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Responses to in Situ Shading by Zooxanthellae in the Scleractinian Coral Siderastrea radians

Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UFE0023874/00001

Material Information

Title: Responses to in Situ Shading by Zooxanthellae in the Scleractinian Coral Siderastrea radians
Physical Description: 1 online resource (51 p.)
Language: english
Creator: Mitchem, Emily
Publisher: University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: 2008

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords: coral, light, shade, siderastrea
Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences -- Dissertations, Academic -- UF
Genre: Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences thesis, M.S.
bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
born-digital   ( sobekcm )
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation

Notes

Abstract: Siderastrea radians colonies in the St. Martins Keys, Florida (SMK) were shaded for 10 days using artificial shading screens with targeted light reductions of 0, 25, 50, 75, and 100%. Corals were sampled and processed to yield equations for estimating surface area and number of polyps from diameters and heights. In combination with counts of zooxanthellae and analyses of chlorophyll a concentrations, these equations were used to estimate numbers of zooxanthellae per square centimeter, concentrations of chlorophyll a per square centimeter, and concentrations of chlorophyll a per zooxanthellae. On average, S. radians colonies had fewer zooxanthellae per cm and less chlorophyll a per square centimeter than has been reported for other coral species. Results suggest that zooxanthellae densities vary among plots within treatments, and the densities do not change in a consistent pattern as shading is increased. Similarly, chlorophyll a concentrations per square centimeter did not exhibit a consistent relationship with intensity of shading. In contrast, corals subjected to 50% light reduction had chlorophyll a concentrations per zooxanthellae that were 58.6% higher than concentrations in unshaded corals. However, corals subjected to 75% light reduction had only 3.6% higher concentrations than corals subjected to 50% light reduction. Thus, corals responded to shading in a 10-day period, but their response appeared to be constrained by their light compensation point, the amount of chlorophyll a that can be contained in a single zooxanthellae, or the rate at which chlorophyll a can be produced. Assuming unshaded corals represent a reliable control, S. radians gained an estimated 0.1713 pg of chlorophyll a per zooxanthellae per day on average. Siderastrea radians? zooxanthellae, though ?sun-loving?, did show some adaptation to low light environments, by increasing chlorophyll a concentrations, suggesting that colonies of these corals from SMK have the ability to adapt to reduced light environments in a relatively short amount of time. This and future studies of S. radians and its responses to the myriad effects of eutrophication will be valuable when attempting to implement sustainable management of the St. Martins Keys and true coral reefs elsewhere.
General Note: In the series University of Florida Digital Collections.
General Note: Includes vita.
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references.
Source of Description: Description based on online resource; title from PDF title page.
Source of Description: This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The University of Florida Libraries, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
Statement of Responsibility: by Emily Mitchem.
Thesis: Thesis (M.S.)--University of Florida, 2008.
Local: Adviser: Frazer, Tom K.
Electronic Access: RESTRICTED TO UF STUDENTS, STAFF, FACULTY, AND ON-CAMPUS USE UNTIL 2010-12-31

Record Information

Source Institution: UFRGP
Rights Management: Applicable rights reserved.
Classification: lcc - LD1780 2008
System ID: UFE0023874:00001

Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UFE0023874/00001

Material Information

Title: Responses to in Situ Shading by Zooxanthellae in the Scleractinian Coral Siderastrea radians
Physical Description: 1 online resource (51 p.)
Language: english
Creator: Mitchem, Emily
Publisher: University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: 2008

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords: coral, light, shade, siderastrea
Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences -- Dissertations, Academic -- UF
Genre: Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences thesis, M.S.
bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
born-digital   ( sobekcm )
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation

Notes

Abstract: Siderastrea radians colonies in the St. Martins Keys, Florida (SMK) were shaded for 10 days using artificial shading screens with targeted light reductions of 0, 25, 50, 75, and 100%. Corals were sampled and processed to yield equations for estimating surface area and number of polyps from diameters and heights. In combination with counts of zooxanthellae and analyses of chlorophyll a concentrations, these equations were used to estimate numbers of zooxanthellae per square centimeter, concentrations of chlorophyll a per square centimeter, and concentrations of chlorophyll a per zooxanthellae. On average, S. radians colonies had fewer zooxanthellae per cm and less chlorophyll a per square centimeter than has been reported for other coral species. Results suggest that zooxanthellae densities vary among plots within treatments, and the densities do not change in a consistent pattern as shading is increased. Similarly, chlorophyll a concentrations per square centimeter did not exhibit a consistent relationship with intensity of shading. In contrast, corals subjected to 50% light reduction had chlorophyll a concentrations per zooxanthellae that were 58.6% higher than concentrations in unshaded corals. However, corals subjected to 75% light reduction had only 3.6% higher concentrations than corals subjected to 50% light reduction. Thus, corals responded to shading in a 10-day period, but their response appeared to be constrained by their light compensation point, the amount of chlorophyll a that can be contained in a single zooxanthellae, or the rate at which chlorophyll a can be produced. Assuming unshaded corals represent a reliable control, S. radians gained an estimated 0.1713 pg of chlorophyll a per zooxanthellae per day on average. Siderastrea radians? zooxanthellae, though ?sun-loving?, did show some adaptation to low light environments, by increasing chlorophyll a concentrations, suggesting that colonies of these corals from SMK have the ability to adapt to reduced light environments in a relatively short amount of time. This and future studies of S. radians and its responses to the myriad effects of eutrophication will be valuable when attempting to implement sustainable management of the St. Martins Keys and true coral reefs elsewhere.
General Note: In the series University of Florida Digital Collections.
General Note: Includes vita.
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references.
Source of Description: Description based on online resource; title from PDF title page.
Source of Description: This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The University of Florida Libraries, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
Statement of Responsibility: by Emily Mitchem.
Thesis: Thesis (M.S.)--University of Florida, 2008.
Local: Adviser: Frazer, Tom K.
Electronic Access: RESTRICTED TO UF STUDENTS, STAFF, FACULTY, AND ON-CAMPUS USE UNTIL 2010-12-31

Record Information

Source Institution: UFRGP
Rights Management: Applicable rights reserved.
Classification: lcc - LD1780 2008
System ID: UFE0023874:00001


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1 RESPONSES TO in situ SHADING BY ZOOXANTHELLAE IN THE SCLERACTINIAN CORAL Siderastrea radians By EMILY LOUISE MITCHEM A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE RE QUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF SCIENCE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2008

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2 2008 Emily Louise Mitchem

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3 To my friends and family for all of their love, support, and encouragement

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4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I woul d like to thank my committee: Tom Frazer, Chuck Jacoby, and Edward Phlips. I would also like to thank the following people for assistance in the field: Robert Mitchem, Ryan Kroutil and Meredith Montgomery. Both Ryan Kroutil and Darlene Saindon were inval uable sounding boards for working through ideas and discussing the logisitics of the field experiment. Mary Cichra and Susan Badylak were very helpful with advice on counting zooxanthellae. Dr. Jacoby was very h elpful in writing this thesis, without him it m ight never have been completed. I would also like to thank my family for their love, support, encouragement, and understanding while working on this project. For all who helped me along the way whom I forgot to mention, I apologize and appreciate all of their help. This project was made possible, in part, by Special Activity License (SAL) #: 08SRP 1084.

