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Abstract Detail

Physiology & Ecophysiology

Thorhaug, Anitra [1], Poulos, Helen Mills [2], Schwarz, Arthur [3], Berlyn, Graeme [4].

The physiological pollutant effects on tropical/subtropical seagrass of diminution of light through turbidity, of temperature, of salinity.

The important effects of anthropogenic changes in environmental conditions has diminished global seagrass by 30% with yearly loss at 7% y-1. Engineers creating infrastructure altering normal environmental conditions of estuaries’ , bays’ or open shorelines’ superimpose their structure without knowledge of ecosystem responses to the effluents they create have caused large global diminution especially in the fragile tropics. Temperature additions from power plants, desalination facilities, occurred ubiquitously through the tropics although the upper thermal limit is 31-32oC for most benthic seagrasses, close to summer natural maxima. Salinity alterations to seagrasses occur from both riverine diversion, (lowering of salinity fluctuations), or damming including causeways and/or ponding which increase of salinity, creating seagrass change.Each seagrass species has individual upper and lower salinity limits. Estuarine or open shoreline light alteration due to river turbidity impingement, removal of stabilizing seagrass cover so that sediment resuspension occurs, or turbid effluents diminishes tropical/subtropical seagrasses both within the effluent isopleths, and at their deeper edge. Generally, the seagrass diminish greatly at the deeper edge, an extent difficulty captured from most mapping methods. The detailed field studies for temperature, salinity, light including laboratory tolerance studies defining physiological limits of dominant Atlantic species will be discussed. The solutions lie in tailoring effluents and infrastructure modifying normal watershed flow to respect seagrass limits for their services of essential fish habitat, high carbon sequestration, bottom and shoreline stabilization and endangered species habitat and restoration. Major species in western tropical/subtropical Atlantic include Thalassia testudinum, Halodule wrightii, Syringodium filiforme, and Halophila engelmanii.

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1 - 1359 SW 22ND TER #1, Miami, FL, 33145, USA
2 - WEseleyan University , Planetary and Environmental Science, Middletown, CT
3 - Southwestern Adventist UNiversity , Biology , Keene, TX
4 - Yale University, School Of Foresty & Evironmental Studies, GREELEY LAB-370 PROSPECT ST, NEW HAVEN, CT, 06511, USA

Seagrass Temperature limits
Seagrass salinity limits
Seagrass light limits
Seagrass power plants
Tropical Atlantic Seagrass light limits
 Thalassia testudinum
Halodule wrightii.

Presentation Type: Oral Paper
Session: 23, Physiology & Ecophysiology
Location: Fort Worth Ballroom 6/Omni Hotel
Date: Tuesday, June 27th, 2017
Time: 11:15 AM
Number: 23010
Abstract ID:361
Candidate for Awards:None

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