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COMPARISON OF GENKENSIA DEMISSA (DILLWYN) POPULATIONS IN RHODE ISLAND FRINGE MARSHES WITH VARYING NITROGEN LOADS
Chintala, M, C Wigand, AND G B. Thursby. COMPARISON OF GENKENSIA DEMISSA (DILLWYN) POPULATIONS IN RHODE ISLAND FRINGE MARSHES WITH VARYING NITROGEN LOADS. MARINE ECOLOGY PROGRESS SERIES. Inter-Research, Luhe, Germany, 320:101-108, (2006).
To examine the productivity and physiological function in the ribbed mussel, Geukensia demissa, subject to varying watershed sub-basin nitrogen loadings
Increased residential development in coastal watersheds has led to increases in anthropogenic nitrogen inputs into estuaries. Sessile bivalves are good candidate organisms to examine animal condition in nutrient-enriched areas because they contribute significantly to energy flow from pelagic to benthic systems, and thus can be considered ecological integrators of estuarine and land-derived inputs. We examined the productivity (individual and total biomass) and physiological function (as defined by condition index (CI) measurements) in the ribbed mussel, Geukensia demissa, a keystone species from ten marsh sites within Narragansett Bay, RI, subject to varying watershed sub-basin nitrogen loadings. We tested the hypotheses that G. demissa population attributes and condition are driven by watershed sub-basin nitrogen load. Geukensia demissa density and total biomass did increase significantly with the increase in nitrogen load. Individual mussel biomass appeared to be limited by mussel density, Spartina alterniflora shoot density and below ground biomass. Because S. alterniflora density and root biomass have been shown to increase with increasing nitrogen load, this suggests that responses in individual mussel size and biomass might be an indirect effect of the increased nitrogen loading. There was no clear relationship of the mussel CI with nitrogen load. Accounting for the size of the mussel in the CI analysis did not appreciably increase the precision of the analysis.
Record Details:Record Type: DOCUMENT (JOURNAL/PEER REVIEWED JOURNAL)
Organization:U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT
NATIONAL HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL EFFECTS RESEARCH LABORATORY
ATLANTIC ECOLOGY DIVISION
ECOSYSTEM ANALYSIS AND SIMULATION BRANCH