Effects of coal contamination on early life history processes of a reef-building coral, Acropora tenuis

Berry, Kathryn L.E., Hoogenboom, Mia O., Brinkman, Diane L., Burns, Kathryn A., and Negri, Andrew P. (2016) Effects of coal contamination on early life history processes of a reef-building coral, Acropora tenuis. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 114 (1). pp. 505-514.

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Successful reproduction and larval dispersal are important for the persistence ofmarine invertebrate populations, and these early life history processes can be sensitive to marine pollution. Coal is emerging as a contaminant of interest due to the proximity of ports and shipping lanes to coral reefs. To assess the potential hazard of this contaminant, gametes, newly developedembryos, larvae and juveniles of the coral Acropora tenuis were exposed to a range of coal leachate, suspended coal, and coal smothering treatments. Fertilisation was the most sensitive reproductive process tested. Embryo survivorship decreased with increasing suspended coal concentrations and exposure duration, effects on larval settlement varied between treatments, while effects on juvenile survivorship were minimal. Leachate exposures had negligible effects on fertilisation and larval settlement. These results indicate that coral recruitment could be affected by spills that produce plumes of suspended coal particles which interact with gametes and embryos soon after spawning.

Item ID: 49535
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1879-3363
Keywords: coal, coral reproduction, fertilisation, settlement, suspended particles, marine contamination, Great Barrier Reef
Additional Information:

This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).

Funders: James Cook University, Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS), Ecological Society of Australia, AIMS@JCU
Date Deposited: 11 Jul 2017 01:38
FoR Codes: 37 EARTH SCIENCES > 3701 Atmospheric sciences > 370104 Atmospheric composition, chemistry and processes @ 30%
41 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 4104 Environmental management > 410402 Environmental assessment and monitoring @ 30%
44 HUMAN SOCIETY > 4407 Policy and administration > 440704 Environment policy @ 40%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960506 Ecosystem Assessment and Management of Fresh, Ground and Surface Water Environments @ 100%
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