Relevance of crustacean carapace wettability for fouling

Becker, K., Hormchong, T. and Wahl, Martin (2000) Relevance of crustacean carapace wettability for fouling Hydrobiologia, 426 . pp. 193-201. DOI 10.1023/A:1003918512565.

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Carapace wettability and density of fouling organisms (bacteria, diatoms, protozoa, fungi, macro-organisms) were investigated for 45 crustacean species (Hoplocarida, Decapoda) from 15 families in the Gulf of Thailand. The results show that crustaceans can create and maintain characteristic carapace wettabilities. About 21 species (47 %) possess highly wettable carapaces with contact angles below 20 degrees. Contact angles between 20 degrees and 40 degrees were recorded for four species (2%), angles between 40 degrees and 60 degrees for eight species (4%) and from 60 degrees to 70 degrees for 11 (24%) species. One species, Alpheus euphrosyne (Alpheidae, Decapoda), exhibited an extremely low surface wettability (contact angle: 91 degrees). Densities of colonisers and contact angles did not correlate. Very low wettability by water (theta > 90 degrees) may only contribute little to fouling reduction in A. euphrosyne which showed the most hydrophobic carapace surface and was colonised by the lowest numbers of bacteria among all species and no other colonisers at all. We conclude that surface wettability is of little relevance for antifouling defence in crustaceans.

Document Type: Article
Keywords: crustaceans; carapace; biofouling; surface wettability
Research affiliation: Kiel University
Refereed: Yes
DOI etc.: 10.1023/A:1003918512565
ISSN: 0018-8158
Date Deposited: 18 Feb 2008 17:24
Last Modified: 23 Jan 2014 15:40

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