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Title: Phenotypic variation of Fucus ceranoides, F. spiralis and F. vesiculosus in a temperate coast (NW Portugal)
Author: Cairrão, E.
Pereira, M. J.
Morgado, F.
Nogueira, A. J. A.
Guilhermino, L.
Soares, A. M. V. M.
Keywords: Canonical Correspondence Analysis
Environmental parameters
Northwestern coast of Portugal
Issue Date: 2009
Publisher: Academia Sinica
Abstract: Brown algae includes several species of Fucus, reported both in the tidal and intertidal zones of cold and temperate regions. Environmental parameters induce wide biological variability in intertidal algae, manifested by alterations at several levels, and this has lead to the failure of some reports to discriminate between closely related taxa, particularly Fucus species. As the genus Fucus is widely represented on the Portuguese coast, the biometric parameters of three species (F spiralis, F. vesiculosus and F. ceranoides) collected from several sampling sites in Portugal, were studied over twelve months. Environmental parameters (water temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen, salinity, phosphorous - orthophosphate and total phosphate, nitrate, nitrite and ammonia) were analysed. The objective of this study was to understand how environmental parameters influence and establish morphological variation in the Fucus species. Canonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA), which helps define the relationships between morphological and physicochemical variables, was carried out for each species in order to determine which physicochemical parameter most affects the morphology of Fucus. The variable biometric that strongly separates the three Fucus species is the number of receptacles per thalli, and this parameter was highly correlated with F ceranoides. The two others species were distinguished principally by the height of the bigger receptacle, the midrib height of the holdfast, the height of the smaller receptacle, and the midrib width of the holdfast. The CCA analysis also showed that the dominant factor influencing morphometric parameters was salinity, being always in strict correlation with water temperatures and orthophosphate. For F ceranoides, physicochemical parameters (especially a higher concentration of orthophosphate and lower salinity) seem to influence morphological parameters, mainly in the raised number of receptacles per thalli. Salinity was the most important environmental parameter to distinguishing F spiralis and F vesiculosus in northern Portugal.
Peer review: yes
ISSN: 1817-406X
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