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5 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ...............................................................................................................4 LIST OF TABLES ...........................................................................................................................6 LIST OF FIGURES .........................................................................................................................7 ABSTRACT .....................................................................................................................................8 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION ..................................................................................................................10 2 MATERIALS AND METHODS ...........................................................................................14 Study Site ................................................................................................................................14 Field Work ..............................................................................................................................15 Sample Processing ..................................................................................................................16 Data Analys is ..........................................................................................................................17 3 RESULTS ...............................................................................................................................20 General Site Characteristics ....................................................................................................20 Confirming Light Reduction Treatments ................................................................................20 Changes in Zooxanthellae Densities .......................................................................................22 Changes in Chlorophyll a Concentrations ..............................................................................22 Changes in Chlorophyll a Per Zooxanthellae .........................................................................23 4 DISCUSSION .........................................................................................................................36 Light Reduction Treatments ...................................................................................................36 Surface Area and Polyps .........................................................................................................36 Changes in Zooxanthellae Densities .......................................................................................37 Changes in Chlorophyll a Concentrations ..............................................................................39 Changes in Chlorophyll a Per Zooxanthellae .........................................................................39 Conclusions .............................................................................................................................42 LIST OF REFERENCES ...............................................................................................................47 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH .........................................................................................................51

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6 LIST OF TABLES Table page 31 Weather during the experiment. .........................................................................................24 32 Nested ANOVA testing for differences in pr oportion of light at the bottom for various locations under shading treatments. ......................................................................24 33 Nested ANOVA testing for differences in zooxanthellae densities among Siderastrea radians colonies from s hading treatments. ........................................................................30 34 One way ANOVA testing for differences in zooxanthellae densities among Siderastrea radians colonies from shading treatments. .....................................................30 35 One way ANOVA testing for differences in chlorophyll a concentrations among Siderastrea radians colonies from shading treatments. .....................................................32 36 One way ANOVA testing for differences in chlorophyll a concentrations within zooxanthellae from shaded Siderastrea radians colonies. ................................................34 41 Zooxanthellae cells cm2, g chlorophyll a cm2, and pg chlorophyll a zooxant hellae1 for various coral species. .................................................................................................46

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7 LIST OF FIGURES Figure page 23 Locations under each shading treatment (1.5 x 1.5 m plots) where light was m easured. ...........................................................................................................................19 31 Back transformed mean proportions of light penetrating under shading treatm ents with 95% confidence limits ...............................................................................................25 32 Mean irradiances measured at the bottom at two stations for Project COAST (Stations 6 and 7) and in all treatments during the experiment. ........................................26 33 Linear regression of surface area (cm2) vs. w eight of tin foil (mg) for 5 standard surface areas (1cm2, 4 cm2, 16 cm2, 36 cm2,and 64 cm2) ..................................................27 34 Linear regression of Siderastrea radians 2) vs. x 0.5Diameter(cm)]. ..............................................................................................................28 35 Linear regression of number of polyps vs. Siderastrea radians estimated surface area (cm2) ...................................................................................................................................29 36 Back transformed mean densities of zooxanthellae (cells cm2) with 95% confidence intervals for Siderastrea radians colonies from different shading treatments. .................31 37 Back transformed mean concentrations of chlorophyll a (g cm2) with 95% confidence intervals for Siderastrea radians colonies from different shading treatments ...........................................................................................................................33 38 Back transfor med mean concentrations of chlorophyll a (pg zooxanthellae1) with 95% confidence intervals for Siderastrea radians colonies from different shading treatments ...........................................................................................................................35 41 Cumulative size frequency distributions for diameters of Siderastrea radians colonies (n = 30) from different shading treatments. .........................................................45

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8 Abstract of Thesis Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science RESPONSES TO in situ SHADING BY ZOOXANTHELLAE IN THE SCLERACTINIAN CORAL Siderastrea radians By Emily Mitchem December 2008 Chair: Thomas K. Frazer Major: Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences Side rastrea radians colonies in the St. Martins Keys, Florida (SMK) were shaded for 10 days using artificial shading screens with targeted light reductions of 0, 25, 50, 75, and 100%. Corals were sampled and processed to yield equations for estimating surface area and number of polyps from diameters and heights. In combination with counts of zooxanthellae and analyses of chlorophyll a concentrations, these equations were used to estimate numbers of zooxanthellae per square centimeter concentrations of chlorophyll a per square centimeter and concentrations of chlorophyll a per zooxanthellae. On average, S. radians colonies had fewer zooxanthellae per cm and less chlorophyll a per square centimeter than has been reported for other coral species. Results suggest that zooxanthellae densities vary among plots within treatments, and the densities do not change in a consistent pattern as shading is increased. Similarly, chlorophyll a concentrations per square centimeter did not exhibit a consistent relationship wit h intensity of shading. In contrast, corals subjected to 50% light reduction had chlorophyll a concentrations per zooxanthellae that were 58.6% higher than concentrations in unshaded corals. However, corals subjected to 75% light reduction had only 3.6% higher concentrations than corals subjected to 50% light reduction. Thus, corals responded to shading in a 10day period, but their response appeared to be constrained by their light compensation point, the amount of chlorophyll

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9 a that can be contained in a single zooxanthellae, or the rate at which chlorophyll a can be produced. Assuming unshaded corals represent a reliable control, S. radians gained an estimated 0.1713 pg of chlorophyll a per zooxanthellae per day on average. Siderastrea radians zooxa nthellae, though sunloving, did show some adaptation to low light environments, by increasing chlorophyll a concentrations, suggesting that colonies of these corals from SMK have the ability to adapt to reduced light environments in a relatively short a mount of time. This and future studies of S. radians and its responses to the myriad effects of eutrophication will be valuable when attempting to implement sustainable management of the St. Martins Keys and true coral reefs elsewhere.

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10 CHAPTER 1 INTRODU CTION As human populations grow, anthropogenic activities introduce increasing quantities of sediments, nutrients, and other pollutants into coastal waters (Roberts et al. 2002, Brun et al. 2003). In particular, increased nutrient delivery caused by industrial and domestic wastewater, deforestation, and agricultural and urban runoff often can result in changes in the production characteristics of estuarine and nearshore ecosystems that, in turn, alters their structure and function (Duarte 1995, Valiela e t al. 1997). For example, eutrophication can result in a proliferation of phytoplankton, epiphytes, and drift macroalgae (Duarte 1995, Ruiz & Romero 2001, Brun et al. 2003, Lamote & Dunton 2006). One typical change in eutrophic waters is a shift from nutrient limitation to light limitation (Duarte 1995). Such a change can greatly affect sessile organisms that rely directly on photosynthesis because they cannot seek out a more suitable light environment. Nearshore corals, whether reef building or solitary, are affected by light availability because they rely on symbiotic algae known as zooxanthellae. In fact, photosynthetically active radiation (PAR; 400 700 nm) and short wavelength radiation (UVR; 290400 nm) strongly influence both the distribution and physiology of corals because these forms of energy influence zooxanthellae (HoeghGuldberg 1999). The most common zooxanthellae are dinoflagellates in the genus Symbiodinium (Rowan 1998) Symbiodinium is a genetically diverse genus that seems to comprise a ye t to be defined number of ecologically distinct types, clades or species (LaJeunesse 2001). Zooxanthellae supply their hosts with energy and essential compounds by translocating up to 95% of their photosynthetic production in the form of leaked amino acids sugars, complex carbohydrates and small peptides (HoeghGuldberg 1999). In return, the host supplies its symbionts with essential nutrients in the form of ammonia and phosphate from its

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11 waste (Hoegh Guldberg 1999). Factors that stress zooxanthellae can often impact their ability to photosynthesize and supply nutrients and other essential compounds to their Cnidarian host, which can cause deleterious changes in the host. Thus, tracking changes in zooxanthellae abundance and their chlorophyll content allows researchers and managers alike to understand and possibly predict how coral populations will react or adapt to environmental stressors. In the waters surrounding the St. Martins Keys (SMK), located near the Homosassa River, recent survey work has revealed a large population of the scleractinian coral, Siderastrea radians previously unstudied by the scientific community (Lazar 2008). This species, however, is common in Florida, the Bahamas, and the Caribbean (Amos & Amos 1997, Bak & Meesters 1999, H umann & Deloach 2002), often inhabiting flat or rocky substrates, shallow reefs, and back reefs (Humann and Deloach 2002). Like most corals, S. radians has an intimate symbiotic relationship with a type of zooxanthellae, Symbiodinium type B5a. This type is known to tolerate temperatures up to 36 oC (Warner et al. 1999) and predominate in very shallow waters where irradiance is high. Siderastrea radians generally are a stress tolerant species (see Lirman et al. 2002, Lirman et al. 2003). In the SMK, Sider astrea radians is found primarily in relatively shallow (< 3 m) waters. In this region, a longterm monitoring program (Project COAST) has documented conditions in five coastal systems since 1997 (see Jacoby et al. 2008). The Homosassa River system, which is nearest the SMK, has been exhibiting changes that indicate the potential for detrimental eutrophication, including increased nutrient concentrations, increased periphyton loads and loss of submerged aquatic vegetation (Frazer et al. 2006a, 2006b). Such effects point to reduced light availability as a key concern in this region. Thus, an improved understanding of how S. radians colonies in the SMK respond to shading will assist local managers in making sustainable

