Skeletal response of Lophelia pertusa (Scleractinia) to bioeroding sponge infestation visualised with micro-computed tomography

Beuck, L., Vertino, A., Stepina, E., Karolczak, M. and Pfannkuche, Olaf (2007) Skeletal response of Lophelia pertusa (Scleractinia) to bioeroding sponge infestation visualised with micro-computed tomography Facies, 53 . pp. 157-176. DOI doi:10.​1007/​s10347-006-0094-9.

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The skeleton morphology of the azooxanthellate cold-water coral Lophelia pertusa can be strongly influenced by invasive boring sponges that infest corallites in the still living part of the colony. Atypically swollen corallites of live Lophelia pertusa from the Galway Mound (Belgica Carbonate Mound Province, Porcupine Seabight, NE Atlantic), heavily excavated by boring organisms, have been examined with a wide range of non-destructive and destructive methods: micro-computed tomography, macro- and microscopic observations of the outer coral skeleton, longitudinal and transversal thin sections and SEM analyses of coral skeleton casts. As a result, three excavating sponge species have been distinguished within the coral skeleton: Alectona millari, Spiroxya heteroclita and Aka infesta. Furthermore, four main coral/sponge growth stages have been recognised: (1) cylindrical juvenile corallite/no sponge cavities; (2) flared juvenile corallite/linear sponge cavities (if present); (3) slightly swollen adult corallites/chambered oval sponge cavities; (4) very swollen adult corallites/widespread cavities. The inferred correlation between corallite morphology and boring sponge infestation has been detected in micro-computed tomography (micro-CT) images and confirmed in sponge trace casts and peculiar features of coral skeleton microstructure.

Document Type: Article
Keywords: Bioerosion, Interaction, Ecotype, Lophelia, Boring sponges, Micro-computed tomography (micro-CT), Porcupine Seabight, RV Poseidon, POS316, RV Meteor, M61/3
Research affiliation: OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB2 Marine Biogeochemistry > FB2-MG Marine Geosystems
Refereed: Yes
DOI etc.: doi:10.​1007/​s10347-006-0094-9
ISSN: 0172-9179
Date Deposited: 18 Sep 2015 10:33
Last Modified: 05 Jan 2017 08:26

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