Presentation Title

Stage and Population Specific Lower Lethal Salinity in Acartia Tonsa Copepods

Project Collaborators

Melissa Pespeni, Lauren Ashlock, Emily Shore

Abstract

Copepods, small aquatic crustaceans, play an important role in marine food systems. Linking primary producers to larger consumers, their role in ecosystem health makes copepods a good model organism in which to investigate global change. Though typically associated with rising temperatures, global change has a wide variety of impacts. For marine ecosystems one major concern is increasing storms that lower the salinity of coastal areas. Additionally, adaptation to rising temperatures could lead to losses in plasticity, reducing the ability of copepods to respond to other stressors (such as salinity changes). This study looked at Acartia tonsa, coastal marine copepods that have a broad latitudinal distribution. The lower lethal salinity was assessed in copepods collected from three locations at different latitudes. These locations were Hurricane Island Maine, Long Island New York, and Punta Gorda Florida. Within these populations, the lower lethal salinity was assessed at major life stages: larval nauplii, juvenile copepodites, and adults. Research on the Maine species is ongoing, but analysis using ANOVA and the Tukey test revealed a marginal difference between the lower lethal salinity of the New York and Florida populations (p=0.05), a significant difference between nauplii and copepodites (p=0.03) and copepodites and adults (p

Primary Faculty Mentor Name

Melissa Pespeni

Graduate Student Mentors

Lauren Ashlock, Emily Shore

Status

Undergraduate

Student College

College of Arts and Sciences

Program/Major

Biological Science

Primary Research Category

Biological Sciences

Second College (optional)

College of Arts and Sciences

Second Program/Major

English

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Stage and Population Specific Lower Lethal Salinity in Acartia Tonsa Copepods

Copepods, small aquatic crustaceans, play an important role in marine food systems. Linking primary producers to larger consumers, their role in ecosystem health makes copepods a good model organism in which to investigate global change. Though typically associated with rising temperatures, global change has a wide variety of impacts. For marine ecosystems one major concern is increasing storms that lower the salinity of coastal areas. Additionally, adaptation to rising temperatures could lead to losses in plasticity, reducing the ability of copepods to respond to other stressors (such as salinity changes). This study looked at Acartia tonsa, coastal marine copepods that have a broad latitudinal distribution. The lower lethal salinity was assessed in copepods collected from three locations at different latitudes. These locations were Hurricane Island Maine, Long Island New York, and Punta Gorda Florida. Within these populations, the lower lethal salinity was assessed at major life stages: larval nauplii, juvenile copepodites, and adults. Research on the Maine species is ongoing, but analysis using ANOVA and the Tukey test revealed a marginal difference between the lower lethal salinity of the New York and Florida populations (p=0.05), a significant difference between nauplii and copepodites (p=0.03) and copepodites and adults (p