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12 decisions regarding nutrient loadings and provide insights that are likely to be applicable to other scleractinian corals. A large number of shading studies have been conducted on vegetated habitats, including seagrass meadows (see Fitzpatrick & Kirkman 1995, Ruiz & Romero 2001, Brun et al. 2003, Fokeera Wahedally & Bhikajee 2005) and kelp forests (Kennelly 1989). Fewer shading studies have been conducted on corals (but see Rogers 1979, Lirman et al. 2003), and of those, most were long term (i.e., 30 days or longer). In general, shading studies have shown that concentrations of chlorophyll a and other photosynthetic pigments within zooxanthellae, and other algal species, increase under low light intensity and decrease under high light intensity (Kirk 1994, HoeghGuldberg 1999). In this study, I experimentally manipulated the light environment of Siderastrea radians colonies in the shallow, coastal waters adjacent to the Homosassa River by installing shading screens for a period of 10 days. Though eutrophication is typically a longer, more gradual process, algal blooms are a common result (Duarte 1995). These algal blooms often last for weeks, significantly reducing available light penetrating to the bottom. Artificially shading S. radians for a short time should aid our understanding of how su ch algal blooms affect these corals, whose symbionts rely on light for photosynthesis. Although artificial shading is not equivalent to extreme turbidity or blooms of phytoplankton or macroalgae, any of these influences can lower light intensity below the relevant light compensation point and elicit similar responses in corals (Rowan 1998). Altering the amount of light penetrating to S. radians in the SMK can provide insights into how zooxanthellae react or adapt to reduced light in eutrophic environments This research will augment our understanding of the effects of eutrophication and facilitate improved management and conservation of corals in eutrophic waters.

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13 The objectives of this shading study were to quantify zooxanthellae densities, chlorophyll a concentrations per unit surface area, and concentrations of chlorophyll a per zooxanthellae in Siderastrea radians from the SMK before and after shading. The results will indicate if and how S. radians responds to reduced irradiance over a relatively shor t amount of time (10 days).

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14 CHAPTER 2 MATERIALS AND METHOD S Study Site The study was conducted in the waters surrounding the St. Martins Keys (SMK; 28o 45.5' N, 82o 37.1' W), located along the northcentral Gulf coast adjacent to Citrus County, Florida. These islands are contained within the St. Martins Marsh Aquatic Preserve and the Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge. The benthic habitat in the study area comprises a varying mixture of patchy, locally dense Thalassia testudinum, Syringodium filifor me, and Halodule wrightii on a limestone bed (Greenawalt Boswell et al. 2007). Penicillis spp., Halimeda spp., and Acetabularia spp. are common macroalgae in the area (Mitchem, pers. obs.). The coral assemblage at SMK comprises a nearly monospecific assemb lage of Siderastrea radians with a few colonies of S. siderea Corals are found in mean densities of 7 colonies m2, with maximum densities of 86 colonies m2 (Lazar 2008). The study area borders an extensive salt marsh complex associated with the Homosassa River, a springfed, coastal stream approximately 14.5 km in length (Frazer et al. 2006a, 2006b) that discharges into the Gulf of Mexico. At two fixed sites that are monitored monthly in the immediate vicinity of the study site (see Jacoby et al. 2008) water clarity in an 8 year time period was generally good, allowing, on average, 40% of incident light to penetrate to the bottom (mean depth = 0.88 m, mean light extinction coefficient (Kd PAR) = 1.05 m1, mean Secchi depth = 0.87 m). Water temperatures ranged from 9.6 oC to 33.3 oC, with a mean of 23.1 oC, and salinities ranged from 11.95 to 36.39, with a mean of 25.06. The shallow coastal waters in the area are well flushed as a consequence of a semi diurnal tidal range of ca. 1 m (Glancy et al. 2003), driving, in large part, observed variations in salinity.

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15 Field Work Eight 2.25m2 plots were established in a qualitatively homogenous section of the study area. At each plot, 1.5m x 1.5m shading screens of dark gray fiberglass (Phifer Wire Product s, Inc., Tuscaloosa, AL, USA) were set at 60 cm above the limestone bottom following methods reported by Calleja et al. (2006). Shade treatments targeted 0%, 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100% light reduction, with 0%, 50%, and 100% treatments duplicated, yielding a total of eight study plots. Shading plots were designed to cover at least 30 corals that were not within 0.25 m of the plots border. Shades remained in place for 10 days, beginning 18 June 2008. Weather permitting, water temperatures, salinities, water d epths, dissolved oxygen concentrations, pH values, and light attenuation coefficients were measured every day at noon ( 1 hour). In addition, screens were examined and fouling organisms that might affect the light field were removed. Actual light attenua tion under the screens was assessed by measuring photosynthetically active radiation (PAR, 400 700 nm) at the bottom using a LI COR sensor (model LI 192SA) and comparing this measurement with similar measures obtained with the sensor positioned above the s ubstrate in five different positions along a transect under each screen (outer left, inner left, center, inner right, and outer right; Figure 21). The outer positions were approximately 0.5 m from the center, and the inner positions were 0.25 m from the c enter. All measurements were taken at noon on clear days under calm conditions. On the 11th day (28 June 2008), 30 corals within each shading regime were harvested with a hammer and chisel. Whenever possible, only corals more than 0.25 m from the edges of the shades were collected. Harvested corals were immediately wrapped in tin foil and doublebagged in Ziploc freezer bags (Broadbent et al. 2002). These bags were placed in a styrofoam cooler with dry ice to freeze the corals as quickly as possible. Once a cooler was filled, its lid was sealed with duct tape. Additionally, on the day the plots were ass embled, 30 corals were taken

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16 from the surrounding waters to serve as a baseline for the condition of all corals at the start of the experiment. These corals, labeled ambient corals, were harvested and frozen in the same way as the shaded corals. In total, 270 corals were harvested. Sample Processing Tissue was removed from the coral skeletons using the Waterpik method (see Johannes & Wiebe 1970; Falkwoski & Dubinsky 1981; Broadbent et al. 2002; Edmunds & Gates 2002). Filtered seawater was used to prevent cytolysis of zooxanthellae (Johannes & Wiebe 1 970). The seawater and tissue mixture was collected in a beaker and sieved, sequentially, through 40m and 20m mesh sieves to remove debris and mucus. Three separate 2 ml samples were taken from the mixture and preserved in Lugols for enumeration of zooxanthellae. The remaining solution was vacuum filtered onto Whatman GF/F glass filters (nominal pore size = 0.7 m) for determination of chlorophyll a. The diameter and height of each coral skeleton also was measured. Chlorophyll samples were extracted in 90% ethanol for 2472 hours. Extracted samples were centrifuged, and chlorophyll a was measured using a spectrophotometeric technique, with acidification and correction for phaeophytin (Sartory & Grobbelaar 1984). Zooxanthellae densities were estimated by pouring each 2ml sample into a settling chamber and allowing the algal cells to settle for at least four hours. Samples in the settling chambers were examined with the aid of an inverted microscope at 400x magnification. Zooxanthellae were counted using a 250 x 250 m grid, with each square in the grid measuring 25 x 25 m. At least 100 cells were counted per sample, for a total of at least 300 cells per coral colony. A conversion factor (CF) was obtained using Equation 21. CF = 283.385 (2 1) 0.0625(Number of grids counted)(# ml settled)

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17 The CF obtained in Equation 21 was multiplied by the total number of cells counted per sample to calculate the number of zooxanthellae per ml. This value was multiplied by the total volume of the coral tissue and seawater mixture to obtain the total number of zooxanthellae per colony. Formulae for converting diameters and heights of corals to surface areas and numbers of polyps were created using the tin foil method (see Marsh 1970; Fagoonee et al. 1999; Edmunds & Gates 2002). The tin foil method required weighing 10 replicate squares for each of five surface areas (i.e., 1 cm2, 4 cm2, 16 cm2, 36 cm2, and 64 cm2). A least squares linear regression was fit to the data, including the origin, to obtai n a weight to surface area relationship. Next, tin foil was wrapped around a subsample of 88 corals, with as little wrinkling as possible, and cut around the bottom of the colony. These pieces of tin foil were weighed, and the surface areas of the colonie s were estimated using the regression equation created above. A least squares linear regression of the square roots of the estimated surface areas versus the square roots of the products of the appropriate heights and radii was forced through the origin to yield an equation for converting heights and/or diameters to surface areas. Polyps were counted on the 88 corals, and a least squares linear regression of number of polyps versus estimated surface area was forced through the origin to provide an equation for converting surface area to number of polyps. Data Analysis The relative amount of shading and its consistency under the shades was tested by converting irradiance measurements obtained during the experiment to proportion of the light available at the b ottom. Data were balanced by randomly selecting one of the two duplicate values for the 0%, 50% and 100% treatments. The resulting data were arcsin transformed. A Ryan Joiner test for normality, a Cochrans test for homoscedasticity and a nested analysis o f variance (ANOVA) were conducted on the transformed data. The ANOVA had levels of shading

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18 as a fixed factor and position under the shade as a nested factor. A Tukeys test was conducted to determine differences among levels within a significant factor. Ty pe I error rates for the ANOVA and Tukeys test were chosen according to the results of Ryan Joiner and Cochrans tests. Means and 95% confidence limits were calculated, back transformed and plotted. Chlorophyll and zooxanthellae data were transformed into g chl a cm2 (or g chl a polyp1) and cells cm2 (or cells polyp1), respectively. These standardized measures allow physiological data to be compared among corals of different types, shapes and sizes (Edmunds & Gates 2002). For all analyses, zooxanthel lae densities, chlorophyll a concentrations cm2, and concentrations of chlorophyll a zooxanthellae1 were tested for normality using a Ryan Joiner test and tested for homoscedasticity using Cochrans test. The data were transformed if necessary. A nested ANOVA was conducted using the data from the replicated 0%, 50% and 100% treatments, with plots nested within the fixed factor treatments. Based on the results from this analysis, data were either pooled (no significant variation between replicate plots) or balanced by randomly selecting one replicate for inclusion in a one way ANOVA with treatment as a fixed factor, with five levels. Tukeys tests were conducted to detect differences among levels in significant factors. Type I error rates for the ANOVAs and Tukeys tests were chosen according to the results of Ryan Joiner and Cochrans tests. Means and 95% confidence intervals were calculated, back transformed and plotted.

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19 Figure 23. Locations under each shading treatment (1.5 x 1.5 m plots) where light was measured.

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20 CHAPTER 3 RESULTS General Site Characteristics The weather during the experiment varied (Table 31). On 5 days, the weather at the site was sunny to partly sunny and calm. On the other 5 days, however, the area experienced heavier clo ud cover, severe thunderstorms and rain. On three days, rain fell at nearby locations but not at the study site, and on two days, rain was not recorded in the area. In contrast to rainfall, conditions in the nearshore waters were relatively constant throughout the experiment. Means standard deviations (SD) for water temperatures and salinities were 28.99 0.76 oC and 30.92 1.05, respectively. Mean water depth at the study site during the experiment was 1.66 0.31 m, with bottom Secchi measurements on all days. Mean dissolved oxygen concentration was 4.77 1.00 mgL1, and mean pH was 7.88 0.12 during the experiment. The mean light attenuation coefficient (Kd PAR) measured on five days during the experiment was 0.512 0.130 m1, which indicated tha t approximately 43% of incident light penetrated to the bottom. Confirming Light Reduction Treatments Arcsin transformed proportions of light penetrating under the shades were found to be nonnormal (p < 0.01) and homoscedastic (p > 0.05), suggesting that significant results should be interpreted cautiously. A nested ANOVA indicated that there were significant differences in light levels under different shading treatments (F = 315.15, df = 3, 8, p < 0.001; Table 32), but not among the outer, inner, and ce nter measurement points under each treatment (F = 0.33, df = 8, 78, p = 0.950; Table 3 2). A Tukeys test (Type I error rate = 0.001; Figure 31) indicated that significantly less light penetrated under the 100% and 75% treatment than under the 50% and

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21 25% treatments, which were not significantly different. Overall, mean proportions were within 517% of their relative target values. Light reductions under the various shading treatments also were compared with monthly light data from two Project COAST statio ns (see Jacoby et al. 2008) near the experimental area (Homosassa Stations 6 and 7). Irradiance (E m2 s1) under all treatments was less than the mean irradiance in June or any other month of the year, as calculated with data from eight years (1999 2007; Figure 32). Light reaching corals in the 0% shade treatment was similar to the mean light reaching the bottom during the months of June in the eight years. The mean diameter ( SD) of Siderastrea radians colonies was 38.6 13.8 mm, and the mean height w as 22.8 8.8 mm. The smallest diameter measured was 14.6 mm, and the largest was 80.4 mm. The smallest height measured was 4.8 mm, and the largest was 49.7 mm. The linear regression of foil surface areas to weights was significant (r2 = 0.99, n = 50, p < 0.001; Figure 33). The weight of tin foil (mg) was related to surface area (cm2) by Equation 3 1. Surface area = 230.6 (Weight of foil) (3 1) The weights of pieces of foil wrapped around 88 Siderastrea radians colonies were regressed against their e xpected surface area, obtained using Equation 31. The surface areas of S. radians colonies were similar to those of hemispheres, and a significant linear regression of square roots of estimated surface areas versus square roots of the products of the appr opriate heights and radii (r2 = 0.84, n = 88, p < 0.001; Figure 34) was converted to Equation 3 2 for calculating surface area (cm2) from height (cm) and diameter (cm). Surface area = 6.2071(Height x 0.5Diameter) (3 2) A significant linear regression (r2 = 0.92, n = 88, p < 0.001; Figure 35) related estimated number of polyps per colony to surface area (cm2) according to Equation 3 3.

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22 Number of polyps = 7.212(Surface area) (3 3) Changes in Zooxanthellae Densities Counts of zooxanthellae cm2 wer e tested for normality and homoscedasticity using a Ryan Joiner test and Cochrans test, respectively. The results from these tests indicated that the data were non normal and had unequal variances. To correct for this, zooxanthellae cells cm2 were log10transformed. After transformation, a RyanJoiner test for normality and a Cochrans test for homoscedasticity indicated that data remained nonnormal (p <0.01) and variances remained unequal (p < 0.01), which suggests cautious interpretation of significant results. A nested ANOVA indicated significant differences between duplicate plots (F = 7.17, df = 3, 173, p < 0.001; Table 33), but not among treatments (F = 0.93, df = 2, 3, p = 0.484; Table 33). Given these results, counts of zooxanthellae cm2 were b alanced by randomly selecting 30 corals from the duplicate 0%, 50%, and 100% light reduction treatments. The log10transformed data were non normal (p < 0.01) and variances were unequal (p < 0.01), so results of the ANOVA were interpreted cautiously. A one way ANOVA indicated significant differences among shading treatments (F=13.84, df = 5, 263, p < 0.001; Table 34; Figure 3 6). Results of an ANOVA using zooxanthellae cells polyp1 were the same because the ANOVA is not affected by linear scaling. A Tukeys test (Type I error rate = 0.001) indicated that fewer zooxanthellae cm2 were found in corals from the 25% light reduction treatment (Figure 36). Changes in Chlorophyll a Concentrations Due to a malfunctioning spectrophotometer, chlorophyll a samples f rom one plot of the 0% shading treatments and all of the 25% and 100% shading treatments were lost. Therefore, no nested ANOVAs were performed on chlorophyll data per unit surface area, per polyp, or per zooxanthellae. Log10transformed chlorophyll a con centrations were normal (p > 0.10) and homoscedastic (p > 0.05). A one way ANOVA indicated that concentrations of chlorophyll a

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23 cm2 differed significantly among shading treatments (F = 6.44, df = 3, 146, p < 0.001; Table 35; Figure 3 7). Results of an AN OVA using concentrations of chlorophyll a polyp1 were the same since the ANOVA is not affected by linear scaling. A Tukeys test (Type I error rate = 0.05) indicated that ambient Siderastrea radians colonies, i.e., those collected at the start of the expe riment, had less chlorophyll a per unit area or polyp than those from all other treatments, which were not significantly different. Changes in Chlorophyll a Per Zooxanthellae Chlorophyll concentrations expressed as log10transformed pg chl a zooxanthellae1 were normal (p > 0.10) and homoscedastic (p > 0.05). A one way ANOVA indicated that concentrations of chlorophyll a zooxanthellae1 were significantly different among shading treatments (F = 23.64, df = 3, 146, p < 0.001; Table 36). A Tukeys test (Type I error rate = 0.05) indicated that colonies from the 0% treatment yielded the least concentrations of chlorophyll a zooxanthellae1, with ambient colonies yielding intermediate concentrations, and 50 % and 75 % shading treatments yielding the highest concentrations, which were not significantly different (Figure 3 8). Mean chlorophyll a concentrations zooxanthellae1 increased by 58.6% between corals from the 0% and 50% treatments, but there was an increase of only 3.6% between corals from the 50% and 75% treatments.

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24 Table 3 1. Weather during the experiment. Rainfall d ata obtained from the Southwest Fl orida Water Management District (http://bkvscadasrv03.swfwmd.state.fl.us/public/) Table 3 2. Nested ANOVA testing for differences in proportion of light at the bottom for various locations under shading treatments. Light data were arcsin( Day Date Site Weather 28o 45'30" N 82o 37'6" W Daily Rainfall (mm) Ozello Station #1160 28o 51' 12" N 82 o 35 45 W Daily Rainfall (mm) Chassahowitzka Station #6113 28o 43' 18" N 82 o 33 5 W 1 18 June 2008 Stormy 100% cloud cover 1.016 6.858 2 19 June 2008 Sunny 75% cloud cover 2.032 2.794 3 20 June 2008 Sunny 0% cloud cover 0.000 0.000 4 21 June 2008 Stormy 100% cloud cover 11.176 4.318 5 22 June 2008 Stormy 100% cloud cover 10.922 6.858 6 23 Jun e 2008 Stormy 100% cloud cover 1.524 0.254 7 24 June 2008 Sunny 75% cloud cover 0.000 0.000 8 25 June 2008 Sunny 0% cloud cover 6.096 8.382 9 26 June 2008 Sunny 55% cloud cover 0.254 8.890 10 27 June 2008 Stormy 100% cloud cover 0.254 0.254 Sou rce DF SS MS F p Treatment 3 3.84548 1.28183 315.15 <0.001 Location (Treatment) 8 0.03030 0.00379 0.33 0.950 Error 78 0.88490 0.01134

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25 Figure 31. Back transformed mean proportions of light penetrating under shading treatments with 95% confidence limits. Different letters indicate significantly different means according to a Tukeys test.

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26 Figure 32. Mean irradiances measured at the bottom at two stations for Project COAST (Statio ns 6 and 7) and in all treatments during the experiment.

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27 Figure 33. Linear regression of surface area (cm2) vs. weight of tin foil (mg) for 5 standard surface areas (1cm2, 4 cm2, 16 cm2, 36 cm2,and 64 cm2). Y = Surface area (cm2) ; X = Weight of foil (mg)

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28 Figure 34. Linear regression of Siderastrea radians 2) vs. x 0.5Diameter(cm)]. Y = 2); X = x 0.5Diameter(cm)]

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29 Figure 35. Li near regression of number of polyps vs. Siderastrea radians estimated surface area (cm2). Y = Number of polyps; X = Surface area (cm2)

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30 Table 3 3. N ested ANOVA testing for differences in zooxanthellae densities among Siderastrea radians colonies from shading treatments. Cells cm2 were log10transformed. Table 3 4. O ne way ANOVA testing for differences in zoox anthellae densities among Siderastrea radians colonies from shading treatments. Cells cm2 were log10transformed. Source DF SS MS F p Treatment 2 0.74964 0.37482 0.93 0.484 Plot (Treatment) 3 1.20600 0.40200 7.17 <0.001 Error 173 9.70575 0.05610 Source DF SS MS F p Treatment 5 4.9976 0.9995 15.73 <0.001 Error 263 16.7143 0.0636

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31 Figure 36. Back transformed mean densities of zooxanthellae (cells cm2) with 95% confidence intervals for Siderastrea radians colonies from different shading treatments. Different letters indicate significantly different means according to a Tukeys test.

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32 Table 3 5. O ne way ANOVA testing for d ifferences in chlorophyll a concentrations among Siderastrea radians colonies from shading treatments. Concentrations (g chlorophyll a cm2) were log10transformed Source DF SS MS F p Treatment 3 0.7201 0.2400 6.44 <0.001 Error 146 5.4434 0.0373

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33 Figure 37. Back transformed mean concentrations of chlorophyll a (g cm2) with 95% confidence intervals for Siderastrea radians colonies from different shading treatments. Different letters indicate significantly different means according to a Tuke ys test.

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34 Table 3 6. O ne way ANOVA testing for differences in chlorophyll a concentrations within zooxanthellae from shaded Siderastrea radians colonies. Concentrations (pg chlorophyll a zooxanthellae1) were log10transformed. Source DF SS MS F p Treatment 3 1.0746 0.3582 23.63 <0.001 Error 146 2.2136 0.0152

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35 Figure 38. Back transformed mean concentrations of chlorophyll a (pg zooxanthellae1) with 95% confidence intervals for Siderastrea radians colonies from different s hading treatments. Different letters indicate significantly different means according to a Tukeys test.

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36 CHAPTER 4 DISCUSSION Light Reduction Treatments ANOVA results indicated that light reduction treatments performed in the expected rank order (25% < 50% < 75% < 100%). Actual light reduction under shading treatments, however, differed from the target values. The 25% shading treatment was closer to 40% light reduction, making this treatment statistically equal to the light reduction in the 5 0% shading treatments, which achieved an actual mean of 50% light reduction. The 75% shading treatment reduced the available light by 83% on average. Therefore, the 75% light reduction treatment was statistically equal to the 100% light reduction treatme nt, which reduced light penetrating under the screen by 97%. Results also indicate that light was reduced consistently underneath each shading treatment, so corals harvested closer to the edge of the plots experienced the same light regime as corals harve sted from the center of each plot. Irradiance (E m2 s1) penetrating under all shading treatments was less than the mean irradiance penetrating to the bottom in any month for eight years (1999 2007). On sunny days, light reaching corals in the 0% shad ing treatment was similar to light reaching the bottom during June for the same eight years. It is unclear how eventdriven light reduction, such as the storms during the experiment, affected the irradiance penetrating to the bottom. Surface Area and Poly ps Results of a regression using height and diameter of Siderastrea radians colonies suggest these parameters can be used to predict the surface area of colonies with high accuracy. The results of the linear regression indicated that S. radians surface ar ea was an accurate predictor of the number of polyps colony1. Surface area estimations suggest that S. radians in the SMK are roughly hemispherical. Thus, by simply measuring the diameter of these colonies, surface areas,

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37 numbers of polyps per colony and heights (see Lazar 2008) can be estimated. These results could allow researchers to estimate a variety of parameters from diameters measured in the field without having to harvest colonies. Additionally, linear scaling meant that analyzing data expressed in terms of surface area was equivalent to analyzing data expressed in terms of polyps. Changes in Zooxanthellae Densities Results suggest that zooxanthellae densities vary spatially, i.e. between plots within treatments. Therefore, data from replicate treatments were not pooled. The results of a balanced ANOVA indicate that increased shading did not yield consistent changes in densities of zooxanthellae. Only colonies from the 25% treatment had significantly lower densities. This result could be due to experimental factors, such as the 25% treatment being closer to 40% shading than 25% (Figure 31) or a variety of untested natural factors. One post hoc hypothesis was that S. radians in 25% light reduction treatments were consistently smaller or lar ger than colonies in other treatments. Cumulative size frequency distributions based on diameters of corals from each shading treatment were similar, except ambient corals were larger (Figure 4 1). Thus, size was not likely to be a cause of the differences in the corals from the 25% shading treatment. The lack of change in zooxanthellae densities among shaded Siderastrea radians from SMK is not unexpected. In one study, Falkowski and Dubinsky (1981) collected Stylophora pistillata from the Gulf of Eilat a nd transplanted colonies from high to low light environments. Stylophora pistillata zooxanthellae densities did not change with exposure to reduced light conditions. Producing more cells is thought to be more energy intensive than increasing the amount of photosynthetic pigments per cell. In fact, it is common for unicellular algae to increase the concentration of their photosynthetic pigments under reduced light conditions rather than investing energy in cell division (Kirk 1994)

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38 Zooxanthellae densiti es in Siderastrea radians from the SMK were lower than reported for other coral species (Table 4 1). It has been suggested, however, that there is considerable variation in density within a coral colony throughout the year (0.5 x 106 to 5 x 106 cm2), with fluctuations over three orders of magnitude among coral colonies (Fagoonee et al. 1999). For example, Fagoonee et al. (1999) also found that zooxanthellae densities in Acropora formosa were lower in the spring and summer months, possibly due to the high levels of irradiance in the summer and spring, compared to the lower light levels in fall and winter. Although at the SMK, there is less light penetration in the summers, the days are longer. Corals may be responding to a longer duration of light in the summer, rather than increased light intensity. Therefore, S. radians taken from the SMK in June may be expected to have lower zooxanthellae densities than colonies collected in the winter. Additionally, there is evidence of a regulatory mechanism governing zooxanthellae densities, because zooxanthellae densities have been shown to depend on densities measured in the previous week (Fagoonee et al. 1999). This relationship suggests that the zooxanthellae may take longer than a week to adjust their numbers in response to environmental variations and stressors. Further research, in the form of longterm monitoring and shading studies, would help clarify the questions related to lowered zooxanthellae densities in Siderastrea radians from SMK. Two types of studies should be conducted. First, a longterm monitoring of S. radians in the SMK could elucidate natural cycles in zooxanthellae densities over months, seasons, and even years to determine if densities vary through time. The second study, a longterm shading project, could further investigate if the nonsignificant difference in densities between the 0% and 100% shading treatments might continue as a trend and result in an adaptation, given enough time. A longterm shading study would prolong stress, which would give S. radians more time

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39 to alter their zooxanthellae densities. For example, the difference between the zooxanthellae densities in corals from the 100% and 0% shading treatments would translate into an increase of 7400 zooxanthellae d1 if u nshaded corals acted as a reliable control. Changes in Chlorophyll a Concentrations Siderastrea radians colonies from SMK not exposed to shading had lower concentrations of chlorophyll a than four species of Porites, Stylophora pistillata, and three species of Montastraea (Table 4 1). Thus, S. radians colonies in the SMK may have lower chlorophyll a concentrations under normal conditions than some other species of coral. This is not unexpected for algae, both unicellular and multicellular, living in high light environments (Kirk 1994). In fact, the type of zooxanthellae found in Siderastrea radians Symbidinium type B is known as a sun specialist and predominates in corals living in very shallow water (Rowan 1998). Ambient corals that were taken before the experiment started (Day 0) had lower chlorophyll a concentrations than corals from 0% shade treatments harvested at the end of the experiment (Day 11). This suggests that something unrelated to the shading experiment may have altered light in the SMK between Day 0 and Day 11, such as the large amount of rain the area received during the experiment. Chlorophyll a concentrations from 50% and 75% shading treatments were not significantly different from the 0% treatment. These results combined with the results for zooxanthellae density suggest that chlorophyll a concentrations zooxanthellae1 may be the key to understanding how S. radians in SMK adapt to reduced light availability. Changes in Chlorophyll a Per Zooxanthellae Results indicate that concentrations of chlorophyll a per zooxanthellae were lowest in Siderastrea radians colonies in the 0 % shading treatment, with ambient (Day 0) colonies having slightly higher concentrations. Colonies from the 50% and 75% shading treatments exhibited the

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40 highest concentrations, which were statistically equal. From the 0% to the 50% light reduction treatment, chlorophyll a concentrations per cell increased 58.6%, but from 50% to 75% light reduction, there was an increase of only 3.6%. These results are not unexpe cted. Many species of algae increase the amount of photosynthetic pigments they contain when exposed to reduced light intensity. Some species of algae are even known to increase their pigment concentrations two to five fold (Kirk 1994). Algal species t hat are successful in low light environments can increase their pigment concentrations in one of two ways. They can either increase the number of photosynthetic units per cell or increase the size of existing photosynthetic units (Richardson et al. 1983). For example, in most green plants, including algae, it appears that the increase in chlorophyll content during shade adaptation is largely due to an increase in the number of photosynthetic units, rather than their size (Kirk 1994). Shade adaptation in z ooxanthellae, however, is seemingly due to an increase in the size of photosynthetic units, rather than the number of photosynthetic units per cell (Falkowski & Dubinsky 1981, Kirk 1994). In fact, Richardson et al. (1983) argued that increasing the size of the photosynthetic unit was more energetically efficient. As a consequence of increasing the size of photosynthetic units in cells, shade adapted algae have higher photosynthetic rates per unit biomass than their high light adapted counterparts (Falkows ki & Dubinsky 1981, Kirk 1994). It is unclear which tactic S. radians in SMK used to increase their chlorophyll a concentrations per cell, but it is reasonable to conclude that they probably increased the size of their photosynthetic units, as this is typically how zooxanthellae respond to reduced irradiance. The 58.6% increase in chlorophyll a per zooxanthellae in Siderastrea radians subjected to 50% shading, relative to unshaded corals, combined with the 3.6% increase in chlorophyll a per zooxanthellae between corals subjected to 75% shading and those subjected to 50%, suggests

