones lower down being starved of light first. This kelp forest is symptomatic of habitat degradation. Invasion species : Invasion species The arrival of other species from other countries that can grow at faster rates that native species and compete with them for space on rocky reefs. Underlie pinnatifida is a species cultivated widely in Japan and Korea for food called 'wakame'. This plant has become established on both the East Coast of Tasmania and recently spreading along the western shores of Port Phillip Bay. It is an aggressive colonizer that can replace native seaweeds and reduce the habitat available for other species. Underlie pinnatifida wakame Slide 40: Kelp Harvesting And Fisheries Modern economies are based on fishiers of kelp-associated species like lobster and rockfish. Humans also harvest kelp directly to feed aquaculture species like abalone and to extract the compound alginic acid, which is used in products like toothpaste and antacids. Slide 41:  Kelp Diseases : Kelp Diseases Occasional mass microbial mortality especially in warm summers. Fungal mortality common Especially in very old plants. Most susceptible to disease if abraded such as by ice. THANK YOU : THANK YOU

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