Seagrass sediments reveal the long-term deterioration of an estuarine ecosystem

Handle URI:
http://hdl.handle.net/10754/621781
Title:
Seagrass sediments reveal the long-term deterioration of an estuarine ecosystem
Authors:
Serrano, Oscar; Lavery, Paul; Masque, Pere; Inostroza, Karina; Bongiovanni, James; Duarte, Carlos M. ( 0000-0002-1213-1361 )
Abstract:
© 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd. The study of a Posidonia australis sediment archive has provided a record of ecosystem dynamics and processes over the last 600 years in Oyster Harbour (SW Australia). Ecosystem shifts are a widespread phenomenon in coastal areas, and this study identifies baseline conditions and the time-course of ecological change (cycles, trends, resilience and thresholds of ecosystem change) under environmental stress in seagrass-dominated ecosystem. The shifts in the concentrations of chemical elements, carbonates, sediments <0.125 mm and stable carbon isotope signatures (δ13C) of the organic matter were detected between 1850s and 1920s, whereas the shift detected in P concentration occurred several decades later (1960s). The first degradation phase (1850s-1950s) follows the onset of European settlement in Australia and was characterized by a strong increase in sediment accumulation rates and fine-grained particles, driven primarily by enhanced run-off due to land clearance and agriculture in the catchment. About 80% of total seagrass area at Oyster Harbour was lost during the second phase of environmental degradation (1960s until present). The sharp increase in P concentration and the increasing contribution of algae and terrestrial inputs into the sedimentary organic matter pool around 1960s provides compelling evidence of the documented eutrophication of the estuary and the subsequent loss of seagrass meadows. The results presented demonstrate the power of seagrass sedimentary archives to reconstruct the trajectories of anthropogenic pressures on estuarine ecosystem and the associated regime shifts, which can be used to improve the capacity of scientists and environmental managers to understand, predict and better manage ecological change in these ecosystems.
KAUST Department:
Red Sea Research Center (RSRC)
Citation:
Serrano O, Lavery P, Masque P, Inostroza K, Bongiovanni J, et al. (2016) Seagrass sediments reveal the long-term deterioration of an estuarine ecosystem. Global Change Biology 22: 1523–1531. Available: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/gcb.13195.
Publisher:
Wiley-Blackwell
Journal:
Global Change Biology
Issue Date:
28-Jan-2016
DOI:
10.1111/gcb.13195
Type:
Article
ISSN:
1354-1013
Sponsors:
This work was supported by the ECU Faculty Research Grant Scheme, the ECU Early Career Research Grant Scheme, and the CSIRO Flagship Marine & Coastal Carbon Biogeochemical Cluster (Coastal Carbon Cluster) with funding from the CSIRO Flagship Collaboration Fund. PM was partially funded by the Generalitat de Catalunya (MERS) (2014 SGR-1356) and through a Gledden Visiting Fellowship awarded by the Institute of Advanced Studies at The University of Western Australia. The authors are grateful to N. Marba, G. Bastyan, G. Davis, M. Rozaimi and D. Kyrwood for their help in field and/or laboratory tasks.
Appears in Collections:
Articles; Red Sea Research Center (RSRC)

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.contributor.authorSerrano, Oscaren
dc.contributor.authorLavery, Paulen
dc.contributor.authorMasque, Pereen
dc.contributor.authorInostroza, Karinaen
dc.contributor.authorBongiovanni, Jamesen
dc.contributor.authorDuarte, Carlos M.en
dc.date.accessioned2016-11-03T13:24:50Z-
dc.date.available2016-11-03T13:24:50Z-
dc.date.issued2016-01-28en
dc.identifier.citationSerrano O, Lavery P, Masque P, Inostroza K, Bongiovanni J, et al. (2016) Seagrass sediments reveal the long-term deterioration of an estuarine ecosystem. Global Change Biology 22: 1523–1531. Available: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/gcb.13195.en
dc.identifier.issn1354-1013en
dc.identifier.doi10.1111/gcb.13195en
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10754/621781-
dc.description.abstract© 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd. The study of a Posidonia australis sediment archive has provided a record of ecosystem dynamics and processes over the last 600 years in Oyster Harbour (SW Australia). Ecosystem shifts are a widespread phenomenon in coastal areas, and this study identifies baseline conditions and the time-course of ecological change (cycles, trends, resilience and thresholds of ecosystem change) under environmental stress in seagrass-dominated ecosystem. The shifts in the concentrations of chemical elements, carbonates, sediments <0.125 mm and stable carbon isotope signatures (δ13C) of the organic matter were detected between 1850s and 1920s, whereas the shift detected in P concentration occurred several decades later (1960s). The first degradation phase (1850s-1950s) follows the onset of European settlement in Australia and was characterized by a strong increase in sediment accumulation rates and fine-grained particles, driven primarily by enhanced run-off due to land clearance and agriculture in the catchment. About 80% of total seagrass area at Oyster Harbour was lost during the second phase of environmental degradation (1960s until present). The sharp increase in P concentration and the increasing contribution of algae and terrestrial inputs into the sedimentary organic matter pool around 1960s provides compelling evidence of the documented eutrophication of the estuary and the subsequent loss of seagrass meadows. The results presented demonstrate the power of seagrass sedimentary archives to reconstruct the trajectories of anthropogenic pressures on estuarine ecosystem and the associated regime shifts, which can be used to improve the capacity of scientists and environmental managers to understand, predict and better manage ecological change in these ecosystems.en
dc.description.sponsorshipThis work was supported by the ECU Faculty Research Grant Scheme, the ECU Early Career Research Grant Scheme, and the CSIRO Flagship Marine & Coastal Carbon Biogeochemical Cluster (Coastal Carbon Cluster) with funding from the CSIRO Flagship Collaboration Fund. PM was partially funded by the Generalitat de Catalunya (MERS) (2014 SGR-1356) and through a Gledden Visiting Fellowship awarded by the Institute of Advanced Studies at The University of Western Australia. The authors are grateful to N. Marba, G. Bastyan, G. Davis, M. Rozaimi and D. Kyrwood for their help in field and/or laboratory tasks.en
dc.publisherWiley-Blackwellen
dc.subjectBlue carbonen
dc.subjectCoastal ecosystemsen
dc.subjectEcosystem changeen
dc.subjectEutrophicationen
dc.subjectPalaeoecologyen
dc.subjectSeagrass archivesen
dc.titleSeagrass sediments reveal the long-term deterioration of an estuarine ecosystemen
dc.typeArticleen
dc.contributor.departmentRed Sea Research Center (RSRC)en
dc.identifier.journalGlobal Change Biologyen
dc.contributor.institutionSchool of Natural Sciences & Centre for Marine Ecosystems Research; Faculty of Health, Engineering and Science; Edith Cowan University; 270 Joondalup Drive Joondalup WA 6027 Australiaen
dc.contributor.institutionThe UWA Oceans Institute; University of Western Australia; 35 Stirling Highway Crawley WA 6009 Australiaen
dc.contributor.institutionCentro de Estudios Avanzados de Blanes; Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas; Blanes 17300 Spainen
dc.contributor.institutionOceans Institute & School of Physics; The University of Western Australia; Crawley WA 6009 Australiaen
dc.contributor.institutionDepartament de Física - Institut de Ciència i Tecnologia Ambientals; Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona; Bellaterra 08193 Spainen
dc.contributor.institutionBMT Oceanica; PO Box 462 Wembley WA 6913 Australiaen
kaust.authorDuarte, Carlos M.en
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