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41 that zooxanthellae may be reaching the point at which they can no longer increase the chlorophyll a concentrations in their cells and maintain basic metabolism. Exactly when zooxanthellae reach the compensation point where photosynthesis cannot keep up with respiration is not clear and not every species or type of Symbiodinium necessarily has the same compensation point. For example, Rogers (1979) shaded 10 species of coral for 5 weeks. During that time, Acropora cervicornis was the first to respond to shading stress, bleaching after only 3 weeks. At the end of 5 weeks, Diploria labyrinthiformis and Montastrea annularis were pale, but not white, indicating a negative stress resp onse, but no coral death. The other 7 species of coral shaded during the 5 weeks had some pale areas, but remained fairly healthy. Of these healthy species, one was Acropora agaricites indicating that even corals in the same genus can have very differen t stress responses. Siderastrea siderea a close relative of S. radians recovered from shading stress better than all other species in the experiment (Rogers 1979). This result may be related to the fact that S. sidera colonies harbor Symbiodinium type C1 (LaJeunesse 2001), a known shade adapted type (Rowan 1998). As the zooxanthellae in S. radians are notoriously sunloving (Rowan 1998), they may have a lower light compensation point. However, because the zooxanthellae in the experiment were subjec ted to a high level of shading relatively quickly, they may not have had enough time to adjust their light compensation point. In addition, the capacity for zooxanthellae to accumulate pigments must be finite. Zooxanthellae are typically small, 5 10 m in diameter, and type B zooxanthellae, those found in Siderastrea radians are among the smallest (LaJeunesse 2001). Because the rate of increase in chlorophyll a per cell was less from 50% to 75% light reduction, the maximum chlorophyll a

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42 per zooxanthellae for S. radians could be around 4.3 pg chlorophyll a, which was the mean concentration across the two treatments. Lastly, Siderastrea radians zooxanthellae are evolutionarily adapted to high levels of irradiance, and they might not change chlorophyll a co ncentrations quickly. Both 50% and 75% light reduction treatments were of the same duration 10 days. If the experiment had been continued for another 10 days, the chlorophyll a concentrations per zooxanthellae for corals in the 50% light reduction trea tment may have stayed constant and the concentrations for corals in the 75% treatment may have increased. Assuming 0% shading treatments acted as a reliable control, S. radians zooxanthellae had an estimated gain of 0.1713 pg chlorophyll a day1, which i s faster than the rate reported for Styphora pistillata (0.1567 pg chloropyll a day1; Falkowski & Dubinsky 1981). Thus, S. radians may be increasing their chlorophyll a per zooxanthellae at their maximum rate, and colonies subjected to light reductions greater than 50% may require longer than 10 days to adapt completely. Conclusions A longterm shading and monitoring approach, as previously described, could help answer questions as to how zooxanthellae respond and adapt to reduced irradiance. Longterm m onitoring and shading studies could utilize underwater fluorometers (i.e. DIVING PAM; HoeghGuldberg & Jones 1999; Winters et al. 2003; Hoogenboom et al. 2006) to detect changes in photosynthetic capacity, in situ and these measurements could be converted to chlorophyll concentrations using a calibration curve developed by sampling some colonies. The required surface areas, numbers of polyps, and heights, could be estimated from simple diameter measurements that could be taken in the field, without harve sting colonies. Such studies would provide insights into the light compensation point for corals.

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43 Despite the unanswered questions remaining at the end of this study, insights were gained into how Siderastrea radians in the SMK adapt to shading stress. Importantly, S. radians zooxanthellae, though sunloving, did respond to lowered light conditions, by increasing chlorophyll a concentrations zooxanthellae1. This suggests that S. radians along with being unusually tolerant of high and low temperature s (Macintyre 2003) and burial (Rice & Hunter 1992, Lirman et al. 2002, Lirman et al. 2003), has the ability to adapt to reduced light environments in a relatively short amount of time (~10 days). Eutrophication is usually a gradual process, occurring step wise over time. The short term response of S. radians zooxanthellae to reduced irradiance suggests that these corals can respond quickly enough to cope with the gradual reduction in light availability caused by eutrophication. Along with being gradual, r eductions in light availability as a result of eutrophication are typically long lasting, often reducing irradiance for all attached photosynthetic organisms over months or years. Whether the zooxanthellae in Siderastrea radians can continue to adapt and cope with longterm shading is unclear. Further research, including a long term shading study of S. radians in SMK is needed to elucidate their responses. Increased shading is not the only effect that eutrophication has on coastal environments. Eutrophi cation also causes major changes in submerged vegetation, including increased growth of algae that can overgrow corals (Duarte 1995, Valiela et al. 1997). Another relevant consequence of eutrophication are changes in benthic biogeochemical processes (Duar te 1995, Nixon 1995). By definition, eutrophication causes an increase in organic matter (Nixon 1995), which often results in increased remineralization of organic matter in the sediments and reduced oxygen concentrations in bottom waters. Hypoxic and of ten anoxic conditions can, in turn, decrease survivorship of benthic organisms (Duarte 1995). In addition, in eutrophic waters,

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44 seagrasses are often lost, which can promote resuspension of sediments (Duarte 1995) and harm corals by further reducing light, burying colonies, or preventing coral larvae from settling and surviving. The consequences of eutrophication are diverse and more research is needed to fully understand how corals, including S. radians from the St. Martins Keys, will adapt or cope with s uch environmental changes.

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45 Figure 41. Cumulative size frequency distributions for diameters of Siderastrea radians colonies (n = 30) from different shading treatments.

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46 Table 4 1. Zooxanthellae cells cm2, g chlorophyll a cm2, and pg chlorophyll a zooxanthel lae1 for various coral species. Values represent means standard deviations or ranges. A dash () indicates no data reported. Species Depth (m) 10 6 cells cm2 g chl a cm2 pg chl a cell1 Reference Siderastrea radians (Ambient) 2 0.3 0.1 1.1 0.6 3.4 1.0 This Study Siderastrea radians (0 % Shade) 2 0.5 0.3 1.5 0.7 2.8 1.0 This Study Stylophora pistillata 1.6 0.3 3.6 1.1 2.2 0.3 Falkowski and Dubinsky 1981 Porites lobata 0 2 1. 5 6.9 9.3 47.5 4.5 16.7 Apprill et al. 2007 Porites lutea 0 2 2.3 5.6 17.3 29.3 4.4 9.8 Apprill et al. 2007 Porites astreoides 4 5 4.7 2.0 2.2 0.4 Myers et al. 1999 Porites porites 4 5 4.2 2.3 3.7 1.8 Myers et al. 1999 Acropora cervicornis 4 5 0.9 0.8 0.9 0.6 Myers et al. 1999 Agaricia tenuifolia 4 5 1.2 0.8 1.6 1.0 Myers et al. 1999 Favia fragum 4 5 0.9 0.2 0.5 0.5 Myers et al. 1999 Montastraea annularis 4 5 3.6 0.8 1.1 0.5 Myers et al. 1999 Montastraea cavernosa 4 5 5.4 2.0 2.4 1.2 Myers et al. 1999 Montastraea faveolata 10 5.4 0.1 Lesser et al. 2000 Montastraea cavernosa 10 6.8 0.4 Lesser et al. 2000

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47 LIST OF REFERENCES Amos WT, Amos SH (1997) Lesser Starlet Coral. In: Atlantic and Gulf Coasts. Chanticleer Press, New York. 472 pp Apprill AM, Bidigare RR, Gates RD (2007) Visibly healthy corals exhibit variable pigment concentrations and symbiont phenotypes. Coral Reefs 26:387397 Bak RPM, Meesters EH (1999) Population structure as a response of coral communities to global chan ge. Amer Zoo 39:5665 Broadbent AD, Jones GB, Jones RJ (2002) DMSP in corals and benthic algae from the Great Barrier Reef. Est Coast Shelf Sci 55:547 555 Brun FG, Vergara JJ, Navarro G, Hernandez I, PerezLlorens JL (2003) Effect of shading by Ulva rigida canopies on growth and carbon balance of the seagrass Zostera noltii Mar Ecol Prog Ser 265:8596 Calleja ML, Barrn C, Hale JA, Frazer TK, Duarte CM (2006) Light regulation of benthic sulfate reduction rates mediated by seagrass ( Thalassia testudinum ) m etabolism. Est and Coast 29:12551264 Duarte CM (1995) Submerged aquatic vegetation in relation to different nutrient regimes. Ophelia 41:87112 Edmunds PJ, Gates RD (2002) Normalizing physiological data for scleractinian corals. Coral Reefs 21:193197 Fag oonee I, Wilson HB, Hassell MP, Turner JR (1999) The dynamics of zooxanthellae populations: a longterm study in the field. Science 283:843845 Falkowski PG, Dubinsky Z (1981) Light shade adaptation of Stylophora pistillata, a hermatypic coral from the Gul f of Eilat. Nature 289:172174 Fitzpatrick J, Kirkman H (1995) Effects of prolonged shading stress on growth and survival of seagrass Posidonia australis in Jervis Bay, New South Wales, Australia. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 127:279 289 Fokeera Wahedally SBM, Bhikaj ee M (2005) The effects of in situ shading on the growth of a seagrass, Syringodium isoetifolium Est Coast Shelf Sci 64:149135 Frazer TK, Notestein SK, Keller SR, Jacoby CA (2006a) Water quality characteristics of the nearshore Gulf coast waters adjacent to Citrus, Hernando and Levy Counties: Project COAST 1997 2005. Final Report. Southwest Florida Water Management District, Brooksville, Florida. 119 pp

