PHYSIOLOGICAL TRADE-OFFS AND THE LIMITS OF ACCLIMATION AND ADAPTATION OF REEF CORALS
Climate change and direct anthropogenic insults are degrading coral reefs globally at an unprecedented rate. Considering the fragility of reef corals to elevated temperatures and ocean acidification, it has been postulated that under current climatic trajectories, these ecosystems could disappear within a few decades. On the other hand, there is evidence indicating that not all coral species or individual phenotypes within a species are equally sensitive to elevated temperatures and ocean acidification, suggesting that there is a large biological substrate to accommodate successful acclimatization and/or adaptation to future climatic scenarios. In this context, it is important to determine if corals would be capable of retain reef functionality under future scenarios of climate change and ocean acidification. Reef functionality is largely dependent on the capacity of corals to deposit calcium carbonate at rates that exceed those of erosion. Here, I explore the roles played by several physiological trade-offs and constrains on the capacity of symbiotic corals to retain high calcification rates during thermal acclimation and/or adaptation. I will present several models illustrating the effects of strong selection of thermally robust holobionts on community calcification rates, as well as the effects of selecting robust symbionts on the calcification rates of individual species. I will discuss how the selection of traits that provide thermal tolerance, and therefore increasing fitness under climate change, may also compromise the ability of corals to form coral reefs.
Iglesias-Prieto, R., Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Mexico, email@example.com
Location: 313 B
Presentation is given by student: No