||Comparison of the Seagrass 'Thalassia testudinum' and Its Epiphytes in the Field and in Laboratory Test Systems.
Clark, J. R. ;
Macauley, J. M. ;
||Environmental Research Lab., Gulf Breeze, FL.
Sea grasses ;
Comparative evaluations ;
Field tests ;
Thalassia testudinum ;
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Thalassia testudinum and associated epiphytes from field plots were compared with plants from laboratory microcosms to determine if laboratory observations reflected responses characteristic of plants in natural systems. Changes in leaf chlorophyll and protein content and rhizome carbohydrate in Thalassia and standing crop and chlorophyll content of epiphyte communities were compared for 3 experiments conducted over 6-week intervals at different times of the growing season and for one 12-week laboratory-field comparison. Thalassia plants in the laboratory followed similar trends of field plants during the 6-week experiments but the laboratory plants differed significantly from field plants at 12 weeks. Chlorophyll content of epiphyte communities colonizing Thalassia leaves was significantly different in the laboratory compared to field samples.