Seawater carbonate chemistry and calcification physiology of coralline algae


Crustose coralline algae play a crucial role in the building of reefs in the photic zones of nearshore ecosystems globally, and are highly susceptible to ocean acidification. Nevertheless, the extent to which ecologically important crustose coralline algae can gain tolerance to ocean acidification over multiple generations of exposure is unknown. We show that, while calcification of juvenile crustose coralline algae is initially highly sensitive to ocean acidification, after six generations of exposure the effects of ocean acidification disappear. A reciprocal transplant experiment conducted on the seventh generation, where half of all replicates were interchanged across treatments, confirmed that they had acquired tolerance to low pH and not simply to laboratory conditions. Neither exposure to greater pH variability, nor chemical conditions within the micro-scale calcifying fluid internally, appeared to play a role in fostering this capacity. Our results demonstrate that reef-accreting taxa can gain tolerance to ocean acidification over multiple generations of exposure, suggesting that some of these cosmopolitan species could maintain their critical ecological role in reef formation.

In order to allow full comparability with other ocean acidification data sets, the R package seacarb (Gattuso et al, 2020) was used to compute a complete and consistent set of carbonate system variables, as described by Nisumaa et al. (2010). In this dataset the original values were archived in addition with the recalculated parameters (see related PI). The date of carbonate chemistry calculation by seacarb is 2020-11-20.

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Creator Cornwall, Christopher Edward ORCID logo; Comeau, Steeve; DeCarlo, Thomas M; Larcombe, E ORCID logo; Moore, B ORCID logo; Giltrow, K; Puerzer, F ORCID logo; D'Alexis, Q; McCulloch, Malcolm T ORCID logo
Publisher PANGAEA
Contributor Yang, Yan
Publication Year 2020
Rights Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International;
OpenAccess true
Resource Type Dataset
Format text/tab-separated-values
Size 12295 data points
Discipline Earth System Research
Spatial Coverage (123.067W, -16.800S, 123.233E, -16.667N)
Temporal Coverage Begin 2016-04-01T00:00:00Z
Temporal Coverage End 2016-10-31T00:00:00Z