Artificial marine structures facilitate the spread of a non-indigenous green alga,Codium fragilessp.tomentosoides, in the north Adriatic Sea

We investigated the distribution and dynamics of the introduced green alga, Codium fragile ssp. tomentosoides, at a variety of spatial scales on breakwaters in the north Adriatic Sea, and analysed experimentally the mechanisms underlying its establishment

FABIO BULLERI; LAURA AIROLDI

2006

Scholarcy highlights

  • Natural patterns of migration and dispersal of species are dramatically disrupted by human activities, so that the introduction of non-indigenous species into new regions, accidental or deliberate, has become a common1064 F
  • We investigated the distribution and dynamics of the introduced green alga, Codium fragile ssp. tomentosoides, at a variety of spatial scales on breakwaters in the north Adriatic Sea, and analysed experimentally the mechanisms underlying its establishment
  • We assessed the provision of sheltered habitats by breakwaters, the role of disturbance acting at different times of the year, and the interactions between Codium and the dominant native space-occupier, the mussel Mytilus galloprovincialis
  • Increased water motion and retention of space by mussels in spring–summer would be effective in reducing the ability of C. fragile ssp. tomentosoides to persist on the breakwaters investigated in this study
  • In the north Adriatic Sea, Codium is an important component of low-shore assemblages on the sheltered, landward sides of breakwaters and other human-made structures at most locations from Trieste in the north, to Monte Conero in the south, reaching peak covers at Cesenatico
  • Codium was not found on breakwaters in Porto Recanati, the southernmost location included in this study

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