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48 Frazer TK, Notestein SK, Pine WE (2006b) Changes in the physical, chemical and vegetative characteristics of the Homosassa, Chassahowitzka and Weeki Wachee rivers. Final Report. Southwest Florida Water Management District, Brooksville, Florida. 163 pp Glancy TP, Frazer TK, Cichra CE, Lindberg WJ (2003) Comparative patterns of occupancy by decapods crusta ceans in seagrass, oyster, and marsh edge habitats in a northeast Gulf of Mexico estuary. Estuaries 26:12911301 Greenawalt Boswell J, Frazer TK, Jacoby CA, Arnold WS (2007) Mortality and exploitation rate estimates for the recreational bay scallop fishery off the Gulf Coast of Florida, USA. N Am J Fish Manage 24:12301242 HoeghGuldberg O (1999) Climate change, coral bleaching and the future of the worlds coral reefs. Mar and Fresh Res 50:839 866 HoeghGuldberg O, Jones RJ (1999) Photoinhibition and photoprotection in symbiotic dinoflagellates from reef building corals. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 183:7386 Hoogenboom MO, Anthony KRN, Connolly SR (2006) Energetic cost of photoinhibition in corals. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 313:112 Humann P, Deloach N (2002) Reef Coral Iden tification: Florida, Caribbean, Bahamas. New World Publications, Inc: Jacksonville, Florida. 278 pp Jacoby CA, Frazer TK, Saindon DD, Keller SR, Behringer DC Jr (2008) Water quality characteristics of the nearshore Gulf coasts waters adjacent to Citrus, Hernando and Levy Counties: Project COAST 19972007. Annual Report. Southwest Florida Water Management District, Brooksville, Florida. 62 pp Johannes RE, Wiebe WJ (1970) Method for determination of coral tissue biomass and composition. Limnol and Oceanogr 15:822824 Kennelly SJ (1989) Effects of kelp canopies on understorey species due to shade and scour. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 50:215224 Kirk JTO (1994) Light & photosynthesis in aquatic ecosystems. 2nd ed. Cambridge University Press, New York. 509 pp LaJeunesse T C (2001) Diversity and community structure of symbiotic dinoflagellates from Caribbean coral reefs. Mar Biol 141:387400 Lamote M, Dunton KH (2006) Effects of drift Macroalgae and light attenuation on chlorophyll fluorescence and sediment sulfides in the seagrass Thalassia testudinum J Exp Mar Biol Ecol 334:174186 Lazar KE (2008) Reproductive demography of the scleractinian coral Siderastrea radians in the St. Martins Keys, Florida: Spatial patterns in abundance, size, and reproductive characteristics. MS thesis, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida. 85 pp

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49 Lesser MP, Mazel C, Phinney D, Yentsch CS (2000) Light absorption and utilization by colonies of the congeneric hermatypic corals Montastraea faveolata and Montastraea cavernosa. Limnol Oceanogr 45:76 86 Lirman D, Manzello D, Macia S (2002) Back from the dead: the resilience of Siderastrea radians to severe stress. Coral Reefs 21:291 292 Lirman, D, Orlando B, Macia S, Manzello D, Kaufman L, Biber P, Jones T (2003) Coral communities of Biscayne Bay, Florida and adjacent offshore areas: diversity, abundance, distribution, and environmental correlates. Aquat Conserv 13:121135 Macintyre IG (2003) A classic marginal coral environment: tropical coral patches off North Carolina, USA. Coral Reefs 22:474 Marsh JAJ (1970) Primary productivity of reef building calcareous red algae. Ecology 51:255263 Myers MR, Hardy JT, Mazel CH, Dustan P (1999) Optical spectra and pigmentation of Caribbean reef corals and macroalgae. Coral Reefs 18:179 186 Nixon SW (1995) Coa stal marine eutrophication a definition, social causes, and future concerns. Ophelia 41:199219 Rice SA, Hunter CL (1992) Effects of suspended sediment and burial on scleractinian corals from west central Florida patch reefs. Bull Mar Sci 51:429 442 Rich ardson K, Beardall J, Raven JA (1983) Adaptation of unicellular algae to irradiance: an analysis of strategies. New Phytol 93:157191 Roberts CM, McClean CJ, Veron JEN, Hawkins JP, Allen GR, McAllister DE, Mittermeier CG, Schueler FW, Spalding M, Wells F, Vynne C, Werner TB (2002) Marine biodiversity hotspots and conservation priorities for tropical reefs. Science 295:12801284 Rogers CS (1979) The effect of shading on coral reef structure and function. J Exp Mar Biol Ecol 41:269 288 Rowan R (1998) Diversit y and ecology of zooxanthellae on coral reefs. J Phycol 34:407417 Ruiz JM, Romero J (2001) Effects of in situ experimental shading on the Mediterranean seagrass Posidonia oceanica. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 251:107 120 Sartory DP, Grobbelaar JU (1984) Extraction of chlorophyll a from freshwater phytoplankton for spectrophotometric analysis. Hydrobiologia 114: 177187 Valiela IJ, McClelland I, Hauxwell J, Behr PJ, Hersh D, Foreman K (1997) Macroalgal blooms in shallow estuaries: Controls and ecophysiological and ecosystem consequences. Limnol Oceanogr 42:11051118

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50 Warner ME, Fitt WK, Schmidt GW (1999) Damage to photosystem II in symbiotic dinoflagellates: A determinant of coral bleaching. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 96:80078012 Winters G, Loya Y, Rttgers R, Beer S (2003) Photoinhibition in shallow water colonies of the coral Stylophora pistillata as measured in situ. Limnol Oceanogr 48:1388 1393

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51 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Emily L. Mitchem was born in 1984 in Atlanta, Georgia. She lived in Naples, Florida until 1998, when she moved to Rincon, Georgia, a suburb of Savannah, Georgia, with her parents. Emily ran cross country in high school and was often outside running. She attended school in Georgia until she graduated in May 2002 from South Effingham High School, and le ft that same summer to attend the University of Florida. At first, Emily wanted to be a doctor and majored in m icrobiology. She soon learned that being a doctor involved being around numerous sick people and changed her major to z oology, with plans of be coming a marine biologist. Emily took Doc Maturos marine biology class during summer 2001 under Dr. Patrick Baker and realized she had made the right choice in not becoming a doctor. W ith Dr. Shirley Baker under the University Scholars Program Emily completed an undergraduate thesis titled, Native Florida Crustacean Predators Preferences Regarding the Non Indigenous Green Mussel, Perna viridis. In f all 2005, Emily received her Bachelor of Science in z oology (s umma c um l aude ) Immediately, Emily be gan working in Dr. Thomas Frazers lab doing lab and field work, with the anticipation of starting her m asters degree in the f all. After two anda half years of working with Dr. Thomas Frazer, Emily receive d the Master of Science degree from the Univers ity of Florida Fisheries and Aquat ic Sciences Program in December 2008. After graduation, Emily pla ns to teach high school biology.