Broad-scale impacts of salmon farms on temperate macroalgal assemblages on rocky reefs.

abstract:

Intensive fish culture in open sea pens delivers large amounts of nutrients to coastal environments. Relative to particulate waste impacts, the ecological impacts of dissolved wastes are poorly known despite their potential to substantially affect nutrient-assimilating components of surrounding ecosystems. Broad-scale enrichment effects of salmonid farms on Tasmanian reef communities were assessed by comparing macroalgal cover at four fixed distances from active fish farm leases across 44 sites. Macroalgal assemblages differed significantly between sites immediately adjacent (100 m) to fish farms and reference sites at 5 km distance, while sites at 400 m and 1 km exhibited intermediate characteristics. Epiphyte cover varied consistently with fish farm impacts in both sheltered and exposed locations. The green algae Chaetomorpha spp. predominated near fish farms at swell-exposed sites, whereas filamentous green algae showed elevated densities near sheltered farms. Cover of canopy-forming perennial algae appeared unaffected by fish farm impacts.

Publication type

Journal Article

Author(s):

Oh, E.S., Edgar, G.J., Kirkpatrick, J.B., Stuart-Smith, R.D. & Barrett, N.S.

Year:

2015

Journal:

Marine Pollution Bulletin

volume:

98

pages:

201-209

STAY IN TOUCH

Subscribe to the RLS Newsletter to stay up to date on the latest RLS news, field activities & research.
Subscribe to Newsletter
Supported by The Ian Potter Foundation
Website Design by Forte Web Design
website design by Forte Web Design
downloadlink linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram