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Sample records for lions mediterranean sea

  1. Sea Lion Diet Data

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — California sea lions pup and breed at four of the nine Channel Islands in southern California. Since 1981, SWFSC MMTD has been conducting a diet study of sea lions...

  2. Sea surface temperature variability in the North Western Mediterranean Sea (Gulf of Lion) during the Common Era

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sicre, Marie-Alexandrine; Jalali, Bassem; Martrat, Belen; Schmidt, Sabine; Bassetti, Maria-Angela; Kallel, Nejib

    2016-12-01

    This study investigates the multidecadal-scale variability of sea surface temperatures (SSTs) in the convection region of the Gulf of Lion (NW Mediterranean Sea) over the full past 2000 yr (Common Era) using alkenone biomarkers. Our data show colder SSTs by 1.7 °C over most of the first millennium (200-800 AD) and by 1.3 °C during the Little Ice Age (LIA; 1400-1850 AD) than the 20th century mean (17.9 °C). Although on average warmer, those of the Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA) (1000-1200 AD) were lower by 1 °C. We found a mean SST warming of 2 °C/100 yr over the last century in close agreement with the 0.22 and 0.26 °C/decade values calculated for the western Mediterranean Sea from in situ and satellite data, respectively. Our results also reveal strongly fluctuating SSTs characterized by cold extremes followed by abrupt warming during the LIA. We suggest that the coldest decades of the LIA were likely caused by prevailing negative EA states and associated anticyclone blocking over the North Atlantic resulting in cold continental northeasterly winds to blow over Western Europe and the Mediterranean region.

  3. Holocene climate variability in the North-Western Mediterranean Sea (Gulf of Lions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. Jalali

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Sea surface temperatures (SSTs and land-derived input time series were generated from the Gulf of Lions inner-shelf sediments (NW Mediterranean Sea using alkenones and high-molecular-weight odd-carbon numbered n-alkanes (TERR-alkanes, respectively. The SST record depicts three main phases: a warm Early Holocene (∼ 18 ± 0.4 °C followed by a cooling of ∼ 3 °C (from 7000 to 1000 BP and rapid warming from ∼ 1850 AD onwards. Several superimposed multi-decadal cooling events of ∼ 1 °C amplitude were also identified. TERR-alkanes were also quantified to identify periods of high river discharge in relation with flood events of the Rhone River and precipitations. Their concentrations show a broad increase from the early Holocene towards present with a pronounced minimum around 2500 BP and large fluctuations during the second part of the Holocene. Comparison with Holocene flood activity reconstructions across the Alps region suggests that sediments of the inner shelf originate mainly from the Upper Rhone River catchment basin and that they are primarily delivered during positive NAO.

  4. Controls, budgets and variability of riverine sediment fluxes to the Gulf of Lions (NW Mediterranean Sea)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sadaoui, Mahrez; Ludwig, Wolfgang; Bourrin, François; Raimbault, Patrick

    2016-09-01

    The present study investigates the spatio-temporal variability of riverine sediment fluxes to the Gulf of Lions, one of the most extensive shelf regions in the Mediterranean Sea. Small coastal rivers compete here with the Rhone River, nowadays the largest Mediterranean river in terms of water discharge. Our scientific objectives were to investigate the major controls of riverine sediment yields (SY) in this area and to quantify the role of the small coastal rivers, largely ignored in previous studies, in the total sediment budgets. Another objective concerned the source identification of the Rhone sediments with regard to the major tributary contributions, and to test whether the sediment fluxes are in equilibrium in the basin. For the calculation of representative long-term fluxes, we used a Simplified Rating Curve Approach (SiRCA) which could be validated by high resolution monitoring and existing literature data. An overall of 13 drainage basins could be distinguished, covering about 86% of the study area (6 coastal rivers, the Rhone River, and 6 of its tributaries). Representative SY range from 19 to 151 t km-2 yr-1 in the investigated drainage basins. Despite their smaller basin areas and more torrential discharge regimes, SY of the coastal rivers were generally lower compared to SY of the Rhone River and its tributaries. Confrontation with the lithological, morphological and hydroclimatic basin characteristics indicate that lithology exerts the dominant control on SY in the study region. In particular, the existence of erodible sedimentary rocks in the headwater regions yields high SY. Peak values of 135 and 151 t km-2 yr-1 were observed for the Isere and Durance tributaries of the Rhone River, where badlands exist. The coastal rivers contribute on average only to slightly more than 5% of the long-term sediment inputs to the Gulf of Lions. During individual years however, their contribution can strongly increase (up to 27% in 2011). Their contribution is

  5. Drilling below the salt in the Western Mediterranean Sea : the GOLD-1 (Gulf of Lion Drilling) Project.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rabineau, Marina; Aslanian, Daniel; Gorini, Christian; Alain, Karine; Participants, International

    2010-05-01

    In recent years the Gulf of Lion within the Occidental Mediterranean Sea has become a unique natural laboratory for the study both the evolution and interaction of deep processes (geodynamics, tectonics, subsidence, isostasy) and surficial processes (river behavior, sedimentary fluxes, sea-level changes, climatic impacts). Here, representing a large group of international researchers, we present the main objectives for a deep drilling project at the foot of the continental slope (2400 m water depth) in the Gulf of Lion. This position is the only place in the Gulf of Lion where the sedimentary column is expected to be complete without major erosional hiatuses or time gaps. It is located sufficiently far from the shelf and slope to not have been affected by the extraordinarly erosional event of the Messinian, and at the same time be free from salt-related faulting and diapirism. At this position we have recorded nearly a complete high-resolution history of the last 23 through 30 Ma of Mediterranean history in some 7.7 km of sedimentary archive. From the petroleum exploration perspective the deepest part of the margin reamain underexplored since all existing wells were drilled on the shelf and slope GLP1 & 2 being the deepest one. New interpretations in the region (especially concerning the Messinian event) have considerably changed earlier views of potential hydrocarbon reservoirs. New results expected from deep drilling are numerous: 1) For the substratum: the upper continental crust thins to less than 5 km, and changes laterally to a relatively thin crust with high velocities whose precise nature is still undetermined (Gailler et al., 2009). The aim of the drilling is to reach this crucial information which is essential for the understanding of the evolution of the sedimentary basin (Aslanian et al., 2009). 2) The drilling will allow the dating and characterization of the impact of the initiation and changes in glacioeustatic cyclicity in alpine glaciers and

  6. Role of deep convection on anthropogenic CO2 sequestration in the Gulf of Lions (northwestern Mediterranean Sea)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Touratier, F.; Goyet, C.; Houpert, L.; de Madron, X. Durrieu; Lefèvre, D.; Stabholz, M.; Guglielmi, V.

    2016-07-01

    The most active deep convection area in the western Mediterranean Sea is located in the Gulf of Lions. Recent studies in this area provides some insights on the complexity of the physical dynamics of convective regions, but very little is known about their impacts on the biogeochemical properties. The CASCADE (CAscading, Surge, Convection, Advection and Downwelling Events) cruise, planed in winter 2011, give us the opportunity to compare vertical profiles of properties sampled either during stratified conditions or after/during a convection event. In the present study, we focus on the distributions of the carbonate system properties (mainly total alkalinity, AT; and total dissolved inorganic carbon, CT) because, in the context of the climate change, deep convection areas are suspected to significantly increase the sequestration of anthropogenic CO2 (CANT). Given its limited size, the impact of the Mediterranean Sea on the global carbon budget is probably minor but this marginal sea can be used as a laboratory to better understand carbon sequestration and its transfer to the basin interior by deep convection processes. Distributions of AT and CT, both measured from bottle samples, and that of CANT (estimated with the TrOCA approach) are first analyzed in the light of other key properties (salinity, temperature, and dissolved oxygen). An objective interpolation procedure is then applied to estimate CT and AT from CTD measured properties. With this procedure, the vertical resolution goes from a maximum of 32 samples per station to one property estimate every meter (more detailed distributions are obtained). Results provide arguments to conclude that CANT is rapidly transferred to the deepest layer due to deep convection events. During deep convection events, the increase of CANT in the water column is positively correlated to that of potential density and oxygen content. The challenge of quantifying the amount of sequestered carbon is however not resolved due to the

  7. A 500 kyr record of global sea-level oscillations in the Gulf of Lion, Mediterranean Sea: new insights into MIS 3 sea-level variability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Frigola

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Borehole PRGL1-4 drilled in the upper slope of the Gulf of Lion provides an exceptional record to investigate the impact of late Pleistocene orbitally-driven glacio-eustatic sea-level oscillations on the sedimentary outbuilding of a river fed continental margin. High-resolution grain-size and geochemical records supported by oxygen isotope chronostratigraphy allow reinterpreting the last 500 ka upper slope seismostratigraphy of the Gulf of Lion. Five main sequences, stacked during the sea-level lowering phases of the last five glacial-interglacial 100-kyr cycles, form the upper stratigraphic outbuilding of the continental margin. The high sensitivity of the grain-size record down the borehole to sea-level oscillations can be explained by the great width of the Gulf of Lion continental shelf. Sea level driven changes in accommodation space over the shelf cyclically modified the depositional mode of the entire margin. PRGL1-4 data also illustrate the imprint of sea-level oscillations at millennial time-scale, as shown for Marine Isotopic Stage 3, and provide unambiguous evidence of relative high sea-levels at the onset of each Dansgaard-Oeschger Greenland warm interstadial. The PRGL1-4 grain-size record represents the first evidence for a one-to-one coupling of millennial time-scale sea-level oscillations associated with each Dansgaard-Oeschger cycle.

  8. A 500 kyr record of global sea level oscillations in the Gulf of Lion, Mediterranean Sea: new insights into MIS 3 sea level variability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Frigola

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Borehole PRGL1-4 drilled in the upper slope of the Gulf of Lion provides an exceptional record to investigate the impact of Late Pleistocene orbitally-driven glacio-eustatic sea level oscillations on the sedimentary outbuilding of a river fed continental margin. High-resolution grain-size and geochemical records supported by oxygen isotope chronostratigraphy allow reinterpreting the last 500 ka upper slope seismostratigraphy of the Gulf of Lion which consists of five main sequences stacked during the sea level lowering phases of the last five glacial-interglacial 100-kyr cycles. The high sensitivity to sea level oscillations of the grain-size record along the borehole, favoured by the large width of the Gulf of Lion continental shelf, demonstrates that sea level driven changes in accommodation space over the shelf are able to cyclically modify the depositional mode of the entire margin. PRGL1-4 data also illustrate the imprint of sea level oscillations at millennial scale, as shown for Marine Isotopic Stage 3, and provide unambiguous evidence of relative high sea levels at the onset of each Dansgaard-Oeschger Greenland warm interstadial. The PRGL1-4 grain-size record represents the first evidence ever for a one-to-one coupling of millennial-scale sea level oscillations associated with each Dansgaard-Oeschger cycle.

  9. The open sea as the main source of methylmercury in the water column of the Gulf of Lions (Northwestern Mediterranean margin)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cossa, Daniel; Durrieu de Madron, Xavier; Schäfer, Jörg; Lanceleur, Laurent; Guédron, Stéphane; Buscail, Roselyne; Thomas, Bastien; Castelle, Sabine; Naudin, Jean-Jacques

    2017-02-01

    Despite the ecologic and economical importance of coastal areas, the neurotoxic bioaccumulable monomethylmercury (MMHg) fluxes within the ocean margins and exchanges with the open sea remain unassessed. The aim of this paper is to address the questions of the abundance, distribution, production and exchanges of methylated mercury species (MeHgT), including MMHg and dimethylmercury (DMHg), in the waters, atmosphere and sediments of the Northwestern Mediterranean margin including the Rhône River delta, the continental shelf and its slope (Gulf of Lions) and the adjacent open sea (North Gyre). Concentrations of MeHgT ranged from waters, whereas, within the shelf waters, MeHgT/HgT proportions were the lowest (1-3%). We calculate that the open sea is the major source of MeHgT for the shelf waters, with an annual flux estimated at 0.68 ± 0.12 kmol a-1 (i.e., equivalent to 12% of the HgT flux). This MeHgT influx is more than 80 times the direct atmospheric deposition or the in situ net production, more than 40 times the estimated "maximum potential" annual efflux from shelf sediment, and more than 7 times that of the continental sources. In the open sea, ratios of MMHg/DMHg in waters were always water column, where MeHg concentrations are maximum. This observation supports the idea that MMHg could be a degradation product of DMHg produced from inorganic divalent Hg.

  10. Small-scale variability in the coupling/uncoupling of bacteria, phytoplankton and organic carbon fluxes along the continental margin of the Gulf of Lions, Northwestern Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Wambeke, F.; Heussner, S.; Diaz, F.; Raimbault, P.; Conan, P.

    2002-06-01

    A High Frequency Flux (HFF) experiment was conducted during spring 1997 on the continental slope of the Gulf of Lions (Northwestern Mediterranean Sea) with the aim of examining the dynamical and biological processes controlling particle transfer in this margin environment. Within this general framework, a special attention was paid to short temporal and small spatial variations of phytoplankton and bacterial production through six hydrological and biological surveys performed during a 7-week period at nine sampling stations located on a 10×20-mile grid. Downward fluxes of particulate organic carbon at each station were measured by traps deployed at 240 m depth. The f-ratio and the ratio of integrated bacterial to primary production (IBP/IPP ratio), computed as indexes of biological export for each survey and station, did not provide a clear, unambiguous understanding of the importance of biological processes in the cycling of carbon in the upper water column. However, the data collected allowed to draw up carbon budgets for the different phases of the experiment. The comparison of primary production with measured and estimated organic carbon removal terms (sinking, cycling through the microbial food web, grazing by ciliates and metazoans) showed that a balance was never reached between fluxes of production and removal of organic carbon during the course of the experiment. The system shifted from an initial situation of 'missing' carbon (removal>production) to one of 'excess' carbon (removalimportant factor affecting the budget.

  11. Alaska Steller Sea Lion Pup Count Database

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This database contains counts of Steller sea lion pups on rookeries in Alaska made between 1961 and 2015. Pup counts are conducted in late June-July. Pups are...

  12. Alaska Steller Sea Lion Food Habits Data

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set contains food habits samples, usually scats, collected opportunistically on Steller sea lion rookeries and haulouts in Alaska from 1985 to present....

  13. Suspended sediment transport in the Gulf of Lions (NW Mediterranean): Impact of extreme storms and floods

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ulses, C.; Estournel, C.; Durrieu de Madron, X.; Palanques, A.

    2008-01-01

    In situ observations were combined with 3D modeling to gain understanding of and to quantify the suspended sediment transport in the Gulf of Lions (NW Mediterranean Sea). The outputs of a hydrodynamic–sediment transport coupled model were compared to near-bottom current and suspended sediment

  14. Composition and provenance of terrigenous organic matter transported along submarine canyons in the Gulf of Lion (NW Mediterranean Sea)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pasqual, Catalina; Goñi, Miguel A.; Tesi, Tommaso; Sanchez-Vidal, Anna; Calafat, Antoni; Canals, Miquel

    2013-11-01

    Previous projects in the Gulf of Lion have investigated the path of terrigenous material in the Rhone deltaic system, the continental shelf and the nearby canyon heads. This study focuses on the slope region of the Gulf of Lion to further describe particulate exchanges with ocean’s interior through submarine canyons and atmospheric inputs. Nine sediment traps were deployed from the heads to the mouths of Lacaze-Duthiers and Cap de Creus submarine canyons and on the southern open slope from October 2005 to October 2006. Sediment trap samples were analyzed by CuO oxidation to investigate spatial and temporal variability in the yields and compositional characteristics of terrigenous biomarkers such as lignin-derived phenols and cutin acids. Sediment trap data show that the Dense Shelf Water Cascading event that took place in the months of winter 2006 (January, February and March) had a profound impact on particle fluxes in both canyons. This event was responsible for the majority of lignin phenol (55.4%) and cutin acid (42.8%) inputs to submarine canyons, with lignin compositions similar to those measured along the mid- and outer-continental shelf, which is consistent with the resuspension and lateral transfer of unconsolidated shelf sediment to the canyons. The highest lithogenic-normalized lignin derived phenols contents in sediment trap samples were found during late spring and summer at all stations (i.e., 193.46 μg VP g-1 lithogenic at deep slope station), when river flow, wave energy and total particle fluxes were relatively low. During this period, lignin compositions were characterized by elevated cinnamyl to vanillyl phenol ratios (>3) at almost all stations, high p-coumaric to ferulic acid ratios (>3) and high yields of cutin acids relative to vanillyl phenols (>1), all trends that are consistent with high pollen inputs. Our results suggest marked differences in the sources and transport processes responsible for terrigenous material export along

  15. Welfare of sea lions in travelling circuses

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hopster, H.; Jong, de I.C.

    2014-01-01

    Dit rapport geeft een overzicht van de wetenschappelijke literatuur en opinies van deskundigen over het welzijn van zeeleeuwen in reizende circussen. Dit als basis voor beleidsontwikkeling.This report describes the scientific literature and expert views concerning the welfare of sea lions in travell

  16. Organochloride pesticides in California sea lions revisited

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tanabe Shinsuke

    2002-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs are ubiquitous environmental contaminants that have been banned in most countries, but considerable amounts continue to cycle the ecosphere. Top trophic level predators, like sea birds and marine mammals, bioaccumulate these lipophilic compounds, reflecting their presence in the environment. Results We measured concentrations of tDDT (p,p' - DDT + p,p' - DDD + p,p' - DDE and PCBs in the blubber of dead California sea lions stranded along the California coast. tDDT and PCB concentrations were 150 ± 257 ug/g lipid weight (mean ± SD and 44 ± 78 ug/g lipid weight, respectively. There were no differences in tDDT or PCB concentrations between animal categories varying in sex or age. There was a trend towards a decrease in tDDT and PCB concentrations from northern to southern California. The lipid content of the blubber was negatively correlated with levels of tDDT and PCBs. tDDT concentrations were approximately 3 times higher than PCB concentrations. Conclusions tDDT levels in the blubber of California sea lions decreased by over one order of magnitude from 1970 to 2000. PCB level changes over time were unclear owing to a paucity of data and analytical differences over the years. Current levels of these pollutants in California sea lions are among the highest among marine mammals and exceed those reported to cause immunotoxicity or endocrine disruption.

  17. Mediterranean, our sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Markaki, Foteini

    2017-04-01

    My school (1o EPAL Ymittos -Athens, Greece) is a technical school of secondary education and throughout this school year being drafted a program of environmental education. The main theme is the Mediterranean Sea, the biggest closed sea extending between three continents. Topics studied: 1. Biodiversity and the risks threat. 2. The geophysics that characterize (earthquakes, volcanoes explosions, etc). 3. The Mediterranean Sea as environment anthropogenesis, a mosaic of other cultures and even place current notions of social phenomena (refugees). Pedagogical Objectives: Cognitive/Enviromental: 1. To investigate and understand the biodiversity of the Mediterranean Sea and the risks to threaten and phenomena that characterize. 2. To understand the position of the Mediterranean Sea in the land and the role of the historical, cultural and social human environment. 3. To come in contact with texts literary, social, articles on the Mediterranean. Psychomotor: 1. To work together and collect information for the Mediterranean Sea. 2. Experiential approach to the natural environment. 3. Develop critical thinking. 4. Undertake responsibilities for the presentation of the program. Emotional: 1. To feel joy from participation in the program. 2. Being sensitized and configure attitudes and actions of respect towards the environment. Methodology implementation: Teamwork. Interdisciplinary - holistic to dissemination of program recordings to courses curriculum. Study in the field. Gathering information from newspapers, magazines, internet, maps, and photographs. Experiential method- Project. Assessment methods and self-assessment. Fields of courses: Greek language- History- Biology- Chemistry- Technology Dissemination of results: Make a page of social media (facebook), a blog, enhancing environmental awareness via video, make an electronic poster.

  18. Structural geometry in the eastern Pyrenees and western Gulf of Lion (Western Mediterranean)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mauffret, Alain; Durand de Grossouvre, Bernard; Tadeu Dos Reis, Antonio; Gorini, Christian; Nercessian, Alex

    2001-11-01

    We present new seismic data from the Gulf of Lion located east of the Pyrenees on the continental shelf of the Mediterranean Sea. The deep penetration LISA (Ligurian-Sardinia Sea) seismic lines, the shots of the LISA cruise recorded on land, and the high definition ELF seismic sections allow us to present a complete picture of the tectonics in this area from the surface to the Moho level, and also to document late Miocene-early Pliocene extensional tectonics in the area. Previous studies show a prominent thinning of the crust observed from the Pyrenees towards the Gulf of Lion. The Moho depth varies from 48 km beneath the Axial Range crust (thickened during the Pyrenean Eocene Orogeny) to 21 km below the Catalan Basin in the Gulf of Lion. This crustal thinning occurred mainly during the early Miocene extension of the Mediterranean Sea. Balanced reconstructed geological sections derived from reflection and refraction seismic data allow us to evaluate the stretching factors at the crustal level. A maximum extension of 25 km is computed for the Catalan Basin area. This extension is related to detachments that penetrate the crust as deep as 11 km to the base of the brittle crust. These intra basement detachments have been confused in the past with the Paleozoic acoustic basement. The detachments show a clear listric shape and the geometry of horst and grabens can be explained by a hanging wall and footwall configuration with isostatic rebound of the footwall. The uplift in the Eastern Pyrenees (Albères and Canigou Massifs), on the other hand, is related to the late Miocene-early Pliocene extension we mapped in the area. These elevated features, probably formed by isostatic rebound, are surrounded by deep basins such as the Roussillon and El Empordà depressions. A 1.7 km uplift during the late Miocene-early Pliocene is computed in the offshore part of the Albères Massif. The cause of this Late Miocene-early Pliocene extension is not well explained although an uplift

  19. Alaska Steller sea lion Count Database (Non-pups)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This database contains counts of adult and juvenile (non-pup) Steller sea lions on rookeries and haulouts in Alaska made between 1904 and 2015. Non-pup counts have...

  20. Lions

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Casey Malarcher; 文涛

    2005-01-01

    Lions have been called the kings of the anim al world.These anim als can be found wild in Africa and India.Lions in A frica can go withoutwaterforup to one m onth,so they have no trouble during dry tim es. W ithout question,lions are also one of the m ost popularanim als to see in zoos.A lm ostevery zoo around the world has a few lions. It is very easy for people to tell m ale and fem ale lions apart.Lions are the only kind ofcatthatshow this strong difference between m ales and fem ales.A m ale lion has a ...

  1. In vitro susceptibility of sea lion poxvirus to cidofovir.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nollens, Hendrik H; Gulland, Frances M D; Jacobson, Elliott R; Hernandez, Jorge A; Klein, Paul A; Walsh, Michael T; Condit, Richard C

    2008-10-01

    Parapoxviruses of seals and sea lions are commonly encountered pathogens with zoonotic potential. The antiviral activity of the antiviral compounds isatin-beta-thiosemicarbazone, rifampicin, acyclovir, cidofovir and phosphonoacetic acid against a parapoxvirus (SLPV-1) isolated from a Californian sea lions (Zalophus californianus) was evaluated. Cidofovir was able to reduce virus-induced cytopathic effect of SLPV-1 in confluent monolayers when used in concentrations greater than 2microg/ml. A decreasing virus yield was observed in the presence of increasing concentrations of cidofovir, which confirmed the ability of cidofovir to inhibit SLPV-1 replication. The in vitro efficacy of cidofovir against SLPV-1 indicates the therapeutic potential of cidofovir for the treatment of infections of humans and pinnipeds with parapoxviruses of seals and sea lions. This study confirms the previously proposed therapeutic potential of cidofovir for the treatment of parapoxvirus infections.

  2. Electrophysiological Techniques for Sea Lion Population-Level Audiometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-09-30

    Audiometry James J. Finneran Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center Pacific, Biosciences Division, Code 71510, 53560 Hull Street, San Diego, CA...DATES COVERED 00-00-2009 to 00-00-2009 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Electrophysiological Techniques For Sea Lion Population-Level Audiometry 5a

  3. Diagnostic testing for Leptospirosis in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leptospirosis is a relatively common bacterial disease in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus); however, there remain gaps in our understanding of maintenance hosts relative to animals demonstrating clinical disease. To effectively study the epidemiology of leptospirosis in any species, a s...

  4. Relative quantity judgments in South American sea lions (Otaria flavescens).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abramson, José Z; Hernández-Lloreda, Victoria; Call, Josep; Colmenares, Fernando

    2011-09-01

    There is accumulating evidence that a variety of species possess quantitative abilities although their cognitive substrate is still unclear. This study is the first to investigate whether sea lions (Otaria flavescens), in the absence of training, are able to assess and select the larger of two sets of quantities. In Experiment 1, the two sets of quantities were presented simultaneously as whole sets, that is, the subjects could compare them directly. In Experiment 2, the two sets of quantities were presented item-by-item, and the totality of items was never visually available at the time of choice. For each type of presentation, we analysed the effect of the ratio between quantities, the difference between quantities and the total number of items presented. The results showed that (1) sea lions can make relative quantity judgments successfully and (2) there is a predominant influence of the ratio between quantities on the subjects' performance. The latter supports the idea that an analogue representational mechanism is responsible for sea lions' relative quantities judgments. These findings are consistent with previous reports of relative quantities judgments in other species such as monkeys and apes and suggest that sea lions might share a similar mechanism to compare and represent quantities.

  5. Identification and Validation of Plasma Biomarkers in California Sea Lions

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-04-24

    of domoic acid in bodily fluids (urine, feces, milk , aqueous humor) provided additional DAT confirmation in some cases. Acute DAT cases were...Ancillary Studies: compare cerebral spinal fluid proteins by tandem mass spectrometry between acute DAT, chronic DAT, and non-DAT sea lions. Compare serum...using western blotting. 5. Ancillary Studies: compare cerebral spinal fluid proteins by tandem mass spectrometry between acute DAT, chronic DAT, and

  6. Anembryonic Gestation in Wild South American Sea Lion, Otaria flavescens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grandi, M F; Crespo, E A; Dans, S L

    2016-10-01

    We present the first record and description of an anembryonic gestation in a wild South America sea lion, Otaria flavescens (Carnivora, Pinniped). This is the first report of an anembryonic gestation in a wild marine mammal species. This description furthers the knowledge of general aspects of the reproduction of an otariid species, which presents the particularities of delayed implantation and polygynic breeding system, and adds information on a reproductive abnormality in marine mammals.

  7. Gastric carcinoma in a South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens)

    OpenAIRE

    YAMAZAKI, Mutsumi; KOUTAKA, Mitsuru; Une, Yumi

    2016-01-01

    A 22-year-old captive male South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens) developed an undifferentiated carcinoma originating in the cardiac region of the stomach. Clinical symptoms included vomiting, anorexia and weight loss. Ultrasonography and endoscopy showed gastric wall thickness. At necropsy, the gastric wall had significant thickening around the cardiac region, and metastases were found in some organs. Histologically, samples from the stomach wall and metastases showed the same tumor tis...

  8. Alaska Steller Sea Lion Habitat Model Satellite Telemetry and Environmental Data, 2000-2012

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The at-sea habitat use of Steller sea lions was modeled from location and dive behavior data obtained from the deployment of satellite-linked telemetry tags on sea...

  9. 75 FR 81921 - Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Steller Sea Lion Protection Measures for the...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-12-29

    ... published in the Federal Register on December 13, 2010 (75 FR 77535), to implement Steller sea lion... corrections revise coordinates for Steller sea lion sites, revise footnotes, add degree symbols, add lines... Economic Zone Off Alaska; Steller Sea Lion Protection Measures for the Bering Sea and Aleutian...

  10. 50 CFR Figure 20 to Part 679 - Steller sea lion conservation area (SCA) of the Bering Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Steller sea lion conservation area (SCA) of the Bering Sea 20 Figure 20 to Part 679 Wildlife and Fisheries FISHERY CONSERVATION AND MANAGEMENT... EXCLUSIVE ECONOMIC ZONE OFF ALASKA Pt. 679, Fig. 20 Figure 20 to Part 679—Steller sea lion conservation...

  11. 75 FR 77535 - Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Steller Sea Lion Protection Measures for the...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-12-13

    ... environmental baseline; Steller sea lions population trends, foraging behavior, and biology; and effects of the... foraging behavior of Steller sea lions in the Aleutian Islands subarea. The details of these standards are... final rule for the Steller sea lion protection measures (68 FR 204, January 2, 2003). Because the...

  12. Campylobacter insulaenigrae: first isolation report from South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens, (Shaw, 1800

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mario González

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Campylobacter insulaenigrae have been isolated from different pinnipeds but not from South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens. The aim of this work is to report the first isolation of C. insulaenigrae from South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens. The isolate, identified by its phenotypic and molecular characteristics, allow recognizing O. flavescens as a new host for C. insulaenigrae.

  13. Campylobacter Insulaenigrae: First Isolation Report from South American sea lion (Otaria Flavescens, (Shaw, 1800).

    Science.gov (United States)

    González, Mario; Paz Villanueva, Maria; Debruyne, Lies; Vandamme, Peter; Fernández, Heriberto

    2011-01-01

    Campylobacter insulaenigrae have been isolated from different pinnipeds but not from South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens).The aim of this work is to report the first isolation of C. insulaenigrae from South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens).The isolate, identified by its phenotypic and molecular characteristics, allow recognizing O. flavescens as a new host for C. insulaenigrae.

  14. Campylobacter insulaenigrae: first isolation report from South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens, (Shaw, 1800)

    OpenAIRE

    Mario González; Maria Paz Villanueva; Lies Debruyne; Peter Vandamme; Heriberto Fernández

    2011-01-01

    Campylobacter insulaenigrae have been isolated from different pinnipeds but not from South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens). The aim of this work is to report the first isolation of C. insulaenigrae from South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens). The isolate, identified by its phenotypic and molecular characteristics, allow recognizing O. flavescens as a new host for C. insulaenigrae.

  15. Taxonomy Icon Data: California sea lion [Taxonomy Icon

    Lifescience Database Archive (English)

    Full Text Available California sea lion Zalophus californianus Chordata/Vertebrata/Mammalia/Theria/Euth...eria/Carnivora Zalophus_californianus_L.png Zalophus_californianus_NL.png Zalophus_californianus_S.png Zalophus_california...nus_NS.png http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Zalophus+californianus&t=L http://...biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Zalophus+californianus&t=NL http://bios...ciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Zalophus+californianus&t=S http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Zalophus+californianus&t=NS ...

  16. High-frequency hearing in seals and sea lions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cunningham, Kane A; Reichmuth, Colleen

    2016-01-01

    Existing evidence suggests that some pinnipeds (seals, sea lions, and walruses) can detect underwater sound at frequencies well above the traditional high-frequency hearing limits for their species. This phenomenon, however, is not well studied: Sensitivity patterns at frequencies beyond traditional high-frequency limits are poorly resolved, and the nature of the auditory mechanism mediating hearing at these frequencies is unknown. In the first portion of this study, auditory sensitivity patterns in the 50-180 kHz range were measured for one California sea lion (Zalophus californianus), one harbor seal (Phoca vitulina), and one spotted seal (Phoca largha). Results show the presence of two distinct slope-regions at the high-frequency ends of the audiograms of all three subjects. The first region is characterized by a rapid decrease in sensitivity with increasing frequency-i.e. a steep slope-followed by a region of much less rapid sensitivity decrease-i.e. a shallower slope. In the second portion of this study, a masking experiment was conducted to investigate how the basilar membrane of a harbor seal subject responded to acoustic energy from a narrowband masking noise centered at 140 kHz. The measured masking pattern suggests that the initial, rapid decrease in sensitivity on the high-frequency end of the subject's audiogram is not due to cochlear constraints, as has been previously hypothesized, but rather to constraints on the conductive mechanism. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. The hydrodynamics and kinematics of sea lion swimming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leftwich, Megan C.; Friedman, Chen

    2014-11-01

    A highly interactive, non-research, female sea lion was used for studying its thrust production mechanisms at the Smithsonian National Zoo in Washington, DC. Videography was used for flipper kinematics extraction by tracing the flipper center line and studying the flipper shape throughout the thrust phase. Acceleration from rest was studied with respect to flipper angular rate and flipper shape by digitizing the videos using 10 points spanning root to tip. Resulting functions reveal spanwise camber of up to 32%, with instantaneous angular rates as high as 20 rad/sec, generating thrust values in the range of 150-680 N. The sea lion flipper was scanned using several 3D scanning techniques to generate a 3D model which will be used to reproduce a scaled robotic flipper for testing in a controlled laboratory setting. Techniques included two highly accurate structured light based 3D scanner, an image based software, capable of generating 3D meshes, and a kinect based scanner. A silicone mold of the flipper was also created for reference and comparison. The 3D models are used to extract several section airfoils which aid in both modeling the flipper computationally and designing foreflipper based robotic platforms.

  18. Spatial patterns and scaling behaviors of Steller sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus) distributions and their environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lander, Michelle E; Logsdon, Miles L; Loughlin, Thomas R; Van Blaricom, Glenn R

    2011-04-01

    Fractal geometry and other multi-scale analyses have become popular tools for investigating spatial patterns of animal distributions in heterogeneous environments. In theory, changes in patterns of animal distributions with changes in scale reflect transitions between the controlling influences of one environmental factor or process over another. In an effort to find linkages between Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus) and their environment, the objective of this study was to determine if the spatial distribution of Steller sea lions at sea displayed similar scaling properties to the variation of two environmental features, including bathymetry and sea surface temperature (SST). Additionally, distributions of Steller sea lion point patterns were examined with respect to measurements of bathymetric complexity. From February 2000 to May 2004, satellite transmitters were deployed on 10 groups of juvenile Steller sea lions (n=52) at eight different locations within the Aleutian Islands and Gulf of Alaska. Indices of fractal dimension were calculated for each group of sea lions using a unit square box-counting method, whereas indices of bathymetry and SST patchiness were derived by conducting a variance ratio analysis over the same scales. Distributions of Steller sea lions at sea displayed self-similar fractal patterns, suggesting that individuals were distributed in a continuous hierarchical set of clumps within clumps across scales, and foraging behavior was likely influenced by a scale invariant mechanism. Patterns of bathymetric variability also were self-similar, whereas patterns of SST variability were scale dependent and failed to retain self-similar spatial structure at larger scales. These results indicate that the distributions of Steller sea lions at sea were more influenced by bathymetry than SST at the scales examined, but scale-dependent patterns in the distribution of Steller sea lions at sea or linkages with SST may have been apparent if analyses

  19. Age-related hearing loss in sea lions and their scientists

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schusterman, Ronald J.; Southall, Brandon; Kastak, David; Reichmuth Kastak, Colleen

    2002-05-01

    Interest in the hearing capabilities of California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) was first stimulated by the echolocation hypothesis and more recently by rising concern about coastal noise pollution. During a series of audiometric tests, we measured the absolute hearing sensitivity of two sea lions and two of their human investigators. Aerial hearing curves for each subject were obtained with a go/no-go procedure and standard psychophysics. Additionally, underwater hearing curves were obtained for the sea lions using the same procedures. Underwater, the older sea lion (22-25 years of age) showed hearing losses relative to the younger sea lion (13-16 years) that ranged from 10 dB at lower frequencies to 50 dB near the upper frequency limit. The older sea lions' hearing losses in air were consistent with those measured underwater. The older human (69 years) tested also showed losses relative to the younger human (22 years). These differences ranged from 15 dB at lower frequencies up to 35 dB at the highest frequency tested. The results obtained in this study document age-related hearing losses in sea lions and humans. The findings are consistent with data on presbycusis in other mammalian species, showing that maximum hearing loss occurs at the highest frequencies.

  20. Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances in the Western Mediterranean Sea waters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brumovský, Miroslav; Karásková, Pavlína; Borghini, Mireno; Nizzetto, Luca

    2016-09-01

    The spatial and temporal distribution of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) in the open Western Mediterranean Sea waters was investigated in this study for the first time. In addition to surface water samples, a deep water sample (1390 m depth) collected in the center of the western basin was analyzed. Perfluorohexanoic acid (PFHxA), perfluoroheptanoic acid (PFHpA), perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), perfluorohexanesulfonate (PFHxS) and perfluorooctanesulfonate (PFOS) were detected in all samples and were the dominant PFASs found. The sum of PFAS concentrations (ΣPFASs) ranged 246-515 pg/L for surface water samples. PFASs in surface water had a relatively homogeneous distribution with levels similar to those previously measured in the Atlantic near the Strait of Gibraltar, in water masses feeding the inflow to the Mediterranean Sea. Higher concentrations of PFHxA, PFHpA and PFHxS were, however, found in the present study. Inflowing Atlantic water and river/coastal discharges are likely the major sources of PFASs to the Western Mediterranean basin. Slightly lower (factor of 2) ΣPFASs was found in the deep water sample (141 pg/L). Such a relatively high contamination of deep water is likely to be linked to recurring deep water renewal fed by downwelling events in the Gulf of Lion and/or Ligurian Sea.

  1. Microplastic sampling in the Mediterranean Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Biginagwa, Fares; Sosthenes, Bahati; Syberg, Kristian

    The extent of microplastic pollution in the Southwestern Mediterranean Sea is not yet known, although on Northwestern part has been previously studied. Plastic samples were collected at 7 transects during a 10 day expedition from Sicily (Italy) to Malaga (Spain) in September 2014. A 330 µM mesh....... This is the first study to assess plastic pollution levels in SW Mediterranean Sea....

  2. Gastric carcinoma in a South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamazaki, Mutsumi; Koutaka, Mitsuru; Une, Yumi

    2016-08-01

    A 22-year-old captive male South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens) developed an undifferentiated carcinoma originating in the cardiac region of the stomach. Clinical symptoms included vomiting, anorexia and weight loss. Ultrasonography and endoscopy showed gastric wall thickness. At necropsy, the gastric wall had significant thickening around the cardiac region, and metastases were found in some organs. Histologically, samples from the stomach wall and metastases showed the same tumor tissue. Immunohistochemistry was positive for epithelium markers. Ductal growth, keratinocytes or signet ring cells were absent. The tumor was classified as an undifferentiated carcinoma using the World Health Organization's (WHO) guide to international classification of tumors in domestic animals. This is the first report of a primary gastric carcinoma in a pinniped.

  3. Gastric carcinoma in a South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens)

    Science.gov (United States)

    YAMAZAKI, Mutsumi; KOUTAKA, Mitsuru; UNE, Yumi

    2016-01-01

    A 22-year-old captive male South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens) developed an undifferentiated carcinoma originating in the cardiac region of the stomach. Clinical symptoms included vomiting, anorexia and weight loss. Ultrasonography and endoscopy showed gastric wall thickness. At necropsy, the gastric wall had significant thickening around the cardiac region, and metastases were found in some organs. Histologically, samples from the stomach wall and metastases showed the same tumor tissue. Immunohistochemistry was positive for epithelium markers. Ductal growth, keratinocytes or signet ring cells were absent. The tumor was classified as an undifferentiated carcinoma using the World Health Organization’s (WHO) guide to international classification of tumors in domestic animals. This is the first report of a primary gastric carcinoma in a pinniped. PMID:27052463

  4. AFSC/REFM: Steller sea lion economic survey data, U.S., 2007, Lew

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The project will produce a valuation function that depends on factors related to Steller sea lion (SSL) protection measures, and may include some combination of the...

  5. Steller sea lion sightings or recaptures of previously marked animals throughout their range, 1987-2014

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This dataset contains information regarding the sighting and capture of previously marked Steller sea lions from 1987 to the present. Marks are seen and documented...

  6. Steller sea lion capture, marking, and handling data across their range 1985-2014

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This database contains information on individual sea lions that were marked or handled from 1985-2014. Individuals were handled for various projects including vital...

  7. Alaska Steller sea lion pup serum chemistry and hematology values, 1998-2011

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — These data were used for an analysis of Steller sea lion pup health and condition by Lander et al. (2013). Serum chemistry and hematological values were measured by...

  8. Antibodies to marine caliciviruses in the Steller sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus Schreber).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barlough, J E; Berry, E S; Goodwin, E A; Brown, R F; DeLong, R L; Smith, A W

    1987-01-01

    Sera from 145 Steller sea lions (76 adults, three subadults, 37 pups, and 29 fetuses) were tested for neutralizing antibodies to nine marine calicivirus serotypes. Antibodies were found to San Miguel sea lion virus (SMSV) types 1, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10 and 13, and to Tillamook (bovine) calicivirus, but no antibodies were found to the walrus calicivirus. Titers (microtiter neutralization assay) ranged from 1:20 to 1:320, with many positive reactions at the higher dilutions (greater than or equal to 1:80). Antibodies to SMSV's 5 and 10 were most common among animals sampled in Alaskan waters, while antibodies to SMSV-6 were most common among pups from the southern Oregon coast. These data provide evidence that Steller sea lions, like their California sea lion (Zalophus c. californianus Lesson) counterparts, have experienced widespread exposure to multiple serotypes of marine caliciviruses.

  9. Alaska Steller Sea Lion and Northern Fur Seal Argos Telemetry Data Archive

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Alaska Ecosystems Program of the NOAA Alaska Fisheries Science Center National Marine Mammal Laboratory conducts research and monitoring on Steller sea lions and...

  10. Steller sea lion haulout and rookery locations in the United States

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus) use terrestrial sites for reproduction, resting, molting, and other activities. Sites used during the breeding season...

  11. AFSC/NMML/CCEP: Food habits of Steller sea lions in Washington, 1993 - 1999

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — From 1993 to 1999, The National Marine Mammal Laboratories' California Current Ecosystem Program (AFSC/NOAA) collected fecal samples from Steller sea lions in...

  12. Monitoring pacific walrus and Steller sea lion haulout activity at Cape Nevenham, Alaska

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — We monitored the number and timing of Pacific walruses (Odobenus rosmarus divergens) and Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus) hauling out on beaches near Cape...

  13. Fingerprint of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in two populations of southern sea lions (Otaria flavescens).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsili, L; Fossi, M C; Casini, S; Savelli, C; Jimenez, B; Junin, M; Castello, H

    1997-02-01

    The fingerprint of 14 polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) was investigated in biopsy, fur, blood, liver and faeces of live and dead specimens of two Argentinian population of southern sea lion (Otaria flavescens). One colony lives in Mar del Plata harbour which is particularly polluted with petroleum, the second (control) colony lives at Punta Bermeja (Patagonia). The highest concentrations of the five carcinogenic PAHs were found in the Mar del Plata sea lions.

  14. Anthropozoonotic Endoparasites in Free-Ranging “Urban” South American Sea Lions (Otaria flavescens)

    OpenAIRE

    Carlos Hermosilla; Liliana M R Silva; Mauricio Navarro; Anja Taubert

    2016-01-01

    The present study represents the first report on the gastrointestinal endoparasite fauna of a free-ranging “urban” colony of South American sea lions (Otaria flavescens) living within the city of Valdivia, Chile. A total of 40 individual faecal samples of South American sea lions were collected during the year 2012 within their natural habitat along the river Calle-Calle and in the local fish market of Valdivia. Coprological analyses applying sodium acetate acetic formalin methanol (SAF) tech...

  15. Gaia and the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kenneth J. Hsü

    2001-12-01

    Full Text Available The Earth is a self-organizing system liking a living organism. Lovelock proposed Gaia as a metaphor to designate the check and balance ofterrestrial temperatures: the Earth is never too hot so that the ocean could boil, and the Earth is never too cold that the ocean could freeze from top to bottom. Hsü proposed that Gaia is endothermic because the life on Earth has been alternate successions of air-conditioners and heaters which evolved and deactivate or reinforce the terrestial greenhouse of carbon dioxide in atmosphere. When Earth was heating up too much, the air-conditioneers, such as anaerobic bacteria, cyanobacteria, skeletal organisms and trees, and finally calcareous plankton, went to work to bring the terrestrial temperature down. When the Earth was freezing at times of continental glaciation, heaters went to work, such as methanogenic bacteria, Ediacaran faunas, tundra and desert plants, and now Homo sapiens. Gaia has to have other organs to keep the self-organizing system vital. This paper presents a postulate that the Miocene Mediterranean Sea acted as Gaia´s kidney. The steady influx of dissolved ions and debris into the ocean causes inevitable increase of ocean´s salinity. The fossil and geochemicl records indicate that the ocean has never been too saline nor too brackish for the survival of normal marine organisms: the salinity ranged from about 32 to 36 pro mil during the last billion years. Ocean-drilling cruises to the Mediterranean discovered a very large salt formation, deposited during some 5 million years ago when the Mediterranean dried up. A study of the geochemical balance of the oceans indicates that the deposition of very large salt bodies in isolated basins such as the Miocene Mediterranean every 100 million years or so. The saline giants have the function of Gaia´s kidney. With periodical removals of the salt ions and the heavy metals from seawater, the world´s ocean have been rendered forever habitable. Gaia

  16. A Robotic Platform to Study the Foreflipper of the California Sea Lion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kulkarni, Aditya A; Patel, Rahi K; Friedman, Chen; Leftwich, Megan C

    2017-01-10

    The California sea lion (Zalophus californianus), is an agile and powerful swimmer. Unlike many successful swimmers (dolphins, tuna), they generate most of their thrust with their large foreflippers. This protocol describes a robotic platform designed to study the hydrodynamic performance of the swimming California sea lion (Zalophus californianus). The robot is a model of the animal's foreflipper that is actuated by motors to replicate the motion of its propulsive stroke (the 'clap'). The kinematics of the sea lion's propulsive stroke are extracted from video data of unmarked, non-research sea lions at the Smithsonian Zoological Park (SNZ). Those data form the basis of the actuation motion of the robotic flipper presented here. The geometry of the robotic flipper is based a on high-resolution laser scan of a foreflipper of an adult female sea lion, scaled to about 60% of the full-scale flipper. The articulated model has three joints, mimicking the elbow, wrist and knuckle joint of the sea lion foreflipper. The robotic platform matches dynamics properties-Reynolds number and tip speed-of the animal when accelerating from rest. The robotic flipper can be used to determine the performance (forces and torques) and resulting flowfields.

  17. Hydrothermalism in the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dando, P. R.; Stüben, D.; Varnavas, S. P.

    1999-08-01

    Hydrothermalism in the Mediterranean Sea results from the collision of the African and European plates, with the subduction of the oceanic part of the African plate below Europe. High heat flows in the resulting volcanic arcs and back-arc extensional areas have set-up hydrothermal convection systems. Most of the known hydrothermal sites are in shallow coastal waters, <200 m depth, so that much of the reported fluid venting is of the gasohydrothermal type. The hydrothermal liquids are of varying salinities, both because of phase separation as a result of seawater boiling at the low pressures and because of significant inputs of rainfall into the hydrothermal reservoirs at some sites. The major component of the vented gas is carbon dioxide, with significant quantities of sulphur dioxide, hydrogen sulphide, methane and hydrogen also being released. Acid leaching of the underlying rocks leads to the mobilisation of heavy metals, many of which are deposited sub-surface although there is a conspicuous enrichment of metals in surficial sediments in venting areas. Massive polymetalic sulphides have been reported from some sites. No extant vent-specific fauna have been described from Mediterranean sites. There is a reduced diversity of fauna within the sediments at the vents. In contrast, a high diversity of epifauna has been reported and the vent sites are areas of settlement for exotic thermophilic species. Large numbers of novel prokaryotes, especially hyperthermophilic crenarchaeota, have been isolated from Mediterranean hydrothermal vents. However, their distribution in the subsurface biosphere and their role in the biogeochemistry of the sites has yet to be studied.

  18. Detection and characterization of diverse coccidian protozoa shed by California sea lions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yvette A. Girard

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Tissue-cyst forming coccidia in the family Sarcocystidae are etiologic agents of protozoal encephalitis in marine mammals including the federally listed Southern sea otter (Enhydra lutris. California sea lions (Zalophus californianus, whose coastal habitat overlaps with sea otters, are definitive hosts for coccidian protozoa provisionally named Coccidia A, B and C. While Coccidia A and B have unknown clinical effects on aquatic wildlife hosts, Coccidia C is associated with severe protozoal disease in harbor seals (Phoca vitulina. In this study, we conducted surveillance for protozoal infection and fecal shedding in hospitalized and free-ranging California sea lions on the Pacific Coast and examined oocyst morphology and phenotypic characteristics of isolates via mouse bioassay and cell culture. Coccidia A and B were shed in similar frequency, particularly by yearlings. Oocysts shed by one free-ranging sea lion sampled at Año Nuevo State Park in California were previously unidentified in sea lions and were most similar to coccidia infecting Guadalupe fur seals (Arctocephalus townsendi diagnosed with protozoal disease in Oregon (USA. Sporulated Coccidia A and B oocysts did not replicate in three strains of mice or in African green monkey kidney cells. However, cultivation experiments revealed that the inoculum of fecally-derived Coccidia A and B oocysts additionally contained organisms with genetic and antigenic similarity to Sarcocystis neurona; despite the absence of detectable free sporocysts in fecal samples by microscopic examination. In addition to the further characterization of Coccidia A and B in free-ranging and hospitalized sea lions, these results provide evidence of a new role for sea lions as putative mechanical vectors of S. neurona, or S. neurona-like species. Future work is needed to clarify the distribution, taxonomical status, and pathogenesis of these parasites in sea lions and other marine mammals that share their the near

  19. Detection and characterization of diverse coccidian protozoa shed by California sea lions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Girard, Yvette A.; Johnson, Christine K.; Fritz, Heather M.; Shapiro, Karen; Packham, Andrea E.; Melli, Ann C.; Carlson-Bremer, Daphne; Gulland, Frances M.; Rejmanek, Daniel; Conrad, Patricia A.

    2015-01-01

    Tissue-cyst forming coccidia in the family Sarcocystidae are etiologic agents of protozoal encephalitis in marine mammals including the federally listed Southern sea otter (Enhydra lutris). California sea lions (Zalophus californianus), whose coastal habitat overlaps with sea otters, are definitive hosts for coccidian protozoa provisionally named Coccidia A, B and C. While Coccidia A and B have unknown clinical effects on aquatic wildlife hosts, Coccidia C is associated with severe protozoal disease in harbor seals (Phoca vitulina). In this study, we conducted surveillance for protozoal infection and fecal shedding in hospitalized and free-ranging California sea lions on the Pacific Coast and examined oocyst morphology and phenotypic characteristics of isolates via mouse bioassay and cell culture. Coccidia A and B were shed in similar frequency, particularly by yearlings. Oocysts shed by one free-ranging sea lion sampled at Año Nuevo State Park in California were previously unidentified in sea lions and were most similar to coccidia infecting Guadalupe fur seals (Arctocephalus townsendi) diagnosed with protozoal disease in Oregon (USA). Sporulated Coccidia A and B oocysts did not replicate in three strains of mice or in African green monkey kidney cells. However, cultivation experiments revealed that the inoculum of fecally-derived Coccidia A and B oocysts additionally contained organisms with genetic and antigenic similarity to Sarcocystis neurona; despite the absence of detectable free sporocysts in fecal samples by microscopic examination. In addition to the further characterization of Coccidia A and B in free-ranging and hospitalized sea lions, these results provide evidence of a new role for sea lions as putative mechanical vectors of S. neurona, or S. neurona-like species. Future work is needed to clarify the distribution, taxonomical status, and pathogenesis of these parasites in sea lions and other marine mammals that share their the near-shore marine

  20. Detection and characterization of diverse coccidian protozoa shed by California sea lions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Girard, Yvette A; Johnson, Christine K; Fritz, Heather M; Shapiro, Karen; Packham, Andrea E; Melli, Ann C; Carlson-Bremer, Daphne; Gulland, Frances M; Rejmanek, Daniel; Conrad, Patricia A

    2016-04-01

    Tissue-cyst forming coccidia in the family Sarcocystidae are etiologic agents of protozoal encephalitis in marine mammals including the federally listed Southern sea otter (Enhydra lutris). California sea lions (Zalophus californianus), whose coastal habitat overlaps with sea otters, are definitive hosts for coccidian protozoa provisionally named Coccidia A, B and C. While Coccidia A and B have unknown clinical effects on aquatic wildlife hosts, Coccidia C is associated with severe protozoal disease in harbor seals (Phoca vitulina). In this study, we conducted surveillance for protozoal infection and fecal shedding in hospitalized and free-ranging California sea lions on the Pacific Coast and examined oocyst morphology and phenotypic characteristics of isolates via mouse bioassay and cell culture. Coccidia A and B were shed in similar frequency, particularly by yearlings. Oocysts shed by one free-ranging sea lion sampled at Año Nuevo State Park in California were previously unidentified in sea lions and were most similar to coccidia infecting Guadalupe fur seals (Arctocephalus townsendi) diagnosed with protozoal disease in Oregon (USA). Sporulated Coccidia A and B oocysts did not replicate in three strains of mice or in African green monkey kidney cells. However, cultivation experiments revealed that the inoculum of fecally-derived Coccidia A and B oocysts additionally contained organisms with genetic and antigenic similarity to Sarcocystis neurona; despite the absence of detectable free sporocysts in fecal samples by microscopic examination. In addition to the further characterization of Coccidia A and B in free-ranging and hospitalized sea lions, these results provide evidence of a new role for sea lions as putative mechanical vectors of S. neurona, or S. neurona-like species. Future work is needed to clarify the distribution, taxonomical status, and pathogenesis of these parasites in sea lions and other marine mammals that share their the near-shore marine

  1. Cloning and Characterization of Glutamate Receptors in Californian Sea Lions (Zalophus californianus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Santokh Gill

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Domoic acid produced by marine algae has been shown to cause acute and chronic neurologic sequelae in Californian sea lions following acute or low-dose exposure. Histological findings in affected animals included a degenerative cardiomyopathy that was hypothesized to be caused by over-excitation of the glutamate receptors (GluRs speculated to be present in the sea lion heart. Thus tissues from five sea lions without lesions associated with domoic acid toxicity and one animal with domoic acid-induced chronic neurologic sequelae and degenerative cardiomyopathy were examined for the presence of GluRs. Immunohistochemistry localized mGluR 2/3, mGluR 5, GluR 2/3 and NMDAR 1 in structures of the conducting system and blood vessels. NMDAR 1 and GluR 2/3 were the most widespread as immunoreactivity was observed within sea lion conducting system structures. PCR analysis, cloning and subsequent sequencing of the seal lion GluRs showed only 80% homology to those from rats, but more than 95% homologous to those from dogs. The cellular distribution and expression of subtypes of GluRs in the sea lion hearts suggests that exposure to domoic acid may induce cardiac damage and functional disturbances.

  2. Are California Sea Lions (Zalophus californianus Sensitive to the Attentional State of their Caretakers?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marie Penel

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Human-animal relations appear in various contexts (homes, farms, zoos, aquatic parks, etc. possibly favoring the emergence of the ability to understand heterospecific communication signals in several species. Studies show that dogs (Canis familiaris have developed the ability to attribute attention to humans, reading their body, head and gaze cues. Horses (Equus caballus and other species including African gray parrots (Psittacus erithacus show this ability too. Here, we asked if California sea lions (Zalophus californianus can discriminate the attentional state of their caretakers. Four sea lions were tested in three increasingly complex experiments requiring them to make a choice between an attentive versus an inattentive caretaker. The first test asked whether sea lions could attribute attention to a human facing them versus facing away. In the second test, the caretaker’s head orientation towards the sea lion served as the attentional cue. In the final test, the inattentive caretaker wore dark sunglasses. The results were heterogeneous and showed a higher rate of success than failure in the test 1, but the opposite in test 2. The results in the test 3 were not significant. Furthermore, the latency measures suggested that the subjects did not understand the tasks. It therefore appears that in the situation used here sea lions mainly focused their attention on the experimenter’s body orientation; the head did not seem to be a pertinent cue.

  3. Isolation by distance among California sea lion populations in Mexico: redefining management stocks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Suárez, M; Flatz, R; Aurioles-Gamboa, D; Hedrick, P W; Gerber, L R

    2009-03-01

    Understanding the spatial structure of a population is critical for effective assessment and management. However, direct observation of spatial dynamics is generally difficult, particularly for marine mammals. California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) are polygynous pinnipeds distributed along the Pacific coast of North America. The species' range has been subdivided into three management stocks based on differences in mitochondrial DNA, but to date no studies have considered nuclear genetic variation, and thus we lack a comprehensive understanding of gene flow patterns among sea lion colonies. In light of recent population declines in the Gulf of California, Mexico, it is important to understand spatial structure to determine if declining sea lion colonies are genetically isolated from others. To define population subdivision and identify sex biases in gene flow, we analysed a 355-bp sequence of the mitochondrial DNA control region and 10 polymorphic microsatellite loci from 355 tissue samples collected from six colonies distributed along Mexican waters. Using a novel approach to estimate sex biases in gene flow, we found that male sea lions disperse on average 6.75 times more frequently than females. Analyses of population subdivision strongly suggest a pattern of isolation by distance among colonies and challenge current stock definitions. Based on these results, we propose an alternative classification that identifies three Mexican management units: Upper Gulf of California, Southern Baja Peninsula, and Upper Pacific Coast of Baja. This revised classification should be considered in future assessment and management of California sea lion populations in Mexican waters.

  4. Behaviour of Southern sea lions in presence of killer whales during fishing operations in Central Chile

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luis Hückstädt

    2004-06-01

    Full Text Available The killer whale is an opportunistic top-predator of ecosystems worldwide and its diet varies locally and seasonally, which is reflected in diverse feeding behaviours associated with its prey. We report the occurrence of killer whales presumably predating on southern sea lions associated with the jack mackerel fishing fleet in central Chile. The presence of killer whales was recorded during 4 fishing sets. All sightings consisted of 3-5 individual pods of females and calves. The number of sea lions was not significantly affected by the presence of killer whales, but their behaviour was, by reducing the number of behavioural displays, as they stopped feeding and resting activities and stayed close to the hull of the vessel after net retrieval ended. We propose that killer whales could be using the fishery as an indirect source of prey to benefit from the aggregation of sea lions around the vessel, far away from land.

  5. Food limitation of sea lion pups and the decline of forage off central and southern California.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McClatchie, Sam; Field, John; Thompson, Andrew R; Gerrodette, Tim; Lowry, Mark; Fiedler, Paul C; Watson, William; Nieto, Karen M; Vetter, Russell D

    2016-03-01

    California sea lions increased from approximately 50 000 to 340 000 animals in the last 40 years, and their pups are starving and stranding on beaches in southern California, raising questions about the adequacy of their food supply. We investigated whether the declining sea lion pup weight at San Miguel rookery was associated with changes in abundance and quality of sardine, anchovy, rockfish and market squid forage. In the last decade off central California, where breeding female sea lions from San Miguel rookery feed, sardine and anchovy greatly decreased in biomass, whereas market squid and rockfish abundance increased. Pup weights fell as forage food quality declined associated with changes in the relative abundances of forage species. A model explained 67% of the variance in pup weights using forage from central and southern California and 81% of the variance in pup weights using forage from the female sea lion foraging range. A shift from high to poor quality forage for breeding females results in food limitation of the pups, ultimately flooding animal rescue centres with starving sea lion pups. Our study is unusual in using a long-term, fishery-independent dataset to directly address an important consequence of forage decline on the productivity of a large marine predator. Whether forage declines are environmentally driven, are due to a combination of environmental drivers and fishing removals, or are due to density-dependent interactions between forage and sea lions is uncertain. However, declining forage abundance and quality was coherent over a large area (32.5-38° N) for a decade, suggesting that trends in forage are environmentally driven.

  6. Transformation of the genital epithelial tract occurs early in California sea lion development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barragán-Vargas, Cecilia; Montano-Frías, Jorge; Ávila Rosales, Germán; Godínez-Reyes, Carlos R; Acevedo-Whitehouse, Karina

    2016-03-01

    An unusually high prevalence of metastatic urogenital carcinoma has been observed in free-ranging California sea lions stranded off the coast of California in the past two decades. No cases have been reported for sea lions in the relatively unpolluted Gulf of California. We investigated occurrence of genital epithelial transformation in 60 sea lions (n=57 pups and 3 adult females) from the Gulf of California and examined whether infection by a viral pathogen previously found to be associated with urogenital carcinoma accounted for such alterations. We also explored the contribution of MHC class II gene expression on transformation. Cellular alterations, such as squamous cell atypia (ASC), atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance (ASCUS) and low-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions were observed in 42% of the pups and in 67% of the adult females. Normal genital epithelium was more common in male than female pups. ASC was five times more likely to occur in older pups. Epithelial alterations were unrelated to infection by the potentially oncogenic otarine type I gammaherpesvirus (OtHV-1), but ASCUS was more common in pups with marked and severe inflammation. Expression of MHC class II DRB loci (Zaca DRB-D) by peripheral antigen-presenting leucocytes showed a slightly 'protective' effect for ASC. We propose that transformation of the California sea lion genital epithelium is relatively common in young animals, increases with age and is probably the result of infection by an unidentified pathogen. Expression of a specific MHC class II gene, suggestive of presentation of specific antigenic peptides to immune effectors, appears to lower the risk of transformation. Our study provides the first evidence that epithelial transformation of the California sea lion genital tract is relatively common, even from an early age, and raises questions regarding differences in sea lion cancer-detection and -repair success between geographical regions.

  7. Transformation of the genital epithelial tract occurs early in California sea lion development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barragán-Vargas, Cecilia; Montano-Frías, Jorge; Ávila Rosales, Germán; Godínez-Reyes, Carlos R.; Acevedo-Whitehouse, Karina

    2016-01-01

    An unusually high prevalence of metastatic urogenital carcinoma has been observed in free-ranging California sea lions stranded off the coast of California in the past two decades. No cases have been reported for sea lions in the relatively unpolluted Gulf of California. We investigated occurrence of genital epithelial transformation in 60 sea lions (n=57 pups and 3 adult females) from the Gulf of California and examined whether infection by a viral pathogen previously found to be associated with urogenital carcinoma accounted for such alterations. We also explored the contribution of MHC class II gene expression on transformation. Cellular alterations, such as squamous cell atypia (ASC), atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance (ASCUS) and low-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions were observed in 42% of the pups and in 67% of the adult females. Normal genital epithelium was more common in male than female pups. ASC was five times more likely to occur in older pups. Epithelial alterations were unrelated to infection by the potentially oncogenic otarine type I gammaherpesvirus (OtHV-1), but ASCUS was more common in pups with marked and severe inflammation. Expression of MHC class II DRB loci (Zaca DRB-D) by peripheral antigen-presenting leucocytes showed a slightly ‘protective’ effect for ASC. We propose that transformation of the California sea lion genital epithelium is relatively common in young animals, increases with age and is probably the result of infection by an unidentified pathogen. Expression of a specific MHC class II gene, suggestive of presentation of specific antigenic peptides to immune effectors, appears to lower the risk of transformation. Our study provides the first evidence that epithelial transformation of the California sea lion genital tract is relatively common, even from an early age, and raises questions regarding differences in sea lion cancer-detection and -repair success between geographical regions. PMID:27069641

  8. Human Impacts on Seals, Sea Lions, and Sea Otters: Integrating Archaeology and Ecology of the Northeast Pacific

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ray Pierotti

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Review of Human Impacts on Seals, Sea Lions, and Sea Otters: Integrating Archaeology and Ecology of the Northeast Pacific. Todd J. Braje and Torben C. Rick, editors. 2011. University of California Press, Berkeley. Pp. 328. $65.00 (hardcover. ISBN 9780520267268.

  9. Natal and breeding philopatry of female Steller sea lions in southeastern Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-01-01

    Information on drivers of dispersal is critical for wildlife conservation but is rare for long-lived marine mammal species with large geographic ranges. We fit multi-state mark-recapture models to resighting data of 369 known-aged Steller sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus) females marked as pups on their natal rookeries in southeastern Alaska from 1994–2005 and monitored from 2001–15. We estimated probabilities of females being first observed parous at their natal site (natal philopatry), and of not moving breeding sites among years (breeding philopatry) at large (> 400 km, all five rookeries in southeastern Alaska) and small (reproductive strategies of sea lions. PMID:28591130

  10. Algal toxin impairs sea lion memory and hippocampal connectivity, with implications for strandings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, Peter F; Reichmuth, Colleen; Rouse, Andrew A; Libby, Laura A; Dennison, Sophie E; Carmichael, Owen T; Kruse-Elliott, Kris T; Bloom, Josh; Singh, Baljeet; Fravel, Vanessa A; Barbosa, Lorraine; Stuppino, Jim J; Van Bonn, William G; Gulland, Frances M D; Ranganath, Charan

    2015-12-18

    Domoic acid (DA) is a naturally occurring neurotoxin known to harm marine animals. DA-producing algal blooms are increasing in size and frequency. Although chronic exposure is known to produce brain lesions, the influence of DA toxicosis on behavior in wild animals is unknown. We showed, in a large sample of wild sea lions, that spatial memory deficits are predicted by the extent of right dorsal hippocampal lesions related to natural exposure to DA and that exposure also disrupts hippocampal-thalamic brain networks. Because sea lions are dynamic foragers that rely on flexible navigation, impaired spatial memory may affect survival in the wild.

  11. Detection and characterization of diverse coccidian protozoa shed by California sea lions

    OpenAIRE

    Girard, Yvette A.; Christine K Johnson; Fritz, Heather M.; Karen Shapiro; Packham, Andrea E.; Melli, Ann C.; Daphne Carlson-Bremer; Frances M. Gulland; Daniel Rejmanek; Conrad, Patricia A.

    2016-01-01

    © 2015 The Authors. Tissue-cyst forming coccidia in the family Sarcocystidae are etiologic agents of protozoal encephalitis in marine mammals including the federally listed Southern sea otter (Enhydra lutris). California sea lions (Zalophus californianus), whose coastal habitat overlaps with sea otters, are definitive hosts for coccidian protozoa provisionally named Coccidia A, B and C. While Coccidia A and B have unknown clinical effects on aquatic wildlife hosts, Coccidia C is associated wi...

  12. Coupled atmosphere-ocean-wave simulations of a storm event over the Gulf of Lion and Balearic Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renault, Lionel; Chiggiato, Jacopo; Warner, John C.; Gomez, Marta; Vizoso, Guillermo; Tintore, Joaquin

    2012-01-01

    The coastal areas of the North-Western Mediterranean Sea are one of the most challenging places for ocean forecasting. This region is exposed to severe storms events that are of short duration. During these events, significant air-sea interactions, strong winds and large sea-state can have catastrophic consequences in the coastal areas. To investigate these air-sea interactions and the oceanic response to such events, we implemented the Coupled Ocean-Atmosphere-Wave-Sediment Transport Modeling System simulating a severe storm in the Mediterranean Sea that occurred in May 2010. During this event, wind speed reached up to 25 m.s-1 inducing significant sea surface cooling (up to 2°C) over the Gulf of Lion (GoL) and along the storm track, and generating surface waves with a significant height of 6 m. It is shown that the event, associated with a cyclogenesis between the Balearic Islands and the GoL, is relatively well reproduced by the coupled system. A surface heat budget analysis showed that ocean vertical mixing was a major contributor to the cooling tendency along the storm track and in the GoL where turbulent heat fluxes also played an important role. Sensitivity experiments on the ocean-atmosphere coupling suggested that the coupled system is sensitive to the momentum flux parameterization as well as air-sea and air-wave coupling. Comparisons with available atmospheric and oceanic observations showed that the use of the fully coupled system provides the most skillful simulation, illustrating the benefit of using a fully coupled ocean-atmosphere-wave model for the assessment of these storm events.

  13. Sedimentological imprint on subseafloor microbial communities in Western Mediterranean Sea Quaternary sediments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M.-C. Ciobanu

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available An interdisciplinary study was conducted to evaluate the relationship between geological and paleoenvironmental parameters and the bacterial and archaeal community structure of two contrasting subseafloor sites in the Western Mediterranean Sea (Ligurian Sea and Gulf of Lion. Both depositional environments in this area are well-documented from paleoclimatic and paleooceanographic point of views. Available data sets allowed us to calibrate the investigated cores with reference and dated cores previously collected in the same area, and notably correlated to Quaternary climate variations. DNA-based fingerprints showed that the archaeal diversity was composed by one group, Miscellaneous Crenarchaeotic Group (MCG, within the Gulf of Lion sediments and of nine different lineages (dominated by MCG, South African Gold Mine Euryarchaeotal Group (SAGMEG and Halobacteria within the Ligurian Sea sediments. Bacterial molecular diversity at both sites revealed mostly the presence of the classes Alphaproteobacteria, Betaproteobacteria and Gammaproteobacteria within Proteobacteria phylum, and also members of Bacteroidetes phylum. The second most abundant lineages were Actinobacteria and Firmicutes at the Gulf of Lion site and Chloroflexi at the Ligurian Sea site. Various substrates and cultivation conditions allowed us to isolate 75 strains belonging to four lineages: Alpha-, Gammaproteobacteria, Firmicutes and Actinobacteria. In molecular surveys, the Betaproteobacteria group was consistently detected in the Ligurian Sea sediments, characterized by a heterolithic facies with numerous turbidites from a deep-sea levee. Analysis of relative betaproteobacterial abundances and turbidite frequency suggested that the microbial diversity was a result of main climatic changes occurring during the last 20 ka. Statistical direct multivariate canonical correspondence

  14. Detection of domoic acid in northern anchovies and California sea lions associated with an unusual mortality event.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lefebvre, K A; Powell, C L; Busman, M; Doucette, G J; Moeller, P D; Silver, J B; Miller, P E; Hughes, M P; Singaram, S; Silver, M W; Tjeerdema, R S

    1999-01-01

    The occurrence of an unusual mortality event involving California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) along the central California coast in May 1998 was recently reported. The potent neurotoxin domoic acid (DA), produced naturally by the diatom Pseudo-nitzschia australis and transmitted to the sea lions via planktivorous northern anchovies (Engraulis mordax), was identified as the probable causative agent. Details of DA analyses for anchovy tissues and sea lion feces are described. Domoic acid levels were estimated in anchovy samples by HPLC-UV, and in sea lion feces using the same method as well as a microplate receptor binding assay, with absolute confirmation by tandem mass spectrometry. The highest DA concentrations in anchovies occurred in the viscera (223 +/- 5 microg DA g(-1)), exceeding values in the body tissues by seven-fold and suggesting minimal bioaccumulation of DA in anchovy tissue. HPLC values for DA in sea lion fecal material (ranging from 152 to 136.5 microg DA g(-1)) required correction for interference from an unidentified compound. Inter-laboratory comparisons of HPLC data showed close quantitative agreement. Fecal DA activity determined using the receptor binding assay corresponded with HPLC values to within a factor of two. Finally, our detection of P. australis frustules, via scanning electron microscopy, in both anchovy viscera and fecal material from sea lions exhibiting seizures provides corroborating evidence that this toxic algal species was involved in this unusual sea lion mortality event.

  15. Antibiotic efficacy in eliminating leptospiruria in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) stranding with leptospirosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Infection of California sea lions with leptospirosis can result in stranding and death of the animals. Shedding of the infectious organism contributes to spread of the disease to other animals and also poses a threat to human health. This is both for the public interacting with stranded animals and ...

  16. Dissecting the Influences of Climate and Demography on the Dynamics of Leptospirosis in California Sea Lions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leptospirosis is a zoonotic infection of global importance, yet its population dynamics remain poorly understood. We present the first empirically-motivated study of the dynamics of leptospirosis, drawing on a unique 24-year time series of disease in California sea lions (CSLs). Since the early 19...

  17. Underwater hearing sensivity of a male and female Steller sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kastelein, R.A.; Schie, van R.; Verboom, W.C.; Haan, de D.

    2005-01-01

    The unmasked underwater hearing sensitivities of an 8-year-old male and a 7-year-old female Steller sea lion were measured in a pool, by using behavioral psychophysics. The animals were trained with positive reinforcement to respond when they detected an acoustic signal and not to respond when they

  18. Underwater hearing sensitivity of a male and a female Steller sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kastelein, R.A.; Schie, R. van; Verboom, W.C.; Haan, D. de

    2005-01-01

    The unmasked underwater hearing sensitivities of an 8-year-old male and a 7-year-old female Steller sea lion were measured in a pool, by using behavioral psychophysics. The animals were trained with positive reinforcement to respond when they detected an acoustic signal and not to respond when they

  19. Digenetic trematodes in South American sea lions from southern Brazilian waters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, E M; Müller, G; Secchi, E; Pereira, J; Valente, A L S

    2013-10-01

    The aim of this work was to perform a systematic study to detect and quantify the digenetic trematode infections in South American sea lions from the southern Brazilian coast. Twenty-four South American sea lions, Otaria flavescens (Carnivora: Otaridae), were found dead along the coast of Rio Grande do Sul State, Brazil, between June 2010 and September of 2011. Two trematode species were found in the intestines of O. flavescens, i.e., Stephanoprora uruguayense (Digenea: Echinostomatidae) and Ascocotyle (Phagicola) longa (Digenea: Heterophyidae). Ascocotyle (P.) longa reached a prevalence of 33.3% and mean intensity of 248,500, whereas S. uruguayense showed a prevalence of 4.2% and mean intensity of 202. The 2 trematode species infecting sea lions were likely transmitted by feeding on mullets, Mugil platanus, that commonly harbor heterophyid metacercariae. The present work is the first report of digenetic trematodes infecting O. flavescens in Brazil. The high prevalence and mean intensity values of the 2 trematode species infecting sea lions in the present study suggest caution in human consumption of mullets and other fish, which can be infected with the metacercariae of these trematodes known to have zoonotic potential.

  20. Ectoparasites from the South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens from Peruvian coast

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luis A. Gomez-Puerta

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Two species of ectoparasites were collected from a South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens found stranded on the beaches of Chorrillos in Lima, Peru. The ectoparasites were identified as Antarctophthirus microchir (Phthiraptera and Orthohalarachne attenuata (Acari. Some morphological characteristics are described in this report. The finding of these ectoparasites is the first records in Peru.

  1. Steller sea lion satellite telemetry data used to determine at-sea distribution in the western-central Aleutian Islands, 2000-2013

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This dataset was used for an analysis of the at-sea distribution of Steller sea lions in the western-central Aleutian Islands, Alaska. This analysis was prepared to...

  2. Respiratory Function in Voluntary Participating Patagonia Sea Lions (Otaria flavescens) in Sternal Recumbency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fahlman, Andreas; Madigan, Johnny

    2016-01-01

    We measured esophageal pressures (n = 4), respiratory flow rates (n = 5), and expired O2 and CO2 (n = 4) in five adult Patagonia sea lions (Otaria flavescens, body mass range 94.3-286.0 kg) during voluntary breaths while laying down out of water. The data were used to estimate the dynamic specific lung compliance (sCL), the O2 consumption rate ([Formula: see text]O2) and CO2 production rates ([Formula: see text]CO2) during rest. Our results indicate that the resting tidal volume in Patagonia sea lions is approximately 47-73% of the estimated total lung capacity. The esophageal pressures indicated that expiration is passive during voluntary breaths. The average sCL of sea lions was 0.41 ± 0.11 cmH2O(-1), which is similar to those measured in anesthetized sea lions and awake cetaceans, and significantly higher as compared to humans (0.08 cmH2O(-1)). The average estimated [Formula: see text]O2 and [Formula: see text]CO2 using breath-by-breath respirometry were 1.023 ± 0.327 L O2 min(-1) (range: 0.695-1.514 L O2 min(-1)) and 0.777 ± 0.318 L CO2 min(-1), (range: 0.510-1.235 L CO2 min(-1)), respectively, which is similar to previously published metabolic measurements from California and Steller sea lions using conventional flow-through respirometry. Our data provide end-tidal gas composition and offer novel data for respiratory physiology in pinnipeds, which may be important for clinical medicine and conservation efforts.

  3. Plastic Accumulation in the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cózar, Andrés; Sanz-Martín, Marina; Martí, Elisa; González-Gordillo, J. Ignacio; Ubeda, Bárbara; Gálvez, José Á.; Irigoien, Xabier; Duarte, Carlos M.

    2015-01-01

    Concentrations of floating plastic were measured throughout the Mediterranean Sea to assess whether this basin can be regarded as a great accumulation region of plastic debris. We found that the average density of plastic (1 item per 4 m2), as well as its frequency of occurrence (100% of the sites sampled), are comparable to the accumulation zones described for the five subtropical ocean gyres. Plastic debris in the Mediterranean surface waters was dominated by millimeter-sized fragments, but showed a higher proportion of large plastic objects than that present in oceanic gyres, reflecting the closer connection with pollution sources. The accumulation of floating plastic in the Mediterranean Sea (between 1,000 and 3,000 tons) is likely related to the high human pressure together with the hydrodynamics of this semi-enclosed basin, with outflow mainly occurring through a deep water layer. Given the biological richness and concentration of economic activities in the Mediterranean Sea, the affects of plastic pollution on marine and human life are expected to be particularly frequent in this plastic accumulation region. PMID:25831129

  4. Plastic accumulation in the Mediterranean sea.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrés Cózar

    Full Text Available Concentrations of floating plastic were measured throughout the Mediterranean Sea to assess whether this basin can be regarded as a great accumulation region of plastic debris. We found that the average density of plastic (1 item per 4 m2, as well as its frequency of occurrence (100% of the sites sampled, are comparable to the accumulation zones described for the five subtropical ocean gyres. Plastic debris in the Mediterranean surface waters was dominated by millimeter-sized fragments, but showed a higher proportion of large plastic objects than that present in oceanic gyres, reflecting the closer connection with pollution sources. The accumulation of floating plastic in the Mediterranean Sea (between 1,000 and 3,000 tons is likely related to the high human pressure together with the hydrodynamics of this semi-enclosed basin, with outflow mainly occurring through a deep water layer. Given the biological richness and concentration of economic activities in the Mediterranean Sea, the affects of plastic pollution on marine and human life are expected to be particularly frequent in this plastic accumulation region.

  5. Plastic accumulation in the Mediterranean sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cózar, Andrés; Sanz-Martín, Marina; Martí, Elisa; González-Gordillo, J Ignacio; Ubeda, Bárbara; Gálvez, José Á; Irigoien, Xabier; Duarte, Carlos M

    2015-01-01

    Concentrations of floating plastic were measured throughout the Mediterranean Sea to assess whether this basin can be regarded as a great accumulation region of plastic debris. We found that the average density of plastic (1 item per 4 m2), as well as its frequency of occurrence (100% of the sites sampled), are comparable to the accumulation zones described for the five subtropical ocean gyres. Plastic debris in the Mediterranean surface waters was dominated by millimeter-sized fragments, but showed a higher proportion of large plastic objects than that present in oceanic gyres, reflecting the closer connection with pollution sources. The accumulation of floating plastic in the Mediterranean Sea (between 1,000 and 3,000 tons) is likely related to the high human pressure together with the hydrodynamics of this semi-enclosed basin, with outflow mainly occurring through a deep water layer. Given the biological richness and concentration of economic activities in the Mediterranean Sea, the affects of plastic pollution on marine and human life are expected to be particularly frequent in this plastic accumulation region.

  6. Plastic Accumulation in the Mediterranean Sea

    KAUST Repository

    Cózar, Andrés

    2015-04-01

    Concentrations of floating plastic were measured throughout the Mediterranean Sea to assess whether this basin can be regarded as a great accumulation region of plastic debris. We found that the average density of plastic (1 item per 4 m2), as well as its frequency of occurrence (100% of the sites sampled), are comparable to the accumulation zones described for the five subtropical ocean gyres. Plastic debris in the Mediterranean surface waters was dominated by millimeter-sized fragments, but showed a higher proportion of large plastic objects than that present in oceanic gyres, reflecting the closer connection with pollution sources. The accumulation of floating plastic in the Mediterranean Sea (between 1,000 and 3,000 tons) is likely related to the high human pressure together with the hydrodynamics of this semi-enclosed basin, with outflow mainly occurring through a deep water layer. Given the biological richness and concentration of economic activities in the Mediterranean Sea, the affects of plastic pollution on marine and human life are expected to be particularly frequent in this plastic accumulation region.

  7. box modeling of the eastern mediterranean sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ashkenazy, Y.; Stone, P. H.

    2003-04-01

    Recently (~1990) a new source of deep water formation in the Eastern Mediterranean was found in the southern part of the Aegean sea. Till then, the only source of deep water formation in the Eastern Mediterranean was in the Adriatic sea; the rate of the deep water formation of the new Aegean source is 1Sv=10^6m^3/s, three times larger then the Adriatic source. We develop a simple 3 box-model to study the stability of the thermohaline circulation of the Eastern Mediterranean sea. The 3 boxes represent the Adriatic sea, Aegean sea, and the Ionian sea. The boxes exchange heat and salinity and may be described by a set of nonlinear differential equations. We analytically analyze these equations and find that the system may have one, two, or four stable flux states. We consider two cases for which the temperatures of the boxes are (i) fixed or (ii) variable. After setting the parameters to correspond to the Eastern Mediterranean we find that the system has two stable states, one with (i) two thermally dominant sources of deep water formation in the Adriatic and Aegean and the other with (ii) a salinity dominant source of deep water formation in the Adriatic and a thermally dominant source in the Aegean. While the Adriatic thermally dominant source is comparable to the observed flux of 0.3Sv the Aegean source has much smaller flux than the observed value. This situation is analogous to the state of the thermohaline circulation pre 1990 where the only source of deep water formation was in the Adriatic. If we decrease the atmospheric temperature of the Aegean box by 2C in accordance with recent observations, we find that the deep water formation of the Aegean increases significantly to a value comparable to the recently observed flux.

  8. Tracing early stages of species differentiation: ecological, morphological and genetic divergence of Galápagos sea lion populations

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Wolf, Jochen B W; Harrod, Chris; Brunner, Sylvia; Salazar, Sandie; Trillmich, Fritz; Tautz, Diethard

    2008-01-01

    ... the evolutionary processes of local divergence in an isolated marine environment. Galápagos sea lions (Zalophus wollebaeki) are top predators in this unique setting and have an essentially unlimited dispersal capacity across the entire species range...

  9. AFSC/NMML/CCEP: Natality rates of California sea lions at San Miguel Island, California during 1987-2008

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Marine Mammal Laboratories' California Current Ecosystem Program (AFSC/NOAA) initiated a long-term marking program of California sea lions (Zalophus...

  10. AFSC/NMML/CCEP: Capture and resight data of California sea lions in Washington State, 1989 to 2006

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This dataset contains data from the capture and recapture of over 1500 male California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) from Washington between 1989-2006. The data...

  11. AFSC/NMML/CCEP: Survival Rate of California sea lions at San Miguel Island, California from 1987-2009

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The dataset contains initial capture and marking data for California sea lion (Zalophus californianus) pups at San Miguel Island, California and subsequent...

  12. First Isolation of Streptococcus halichoeri and Streptococcus phocae from a Steller Sea Lion (Eumetopias jubatus) in South Korea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Kichan; Kim, Ji-Yeon; Jung, Suk Chan; Lee, Hee-Soo; Her, Moon; Chae, Chanhee

    2016-01-01

    Streptococcus species are emerging potential pathogens in marine mammals. We report the isolation and identification of Streptococcus halichoeri and Streptococcus phocae in a Steller sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus) in South Korea.

  13. Steller sea lion haulout and rookery locations in the United States for 2016-05-14 (NCEI Accession 0129877)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus) use terrestrial sites for reproduction, resting, molting, and other activities. Sites used during the breeding season...

  14. Foraging behaviour of juvenile female New Zealand sea lions (Phocarctos hookeri in contrasting environments.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elaine S Leung

    Full Text Available Foragers can show adaptive responses to changes within their environment through morphological and behavioural plasticity. We investigated the plasticity in body size, at sea movements and diving behaviour of juvenile female New Zealand (NZ sea lions (Phocarctos hookeri in two contrasting environments. The NZ sea lion is one of the rarest pinnipeds in the world. Most of the species is based at the subantarctic Auckland Islands (AI; considered to be marginal foraging habitat, with a recolonizing population on the Otago Peninsula, NZ mainland (considered to be more optimal habitat. We investigated how juvenile NZ sea lions adjust their foraging behaviour in contrasting environments by deploying satellite-linked platform transmitting terminals (PTTs and time-depth recorders (TDRs on 2-3 year-old females at AI (2007-2010 and Otago (2009-2010. Juvenile female NZ sea lions exhibited plasticity in body size and behaviour. Otago juveniles were significantly heavier than AI juveniles. Linear mixed effects models showed that study site had the most important effect on foraging behaviour, while mass and age had little influence. AI juveniles spent more time at sea, foraged over larger areas, and dove deeper and longer than Otago juveniles. It is difficult to attribute a specific cause to the observed contrasts in foraging behaviour because these differences may be driven by disparities in habitat/prey characteristics, conspecific density levels or interseasonal variation. Nevertheless, the smaller size and increased foraging effort of AI juveniles, combined with the lower productivity in this region, support the hypothesis that AI are less optimal habitat than Otago. It is more difficult for juveniles to forage in suboptimal habitats given their restricted foraging ability and lower tolerance for food limitation compared to adults. Thus, effective management measures should consider the impacts of low resource environments, along with changes that can

  15. Sentinel California sea lions provide insight into legacy organochlorine exposure trends and their association with cancer and infectious disease

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    Nistara Randhawa

    2015-12-01

    Conclusion: Organochlorine contamination has significant associations with health outcomes in California sea lions, raising concerns for humans and other animals eating tainted seafood. While environmental exposure to these organochlorines appears to be decreasing over time based on levels in sea lion tissues, their persistence in the environment and food web for all predators, including humans, and the associated serious health risks, warrant monitoring, possibly through sentinel species like marine mammals.

  16. p,p'-DDE bioaccumulation in female sea lions of the California Channel Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Connolly, John P.; Glaser, David

    2002-05-01

    An area of sediment on the Palos Verdes shelf and in Santa Monica Bay off Los Angeles, CA is contaminated with DDE and other breakdown products of DDT as a result of discharges of DDT through the Whites Point outfall. Elevated concentrations of DDE have been found in the water column of the Palos Verdes Shelf and in various fish species inhabiting the shelf and Santa Monica Bay. High concentrations have also been found in California sea lions from San Miguel Island and sea lion carcasses on Santa Catalina Island. These islands are located some distance from the Palos Verdes shelf and Santa Monica Bay. It was the purpose of this study to determine if it is likely that the Palos Verdes Shelf/Santa Monica Bay sediments were the principal source of the DDE in the Channel Island sea lions via a pathway from sediments to water and fish preyed on by sea lions. A time variable, age dependent, physiologically based toxicokinetic model of female California sea lions was developed. Mass and energy balance equations describe the uptake and loss of contaminants. The contaminants are partitioned among multiple body compartments, including lipid and non-lipid body tissue and milk. Contaminants are distributed into a fetus of females. Physiological and toxicokinetic data were used to establish rates of growth, respiration, reproduction and lactation, internal partitioning of DDE, efficiency of DDE uptake and rates of DDE excretion. The model was used to estimate the likely DDE exposure history of the sea lions in view of their DDE body burdens. Field-measured dietary composition and prey contaminant levels were then used to establish potential exposure to DDE from various regions within the Southern California Bight. Comparison of the estimated exposure history with that attainable from the various regions indicated that the more highly contaminated lactating females were exposed to prey at levels found only on the Palos Verdes Shelf and in Santa Monica Bay. Thus, it is likely

  17. The last glacial-interglacial transition and dinoflagellate cysts in the western Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rouis-Zargouni, Imene; Turon, Jean-Louis; Londeix, Laurent; Kallel, Néjib; Essallami, Latifa

    2012-02-01

    Using the analysis of dinoflagellate cysts in three deep-sea sediments cores situated in the Sicilian-Tunisian Strait, in the Gulf of Lions and in the Alboran Sea, we reconstruct the paleoenvironmental changes that took place during the last glacial-interglacial transition in the western Mediterranean Sea. The development of the warm microflora Impagidinium aculeatum and especially Spiniferites mirabilis appears to be an important proxy for recognizing warm periods as the Bölling/Alleröd and the Early Holocene. Bitectatodinium tepikiense, Spiniferites elongatus and Nematosphaeropsis labyrinthus mark the end of the Heinrich event 1 and the Younger Dryas. This cold microfloral association confirms the drastic climate changes in the western Mediterranean Sea synchronous to the dry and cold climate which occurred in the South European margin. The dinocyst N. labyrinthus shows high percentages in all studied regions during the Younger Dryas. Its distribution reveals a significant increase from the South to the North of this basin during this cold brief event. Thus, we note that this species can be considered as a new eco-stratigraphical tracer of the Younger Dryas in the western Mediterranean Sea.

  18. Environment and feeding change the ability of heart rate to predict metabolism in resting Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Beth L; Rosen, David A S; Haulena, Martin; Hindle, Allyson G; Trites, Andrew W

    2011-01-01

    The ability to use heart rate (fh) to predict oxygen consumption rates ([Formula: see text]) in Steller sea lions and other pinnipeds has been investigated in fasting animals. However, it is unknown whether established fh:[Formula: see text] relationships hold under more complex physiological situations, such as when animals are feeding or digesting. We assessed whether fh could accurately predict [Formula: see text] in trained Steller sea lions while fasting and after being fed. Using linear mixed-effects models, we derived unique equations to describe the fh:[Formula: see text] relationship for fasted sea lions resting on land and in water. Feeding did not significantly change the fh:[Formula: see text] relationship on land. However, Steller sea lions in water displayed a different fh:[Formula: see text] relationship after consuming a 4-kg meal compared with the fasting condition. Incorporating comparable published fh:[Formula: see text] data from Steller sea lions showed a distinct effect of feeding after a 6-kg meal. Ultimately, our study illustrated that both feeding and physical environment are statistically relevant when deriving [Formula: see text] from telemetered fh, but that only environment affects the practical ability to predict metabolism from fh. Updating current bioenergetic models with data gathered using these predictive fh:[Formula: see text] equations will yield more accurate estimates of metabolic rates of free-ranging Steller sea lions under a variety of physiological, behavioral, and environmental states.

  19. Clinical relevance of novel Otarine herpesvirus-3 in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus: lymphoma, esophageal ulcers, and strandings

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Venn-Watson Stephanie

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Herpesviruses have been recognized in marine mammals, but their clinical relevance is not always easy to assess. A novel otarine herpesvirus-3 (OtHV3 was detected in a geriatric California sea lion (Zalophus californianus, and using a newly developed quantitative PCR assay paired with histology, OtHV3 was associated with esophageal ulcers and B cell lymphoblastic lymphoma in this animal. The prevalence and quantities of OtHV3 were then determined among buffy coats from 87 stranded and managed collection sea lions. Stranded sea lions had a higher prevalence of OtHV3 compared to managed collection sea lions (34.9% versus 12.5%; p = 0.04, and among the stranded sea lions, yearlings were most likely to be positive. Future epidemiological studies comparing the presence and viral loads of OtHV3 among a larger population of California sea lions with and without lymphoid neoplasia or esophageal ulcers would help elucidate the relevance of OtHV3-associated pathologies to these groups.

  20. Clinical relevance of novel Otarine herpesvirus-3 in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus): lymphoma, esophageal ulcers, and strandings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venn-Watson, Stephanie; Benham, Celeste; Gulland, Frances M; Smith, Cynthia R; St Leger, Judy; Yochem, Pam; Nollens, Hendrik; Blas-Machado, Uriel; Saliki, Jeremiah; Colegrove, Katie; Wellehan, James Fx; Rivera, Rebecca

    2012-12-12

    Herpesviruses have been recognized in marine mammals, but their clinical relevance is not always easy to assess. A novel otarine herpesvirus-3 (OtHV3) was detected in a geriatric California sea lion (Zalophus californianus), and using a newly developed quantitative PCR assay paired with histology, OtHV3 was associated with esophageal ulcers and B cell lymphoblastic lymphoma in this animal. The prevalence and quantities of OtHV3 were then determined among buffy coats from 87 stranded and managed collection sea lions. Stranded sea lions had a higher prevalence of OtHV3 compared to managed collection sea lions (34.9% versus 12.5%; p = 0.04), and among the stranded sea lions, yearlings were most likely to be positive. Future epidemiological studies comparing the presence and viral loads of OtHV3 among a larger population of California sea lions with and without lymphoid neoplasia or esophageal ulcers would help elucidate the relevance of OtHV3-associated pathologies to these groups.

  1. Inter-population movements of steller sea lions in Alaska with implications for population separation.

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    Lauri A Jemison

    Full Text Available Genetic studies and differing population trends support the separation of Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus into a western distinct population segment (WDPS and an eastern DPS (EDPS with the dividing line between populations at 144° W. Despite little exchange for thousands of years, the gap between the breeding ranges narrowed during the past 15-30 years with the formation of new rookeries near the DPS boundary. We analyzed >22,000 sightings of 4,172 sea lions branded as pups in each DPS from 2000-2010 to estimate probabilities of a sea lion born in one DPS being seen within the range of the other DPS (either 'West' or 'East'. Males from both populations regularly traveled across the DPS boundary; probabilities were highest at ages 2-5 and for males born in Prince William Sound and southern Southeast Alaska. The probability of WDPS females being in the East at age 5 was 0.067 but 0 for EDPS females which rarely traveled to the West. Prince William Sound-born females had high probabilities of being in the East during breeding and non-breeding seasons. We present strong evidence that WDPS females have permanently emigrated to the East, reproducing at two 'mixing zone' rookeries. We documented breeding bulls that traveled >6,500 km round trip from their natal rookery in southern Alaska to the northern Bering Sea and central Aleutian Islands and back within one year. WDPS animals began moving East in the 1990s, following steep population declines in the central Gulf of Alaska. Results of our study, and others documenting high survival and rapid population growth in northern Southeast Alaska suggest that conditions in this mixing zone region have been optimal for sea lions. It is unclear whether eastward movement across the DPS boundary is due to less-optimal conditions in the West or a reflection of favorable conditions in the East.

  2. Inter-population movements of steller sea lions in Alaska with implications for population separation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jemison, Lauri A; Pendleton, Grey W; Fritz, Lowell W; Hastings, Kelly K; Maniscalco, John M; Trites, Andrew W; Gelatt, Tom S

    2013-01-01

    Genetic studies and differing population trends support the separation of Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus) into a western distinct population segment (WDPS) and an eastern DPS (EDPS) with the dividing line between populations at 144° W. Despite little exchange for thousands of years, the gap between the breeding ranges narrowed during the past 15-30 years with the formation of new rookeries near the DPS boundary. We analyzed >22,000 sightings of 4,172 sea lions branded as pups in each DPS from 2000-2010 to estimate probabilities of a sea lion born in one DPS being seen within the range of the other DPS (either 'West' or 'East'). Males from both populations regularly traveled across the DPS boundary; probabilities were highest at ages 2-5 and for males born in Prince William Sound and southern Southeast Alaska. The probability of WDPS females being in the East at age 5 was 0.067 but 0 for EDPS females which rarely traveled to the West. Prince William Sound-born females had high probabilities of being in the East during breeding and non-breeding seasons. We present strong evidence that WDPS females have permanently emigrated to the East, reproducing at two 'mixing zone' rookeries. We documented breeding bulls that traveled >6,500 km round trip from their natal rookery in southern Alaska to the northern Bering Sea and central Aleutian Islands and back within one year. WDPS animals began moving East in the 1990s, following steep population declines in the central Gulf of Alaska. Results of our study, and others documenting high survival and rapid population growth in northern Southeast Alaska suggest that conditions in this mixing zone region have been optimal for sea lions. It is unclear whether eastward movement across the DPS boundary is due to less-optimal conditions in the West or a reflection of favorable conditions in the East.

  3. On the Impacts of Different Surface Forcing Regimes for Deep Water Formation in the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Josey, S.; Tsimplis, M.; Gomis, D.; Ruiz, S.; Marcos, M.; Somot, S.

    2009-04-01

    Deep water formation is known to occur at 3 major sites (the Gulf of Lions, Adriatic and Aegean Seas) in the Mediterranean basin. However, the role played by air-sea interaction in setting the frequency and strength of formation events (including major transient episodes such as that experienced in the Aegean sea in the early 1990s) is not well understood. We will explore this relationship using air-sea heat, freshwater and density flux fields, including output from downscaled versions (HIPOCAS and ARPERA) of the NCEP/NCAR and ECMWF reanalyses. The downscaled fields reveal small scale forcing features (including jet-like structures over the dense water formation sites) that are not present in the coarser resolution reanalysis datasets. They also show greater variability in the forcing of the Aegean and the Gulf of Lions than the Adriatic Sea. The differences between the forcing distributions of the Aegean and Adriatic will be discussed in detail and will be advanced as a potential cause for variations in frequency of dense water formation in these two regions.

  4. ASSOCIATION BETWEEN POSITIVE CANINE HEARTWORM (DIROFILARIA IMMITIS) ANTIGEN RESULTS AND PRESENCE OF ACANTHOCHEILONEMA ODENDHALI MICROFILARIA IN CALIFORNIA SEA LIONS (ZALOPHUS CALIFORNIANUS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krucik, David D R; Van Bonn, William; Johnson, Shawn P

    2016-03-01

    This study establishes a relationship between positive canine heartworm (Dirofilaria immitis) test results frequently observed in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) and infection with the filarid nematode Acanthocheilonema odendhali. Four commercially available canine heartworm antigen tests were evaluated for cross-reaction with A. odendhali in California sea lions. Sera were tested from fifteen California sea lions with A. odendhali-associated microfilaremia, confirmed by blood smear, and with no evidence of D. immitis infection at necropsy. Ninety-five percent of tests were falsely positive for D. immitis. This study also determined that the prevalence of A. odendhali infection in stranded California sea lions from central California is approximately 23% by comparing the number of findings of mircofilaremia to the total number of California sea lions sampled at The Marine Mammal Center between 2005 and 2011, inclusive. Acanthocheilonema odenhali microfilaremia in California sea lions is likely to cross-react with canine heartworm antigen tests, and clinicians should interpret results with caution.

  5. Infection of California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) with terrestrial Brucella spp.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Avalos-Téllez, Rosalía; Ramírez-Pfeiffer, Carlos; Hernández-Castro, Rigoberto; Díaz-Aparicio, Efrén; Sánchez-Domínguez, Carlos; Zavala-Norzagaray, Alan; Arellano-Reynoso, Beatriz; Suárez-Güemes, Francisco; Aguirre, A Alonso; Aurioles-Gamboa, David

    2014-10-01

    Infections with Brucella ceti and pinnipedialis are prevalent in marine mammals worldwide. A total of 22 California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) were examined to determine their exposure to Brucella spp. at San Esteban Island in the Gulf of California, Mexico, in June and July 2011. Although samples of blood, vaginal mucus and milk cultured negative for these bacteria, the application of rose Bengal, agar gel immunodiffusion, PCR and modified fluorescence polarization assays found that five animals (22.7%) had evidence of exposure to Brucella strains. The data also suggested that in two of these five sea lions the strains involved were of terrestrial origin, a novel finding in marine mammals. Further work will be required to validate and determine the epidemiological significance of this finding.

  6. Normal morphology and hormone receptor expression in the male California sea lion (Zalophus californianus) genital tract.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colegrove, Kathleen M; Gulland, Frances M D; Naydan, Diane K; Lowenstine, Linda J

    2009-11-01

    Histomorphology and estrogen alpha (ER alpha), and progesterone receptor (PR) expression were evaluated in free-ranging stranded male California sea lions (Zalophus californianus). Hormone receptor expression was evaluated using an immunohistochemical technique with monoclonal antibodies. Estrogen and PRs were identified in the efferent ductules, prostate gland, corpus cavernosa, corpus spongiosium, penile urethra, and in the epithelium and stroma of both the penis and prepuce. In some tissues, ER alpha expression was more intense in the stroma, emphasizing the importance of the stroma in hormone-mediated growth and differentiation of reproductive organs. To our knowledge, this is the first study to localize ER alpha and PR to the epithelium of the glans penis. The results of this investigation add to the general knowledge of male California sea lion reproduction and suggest that estrogens could have a role in the function of the male reproductive tract.

  7. Gas bubble disease in the brain of a living California sea lion (Zalophus californianus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William George Van Bonn

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available A yearling California sea lion (Zalophus californianus was admitted into rehabilitation with signs of cerebellar pathology. Diagnostic imaging that included radiography and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI demonstrated space-occupying lesions predominantly in the cerebellum that were filled partially by CSF-like fluid and partially by gas, and cerebral lesions that were fluid filled. Over a maximum period of four months, the brain lesions reduced in size and the gas resorbed and was replaced by CSF-like fluid. To test the animal in this study for motor memory deficits, an alternation task in a two-choice maze was utilized. The sea lion performed poorly similar to another case of pneumocerebellum previously reported, and contrary to data acquired from a group of sea lions with specific hippocampal injury. The learning deficits were attributed to the cerebellar injury. These data provide important insight both to the clinical presentation and behavioral observations of cerebellar injury in sea lions, as well as providing an initial model for long-term outcome following cerebellar injury. The specific etiology of the gas could not be determined. The live status of the patient with recovery suggests that the most likely etiologies for the gas are either de novo formation or air emboli secondary to trauma. A small air gun pellet was present within and was removed from soft tissues adjacent to the tympanic bulla. While no evidence to support the pellet striking bone was found, altered dive pattern associated with this human interaction may have provided the opportunity for gas bubble formation to occur. The similarity in distribution of the gas bubble related lesions in this case compared with another previously published case of pneumocerebellum suggests that preferential perfusion of the brain, and more specifically the cerebellum, may occur during diving events.

  8. Deep-diving sea lions exhibit extreme bradycardia in long-duration dives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDonald, Birgitte I; Ponganis, Paul J

    2014-05-01

    Heart rate and peripheral blood flow distribution are the primary determinants of the rate and pattern of oxygen store utilisation and ultimately breath-hold duration in marine endotherms. Despite this, little is known about how otariids (sea lions and fur seals) regulate heart rate (fH) while diving. We investigated dive fH in five adult female California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) during foraging trips by instrumenting them with digital electrocardiogram (ECG) loggers and time depth recorders. In all dives, dive fH (number of beats/duration; 50±9 beats min(-1)) decreased compared with surface rates (113±5 beats min(-1)), with all dives exhibiting an instantaneous fH below resting (100 m) consisted of: (1) an initial rapid decline in fH resulting in the lowest instantaneous fH of the dive at the end of descent, often below 10 beats min(-1) in dives longer than 6 min in duration; (2) a slight increase in fH to ~10-40 beats min(-1) during the bottom portion of the dive; and (3) a gradual increase in fH during ascent with a rapid increase prior to surfacing. Thus, fH regulation in deep-diving sea lions is not simply a progressive bradycardia. Extreme bradycardia and the presumed associated reductions in pulmonary and peripheral blood flow during late descent of deep dives should (a) contribute to preservation of the lung oxygen store, (b) increase dependence of muscle on the myoglobin-bound oxygen store, (c) conserve the blood oxygen store and (d) help limit the absorption of nitrogen at depth. This fH profile during deep dives of sea lions may be characteristic of deep-diving marine endotherms that dive on inspiration as similar fH profiles have been recently documented in the emperor penguin, another deep diver that dives on inspiration.

  9. Respiratory function in voluntary participating Patagonia sea lions in sternal recumbency

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    Andreas Fahlman

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available We measured esophageal pressures (n=4, respiratory flow rates (n=5, and expired O2 and CO2 (n=4 in five adult Patagonia sea lions (Otaria flavescens, body mass range 94.3-286.0 kg during voluntary breaths while laying down. The data were used to estimate the dynamic specific lung compliance (sCL, cmH2O-1, the O2 consumption rate (VO2 and CO2 production rates (VCO2 during rest. Our results indicate that the resting tidal volume in Patagonia sea lions is approximately 47-73% of the estimated total lung capacity. The esophageal pressures indicated that expiration is passive during voluntary breaths. The average sCL of dolphins was 0.41±0.11 cmH2O−1, which is similar to those measured in anesthetized sea lions and awake cetaceans, and significantly higher as compared with humans (0.08 cmH2O−1. The average estimated and using breath-by-breath respirometry were 1.023 ± 0.327 L O2 min-1 (range: 0.695-1.514 L O2 min−1 and 0.777 ± 0.318 L CO2 min-1, (range: 0.510-1.235 L CO2 min-1, respectively, which is similar to previously published metabolic measurements from California and Steller sea lions using conventional flow-through respirometry. Our data provide end-tidal gas composition and provide novel data for respiratory physiology in pinnpeds, which may be important for clinical medicine and conservation efforts.

  10. A study of sea lion hydrodynamics using a robotic foreflipper platform

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kulkarni, Aditya A.; Patel, Rahi K.; Leftwich, Megan C.

    2016-11-01

    Unlike most fish and mammals-that utilize BCF swimming-sea lions rely on their foreflippers to generate thrust without a characteristic flapping frequency. This unique swimming style allows the sea lion to be highly maneuverable, while also producing high amounts of thrust. To explore this motion, and the physics that underlies it, we use novel markerless tracking techniques on untrained sea lions at the Smithsonian National Zoo in Washington, D.C to get the complete motion during different maneuvers. High speed video and three-dimensional surface reconstruction techniques are used to extract the foreflippers kinematics during the thrust phase. Using this data, pitch angle is calculated with respect to the base of the flipper to build a scaled robotic flipper. Dye visualization is carried out in a water channel by injecting dye upstream of the leading edge of the flipper with flow speed set to explore different parameters, like Reynolds number or angular velocity. Results show low pressure on the upper surface of the flipper causes the fluid to be pulled around the flipper forming a vortex that moves fully out of the plane.

  11. The effects of two analgesic regimes on behavior after abdominal surgery in Steller sea lions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Kristen A; Horning, Markus; Mellish, Jo-Ann E; Weary, Daniel M

    2011-10-01

    This study examined the effects of two non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) treatment protocols on the behavioral responses of juvenile Steller sea lions after abdominal surgery. Sea lions were randomly assigned to one of two treatments designed to control post-operative pain. The flunixin group (n=6) received flunixin meglumine (1mg/kg) administered as a single intramuscular (IM) injection before extubation from surgery. The carprofen group (n=5) received carprofen (4.4 mg/kg) as an IM injection before extubation, then orally at 24, 48 and 72 h after surgery. Seven behaviors related to post-operative pain were monitored by observers, blinded to treatment, for a total of 10 days (3 days pre-, day of surgery, and 6 days post-surgery). All seven behaviors changed after surgery regardless of NSAID treatment, two of which returned to baseline within 6 days of surgery. Only one behavior was mildly affected by analgesic treatment: sea lions in the carprofen group tended to spend less time lying down in Days 1-3 following surgery (i.e., the days which they received oral carprofen). These results suggested that neither treatment, at the dose administered, was effective in controlling pain in the days following this surgery.

  12. Psychophysical and electrophysiological aerial audiograms of a Steller sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mulsow, Jason; Reichmuth, Colleen

    2010-04-01

    A within-subject comparison of auditory steady-state response (ASSR) and psychophysical measurements of aerial hearing sensitivity was conducted with an individual of the largest otariid species, the Steller sea lion. Psychophysical methods were used to obtain an unmasked aerial audiogram at 13 frequencies, spanning a range of 0.125-34 kHz. The subject had a hearing range (frequencies audible at 60 dB(rms) re 20 microPa) of about 0.250-30 kHz, and a region of best hearing sensitivity from 5-14.1 kHz. The psychophysical aerial audiogram of this Steller sea lion was remarkably similar to aerial audiograms previously obtained for California sea lions and northern fur seals, suggesting that the otariid pinnipeds form a functional hearing group. ASSR thresholds, measured at frequencies of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, and 32 kHz, were elevated relative to corresponding psychophysical thresholds, ranging from +1 dB at 20 kHz, to +31 dB at 1 kHz. The ASSR audiogram accurately predicted the subject's high-frequency cutoff, and provided a reasonable estimate of hearing sensitivity at frequencies above 2 kHz. In testing situations where psychophysical methods are not possible, ASSR methods may provide an objective and efficient estimate of behavioral hearing sensitivity in otariid pinnipeds.

  13. Olfactory Enrichment in California Sea Lions (Zalophus californianus): An Effective Tool for Captive Welfare?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samuelson, Mystera M; Lauderdale, Lisa K; Pulis, Kelly; Solangi, Moby; Hoffland, Tim; Lyn, Heidi

    2017-01-01

    In the wild, California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) are exposed to a wide variety of sensory information, which cannot be replicated in captive environments. Therefore, unique procedures are necessary for maintaining physiological and psychological health in nonhuman animals in captivity. The effects of introducing natural scents to captive enclosures have been investigated in a variety of species, yet they have not been examined in marine mammals. This project explored the behavioral effect of scent added to the environment, with the goal of improving the welfare of sea lions in captivity. Two scent types were introduced: (a) natural scents, found in their native environment, and (b) non-natural scents, not found in their native environment. This study examined not only scent enrichment but also the possible evolutionary underpinnings of pinniped olfaction. Scent enrichment was found to significantly impact sea lion behavior as demonstrated by a reduction in pattern swimming, an increase in habitat utilization, and a reduction in stereotypical behavior. However, there were no differences in behavior between natural and non-natural scent conditions.

  14. Atmospheric patterns driving Holocene productivity in the Alboran Sea (Western Mediterranean): a multiproxy approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ausin, Blanca; Flores, Jose-Abel; Sierro, Francisco Javier; Cacho, Isabel; Hernández-Almeida, Iván; Martrat, Belén; Grimalt, Joan

    2014-05-01

    This study is aimed to reconstruct productivity during the Holocene in the Western Mediterranean as well as to investigate what processes account for its short-term variability. Fossil coccolithophore assemblages have been studied along with Mg/Ca and Uk'37-estimated Sea Surface Temperature (SST) and other paleoenvironmental proxies. The study site is located in a semi-permanent area of upwelling in the Alboran Sea. This productive cell is of special interest since is closely related to local hydrological dynamics driven by the entering Atlantic Jet (AJ). The onset of this productive cell is suggested at 7.7 ka cal. B.P. and linked to the establishment of the anticyclonic gyres. From 7.7 ka cal. BP to present, the N ratio and accumulation rate of Florisphaera profunda show successive upwelling and stratification events. This alternation is simultaneous to changes in the Western Mediterranean Deep Water (WMDW) formation rate in the Gulf of Lions [Frigola et al., 2007], along with changes in Mg/Ca-estimated SST, relative abundance of reworked nannoliths, pollen grains record [Fletcher et al., 2012] and n-hexacosan-1-ol index. Two scenarios are proposed to explain short-term climatic and oceanographic variability: [1] Wetter climate and weaker north-westerlies blowing over the Gulf of Lions trigger a slackening of the WMDW formation. Consequently, a minor AJ inflows the Alboran Sea leading to less vertical mixing and a deepening of the nutricline and hence, long-term stratification events. [2] Arid climate and stronger north-westerlies enable WMDW reinforcement. In turn, increased AJ triggers vertical mixing and nutricline shoaling, and therefore, productive periods. Finally, changes in atmospheric patterns (e.g. the winter North Atlantic Oscillation; [Olsen et al., 2012]) prove to be useful in explaining the WMDW formation in the Gulf of Lions and associated short-term productivity variations in the Alboran Sea. References Fletcher, W. J., M. Debret, and M. F

  15. Numerical mesoscale air-sea coupling over the Gulf of Lions during two Tramontane/Mistral events

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lebeaupin Brossier, C.; Drobinski, P.

    2009-09-01

    The near-sea surface meteorological conditions associated with strong wind events constitute a strong forcing on the ocean mixed layer. The Gulf of Lions is one of the most windy region of the Mediterranean basin, with frequent Mistral and Tramontane events. These northerly and north-westerly low-level flows, generally induced by a cyclogenesis in the Ligurian basin, are channelled and accelerated in the Rhône and Aude valleys, respectively. They transport cold continental air over sea and induce strong momentum and heat exchanges at the air-sea interface. The local continental shelf circulation with sometimes transient coastal upwellings is also sensitive to these intense meteorological events. This study addresses the question of the sea surface scheme used in mesoscale atmospheric numerical modelling to represent the ocean mixed layer response under these severe wind events. Several slab ocean models have been used coupled with the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model at 21 and 7-km resolution and applied on two Mistral/Tramontane cases (23-26 March 1998 and 5-9 November 1999): (i) a slab model based on the transport divergence equation where the mixed layer evolution is only driven by the wind stress; (ii) a slab model where the temperature is the only prognostic variable and evolves according to the net surface heat budget and (iii) the complete slab scheme from Price [1981]. The coupled simulations were also compared to two basic simulations, one using a constant sea surface temperature (SST) field during all of the model integration and another using a 6 hourly-update SST reanalysis. In this study, we mainly focused on the slab models performances. We identified the processes involved in the ocean mixed layer response under Mistral and Tramontane situations at mesoscale, i. e. local and fast cooling and deepening, and finally we investigated the feedbacks of an interactive ocean mixed layer on the atmospheric simulation.

  16. Pre-collisional geodynamics of the Mediterranean Sea: the Mediterranean Ridge and the Tyrrhenian Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Chaumillon

    1997-06-01

    Full Text Available Today the Mediterranean Sea consists of a series of small-sized and almost geographically disconnected oceanic or continental crust rooted marine basins. It is also an area almost totally surrounded by mountain ranges, which chiefly belong to the alpine realm. This overall geodynamic setting results from a long term convergence between the two major, African and European, plates. Previous collisions have led to the edification of surrounding chains, while subduction and new-collisional processes tend to create new extensional back-arc basins and wide tectonized accretionary prisms. In this paper we briefly outline the most recent and almost land-locked back-arc basin that has developed in the Mediterranean,i.e., the Tyrrhenian Sea, and the Mediterranean Ridge, which may be regarded as a collisional sedimentary wedge predating a future mountain chain.

  17. Zonal distribution of dissolved aluminium in the Mediterranean Sea

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rolison, J. M.; Middag, R.; Stirling, C. H.; Rijkenberg, M. J. A.; de Baar, H. J. W.

    2015-01-01

    Dissolved aluminium (Al) is an important tracer of atmospheric dust input to the oceans. The GEOTRACES expedition to the highly dust impacted Mediterranean Sea afforded the opportunity to study the distribution of dissolved Al in the Mediterranean Sea in detail. Interestingly, the elevated concentra

  18. Influence of a low intensity electric sea lion deterrence system on the migratory behavior of fishes in the upstream migrant tunnel (UMT) at Bonneville Dam.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mesa, Matthew G.; Dixon, Christopher J.

    2010-01-01

    Predation by pinnipeds, such as California sea lions (Zalophus alifornianus), Pacific harbor seals (Phoca vitulina), and Stellar sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus) on returning adult Pacific salmon (Oncorhynchus spp.) in the Columbia River basin has become an increasing concern for fishery managers trying to conserve and restore threatened and endangered runs of

  19. Campylobacter insulaenigrae: first isolation report from south american sea lion (Otaria flavescens, (Shaw, 1800)

    OpenAIRE

    González, M.; M. P. Villanueva; Debruyne, L.; Vandamme, P.; Fernández, H.

    2011-01-01

    Campylobacter insulaenigrae have been isolated from different pinnipeds but not from South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens). The aim of this work is to report the first isolation of C. insulaenigrae from South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens). The isolate, identified by its phenotypic and molecular characteristics, allow recognizing O. flavescens as a new host for C. insulaenigrae.

  20. Galápagos and Californian sea lions are separate species: Genetic analysis of the genus Zalophus and its implications for conservation management

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    Wolf Jochen BW

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Accurate formal taxonomic designations are thought to be of critical importance for the conservation of endangered taxa. The Galápagos sea lion (GSL, being appreciated as a key element of the Galápagos marine ecosystem, has lately been listed as 'vulnerable' by the IUCN. To date there is, however, hardly any scientific evidence, whether it constitutes a separate entity from its abundant Californian neighbour (CSL. In this paper, we delineate the taxonomic relationships within the genus Zalophus being comprised of the Galápagos sea lion, the Californian sea lion and the already extinct Japanese sea lion (JSL. Results Using a set of different phylogenetic reconstruction approaches, we find support for monophyly of all three taxa without evidence of reticulation events. Molecular clock estimates place time to common ancestry of the Galápagos sea lion and the Californian sea lion at about 2.3 ± 0.5 mya. Genetic separation is further suggested by diagnostic SNPs in the mitochondrial and nuclear genome. Microsatellite markers confirm this trend, showing numerous private alleles at most of the 25 investigated loci. Microsatellite-based estimates of genetic differentiation between the Galápagos sea lion and the Californian sea lion indicate significant genetic differentiation. Gene diversity is 14% lower in the Galápagos sea lion than in the Californian sea lion, but there is no evidence for recent bottleneck events in the Galápagos sea lion. Conclusion Based on molecular evidence we build a case for classifying the Galápagos sea lion (Zalophus wollebaeki, the Californian sea lion (Zalophus californianus and the Japanese sea lion (Zalophus japonicus as true species. As morphological characters do not necessarily fully reflect the rapid divergence on the molecular level, the study can be considered as a test case for deriving species status from molecular evidence. We further use the results to discuss the role of genetics in

  1. Diagnosing domoic acid toxicosis in the California sea lion (Zalophus californianus) using behavioral criteria: A novel approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wittmaack, Christiana; Lahvis, Garet P; Keith, Edward O; Self-Sullivan, Caryn

    2015-01-01

    Domoic acid toxicosis in the California sea lion (Zalophus californianus) is difficult to diagnose using presence of toxin alone because the duration of domoic acid presence in blood and urine is generally less than 48 hr following exposure. Because domoic acid toxicosis is often suggested by presentation of behavioral abnormalities, we asked whether assessment of behavior might be useful for diagnostic purposes. We developed an ethogram to categorize behavioral data collected via continuous focal animal sampling. In total, 169 subjects were observed at a rehabilitation center. Sea lions with domoic acid toxicosis displayed head weaving (P < 0.0001) and muscle fasciculations (P < 0.01) significantly more often than animals in a comparison group. Dragging hind flippers and swift scanning were observed exclusively in animals from the domoic acid toxicosis group. The data show that behavioral diagnostic criteria can be effective in the diagnosis of domoic acid toxicosis in the California sea lion.

  2. The temporomandibular joint of California sea lions (Zalophus californianus): part 1 - characterisation in health and disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arzi, B; Murphy, M K; Leale, D M; Vapniarsky-Arzi, N; Verstraete, F J M

    2015-01-01

    This study aimed to characterise the histologic, biomechanical and biochemical properties of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) of California sea lions. In addition, we sought to identify structure-function relationships and to characterise TMJ lesions found in this species. Temporomandibular joints from fresh cadaver heads (n=14) of California sea lions acquired from strandings were examined macroscopically and microscopically. The specimens were also evaluated for their mechanical and biochemical properties. Furthermore, if TMJ arthritic changes were present, joint characteristics were described and compared to healthy joints. Five male and 9 female specimens demonstrated macroscopically normal fibrocartilaginous articular surfaces and fibrous discs in the TMJ. Out of the 9 female specimens, 4 specimens had TMJ lesions were seen either in the articular surface or the disc. Histologically, these pathologic specimens demonstrated subchondral bone defects, cartilage irregularities and inflammatory cell infiltrates. The normal TMJ discs did not exhibit significant direction dependence in tensile stiffness or strength in the rostrocaudal direction compared with the mediolateral direction among normal discs or discs from affected joints. The TMJ discs were not found to be anisotropic in tensile properties. This feature was further supported by randomly oriented collagen fibres as seen by electron microscopy. Furthermore, no significant differences were detected in biochemical composition of the discs dependent upon population. The TMJ and its disc of the California sea lion exhibit similarities but also differences compared to other mammals with regards to structure-function relationships. A fibrous TMJ disc rich in collagen with minimal glycosaminoglycan content was characterised, and random fibre organisation was associated with isotropic mechanical properties in the central region of the disc. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Drag, but not buoyancy, affects swim speed in captive Steller sea lions

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    Ippei Suzuki

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Swimming at an optimal speed is critical for breath-hold divers seeking to maximize the time they can spend foraging underwater. Theoretical studies have predicted that the optimal swim speed for an animal while transiting to and from depth is independent of buoyancy, but is dependent on drag and metabolic rate. However, this prediction has never been experimentally tested. Our study assessed the effects of buoyancy and drag on the swim speed of three captive Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus that made 186 dives. Our study animals were trained to dive to feed at fixed depths (10–50 m under artificially controlled buoyancy and drag conditions. Buoyancy and drag were manipulated using a pair of polyvinyl chloride (PVC tubes attached to harnesses worn by the sea lions, and buoyancy conditions were designed to fall within the natural range of wild animals (∼12–26% subcutaneous fat. Drag conditions were changed with and without the PVC tubes, and swim speeds were recorded and compared during descent and ascent phases using an accelerometer attached to the harnesses. Generalized linear mixed-effect models with the animal as the random variable and five explanatory variables (body mass, buoyancy, dive depth, dive phase, and drag showed that swim speed was best predicted by two variables, drag and dive phase (AIC = −139. Consistent with a previous theoretical prediction, the results of our study suggest that the optimal swim speed of Steller sea lions is a function of drag, and is independent of dive depth and buoyancy.

  4. Effects of age, colony, and sex on mercury concentrations in California sea lions

    Science.gov (United States)

    McHuron, Elizibeth A; Peterson, Sarah H.; Ackerman, Josh; Melin, Sharon R.; Harris, Jeffrey D.; Costa, Daniel P.

    2016-01-01

    We measured total mercury (THg) concentrations in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) and examined how concentrations varied with age class, colony, and sex. Because Hg exposure is primarily via diet, we used nitrogen (δ 15N) and carbon (δ 13C) stable isotopes to determine if intraspecific differences in THg concentrations could be explained by feeding ecology. Blood and hair were collected from 21 adult females and 57 juveniles from three colonies in central and southern California (San Nicolas, San Miguel, and Año Nuevo Islands). Total Hg concentrations ranged from 0.01 to 0.31 μg g−1 wet weight (ww) in blood and 0.74 to 21.00 μg g−1 dry weight (dw) in hair. Adult females had greater mean THg concentrations than juveniles in blood (0.15 vs. 0.03 μg−1 ww) and hair (10.10 vs. 3.25 μg−1 dw). Age class differences in THg concentrations did not appear to be driven by trophic level or habitat type because there were no differences in δ 15N or δ 13C values between adults and juveniles. Total Hg concentrations in adult females were 54 % (blood) and 24 % (hair) greater in females from San Miguel than females from San Nicolas Island, which may have been because sea lions from the two islands foraged in different areas. For juveniles, we detected some differences in THg concentrations with colony and sex, although these were likely due to sampling effects and not ecological differences. Overall, THg concentrations in California sea lions were within the range documented for other marine mammals and were generally below toxicity benchmarks for fish-eating wildlife.

  5. Diagnosis and treatment of Sarcocystis neurona-induced myositis in a free-ranging California sea lion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlson-Bremer, Daphne P; Gulland, Frances M D; Johnson, Christine K; Colegrove, Kathleen M; Van Bonn, William G

    2012-02-01

    An underweight, lethargic adult female California sea lion (Zalophus californianus) became stranded along the California shore and was captured and transported to a rehabilitation hospital for assessment and care. Initial physical assessment revealed the sea lion was lethargic and in poor body condition. Active myositis was diagnosed on the basis of concurrent elevations in activities of alanine aminotransferase and creatine kinase detected during serum biochemical analysis. Infection with Sarcocystis neurona was diagnosed after serologic titers increased 4-fold over a 3-week period. Diagnosis was confirmed on the basis of histopathologic findings, positive results on immunohistochemical staining, and results of quantitative PCR assay on biopsy specimens obtained from the diaphragm and muscles of the dorsal cervical region. Anticoccidial treatment was instituted with ponazuril (10 mg/kg [4.5 mg/lb], PO, q 24 h) and continued for 28 days. Prednisone (0.2 mg/kg [0.09 mg/lb], PO, q 12 h) was administered for 2 days and then every 24 hours for 5 days to treat associated inflammation. At the end of treatment, the sea lion was clinically normal, alanine aminotransferase and creatine kinase values were within reference limits, and antibody titers against S neurona had decreased 6-fold. The sea lion was released approximately 3 months after becoming stranded. S neurona-induced myositis was diagnosed in a free-ranging California sea lion. On the basis of the successful treatment and release of this sea lion, anticoccidial treatment should be considered for marine mammals in which protozoal disease is diagnosed.

  6. Giardia duodenalis and Cryptosporidium occurrence in Australian sea lions (Neophoca cinerea exposed to varied levels of human interaction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tiffany C. Delport

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Giardia and Cryptosporidium are amongst the most common protozoan parasites identified as causing enteric disease in pinnipeds. A number of Giardia assemblages and Cryptosporidium species and genotypes are common in humans and terrestrial mammals and have also been identified in marine mammals. To investigate the occurrence of these parasites in an endangered marine mammal, the Australian sea lion (Neophoca cinerea, genomic DNA was extracted from faecal samples collected from wild populations (n = 271 in Southern and Western Australia and three Australian captive populations (n = 19. These were screened using PCR targeting the 18S rRNA of Giardia and Cryptosporidium. Giardia duodenalis was detected in 28 wild sea lions and in seven captive individuals. Successful sequencing of the 18S rRNA gene assigned 27 Giardia isolates to assemblage B and one to assemblage A, both assemblages commonly found in humans. Subsequent screening at the gdh and β-giardin loci resulted in amplification of only one of the 35 18S rRNA positive samples at the β-giardin locus. Sequencing at the β-giardin locus assigned the assemblage B 18S rRNA confirmed isolate to assemblage AI. The geographic distribution of sea lion populations sampled in relation to human settlements indicated that Giardia presence in sea lions was highest in populations less than 25 km from humans. Cryptosporidium was not detected by PCR screening in either wild colonies or captive sea lion populations. These data suggest that the presence of G. duodenalis in the endangered Australian sea lion is likely the result of dispersal from human sources. Multilocus molecular analyses are essential for the determination of G. duodenalis assemblages and subsequent inferences on transmission routes to endangered marine mammal populations.

  7. Sesavirus: prototype of a new parvovirus genus in feces of a sea lion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phan, Tung Gia; Gulland, Frances; Simeone, Claire; Deng, Xutao; Delwart, Eric

    2015-02-01

    We describe the nearly complete genome of a highly divergent parvovirus, we tentatively name Sesavirus, from the feces of a California sea lion pup (Zalophus californianus) suffering from malnutrition and pneumonia. The 5,049-base-long genome contained two major ORFs encoding a 553-aa nonstructural protein and a 965-aa structural protein which shared closest amino acid identities of 25 and 28 %, respectively, with members of the copiparvovirus genus known to infect pigs and cows. Given the low degree of similarity, Sesavirus might be considered as prototype for a new genus with a proposed name of Marinoparvovirus in the subfamily Parvovirinae.

  8. Ovarian interstitial cell tumor in a South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biancani, Barbara; Lacave, Geraldine; Magi, Gian Enrico; Rossi, Giacomo

    2010-07-01

    A case of an ovarian tumor is reported in an 8-yr-old South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens) kept in a marine park in Malta (35.57 degrees N, 14.25 degrees E). The neoplasm was a solid mass of dense sheets and nests of round to polyhedral, irregularly shaped cells with abundant, finely vacuolated cytoplasm. The nuclei were uniformly small and round to oval. The supporting stroma contained thecal cells. The tumor cells were positive for positive inhibin and vimentin and focally positive for cytokeratin by immunohistochemistry. The neoplasm was diagnosed as an ovarian sex cord-stromal tumor, specifically an interstitial cell tumor.

  9. Improving sea level simulation in Mediterranean regional climate models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adloff, Fanny; Jordà, Gabriel; Somot, Samuel; Sevault, Florence; Arsouze, Thomas; Meyssignac, Benoit; Li, Laurent; Planton, Serge

    2017-08-01

    For now, the question about future sea level change in the Mediterranean remains a challenge. Previous climate modelling attempts to estimate future sea level change in the Mediterranean did not meet a consensus. The low resolution of CMIP-type models prevents an accurate representation of important small scales processes acting over the Mediterranean region. For this reason among others, the use of high resolution regional ocean modelling has been recommended in literature to address the question of ongoing and future Mediterranean sea level change in response to climate change or greenhouse gases emissions. Also, it has been shown that east Atlantic sea level variability is the dominant driver of the Mediterranean variability at interannual and interdecadal scales. However, up to now, long-term regional simulations of the Mediterranean Sea do not integrate the full sea level information from the Atlantic, which is a substantial shortcoming when analysing Mediterranean sea level response. In the present study we analyse different approaches followed by state-of-the-art regional climate models to simulate Mediterranean sea level variability. Additionally we present a new simulation which incorporates improved information of Atlantic sea level forcing at the lateral boundary. We evaluate the skills of the different simulations in the frame of long-term hindcast simulations spanning from 1980 to 2012 analysing sea level variability from seasonal to multidecadal scales. Results from the new simulation show a substantial improvement in the modelled Mediterranean sea level signal. This confirms that Mediterranean mean sea level is strongly influenced by the Atlantic conditions, and thus suggests that the quality of the information in the lateral boundary conditions (LBCs) is crucial for the good modelling of Mediterranean sea level. We also found that the regional differences inside the basin, that are induced by circulation changes, are model-dependent and thus not

  10. Is the distribution of Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus ecotypes in the Mediterranean Sea affected by global warming?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mella-Flores, D.; Mazard, S.; Humily, F.; Partensky, F.; Mahé, F.; Bariat, L.; Courties, C.; Marie, D.; Ras, J.; Mauriac, R.; Jeanthon, C.; Mahdi Bendif, E.; Ostrowski, M.; Scanlan, D. J.; Garczarek, L.

    2011-09-01

    Biological communities populating the Mediterranean Sea, which is situated at the northern boundary of the subtropics, are often claimed to be particularly affected by global warming. This is indicated, for instance, by the introduction of (sub)tropical species of fish or invertebrates that can displace local species. This raises the question of whether microbial communities are similarly affected, especially in the Levantine basin where sea surface temperatures have significantly risen over the last 25 years (0.50 ± 0.11 °C in average per decade, P libraries of the 16S-23S ribosomal DNA Internal Transcribed Spacer (ITS) region, with a focus on the abundance of clades that may constitute bioindicators of warm waters. During both cruises, the dominant Prochlorococcus clade in the upper mixed layer at all stations was HLI, a clade typical of temperate waters, whereas the HLII clade, the dominant group in (sub)tropical waters, was only present at very low concentrations. The Synechococcus community was dominated by clades I, III and IV in the northwestern waters of the Gulf of Lions and by clade III and groups genetically related to clades WPC1 and VI in the rest of the Mediterranean Sea. In contrast, only a few sequences of clade II, a group typical of warm waters, were observed. These data indicate that local cyanobacterial populations have not yet been displaced by their (sub)tropical counterparts.

  11. Behavioral responses of California sea lions to mid-frequency (3250-3450 Hz) sonar signals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Houser, Dorian S; Martin, Stephen W; Finneran, James J

    2013-12-01

    Military sonar has the potential to negatively impact marine mammals. To investigate factors affecting behavioral disruption in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus), fifteen sea lions participated in a controlled exposure study using a simulated tactical sonar signal (1 s duration, 3250-3450 Hz) as a stimulus. Subjects were placed into groups of three and each group received a stimulus exposure of 125, 140, 155, 170, or 185 dB re: 1 μPa (rms). Each subject was trained to swim across an enclosure, touch a paddle, and return to the start location. Sound exposures occurred at the mid-point of the enclosure. Control and exposure sessions were run consecutively and each consisted of ten, 30-s trials. The occurrence and severity of behavioral responses were used to create acoustic dose-response and dose-severity functions. Age of the subject significantly affected the dose-response relationship, but not the dose-severity relationship. Repetitive exposures did not affect the dose-response relationship.

  12. Auditory detection of ultrasonic coded transmitters by seals and sea lions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cunningham, Kane A; Hayes, Sean A; Michelle Wargo Rub, A; Reichmuth, Colleen

    2014-04-01

    Ultrasonic coded transmitters (UCTs) are high-frequency acoustic tags that are often used to conduct survivorship studies of vulnerable fish species. Recent observations of differential mortality in tag control studies suggest that fish instrumented with UCTs may be selectively targeted by marine mammal predators, thereby skewing valuable survivorship data. In order to better understand the ability of pinnipeds to detect UCT outputs, behavioral high-frequency hearing thresholds were obtained from a trained harbor seal (Phoca vitulina) and a trained California sea lion (Zalophus californianus). Thresholds were measured for extended (500 ms) and brief (10 ms) 69 kHz narrowband stimuli, as well as for a stimulus recorded directly from a Vemco V16-3H UCT, which consisted of eight 10 ms, 69 kHz pure-tone pulses. Detection thresholds for the harbor seal were as expected based on existing audiometric data for this species, while the California sea lion was much more sensitive than predicted. Given measured detection thresholds of 113 dB re 1 μPa and 124 dB re 1 μPa, respectively, both species are likely able to detect acoustic outputs of the Vemco V16-3H under water from distances exceeding 200 m in typical natural conditions, suggesting that these species are capable of using UCTs to detect free-ranging fish.

  13. Diversity of MHC DQB and DRB Genes in the Endangered Australian Sea Lion (Neophoca cinerea).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lau, Quintin; Chow, Natalie; Gray, Rachael; Gongora, Jaime; Higgins, Damien P

    2015-01-01

    Major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II molecules have an important role in vertebrate adaptive immunity, being responsible for recognizing, binding, and presenting specific antigenic peptides to T lymphocytes. Here, we study the MHC class II DQB and DRB exon 2 genes of the Australian sea lion (Neophoca cinerea), an endangered pinniped species that experiences high pup mortality. Following characterization of N. cinerea DQB and DRB by molecular cloning, and evaluation of diversity in pups across 2 colonies using variant screening (n = 47), 3 DQB alleles and 10 DRB variants (including 1 pseudogene allele) were identified. The higher diversity at DRB relative to DQB is consistent with other studies in marine mammals. Despite overall lower MHC class II allelic diversity relative to some other pinniped species, we observed similar levels of nucleotide diversity and selection in N. cinerea. In addition, we provide support for recent divergence of MHC class II alleles. The characterization of MHC class II diversity in the Australian sea lion establishes a baseline for further investigation of associations with disease, including endemic hookworm infection, and contributes to the conservation management of this species.

  14. Predictive Habitat Use of California Sea Lions and Its Implications for Fisheries Management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Briscoe, D.

    2016-12-01

    Advancements in satellite telemetry and remotely-sensed oceanography have shown that species and the environment they utilize are highly dynamic in space and time. However, biophysical features often overlap with human use. For this reason, spatially-explicit management approaches may only provide a snapshot of protection for a highly mobile species throughout its range. As a migratory species, California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) utilize dynamic oceanographic features that overlap with the California swordfish fishery, and are subject to incidental catch. The development of near-real time tools can assist in management efforts to mitigate against human impacts, such as fisheries interactions and dynamic marine species. Here, we combine near-real time remotely-sensed satellite oceanography, animal tracking data, and Generalized Additive Mixed Models (GAMMs) to: a) determine suitable habitat for 75 female California sea lions throughout their range, b) forecast when and where these non-target interactions are likely to occur, and c) validate these models with observed data of such interactions. Model results can be used to provide resource management that are highly responsive to the movement of managed species, ocean users, and underlying ocean features.

  15. Anthropozoonotic Endoparasites in Free-Ranging "Urban" South American Sea Lions (Otaria flavescens).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hermosilla, Carlos; Silva, Liliana M R; Navarro, Mauricio; Taubert, Anja

    2016-01-01

    The present study represents the first report on the gastrointestinal endoparasite fauna of a free-ranging "urban" colony of South American sea lions (Otaria flavescens) living within the city of Valdivia, Chile. A total of 40 individual faecal samples of South American sea lions were collected during the year 2012 within their natural habitat along the river Calle-Calle and in the local fish market of Valdivia. Coprological analyses applying sodium acetate acetic formalin methanol (SAF) technique, carbol fuchsin-stained faecal smears and Giardia/Cryptosporidium coproantigen ELISAs, revealed infections with 8 different parasites belonging to protozoan and metazoan taxa with some of them bearing anthropozoonotic potential. Thus, five of these parasites were zoonotic (Diphyllobothriidae gen. sp., Anisakidae gen. sp., Giardia, Cryptosporidium, and Balantidium). Overall, these parasitological findings included four new parasite records for Otaria flavescens, that is, Giardia, Cryptosporidium, Balantidium, and Otostrongylus. The current data serve as a baseline for future monitoring studies on anthropozoonotic parasites circulating in these marine mammals and their potential impact on public health.

  16. Occupancy dynamics of South American sea-lions in Brazilian haul-outs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavanato, H; Silva, K G; Estima, S C; Monteiro, D S; Kinas, P G

    2013-11-01

    Along the Brazilian coast only two haul-outs of South American sea lions (Otaria flavescens) are known: Ilha dos Lobos and Molhe Leste, both located in the southernmost state of Brazil, Rio Grande do Sul. Most sea lions observed in these haul-outs are adult and sub-adult males. It is supposed that the species' presence in these areas is due to food supply and absence of parental assistance by males. This study analysed the use of these haul-outs by O. flavescens between 1993 and 2002 based on counting data of observed individuals. Bayesian generalised linear mixed models were used to evaluate differences in abundance between areas, long term trends and seasonal patterns. Results showed that for O. flavescens abundance had a long term trend of increased average occupancy over the study period, with seasonal variation reaching the highest within-year value in August (Ilha dos Lobos) and October (Molhe Leste). The novel application of this powerful statistical modelling approach resulted in a useful tool to quantify occupancy dynamic.

  17. Occupancy dynamics of South American Sea-Lions in Brazilian Haul-outs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Pavanato

    Full Text Available Along the Brazilian coast only two haul-outs of South American sea lions (Otaria flavescens are known: Ilha dos Lobos and Molhe Leste, both located in the southernmost state of Brazil, Rio Grande do Sul. Most sea lions observed in these haul-outs are adult and sub-adult males. It is supposed that the species' presence in these areas is due to food supply and absence of parental assistance by males. This study analysed the use of these haul-outs by O. flavescens between 1993 and 2002 based on counting data of observed individuals. Bayesian generalised linear mixed models were used to evaluate differences in abundance between areas, long term trends and seasonal patterns. Results showed that for O. flavescens abundance had a long term trend of increased average occupancy over the study period, with seasonal variation reaching the highest within-year value in August (Ilha dos Lobos and October (Molhe Leste. The novel application of this powerful statistical modelling approach resulted in a useful tool to quantify occupancy dynamic.

  18. Computed tomographic examination of South American sea lions (Otaria flavescens) with suspected Mycobacterium pinnipedii infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jurczynski, K; Scharpegge, J; Ley-Zaporozhan, J; Ley, S; Cracknell, J; Lyashchenko, K; Greenwald, R; Schenk, J P

    2011-12-03

    Ten South American sea lions (Otaria flavescens) were presented for clinical evaluation and diagnosis of tuberculosis following known exposure to Mycobacterium pinnipedii. CT was used to determine whether foci of calcification in mediastinal lymph nodes, typically associated with pinniped tuberculosis, could be detected and whether CT was a useful diagnostic modality, in conjunction with other tests, for the diagnosis of tuberculosis in this species. Blood was collected from the caudal gluteal vein of each animal for serological testing using commercially available serological tests (ElephantTB STAT-PAK and DPP Vet; Chembio Diagnostic Systems) and a multiantigen print immunoassay (MAPIA), carried out at Chembio to verify the in-house kits. In four of nine animals that underwent CT scanning, lesions consistent with pinniped tuberculosis were apparent and these were confirmed at subsequent postmortem examination. The five remaining animals did not show any abnormalities on CT, with three being negative on serological tests, which were considered to be normal and potentially used as reference images for healthy sea lions. One animal could not be CT scanned due to its large size and weight (510 kg).

  19. Mitochondrial control region haplotypes of the South American sea lion Otaria flavescens (Shaw, 1800

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L.O. Artico

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available The South American sea lion, Otaria flavescens, is widely distributed along the Pacific and Atlantic coasts of South America. However, along the Brazilian coast, there are only two nonbreeding sites for the species (Refúgio de Vida Silvestre da Ilha dos Lobos and Refúgio de Vida Silvestre do Molhe Leste da Barra do Rio Grande, both in Southern Brazil. In this region, the species is continuously under the effect of anthropic activities, mainly those related to environmental contamination with organic and inorganic chemicals and fishery interactions. This paper reports, for the first time, the genetic diversity of O. flavescens found along the Southern Brazilian coast. A 287-bp fragment of the mitochondrial DNA control region (D-loop was analyzed. Seven novel haplotypes were found in 56 individuals (OFA1-OFA7, with OFA1 being the most frequent (47.54%. Nucleotide diversity was moderate (π = 0.62% and haplotype diversity was relatively low (67%. Furthermore, the median joining network analysis indicated that Brazilian haplotypes formed a reciprocal monophyletic clade when compared to the haplotypes from the Peruvian population on the Pacific coast. These two populations do not share haplotypes and may have become isolated some time back. Further genetic studies covering the entire species distribution are necessary to better understand the biological implications of the results reported here for the management and conservation of South American sea lions.

  20. Anthropozoonotic Endoparasites in Free-Ranging “Urban” South American Sea Lions (Otaria flavescens)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva, Liliana M. R.; Navarro, Mauricio; Taubert, Anja

    2016-01-01

    The present study represents the first report on the gastrointestinal endoparasite fauna of a free-ranging “urban” colony of South American sea lions (Otaria flavescens) living within the city of Valdivia, Chile. A total of 40 individual faecal samples of South American sea lions were collected during the year 2012 within their natural habitat along the river Calle-Calle and in the local fish market of Valdivia. Coprological analyses applying sodium acetate acetic formalin methanol (SAF) technique, carbol fuchsin-stained faecal smears and Giardia/Cryptosporidium coproantigen ELISAs, revealed infections with 8 different parasites belonging to protozoan and metazoan taxa with some of them bearing anthropozoonotic potential. Thus, five of these parasites were zoonotic (Diphyllobothriidae gen. sp., Anisakidae gen. sp., Giardia, Cryptosporidium, and Balantidium). Overall, these parasitological findings included four new parasite records for Otaria flavescens, that is, Giardia, Cryptosporidium, Balantidium, and Otostrongylus. The current data serve as a baseline for future monitoring studies on anthropozoonotic parasites circulating in these marine mammals and their potential impact on public health. PMID:27051860

  1. Mitochondrial control region haplotypes of the South American sea lion Otaria flavescens (Shaw, 1800).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Artico, L O; Bianchini, A; Grubel, K S; Monteiro, D S; Estima, S C; Oliveira, L R de; Bonatto, S L; Marins, L F

    2010-09-01

    The South American sea lion, Otaria flavescens, is widely distributed along the Pacific and Atlantic coasts of South America. However, along the Brazilian coast, there are only two nonbreeding sites for the species (Refúgio de Vida Silvestre da Ilha dos Lobos and Refúgio de Vida Silvestre do Molhe Leste da Barra do Rio Grande), both in Southern Brazil. In this region, the species is continuously under the effect of anthropic activities, mainly those related to environmental contamination with organic and inorganic chemicals and fishery interactions. This paper reports, for the first time, the genetic diversity of O. flavescens found along the Southern Brazilian coast. A 287-bp fragment of the mitochondrial DNA control region (D-loop) was analyzed. Seven novel haplotypes were found in 56 individuals (OFA1-OFA7), with OFA1 being the most frequent (47.54%). Nucleotide diversity was moderate (π = 0.62%) and haplotype diversity was relatively low (67%). Furthermore, the median joining network analysis indicated that Brazilian haplotypes formed a reciprocal monophyletic clade when compared to the haplotypes from the Peruvian population on the Pacific coast. These two populations do not share haplotypes and may have become isolated some time back. Further genetic studies covering the entire species distribution are necessary to better understand the biological implications of the results reported here for the management and conservation of South American sea lions.

  2. Anthropozoonotic Endoparasites in Free-Ranging “Urban” South American Sea Lions (Otaria flavescens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Hermosilla

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The present study represents the first report on the gastrointestinal endoparasite fauna of a free-ranging “urban” colony of South American sea lions (Otaria flavescens living within the city of Valdivia, Chile. A total of 40 individual faecal samples of South American sea lions were collected during the year 2012 within their natural habitat along the river Calle-Calle and in the local fish market of Valdivia. Coprological analyses applying sodium acetate acetic formalin methanol (SAF technique, carbol fuchsin-stained faecal smears and Giardia/Cryptosporidium coproantigen ELISAs, revealed infections with 8 different parasites belonging to protozoan and metazoan taxa with some of them bearing anthropozoonotic potential. Thus, five of these parasites were zoonotic (Diphyllobothriidae gen. sp., Anisakidae gen. sp., Giardia, Cryptosporidium, and Balantidium. Overall, these parasitological findings included four new parasite records for Otaria flavescens, that is, Giardia, Cryptosporidium, Balantidium, and Otostrongylus. The current data serve as a baseline for future monitoring studies on anthropozoonotic parasites circulating in these marine mammals and their potential impact on public health.

  3. Complete genome sequence of the San Miguel sea lion virus-8 reveals that it is not a member of the vesicular exanthema of swine virus/San Miguel Sea Lion virus species of the Caliciviridae

    Science.gov (United States)

    The complete genome sequence of the San Miguel sea lion virus-8 (SMSV-8) was determined. Comparison of this sequence to other calicivirus sequences in GenBank showed that this virus was genetically distinct from the VESV/SMSV viruses and belonged to a novel clade within the Vesivirus genus....

  4. Post-Mortem DTI Reveals Altered Hippocampal Connectivity in Wild Sea Lions Diagnosed with Chronic Toxicosis from Algal Exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, Peter F; Berns, Gregory S; Colegrove, Kathleen; Johnson, Shawn; Gulland, Frances

    2017-09-05

    Hundreds of wild California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) exposed to the algal neurotoxin domoic acid are treated in veterinary rehabilitation centers each year. Common chronic effects of toxic exposure in these animals are seizures and hippocampal damage, and they have been proposed as a natural animal model for human epilepsy. Humans with medial temporal lobe epilepsy present with white matter pathology in a number of tracts including the fornix and increased structural connectivity between the hippocampus and thalamus. However, there are no prior data on structural connectivity in sea lion brains, with or without neuropathology. In the present study, we used a novel diffusion tensor imaging technique to obtain high resolution (1mm isotropic) white matter maps in brains obtained opportunistically post-mortem from wild sea lions with and without chronic clinical signs of toxic exposure to domoic acid. All animals had received a full veterinary workup and diagnosis prior to euthanasia. We measured hippocampal atrophy morphometrically, and all brains were examined histopathologically. In animals diagnosed with chronic domoic acid toxicosis, the fornix showed signs of altered diffusion properties indicative of pathology; these brains also had increased structural connectivity between hippocampus and thalamus in comparison to brains from animals with no neurological signs. These findings establish further parallels between human medial temporal lobe epilepsy and a naturally occurring condition in wild sea lions and simultaneously advance general knowledge of the deleterious effects of an increasingly common natural toxin. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  5. Cyclone contribution to the Mediterranean Sea water budget

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flaounas, E.; Di Luca, A.; Drobinski, P.; Mailler, S.; Arsouze, T.; Bastin, S.; Beranger, K.; Lebeaupin Brossier, C.

    2016-02-01

    This paper analyzes the impact of cyclones to the atmospheric components on the Mediterranean Sea Water Budget, namely the cyclones contribution to precipitation and evaporation over the Mediterranean Sea. Three regional simulations were performed with the WRF model for the period 1989-2008. The model was run (1) as a standalone model, (2) coupled with the oceanic model NEMO-MED12 and (3) forced by the smoothed Sea Surface Temperature (SST) fields from the second simulation. Cyclones were tracked in all simulations, and their contribution to the total rainfall and evaporation was quantified. Results show that cyclones are mainly associated with extreme precipitation, representing more than 50 % of the annual rainfall over the Mediterranean Sea. On the other hand, we found that cyclone-induced evaporation represents only a small fraction of the annual total, except in winter, when the most intense Mediterranean cyclones take place. Despite the significant contribution of cyclones to rainfall, our results show that there is a balance between cyclone-induced rainfall and evaporation, suggesting a weak net impact of cyclones on the Mediterranean Sea water budget. The sensitivity of our results with respect to rapid SST changes during the development of cyclones was also investigated. Both rainfall and evaporation are affected in correlation with the SST response to the atmosphere. In fact, air feedbacks to the Mediterranean Sea during the cyclones occurrence were shown to cool down the SST and consequently to reduce rainfall and evaporation at the proximity of cyclone centers.

  6. Simulation and analysis of the mesoscale circulation in the northwestern Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. Echevin

    Full Text Available The large-scale and mesoscale circulation of the northwestern Mediterranean Sea are simulated with an eddy-resolving primitive-equation regional model (RM of 1/16° resolution embedded in a general circulation model (GM of the Mediterranean Sea of 1/8° resolution. The RM is forced by a monthly climatology of heat fluxes, precipitation and wind stress. The GM, which uses the same atmospheric forcing, provides initial and boundary conditions for the RM. Analysis of the RM results shows that several realistic features of the large-scale and mesoscale circulation are evident in this region. The mean cyclonic circulation is in good agreement with observations. Mesoscale variability is intense along the coasts of Sardinia and Corsica, in the Gulf of Lions and in the Catalan Sea. The length scales of the Northern Current meanders along the Provence coast and in the Gulf of Lions’ shelf are in good agreement with observations. Winter Intermediate Water is formed along most of the north-coast shelves, between the Gulf of Genoa and Cape Creus. Advection of this water by the mean cyclonic circulation generates a complex eddy field in the Catalan Sea. Intense anticyclonic eddies are generated northeast of the Balearic Islands. These results are in good agreement with mesoscale activity inferred from satellite altimetric data. This work demonstrates the feasibility of a down-scaling system composed of a general-circulation, a regional and a coastal model, which is one of the goals of the Mediterranean Forecasting System Pilot Project.

    Key words. Oceanography: physical (currents; eddies and mesoscale processes; general circulation

  7. Is the distribution of Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus ecotypes in the Mediterranean Sea affected by global warming?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Ostrowski

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Biological communities populating the Mediterranean Sea, which is situated at the northern boundary of the subtropics, are often claimed to be particularly affected by global warming. This is indicated, for instance, by the introduction of (subtropical species of fish or invertebrates that can displace local species. This raises the question of whether microbial communities are similarly affected, especially in the Levantine basin where sea surface temperatures have significantly risen over the last 25 years (0.50 ± 0.11 °C in average per decade, P Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus, was examined during two cruises through both eastern and western Mediterranean Sea basins held in September 1999 (PROSOPE cruise and in June–July 2008 (BOUM cruise. Diversity was studied using dot blot hybridization with clade-specific 16S rRNA oligonucleotide probes and/or clone libraries of the 16S-23S ribosomal DNA Internal Transcribed Spacer (ITS region, with a focus on the abundance of clades that may constitute bioindicators of warm waters. During both cruises, the dominant Prochlorococcus clade in the upper mixed layer at all stations was HLI, a clade typical of temperate waters, whereas the HLII clade, the dominant group in (subtropical waters, was only present at very low concentrations. The Synechococcus community was dominated by clades I, III and IV in the northwestern waters of the Gulf of Lions and by clade III and groups genetically related to clades WPC1 and VI in the rest of the Mediterranean Sea. In contrast, only a few sequences of clade II, a group typical of warm waters, were observed. These data indicate that local cyanobacterial populations have not yet been displaced by their (subtropical counterparts.

  8. Presence of Marphysa disjuncta (Polychaeta: Eunicidae in the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. KURT SAHIN

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available An individual belonging to the eunicid polychaete species Marphysa disjuncta Hartman, 1961 was collected on muddy substratum at 100 m deep in Fethiye Bay (Levantine Sea, eastern Mediterranean. This species is new to the Mediterranean fauna. It closely resembles to Marphysa bellii, a native species, but it lacks compound falcigers and has unidentate subacicular hooks. This species was only reported from the eastern and western Pacific Ocean and could have been introduced to the Mediterranean Sea via ballast waters of vessels.

  9. Stable Isotopes Reveal Long-Term Fidelity to Foraging Grounds in the Galapagos Sea Lion (Zalophus wollebaeki)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drago, Massimiliano; Franco-Trecu, Valentina; Cardona, Luis; Inchausti, Pablo; Tapia, Washington; Páez-Rosas, Diego

    2016-01-01

    Most otariids have colony-specific foraging areas during the breeding season, when they behave as central place foragers. However, they may disperse over broad areas after the breeding season and individuals from different colonies may share foraging grounds at that time. Here, stable isotope ratios in the skull bone of adult Galapagos sea lions (Zalophus wollebaeki) were used to assess the long-term fidelity of both sexes to foraging grounds across the different regions of the Galapagos archipelago. Results indicated that the stable isotope ratios (δ13C and δ15N) of sea lion bone significantly differed among regions of the archipelago, without any significant difference between sexes and with a non significant interaction between sex and region. Moreover, standard ellipses, estimated by Bayesian inference and used as a measure of the isotopic resource use area at the population level, overlapped widely for the sea lions from the southern and central regions, whereas the overlap of the ellipses for sea lions from the central and western regions was small and non-existing for those from the western and southern regions. These results suggest that males and females from the same region within the archipelago use similar foraging grounds and have similar diets. Furthermore, they indicate that the exchange of adults between regions is limited, thus revealing a certain degree of foraging philopatry at a regional scale within the archipelago. The constraints imposed on males by an expanded reproductive season (~ 6 months), resulting from the weak reproductive synchrony among females, and those imposed on females by a very long lactation period (at least one year but up to three years), may explain the limited mobility of adult Galapagos sea lions of both sexes across the archipelago. PMID:26808381

  10. MOLECULAR DETECTION OF ANTIBIOTIC-RESISTANCE DETERMINANTS IN ESCHERICHIA COLI ISOLATED FROM THE ENDANGERED AUSTRALIAN SEA LION (NEOPHOCA CINEREA).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delport, Tiffany C; Harcourt, Robert G; Beaumont, Linda J; Webster, Koa N; Power, Michelle L

    2015-07-01

    Greater interaction between humans and wildlife populations poses significant risks of anthropogenic impact to natural ecosystems, especially in the marine environment. Understanding the spread of microorganisms at the marine interface is therefore important if we are to mitigate adverse effects on marine wildlife. We investigated the establishment of Escherichia coli in the endangered Australian sea lion (Neophoca cinerea) by comparing fecal isolation from wild and captive sea lion populations. Fecal samples were collected from wild colonies March 2009-September 2010 and from captive individuals March 2011-May 2013. Using molecular screening, we assigned a phylotype to E. coli isolates and determined the presence of integrons, mobile genetic elements that capture gene cassettes conferring resistance to antimicrobial agents common in fecal coliforms. Group B2 was the most abundant phylotype in all E. coli isolates (n = 37), with groups A, B1, and D also identified. Integrons were not observed in E. coli (n = 21) isolated from wild sea lions, but were identified in E. coli from captive animals (n = 16), from which class I integrases were detected in eight isolates. Sequencing of gene cassette arrays identified genes conferring resistance to streptomycin-spectinomycin (aadA1) and trimethoprim (dfrA17, dfrB4). Class II integrases were not detected in the E. coli isolates. The frequent detection in captive sea lions of E. coli with resistance genes commonly identified in human clinical cases suggests that conditions experienced in captivity may contribute to establishment. Identification of antibiotic resistance in the microbiota of Australian sea lions provides crucial information for disease management. Our data will inform conservation management strategies and provide a mechanism to monitor microorganism dissemination to sensitive pinniped populations.

  11. Is the distribution of Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus ecotypes in the Mediterranean Sea affected by global warming?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Ostrowski

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Biological communities populating the Mediterranean Sea, which is situated at the northern boundary of the subtropics, are often claimed to be particularly affected by global warming. This is indicated, for instance, by the introduction of (subtropical species of fish or invertebrates that can displace local species. This raises the question of whether microbial communities are similarly affected, especially in the Levantine basin where sea surface temperatures have risen in recent years. In this paper, the genetic diversity of the two most abundant members of the phytoplankton community, the picocyanobacteria Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus, was examined on a transect from the South coast of France to Cyprus in the summer of 2008 (BOUM cruise. Diversity was studied using dot blot hybridization with clade-specific 16S rRNA oligonucleotide probes and clone libraries of the 16S–23S ribosomal DNA Internal Transcribed Spacer (ITS region. Data were compared with those obtained during the PROSOPE cruise held almost a decade earlier, with a focus on the abundance of clades that may constitute bioindicators of warm waters. During both cruises, the dominant Prochlorococcus clade in the upper mixed layer at all stations was HLI, a clade typical of temperate waters, whereas the HLII clade, the dominant group in (subtropical waters, was only present at very low concentrations. The Synechococcus community was dominated by clades I, III and IV in the northwestern waters of the Gulf of Lions and by clade III and groups genetically related to clades WPC1 and VI in the rest of the Mediterranean Sea. In contrast, only a few sequences of clade II, a group typical of warm waters, were observed. These data indicate that local cyanobacterial populations have not yet been displaced by their (subtropical counterparts. This is discussed in the context of the low phosphorus concentrations found in surface waters in the eastern Mediterranean basin, as this may

  12. Assessment of soft-bottom polychaete assemblages in the Gulf of Lions (NW Mediterranean) based on a mesoscale survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Labrune, Céline; Grémare, Antoine; Amouroux, Jean-Michel; Sardá, Rafael; Gil, João; Taboada, Sergi

    2007-01-01

    Ninety-two stations (10, 20, 30, 40 and 50 m depth) located on 21 inshore-offshore transects between the French-Spanish border and the mouth of the Rhône River were sampled during the 1998 Fall. Their polychaete fauna was analyzed to: (1) describe the distribution pattern of polychaete assemblages at the scale of the whole Gulf of Lions, (2) identify the relationships between these assemblages and the main environmental parameters, (3) establish a link between these assemblages and the benthic communities already described for Northwestern Mediterranean, and (4) assess recent historical changes in trends in densities and α diversity between assemblages. Three polychaete assemblages were identified using cluster analysis and associated procedures. These assemblages were tightly associated with depth and sediment granulometry as indicated by the concordance between their spatial distributions and the sedimentary map of the Gulf of Lions. Assemblage I contained most of the 10 and 20 m deep stations and was associated with littoral fine sands. Assemblage I was found all over the Gulf of Lions and was characterized by high abundance and high biomass due to the presence of large numbers of the serpulid Ditrupa arietina. Assemblage II was mostly composed of 30 m deep stations and was associated with littoral sandy mud. Assemblage II was dominated by the lumbrinerid Lumbrineris latreilli. It was composed of two sub-assemblages (IIa and IIb) in relation with sediment granulometry. Sub-assemblage IIb was associated with finer sediment than sub-assemblage IIa. Sub-assemblage IIa was only found in the Southern part of the Gulf of Lions, whereas sub-assemblage IIb was mostly found in the Northern part of the Gulf of Lions. This pattern is probably indicative of the sedimentation of fine particles originating from the Rhône River at intermediate depth as suggested by: (1) the sedimentary map of the Gulf of Lions, and (2) the outputs of recent models of sediment transport in

  13. A Historical, Cultural and Geoscientific approach of the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varouta, Panagiota

    2017-04-01

    Students' knowledge about geosciences is often limited to their country's geographical elements. The way geosciences are connected to their everyday lives, their history and their culture is something that they do not easily grasp. Thus, the development of a Project-Based Learning activity where 11 year-olds are asked to explore the Mediterranean Sea came as a result. The title of the activity is "An enclosed sea, an open mind, an amazing journey in STEAM". The main purpose of choosing the module of "The Mediterranean" is for the students to become aware of the special natural and cultural features of the Mediterranean region and to be able to connect the Mediterranean's geographical position and characteristics with its historical and social value. The activity aims to develop scientific skills and attitudes, to practice the students' scientific and critical thought, to foster the co-operative spirit among them and to make them aware of how the geography of the Mediterranean affects the relationships that form around it. In this activity, students study geological features (e.g. Orogenesis, Corinthian Rift, Islands, earthquakes, volcanoes), they experiment about the water flow and they examine the Mediterranean field and climate. In Odysseus' footsteps, they navigate using GPS, they research about the culture and the history of the people around the Mediterranean Sea and they present their findings. They focus on the historical, geological, geographical, cultural and environmental aspects of the Mediterranean Sea. On this poster, there will be a presentation of the goals, the methodology, the series of activities and the evaluation of the program. Key Words Mediterranean, Project-Based Learning, Geosciences, Culture

  14. Study of the particulate matter transfer and dumping using {sup 210} Po et le {sup 210} Pb. Application to the Gulf of Biscary (NE Atlantic Ocean) and the Gulf of Lion (NW Mediterranean Sea) continental margins; Etude du transfert et du depot du materiel particulaire par le {sup 210} Po et le {sup 210} Pb. Application aux marges continentales du Golfe de Gascogne (NE Atlantique) et du Golfe du Lion (NW Mediterranee)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Radakovitch, O.

    1995-07-07

    {sup 210} Po and {sup 210} Pb activities and fluxes were measured on seawater, sediment-trapped material collected during one year and sediment. Focalization of {sup 210} Pb is clearly noticed on the Cap-Ferret canyon (Gulf of Biscary) and the Lacaze-Duthiers canyon (western part of the Gulf of Lion). In both sites, {sup 210} Pb fluxes in traps and sediment are always higher than {sup 210} Pb flux available from atmospheric and in situ production. On the contrary, Grand-Rhone canyon and its adjacent open slope exhibit a {sup 210} Pb budget near equilibrium in the near-bottom sediment traps, but focalization is important in the sediment. For the entire Gulf of Lion margin, focalization of {sup 210} Pb in the sediment occurred principally between 500 and 1500 m water depth on the slope, and on the middle shelf mud-patch. {sup 210} Po and {sup 210} Pb have been used in the Cap Ferret and Grand-Rhone canyons to characterize the origin of the particulate trapped material. Two main sources feed the water column. The first source, localized in surface waters, is constituted by biogenic particles from primary production and lithogenic material. The second source, deeper, is due to resuspension at the shelf break and/or on the open slope. In each site, {sup 210} Po and {sup 210} Pb activities of the trapped particles did not show any relations with the major constituents. Quantity of particles appeared to be the main factor regulating adsorption processes of these nuclides. Sedimentation rates based on {sup 210} Po profiles decreased with increasing water depth, from 0.4 ti 0.06 cm y-1 on the Cap Ferret canyon (400 to 3000 m water depth) and from 0.5 to 0.05 cm y-1 for the entire Gulf of Lion margin (50 to 2000 m water depth). (author). 243 refs.

  15. Organochlorine residues in South American sea lions, Otaria flavescens (Shaw, 1800): bioaccumulation and time trends.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borrell, A; Garcia-Solà, A; Aguilar, A; García, N A; Crespo, E A

    2010-06-01

    Blubber from stranded South American sea lions (Otaria flavescens) was sampled between 1991 and 2005 on the Peninsula Valdés in Argentina and analyzed for organochlorine (OC) pollutants. Mean blubber concentrations, expressed on an extractable basis, were 686 (SD = 1,060) ng g(-1) for dichlorodiphenyl trichloroethane (tDDT) and 735 (SD = 787) ng g(-1) for polychlorinated byphenils (PCB). The OC levels were well below those associated with adverse sublethal effects and lethality in mammals. OC concentrations showed statistically significant associations with age that were positive in males and negative in females. These trends are consistent with the majority of marine mammal populations studied. There were no trends in the levels of tDDT or PCB over time. In spite of the low levels detected, OC contamination was present consistently over the 14-year period, suggesting continuous inputs from geographic redistribution.

  16. Adhesive and invasive capacities of Edwarsiella tarda isolated from South American sea lion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández, Araceli; Villanueva, María Paz; González, Mario; Fernández, Fabiola; Latif, Fadua; Flores, Sandra Nonier; Fernández, Heriberto

    2014-01-01

    Edwarsiella tarda is a zoonotic bacterium that can be isolated from humans, animals and the environment. Although E. tarda is primarily considered a fish pathogen, it is the only species of its genus considered to be pathogenic for humans as well. A survey of zoonotic intestinal bacteria in fresh feces from South American sea lions (SASL) Otaria flavescens, reported E. tarda as the most frequently isolated species. In this study, we used HEp-2 cells to establish in vitro the adherence and invasive ability of 17 E. tarda strains isolated from SASL fecal material. All the strains were able to adhere and invade HEp-2 cells with adhesion and invasion percentages ranging from 56 to 100% and 21 to 74%, respectively. Despite the expression of these pathogenic factors, further investigation is needed to determine whether this bacterium could play a role as primary pathogen for this and other species of pinnipeds. PMID:25477948

  17. Adhesive and invasive capacities of Edwardsiella tarda isolated from South American sea lion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández, Araceli; Villanueva, María Paz; González, Mario; Fernández, Fabiola; Latif, Fadua; Flores, Sandra Nonier; Fernández, Heriberto

    2014-01-01

    Edwarsiella tarda is a zoonotic bacterium that can be isolated from humans, animals and the environment. Although E. tarda is primarily considered a fish pathogen, it is the only species of its genus considered to be pathogenic for humans as well. A survey of zoonotic intestinal bacteria in fresh feces from South American sea lions (SASL) Otaria flavescens, reported E. tarda as the most frequently isolated species. In this study, we used HEp-2 cells to establish in vitro the adherence and invasive ability of 17 E. tarda strains isolated from SASL fecal material. All the strains were able to adhere and invade HEp-2 cells with adhesion and invasion percentages ranging from 56 to 100% and 21 to 74%, respectively. Despite the expression of these pathogenic factors, further investigation is needed to determine whether this bacterium could play a role as primary pathogen for this and other species of pinnipeds.

  18. Adhesive and invasive capacities of Edwarsiella tarda isolated from South American sea lion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Araceli Fernández

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Edwarsiella tarda is a zoonotic bacterium that can be isolated from humans, animals and the environment. Although E. tarda is primarily considered a fish pathogen, it is the only species of its genus considered to be pathogenic for humans as well. A survey of zoonotic intestinal bacteria in fresh feces from South American sea lions (SASL Otaria flavescens, reported E. tarda as the most frequently isolated species. In this study, we used HEp-2 cells to establish in vitro the adherence and invasive ability of 17 E. tarda strains isolated from SASL fecal material. All the strains were able to adhere and invade HEp-2 cells with adhesion and invasion percentages ranging from 56 to 100% and 21 to 74%, respectively. Despite the expression of these pathogenic factors, further investigation is needed to determine whether this bacterium could play a role as primary pathogen for this and other species of pinnipeds.

  19. High diving metabolism results in a short aerobic dive limit for Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gerlinsky, Carling D; Rosen, David A S; Trites, Andrew W

    2013-07-01

    The diving capacity of marine mammals is typically defined by the aerobic dive limit (ADL) which, in lieu of direct measurements, can be calculated (cADL) from total body oxygen stores (TBO) and diving metabolic rate (DMR). To estimate cADL, we measured blood oxygen stores, and combined this with diving oxygen consumption rates (VO2) recorded from 4 trained Steller sea lions diving in the open ocean to depths of 10 or 40 m. We also examined the effect of diving exercise on O2 stores by comparing blood O2 stores of our diving animals to non-diving individuals at an aquarium. Mass-specific blood volume of the non-diving individuals was higher in the winter than in summer, but there was no overall difference in blood O2 stores between the diving and non-diving groups. Estimated TBO (35.9 ml O2 kg(-1)) was slightly lower than previously reported for Steller sea lions and other Otariids. Calculated ADL was 3.0 min (based on an average DMR of 2.24 L O2 min(-1)) and was significantly shorter than the average 4.4 min dives our study animals performed when making single long dives-but was similar to the times recorded during diving bouts (a series of 4 dives followed by a recovery period on the surface), as well as the dive times of wild animals. Our study is the first to estimate cADL based on direct measures of VO2 and blood oxygen stores for an Otariid and indicates they have a much shorter ADL than previously thought.

  20. Validating the relationship between 3-dimensional body acceleration and oxygen consumption in trained Steller sea lions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volpov, Beth L; Rosen, David A S; Trites, Andrew W; Arnould, John P Y

    2015-08-01

    We tested the ability of overall dynamic body acceleration (ODBA) to predict the rate of oxygen consumption ([Formula: see text]) in freely diving Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus) while resting at the surface and diving. The trained sea lions executed three dive types-single dives, bouts of multiple long dives with 4-6 dives per bout, or bouts of multiple short dives with 10-12 dives per bout-to depths of 40 m, resulting in a range of activity and oxygen consumption levels. Average metabolic rate (AMR) over the dive cycle or dive bout calculated was calculated from [Formula: see text]. We found that ODBA could statistically predict AMR when data from all dive types were combined, but that dive type was a significant model factor. However, there were no significant linear relationships between AMR and ODBA when data for each dive type were analyzed separately. The potential relationships between AMR and ODBA were not improved by including dive duration, food consumed, proportion of dive cycle spent submerged, or number of dives per bout. It is not clear whether the lack of predictive power within dive type was due to low statistical power, or whether it reflected a true absence of a relationship between ODBA and AMR. The average percent error for predicting AMR from ODBA was 7-11 %, and standard error of the estimated AMR was 5-32 %. Overall, the extensive range of dive behaviors and physiological conditions we tested indicated that ODBA was not suitable for estimating AMR in the field due to considerable error and the inconclusive effects of dive type.

  1. Diving deeper into individual foraging specializations of a large marine predator, the southern sea lion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baylis, A M M; Orben, R A; Arnould, J P Y; Peters, K; Knox, T; Costa, D P; Staniland, I J

    2015-12-01

    Despite global declines in the abundance of marine predators, knowledge of foraging ecology, necessary to predict the ecological consequences of large changes in marine predator abundance, remains enigmatic for many species. Given that populations suffering severe declines are of conservation concern, we examined the foraging ecology of southern sea lions (SSL) (Otaria flavescens)-one of the least studied otariids (fur seal and sea lions)-which have declined by over 90% at the Falkland Islands since the 1930s. Using a combination of biologging devices and stable isotope analysis of vibrissae, we redress major gaps in the knowledge of SSL ecology and quantify patterns of individual specialization. Specifically, we revealed two discrete foraging strategies, these being inshore (coastal) and offshore (outer Patagonian Shelf). The majority of adult female SSL (72% or n = 21 of 29 SSL) foraged offshore. Adult female SSL that foraged offshore travelled further (92 ± 20 vs. 10 ± 4 km) and dived deeper (75 ± 23 vs. 21 ± 8 m) when compared to those that foraged inshore. Stable isotope analysis revealed long-term fidelity (years) to these discrete foraging habitats. In addition, we found further specialization within the offshore group, with adult female SSL separated into two clusters on the basis of benthic or mixed (benthic and pelagic) dive behavior (benthic dive proportion was 76 ± 9 vs. 51 ± 8%, respectively). We suggest that foraging specialization in depleted populations such as SSL breeding at the Falkland Islands, are influenced by foraging site fidelity, and could be independent of intraspecific competition. Finally, the behavioral differences we describe are crucial to understanding population-level dynamics, impediments to population recovery, and threats to population persistence.

  2. Optic nerve, superior colliculus, visual thalamus, and primary visual cortex of the northern elephant seal (Mirounga angustirostris) and California sea lion (Zalophus californianus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, Emily C; Sawyer, Eva K; Kaas, Jon H

    2017-02-11

    The northern elephant seal (Mirounga angustirostris) and California sea lion (Zalophus californianus) are members of a diverse clade of carnivorous mammals known as pinnipeds. Pinnipeds are notable for their large, ape-sized brains, yet little is known about their central nervous system. Both the northern elephant seal and California sea lion spend most of their lives at sea, but each also spends time on land to breed and give birth. These unique coastal niches may be reflected in specific evolutionary adaptations to their sensory systems. Here, we report on components of the visual pathway in these two species. We found evidence for two classes of myelinated fibers within the pinniped optic nerve, those with thick myelin sheaths (elephant seal: 9%, sea lion: 7%) and thin myelin sheaths (elephant seal: 91%, sea lion: 93%). In order to investigate the architecture of the lateral geniculate nucleus, superior colliculus, and primary visual cortex, we processed brain sections from seal and sea lion pups for Nissl substance, cytochrome oxidase, and vesicular glutamate transporters. As in other carnivores, the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus consisted of three main layers, A, A1, and C, while each superior colliculus similarly consisted of seven distinct layers. The sea lion visual cortex is located at the posterior side of cortex between the upper and lower banks of the postlateral sulcus, while the elephant seal visual cortex extends far more anteriorly along the dorsal surface and medial wall. These results are relevant to comparative studies related to the evolution of large brains.

  3. Alaska Steller sea lion pups blood serum chemistry and hematology values measured from 1998-06-01 to 2011-07-15 (NCEI Accession 0137994)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — These data were used for an analysis of Steller sea lion pup health and condition by Lander et al. (2013). Serum chemistry and hematological values were measured by...

  4. Counts of Alaska Steller sea lion pups conducted on rookeries in Alaska from 1961-06-22 to 2015-07-18 (NCEI Accession 0128189)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This database contains counts of Steller sea lion pups on rookeries in Alaska made between 1961 and 2015. Pup counts are conducted in late June-July. Pups are...

  5. AFSC/NMML/CCEP: Characterizing and quantifying California sea lion and Pacific harbor seal use of offshore oil and gas platforms in California, 2013-2015

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) and Pacific harbor seals (Phoca vitulina) use offshore oil and gas platforms as resting and foraging areas. Both...

  6. Capture and resight data of California sea lions in Washington State, 1989-02-15 to 2006-06-01 (NCEI Accession 0146259)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This dataset contains data from the capture and recapture of over 1500 male California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) from Washington between 1989-2006. The data...

  7. The physiology and life-history parameters of reproduction in Steller sea lions, spotted seals and ribbon seals from the coastal waters of Hokkaido

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Tsuyoshi Ishinazaka

    2002-01-01

    .... This study was designed to better understand the physiology and life-history parameters of reproduction in Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus), spotted seals (Phoca largha) and ribbon seals (Phoca fasciata...

  8. AFSC/NMML/CCEP: Hookworm Intensity of Infection in California sea lion and Northern Fur Seal Pups in California, 1996 through 2008

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — There are various causes of mortality for California sea lion (Zalophus californianus) and northern fur seal (Callorhinus ursinus) pups. This dataset contains...

  9. Magnetic resonance imaging quality and volumes of brain structures from live and postmortem imaging of California sea lions with clinical signs of domoic acid toxicosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montie, Eric W; Wheeler, Elizabeth; Pussini, Nicola; Battey, Thomas W K; Barakos, Jerome; Dennison, Sophie; Colegrove, Kathleen; Gulland, Frances

    2010-09-17

    Our goal in this study was to compare magnetic resonance images and volumes of brain structures obtained alive versus postmortem of California sea lions Zalophus californianus exhibiting clinical signs of domoic acid (DA) toxicosis and those exhibiting normal behavior. Proton density-(PD) and T2-weighted images of postmortem-intact brains, up to 48 h after death, provided similar quality to images acquired from live sea lions. Volumes of gray matter (GM) and white matter (WM) of the cerebral hemispheres were similar to volumes calculated from images acquired when the sea lions were alive. However, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) volumes decreased due to leakage. Hippocampal volumes from postmortem-intact images were useful for diagnosing unilateral and bilateral atrophy, consequences of DA toxicosis. These volumes were similar to the volumes in the live sea lion studies, up to 48 h postmortem. Imaging formalin-fixed brains provided some information on brain structure; however, images of the hippocampus and surrounding structures were of poorer quality compared to the images acquired alive and postmortem-intact. Despite these issues, volumes of cerebral GM and WM, as well as the hippocampus, were similar to volumes calculated from images of live sea lions and sufficient to diagnose hippocampal atrophy. Thus, postmortem MRI scanning (either intact or formalin-fixed) with volumetric analysis can be used to investigate the acute, chronic and possible developmental effects of DA on the brain of California sea lions.

  10. Footprints of climate change on Mediterranean Sea biota

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Núria eMarbà

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The Mediterranean Sea ranks among the ocean regions warming fastest. There is evidence for impacts of climate change on marine Mediterranean organisms but a quantitative assessment is lacking. We compiled the impacts of warming reported in the literature to provide a quantitative assessment for the Mediterranean Sea. During the last three decades the summer surface temperature has increased 1.15 oC. Strong heat wave events have occurred in years 1994, 2003 and 2009. Impacts of warming are evident on growth, survival, fertility, migration and phenology of pelagic and benthic organisms, from phytoplankton to marine vegetation, invertebrates and vertebrates. Overall, 50 % of biological impacts in the Mediterranean Sea occur at summer surface temperature anomaly ≤ 4.5 ºC and at summer surface temperature of 27.5 ºC. The activation energy (geometric mean 1.58 ± 0.48 eV, the slope of the Arrhenius equation describing the temperature-dependence of biological processes, for the response of Mediterranean marine biota to warming reveals that these responses in the Mediterranean are far steepest than possibly explained by the direct effect of warming alone. The observations are biased toward the northern and western sectors of the basin, likely underestimating the impacts of warming in areas where warming is particularly intense.

  11. Footprints of climate change on Mediterranean Sea biota

    KAUST Repository

    Marbà, Núria

    2015-08-13

    The Mediterranean Sea ranks among the ocean regions warming fastest. There is evidence for impacts of climate change on marine Mediterranean organisms but a quantitative assessment is lacking. We compiled the impacts of warming reported in the literature to provide a quantitative assessment for the Mediterranean Sea. During the last three decades the summer surface temperature has increased 1.15°C. Strong heat wave events have occurred in years 1994, 2003, and 2009. Impacts of warming are evident on growth, survival, fertility, migration and phenology of pelagic and benthic organisms, from phytoplankton to marine vegetation, invertebrates and vertebrates. Overall, 50% of biological impacts in the Mediterranean Sea occur at summer surface temperature anomaly ≤ 4.5°C and at summer surface temperature of 27.5°C. The activation energy (geometric mean 1.58 ± 0.48 eV), the slope of the Arrhenius equation describing the temperature-dependence of biological processes, for the response of Mediterranean marine biota to warming reveals that these responses in the Mediterranean are far steepest than possibly explained by the direct effect of warming alone. The observations are biased toward the northern and western sectors of the basin, likely underestimating the impacts of warming in areas where warming is particularly intense.

  12. The Mediterranean and Black Sea fisheries at risk from overexploitation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Athanassios C Tsikliras

    Full Text Available The status of the Mediterranean and Black Sea fisheries was evaluated for the period 1970-2010 on a subarea basis, using various indicators including the temporal variability of total landings, the number of recorded stocks, the mean trophic level of the catch, the fishing-in-balance index and the catch-based method of stock classification. All indicators confirmed that the fisheries resources of the Mediterranean and Black Sea are at risk from overexploitation. The pattern of exploitation and the state of stocks differed among the western (W, central (C and eastern (E Mediterranean subareas and the Black Sea (BS, with the E Mediterranean and BS fisheries being in a worst shape. Indeed, in the E Mediterranean and the BS, total landings, mean trophic level of the catch and fishing-in-balance index were declining, the cumulative percentage of overexploited and collapsed stocks was higher, and the percentage of developing stocks was lower, compared to the W and C Mediterranean. Our results confirm the need for detailed and extensive stock assessments across species that will eventually lead to stocks recovering through conservation and management measures.

  13. The Mediterranean and Black Sea Fisheries at Risk from Overexploitation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsikliras, Athanassios C.; Dinouli, Anny; Tsiros, Vasileios-Zikos; Tsalkou, Eleni

    2015-01-01

    The status of the Mediterranean and Black Sea fisheries was evaluated for the period 1970-2010 on a subarea basis, using various indicators including the temporal variability of total landings, the number of recorded stocks, the mean trophic level of the catch, the fishing-in-balance index and the catch-based method of stock classification. All indicators confirmed that the fisheries resources of the Mediterranean and Black Sea are at risk from overexploitation. The pattern of exploitation and the state of stocks differed among the western (W), central (C) and eastern (E) Mediterranean subareas and the Black Sea (BS), with the E Mediterranean and BS fisheries being in a worst shape. Indeed, in the E Mediterranean and the BS, total landings, mean trophic level of the catch and fishing-in-balance index were declining, the cumulative percentage of overexploited and collapsed stocks was higher, and the percentage of developing stocks was lower, compared to the W and C Mediterranean. Our results confirm the need for detailed and extensive stock assessments across species that will eventually lead to stocks recovering through conservation and management measures. PMID:25793975

  14. The Effect of Novel Research Activities on Long-term Survival of Temporarily Captive Steller Sea Lions (Eumetopias jubatus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Courtney Shuert

    Full Text Available Two novel research approaches were developed to facilitate controlled access to, and long-term monitoring of, juvenile Steller sea lions for periods longer than typically afforded by traditional fieldwork. The Transient Juvenile Steller sea lion Project at the Alaska SeaLife Center facilitated nutritional, physiological, and behavioral studies on the platform of temporary captivity. Temporarily captive sea lions (TJs, n = 35 were studied, and were intraperitoneally implanted with Life History Transmitters (LHX tags to determine causes of mortality post-release. Our goal was to evaluate the potential for long-term impacts of temporary captivity and telemetry implants on the survival of study individuals. A simple open-population Cormack-Jolly-Seber mark-recapture model was built in program MARK, incorporating resightings of uniquely branded study individuals gathered by several contributing institutions. A priori models were developed to weigh the evidence of effects of experimental treatment on survival with covariates of sex, age, capture age, cohort, and age class. We compared survival of experimental treatment to a control group of n = 27 free-ranging animals (FRs that were sampled during capture events and immediately released. Sex has previously been show to differentially affect juvenile survival in Steller sea lions. Therefore, sex was included in all models to account for unbalanced sex ratios within the experimental group. Considerable support was identified for the effects of sex, accounting for over 71% of total weight for all a priori models with delta AICc <5, and over 91% of model weight after removal of pretending variables. Overall, most support was found for the most parsimonious model based on sex and excluding experimental treatment. Models including experimental treatment were not supported after post-hoc considerations of model selection criteria. However, given the limited sample size, alternate models including effects of

  15. High nutrient transport and cycling potential revealed in the microbial metagenome of Australian sea lion (Neophoca cinerea faeces.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Trish J Lavery

    Full Text Available Metagenomic analysis was used to examine the taxonomic diversity and metabolic potential of an Australian sea lion (Neophoca cinerea gut microbiome. Bacteria comprised 98% of classifiable sequences and of these matches to Firmicutes (80% were dominant, with Proteobacteria and Actinobacteria representing 8% and 2% of matches respectively. The relative proportion of Firmicutes (80% to Bacteriodetes (2% is similar to that in previous studies of obese humans and obese mice, suggesting the gut microbiome may confer a predisposition towards the excess body fat that is needed for thermoregulation within the cold oceanic habitats foraged by Australian sea lions. Core metabolic functions, including carbohydrate utilisation (14%, protein metabolism (9% and DNA metabolism (7% dominated the metagenome, but in comparison to human and fish gut microbiomes there was a significantly higher proportion of genes involved in phosphorus metabolism (2.4% and iron scavenging mechanisms (1%. When sea lions defecate at sea, the relatively high nutrient metabolism potential of bacteria in their faeces may accelerate the dissolution of nutrients from faecal particles, enhancing their persistence in the euphotic zone where they are available to stimulate marine production.

  16. Comparison of Several Geoid Models over the Western Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Termens, A.; Martinez-Benjamin, J. J.

    2011-07-01

    The Mediterranean Sea is a semi-enclosed true ocean. Recent Mediterranean circulation and sea level studies using various observations and ocean general circulation models show good coherence and agreement. The satellite altimetry and tide gauge observed and model predicted sea level show good coherent with correlation coefficient of 0.6. The barotropic pressure response accounts for about 66% of the Mediterranean sea level rise (1948-2001). The estimated sea level trend (1.54 ± 0.75 mm/yr) using decadal altimetry (1985-2001) after correcting the interannual/decadal signals reconstructed using tide gauge data, agrees well with the long term trend (1948-2001) estimated using tide gauges (1.43 ± 0.09 mm/yr) in the Mediterranean Sea, and is in better agreement than before with the global long-term sea level trend (1.7 - 1.8 mm/yr). Simulation studies indicate that the time-varying mass variations of Mediterranean Sea likely are sensitive to GOCE at the few mEötvös level. One of GOCE's primary high-level data products is the global gravity model with anticipated geoid accuracy of 1 cm RMS and a spatial resolution of 130 km or longer. Actually, the International Centre for Global Earth Models (ICGEM) distributes some GOCE's Global Gravity field Models (GGMs) like GO_CONS_GCF_2_DIR (Bruinsma et al, 2010), GO_CONS_GCF_2_TIM (Pail et al, 2010a), GO_CONS_GCF_2_SPW (Migliaccio et al, 2010), GOCO01S (Pail et al, 2010b). The work focuses on the comparison between these GOCE's GGMs, EGM2008 and EIGEN-51C, with sea gravity anomalies and geoid undulations provided by existing local and regional geoids - like IBERGEO (Sevilla, 2008), IGG (Corchete et al, 2005), etc. - in the Western Mediterranean Sea in order to find the GGM that best fits this area. We also try to estimate how the GOCE geoid data, provided by ESA, works on the Western Mediterranean Sea in order to prepare future geomatic issues.

  17. Characterisation of whisker control in the California sea lion (Zalophus californianus) during a complex, dynamic sensorimotor task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milne, Alyx O; Grant, Robyn A

    2014-10-01

    Studies in pinniped whisker use have shown that their whiskers are extremely sensitive to tactile and hydrodynamic signals. While pinnipeds position their whiskers on to objects and have some control over their whisker protractions, it has always been thought that head movements are more responsible for whisker positioning than the movement of the whiskers themselves. This study uses ball balancing, a dynamic sensorimotor skill that is often used in human and robotic coordination studies, to promote sea lion whisker movements during the task. For the first time, using tracked video footage, we show that sea lion whisker movements respond quickly (26.70 ms) and mirror the movement of the ball, much more so than the head. We show that whisker asymmetry and spread are both altered to help sense and control the ball during balancing. We believe that by designing more dynamic sensorimotor tasks we can start to characterise the active nature of this specialised sensory system in pinnipeds.

  18. The Marine Mammal Brain Game: Students Compare the Brains and Behaviors of Dolphins, Sea Lions, and Manatees in This Unique Standards-Based Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demetrikopoulos, Melissa K.; Morris, Lee G.; Fobbs, Archibald J., Jr.; Johnson, John I.

    2005-01-01

    Dolphins, manatees, and sea lions are all aquatic mammals but are not closely related taxonomically. All three species are marine mammals, meaning they spend part or all of their lives in the sea and contiguous bodies of water. Dolphins belong to the taxonomic order Cetacea, which includes whales, dolphins, and porpoises. Manatees (sea cows),…

  19. The Marine Mammal Brain Game: Students Compare the Brains and Behaviors of Dolphins, Sea Lions, and Manatees in This Unique Standards-Based Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demetrikopoulos, Melissa K.; Morris, Lee G.; Fobbs, Archibald J., Jr.; Johnson, John I.

    2005-01-01

    Dolphins, manatees, and sea lions are all aquatic mammals but are not closely related taxonomically. All three species are marine mammals, meaning they spend part or all of their lives in the sea and contiguous bodies of water. Dolphins belong to the taxonomic order Cetacea, which includes whales, dolphins, and porpoises. Manatees (sea cows),…

  20. Age specific survival rates of Steller sea lions at rookeries with divergent population trends in the Russian Far East.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexey V Altukhov

    Full Text Available After a dramatic population decline, Steller sea lions have begun to recover throughout most of their range. However, Steller sea lions in the Western Aleutians and Commander Islands are continuing to decline. Comparing survival rates between regions with different population trends may provide insights into the factors driving the dynamics, but published data on vital rates have been extremely scarce, especially in regions where the populations are still declining. Fortunately, an unprecedented dataset of marked Steller sea lions at rookeries in the Russian Far East is available, allowing us to determine age and sex specific survival in sea lions up to 22 years old. We focused on survival rates in three areas in the Russian range with differing population trends: the Commander Islands (Medny Island rookery, Eastern Kamchatka (Kozlov Cape rookery and the Kuril Islands (four rookeries. Survival rates differed between these three regions, though not necessarily as predicted by population trends. Pup survival was higher where the populations were declining (Medny Island or not recovering (Kozlov Cape than in all Kuril Island rookeries. The lowest adult (> 3 years old female survival was found on Medny Island and this may be responsible for the continued population decline there. However, the highest adult survival was found at Kozlov Cape, not in the Kuril Islands where the population is increasing, so we suggest that differences in birth rates might be an important driver of these divergent population trends. High pup survival on the Commander Islands and Kamchatka Coast may be a consequence of less frequent (e.g. biennial reproduction there, which may permit females that skip birth years to invest more in their offspring, leading to higher pup survival, but this hypothesis awaits measurement of birth rates in these areas.

  1. Age specific survival rates of Steller sea lions at rookeries with divergent population trends in the Russian Far East.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Altukhov, Alexey V; Andrews, Russel D; Calkins, Donald G; Gelatt, Thomas S; Gurarie, Eliezer D; Loughlin, Thomas R; Mamaev, Evgeny G; Nikulin, Victor S; Permyakov, Peter A; Ryazanov, Sergey D; Vertyankin, Vladimir V; Burkanov, Vladimir N

    2015-01-01

    After a dramatic population decline, Steller sea lions have begun to recover throughout most of their range. However, Steller sea lions in the Western Aleutians and Commander Islands are continuing to decline. Comparing survival rates between regions with different population trends may provide insights into the factors driving the dynamics, but published data on vital rates have been extremely scarce, especially in regions where the populations are still declining. Fortunately, an unprecedented dataset of marked Steller sea lions at rookeries in the Russian Far East is available, allowing us to determine age and sex specific survival in sea lions up to 22 years old. We focused on survival rates in three areas in the Russian range with differing population trends: the Commander Islands (Medny Island rookery), Eastern Kamchatka (Kozlov Cape rookery) and the Kuril Islands (four rookeries). Survival rates differed between these three regions, though not necessarily as predicted by population trends. Pup survival was higher where the populations were declining (Medny Island) or not recovering (Kozlov Cape) than in all Kuril Island rookeries. The lowest adult (> 3 years old) female survival was found on Medny Island and this may be responsible for the continued population decline there. However, the highest adult survival was found at Kozlov Cape, not in the Kuril Islands where the population is increasing, so we suggest that differences in birth rates might be an important driver of these divergent population trends. High pup survival on the Commander Islands and Kamchatka Coast may be a consequence of less frequent (e.g. biennial) reproduction there, which may permit females that skip birth years to invest more in their offspring, leading to higher pup survival, but this hypothesis awaits measurement of birth rates in these areas.

  2. An empirical case study examining effectiveness of environmental enrichment in two captive Australian Sea Lions (Neophoca cinerea).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Bradley P; Litchfield, Carla A

    2010-01-01

    This case study examined the effect of environmental enrichment on the activity budgets of a male and female Australian Sea Lion (Neophoca cinerea) housed together at Adelaide Zoo. Using non-food-related (intrinsic) and food-related (extrinsic) enrichment objects, the study conducted an ABABA (withdrawal) experimental design over a 30-day period (180 hr). The study expected extrinsically reinforcing objects to be more effective than intrinsically reinforcing objects in reducing pattern swimming. The male sea lion spent more than 45% of scans engaged in pattern swimming during the initial baseline, which was reduced by at least 25% when enrichment items were present. However, there was no evidence of stereotypic behavior in the female sea lion, indicating that individual differences may exist. When enrichment was present, the study observed more active behaviors in both nonhuman animals. They spent more time interacting with the non-food-related objects overall. Therefore, introducing simple enrichment devices offers a cheap, practical, and effective method of adding complexity to the environment, which is likely to benefit the animals' welfare and enhance the zoo-visitor experience.

  3. In utero domoic acid toxicity: a fetal basis to adult disease in the California sea lion (Zalophus californianus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramsdell, John S; Zabka, Tanja S

    2008-06-06

    California sea lions have been a repeated subject of investigation for early life toxicity, which has been documented to occur with increasing frequency from late February through mid-May in association with organochlorine (PCB and DDT) poisoning and infectious disease in the 1970's and domoic acid poisoning in the last decade. The mass early life mortality events result from the concentrated breeding grounds and synchronization of reproduction over a 28 day post partum estrus cycle and 11 month in utero phase. This physiological synchronization is triggered by a decreasing photoperiod of 11.48 h/day that occurs approximately 90 days after conception at the major California breeding grounds. The photoperiod trigger activates implantation of embryos to proceed with development for the next 242 days until birth. Embryonic diapause is a selectable trait thought to optimize timing for food utilization and male migratory patterns; yet from the toxicological perspective presented here also serves to synchronize developmental toxicity of pulsed environmental events such as domoic acid poisoning. Research studies in laboratory animals have defined age-dependent neurotoxic effects during development and windows of susceptibility to domoic acid exposure. This review will evaluate experimental domoic acid neurotoxicity in developing rodents and, aided by comparative allometric projections, will analyze potential prenatal toxicity and exposure susceptibility in the California sea lion. This analysis should provide a useful tool to forecast fetal toxicity and understand the impact of fetal toxicity on adult disease of the California sea lion.

  4. The normal genital tract of the female California sea lion (Zalophus californianus): cyclic changes in histomorphology and hormone receptor distribution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colegrove, Kathleen M; Gulland, Frances M D; Naydan, Diane K; Lowenstine, Linda J

    2009-11-01

    Changes in reproductive tract histomorphology, and estrogen (ERalpha) and progesterone receptor (PR) expression throughout the breeding cycle were evaluated in free-ranging stranded female California sea lions (Zalophus californianus). Hormone receptor expression in the ovaries, uterus, cervix, and vagina was evaluated using an immunohistochemical technique with monoclonal antibodies. During a large portion of the cycle, ovaries contained both a corpora lutea (CL) and follicles in varying stages of development. In the periods of pupping and estrus during June and July, and in the spring morphologic features of the endometrium suggested estrogen influence. There were areas of squamous differentiation in the pseudostratified columnar epithelium of the cervix and vagina in some animals during estrus and in the spring. Estrogen receptor immunohistochemical scores were highest during pupping and estrus and in the spring and lowest during embryonic diapause. Cyclic changes in uterine PR expression throughout the cycle were minimal. Both ERalpha and PR were expressed in epithelial and stromal cells throughout the cervix and vagina, however, receptor expression was typically higher in the stroma. Stromal cell hormone receptors may play an important role in epithelial responses to circulating sex hormones. The results of this investigation add to the general knowledge of California sea lion reproduction and establish baseline information on reproductive tract hormone receptors that will aid in determining the factors involved in urogenital cancer development in sea lions.

  5. In Utero Domoic Acid Toxicity: A Fetal Basis to Adult Disease in the California Sea Lion (Zalophus californianus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tanja S. Zabka

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available California sea lions have been a repeated subject of investigation for early life toxicity, which has been documented to occur with increasing frequency from late February through mid-May in association with organochlorine (PCB and DDT poisoning and infectious disease in the 1970's and domoic acid poisoning in the last decade. The mass early life mortality events result from the concentrated breeding grounds and synchronization of reproduction over a 28 day post partum estrus cycle and 11 month in utero phase. This physiological synchronization is triggered by a decreasing photoperiod of 11.48 h/day that occurs approximately 90 days after conception at the major California breeding grounds. The photoperiod trigger activates implantation of embryos to proceed with development for the next 242 days until birth. Embryonic diapause is a selectable trait thought to optimize timing for food utilization and male migratory patterns; yet from the toxicological perspective presented here also serves to synchronize developmental toxicity of pulsed environmental events such as domoic acid poisoning. Research studies in laboratory animals have defined age-dependent neurotoxic effects during development and windows of susceptibility to domoic acid exposure. This review will evaluate experimental domoic acid neurotoxicity in developing rodents and, aided by comparative allometric projections, will analyze potential prenatal toxicity and exposure susceptibility in the California sea lion. This analysis should provide a useful tool to forecast fetal toxicity and understand the impact of fetal toxicity on adult disease of the California sea lion.

  6. Common cancer in a wild animal: the California sea lion (Zalophus californianus) as an emerging model for carcinogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Browning, Helen M; Gulland, Frances M D; Hammond, John A; Colegrove, Kathleen M; Hall, Ailsa J

    2015-07-19

    Naturally occurring cancers in non-laboratory species have great potential in helping to decipher the often complex causes of neoplasia. Wild animal models could add substantially to our understanding of carcinogenesis, particularly of genetic and environmental interactions, but they are currently underutilized. Studying neoplasia in wild animals is difficult and especially challenging in marine mammals owing to their inaccessibility, lack of exposure history, and ethical, logistical and legal limits on experimentation. Despite this, California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) offer an opportunity to investigate risk factors for neoplasia development that have implications for terrestrial mammals and humans who share much of their environment and diet. A relatively accessible California sea lion population on the west coast of the USA has a high prevalence of urogenital carcinoma and is regularly sampled during veterinary care in wildlife rehabilitation centres. Collaborative studies have revealed that genotype, persistent organic pollutants and a herpesvirus are all associated with this cancer. This paper reviews research to date on the epidemiology and pathogenesis of urogenital carcinoma in this species, and presents the California sea lion as an important and currently underexploited wild animal model of carcinogenesis.

  7. Stable isotope values in pup vibrissae reveal geographic variation in diets of gestating Steller sea lions Eumetopias jubatus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scherer, Rick D.; Doll, Andrew C.; Rea, Lorrie D.; Christ, Aaron M.; Stricker, Craig A.; Witteveen, Briana; Kline, Thomas C.; Kurle, Carolyn M.; Wunder, Michael B.

    2015-01-01

    Multiple factors, including limitation in food resources, have been proposed as possible causes for the lack of recovery of the endangered western segment of the Steller sea lion population in the United States. Because maternal body condition has important consequences on fetal development and neonatal survival, the diets of pregnant females may be particularly important in regulating population sizes. We used the stable carbon and nitrogen isotope values of vibrissae from Steller sea lion pups as an indirect indicator of maternal diets during gestation. Combining these data with isotope data from potential prey species in a Bayesian mixing model, we generated proportional estimates of dietary consumption for key prey. Our analysis indicated that females in the most westerly metapopulations relied heavily on Atka mackerel and squid, whereas females inhabiting the Gulf of Alaska region had a fairly mixed diet, and the metapopulation of Southeast Alaska showed a strong reliance on forage fish. These results are similar to previous data from scat collections; however, they indicate a possible under-representation of soft-bodied prey (squid) or prey with fragile skeletons (forage fish) from analyses of data from scats. This study supports the utility of stable isotope modeling in predicting diet composition in gestating adult female Steller sea lions during winter, using pup vibrissae.

  8. Evidence of injury caused by gas bubbles in a live marine mammal: barotrauma in a California sea lion Zalophus californianus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Bonn, W; Montie, E; Dennison, S; Pussini, N; Cook, P; Greig, D; Barakos, J; Colegrove, K; Gulland, F

    2011-09-09

    A yearling male California sea lion Zalophus californianus with hypermetric ataxia and bilateral negative menace reflexes was brought to The Marine Mammal Center, Sausalito, California, U.S.A., in late 2009 for medical assessment and treatment. The clinical signs were due to multiple gas bubbles within the cerebellum. These lesions were intraparenchymal, multifocal to coalescing, spherical to ovoid, and varied from 0.5 to 2.4 cm diameter. The gas composed 21.3% of the total cerebellum volume. Three rib fractures were also noted during diagnostic evaluation and were presumed to be associated with the gas bubbles in the brain. The progression of clinical signs and lesion appearance were monitored with magnetic resonance imaging, cognitive function testing and computed tomography. Gas filled voids in the cerebellum were filled with fluid on follow up images. Clinical signs resolved and the sea lion was released with a satellite tag attached. Post release the animal travelled approximately 75 km north and 80 km south of the release site and the tag recorded dives of over 150 m depth. The animal re-stranded 25 d following release and died of a subacute bronchopneumonia and pleuritis. This is the first instance of clinical injury due to gas bubble formation described in a living pinniped and the first sea lion with quantifiable cerebellar damage to take part in spatial learning and memory testing.

  9. Foraging behavior of lactating South American sea lions (Otaria flavescens) and spatial-temporal resource overlap with the Uruguayan fisheries

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riet-Sapriza, Federico G.; Costa, Daniel P.; Franco-Trecu, Valentina; Marín, Yamandú; Chocca, Julio; González, Bernardo; Beathyate, Gastón; Louise Chilvers, B.; Hückstadt, Luis A.

    2013-04-01

    Resource competition between fisheries and marine mammal continue to raise concern worldwide. Understanding this complex conflict requires data on spatial and dietary overlap of marine mammal and fisheries. In Uruguay the South American sea lions population has been dramatically declining over the past decade. The reasons for this population decline are unknown but may include the following: (1) direct harvesting; (2) reduced prey availability and distribution as a consequence of environmental change; or (3) biological interaction with fisheries. This study aims to determine resource overlap and competition between South American sea lions (SASL, Otaria flavescens, n=10) and the artisanal fisheries (AF), and the coastal bottom trawl fisheries (CBTF). We integrated data on sea lions diet (scat analysis), spatial and annual consumption estimates; and foraging behavior-satellite-tracking data from lactating SASL with data on fishing effort areas and fisheries landings. We found that lactating SASL are benthic divers and forage in shallow water within the continental shelf. SASL's foraging areas overlapped with CBTF and AF fisheries operational areas. Dietary analysis indicated a high degree of overlap between the diet of SASL and the AF and CBTF fisheries catch. The results of our work show differing degrees of spatial resource overlap with AF and CBTF, highlighting that there are differences in potential impact from each fishery; and that different management/conservation approaches may need to be taken to solve the fisheries-SASL conflict.

  10. California sea lions (Zalophus californianus californianus) have lower chlorinated hydrocarbon contents in northern Baja California, Mexico, than in California, USA

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Del Toro, Ligeia [Universidad Autonoma de Baja California (UABC), Facultad de Ciencias Marinas, Ensenada, Baja California (Mexico); Investigacion y Conservacion de Mamiferos Marinos de Ensenada, A.C., Placido Mata 2309 Depto. D-5, Condominio Las Fincas, Ensenada, Baja California 22810 (Mexico); Heckel, Gisela [Investigacion y Conservacion de Mamiferos Marinos de Ensenada, A.C., Placido Mata 2309 Depto. D-5, Condominio Las Fincas, Ensenada, Baja California 22810 (Mexico) and Centro de Investigacion Cientifica y de Educacion Superior de Ensenada, B.C. Km 107 Carretera Tijuana-Ensenada, Ensenada, Baja California 22860 (Mexico)]. E-mail: gheckel@cicese.mx; Camacho-Ibar, Victor F. [Instituto de Investigaciones Oceanologicas, UABC, Apdo. Postal 453, Ensenada, Baja California 22860 (Mexico); Schramm, Yolanda [Universidad Autonoma de Baja California (UABC), Facultad de Ciencias Marinas, Ensenada, Baja California (Mexico); Investigacion y Conservacion de Mamiferos Marinos de Ensenada, A.C., Placido Mata 2309 Depto. D-5, Condominio Las Fincas, Ensenada, Baja California 22810 (Mexico)

    2006-07-15

    Chlorinated hydrocarbons (CHs) were determined in blubber samples of 18 California sea lions (Zalophus californianus californianus) that stranded dead along Todos Santos Bay, Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico, January 2000-November 2001. {sigma}DDTs were the dominant group (geometric mean 3.8 {mu}g/g lipid weight), followed by polychlorinated biphenyls ({sigma}PCBs, 2.96 {mu}g/g), chlordanes (0.12 {mu}g/g) and hexachlorocyclohexanes (0.06 {mu}g/g). The {sigma}DDTs/{sigma}PCBs ratio was 1.3. We found CH levels more than one order of magnitude lower than those reported for California sea lion samples collected along the California coast, USA, during the same period as our study. This sharp north-south gradient suggests that Z. californianus stranded in Ensenada (most of them males) would probably have foraged during the summer near rookeries 500-1000 km south of Ensenada and the rest of the year migrate northwards, foraging along the Baja California peninsula, including Ensenada, and probably farther north. - Results suggest that sea lion prey must also have lower hydrocarbons in Baja California than in California in the USA.

  11. Future trends of the Sea Surface Temperature for the Caribbean and the Western Mediterranean Seas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Garcies

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Global Climate Models foresee a general warming of the atmosphere, with varying intensity depending on the characteristics of each model and the hypotheses made on the release of gases of antropic origin. The warming is not expected to be homogeneous over the planet. In this work we focus on the evolution of the sea surface temperature of the Caribbean and the Mediterranean seas, and its linked with the likely prolongation of the hurricane season and the increase of strength of the hurricanes in the Caribbean, as well as with the more apt conditions for severe weather in the Mediterranean sea. In both areas more frequent occurence and intensity of severe weather events are expected due to the predicted increment of the sea surface temperature, 1.5ºC for the Caribbean sea and 2.5ºC for the Mediterranean sea.

  12. Sediment reworking rates in deep sediments of the Mediterranean Sea

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Barsanti, M., E-mail: mattia.barsanti@enea.it [ENEA, Marine Environment Research Centre, La Spezia (Italy); Delbono, I., E-mail: ivana.delbono@enea.it [ENEA, Marine Environment Research Centre, La Spezia (Italy); Schirone, A., E-mail: antonio.schirone@enea.it [ENEA, Marine Environment Research Centre, La Spezia (Italy); Langone, L., E-mail: leonardo.langone@bo.ismar.cnr.it [CNR, ISMAR Istituto di Scienze Marine, U.O.S. Bologna (Italy); Miserocchi, S., E-mail: stefano.miserocchi@bo.ismar.cnr.it [CNR, ISMAR Istituto di Scienze Marine, U.O.S. Bologna (Italy); Salvi, S., E-mail: stefano.salvi@enea.it [ENEA, Research Centre Brasimone, Camugnano (Italy); Delfanti, R., E-mail: roberta.delfanti@enea.it [ENEA, Marine Environment Research Centre, La Spezia (Italy)

    2011-07-01

    Different pelagic areas of the Mediterranean Sea have been investigated in order to quantify physical and biological mixing processes in deep sea sediments. Herein, results of eleven sediment cores sampled at different deep areas (> 2000 m) of the Western and Eastern Mediterranean Sea are presented. {sup 210}Pb{sub xs} and {sup 137}Cs vertical profiles, together with {sup 14}C dating, are used to identify the main processes characterising the different areas and, finally, controlling mixing depths (SML) and bioturbation coefficients (D{sub b}). Radionuclide vertical profiles and inventories indicate that bioturbation processes are the dominant processes responsible for sediment reworking in deep sea environments. Results show significant differences in sediment mixing depths and bioturbation coefficients among areas of the Mediterranean Sea characterised by different trophic regimes. In particular, in the Oran Rise area, where the Almeria-Oran Front induces frequent phytoplankton blooms, we calculate the highest values of sediment mixing layers (13 cm) and bioturbation coefficients (0.187 cm{sup 2} yr{sup -1}), and the highest values of {sup 210}Pb{sub xs} and {sup 137}Cs inventories. Intermediate values of SML and D{sub b} ({approx} 6 cm and {approx} 0.040 cm{sup 2} yr{sup -1}, respectively) characterise the mesothrophic Algero-Balearic basin, while in the Southern Tyrrhenian Sea mixing parameters (SML of 3 cm and D{sub b} of 0.011 cm{sup 2} yr{sup -1}) are similar to those calculated for the oligotrophic Eastern Mediterranean (SML of 2 cm and D{sub b} of {approx} 0.005 cm{sup 2} yr{sup -1}). - Research highlights: {yields} Physical and biological mixing processes in the Mediterranean Sea are investigated. {yields} Results of 11 sediment cores in deep areas of the Mediterranean Sea are shown. {yields} {sup 210}Pb{sub xs} and {sup 137}Cs vertical profiles are analysed. {yields} New data on {sup 210}Pb and {sup 137}Cs inventories of Mediterranean deep sediments are

  13. Space-time variability of alkalinity in the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Cossarini

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available The paper provides a basin assessment of the spatial distribution of ocean alkalinity in the Mediterranean Sea. The assessment is made using a 3-D transport-biogeochemical-carbonate model to integrate the available experimental findings, which also constrains model output. The results indicate that the Mediterranean Sea shows alkalinity values that are much higher than those observed in the Atlantic Ocean on a basin-wide scale. A marked west-to-east surface gradient of alkalinity is reproduced as a response to the terrestrial discharges, the mixing effect with the Atlantic water entering from the Gibraltar Strait and the Black Sea water from Dardanelles, and the surface flux of evaporation minus precipitation. Dense water production in marginal seas (Adriatic and Aegean Seas, where alkaline inputs are relevant, and the Mediterranean thermohaline circulation sustains the west-to-east gradient along the entire water column. In the surface layers, alkalinity has a relevant seasonal cycle (up to 40 μmol kg−1 that is driven both by physical and biological processes. A comparison of alkalinity vs. salinity indicates that different regions present different relationships. In regions of freshwater influence, the two measures are negatively correlated due to riverine alkalinity input, whereas they are positively correlated in open seas. Alkalinity always is much higher than in the Atlantic waters, which might indicate a higher than usual buffering capacity towards ocean acidification, even at high concentrations of dissolved inorganic carbon.

  14. Loss of large predatory sharks from the Mediterranean Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferretti, Francesco; Myers, Ransom A; Serena, Fabrizio; Lotze, Heike K

    2008-08-01

    Evidence for severe declines in large predatory fishes is increasing around the world. Because of its long history of intense fishing, the Mediterranean Sea offers a unique perspective on fish population declines over historical timescales. We used a diverse set of records dating back to the early 19th and mid 20th century to reconstruct long-term population trends of large predatory sharks in the northwestern Mediterranean Sea. We compiled 9 time series of abundance indices from commercial and recreational fishery landings, scientific surveys, and sighting records. Generalized linear models were used to extract instantaneous rates of change from each data set, and a meta-analysis was conducted to compare population trends. Only 5 of the 20 species we considered had sufficient records for analysis. Hammerhead (Sphyrna spp.), blue (Prionace glauca), mackerel (Isurus oxyrinchus and Lamna nasus), and thresher sharks (Alopias vulpinus) declined between 96 and 99.99% relative to their former abundance. According to World Conservation Union (IUCN) criteria, these species would be considered critically endangered. So far, the lack of quantitative population assessments has impeded shark conservation in the Mediterranean Sea. Our study fills this critical information gap, suggesting that current levels of exploitation put large sharks at risk of extinction in the Mediterranean Sea. Possible ecosystem effects of these losses involve a disruption of top-down control and a release of midlevel consumers.

  15. Aerosol transport of polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons over the Mediterranean Sea

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grimalt, J.; Albaiges, J.; Sicre, M.A.; Marty, J.C.; Saliot, A.

    1988-01-01

    A study on the composition of PAH in particle-sized aerosols collected over the open sea (Western Mediterranean) is presented, showing for first time the importance of their atmospheric deposition fluxes. The results are also discussed in terms of air mass trajectories, organic sources, and particle size association. (orig./RB)

  16. Intestinal helminth fauna of the South American sea lion Otaria flavescens and fur seal Arctocephalus australis from northern Patagonia, Argentina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández-Orts, J S; Montero, F E; Juan-García, A; García, N A; Crespo, E A; Raga, J A; Aznar, F J

    2013-09-01

    We report on the intestinal helminth fauna of 56 South American sea lions, Otaria flavescens, and 5 South American fur seals, Arctocephalus australis, from northern Patagonia, Argentina. A total of 97,325 helminth specimens were collected from sea lions. Gravid individuals were represented by 6 species of parasites: 1 digenean (Ascocotyle (Ascocotyle) patagoniensis), 1 cestode (Diphyllobothrium spp.), 3 nematodes (Uncinaria hamiltoni, Contracaecum ogmorhini s.s., Pseudoterranova cattani) and 1 acanthocephalan (Corynosoma australe). In addition, third-stage larvae of 2 nematodes (Contracaecum sp. and Anisakis sp. type I) and 3 juvenile acanthocephalans (Andracantha sp., Profilicollis chasmagnathi and Corynosoma cetaceum) were also collected. Andracantha sp., C. ogmorhini s.s. and P. chasmagnathi represent new host records. A total of 1516 helminth specimens were collected from fur seals. Gravid individuals were represented by three species of parasites, namely, Diphyllobothrium spp., C. ogmorhini s.s. and C. australe. In addition, larvae of Contracaecum sp. and P. cattani, juveniles of C. cetaceum and immature cestodes (Tetrabothriidae gen. sp.) were also collected. Corynosoma australe was the most prevalent and abundant parasite in both hosts, accounting for >90% of all specimens. Sea lions and furs seals from northern Patagonia harbour the intestinal helminth communities that could be predicted for otariids, i.e. the combination of species of the genera Corynosoma, Diphyllobothrium, Pseudoterranova, Contracaecum and, in pups, Uncinaria. Additionally, both species of otariid are apparently unsuitable hosts (i.e. non-hosts) for as many as five parasite taxa. The inclusion or exclusion of these species affects estimation of species richness at both component community (11 versus 6 species in sea lions; 7 versus 3 species in fur seals) and infracommunity (mean: 3.1 versus 2.6 in sea lions; 2.2 versus 1.7 species) levels. Information about the reproductive status of

  17. Patterns in planktonic metabolism in the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Regaudie-de-Gioux

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Planktonic gross community production (GPP, net community production (NCP and community respiration (CR across the Mediterranean Sea was examined in two cruises, Thresholds 2006 and 2007, each crossing the Mediterranean from West to East to test for consistent variation along this longitudinal gradient in late spring to early summer. GPP averaged 2.4±0.4 mmol O2 m−3 d−1, CR averaged 3.8±0.5 mmol O2 m−3 d−1, and NCP averaged – 0.8±0.6 mmol O2 m−3 d−1 across the studied sections, indicative of a tendency for a net heterotrophic metabolism in late spring to early summer, prevalent across studied sections of the Mediterranean Sea as reflected in 70% of negative NCP estimates. The median P/R ratio was 0.6, also indicating a strong prevalence of heterotrophic communities (P/R<1 along the studied sections of the Mediterranean Sea. The communities tended to be net heterotrophic (i.e. P/R<1 at GPP less than 2.8 mmol O2 m−3 d−1. The Western Mediterranean tended to support a higher gross primary production and community respiration than the Eastern basin did, but these differences were not statistically significant (t-test, p>0.05. The net heterotrophy of the studied sections of the Mediterranean Sea indicates that allochthonous carbon should be important to subsidise planktonic metabolism during the late spring.

  18. Palaeoceanography of the interglacial eastern Mediterranean Sea

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Marino, G.

    2008-01-01

    The sensitivity of the present interglacial climate to the ongoing anthropogenic-driven increase of atmospheric greenhouse gas poses a fundamental concern to modern society. The Mediterranean region is responding with a distinct change towards drier and warmer conditions, which affects also the hydr

  19. Palaeoceanography of the interglacial eastern Mediterranean Sea

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Marino, G.

    2008-01-01

    The sensitivity of the present interglacial climate to the ongoing anthropogenic-driven increase of atmospheric greenhouse gas poses a fundamental concern to modern society. The Mediterranean region is responding with a distinct change towards drier and warmer conditions, which affects also the hydr

  20. Hydrocarbons, PCBs and DDT in the NW Mediterranean deep-sea fish Mora moro

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solé, Montserrat; Porte, Cinta; Albaigés, Joan

    2001-02-01

    Data on aliphatic and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and DDTs in the deep-sea fish Mora moro are reported in relation to the animal's weight/size and tissues (muscle, liver, digestive tube and gills). Fish samples were collected in the Gulf of Lions (NW Mediterranean) at an approximate depth of 1000 m. The concentrations of these organic pollutants followed the trend musclelipid content of the organs. No clear bioaccumulation dependence on fish weight/size was observed for gills, digestive tube and liver when the fat contents of these tissues were taken into account. However, the concentrations in muscle decreased with size, possibly implying a simple dilution effect by the increase of body weight. Hydrocarbons, and particularly PAHs, were strongly depleted in all tissues with respect to organochlorinated compounds if compared with the amounts present in bottom waters and sediment. Smaller specimens displayed for most pollutants qualitatively different patterns than larger fish, which could be attributed to their particular habitat/diet. The aliphatic hydrocarbon profiles suggested that Mora moro was exposed to a more predominant intake of biogenic rather than petrogenic hydrocarbons. The entrance and storage organs exhibited characteristic PAH and PCB distributions, reflecting different bioaccumulation and metabolic pathways. Compared with the profiles currently found in surface fish species, a relatively higher contribution of heavier components, namely hepta- and octochlorinated PCBs, and 4-6-ringed PAHs, was found in the deep-sea fish.

  1. Accumulation and maternal transfer of polychlorinated biphenyls in Steller Sea Lions (Eumetopias jubatus) from Prince William Sound and the Bering Sea, Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jun; Hülck, Kathrin; Hong, Su-Myeong; Atkinson, Shannon; Li, Qing X

    2011-01-01

    The western stock of the Steller sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus) in the northern Pacific Ocean has declined by approximately 80% over the past 30 years. This led to the listing of this sea lion population as an endangered species in 1997. Chemical pollution is [corrected] one of several contributing causes. In the present study, 145 individual PCBs were determined in tissues of male sea lions from Tatitlek (Prince William Sound) and St. Paul Island (Bering Sea), and placentae from the Aleutian Islands. PCBs 90/101, 118, and 153 were abundant in all the samples. The mean toxic equivalents (TEQ) were 2.6, 4.7 and 7.4 pg/g lw in the kidney, liver, and blubber samples, respectively. The mean TEQ in placentae was 8 pg/g lw. Total PCBs concentrations (2.6-7.9 μg/g lw) in livers of some males were within a range known to cause physiological effects, further [corrected] suggesting the possibility of adverse effects on this stock.

  2. Systemic mycosis in a California sea lion (Zalophus californianus) with detection of cystofilobasidiales DNA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Field, Cara L; Tuttle, Allison D; Sidor, Inga F; Nyaoke, Akinyi; Deering, Kathleen M; Gilbert-Marcheterre, Kelly; Risatti, Guillermo; Spoon, Tracey; Meegan, Jenny; Romano, Tracy A; Frasca, Salvatore; Dunn, J Lawrence

    2012-03-01

    A 6-yr-old, intact male California sea lion (Zalophus californianus) with a systemic mycosis died after 5 wk of antifungal drug therapy. Antemortem clinical findings included hind flipper swelling, ring-lesions on skin of the flippers, and dermal nodules that increased in size and number spreading from the hind flippers and ventral abdomen to the foreflippers and muzzle. Lesions were accompanied by severe lymphadenopathy and development of systemic clinical signs despite therapy using itraconazole and later voriconazole. Histopathologic evaluation of biopsies revealed granulomatous dermatitis due to infection by fungus-producing yeast cells in tissue. Isolation attempts, using biopsied skin and tissue samples collected at necropsy, failed to yield growth of a fungus producing yeast cells like those in histologic section. Consensus polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests of biopsied skin for fungal DNA produced an amplicon having significant sequence identity with a Cystofilobasidiales, a fungus belonging to a subclade that includes several Cryptococcus spp. Histopathologic evaluation of necropsy tissues revealed a systemic mycosis with yeast cells disseminated throughout subcutis, lymph nodes, and viscera. Hepatic necrosis was identified associated with acute liver failure, possibly from the voriconazole administration. This is the first report documenting the clinical presentation, treatment, and pathologic findings of infection associated with Cystofilobasidiales in a marine mammal and serves to expand the understanding of mycoses in pinnipeds.

  3. Beat Keeping in a Sea Lion As Coupled Oscillation: Implications for Comparative Understanding of Human Rhythm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rouse, Andrew A; Cook, Peter F; Large, Edward W; Reichmuth, Colleen

    2016-01-01

    Human capacity for entraining movement to external rhythms-i.e., beat keeping-is ubiquitous, but its evolutionary history and neural underpinnings remain a mystery. Recent findings of entrainment to simple and complex rhythms in non-human animals pave the way for a novel comparative approach to assess the origins and mechanisms of rhythmic behavior. The most reliable non-human beat keeper to date is a California sea lion, Ronan, who was trained to match head movements to isochronous repeating stimuli and showed spontaneous generalization of this ability to novel tempos and to the complex rhythms of music. Does Ronan's performance rely on the same neural mechanisms as human rhythmic behavior? In the current study, we presented Ronan with simple rhythmic stimuli at novel tempos. On some trials, we introduced "perturbations," altering either tempo or phase in the middle of a presentation. Ronan quickly adjusted her behavior following all perturbations, recovering her consistent phase and tempo relationships to the stimulus within a few beats. Ronan's performance was consistent with predictions of mathematical models describing coupled oscillation: a model relying solely on phase coupling strongly matched her behavior, and the model was further improved with the addition of period coupling. These findings are the clearest evidence yet for parity in human and non-human beat keeping and support the view that the human ability to perceive and move in time to rhythm may be rooted in broadly conserved neural mechanisms.

  4. Beat Keeping in a Sea Lion as Coupled Oscillation: Implications for Comparative Understanding of Human Rhythm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew A Rouse

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Human capacity for entraining movement to external rhythms—i.e., beat keeping—is ubiquitous, but its evolutionary history and neural underpinnings remain a mystery. Recent findings of entrainment to simple and complex rhythms in non-human animals pave the way for a novel comparative approach to assess the origins and mechanisms of rhythmic behavior. The most reliable non-human beat keeper to date is a California sea lion, Ronan, who was trained to match head movements to isochronous repeating stimuli and showed spontaneous generalization of this ability to novel tempos and to the complex rhythms of music. Does Ronan’s performance rely on the same neural mechanisms as human rhythmic behavior? In the current study, we presented Ronan with simple rhythmic stimuli at novel tempos. On some trials, we introduced perturbations, altering either tempo or phase in the middle of a presentation. Ronan quickly adjusted her behavior following all perturbations, recovering her consistent phase and tempo relationships to the stimulus within a few beats. Ronan’s performance was consistent with predictions of mathematical models describing coupled oscillation: a model relying solely on phase coupling strongly matched her behavior, and the model was further improved with the addition of period coupling. These findings are the clearest evidence yet for parity in human and non-human beat keeping and support the view that the human ability to perceive and move in time to rhythm may be rooted in broadly conserved neural mechanisms.

  5. The cost of male aggression and polygyny in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leah R Gerber

    Full Text Available In polygynous mating systems, males often increase their fecundity via aggressive defense of mates and/or resources necessary for successful mating. Here we show that both male and female reproductive behavior during the breeding season (June-August affect female fecundity, a vital rate that is an important determinant of population growth rate and viability. By using 4 years of data on behavior and demography of California sea lions (Zalophus californianus, we found that male behavior and spatial dynamics--aggression and territory size--are significantly related to female fecundity. Higher rates of male aggression and larger territory sizes were associated with lower estimates of female fecundity within the same year. Female aggression was significantly and positively related to fecundity both within the same year as the behavior was measured and in the following year. These results indicate that while male aggression and defense of territories may increase male fecundity, such interactions may cause a reduction in the overall population growth rate by lowering female fecundity. Females may attempt to offset male-related reductions in female fecundity by increasing their own aggression-perhaps to defend pups from incidental injury or mortality. Thus in polygynous mating systems, male aggression may increase male fitness at the cost of female fitness and overall population viability.

  6. Human disturbance influences reproductive success and growth rate in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    French, Susannah S; González-Suárez, Manuela; Young, Julie K; Durham, Susan; Gerber, Leah R

    2011-03-16

    The environment is currently undergoing changes at both global (e.g., climate change) and local (e.g., tourism, pollution, habitat modification) scales that have the capacity to affect the viability of animal and plant populations. Many of these changes, such as human disturbance, have an anthropogenic origin and therefore may be mitigated by management action. To do so requires an understanding of the impact of human activities and changing environmental conditions on population dynamics. We investigated the influence of human activity on important life history parameters (reproductive rate, and body condition, and growth rate of neonate pups) for California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) in the Gulf of California, Mexico. Increased human presence was associated with lower reproductive rates, which translated into reduced long-term population growth rates and suggested that human activities are a disturbance that could lead to population declines. We also observed higher body growth rates in pups with increased exposure to humans. Increased growth rates in pups may reflect a density dependent response to declining reproductive rates (e.g., decreased competition for resources). Our results highlight the potentially complex changes in life history parameters that may result from human disturbance, and their implication for population dynamics. We recommend careful monitoring of human activities in the Gulf of California and emphasize the importance of management strategies that explicitly consider the potential impact of human activities such as ecotourism on vertebrate populations.

  7. The cost of male aggression and polygyny in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gerber, Leah R; González-Suárez, Manuela; Hernández-Camacho, Claudia J; Young, Julie K; Sabo, John L

    2010-08-17

    In polygynous mating systems, males often increase their fecundity via aggressive defense of mates and/or resources necessary for successful mating. Here we show that both male and female reproductive behavior during the breeding season (June-August) affect female fecundity, a vital rate that is an important determinant of population growth rate and viability. By using 4 years of data on behavior and demography of California sea lions (Zalophus californianus), we found that male behavior and spatial dynamics--aggression and territory size--are significantly related to female fecundity. Higher rates of male aggression and larger territory sizes were associated with lower estimates of female fecundity within the same year. Female aggression was significantly and positively related to fecundity both within the same year as the behavior was measured and in the following year. These results indicate that while male aggression and defense of territories may increase male fecundity, such interactions may cause a reduction in the overall population growth rate by lowering female fecundity. Females may attempt to offset male-related reductions in female fecundity by increasing their own aggression-perhaps to defend pups from incidental injury or mortality. Thus in polygynous mating systems, male aggression may increase male fitness at the cost of female fitness and overall population viability.

  8. Human disturbance influences reproductive success and growth rate in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susannah S French

    Full Text Available The environment is currently undergoing changes at both global (e.g., climate change and local (e.g., tourism, pollution, habitat modification scales that have the capacity to affect the viability of animal and plant populations. Many of these changes, such as human disturbance, have an anthropogenic origin and therefore may be mitigated by management action. To do so requires an understanding of the impact of human activities and changing environmental conditions on population dynamics. We investigated the influence of human activity on important life history parameters (reproductive rate, and body condition, and growth rate of neonate pups for California sea lions (Zalophus californianus in the Gulf of California, Mexico. Increased human presence was associated with lower reproductive rates, which translated into reduced long-term population growth rates and suggested that human activities are a disturbance that could lead to population declines. We also observed higher body growth rates in pups with increased exposure to humans. Increased growth rates in pups may reflect a density dependent response to declining reproductive rates (e.g., decreased competition for resources. Our results highlight the potentially complex changes in life history parameters that may result from human disturbance, and their implication for population dynamics. We recommend careful monitoring of human activities in the Gulf of California and emphasize the importance of management strategies that explicitly consider the potential impact of human activities such as ecotourism on vertebrate populations.

  9. Tuberculosis in sea lions and fur seals from the south-western Atlantic coast.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernardelli, A; Bastida, R; Loureiro, J; Michelis, H; Romano, M I; Cataldi, A; Costa, E

    1996-09-01

    Diverse pathological conditions causing the strandings and/or deaths of several species of sea lions and seals on the northern coast of the province of Buenos Aires are being studied. Tuberculosis was diagnosed in six cases of strandings, involving two otariid seal species (one Otaria flavescens and five Arctocephalus australis), between March 1989 and December 1992. Necropsies were performed on all six cases. Granulomatous lesions were observed in the prescapular and hepatic lymph nodes. Lesions were also seen in the lungs, pleura, liver, spleen and peritoneum. Bacteriological isolation was attempted from all the samples. The isolates were identified as belonging to the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex. Some showed characteristics consistent with M. bovis, whereas others demonstrated properties of M. tuberculosis. Genomic deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) from these strains was analysed by restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP), using IS6110, a genetic marker found only in the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex. Using the IS6110 probe, similar fingerprints were obtained, suggesting a common source of infection. However, the pattern of DNA differed from DNA patterns of M. bovis isolated from humans and cattle in Argentina, which generally contain a unique 1.9 kbp band. These results suggest that mycobacteria isolated from wild seals form a different grouping inside the M. tuberculosis complex. This is the first time that tuberculosis has been detected in wild seals from the south-western Atlantic coast.

  10. Uncinaria hamiltoni (Nematoda: Ancylostomatidae) in South American sea lions, Otaria flavescens, from northern Patagonia, Argentina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berón-Vera, B; Crespo, E A; Raga, J A; Pedraza, S N

    2004-08-01

    Thirty-one South American sea lion pups (Otaria flavescens) found dead in Punta León, Argentina, during the summer of 2002, were examined for hookworms (Uncinaria hamiltoni). Parasite parameters were analyzed in 2 locations of the rookery, i.e., a traditional, well-structured breeding area and an expanding area with juveniles and a lax social structure. Prevalence of hookworms was 50% in both localities, and no difference was observed in prevalence between pup sexes (P > 0.05). Hookworms were concentrated in the small intestine. Transmammary transmission is assumed because only adult hookworms were found in the pups. The mean intensity of hookworms per pup was 135; the mean intensity in females (92.78) was significantly different (P 0.05) in intensity was found between the 2 breeding areas, although prevalence was higher in the traditional breeding area than in the other area. Location was the only factor affecting hookworm prevalence (P log-linear model: 0.9552; chi2: 1.5629). No apparent trend between body condition and intensity of hookworms was observed.

  11. Testing Bergmann's rule and the Rosenzweig hypothesis with craniometric studies of the South American sea lion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sepúlveda, Maritza; Oliva, Doris; Duran, L René; Urra, Alejandra; Pedraza, Susana N; Majluf, Patrícia; Goodall, Natalie; Crespo, Enrique A

    2013-04-01

    We tested the validity of Bergmann's rule and Rosenzweig's hypothesis through an analysis of the geographical variation of the skull size of Otaria flavescens along the entire distribution range of the species (except Brazil). We quantified the sizes of 606 adult South American sea lion skulls measured in seven localities of Peru, Chile, Uruguay, Argentina, and the Falkland/Malvinas Islands. Geographical and environmental variables included latitude, longitude, and monthly minimum, maximum, and mean air and ocean temperatures. We also included information on fish landings as a proxy for productivity. Males showed a positive relationship between condylobasal length (CBL) and latitude, and between CBL and the six temperature variables. By contrast, females showed a negative relationship between CBL and the same variables. Finally, female skull size showed a significant and positive correlation with fish landings, while males did not show any relationship with this variable. The body size of males conformed to Bergmann's rule, with larger individuals found in southern localities of South America. Females followed the converse of Bergmann's rule at the intraspecific level, but showed a positive relationship with the proxy for productivity, thus supporting Rosenzweig's hypothesis. Differences in the factors that drive body size in females and males may be explained by their different life-history strategies. Our analyses demonstrate that latitude and temperature are not the only factors that explain spatial variation in body size: others such as food availability are also important for explaining the ecogeographical patterns found in O. flavescens.

  12. Spatio-temporal patterns of key exploited marine species in the Northwestern Mediterranean Sea.

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    Marie Morfin

    Full Text Available This study analyzes the temporal variability/stability of the spatial distributions of key exploited species in the Gulf of Lions (Northwestern Mediterranean Sea. To do so, we analyzed data from the MEDITS bottom-trawl scientific surveys from 1994 to 2010 at 66 fixed stations and selected 12 key exploited species. We proposed a geostatistical approach to handle zero-inflated and non-stationary distributions and to test for the temporal stability of the spatial structures. Empirical Orthogonal Functions and other descriptors were then applied to investigate the temporal persistence and the characteristics of the spatial patterns. The spatial structure of the distribution (i.e. the pattern of spatial autocorrelation of the 12 key species studied remained highly stable over the time period sampled. The spatial distributions of all species obtained through kriging also appeared to be stable over time, while each species displayed a specific spatial distribution. Furthermore, adults were generally more densely concentrated than juveniles and occupied areas included in the distribution of juveniles. Despite the strong persistence of spatial distributions, we also observed that the area occupied by each species was correlated to its abundance: the more abundant the species, the larger the occupation area. Such a result tends to support MacCall's basin theory, according to which density-dependence responses would drive the expansion of those 12 key species in the Gulf of Lions. Further analyses showed that these species never saturated their habitats, suggesting that they are below their carrying capacity; an assumption in agreement with the overexploitation of several of these species. Finally, the stability of their spatial distributions over time and their potential ability to diffuse outside their main habitats give support to Marine Protected Areas as a potential pertinent management tool.

  13. Integrated survey of elemental stoichiometry (C, N, P from the Western to Eastern Mediterranean Sea

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    M. Pujo-Pay

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available This paper provides an extensive vertical and longitudinal description of the biogeochemistry in the whole Mediterranean Sea during the summer 2008. During this strong stratified period, the distribution of nutrients, particulate and dissolved organic carbon (DOC, nitrogen (DON and phosphorus (DOP were investigated along a 3000 km transect (BOUM cruise crossing the Western and Eastern Mediterranean basins. The partitioning of chemical C, N and P species among all these mineral and organic pools has been analysed to produce a detailed spatial and vertical extended examination of the elemental stoichiometry. Surface Mediterranean waters were depleted in nutrients and the thickness of this depleted layer increased towards the East from about 10 m in the Gulf of Lion to more than 100 m in the Levantine basin, concomitantly to the gradual deepening of the thermocline and nutriclines. We used threshold in oxygen concentration to discriminate the water column in three layers; surface (Biogenic Layer BL, intermediate (Mineralization Layer ML, and deep layer (DL and to propose a schematic representation of biogeochemical fluxes between the different compartments and to compare the functioning of the two basins. The stoichiometry revealed a clear longitudinal and vertical gradient in the mineral fraction with a P-depletion evidenced on both dimension. As a consequence of the severe deficiency in phosphorus, the C:N:P ratios in all pools within the BL largely exceed the Redfield ratios. Despite these gradients, the deep estimated fluxes in the mineral compartment tend towards the canonical Redfield values in both basins. A change in particulate matter composition has been evidenced by a C increase relative to N and P along the whole water column in the western basin and between BL and ML in the eastern one. More surprisingly, a decrease in N relative to P with depth was encountered in the whole Mediterranean Sea. We suggest that there was a more rapid

  14. Prokaryotic abundance and heterotrophic metabolism in the deep Mediterranean Sea

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    Rosabruna La Ferla

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available A synthesis of field data carried out in the Mediterranean Sea are presented, aimed at contributing to the knowledge of three prokaryotic-mediated processes and their implications on the Carbon cycle. The distribution of exoenzymatic activities, secondary production and respiration rates was studied together with the prokaryotic abundances. Particular attention was paid to the meso- and bathypelagic layers which play an important role in the Mediterranean carbon cycle. The study is noteworthy because of its large spatial scale spanning the entire Mediterranean Sea over 4 years. In addition, two Atlantic stations in front of the Gibraltar Strait were investigated. The longitudinal distribution of prokaryotic activities and abundance along the MED showed different trends along the depthlayers. In particular, higher exoenzymatic rates were detected in the Eastern basin compared to the Western one; carbon respiration rate showed patterns variable with the sampling periods in the epipelagic and bathypelagic layers, while a consistent Westwards decreasing trend at the mesopelagic layers occurred. Specific enzyme activities per cell showed high values in the deepest layers for leucine aminopeptidase. Comparison with Carbon respiration rate data collected before the 2000s showed changing patterns of microbial heterotrophic processes in the Mediterranean Sea.

  15. Population Abundance of the Endangered Galapagos Sea Lion Zalophus wollebaeki in the Southeastern Galapagos Archipelago

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riofrío-Lazo, Marjorie; Arreguín-Sánchez, Francisco; Páez-Rosas, Diego

    2017-01-01

    There is great concern regarding the population status of the endangered Galapagos sea lion (GSL) because it has drastically decreased over the last 30 years. We determined the population size and growth trend of the GSL in the Galapagos southeastern region (SER) at three population levels based on the available census data: 1) SER (2011–2015), including 13 rookeries on the four islands San Cristóbal (SC), Española, Floreana, and Santa Fe, comprising 58% of the archipelago’s population; 2) SC (2011–2015), including five rookeries, comprising 52% of the SER population; and 3) El Malecón (2005–2015), the largest rookery on SC and in the SER (43% of the population on SC and 22% in the SER). We also analyzed the influence of environmental variability on pup abundance in these rookeries. The current GSL population size in the SER, after applying correction factors to the counts, is estimated at approximately 2300–4100 individuals and has declined at an average annual rate (ʎ) of 8.7% over the last five years. A similar trend was determined for SC but at ʎ = 1.4% during the same period. For El Malecón, a count-based population viability analysis using a diffusion approximation approach showed that the population increased from 2005 to 2015 at ʎ = 2%. The interannual variability in pup abundance was associated with anomalies in sea surface temperature linked to oceanographic-atmospheric events, which impact the abundance and availability of prey, and ultimately may determine the population’s reproductive success. Since rookeries in the SER had different population trends, management actions should be implemented based on their specific conditions, giving priority to rookeries such as El Malecón, which, despite showing a slightly increasing population trend, still faces a high risk of extinction due to anthropogenic disturbances and environmental variability that may affect its growth and survival. PMID:28052081

  16. Improving estimates of riverine fresh water into the Mediterranean sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Fuxing; Polcher, Jan

    2017-04-01

    Estimating the freshwater input from the continents into the Mediterranean sea is a difficult endeavor due to the uncertainties from un-gauged rivers, human activities, and measurement of water flow at river outlet. One approach to estimate the freshwater inflow into the Mediterranean sea is based on the observed flux (about 63% available) and a simple annual water balance for rivers without observations (ignoring human usage and other processes). This method is the basis of most water balance studies of the Mediterranean sea and oceanic modelling activities, but it only provides annual mean values with a very strong assumption. Another approach is done by forcing a state of the art land surface model (LSM) with bias corrected atmospheric conditions. This method can estimate total fresh water flowing into the Mediterranean at daily scale but with all the caveats associated to models. We use data assimilation techniques by merging data between the model output (ORCHIDEE LSM developed at Institut Pierre Simon Laplace) and the observed river discharge from Global Runoff Data Center (GRDC) to correct the modelled fluxes with observations over the entire basin. Over each sub watershed, the GRDC data (if available) are applied to correct model simulated river discharge. This will allow to compensate for systematic errors of model or missing processes and provide estimates of the riverine input into the sea at high temporal and spatial resolution. We will analyze the freshwater inflow into the Mediterranean obtained here with different approaches reported in previous paper. The new estimates will serve for ocean modelling and water balance studies of the region.

  17. Constraints on the neodymium (Nd) oceanic cycle in the Mediterranean Sea using a high resolution coupled model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ayache, Mohamed; Jeandel, Catherine; Dutay, Jean-claude; Arsouze, Thomas

    2015-04-01

    Neodymium isotopic composition (Nd IC) is a tracer of oceanic circulation and lithogenic inputs to the ocean. An extensive compilation of published Nd isotopic values was realized in order to establish a database and a map of ɛNd and Nd concentrations characterizing all the Mediterranean margins. This was built based on different kinds of samples: riverine solid discharge deposited on the shelf, sedimentary material collected along the margins and geological material above or close to an oceanic margin (following Jeandel et al., 2007). The margin Nd isotopic signatures vary from non-radiogenic values around the Gulf of Lions (Nd IC values between -11.5 and -10), to radiogenic values around the Aegean and the Levantine sub-basins (Nd IC up to +6). Such West-East variation was also observed in the seawater data, which are becoming more radiogenic along the eastward circulation in the Mediterranean Sea (Tachikawa et al., 2004). The Nd budget proposed by these authors raised the hypothesis that the exchange of Nd along the margins could play a significant role in driving the oceanic distribution of this tracer. On a more global scale, it was further demonstrated and modelled that dissolved/particulate exchanges between continental margin sediments and open ocean (termed boundary exchange, BE), could be the dominant source-sink terms that determine the distribution of neodymium isotopes in the global ocean (Lacan and Jeandel, 2005a, Arsouze et al 2009). But this global scale study with it low-resolution configuration ORCA2 (2° of horizontal resolution) could not resolve many local and regional-scale features Our purpose is to test this hypothesis for the first time in the Mediterranean Sea by using a high resolution regional coupled model (1/12° of horizontal resolution). In a first approach we considered that boundary exchange is the only term governing Nd distribution in the Mediterranean Sea (other sources have been neglected). This aimed to validate the "Boundary

  18. Sexual segregation in juvenile New Zealand sea lion foraging ranges: implications for intraspecific competition, population dynamics and conservation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elaine S Leung

    Full Text Available Sexual segregation (sex differences in spatial organisation and resource use is observed in a large range of taxa. Investigating causes for sexual segregation is vital for understanding population dynamics and has important conservation implications, as sex differences in foraging ecology may affect vulnerability to area-specific human activities. Although behavioural ecologists have proposed numerous hypotheses for this phenomenon, the underlying causes of sexual segregation are poorly understood. We examined the size-dimorphism and niche divergence hypotheses as potential explanations for sexual segregation in the New Zealand (NZ sea lion (Phocarctos hookeri, a nationally critical, declining species impacted by trawl fisheries. We used satellite telemetry and linear mixed effects models to investigate sex differences in the foraging ranges of juvenile NZ sea lions. Male trip distances and durations were almost twice as long as female trips, with males foraging over the Auckland Island shelf and in further locations than females. Sex was the most important variable in trip distance, maximum distance travelled from study site, foraging cycle duration and percent time at sea whereas mass and age had small effects on these characteristics. Our findings support the predictions of the niche divergence hypothesis, which suggests that sexual segregation acts to decrease intraspecific resource competition. As a consequence of sexual segregation in foraging ranges, female foraging grounds had proportionally double the overlap with fisheries operations than males. This distribution exposes female juvenile NZ sea lions to a greater risk of resource competition and bycatch from fisheries than males, which can result in higher female mortality. Such sex-biased mortality could impact population dynamics, because female population decline can lead to decreased population fecundity. Thus, effective conservation and management strategies must take into account

  19. Adapted to change: Low energy requirements in a low and unpredictable productivity environment, the case of the Galapagos sea lion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villegas-Amtmann, Stella; McDonald, Birgitte I.; Páez-Rosas, Diego; Aurioles-Gamboa, David; Costa, Daniel P.

    2017-06-01

    The rate of energy expenditure and acquisition are fundamental components of an animals' life history. Within mammals, the otariids (sea lions and fur seals) exhibit energetically expensive life styles, which can be challenging in equatorial regions where resources are particularly limited and unpredictable. To better understand how this energetically expensive life history pattern functions in an energetically challenging equatorial system, we concurrently measured the field metabolic rate (FMR) and foraging behavior of lactating Galapagos sea lions (GSL) rearing pups and yearlings. Females with pups tended to forage to the north, diving deeper, epi and mesopelagically compared to females with yearlings, which foraged to the west and performed dives to the sea bed that were shallower. FMR did not differ between females with pups or yearlings but, increased significantly with % time spent at-sea. Females with yearlings had higher water influx, suggesting greater food intake, but had lower body condition. The FMR (4.08±0.6 W/kg) of GSL is the lowest measured for any otariid, but is consistent with Galapagos fur seals which also exhibit low FMR. The observation that these two otariids have reduced energy requirements is consistent with an adaptation to the reduced prey availability of the Galapagos marine environment compared to other more productive marine systems.

  20. Fin whales and microplastics: The Mediterranean Sea and the Sea of Cortez scenarios.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fossi, Maria Cristina; Marsili, Letizia; Baini, Matteo; Giannetti, Matteo; Coppola, Daniele; Guerranti, Cristiana; Caliani, Ilaria; Minutoli, Roberta; Lauriano, Giancarlo; Finoia, Maria Grazia; Rubegni, Fabrizio; Panigada, Simone; Bérubé, Martine; Urbán Ramírez, Jorge; Panti, Cristina

    2016-02-01

    The impact that microplastics have on baleen whales is a question that remains largely unexplored. This study examined the interaction between free-ranging fin whales (Balaenoptera physalus) and microplastics by comparing populations living in two semi-enclosed basins, the Mediterranean Sea and the Sea of Cortez (Gulf of California, Mexico). The results indicate that a considerable abundance of microplastics and plastic additives exists in the neustonic samples from Pelagos Sanctuary of the Mediterranean Sea, and that pelagic areas containing high densities of microplastics overlap with whale feeding grounds, suggesting that whales are exposed to microplastics during foraging; this was confirmed by the observation of a temporal increase in toxicological stress in whales. Given the abundance of microplastics in the Mediterranean environment, along with the high concentrations of Persistent Bioaccumulative and Toxic (PBT) chemicals, plastic additives and biomarker responses detected in the biopsies of Mediterranean whales as compared to those in whales inhabiting the Sea of Cortez, we believe that exposure to microplastics because of direct ingestion and consumption of contaminated prey poses a major threat to the health of fin whales in the Mediterranean Sea. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. The Mediterranean Sea Mollusks - a school shell collection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marcu, Delia

    2017-04-01

    School: 1. "Ana Aslan" Technical College, Street Decebal 1, Cluj-Napoca, Romania 2. Orthodox Theological Seminary, Avram Iancu Square No.18, Cluj-Napoca, Romania The aim of the present project is to develop the students awareness of human activities impact on mollusks population in the Mediterranean Sea. Students have studied about the Geography of the Mediterranean Sea and they have the theoretical knowledge related to the its specific flora and fauna. One of the main fears related to the Mediterranean Sea is the loss of marine and coastal biodiversity due to biological disturbance, climate change and human activities. Out of all reasons, the human impact is considered to be the major cause of habitat loss, degradation and extinction. Regarding the Phylum Mollusca a major threat is represented by unregulated fisheries and shell traffic. In order to enable the students possibility to observe the great diversity of the Phylum Mollusca in the Mediterranean Sea, a school shell collection was made. The shells were brought by the students and they had to mention if the shells were bought, received as a souvenir or picked from their environment. Further, the students learned how to prepare the shells for the collection. The next step involved the shell classification and by this activity the students learned how to use the IUCN: International Union for Conservation of Nature database to identify the threatened species, as well as the World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) for a correct identification of the species. As Romania romania bordering the Black Sea, the students had the opportunity to identify the mollusks species common for both the Mediterranean Sea and the Black Sea. The objectives of this study were to highlight the human-environment relation and the interconnection between environment conditions and life quality, to develop the students research, exploration and investigation skills, to be able to identify the causes of species extinction and methods

  2. 2,3,7,8-Substituted PCDDs and PCDFs in sea lion (Otaria flavescens) skin biopsies from two South-western Atlantic populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jimènez, B; Gonzàlez, M J; Hernández, L M; Eljarrat, E; Rivera, J; Fossi, M C

    1999-02-01

    Congener specific 2,3,7,8-chlorinated PCDDs and PCDFs were determined in skin biopsies taken from sea lions (Otaria flavescens) living in two areas of the South-western Atlantic on the coast of Argentina (Mar del Plata and Punta Bermeja). This is the first report on PCDDs and PCDFs in sea lion skin biopsies from the southern hemisphere. Differences were found in the congener pattern according to the sampling area. Animals living in the polluted area (Mar del Plata harbour) had detectable levels of all seventeen 2,3,7,8-substituted congeners. Sea lions living in a control environment (Punta Bermeja, Patagonia) only exhibited 5 detectable congeners out of all seventeen 2,3,7,8-substituted congeners. However, total levels were low in both colonies studied. These data are consistent with previous work which has indicated that dioxins occur at relatively low levels in marine mammals, possibly due to rapid catabolism or elimination.

  3. Life begins when the sea lion is ashore: microhabitat use by a louse living on a diving mammal host.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leonardi, M S; Crespo, E A; Vales, D G; Feijoo, M; Raga, J A; Aznar, F J

    2012-08-01

    Among Anoplura, the family Echinophthiriidae includes species that infest pinnipeds and otters. Previous evidence obtained from pinnipeds infested by echinophthiriids, specifically from seals, indicates that flippers are the preferred infestation sites, while lice from fur seals select areas in the pelage. We studied habitat selection of Antarctophthirus microchir on South American sea lion pups (Otaria flavescens Shaw, 1800) from Patagonia, Argentina, during the austral summer of 2009. We found a clear pattern of habitat selection: eggs are laid on the dorsal surface; nymphs 1 hatch there and then migrate to the belly, where they develop into adults and copulate; and then ovigerous females return to the dorsal surface. On the one hand, nymphs 1 are characterised by their low locomotory ability; therefore, the fact that they migrate as soon as they hatch suggests a clear pressure leading to microhabitat restriction. On the other hand, the described pattern of microhabitat selection seems to respond to the physiological requirements of each stage, which vary according to the physiological process considered, e.g. oviposition, morphogenesis, hatching and development. Accordingly, it appears that A. microchir would prefer the host's ventral area for development and copulation and the dorsal area for oviposition. However, the causes of this pattern are not clear, and many factors could be involved. Considering that sea lion pups periodically soak at high tides, and that prolonged immersion and very high humidity are known to be lethal for lice eggs, selecting the dorsal area would be advantageous for oviposition because it dries much faster. Furthermore, because humidity should be retained for longer periods on the ventral surface of the pup, wetter conditions on the sea lion would prevent desiccation of the nymphs in the very arid environment where O. flavescens breeds.

  4. The effects of birth weight and maternal care on survival of juvenile Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John M Maniscalco

    Full Text Available Steller sea lions were listed as endangered following a collapse of the western distinct population beginning in the late 1970s. Low juvenile survival has been implicated as a factor in the decline. I conducted a multistate mark-recapture analysis to estimate juvenile survival in an area of the western population where sea lions are showing signs of recovery. Survival for males and females was 80% between 3 weeks and 1 year of age. Approximately 20% of juveniles continued to be nursed by their mothers between ages 1 and 2 and 10% between ages 2 and 3. Survival for juveniles that suckled beyond 1 year was 88.2% and 89.9% to ages 2 and 3, respectively. In contrast, survival for individuals weaned by age 1 was 40.6% for males and 64.2% for females between ages 1 and 2. Birth mass positively influenced survival for juveniles weaned at age 1 but had little effect on individuals continuing to suckle. Cumulative survival to age 4 was double that estimated during the population decline in this region. Evidence suggests that western Steller sea lions utilize a somewhat different maternal strategy than those in the eastern distinct population. Western adult females generally invest more in their pups during the first year but wean offspring by age 1 more often. This results in better survival to age 1, but greater mortality between ages 1 and 3 compared to the eastern population. Different maternal strategies may reflect density dependent pressures of populations at opposite levels of abundance.

  5. The role of domoic acid in abortion and premature parturition of California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) on San Miguel Island, California.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldstein, Tracey; Zabka, Tanja S; Delong, Robert L; Wheeler, Elizabeth A; Ylitalo, Gina; Bargu, Sibel; Silver, Mary; Leighfield, Tod; Van Dolah, Frances; Langlois, Gregg; Sidor, Inga; Dunn, J Lawrence; Gulland, Frances M D

    2009-01-01

    Domoic acid is a glutaminergic neurotoxin produced by marine algae such as Pseudo-nitzschia australis. California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) ingest the toxin when foraging on planktivorous fish. Adult females comprise 60% of stranded animals admitted for rehabilitation due to acute domoic acid toxicosis and commonly suffer from reproductive failure, including abortions and premature live births. Domoic acid has been shown to cross the placenta exposing the fetus to the toxin. To determine whether domoic acid was playing a role in reproductive failure in sea lion rookeries, 67 aborted and live-born premature pups were sampled on San Miguel Island in 2005 and 2006 to investigate the causes for reproductive failure. Analyses included domoic acid, contaminant and infectious disease testing, and histologic examination. Pseudo-nitzschia spp. were present both in the environment and in sea lion feces, and domoic acid was detected in the sea lion feces and in 17% of pup samples tested. Histopathologic findings included systemic and localized inflammation and bacterial infections of amniotic origin, placental abruption, and brain edema. The primary lesion in five animals with measurable domoic acid concentrations was brain edema, a common finding and, in some cases, the only lesion observed in aborted premature pups born to domoic acid-intoxicated females in rehabilitation. Blubber organochlorine concentrations were lower than those measured previously in premature sea lion pups collected in the 1970s. While the etiology of abortion and premature parturition was varied in this study, these results suggest that domoic acid contributes to reproductive failure on California sea lion rookeries.

  6. Predicting synergistic effects of resources and predators on foraging decisions by juvenile Steller sea lions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frid, Alejandro; Burns, Jennifer; Baker, Gregory G; Thorne, Richard E

    2009-01-01

    Many theoretical and experimental studies suggest that synergistic interactions between resources and predators influence foraging decisions and their fitness consequences. This framework, however, has been ignored almost completely by hypotheses on causes of the population decline of Steller sea lions (SSLs) (Eumetopias jubatus) in western Alaska. By comparing predictions from a dynamic state variable model to empirical data on the behaviour of individuals instrumented with satellite-linked time-at-depth recorders, we develop and find preliminary support for the hypothesis that, during winter in Prince William Sound, juvenile SSLs (a) underutilise walleye pollock, a predictable resource in deep strata, due to predation risk from Pacific sleeper sharks, and (b) underutilise the potential energy bonanza of inshore aggregations of Pacific herring due to risk from either killer whales, larger conspecifics, or both. Further, under conditions of resource scarcity-induced by overfishing, long-term oceanographic cycles, or their combination-trade-offs between mortality risk and energy gain may influence demographic parameters. Accordingly, computer simulations illustrated the theoretical plausibility that a decline of Pacific herring in shallow strata would greatly increase the number of deep foraging dives, thereby increasing exposure to sleeper sharks and mortality rates. These results suggest that hypotheses on the decline of SSLs should consider synergistic effects of predators and resources on behaviour and mortality rates. Empirical support for our model, however, is limited and we outline tasks for empirical research that emerge from these limitations. More generally, in the context of today's conservation crises, our work illustrates that the greater the dearth of system-specific data, the greater the need to apply principles of behavioural ecology toward the understanding and management of large-scale marine systems.

  7. Weak polygyny in California sea lions and the potential for alternative mating tactics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flatz, Ramona; González-Suárez, Manuela; Young, Julie K; Hernández-Camacho, Claudia J; Immel, Aaron J; Gerber, Leah R

    2012-01-01

    Female aggregation and male territoriality are considered to be hallmarks of polygynous mating systems. The development of genetic parentage assignment has called into question the accuracy of behavioral traits in predicting true mating systems. In this study we use 14 microsatellite markers to explore the mating system of one of the most behaviorally polygynous species, the California sea lion (Zalophus californianus). We sampled a total of 158 female-pup pairs and 99 territorial males across two breeding rookeries (San Jorge and Los Islotes) in the Gulf of California, Mexico. Fathers could be identified for 30% of pups sampled at San Jorge across three breeding seasons and 15% of sampled pups at Los Islotes across two breeding seasons. Analysis of paternal relatedness between the pups for which no fathers were identified (sampled over four breeding seasons at San Jorge and two at Los Islotes) revealed that few pups were likely to share a father. Thirty-one percent of the sampled males on San Jorge and 15% of the sampled males on Los Islotes were assigned at least one paternity. With one exception, no male was identified as the father of more than two pups. Furthermore, at Los Islotes rookery there were significantly fewer pups assigned paternity than expected given the pool of sampled males (pbehavior associated with strongly polygynous mating. Low variation in male reproductive success may result from heightened mobility among receptive females in the Gulf of California, which reduces the ability of males to monopolize groups of females. Our results raise important questions regarding the adaptive role of territoriality and the potential for alternative mating tactics in this species.

  8. Weak polygyny in California sea lions and the potential for alternative mating tactics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramona Flatz

    Full Text Available Female aggregation and male territoriality are considered to be hallmarks of polygynous mating systems. The development of genetic parentage assignment has called into question the accuracy of behavioral traits in predicting true mating systems. In this study we use 14 microsatellite markers to explore the mating system of one of the most behaviorally polygynous species, the California sea lion (Zalophus californianus. We sampled a total of 158 female-pup pairs and 99 territorial males across two breeding rookeries (San Jorge and Los Islotes in the Gulf of California, Mexico. Fathers could be identified for 30% of pups sampled at San Jorge across three breeding seasons and 15% of sampled pups at Los Islotes across two breeding seasons. Analysis of paternal relatedness between the pups for which no fathers were identified (sampled over four breeding seasons at San Jorge and two at Los Islotes revealed that few pups were likely to share a father. Thirty-one percent of the sampled males on San Jorge and 15% of the sampled males on Los Islotes were assigned at least one paternity. With one exception, no male was identified as the father of more than two pups. Furthermore, at Los Islotes rookery there were significantly fewer pups assigned paternity than expected given the pool of sampled males (p<0.0001. Overall, we found considerably lower variation in male reproductive success than expected in a species that exhibits behavior associated with strongly polygynous mating. Low variation in male reproductive success may result from heightened mobility among receptive females in the Gulf of California, which reduces the ability of males to monopolize groups of females. Our results raise important questions regarding the adaptive role of territoriality and the potential for alternative mating tactics in this species.

  9. Benefits of the Mediterranean diet beyond the Mediterranean Sea and beyond food patterns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez-González, Miguel A

    2016-10-14

    Abundant and growing evidence has accrued to demonstrate that the traditional Mediterranean diet is likely to be the ideal dietary pattern for the prevention of cardiovascular disease. A landmark randomized trial (PREDIMED) together with many well-conducted long-term observational prospective cohort studies support this causal effect.A new, large British cohort study by Tong et al. assessing the association between adherence to the Mediterranean diet and cardiovascular disease was recently published in BMC Medicine. Using a superb methodology, they followed-up 23,902 participants for 12.2 years on average and observed several thousand incident cases.The results of this cohort study showed a significant beneficial effect of the Mediterranean diet on cardiovascular events. These findings support the transferability of this dietary pattern beyond the shores of the Mediterranean Sea. The authors provided measures of population impact in cardiovascular prevention and estimated that 19,375 cases of cardiovascular death would be prevented each year in the UK by promoting the Mediterranean Diet.Please see related article: http://bmcmedicine.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12916-016-0677-4 .

  10. Circulation in the Southeastern Mediterranean Sea (EGITTO-NICOP)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-06-07

    variability in the southeastern Mediterranean waters using low- cost satellite-tracked drifters in concert with satellite observations of sea surface...provision of law, no person shall be subject to a penalty for failing to comply with a collection of information if it does not display a currently valid OMB...eddy diffusivities will be estimated. • compare the drifter-inferred currents to SST/pigment structures obtained from satellite data. Images and

  11. Isotopic niches of fin whales from the Mediterranean Sea and the Celtic Sea (North Atlantic).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das, Krishna; Holleville, Ophélie; Ryan, Conor; Berrow, Simon; Gilles, Anita; Ody, Denis; Michel, Loïc N

    2017-06-01

    The fin whale (Balaenoptera physalus) is the most abundant and widespread mysticete species in the Mediterranean Sea, found mostly in deep, offshore waters of the western and central portion of the region. In the Mediterranean, this species is known to feed mainly on krill, in contrast to its Atlantic counterpart, which displays a more diversified diet. The International Whaling Commission recognizes several managements units in the Atlantic and the Mediterranean Sea and the connectivity between these populations is still being debated. Questions remain about inter-individual feeding strategies and trophic ecology. The goal of this study was to compare isotopic niches of fin whales from the Mediterranean Sea and the Celtic Sea (North Atlantic). δ(13)C and δ(15)N values were analysed in 136 skin biopsies from free-ranging Mediterranean fin whales sampled in 2010 and 2011 during campaigns at sea. δ(13)C and δ(15)N values ranged from -20.4 to -17.1‰ and from 5.9 to 8.9‰, respectively. These values are in good agreement with those estimated previously from baleen plates from Mediterranean and North Atlantic fin whales. The narrow isotopic niche width of the Mediterranean fin whale (Standard Ellipses area SEAc) compared to the North Atlantic fin whale raises many concerns in the context of global changes and long-term consequences. One could indeed expect that species displaying narrow niches would be more susceptible to ecosystem fragmentation and other anthropogenic impacts. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. The Biodiversity of the Mediterranean Sea: Estimates, Patterns, and Threats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coll, Marta; Piroddi, Chiara; Steenbeek, Jeroen; Kaschner, Kristin; Ben Rais Lasram, Frida; Aguzzi, Jacopo; Ballesteros, Enric; Bianchi, Carlo Nike; Corbera, Jordi; Dailianis, Thanos; Danovaro, Roberto; Estrada, Marta; Froglia, Carlo; Galil, Bella S.; Gasol, Josep M.; Gertwagen, Ruthy; Gil, João; Guilhaumon, François; Kesner-Reyes, Kathleen; Kitsos, Miltiadis-Spyridon; Koukouras, Athanasios; Lampadariou, Nikolaos; Laxamana, Elijah; López-Fé de la Cuadra, Carlos M.; Lotze, Heike K.; Martin, Daniel; Mouillot, David; Oro, Daniel; Raicevich, Saša; Rius-Barile, Josephine; Saiz-Salinas, Jose Ignacio; San Vicente, Carles; Somot, Samuel; Templado, José; Turon, Xavier; Vafidis, Dimitris; Villanueva, Roger; Voultsiadou, Eleni

    2010-01-01

    The Mediterranean Sea is a marine biodiversity hot spot. Here we combined an extensive literature analysis with expert opinions to update publicly available estimates of major taxa in this marine ecosystem and to revise and update several species lists. We also assessed overall spatial and temporal patterns of species diversity and identified major changes and threats. Our results listed approximately 17,000 marine species occurring in the Mediterranean Sea. However, our estimates of marine diversity are still incomplete as yet—undescribed species will be added in the future. Diversity for microbes is substantially underestimated, and the deep-sea areas and portions of the southern and eastern region are still poorly known. In addition, the invasion of alien species is a crucial factor that will continue to change the biodiversity of the Mediterranean, mainly in its eastern basin that can spread rapidly northwards and westwards due to the warming of the Mediterranean Sea. Spatial patterns showed a general decrease in biodiversity from northwestern to southeastern regions following a gradient of production, with some exceptions and caution due to gaps in our knowledge of the biota along the southern and eastern rims. Biodiversity was also generally higher in coastal areas and continental shelves, and decreases with depth. Temporal trends indicated that overexploitation and habitat loss have been the main human drivers of historical changes in biodiversity. At present, habitat loss and degradation, followed by fishing impacts, pollution, climate change, eutrophication, and the establishment of alien species are the most important threats and affect the greatest number of taxonomic groups. All these impacts are expected to grow in importance in the future, especially climate change and habitat degradation. The spatial identification of hot spots highlighted the ecological importance of most of the western Mediterranean shelves (and in particular, the Strait of

  13. The biodiversity of the Mediterranean Sea: estimates, patterns, and threats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marta Coll

    Full Text Available The Mediterranean Sea is a marine biodiversity hot spot. Here we combined an extensive literature analysis with expert opinions to update publicly available estimates of major taxa in this marine ecosystem and to revise and update several species lists. We also assessed overall spatial and temporal patterns of species diversity and identified major changes and threats. Our results listed approximately 17,000 marine species occurring in the Mediterranean Sea. However, our estimates of marine diversity are still incomplete as yet-undescribed species will be added in the future. Diversity for microbes is substantially underestimated, and the deep-sea areas and portions of the southern and eastern region are still poorly known. In addition, the invasion of alien species is a crucial factor that will continue to change the biodiversity of the Mediterranean, mainly in its eastern basin that can spread rapidly northwards and westwards due to the warming of the Mediterranean Sea. Spatial patterns showed a general decrease in biodiversity from northwestern to southeastern regions following a gradient of production, with some exceptions and caution due to gaps in our knowledge of the biota along the southern and eastern rims. Biodiversity was also generally higher in coastal areas and continental shelves, and decreases with depth. Temporal trends indicated that overexploitation and habitat loss have been the main human drivers of historical changes in biodiversity. At present, habitat loss and degradation, followed by fishing impacts, pollution, climate change, eutrophication, and the establishment of alien species are the most important threats and affect the greatest number of taxonomic groups. All these impacts are expected to grow in importance in the future, especially climate change and habitat degradation. The spatial identification of hot spots highlighted the ecological importance of most of the western Mediterranean shelves (and in particular

  14. Common littoral pycnogonids of the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tobias Lehmann

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available In the present study 21 littoral pycnogonid species from 5 families are analysed: Ammotheidae (9 species, Callipallenidae (5 species, Endeidae (2 species, Phoxichilidiidae (3 species, and Pycnogonidae (2 species. The material was mainly taken from Mediterranean pycnogonid collections housed in the Bavarian State Collection of Zoology. Additional material was collected during field trips. Altogether the material was obtained from six different locations: Banyuls-sur-Mer (France, Tavolara Island (Italy, Elba Island (Italy, Giglio Island (Italy, Sicily Island (Italy, and Istria Peninsula (Croatia. The animals were studied in detail with a scanning electron microscope (SEM. Additionally series of light microscopic pictures were made to generate extended depth of field pictures of whole animals. The observed features are compared with previous literature.

  15. The Cystoseira spp. Communities from the Aegean Sea (NE Mediterranean

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. MONTESANTO

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available A synthetic study of qualitative and quantitative data from some algal communities dominated by different species of the genus Cystoseira has been carried out in three coastal areas of the Aegean Sea. Seasonal samples were taken from 10 stations and a list of 30 species presenting coverage values > 1% was dressed. Ecological indices, such as Shannon Diversity Index, Pielou Eveness and Bray-Curtis Similarity Index were calculate using the PRIMER software. The results from the Aegean Sea were compared with other Mediterranean areas, and the use of Cystoseira communities as ecological quality indicators was discussed.

  16. MANAGEMENT OF ACUTE RENAL FAILURE WITH DELAYED HYPERCALCEMIA SECONDARY TO SARCOCYSTIS NEURONA-INDUCED MYOSITIS AND RHABDOMYOLYSIS IN A CALIFORNIA SEA LION (ZALOPHUS CALIFORNIANUS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alexander, Amy B; Hanley, Christopher S; Duncan, Mary C; Ulmer, Kyle; Padilla, Luis R

    2015-09-01

    A 3-yr-old captive-born California sea lion (Zalophus californianus) developed Sarcocystis neurona-induced myositis and rhabdomyolysis that led to acute renal failure. The sea lion was successfully managed with fluid therapy, antiprotozoals, antibiotics, anti-inflammatories, antiemetics, gastroprotectants, and diuretics, but developed severe delayed hypercalcemia, a syndrome identified in humans after traumatic or exertion-induced rhabdomyolysis. Treatment with calcitonin was added to the management, and the individual recovered fully. The case emphasizes that animals with rhabdomyolysis-induced renal failure risk developing delayed hypercalcemia, which may be life threatening, and calcium levels should be closely monitored past the resolution of renal failure.

  17. Sedimentary Markers : a window into deep geodynamic processes Examples from the Western Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rabineau, Marina; Aslanian, Daniel; Leroux, Estelle; Pellen, Romain; Gorini, Christian; Moulin, Maryline; Droz, Laurence; Bache, Francois; Molliex, Stephane; Silenzario, Carmine; Rubino, Jean-Loup

    2017-04-01

    Deep Earth dynamics impact so strongly on surface geological processes that we can use sediment palaeo-markers as a window into the deeper Earth. Derived from climatic and tectonic erosive actions on the continents, and related to eustasy, subsidence and isostasy, the sediment in a deep basin is the main recorder of these processes. Nevertheless, defining and quantifying the relative roles of parameters that interact to give the final sedimentary architecture is not a simple task. Using a 3D-grid of seismic and wide-angle data, boreholes and numerical stratigraphic modelling, we propose here a quantification of post-rift vertical movements in the Provençal Basin (Western Mediterranean) involving three domains of subsidence: seaward tilting on the platform and the slope and purely vertical subsidence in the deep basin (Rabineau et al., 2014 ; Leroux et al., 2015). These domains fit the deeper crustal domains highlighted by previous geophysical data (Moulin et al., 2015 ; Afilhado et al., 2015). Post-break-up sedimentary markers may therefore be used to identify the initial hinge lines of the rifting phase, to quantify sedimentation rates and isostatic rebound (Rabineau et al., 2014) and redefine the subsidence laws. Similar work and results are obtained in the Valencia Basin (Pellen et al., 2016). This Western Mediterranean Sea is a natural laboratory with very high total subsidence rates that enable high sedimentation rates along the margin with sediments provided by the Rhône and Ebro rivers flowing from the Alps, the Pyrennees and Catalan chains, which in turn archives the detailed record of climate/tectonic evolution during the Neogene. The Western Mediterranean Sea could therefore further probe deep-earth and surface connections using deep drillings of this land-locked ocean basin transformed into a giant saline basin (Rabineau et al., 2015). Leroux, E., Aslanian, D., Rabineau, M., M. Moulin, D. Granjeon, C. Gorini, L. Droz, 2015. Sedimentary markers: a

  18. Zooplankton community response to the winter 2013 deep convection process in the NW Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donoso, Katty; Carlotti, François; Pagano, Marc; Hunt, Brian P. V.; Escribano, Rubén.; Berline, Léo.

    2017-03-01

    The Gulf of Lion is an important area of deep convection, where intense winter vertical mixing brings nutrients up from deeper layers, promoting the largest bloom in the Mediterranean at the end of winter/early spring. The DEWEX program conducted cruises in February and April 2013 to investigate the ecosystem level impacts of deep water convection. Zooplankton data were collected through net sampling and imaging with an Underwater Vision Profiler. In winter, low zooplankton abundance and biomass were observed in the Deep Convection Zone (DCZ) and higher values on its periphery. In spring, this pattern reversed with high biomass in the DCZ and lower values on the periphery. On average for the whole area, the potential grazing impact was estimated to increase by one order of magnitude from winter to spring. In April, all areas except the DCZ incurred top-down control by zooplankton on the phytoplankton stock. In the DCZ, the chlorophyll-a values remained high despite the high zooplankton biomass and carbon demand, indicating a sustained bottom-up control. The zooplankton community composition was comparable for both periods, typified by high copepod dominance, but with some differences between the DCZ and peripheral regions. In spring the DCZ was characterized by a strong increase in herbivorous species such as Centropages typicus and Calanus helgolandicus, and an increase in the number of large zooplankton individuals. Our study indicates that the DCZ is likely an area of both enhanced energy transfer to higher trophic levels and organic matter export in the North Western Mediterranean Sea.

  19. Long-period sea-level variations in the Mediterranean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zerbini, Susanna; Raicich, Fabio; Bruni, Sara; del Conte, Sara; Errico, Maddalena; Prati, Claudio; Santi, Efisio

    2016-04-01

    Since the beginning of its long-lasting lifetime, the Wegener initiative has devoted careful consideration to studying sea-level variations/changes across the Mediterranean Sea. Our study focuses on several long-period sea-level time series (from end of 1800 to 2012) acquired in the Mediterranean by tide gauge stations. In general, the analysis and interpretation of these data sets can provide an important contribution to research on climate change and its impacts. We have analyzed the centennial sea-level time series of six fairly well documented tide gauges. They are: Marseille, in France, Alicante in Spain, Genoa, Trieste, Venice and Marina di Ravenna (formerly Porto Corsini), in Italy. The data of the Italian stations of Marina di Ravenna and Venice clearly indicate that land subsidence is responsible for most of the observed rate of relative sea level rise. It is well known that, in the two areas, subsidence is caused by both natural processes and human activities. For these two stations, using levelling data of benchmarks at, and/or close to, the tide gauges, and for the recent years, also GPS and InSAR height time series, modelling of the long-period non-linear behavior of subsidence was successfully accomplished. After removing the land vertical motions, the estimate of the linear long-period sea-level rise at all six stations yielded remarkably consistent values, between +1,2 and +1,3 mm/yr, with associated errors ranging from ±0,2 to ±0,3 mm/yr (95% confidence interval), which also account for the statistical autocorrelation of the time series. These trends in the Mediterranean area are lower than the global mean rate of 1,7±0,2 mm/yr (1901-2010) presented by the IPCC in its 5th Assessment Report; however, they are in full agreement with a global mean sea-level rise estimate, over the period 1901-1990, recently published by Hay et al. (2015, doi:10.1038/nature14093) and obtained using probabilistic techniques that combine sea-level records with physics

  20. Seasonal sea level extremes in the Mediterranean Sea and at the Atlantic European coasts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. N. Tsimplis

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Hourly sea level data from tide gauges and a barotropic model are used to explore the spatial and temporal variability of sea level extremes in the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic coasts of the Iberian peninsula on seasonal time scales. Significant spatial variability is identified in the observations in all seasons. The Atlantic stations show larger extreme values than the Mediterranean Sea primarily due to the tidal signal. When the tidal signal is removed most stations have maximum values of less than 90 cm occurring in winter or autumn. The maxima in spring and summer are less than 60 cm in most stations. The wind and atmospheric forcing contributes about 50 cm in the winter and between 20–40 cm in the other seasons. In the western Mediterranean the observed extreme values are less than 50 cm, except near the Strait of Gibraltar. Direct atmospheric forcing contributes significantly to sea level extremes. Maximum sea level values due to atmospheric forcing reach in some stations 45 cm during the winter. During the summer the contribution of the direct atmospheric forcing is between 10–20 cm. The Adriatic Sea shows a resonant behaviour with maximum extreme observed sea level values around 200 cm found at the northern part. Trends in the 99.9% percentiles are present in several areas, however most of them are removed when the 50% percentile is subtracted indicating that changes in the extremes are in line with mean sea level change. The North Atlantic Oscillation and the Mediterranean Oscillation Index are well correlated with the changes in the 99.9% winter values in the Atlantic, western Mediterranean and the Adriatic stations. The correlation of the NAO and the MOI indices in the Atlantic and western Mediterranean is significant in the autumn too. The correlations between the NAO and MOI index and the changes in the sea level extremes become insignificant when the 50% percentile is removed indicating again that changes in extremes

  1. Excess of {sup 236}U in the northwest Mediterranean Sea

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chamizo, E., E-mail: echamizo@us.es [Centro Nacional de Aceleradores, Universidad de Sevilla, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Junta de Andalucía, Thomas Alva Edison 7, 41092 Seville (Spain); López-Lora, M., E-mail: mlopezlora@us.es [Centro Nacional de Aceleradores, Universidad de Sevilla, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Junta de Andalucía, Thomas Alva Edison 7, 41092 Seville (Spain); Bressac, M., E-mail: matthieu.bressac@utas.edu.au [IAEA-Environment Laboratories, Monte Carlo 98000 (Monaco); Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies, University of Tasmania, Hobart, TAS (Australia); Levy, I., E-mail: I.N.Levy@iaea.org [IAEA-Environment Laboratories, Monte Carlo 98000 (Monaco); Pham, M.K., E-mail: M.Pham@iaea.org [IAEA-Environment Laboratories, Monte Carlo 98000 (Monaco)

    2016-09-15

    In this work, we present first {sup 236}U results in the northwestern Mediterranean. {sup 236}U is studied in a seawater column sampled at DYFAMED (Dynamics of Atmospheric Fluxes in the Mediterranean Sea) station (Ligurian Sea, 43°25′N, 07°52′E). The obtained {sup 236}U/{sup 238}U atom ratios in the dissolved phase, ranging from about 2 × 10{sup −9} at 100 m depth to about 1.5 × 10{sup −9} at 2350 m depth, indicate that anthropogenic {sup 236}U dominates the whole seawater column. The corresponding deep-water column inventory (12.6 ng/m{sup 2} or 32.1 × 10{sup 12} atoms/m{sup 2}) exceeds by a factor of 2.5 the expected one for global fallout at similar latitudes (5 ng/m{sup 2} or 13 × 10{sup 12} atoms/m{sup 2}), evidencing the influence of local or regional {sup 236}U sources in the western Mediterranean basin. On the other hand, the input of {sup 236}U associated to Saharan dust outbreaks is evaluated. An additional {sup 236}U annual deposition of about 0.2 pg/m{sup 2} based on the study of atmospheric particles collected in Monaco during different Saharan dust intrusions is estimated. The obtained results in the corresponding suspended solids collected at DYFAMED station indicate that about 64% of that {sup 236}U stays in solution in seawater. Overall, this source accounts for about 0.1% of the {sup 236}U inventory excess observed at DYFAMED station. The influence of the so-called Chernobyl fallout and the radioactive effluents produced by the different nuclear installations allocated to the Mediterranean basin, might explain the inventory gap, however, further studies are necessary to come to a conclusion about its origin. - Highlights: • First {sup 236}U results in the northwest Mediterranean Sea are reported. • Anthropogenic {sup 236}U dominates the whole seawater column at DYFAMED station. • {sup 236}U deep-water column inventory exceeds by a factor of 2.5 the global fallout one. • Saharan dust intrusions are responsible for an annual

  2. DISCOVERY OF THREE NOVEL COCCIDIAN PARASITES INFECTING CALIFORNIA SEA LIONS (ZALOPHUS CALIFORNIANUS), WITH EVIDENCE OF SEXUAL REPLICATION AND INTERSPECIES PATHOGENICITY

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colegrove, Kathleen M.; Grigg, Michael E.; Carlson-Bremer, Daphne; Miller, Robin H.; Gulland, Frances M. D.; Ferguson, David J. P.; Rejmanek, Daniel; Barr, Bradd C.; Nordhausen, Robert; Melli, Ann C.; Conrad, Patricia A.

    2016-01-01

    Enteric protozoal infection was identified in 5 stranded California sea lions (Zalophus californianus). Microscopically, the apical cytoplasm of distal jejunal enterocytes contained multiple stages of coccidian parasites, including schizonts with merozoites and spherical gametocytes, which were morphologically similar to coccidians. By histopathology, organisms appeared to be confined to the intestine and accompanied by only mild enteritis. Using electron microscopy, both sexual (microgametocytes, macrogamonts) and asexual (schizonts, merozoites) coccidian stages were identified in enterocytes within parasitophorous vacuoles, consistent with apicomplexan development in a definitive host. Serology was negative for tissue cyst-forming coccidians, and immunohistochemistry for Toxoplasma gondii was inconclusive and negative for Neospora caninum and Sarcocystis neurona. Analysis of ITS-1 gene sequences amplified from frozen or formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded intestinal sections identified DNA sequences with closest homology to Neospora sp. (80%); these novel sequences were referred to as belonging to coccidian parasites ‘‘A,’’ ‘‘B,’’ and ‘‘C.’’ Subsequent molecular analyses completed on a neonatal harbor seal (Phoca vitulina) with protozoal lymphadenitis, hepatitis, myocarditis, and encephalitis showed that it was infected with a coccidian parasite bearing the ‘‘C’’ sequence type. Our results indicate that sea lions likely serve as definitive hosts for 3 newly described coccidian parasites, at least 1 of which is pathogenic in a marine mammal intermediate host species. PMID:21495828

  3. Male reproductive success and its behavioural correlates in a polygynous mammal, the Galápagos sea lion (Zalophus wollebaeki).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pörschmann, Ulrich; Trillmich, Fritz; Mueller, Birte; Wolf, Jochen B W

    2010-06-01

    Sexual selection theory predicts competitive males and choosy females. Nevertheless, since molecular marker-based studies, paternity outside the expected mating patterns has increasingly been described. Even in highly polygynous systems, where paternity is expected to be strongly skewed towards large, dominant males, alternative mating tactics have been suggested. We examined reproductive success in the polygynous Galápagos sea lion (Zalophus wollebaeki). Semiaquatic territoriality allows females to move freely and may lower the degree of polygyny otherwise suggested by both territorial behaviour and strong sexual dimorphism. We assigned paternities with 22 microsatellites and analysed how male reproductive success was related to size, dominance status, intra-sexual agonistic behaviour, proximity to females, and attendance in the colony. Male behaviour was consistent across two seasons for all parameters under consideration. Attendance was by far the most important determinant of paternal success. Skew in reproductive success towards large, dominant males was weak and dominance status played no role. This appears to be caused by an extremely long reproductive season lasting five or more months, making it difficult for any male to monopolize receptive females. Females seem to choose displaying males that were present in the colony for a long time rather than dominance per se. Sexual dimorphism in Galápagos sea lions may thus be more influenced by selection for fasting than fighting ability. Our data provide further evidence for alternative mating tactics, as several males gained relatively high reproductive success despite short attendance and hardly any involvement in agonistic interactions.

  4. Morphology of the lingual surface of South American fur seal (Arctocephalus australis) and sea lion (Otaria flavescens).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erdoğan, Serkan; Villar Arias, Silvia; Pérez, William

    2015-02-01

    In this study, we aimed to describe the morphological characteristics of the lingual papillae in two species of Otariidae family by stereomicroscopy and scanning electron microscopy. We used tongues of two South American Otariidae species. The tongues were elongated and terminated in bifid apex and there was no median sulcus on the dorsal lingual surface. The most numerous type of lingual papilla was filiform in the South American fur seal (SASL) and entire dorsal lingual surface was covered by these filiform papillae but the dorsal surface of the tongue of the South American sea lion was covered by numerous polygonal projections, which were different in size. Fungiform papillae were detected in only SASL and they randomly distributed on the lingual apex and body, and some fungiform papillae were collected into twosome or threesome groups on the posterior part of the lingual body. Circumvallate papilla was found in the center of the lingual radix of South American sea lion. Thread-like conical papillae were common for both species and they located on the lingual radix. We determined that lingual surface morphology was completely different in each species, although they were members of the same family, Otariidae.

  5. Redescription of Antarctophthirus microchir (Anoplura: Echinophthiriidae) from the South American sea lion, Otaria flavescens, from Patagonia, Argentina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leonardi, M Soledad; Crespo, Enrique A; Raga, Juan Antonio; Fernández, Mercedes

    2009-10-01

    Antarctophthirus microchir was originally described from Phocarctos hookeri on the basis of 1 female and 1 male only. We redescribe adults and describe, for the first time, the 3 nymphal stages from specimens collected from Otaria flavescens from Patagonia, using light and scanning electron microscopy. The present material can be distinguished from other Antarctophthirus species by the presence of a fringe of setae on the back of the head, only present in Antarctophthirus trichechi and Antarctophthirus callorhini. However, A. trichechi also possess a prominent proboscis with large hooks, and A. callorhini presents less abundant and nonuniform abdominal scales in shape and size. Other differential features of A. microchir are the pattern of ovoid and uniform scales and longitudinal grooves in the surface of spines. Nymphal stage 1 differs from 2 and 3 mainly by the absence of scales and thorax without ventral spines or hairs. Nymphal stages 2 and 3 may be distinguished by the disposition of the occipital apophyses. Antarctophthirus microchir has been reported from 5 sea lion species from both hemispheres. Considering the conservative morphology, and ecological and evolutionary features of sucking lice, we raise the question of whether A. microchir from different sea lion hosts may represent a complex of cryptic species.

  6. JUVENILE SOCIAL ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHERN SEA LION, OTARIA FLAVESCENS (SHAW, 1800 IN REHABILITATION IN COAST OF LIMA, PERU

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Davis Cortegana-Arias

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Group living and social association are activities that can bring benefits and detriments depending on the species. These costs are balanced in highly social species, such as otariids, which choose to live in groups to benefit from social learning and reproductive success. Sea lion rehabilitation can provide an opportunity to watch these animals in a controlled environment and analyze what leads to this association and encourage it. Two South American sea lions [Otaria flavescens (Shaw, 1800] of one and two years of age were selected from the ORCA (Organization for Research and Conservation of Aquatic Animals rehabilitation base, and were tested to determine the conditions of the association and to eliminate human influence bias in their behavior. Twenty five behaviors were recorded through ethograms in 127 h of interaction. Also, during the human influence tests three cooperation behaviors were observed. Additionally, the interaction between individuals was agonistic, and outside of human interaction they always were at maximum distance. Finally, we note that since individuals only cooperated under influence of the human influence tests, it may be that they understand long term cooperation as in primates.

  7. COINFECTION OF CALIFORNIA SEA LION ADENOVIRUS 1 AND A NOVEL POLYOMAVIRUS IN A HAWAIIAN MONK SEAL (NEOMONACHUS SCHAUINSLANDI).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cortés-Hinojosa, Galaxia; Doescher, Bethany; Kinsel, Michael; Lednicky, John; Loeb, Julia; Waltzek, Thomas; Wellehan, James F X

    2016-06-01

    The Hawaiian monk seal (Neomonachus schauinslandi) is an endangered species. Here, we present a clinical case of a 26-yr-old male Hawaiian monk seal (HMS) kept in an aquarium with a history of intermittent anorexia and evidence of renal disease. Histologic examination revealed eosinophilic intranuclear inclusions in the liver. Conventional nested PCR protocols were used to test for viruses, and it tested positive for adenovirus and polyomavirus, and negative for herpesvirus. The adenovirus partial polymerase gene is 100% homologous to that of California sea lion adenovirus 1 (CSLAdV-1). CSLAdV-1 causes viral hepatitis in CSL, and has recently been reported in different species of otariids in an aquarium in Japan ( Otaria flavescens and Arctocephalus pusillus ) and a sequence from Spain has been submitted in NCBI as Otaria flavescens adenovirus-1. The polyomavirus in this animal is a novel virus, and is the first polyomavirus discovered in Hawaiian monk seals. This new virus is designated Hawaiian monk seal polyomavirus (HMSPyV-1), and is 83% homologous to California sea lion Polyomavirus-1 (CSLPyV-1). This is the first report of viral coinfection in a HMS and clinical significance in this case remains unclear but may be associated with advanced age.

  8. Long-lasting concentrations of cefovecin after subcutaneous and intramuscular administration to Patagonian sea lions (Otaria flavescens).

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Párraga, D; Gilabert, J A; García-Peña, F J; Álvaro, T; Ros-Rodríguez, J M; Valls, M; Encinas, T

    2016-02-01

    Cefovecin is a third-generation cephalosporin developed as an aqueous solution for use by the subcutaneous route in dogs and cats. This study evaluated the duration of cefovecin plasma concentrations after single intramuscular (IM) or subcutaneous (SC) injection at different doses in 10 Patagonian sea lions (Otaria flavescens). Blood samples were collected serially from the day of the injection up to 60-90 days post-injection. Plasma drug concentrations were determined by high performance liquid chromatography-UV detection and pharmacokinetic parameters were calculated by non-compartmental analysis. No reactions or side effects associated with the drug were observed in any of the studied animals. Both routes showed very similar pharmacokinetic behaviour. Elimination half-life (11.3-21.6 days, SC; 13.1-15.9 days, IM) and mean residence time (17.6-36.8 days SC; 16.5-25.4 days IM) were, in all cases and doses, considerably longer than those previously reported for any other species. Based on these findings, and preliminary data on specific pathogen sensitivity, cefovecin was found to be a very promising antimicrobial for Patagonian sea lions, in particular those that are difficult to access or that are under certain rehabilitation conditions.

  9. Effects of hot-iron branding on heart rate, breathing rate and behaviour of anaesthetised Steller sea lions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, K A; Mellish, J E; Weary, D M

    2011-10-01

    This study assessed the heart rate, breathing rate and behavioural responses of 12 juvenile Steller sea lions during hot-iron branding under isoflurane anaesthesia. Physiological and behavioural measures were recorded in four periods: baseline (five minutes), sham branding (one minute), branding (approximately 2.7 minutes) and postbranding (five minutes). No difference in heart rate was noted from baseline to sham branding, but heart rate increased from mean (sem) 78.3 (2.4) bpm in the baseline period to 85.6 (2.5) bpm in the branding period. Heart rate remained elevated in the postbranding period, averaging 84.7 (2.5) bpm. Breathing rate averaged 2.5 (1.0) breaths/minute in the baseline and sham branding periods increased to 8.9 (1.0) breaths/minute during branding, but returned to baseline by the postbranding period. Behaviourally, half of the sea lions exhibited trembling and head and shoulder movements during branding.

  10. Serum profiling by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry as a diagnostic tool for domoic acid toxicosis in California sea lions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Neely Benjamin A

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background There are currently no reliable markers of acute domoic acid toxicosis (DAT for California sea lions. We investigated whether patterns of serum peptides could diagnose acute DAT. Serum peptides were analyzed by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry from 107 sea lions (acute DAT n = 34; non-DAT n = 73. Artificial neural networks (ANN were trained using MALDI-TOF data. Individual peaks and neural networks were qualified using an independent test set (n = 20. Results No single peak was a good classifier of acute DAT, and ANN models were the best predictors of acute DAT. Performance measures for a single median ANN were: sensitivity, 100%; specificity, 60%; positive predictive value, 71%; negative predictive value, 100%. When 101 ANNs were combined and allowed to vote for the outcome, the performance measures were: sensitivity, 30%; specificity, 100%; positive predictive value, 100%; negative predictive value, 59%. Conclusions These results suggest that MALDI-TOF peptide profiling and neural networks can perform either as a highly sensitive (100% negative predictive value or a highly specific (100% positive predictive value diagnostic tool for acute DAT. This also suggests that machine learning directed by populations of predictive models offer the ability to modulate the predictive effort into a specific type of error.

  11. Septicaemia and meningitis caused by infection of New Zealand sea lion pups with a hypermucoviscous strain of Klebsiella pneumoniae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roe, W D; Rogers, L; Pinpimai, K; Dittmer, K; Marshall, J; Chilvers, B L

    2015-04-17

    This study describes a syndrome of neonatal septicemia and meningitis in New Zealand sea lions, caused by a strain of Klebsiella pneumoniae that is phenotypically similar to strains causing environmentally-acquired septicemia and neuro-invasive disease in humans. Between late 2006 and early 2010, 123 pups from the Enderby Island breeding colony died of K. pneumoniae infection, with lesions including fibrinous to fibrinosuppurative meningitis, subdural hemorrhage, septic arthritis, herniation and hemorrhage of the cerebellar vermis, lymphadenitis and cellulitis. This infection was responsible for 58% of observed pup mortality over this time period, with most deaths occurring in the latter part of the breeding season (mid February onwards). The results of this study suggest that the pattern of this disease has changed since it was first described in 2002, when most deaths occurred early in the season (early to mid-January), and that it is an important and consistent cause of pup mortality in this population. In addition, a similar disease syndrome and bacterial strain was diagnosed in a single pup in a fragile recolonizing New Zealand sea lion population on mainland New Zealand, and the potential effect on this population is unknown but could have a negative impact on recolonisation at this site.

  12. Wave Height Incidence on Mediterranean Short Sea Shipping Routes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. X. Martínez de Osés

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available According to the recent mid term review of the EU white paper on transport, Short Sea Shipping in EU waters is expected to grow from 2000 to 2020 at a rate of 59% in volume (metric tonnes. If we consider that the overall expected growth in freight exchanges is of 50% (also in volume, sea transport is one of the most feasible ways to reduce traffic congestion on European roads. High speed vessels are a possible way to compete with road transport in certain traffics; however these ships are highly affected by heavy weather. This paper is going to analyse the weather influence on several short sea shipping Mediterranean routes to be served by fast ships.

  13. Neutrino Telescopy in the Mediterranean Sea

    CERN Document Server

    Katz, U F

    2005-01-01

    The observation of high-energy extraterrestrial neutrinos is one of the most promising future options to increase our knowledge on non-thermal processes in the universe. Neutrinos are e.g. unavoidably produced in environments where high-energy hadrons collide; in particular this almost certainly must be true in the astrophysical accelerators of cosmic rays, which thus could be identified unambiguously by sky observations in "neutrino light". On the one hand, neutrinos are ideal messengers for astrophysical observations since they are not deflected by electromagnetic fields and interact so weakly that they are able to escape even from very dense production regions and traverse large distances in the universe without attenuation. On the other hand, their weak interaction poses a significant problem for detecting neutrinos. Huge target masses up to gigatons must be employed, requiring to instrument natural abundances of media such as sea water or antarctic ice. The first generation of such neutrino telescopes is...

  14. Floating plastic debris in the Central and Western Mediterranean Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz-Orejón, Luis F; Sardá, Rafael; Ramis-Pujol, Juan

    2016-09-01

    In two sea voyages throughout the Mediterranean (2011 and 2013) that repeated the historical travels of Archduke Ludwig Salvator of Austria (1847-1915), 71 samples of floating plastic debris were obtained with a Manta trawl. Floating plastic was observed in all the sampled sites, with an average weight concentration of 579.3 g dw km(-2) (maximum value of 9298.2 g dw km(-2)) and an average particle concentration of 147,500 items km(-2) (the maximum concentration was 1,164,403 items km(-2)). The plastic size distribution showed microplastics (<5 mm) in all the samples. The most abundant particles had a surface area of approximately 1 mm(2) (the mesh size was 333 μm). The general estimate obtained was a total value of 1455 tons dw of floating plastic in the entire Mediterranean region, with various potential spatial accumulation areas.

  15. Foraging strategies of Southern sea lion females in the La Plata River Estuary (Argentina-Uruguay)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez, Diego H.; Dassis, Mariela; Ponce de León, Alberto; Barreiro, César; Farenga, Marcelo; Bastida, Ricardo O.; Davis, Randall W.

    2013-04-01

    The stocks of Southern sea lions (Otaria flavescens, SSL) and South American fur seals (SAFS) that breed on coastal islands of Uruguay constitute the most important focal concentration of pinnipeds in South America, with a significant increase in SAFS and a steady decrease of SSL over the past decades. Because females are a key element of population dynamics and no information exists on the post-breeding pup rearing period, we studied the foraging patterns of SSL females in the La Plata River Estuary (LPRE) during mid and late lactation (late austral autumn and winter), analyzing the foraging performance, geographic coverage and ontogenetic differences in foraging strategies for a period of 1-5 months. At-sea movements of 22 SSL females (6 subadults and 16 adults) from Isla de Lobos (IL, 35°01'28"S-54°52'59"W, Uruguay) were monitored using satellite transmitters (SPOT4, SPOT5 and STDR-S16, Wildlife Computers) in 2007 and 2010. An algorithm [McConnell, B.J., Chambers, C., Fedak, M.A., 1992. Foraging ecology of southern elephant seals in relation to the bathymetry and productivity of the Southern Ocean. Antarct. Sci. 4, 393-398.] with a maximum transit speed of 3 m s-1 was applied to the Argos information, resulting in a total of 2522 filtered locations. A daily mean of 3.5±1.74 filtered locations per animal was received. One hundred and eighty three foraging trips (FT) were recorded with no significant differences (p<0.05) between subadults and adults in the duration of FT (6.1±3.15 day), distance traveled per FT (237.2±105.25 km), mean distance from IL (57.2±25.90 km), maximum straight line (Spider) distance (100.2±41.40 km) and transit speed (1.1±1.04 m s-1). SSL showed directional fidelity to foraging sites, indicated by high mean vector (r) values (0.74±0.14) calculated from FT mean bearings. Kernel ranges for 50% and 95% of all FT locations were 5420 km2 and 36,222 km2, respectively, and the extension of the foraging areas appeared to be influenced by

  16. Deep silicon maxima in the stratified oligotrophic Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Y. Crombet

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available The silicon biogeochemical cycle has been studied in the Mediterranean Sea during late summer/early autumn 1999 and summer 2008. The distribution of nutrients, particulate carbon and silicon, fucoxanthin (Fuco, and total chlorophyll-a (TChl-a were investigated along an eastward gradient of oligotrophy during two cruises (PROSOPE and BOUM encompassing the entire Mediterranean Sea during the stratified period. At both seasons, surface waters were depleted in nutrients and the nutriclines gradually deepened towards the East, the phosphacline being the deepest in the easternmost Levantine basin. Following the nutriclines, parallel deep maxima of biogenic silica (DSM, fucoxanthin (DFM and TChl-a (DCM were evidenced during both seasons with maximal concentrations of 0.45 μmol L−1 for BSi, 0.26 μg L−1 for Fuco, and 1.70 μg L−1 for TChl-a, all measured during summer. Contrary to the DCM which was a persistent feature in the Mediterranean Sea, the DSM and DFMs were observed in discrete areas of the Alboran Sea, the Algero-Provencal basin, the Ionian sea and the Levantine basin, indicating that diatoms were able to grow at depth and dominate the DCM under specific conditions. Diatom assemblages were dominated by Chaetoceros spp., Leptocylindrus spp., Pseudonitzschia spp. and the association between large centric diatoms (Hemiaulus hauckii and Rhizosolenia styliformis and the cyanobacterium Richelia intracellularis was observed at nearly all sites. The diatom's ability to grow at depth is commonly observed in other oligotrophic regions and could play a major role in ecosystem productivity and carbon export to depth. Contrary to the common view that Si and siliceous phytoplankton are not major components of the Mediterranean biogeochemistry, we suggest here that diatoms, by persisting at depth during the stratified period, could contribute to a

  17. Excess of (236)U in the northwest Mediterranean Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chamizo, E; López-Lora, M; Bressac, M; Levy, I; Pham, M K

    2016-09-15

    In this work, we present first (236)U results in the northwestern Mediterranean. (236)U is studied in a seawater column sampled at DYFAMED (Dynamics of Atmospheric Fluxes in the Mediterranean Sea) station (Ligurian Sea, 43°25'N, 07°52'E). The obtained (236)U/(238)U atom ratios in the dissolved phase, ranging from about 2×10(-9) at 100m depth to about 1.5×10(-9) at 2350m depth, indicate that anthropogenic (236)U dominates the whole seawater column. The corresponding deep-water column inventory (12.6ng/m(2) or 32.1×10(12) atoms/m(2)) exceeds by a factor of 2.5 the expected one for global fallout at similar latitudes (5ng/m(2) or 13×10(12) atoms/m(2)), evidencing the influence of local or regional (236)U sources in the western Mediterranean basin. On the other hand, the input of (236)U associated to Saharan dust outbreaks is evaluated. An additional (236)U annual deposition of about 0.2pg/m(2) based on the study of atmospheric particles collected in Monaco during different Saharan dust intrusions is estimated. The obtained results in the corresponding suspended solids collected at DYFAMED station indicate that about 64% of that (236)U stays in solution in seawater. Overall, this source accounts for about 0.1% of the (236)U inventory excess observed at DYFAMED station. The influence of the so-called Chernobyl fallout and the radioactive effluents produced by the different nuclear installations allocated to the Mediterranean basin, might explain the inventory gap, however, further studies are necessary to come to a conclusion about its origin.

  18. Molecular Markers, MAT and Modeling: New Evidence for Leptospirosis Being Endemic in California Sea Lions, with Periodic Epizootics that Defy the Host-adapted Strain Paradigm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leptospirosis is a zoonotic disease infecting a broad range of mammalian hosts, and is re-emerging globally in humans and domestic dogs. Disease outbreaks have occurred periodically in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) off the central and northern coasts of California, with hundreds of a...

  19. An evaluation of surface micro- and mesoplastic pollution in pelagic ecosystems of the Western Mediterranean Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faure, Florian; Saini, Camille; Potter, Gaël; Galgani, François; de Alencastro, Luiz Felippe; Hagmann, Pascal

    2015-08-01

    This study examines the distribution, abundance and characteristics of surface micro- and mesoplastic debris in the Western Mediterranean Sea. 41 samples were collected in 2011 (summer) and 2012 (summer). Results, firstly, revealed that micro- (Sea.

  20. Metabarcoding analysis of European hake diet in the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giulia Riccioni

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available European hake (EH, Merluccius merluccius, is a demersal fish distributed from the North Sea and Atlantic to the Levantine Sea in the Mediterranean. EH is an important predator of deep Mediterranean upper shelf slope communities and it is currently characterised by growth overexploitation. EH adults feed mainly on fish and squids whereas the young (<16 cm feed on crustaceans. All current EH diet studies relied on the morphological identification of prey remains in stomach content, however this method is labour intensive and it precludes the identification of strongly digested food. The development of High-Throughput Sequencing (HTS approaches provide more accurate methods for dietary studies revealing many consumed species simultaneously (DNA metabarcoding. The aim of this study is to use a HTS approach based on COI amplification, contextually to classic microscopic morphological identification, to analyse EH stomach content and to evaluate the efficiency of the molecular method. HTS sequencing has been carried out on the amplicons obtained by PCR amplification (Leray et al. 2013 of stomach remains and all the Miseq Illumina paired-end reads have been analysed by using bioinformatic tools (Boyer et al. 2015 for taxonomic assignment. The selected sequences clustered in OCTUs (Operational Clustered Taxonomic Units and taxonomically assigned, will be used in diversity analyses to compute distance matrices among samples, to compare taxa summaries from different samples, to create networks and perform PCA and PcoA analysis. Classic microscopic morphological analyses on stomach content remains have been carried out contextually to compare the results of the two methods. The molecular approach has proven a promising method to study marine fish dietary habits. All the data will be summarized to reconstruct EH trophic dynamics in the Mediterranean Sea.

  1. Fine-resolution simulation of surface current and sea ice in the Arctic Mediterranean Seas

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LIU Xiying; ZHANG Xuehong; YU Rucong; LIU Hailong; LI Wei

    2007-01-01

    A fine-resolution model is developed for ocean circulation simulation in the National Key Laboratory of Numerical Modeling for Atmospheric Sciences and Geophysical Fluid Dynamics (LASG),Chinese Academy of Sciences, and is applied to simulate surface current and sea ice variations in the Arctic Mediterranean Seas. A dynamic sea ice model in elastic-viscous-plastic rheology and a thermodynamic sea ice model are employed. A 200-year simulation is performed and a dimatological average of a 10-year period (141 st-150 th) is presented with focus on sea ice concentration and surface current variations in the Arctic Mediterranean Seas. The model is able to simulate well the East Greenland Current, Beaufort Gyre and the Transpolar Drift, but the simulated West Spitsbergen Current is small and weak. In the March climatology, the sea ice coverage can be simulated well except for a bit more ice in east of Spitsbergen Island. The result is also good for the September scenario except for less ice concentration east of Greenland and greater ice concentration near the ice margin. The extra ice east of Spitsbergen Island is caused by sea ice current convergence forced by atmospheric wind stress.

  2. Deep-sea biodiversity in the Mediterranean Sea: the known, the unknown, and the unknowable.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberto Danovaro

    Full Text Available Deep-sea ecosystems represent the largest biome of the global biosphere, but knowledge of their biodiversity is still scant. The Mediterranean basin has been proposed as a hot spot of terrestrial and coastal marine biodiversity but has been supposed to be impoverished of deep-sea species richness. We summarized all available information on benthic biodiversity (Prokaryotes, Foraminifera, Meiofauna, Macrofauna, and Megafauna in different deep-sea ecosystems of the Mediterranean Sea (200 to more than 4,000 m depth, including open slopes, deep basins, canyons, cold seeps, seamounts, deep-water corals and deep-hypersaline anoxic basins and analyzed overall longitudinal and bathymetric patterns. We show that in contrast to what was expected from the sharp decrease in organic carbon fluxes and reduced faunal abundance, the deep-sea biodiversity of both the eastern and the western basins of the Mediterranean Sea is similarly high. All of the biodiversity components, except Bacteria and Archaea, displayed a decreasing pattern with increasing water depth, but to a different extent for each component. Unlike patterns observed for faunal abundance, highest negative values of the slopes of the biodiversity patterns were observed for Meiofauna, followed by Macrofauna and Megafauna. Comparison of the biodiversity associated with open slopes, deep basins, canyons, and deep-water corals showed that the deep basins were the least diverse. Rarefaction curves allowed us to estimate the expected number of species for each benthic component in different bathymetric ranges. A large fraction of exclusive species was associated with each specific habitat or ecosystem. Thus, each deep-sea ecosystem contributes significantly to overall biodiversity. From theoretical extrapolations we estimate that the overall deep-sea Mediterranean biodiversity (excluding prokaryotes reaches approximately 2805 species of which about 66% is still undiscovered. Among the biotic components

  3. Deep-Sea Biodiversity in the Mediterranean Sea: The Known, the Unknown, and the Unknowable

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danovaro, Roberto; Company, Joan Batista; Corinaldesi, Cinzia; D'Onghia, Gianfranco; Galil, Bella; Gambi, Cristina; Gooday, Andrew J.; Lampadariou, Nikolaos; Luna, Gian Marco; Morigi, Caterina; Olu, Karine; Polymenakou, Paraskevi; Ramirez-Llodra, Eva; Sabbatini, Anna; Sardà, Francesc; Sibuet, Myriam; Tselepides, Anastasios

    2010-01-01

    Deep-sea ecosystems represent the largest biome of the global biosphere, but knowledge of their biodiversity is still scant. The Mediterranean basin has been proposed as a hot spot of terrestrial and coastal marine biodiversity but has been supposed to be impoverished of deep-sea species richness. We summarized all available information on benthic biodiversity (Prokaryotes, Foraminifera, Meiofauna, Macrofauna, and Megafauna) in different deep-sea ecosystems of the Mediterranean Sea (200 to more than 4,000 m depth), including open slopes, deep basins, canyons, cold seeps, seamounts, deep-water corals and deep-hypersaline anoxic basins and analyzed overall longitudinal and bathymetric patterns. We show that in contrast to what was expected from the sharp decrease in organic carbon fluxes and reduced faunal abundance, the deep-sea biodiversity of both the eastern and the western basins of the Mediterranean Sea is similarly high. All of the biodiversity components, except Bacteria and Archaea, displayed a decreasing pattern with increasing water depth, but to a different extent for each component. Unlike patterns observed for faunal abundance, highest negative values of the slopes of the biodiversity patterns were observed for Meiofauna, followed by Macrofauna and Megafauna. Comparison of the biodiversity associated with open slopes, deep basins, canyons, and deep-water corals showed that the deep basins were the least diverse. Rarefaction curves allowed us to estimate the expected number of species for each benthic component in different bathymetric ranges. A large fraction of exclusive species was associated with each specific habitat or ecosystem. Thus, each deep-sea ecosystem contributes significantly to overall biodiversity. From theoretical extrapolations we estimate that the overall deep-sea Mediterranean biodiversity (excluding prokaryotes) reaches approximately 2805 species of which about 66% is still undiscovered. Among the biotic components investigated

  4. Proteomic Analysis of Plasma from California Sea Lions (Zalophus californianus Reveals Apolipoprotein E as a Candidate Biomarker of Chronic Domoic Acid Toxicosis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin A Neely

    Full Text Available Domoic acid toxicosis (DAT in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus is caused by exposure to the marine biotoxin domoic acid and has been linked to massive stranding events and mortality. Diagnosis is based on clinical signs in addition to the presence of domoic acid in body fluids. Chronic DAT further is characterized by reoccurring seizures progressing to status epilepticus. Diagnosis of chronic DAT is often slow and problematic, and minimally invasive tests for DAT have been the focus of numerous recent biomarker studies. The goal of this study was to retrospectively profile plasma proteins in a population of sea lions with chronic DAT and those without DAT using two dimensional gel electrophoresis to discover whether individual, multiple, or combinations of protein and clinical data could be utilized to identify sea lions with DAT. Using a training set of 32 sea lion sera, 20 proteins and their isoforms were identified that were significantly different between the two groups (p<0.05. Interestingly, 11 apolipoprotein E (ApoE charge forms were decreased in DAT samples, indicating that ApoE charge form distributions may be important in the progression of DAT. In order to develop a classifier of chronic DAT, an independent blinded test set of 20 sea lions, seven with chronic DAT, was used to validate models utilizing ApoE charge forms and eosinophil counts. The resulting support vector machine had high sensitivity (85.7% with 92.3% negative predictive value and high specificity (92.3% with 85.7% positive predictive value. These results suggest that ApoE and eosinophil counts along with machine learning can perform as a robust and accurate tool to diagnose chronic DAT. Although this analysis is specifically focused on blood biomarkers and routine clinical data, the results demonstrate promise for future studies combining additional variables in multidimensional space to create robust classifiers.

  5. A multi-model ensemble view of winter heat flux dynamics and the dipole mode in the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liguori, Giovanni; Di Lorenzo, Emanuele; Cabos, William

    2017-02-01

    Changes in surface heat fluxes affect several climate processes controlling the Mediterranean climate. These include the winter formation of deep waters, which is the primary driver of the Mediterranean Sea overturning circulation. Previous studies that characterize the spatial and temporal variability of surface heat flux anomalies over the basin reveal the existence of two statistically dominant patterns of variability: a monopole of uniform sign and an east-west dipole of opposite signs. In this work, we use the 12 regional climate model ensemble from the EU-FP6 ENSEMBLES project to diagnose the large-scale atmospheric processes that control the variability of heat fluxes over the Mediterranean Sea from interannual to decadal timescales (here defined as timescales > 6 year). Our findings suggest that while the monopole structure captures variability in the winter-to-winter domain-average net heat flux, the dipole pattern tracks changes in the Mediterranean climate that are connected to the East Atlantic/Western Russia (EA/WR) atmospheric teleconnection pattern. Furthermore, while the monopole exhibits significant differences in the spatial structure across the multi-model ensemble, the dipole pattern is very robust and more clearly identifiable in the anomaly maps of individual years. A heat budget analysis of the dipole pattern reveals that changes in winds associated with the EA/WR pattern exert dominant control through both a direct effect on the latent heat flux (i.e., wind speed) and an indirect effect through specific humidity (e.g., wind advection). A simple reconstruction of the heat flux variability over the deep-water formation regions of the Gulf of Lion and the Aegean Sea reveals that the combination of the monopole and dipole time series explains over 90 % of the heat flux variance in these regions. Given the important role that surface heat flux anomalies play in deep-water formation and the regional climate, improving our knowledge on the dynamics

  6. Dense shelf water cascading in the northwestern Mediterranean during the cold winter 2005: Quantification of the export through the Gulf of Lion and the Catalan margin

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ulses, C.; Estournel, C.; Puig, P.; Durrieu de Madron, X.; Marsaleix, P.

    2008-01-01

    Dense shelf water cascading in the northwestern Mediterranean Sea during winter 2005, which was shown to cause large erosion in the canyons and to influence deep benthic ecosystem, was investigated using numerical modeling validated with temperature and current observations. Intense dense water

  7. Recent sea surface temperature trends and future scenarios for the Mediterranean Sea:

    OpenAIRE

    2014-01-01

    We analyse recent Mediterranean Sea surface temperatures (SSTs) and their response to global change using 1/4-degree gridded advanced very-high-resolution radiometer (AVHRR) daily SST data, 1982-2012. These data indicate significant annual warming (from 0.24°C decade-1 west of the Strait of Gibraltar to 0.51°C decade-1 over the Black Sea) and significant spatial variation in annual average SST (from 15ºC over the Black Sea to 21°C over the Levantine sub-basin). Ensemble mean scenarios indicat...

  8. Bryozoan diversity in the Mediterranean Sea: an update

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. ROSSO

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available This paper provides a current view of the bryozoan biodiversity of the Mediterranean Sea updating the checklist by Rosso (2003. Bryozoans presently living in the Mediterranean increase to 556 species, 212 genera and 93 families. Cheilostomes largely prevail (424 species, 159 genera and 64 families followed by cyclostomes (75 species, 26 genera and 11 families and ctenostomes (57 species, 27 genera and 18 families. Few families and genera make the bulk of this biodiversity whereas one third of families are monospecific. The number of species-rank taxa has increased by 81 in the last dozen years but most of these additions relate to the revision of material from old collections and to the introduction of non-indigenous species. Most of the bryozoan diversity is distributed in the coralligenous and dark and semi-dark cave biocoenoses followed by detritic bottoms. Diversity lowers in shallow-water vegetated bottoms and in bathyal habitats. Further increase in diversity is expected from investigation of still poorly known areas and habitats and the need for rapid assessment is remarked on in view of the management of Mediterranean habitats through the EU Marine Strategy Directive.

  9. Food web structure and vulnerability of a deep-sea ecosystem in the NW Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tecchio, Samuele; Coll, Marta; Christensen, Villy; Company, Joan B.; Ramírez-Llodra, Eva; Sardà, Francisco

    2013-05-01

    There is increasing fishing pressure on the continental margins of the oceans, and this raises concerns about the vulnerability of the ecosystems thriving there. The current knowledge of the biology of deep-water fish species identifies potential reduced resilience to anthropogenic disturbance. However, there are extreme difficulties in sampling the deep sea, resulting in poorly resolved and indirectly obtained food-web relationships. Here, we modelled the flows and biomasses of a Mediterranean deep-sea ecosystem, the Catalan Sea continental slope at depths of 1000-1400 m. This is the first model of a deep-water ecosystem in the Mediterranean Sea. The objectives were to (a) quantitatively describe the food web structure of the ecosystem, (b) examine the role of key species in the ecosystem, and (c) explore the vulnerability of this deep-sea ecosystem to potential future fishing exploitation. We used the Ecopath with Ecosim (EwE) modelling approach and software to model the ecosystem. The trophic model included 18 consumers, a marine snow group, and a sediment detritus group. Trophic network analysis identified low levels of consumer biomass cycling and low system omnivory index when compared with expected values of marine ecosystems, and higher cycling and omnivory when compared with available EwE models of shallower areas of the Mediterranean Sea. The majority of flows in the ecosystem were concentrated at the trophic level of first-order consumers (TL 2). Benthic invertebrates and demersal sharks were identified to have key ecological roles in the ecosystem. We used the dynamic temporal model Ecosim to simulate expansion of the red-shrimp benthic trawl fishery that currently operates at shallower depths, down to 800 m depth. The simulations showed reductions in fish biomass and that the state of the deep continental slope ecosystem in the western Mediterranean seems to be the result of a long-term succession process, which has reached ecological stability, and is

  10. Acidification of the Mediterranean Sea during the 21st century

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Vu, Briac; Palmieri, Julien; Orr, James C.; Dutay, Jean Claude; Sevault, Florence

    2014-05-01

    We modeled the carbon cycle in the Mediterranean Sea to study how its changes due to climate change and rising levels of atmospheric CO2 may differ from those typical of the global ocean. More specifically, we coupled offline an ocean biogeochemical model (PISCES) to a regional eddy-permitting model of the Mediterranean Sea (NEMO-MED8, 1/8° nominal horizonal resolution) using forcing from coupled regional climate model simulations of which the ocean circulation component was identical. Here we describe the simulated changes in pH and the associated carbonate system during the 21st century. Separate simulations were made with climate forcing for a hindcast (1965-2008) and for the future (2000-2100). For the former, climate and CO2 forcings were based on observations; for the latter, both climate and CO2 were driven by the IPCC SRES-A2 scenario. Our hindcast simulation over the period 1965-2008 allowed us to evaluate the model and assess recent variability of the carbonate system. In our future simulation, we used separate tracers to distinguish (1) the change due to climate change and the increase in atmospheric CO2 (from 370 to 800 ppm) and (2) the change due only to climate change (holding atmospheric CO2 to the year-2000 level of 370 ppm). By difference, we isolated the geochemical effect (anthropogenic CO2 perturbation). The hindcast simulation demonstrates that the model captures the amplitude and phase of the annual cycle of temperature, pCO2 and pH, in agreement with data from the DYFAMED station. That seasonal variability of surface pCO2 is everywhere driven by variations in temperature. These results lends support that the model is able to quantify the acidification of the Mediterranean Sea during the industrial period and for the future. However, they do not constrain the model's simulated effects of future climate change on ocean circulation and ocean biology, both of which in turn influence the carbon cycle. Similar to estimates for the global ocean

  11. Temperature, salinity, and nutrients data collected from North Atlantic Ocean, White Sea, Mediterranean Sea, Black Sea, and Sea of Azov from 1924-03-19 to 1989-11-19 by multiple Soviet Union institutes (NODC Accession 0077413)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Temperature, salinity, and nutrients data collected from North Atlantic Ocean, White Sea, Mediterranean Sea, Black Sea, and Sea of Azov from 1924-03-19 to 1989-11-19...

  12. Stable carbon isotope gradients in benthic foraminifera as proxy for organic carbon fluxes in the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theodor, Marc; Schmiedl, Gerhard; Jorissen, Frans; Mackensen, Andreas

    2016-11-01

    We have determined stable carbon isotope ratios of epifaunal and shallow infaunal benthic foraminifera in the Mediterranean Sea to relate the inferred gradient of pore water δ13CDIC to varying trophic conditions. This is a prerequisite for developing this difference into a potential transfer function for organic matter flux rates. The data set is based on samples retrieved from a well-defined bathymetric range (400-1500 m water depth) of sub-basins in the western, central, and eastern Mediterranean Sea. Regional contrasts in organic matter fluxes and associated δ13CDIC of pore water are recorded by the δ13C difference (Δδ13CUmed-Epi) between the shallow infaunal Uvigerina mediterranea and epifaunal species (Planulina ariminensis, Cibicidoides pachydermus, Cibicides lobatulus). Within epifaunal taxa, the highest δ13C values are recorded for P. ariminensis, providing the best indicator for bottom water δ13CDIC. In contrast, C. pachydermus reveals minor pore water effects at the more eutrophic sites. Because of ontogenetic trends in the δ13C signal of U. mediterranea of up to 1.04 ‰, only tests larger than 600 µm were used for the development of the transfer function. The recorded differences in the δ13C values of U. mediterranea and epifaunal taxa (Δδ13CUmed-Epi) range from -0.46 to -2.13 ‰, with generally higher offsets at more eutrophic sites. The measured δ13C differences are related to site-specific differences in microhabitat, depth of the principal sedimentary redox boundary, and TOC content of the ambient sediment. The Δδ13CUmed-Epi values reveal a consistent relation to Corg fluxes estimated from satellite-derived surface water primary production in open-marine settings of the Alboran Sea, Mallorca Channel, Strait of Sicily, and southern Aegean Sea. In contrast, Δδ13CUmed-Epi values in areas affected by intense resuspension and riverine organic matter sources of the northern to central Aegean Sea and the canyon systems of the Gulf of Lion

  13. Trophic structure of pelagic species in the northwestern Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albo-Puigserver, Marta; Navarro, Joan; Coll, Marta; Layman, Craig A.; Palomera, Isabel

    2016-11-01

    Ecological knowledge of food web interactions within pelagic marine communities is often limited, impairing our capabilities to manage these ecologically and economically important marine fish species. Here we used stable isotope analyses to investigate trophic interactions in the pelagic ecosystem of the northwestern Mediterranean Sea during 2012 and 2013. Our results suggest that European sardine, Sardina pilchardus, and anchovy, Engraulis encrasicolus, are consumers located at relatively low levels of the pelagic food web. Unexpectedly, the round sardinella, Sardinella aurita, appeared to be located at a higher trophic level than the other small pelagic fish species, although previous studies found similarity in their diets. Isotope data suggested that trophic niches of species within the genera Trachurus spp. and Scomber spp., were distinct. Atlantic bonito Sarda sarda, European hake Merluccius merluccius and European squid Loligo vulgaris, appeared to feed at higher trophic levels than other species. Despite some intraspecific seasonal variability for some species, community trophic structure appeared relatively stable through the year. These data provide an important step for developing models of food web dynamics in the northwestern Mediterranean Sea.

  14. Seasonal variability in the Central Mediterranean Sea circulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Sorgente

    Full Text Available A high resolution eddy-resolving primitive equation numerical model, based on the Princeton Ocean Model (POM, is used to study the seasonal variability of the general circulation in the Central Mediterranean Sea. The model is run on a seasonal cycle, perpetual year simulation for five years, with nesting to the coarser resolution Ocean General Circulation Model (OGCM, covering the whole Mediterranean Sea. The model results are compared to the current knowledge on the hydrography and dynamics of the area, with a special focus on the annual cycle of the Modified Atlantic Water (MAW, on the circulation in the Sardinia Channel, the water exchange across the Strait of Sicily, and on the transition and fate of the Levantine Intermediate Water (LIW. The results show that the adopted coupling techniques between the two models give a proficient downscaling of the large-scale OGCM flow field into the regional scale model. The numerical solution is also used to highlight the seasonal characteristics of important dynamical features in the area, as well as to shed light on the scarcely known circulation regimes along the north African shelf and slope.

    Key words. Oceanography: general (numerical modelling; Oceanography: physical (currents; general circulation

  15. A new species of Ascocotyle (Trematoda: Heterophyidae) from the South American sea lion, Otaria flavescens, off Patagonia, Argentina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández-Orts, Jesús Servando; Montero, Francisco Esteban; Crespo, Enrique Alberto; García, Néstor Aníbal; Raga, Juan Antonio; Aznar, Francisco Javier

    2012-08-01

    We describe a new heterophyid species, Ascocotyle (Ascocotyle) patagoniensis n. sp., based on specimens collected from the intestines of the South American sea lion Otaria flavescens from Patagonia (Argentina). Ascocotyle (A.) patagoniensis n. sp. is distinguished from the other species of the subgenus by the number of circumoral spines, which are arranged in 2 rows of 18 to 23. The new species also differs from the other species in having a gonotyl without papillae. The specimens exhibited the widest seminal receptacle described for a species of this subgenus. Species of the subgenus Ascocotyle usually infect fish-eating birds or mammals in freshwater or brackish habitats. Ascocotyle (A.) patagoniensis n. sp. is the first species of the subgenus described from a marine mammal. However, no metacercariae of Ascocotyle spp. were found in 542 marine teleosts from 20 species collected in the same locality. The life cycle of the marine species from the Ascocotyle -complex infecting pinnipeds remains elusive.

  16. Invasion pathway of the Ctenophore Mnemiopsis leidyi in the Mediterranean Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghabooli, Sara; Shiganova, Tamara A; Briski, Elizabeta; Piraino, Stefano; Fuentes, Veronica; Thibault-Botha, Delphine; Angel, Dror L; Cristescu, Melania E; Macisaac, Hugh J

    2013-01-01

    Gelatinous zooplankton outbreaks have increased globally owing to a number of human-mediated factors, including food web alterations and species introductions. The invasive ctenophore Mnemiopsis leidyi entered the Black Sea in the early 1980s. The invasion was followed by the Azov, Caspian, Baltic and North Seas, and, most recently, the Mediterranean Sea. Previous studies identified two distinct invasion pathways of M. leidyi from its native range in the western Atlantic Ocean to Eurasia. However, the source of newly established populations in the Mediterranean Sea remains unclear. Here we build upon our previous study and investigate sequence variation in both mitochondrial (Cytochrome c Oxidase subunit I) and nuclear (Internal Transcribed Spacer) markers in M. leidyi, encompassing five native and 11 introduced populations, including four from the Mediterranean Sea. Extant genetic diversity in Mediterranean populations (n = 8, N a = 10) preclude the occurrence of a severe genetic bottleneck or founder effects in the initial colonizing population. Our mitochondrial and nuclear marker surveys revealed two possible pathways of introduction into Mediterranean Sea. In total, 17 haplotypes and 18 alleles were recovered from all surveyed populations. Haplotype and allelic diversity of Mediterranean populations were comparable to populations from which they were likely drawn. The distribution of genetic diversity and pattern of genetic differentiation suggest initial colonization of the Mediterranean from the Black-Azov Seas (pairwise F ST = 0.001-0.028). However, some haplotypes and alleles from the Mediterranean Sea were not detected from the well-sampled Black Sea, although they were found in Gulf of Mexico populations that were also genetically similar to those in the Mediterranean Sea (pairwise F ST = 0.010-0.032), raising the possibility of multiple invasion sources. Multiple introductions from a combination of Black Sea and native region sources

  17. Invasion pathway of the Ctenophore Mnemiopsis leidyi in the Mediterranean Sea.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara Ghabooli

    Full Text Available Gelatinous zooplankton outbreaks have increased globally owing to a number of human-mediated factors, including food web alterations and species introductions. The invasive ctenophore Mnemiopsis leidyi entered the Black Sea in the early 1980s. The invasion was followed by the Azov, Caspian, Baltic and North Seas, and, most recently, the Mediterranean Sea. Previous studies identified two distinct invasion pathways of M. leidyi from its native range in the western Atlantic Ocean to Eurasia. However, the source of newly established populations in the Mediterranean Sea remains unclear. Here we build upon our previous study and investigate sequence variation in both mitochondrial (Cytochrome c Oxidase subunit I and nuclear (Internal Transcribed Spacer markers in M. leidyi, encompassing five native and 11 introduced populations, including four from the Mediterranean Sea. Extant genetic diversity in Mediterranean populations (n = 8, N a = 10 preclude the occurrence of a severe genetic bottleneck or founder effects in the initial colonizing population. Our mitochondrial and nuclear marker surveys revealed two possible pathways of introduction into Mediterranean Sea. In total, 17 haplotypes and 18 alleles were recovered from all surveyed populations. Haplotype and allelic diversity of Mediterranean populations were comparable to populations from which they were likely drawn. The distribution of genetic diversity and pattern of genetic differentiation suggest initial colonization of the Mediterranean from the Black-Azov Seas (pairwise F ST = 0.001-0.028. However, some haplotypes and alleles from the Mediterranean Sea were not detected from the well-sampled Black Sea, although they were found in Gulf of Mexico populations that were also genetically similar to those in the Mediterranean Sea (pairwise F ST = 0.010-0.032, raising the possibility of multiple invasion sources. Multiple introductions from a combination of Black Sea and native

  18. Invasion Pathway of the Ctenophore Mnemiopsis leidyi in the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghabooli, Sara; Shiganova, Tamara A.; Briski, Elizabeta; Piraino, Stefano; Fuentes, Veronica; Thibault-Botha, Delphine; Angel, Dror L.; Cristescu, Melania E.; MacIsaac, Hugh J.

    2013-01-01

    Gelatinous zooplankton outbreaks have increased globally owing to a number of human-mediated factors, including food web alterations and species introductions. The invasive ctenophore Mnemiopsis leidyi entered the Black Sea in the early 1980s. The invasion was followed by the Azov, Caspian, Baltic and North Seas, and, most recently, the Mediterranean Sea. Previous studies identified two distinct invasion pathways of M. leidyi from its native range in the western Atlantic Ocean to Eurasia. However, the source of newly established populations in the Mediterranean Sea remains unclear. Here we build upon our previous study and investigate sequence variation in both mitochondrial (Cytochrome c Oxidase subunit I) and nuclear (Internal Transcribed Spacer) markers in M. leidyi, encompassing five native and 11 introduced populations, including four from the Mediterranean Sea. Extant genetic diversity in Mediterranean populations (n = 8, Na = 10) preclude the occurrence of a severe genetic bottleneck or founder effects in the initial colonizing population. Our mitochondrial and nuclear marker surveys revealed two possible pathways of introduction into Mediterranean Sea. In total, 17 haplotypes and 18 alleles were recovered from all surveyed populations. Haplotype and allelic diversity of Mediterranean populations were comparable to populations from which they were likely drawn. The distribution of genetic diversity and pattern of genetic differentiation suggest initial colonization of the Mediterranean from the Black-Azov Seas (pairwise FST = 0.001–0.028). However, some haplotypes and alleles from the Mediterranean Sea were not detected from the well-sampled Black Sea, although they were found in Gulf of Mexico populations that were also genetically similar to those in the Mediterranean Sea (pairwise FST = 0.010–0.032), raising the possibility of multiple invasion sources. Multiple introductions from a combination of Black Sea and native region sources

  19. Using large scale surveys to investigate seasonal variations in seabird distribution and abundance. Part I: The North Western Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pettex, Emeline; David, Léa; Authier, Matthieu; Blanck, Aurélie; Dorémus, Ghislain; Falchetto, Hélène; Laran, Sophie; Monestiez, Pascal; Van Canneyt, Olivier; Virgili, Auriane; Ridoux, Vincent

    2017-07-01

    Scientific investigation in offshore areas are logistically challenging and expensive, therefore the available knowledge on seabird at sea distribution and abundance, as well as their seasonal variations, remains limited. To investigate the seasonal variability in seabird distribution and abundance in the North-Western Mediterranean Sea (NWMS), we conducted two large-scale aerial surveys in winter 2011-12 and summer 2012, covering a 181,400 km2 area. Following a strip-transect method, observers recorded a total of 4141 seabird sightings in winter and 2334 in summer, along 32,213 km. Using geostatistical methods, we generated sightings density maps for both seasons, as well as estimates of density and abundance. Most taxa showed seasonal variations in their density and distribution patterns, as they used the area either for wintering or for breeding. Highest densities of seabirds were recorded during winter, although large-sized shearwaters, storm petrels and terns were more abundant during summer. Consequently, with nearly 170,000 seabirds estimated in winter, the total abundance was twice higher in winter. Coastal waters of the continental shelf were generally more exploited by seabirds, even though some species, such as Mediterranean gulls, black-headed gulls, little gulls and storm petrels were found at high densities in highly offshore waters. Our results revealed areas highly exploited by the seabird community in the NWMS, such as the Gulf of Lion, the Tuscan region, and the area between Corsica and Sardinia. In addition, these large-scale surveys provide a baseline for the monitoring of seabird at sea distribution, and could inform the EU Marine Strategy Framework Directive.

  20. Tracing early stages of species differentiation: Ecological, morphological and genetic divergence of Galápagos sea lion populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brunner Sylvia

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Oceans are high gene flow environments that are traditionally believed to hamper the build-up of genetic divergence. Despite this, divergence appears to occur occasionally at surprisingly small scales. The Galápagos archipelago provides an ideal opportunity to examine the evolutionary processes of local divergence in an isolated marine environment. Galápagos sea lions (Zalophus wollebaeki are top predators in this unique setting and have an essentially unlimited dispersal capacity across the entire species range. In theory, this should oppose any genetic differentiation. Results We find significant ecological, morphological and genetic divergence between the western colonies and colonies from the central region of the archipelago that are exposed to different ecological conditions. Stable isotope analyses indicate that western animals use different food sources than those from the central area. This is likely due to niche partitioning with the second Galápagos eared seal species, the Galápagos fur seal (Arctocephalus galapagoensis that exclusively dwells in the west. Stable isotope patterns correlate with significant differences in foraging-related skull morphology. Analyses of mitochondrial sequences as well as microsatellites reveal signs of initial genetic differentiation. Conclusion Our results suggest a key role of intra- as well as inter-specific niche segregation in the evolution of genetic structure among populations of a highly mobile species under conditions of free movement. Given the monophyletic arrival of the sea lions on the archipelago, our study challenges the view that geographical barriers are strictly needed for the build-up of genetic divergence. The study further raises the interesting prospect that in social, colonially breeding mammals additional forces, such as social structure or feeding traditions, might bear on the genetic partitioning of populations.

  1. Pup Vibrissae Stable Isotopes Reveal Geographic Differences in Adult Female Southern Sea Lion Habitat Use during Gestation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alastair M M Baylis

    Full Text Available Individuals within populations often differ substantially in habitat use, the ecological consequences of which can be far reaching. Stable isotope analysis provides a convenient and often cost effective means of indirectly assessing the habitat use of individuals that can yield valuable insights into the spatiotemporal distribution of foraging specialisations within a population. Here we use the stable isotope ratios of southern sea lion (Otaria flavescens pup vibrissae at the Falkland Islands, in the South Atlantic, as a proxy for adult female habitat use during gestation. A previous study found that adult females from one breeding colony (Big Shag Island foraged in two discrete habitats, inshore (coastal or offshore (outer Patagonian Shelf. However, as this species breeds at over 70 sites around the Falkland Islands, it is unclear if this pattern is representative of the Falkland Islands as a whole. In order to characterize habitat use, we therefore assayed carbon (δ13C and nitrogen (δ15N ratios from 65 southern sea lion pup vibrissae, sampled across 19 breeding colonies at the Falkland Islands. Model-based clustering of pup isotope ratios identified three distinct clusters, representing adult females that foraged inshore, offshore, and a cluster best described as intermediate. A significant difference was found in the use of inshore and offshore habitats between West and East Falkland and between the two colonies with the largest sample sizes, both of which are located in East Falkland. However, habitat use was unrelated to the proximity of breeding colonies to the Patagonian Shelf, a region associated with enhanced biological productivity. Our study thus points towards other factors, such as local oceanography and its influence on resource distribution, playing a prominent role in inshore and offshore habitat use.

  2. Pup Vibrissae Stable Isotopes Reveal Geographic Differences in Adult Female Southern Sea Lion Habitat Use during Gestation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baylis, Alastair M M; Kowalski, Gabriele J; Voigt, Christian C; Orben, Rachael A; Trillmich, Fritz; Staniland, Iain J; Hoffman, Joseph I

    2016-01-01

    Individuals within populations often differ substantially in habitat use, the ecological consequences of which can be far reaching. Stable isotope analysis provides a convenient and often cost effective means of indirectly assessing the habitat use of individuals that can yield valuable insights into the spatiotemporal distribution of foraging specialisations within a population. Here we use the stable isotope ratios of southern sea lion (Otaria flavescens) pup vibrissae at the Falkland Islands, in the South Atlantic, as a proxy for adult female habitat use during gestation. A previous study found that adult females from one breeding colony (Big Shag Island) foraged in two discrete habitats, inshore (coastal) or offshore (outer Patagonian Shelf). However, as this species breeds at over 70 sites around the Falkland Islands, it is unclear if this pattern is representative of the Falkland Islands as a whole. In order to characterize habitat use, we therefore assayed carbon (δ13C) and nitrogen (δ15N) ratios from 65 southern sea lion pup vibrissae, sampled across 19 breeding colonies at the Falkland Islands. Model-based clustering of pup isotope ratios identified three distinct clusters, representing adult females that foraged inshore, offshore, and a cluster best described as intermediate. A significant difference was found in the use of inshore and offshore habitats between West and East Falkland and between the two colonies with the largest sample sizes, both of which are located in East Falkland. However, habitat use was unrelated to the proximity of breeding colonies to the Patagonian Shelf, a region associated with enhanced biological productivity. Our study thus points towards other factors, such as local oceanography and its influence on resource distribution, playing a prominent role in inshore and offshore habitat use.

  3. New Fisheries-related data from the Mediterranean Sea (October 2015

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. TSAGARAKIS

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available In this third Collective Article, with fisheries-related data from the Mediterranean Sea, we present the historical length distribution of Lophius budegassa in the catch of commercial trawlers in the Greek seas; length-weight and length-length relationships of five flatfish species (Lepidorhombus boscii, L. whiffiagonis, Platichthys flesus, Pegusa lascaris and Solea solea from different coastal areas of Turkey (Black Sea and Eastern Mediterranean Sea; growth of settled Polyprion americanus and length-weight relationships of this species and of Deltentosteus quadrimaculatus, Capros aper and three commercially important groupers in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea; the age, growth and mortality of Zosterisessor ophiocephalus in the Eastern Adriatic Sea; the length-weight relationship and condition factor of Atherina boyeri in a Central Mediterranean semi-isolated lagoon, and also the length-weight and length-length relationships of three Alburnus species from different inland waters in Turkey.

  4. Survival and natality rate observations of California sea lions at San Miguel Island, California conducted by Alaska Fisheries Science Center, National Marine Mammal Laboratory from 1987-09-20 to 2014-09-25 (NCEI Accession 0145167)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The dataset contains initial capture and marking data for California sea lion (Zalophus californianus) pups at San Miguel Island, California and subsequent...

  5. California sea lion and northern fur seal censuses conducted at Channel Islands, California by Alaska Fisheries Science Center from 1969-07-31 to 2015-08-08 (NCEI Accession 0145165)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Marine Mammal Laboratories' California Current Ecosystem Program (AFSC/NOAA) initiated and maintains census programs for California sea lions (Zalophus...

  6. Hookworm intensity of infection in California sea lion and northern fur seal pups collected at haulouts/rookeries in California from 1996-07-17 to 2003-01-16 (NCEI Accession 0141164)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — There are various causes of mortality for California sea lion (Zalophus californianus) and northern fur seal (Callorhinus ursinus) pups. This dataset contains...

  7. Food habits studies of Steller sea lions in Washington, California conducted by Alaska Fisheries Science Center, National Marine Mammal Laboratory from 1993-05-01 to 1999-10-01 (NCEI Accession 0145304)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — From 1993 to 1999, The National Marine Mammal Laboratories' California Current Ecosystem Program (AFSC/NOAA) collected fecal samples from Steller sea lions in...

  8. Wind driven general circulation of the Mediterranean Sea simulated with a Spectral Element Ocean Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molcard, A.; Pinardi, N.; Iskandarani, M.; Haidvogel, D. B.

    2002-05-01

    This work is an attempt to simulate the Mediterranean Sea general circulation with a Spectral Finite Element Model. This numerical technique associates the geometrical flexibility of the finite elements for the proper coastline definition with the precision offered by spectral methods. The model is reduced gravity and we study the wind-driven ocean response in order to explain the large scale sub-basin gyres and their variability. The study period goes from January 1987 to December 1993 and two forcing data sets are used. The effect of wind variability in space and time is analyzed and the relationship between wind stress curl and ocean response is stressed. Some of the main permanent structures of the general circulation (Gulf of Lions cyclonic gyre, Rhodes gyre, Gulf of Syrte anticylone) are shown to be induced by permanent wind stress curl structures. The magnitude and spatial variability of the wind is important in determining the appearance or disappearance of some gyres (Tyrrhenian anticyclonic gyre, Balearic anticyclonic gyre, Ionian cyclonic gyre). An EOF analysis of the seasonal variability indicates that the weakening and strengthening of the Levantine basin boundary currents is a major component of the seasonal cycle in the basin. The important discovery is that seasonal and interannual variability peak at the same spatial scales in the ocean response and that the interannual variability includes the change in amplitude and phase of the seasonal cycle in the sub-basin scale gyres and boundary currents. The Coriolis term in the vorticity balance seems to be responsible for the weakening of anticyclonic structures and their total disappearance when they are close to a boundary. The process of adjustment to winds produces a train of coastally trapped gravity waves which travel around the eastern and western basins, respectively in approximately 6 months. This corresponds to a phase velocity for the wave of about 1 m/s, comparable to an average velocity of

  9. Age and growth determination by skeletochronology in loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta from the Mediterranean Sea

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    Paolo Casale

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Skeletochronology was applied to humerus bones to assess the age and growth rates of loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta in the Mediterranean Sea. Fifty-five dead turtles with curved carapace lengths (CCL ranging from 24 to 86.5 cm were collected from the central Mediterranean. Sections of humeri were histologically processed to analyze annual growth marks. Two approaches were used to estimate the somatic growth in the form of a von Bertalanffy growth function. The first approach was based on calculating the total number of growth marks, which corresponds to the age of turtles at death. The second approach estimates the carapace length at old growth marks in order to provide the growth rate of each turtle. The observed individual growth rates ranged from 1.4 to 6.2 cm yr–1, and showed both elevated inter- and intra-individual variability possibly related to the environmental variability experienced by turtles during their lifetime. Both approaches gave similar results and suggest that Mediterranean loggerhead turtles take 14.9 to 28.5 years to reach a CCL of 66.5 to 84.7 cm. This size corresponds to the average size of nesting females found in the most important Mediterranean nesting sites and can be considered the approximate size at maturity.

  10. Silica cycling in the ultra-oligotrophic Eastern Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. D. Krom

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Although silica is a key plant nutrient there have been few studies aimed at understanding the Si cycle in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea (EMS. Here we use a combination of new measurements and literature values to explain the silicic acid distribution across the basin and to calculate a silica budget to identify the key controlling processes. The surface water concentration of ~ 1 μM, which is unchanging seasonally across the basin was due to the inflow of Western Mediterranean Sea (WMS water at the Straits of Sicily. It does not change seasonally because there is only a sparse population of diatoms due to the low nutrient (N and P supply to the photic zone in the EMS. The concentration of silicic acid in the deep water of the western Ionian Sea (6.3 μM close to the S. Adriatic area of formation was due to the preformed silicic acid (3 μM plus biogenic silica (BSi from the dissolution of diatoms from the winter phytoplankton bloom (3.2 μM. The increase of 4.4 μM across the deep water of the EMS was due to silicic acid formed from in-situ diagenetic weathering of alumina-silicate minerals fluxing out of the sediment. The major inputs to the EMS are silicic acid and BSi inflowing from the western Mediterranean (121 × 109 mol Si year−1 silicic acid and 16 × 109 mol Si year−1 BSi, silicic acid fluxing from the sediment (54 × 109 mol Si year−1, riverine (27 × 109 mol Si year−1 and subterranean ground water (9.7 × 109 mol Si year−1 inputs, with only a minor direct input from dissolution of dust in the water column (1 × 109 mol Si year−1. This budget shows the importance of rapidly dissolving BSi and in-situ weathering of alumino-silicate minerals as sources of silica to balance the net export of silicic acid at the Straits of Sicily. Future measurements to improve the accuracy of this preliminary budget have been identified.

  11. Interannual differences for sea turtles bycatch in Spanish longliners from Western Mediterranean Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Báez, José C; Macías, David; García-Barcelona, Salvador; Real, Raimundo

    2014-01-01

    Recent studies showed that regional abundance of loggerhead and leatherback turtles could oscillate interannually according to oceanographic and climatic conditions. The Western Mediterranean is an important fishing area for the Spanish drifting longline fleet, which mainly targets swordfish, bluefin tuna, and albacore. Due to the spatial overlapping in fishing activity and turtle distribution, there is an increasing sea turtle conservation concern. The main goal of this study is to analyse the interannual bycatch of loggerhead and leatherback turtles by the Spanish Mediterranean longline fishery and to test the relationship between the total turtle by-catch of this fishery and the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO). During the 14 years covered in this study, the number of sea turtle bycatches was 3,940 loggerhead turtles and 8 leatherback turtles, 0.499 loggerhead turtles/1000 hooks and 0.001014 leatherback turtles/1000 hooks. In the case of the loggerhead turtle the positive phase of the NAO favours an increase of loggerhead turtles in the Western Mediterranean Sea. However, in the case of leatherback turtle the negative phase of the NAO favours the presence of leatherback turtle. This contraposition could be related to the different ecophysiological response of both species during their migration cycle.

  12. Interannual Differences for Sea Turtles Bycatch in Spanish Longliners from Western Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José C. Báez

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Recent studies showed that regional abundance of loggerhead and leatherback turtles could oscillate interannually according to oceanographic and climatic conditions. The Western Mediterranean is an important fishing area for the Spanish drifting longline fleet, which mainly targets swordfish, bluefin tuna, and albacore. Due to the spatial overlapping in fishing activity and turtle distribution, there is an increasing sea turtle conservation concern. The main goal of this study is to analyse the interannual bycatch of loggerhead and leatherback turtles by the Spanish Mediterranean longline fishery and to test the relationship between the total turtle by-catch of this fishery and the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO. During the 14 years covered in this study, the number of sea turtle bycatches was 3,940 loggerhead turtles and 8 leatherback turtles, 0.499 loggerhead turtles/1000 hooks and 0.001014 leatherback turtles/1000 hooks. In the case of the loggerhead turtle the positive phase of the NAO favours an increase of loggerhead turtles in the Western Mediterranean Sea. However, in the case of leatherback turtle the negative phase of the NAO favours the presence of leatherback turtle. This contraposition could be related to the different ecophysiological response of both species during their migration cycle.

  13. Probabilistic Tsunami Hazard Assessment - Application to the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sorensen, M. B.; Spada, M.; Babeyko, A.; Wiemer, S.; Grünthal, G.

    2009-12-01

    Following several large tsunami events around the world in the recent years, the tsunami hazard is becoming an increasing concern. The traditional way of assessing tsunami hazard has been through deterministic scenario calculations which provide the expected wave heights due to a given tsunami source, usually a worst-case scenario. For quantitative hazard and risk assessment, however, it is necessary to move towards a probabilistic framework. In this study we focus on earthquake generated tsunamis and present a scheme for probabilistic tsunami hazard assessment (PTHA). Our PTHA methodology is based on the use of Monte-Carlo simulations and follows probabilistic seismic hazard assessment methodologies closely. The PTHA is performed in four steps. First, earthquake and tsunami catalogues are analyzed in order to define a number of potential tsunami sources in the study area. For each of these sources, activity rates, maximum earthquake magnitude and uncertainties are assigned. Following, a synthetic earthquake catalogue is established, based on the information about the sources. The third step is to calculate multiple synthetic tsunami scenarios for all potentially tsunamigenic earthquakes in the synthetic catalogue. The tsunami scenarios are then combined at the fourth step to generate hazard curves and maps. We implement the PTHA methodology in the Mediterranean Sea, where numerous tsunami events have been reported in history. We derive a 100000 year-long catalog of potentially tsunamigenic earthquakes and calculate tsunami propagation scenarios for ca. 85000 M6.5+ earthquakes from the synthetic catalog. Results show that the highest tsunami hazard is attributed to the Eastern Mediterranean region, but that also the Western Mediterranean can experience significant tsunami waves for long return periods. Hazard maps will be presented for a range of probability levels together with hazard curves for selected critical locations.

  14. Biodiversity data requirements for systematic conservation planning in the Mediterranean Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Levin, Noam; Coll, Marta; Fraschetti, Simonetta

    2014-01-01

    that the availability and spatial resolution of information required for setting conservation goals largely varies among and within the countries surrounding the Mediterranean Sea, with more and better quality data often available for the European countries located in the western Mediterranean Sea. Additionally...... in the Mediterranean Sea, data on the spatial distribution of ecological features (abiotic variables, species, communities, habitats and ecosystems) is required to inform conservation scientists and planners. However, the spatial data required is often lacking. In this review, we aim to address the status of our...

  15. Assessing Evaporation Duct Variability In The Eastern Mediterranean Sea In Support Of Radar And Radio Communications

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-12-01

    EVAPORATION DUCT VARIABILITY IN THE EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN SEA IN SUPPORT OF RADAR AND RADIO COMMUNICATIONS by Süleyman C. Gürbüz December 2016...MEDITERRANEAN SEA IN SUPPORT OF RADAR AND RADIO COMMUNICATIONS 5. FUNDING NUMBERS 6. AUTHOR(S) Süleyman C. Gürbüz 7. PERFORMING ORGANIZATION NAME(S...IN THE EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN SEA IN SUPPORT OF RADAR AND RADIO COMMUNICATIONS Süleyman C. Gürbüz Lieutenant Junior Grade, Turkish Navy B.S

  16. Vertical diffusion processes in the Eastern Mediterranean - Black Sea System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kioroglou, Sotiris; Tragou, Elina; Zervakis, Vassilis; Georgopoulos, Dimitris; Herut, Barak; Gertman, Isaak; Kovacevic, Vedrana; Özsoy, Emin; Tutsak, Ersin

    2014-07-01

    The identification and examination of ‘complete' potential density overturns in CTD profiles, within the framework of SESAME project, are employed to assess vertical eddy diffusivities, mostly in the top 100 m of the water column, for a broad area covering the East Mediterranean, the Turkish Straits and the Black Sea. The implementation of this method shows that, mixing induced by mechanical turbulence is enhanced in frontal areas, in the proximity of straits and inside anticyclones; furthermore, that mechanical turbulence is insignificant, down to the scale of CTD resolution, within areas of double diffusive staircases, encountered in deep layers of the water column. Consequently, only laminar theories about double diffusion are applied for assessing diffusivities therein. Susceptibility to different types of double diffusion seems to be related to the interaction of different types of water masses.

  17. Rapid Environmental Fluctuations Recorded over the Last Glacial/Interglacial Cycle in the Sediments from Borehole PRGL1-4 (Gulf of Lions; Western Mediterranean) using Radiogenic Isotopes (Sr & Nd)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nizou, J.

    2015-12-01

    The study of sediments deposited and preserved in oceanic basins unable us to examine how terrigenous sediment supply varied through time in relation to paleoenvironmental and climatic changes on land. The geochemical and isotopic compositions of marine sediment are used to unravel its provenance, and provide information about its formation. Providing that the paleoclimatic frame is known, such data give an insight into the rock-source location and allow us to decipher between genetic processes of mechanical erosion and chemical alteration. Borehole PRGL1-4 (European project PROMESS), located in the Gulf of Lions (W Mediterranean) at 300 mwd, was investigated geochemically at high-temporal resolution over the last glacial/interglacial cycle (i.e. 130 ka) to study sediment-source variations during rapid climate changes. Besides, sediments originating from the Rhône's and the Pyreneo-Languedocian's catchment areas have been analyzed to measure the isotopic composition of five source end-members that are the Alps, the Higher Rhône valley, the Lower Rhône valley, the Languedoc and the Pyrenees. Epsilon Nd and 87Sr/86Sr were measured on 60 samples encompassing 4 marine isotopic stages with an emphasis on Heinrich events. The epsilon Nd values of PRGL1-4 lean towards the Lower Rhône valley unradiogenic end-member during cold stadial intervals, and towards the Alpine radiogenic end-member during warm interstadials. The presence of an ice cap over the crystalline Alpine watershed during cold phases could prevent the sediments originating from this region from reaching the Gulf of Lions. The same pattern is observed during the time of Heinrich events. An influence of the sea level variations on the sedimentation at the borehole site during the Heinrich events is unlikely since they are only 10 to 15 m in amplitude. Furthermore, a major isotopic shift in epsilon Nd mean values is displayed around 40 ka that coincides with the connection of the Durance to the Rhône River

  18. Counts of Alaska Steller sea lion adult and juvenile (non-pup) conducted on rookeries and haul-outs in Alaska Aleutian Islands, Bering Sea, and others from 1904-01-01 to 2015-07-18 (NCEI Accession 0128190)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This dataset contains counts of adult and juvenile (non-pup) Steller sea lions on rookeries and haul-outs in Alaska made between 1904 and 2015. Non-pup counts have...

  19. Corrigendum to "Foraging behavior of lactating South American sea lions (Otaria flavescens) and spatial-temporal resource overlap with the Uruguayan fisheries" [Deep-Sea Res. II 88-89 (2013) 106-109

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riet-Sapriza, Federico G.; Costa, Daniel P.; Franco-Trecu, Valentina; Marín, Yamandú; Chocca, Julio; González, Bernardo; Beathyate, Gastón; Louise Chilvers, B.; Hückstadt, Luis A.

    2016-10-01

    The authors of Riet-Sapriza et al. (2013) regret that after publication of the original manuscript an error was found in the estimation of lactating South American sea lions prey consumption and led to an overestimation of the daily and annual prey consumption.

  20. Investigation of sea level trends and the effect of the north atlantic oscillation (NAO) on the black sea and the eastern mediterranean sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ozgenc Aksoy, Aysegul

    2017-07-01

    The North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) has significant effects on sea levels, weather, and climate. In this study, the sea level trends and the effects of the North Atlantic Oscillation Indices (NAOI) on annual mean sea level data were assessed for the Black Sea and the Eastern Mediterranean Sea. The trends of sea level and NAOI were determined using Mann-Kendall dimensionless z statistics. Generally, upward sea level trends were detected for the Black Sea and the Eastern Mediterranean Sea. In the Black Sea, significant and continuous upward trends were detected after the year 1950. Weaker trends were detected for the Eastern part of the Mediterranean Sea. Sea level trends were correlated with trends in NAO indices; negative correlations were detected for the Black Sea, whereas positive correlations were found for the Eastern Mediterranean Sea. Paired t tests were performed to determine the turning points for all sea level data sets. The value of t was positive for all data sets, which means that the mean value of the data set before the turning point was smaller than the mean value of the data set after the turning point.

  1. On the occurrence of Zenopsis conchifer (Lowe, 1852 (Osteichthyes, Zeidae in the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fernández, A. M.

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available The capture of four specimens of Silvery John Dory (Zenopsis conchifer,a species recorded in the Mediterranean Sea for the first time in 2006, is reported from the Iberian coast (western Mediterranean. One of the specimens was caught near the Strait of Gibraltar and is probably a vagrant. Despite these catches, there is no evidence of a self–sustaining population, so this species should be considered as alien in the Mediterranean.

  2. A seasonal model of the Mediterranean Sea general circulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roussenov, Vassil; Stanev, Emil; Artale, Vincenzo; Pinardi, Nadia

    1995-07-01

    This paper describes the seasonal characteristics of the Mediterranean Sea general circulation as simulated by a primitive equation general circulation model. The forcing is composed of climatological monthly mean atmospheric parameters, which are used to compute the heat and momentum budgets at the air-sea interface of the model. This allows heat fluxes to be determined by a realistic air-sea interaction physics. The Strait of Gibraltar is open, and the model resolution is ? in the horizontal and 19 levels in the vertical. The results show the large seasonal cycle of the circulation and its transient characteristics. The heat budget at the surface is characterized by lateral boundary intensifications occurring in downwelling and up welling areas of the basin. The general circulation is composed of subbasin gyres, and cyclonic motion dominates the northern and anticyclonic motion the southern part of the basin. The Atlantic stream which enters from Gibraltar and assumes the form of different boundary current subsystems is a coherent structure at the surface. At depth it appears as current segments and jets around a vigorous gyre system. The seasonal variability is manifested not only by a change in amplitude and location of the gyres but also by the appearance of seasonally recurrent gyres in different parts of the basin. Distinct westward propagation of these gyres occurs, together with amplitude changes. For the first time a Mersa-Matruh Gyre is successfully simulated due to the introduction of our heat fluxes at the air-sea interface. The seasonal thermocline is formed each summer, and a deep winter mixed layer is produced in the region of Levantine intermediate water formation. Deep water renewal does not occur, probably due to the climatological forcing used.

  3. The influence of time in captivity, food intake and acute trauma on blood analytes of juvenile Steller sea lions, Eumetopias jubatus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skinner, John P.; Tuomi, Pam A.; Mellish, Jo-Ann E.

    2015-01-01

    The Steller sea lion, Eumetopias jubatus, has experienced regionally divergent population trends over recent decades. One potential mechanism for this disparity is that local factors cause reduced health and, therefore, reduced survival of individuals. The use of blood parameters to assess sea lion health may help to identify whether malnutrition, disease and stress are important drivers of current trends, but such assessments require species-specific knowledge of how parameters respond to various health challenges. We used principal components analysis to identify which key blood parameters (principal analytes) best described changes in health for temporarily captive juvenile Steller sea lions in known conditions. Generalized additive mixed models were used to estimate the changes in principal analytes with food intake, time in captivity and acute trauma associated with hot-iron branding and transmitter implant surgery. Of the 17 blood parameters examined, physiological changes for juvenile sea lions were best described using the following six principal analytes: red blood cell counts, white blood cell counts, globulin, platelets, glucose and total bilirubin. The white blood cell counts and total bilirubin declined over time in captivity, whereas globulin increased. Elevated red blood cell counts, white blood cell counts and total bilirubin and reduced globulin values were associated with lower food intake. After branding, white blood cell counts were elevated for the first 30 days, while globulin and platelets were elevated for the first 15 days only. After implant surgery, red blood cell counts and globulin remained elevated for 30 days, while white blood cell counts remained elevated during the first 15 days only. Glucose was unassociated with the factors we studied. These results were used to provide expected ranges for principal analytes at different levels of food intake and in response to the physical challenges of branding and implant surgery

  4. Regional variability in diving physiology and behavior in a widely distributed air-breathing marine predator, the South American sea lion (Otaria byronia).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hückstädt, Luis A; Tift, Michael S; Riet-Sapriza, Federico; Franco-Trecu, Valentina; Baylis, Alastair M M; Orben, Rachael A; Arnould, John P Y; Sepulveda, Maritza; Santos-Carvallo, Macarena; Burns, Jennifer M; Costa, Daniel P

    2016-08-01

    Our understanding of how air-breathing marine predators cope with environmental variability is limited by our inadequate knowledge of their ecological and physiological parameters. Because of their wide distribution along both coasts of the sub-continent, South American sea lions (Otaria byronia) provide a valuable opportunity to study the behavioral and physiological plasticity of a marine predator in different environments. We measured the oxygen stores and diving behavior of South American sea lions throughout most of its range, allowing us to demonstrate that diving ability and behavior vary across its range. We found no significant differences in mass-specific blood volumes of sea lions among field sites and a negative relationship between mass-specific oxygen storage and size, which suggests that exposure to different habitats and geographical locations better explains oxygen storage capacities and diving capability in South American sea lions than body size alone. The largest animals in our study (individuals from Uruguay) were the shallowest and shortest duration divers, and had the lowest mass-specific total body oxygen stores, while the deepest and longest duration divers (individuals from southern Chile) had significantly larger mass-specific oxygen stores, despite being much smaller animals. Our study suggests that the physiology of air-breathing diving predators is not fixed, but that it can be adjusted, to a certain extent, depending on the ecological setting and or habitat. These adjustments can be thought of as a 'training effect': as the animal continues to push its physiological capacity through greater hypoxic exposure, its breath-holding capacity increases.

  5. Ancient female philopatry, asymmetric male gene flow, and synchronous population expansion support the influence of climatic oscillations on the evolution of South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gehara, Marcelo C. M.; Fraga, Lúcia D.; Lopes, Fernando; Túnez, Juan Ignacio; Cassini, Marcelo H.; Majluf, Patricia; Cárdenas-Alayza, Susana; Pavés, Héctor J.; Crespo, Enrique Alberto; García, Nestor; Loizaga de Castro, Rocío; Hoelzel, A. Rus; Sepúlveda, Maritza; Olavarría, Carlos; Valiati, Victor Hugo; Quiñones, Renato; Pérez-Alvarez, Maria Jose; Ott, Paulo Henrique

    2017-01-01

    The South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens) is widely distributed along the southern Atlantic and Pacific coasts of South America with a history of significant commercial exploitation. We aimed to evaluate the population genetic structure and the evolutionary history of South American sea lion along its distribution by analyses of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and 10 nuclear microsatellites loci. We analyzed 147 sequences of mtDNA control region and genotyped 111 individuals of South American sea lion for 10 microsatellite loci, representing six populations (Peru, Northern Chile, Southern Chile, Uruguay (Brazil), Argentina and Falkland (Malvinas) Islands) and covering the entire distribution of the species. The mtDNA phylogeny shows that haplotypes from the two oceans comprise two very divergent clades as observed in previous studies, suggesting a long period (>1 million years) of low inter-oceanic female gene flow. Bayesian analysis of bi-parental genetic diversity supports significant (but less pronounced than mitochondrial) genetic structure between Pacific and Atlantic populations, although also suggested some inter-oceanic gene flow mediated by males. Higher male migration rates were found in the intra-oceanic population comparisons, supporting very high female philopatry in the species. Demographic analyses showed that populations from both oceans went through a large population expansion ~10,000 years ago, suggesting a very similar influence of historical environmental factors, such as the last glacial cycle, on both regions. Our results support the proposition that the Pacific and Atlantic populations of the South American sea lion should be considered distinct evolutionarily significant units, with at least two managements units in each ocean. PMID:28654647

  6. Population dynamics of Antarctophthirus microchir (Anoplura: Echinophthiriidae) in pups from South American sea lion, Otaria flavescens, in Northern Patagonia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aznar, F J; Leonardi, M S; Berón Vera, B; Vales, D G; Ameghino, S; Raga, J A; Crespo, E A

    2009-03-01

    We analysed population dynamics of the louse Antarctophthirus microchir in pups of the South American sea lion, Otaria flavescens, at the Punta León rookery (Argentina) over a period of 2 years. A total of 136 pups were aged and marked at the beginning of the lactation period ashore, then sampled for lice at different times within 30 days. Sampling was restricted to the chest and belly, two sites where lice were especially abundant. This concentration on ventral areas might protect lice from thermal stress in the austral summer. Infestation patterns in pups 3 days old suggested that the potential for transmission increased from first nymphs to adults. Population trends of each instar with pup age, based on standardised values of abundance, were conserved between years, reflecting the basic dynamics of recruitment and reproduction. However, trends based on log-transformed abundances varied significantly between years; apparently, environmental conditions affected growth of lice populations differently each year. Stage-based deterministic models for population growth of A. microchir suggested generation times from 18 to 23 days. Accordingly, only 2 lice generations might be produced before pups start going to the sea. Shortening the cycle to accommodate a third generation might be risky, whereas a 2-generation cycle might at least result in larger females producing higher numbers of viable offspring.

  7. The timing of Mediterranean sapropel deposition relative to insolation, sea-level and African monsoon changes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Grant, K. M.; Grimm, R.; Mikolajewicz, U.; Marino, G.; Ziegler, M.; Rohling, E. J.

    2016-01-01

    The Mediterranean basin is sensitive to global sea-level changes and African monsoon variability on orbital timescales. Both of these processes are thought to be important to the deposition of organic-rich sediment layers or 'sapropels' throughout the eastern Mediterranean, yet their relative

  8. First record of the polychaetous annelid Diopatra micrura Pires et al., 2010 in the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. ARIAS

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Until now the only recognised species of the onuphid genus Diopatra in the Mediterranean Sea was D. neapolitana. This paper reports the presence of another species, D. micrura, in the western Mediterranean, occurring in shallow waters along the coasts of southeastern Spain.

  9. First record of the polychaetous annelid Diopatra micrura Pires et al., 2010 in the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. ARIAS

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Until now the only recognised species of the onuphid genus Diopatra in the Mediterranean Sea was D. neapolitana. This paper reports the presence of another species, D. micrura, in the western Mediterranean, occurring in shallow waters along the coasts of southeastern Spain. 

  10. The timing of Mediterranean sapropel deposition relative to insolation, sea-level and African monsoon changes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Grant, K. M.; Grimm, R.; Mikolajewicz, U.; Marino, G.; Ziegler, M.; Rohling, E. J.

    2016-01-01

    The Mediterranean basin is sensitive to global sea-level changes and African monsoon variability on orbital timescales. Both of these processes are thought to be important to the deposition of organic-rich sediment layers or 'sapropels' throughout the eastern Mediterranean, yet their relative influe

  11. A new alien gastropod Pseudorhaphitoma iodolabiata (Hornung & Mermod, 1928 (Mangeliidae, Mollusca in the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. OZTURK

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available The study documents the occurrence of a new alien gastropod Pseudorhaphitoma iodolabiata in the Mediterranean Sea, collected inIskenderun Bay, Turkey, on September 2011. This record increases to 213 the number of alien molluscs in the Mediterranean.

  12. Molecular epidemiology of Cryptosporidium spp. and Giardia spp. in mussels (Mytilus californianus) and California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) from Central California.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adell, A D; Smith, W A; Shapiro, K; Melli, A; Conrad, P A

    2014-12-01

    Cryptosporidium and Giardia are of public health importance, with recognized transmission through recreational waters. Therefore, both can contaminate marine waters and shellfish, with potential to infect marine mammals in nearshore ecosystems. A 2-year study was conducted to evaluate the presence of Cryptosporidium and Giardia in mussels located at two distinct coastal areas in California, namely, (i) land runoff plume sites and (ii) locations near sea lion haul-out sites, as well as in feces of California sea lions (CSL) (Zalophus californianus) by the use of direct fluorescent antibody (DFA) detection methods and PCR with sequence analysis. In this study, 961 individual mussel hemolymph samples, 54 aliquots of pooled mussel tissue, and 303 CSL fecal samples were screened. Giardia duodenalis assemblages B and D were detected in hemolymph from mussels collected near two land runoff plume sites (Santa Rosa Creek and Carmel River), and assemblages C and D were detected in hemolymph from mussels collected near a sea lion haul-out site (White Rock). These results suggest that mussels are being contaminated by protozoa carried in terrestrial runoff and/or shed in the feces of CSL. Furthermore, low numbers of oocysts and cysts morphologically similar to Cryptosporidium and Giardia, respectively, were detected in CSL fecal samples, suggesting that CSL could be a source and a host of protozoan parasites in coastal environments. The results of this study showed that Cryptosporidium and Giardia spp. from the feces of terrestrial animals and CSL can contaminate mussels and coastal environments.

  13. Expression and immunohistochemical detection of leptin-like peptide in the gastrointestinal tract of the South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens) and the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Russo, Finizia; Gatta, Claudia; De Girolamo, Paolo; Cozzi, Bruno; Giurisato, Maristella; Lucini, Carla; Varricchio, Ettore

    2012-09-01

    This study provides an immunohistochemical approach to the expression of leptin in the gastrointestinal tract of the monogastric South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens), and the poligastric bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus). The specific organization of the gastrointestinal tract is examined in relation to the neuroendocrine regulation of the gut exerted by leptin. In the South American sea lion some leptin-like-immunoreactive (ir) cells, and endocrine type cells, were found in the pit of gastric mucosal folds and in the epithelium of duodenum as well as numerous neurons were detected in the submucosal and myenteric plexuses of the stomach. In the bottlenose dolphin, many leptin-like-ir cells, and exocrine type cells, were identified in the mucosal layer of the main stomach as well as several neurons and nervous fibers were detected in nervous plexuses of main stomach, pyloric stomach, proximal, and middle intestine. Our data suggest that the distribution of leptin-like peptides is similar in the two species, notwithstanding the different anatomical organization of the gastrointestinal apparatus of South American sea lion and bottlenose dolphin. These findings "suggest" the presence of a basal plan in the regulation of food intake, body weight, energy balance and of the gastrointestinal functions in general also in marine mammals with different and specific feeding habits.

  14. Octopus vulgaris (Cuvier, 1797) in the Mediterranean Sea: Genetic Diversity and Population Structure: e0149496

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Daniele De Luca; Gaetano Catanese; Gabriele Procaccini; Graziano Fiorito

    2016-01-01

      The common octopus, Octopus vulgaris Cuvier 1797, is a largely exploited cephalopod species in the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean, as well as along the coasts of Africa, Brazil and Japan...

  15. Recent sea surface temperature trends and future scenarios for the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohamed Shaltout

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available We analyse recent Mediterranean Sea surface temperatures (SSTs and their response to global change using 1/4-degree gridded advanced very-high-resolution radiometer (AVHRR daily SST data, 1982–2012. These data indicate significant annual warming (from 0.24 °C decade−1 west of the Strait of Gibraltar to 0.51 °C decade−1 over the Black Sea and significant spatial variation in annual average SST (from 15 °C over the Black Sea to 21 °C over the Levantine sub-basin. Ensemble mean scenarios indicate that the study area SST may experience significant warming, peaking at 2.6 °C century−1 in the Representative Concentration Pathways 85 (RCP85 scenario.

  16. Recent sea surface temperature trends and future scenarios for the Mediterranean Sea:

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohamed Shaltout

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available We analyse recent Mediterranean Sea surface temperatures (SSTs and their response to global change using 1/4-degree gridded advanced very-high-resolution radiometer (AVHRR daily SST data, 1982-2012. These data indicate significant annual warming (from 0.24°C decade-1 west of the Strait of Gibraltar to 0.51°C decade-1 over the Black Sea and significant spatial variation in annual average SST (from 15ºC over the Black Sea to 21°C over the Levantine sub-basin. Ensemble mean scenarios indicate that the study area SST may experience significant warming, peaking at 2.6°C century-1 in the Representative Concentration Pathways 85 (RCP85 scenario.

  17. Food-web traits of the North Aegean Sea ecosystem (Eastern Mediterranean) and comparison with other Mediterranean ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsagarakis, K.; Coll, M.; Giannoulaki, M.; Somarakis, S.; Papaconstantinou, C.; Machias, A.

    2010-06-01

    A mass-balance trophic model was built to describe the food-web traits of the North Aegean Sea (Strymonikos Gulf and Thracian Sea, Greece, Eastern Mediterranean) during the mid-2000s and to explore the impacts of fishing. This is the first food-web model representing the Aegean Sea, and results were presented and discussed in comparison to other previous ecosystems modelled from the western and the central areas of the basin (South Catalan and North-Central Adriatic Seas). Forty functional groups were defined, covering the entire trophic spectrum from lower to higher trophic levels. Emphasis was placed on commercial invertebrates and fish. The potential ecological role of the invasive ctenophore, Mnemiopsis leidyi, and several vulnerable groups (e.g., dolphins) was also explored. Results confirmed the spatial productivity patterns known for the Mediterranean Sea showing, for example, that the total biomass is highest in N.C. Adriatic and lowest in N. Aegean Sea. Accordingly, food-web flows and several ecosystem indicators like the mean transfer efficiency were influenced by these patterns. Nevertheless, all three systems shared some common features evidencing similarities of Mediterranean Sea ecosystems such as dominance of the pelagic fraction in terms of flows and strong benthic-pelagic coupling of zooplankton and benthic invertebrates through detritus. The importance of detritus highlighted the role of the microbial food-web, which was indirectly considered through detritus dynamics. Ciliates, mesozooplankton and several benthic invertebrate groups were shown as important elements of the ecosystem linking primary producers and detritus with higher trophic levels in the N. Aegean Sea. Adult anchovy was shown as the most important fish group in terms of production, consumption and overall effect on the rest of the ecological groups in the model, in line with results from the Western Mediterranean Sea. The five fishing fleets considered (both artisanal and

  18. Extant Rhabdosphaeraceae (coccolithophorids, class Prymnesiophyceae) from the Indian Ocean, Red Sea, Mediterranean Sea and North Atlantic Ocean

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kleijne, A.

    1992-01-01

    Rhabdosphaerids were consistently present as a minor constituent of the 1985 summer coccolithophorid flora in surface waters of the Indian Ocean, Red Sea, Mediterranean Sea and North Atlantic. Sixteen taxa are identified, belonging to seven genera, including the two new combinations Cyrtosphaera acu

  19. The Genus Lepidochitona Gray, 1821 (Mollusca: Polyplacophora) in the Northeastern Atlantic Ocean, The Mediterranean Sea and the Black Sea

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kaas, P.; Belle, van R.A.

    1981-01-01

    Nine species of Lepidochitona from the NE Atlantic and adjacent seas are described, two of which are new to science: L. monterosatoi from the Mediterranean Sea, and L. iberica from Ria de Arosa, NW Spain. The taxa Middendorffia Dall, 1882, and Mopaliella Thiele, 1909, are rejected and synonymized

  20. Reanalysis of biogeochemical properties in the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cossarini, Gianpiero; Teruzzi, Anna; Salon, Stefano; Solidoro, Cosimo

    2014-05-01

    In the 3D variational (3DVAR) assimilation approach the error covariance matrix can be decomposed in a series of operators. The decomposition makes the 3DVAR particularly suitable for marine biogeochemistry data assimilation, because of the reduced computational costs of the method and its modularity, which allows to define the covariance among the biogeochemical variables in a specific operator. In the present work, the results of 3DVAR assimilation of surface chlorophyll concentration in a multi-annual simulation of the Mediterranean Sea biogeochemistry are presented. The assimilated chlorophyll concentrations are obtained from satellite observations (Volpe et al. 2012). The multi-annual simulation is carried out using the OPATM-BFM model (Lazzari et al. 2012), which describes the low trophic web dynamics and is offline coupled with the MFS physical model (Oddo et al. 2009). In the OPATM-BFM four types of phytoplankton are simulated in terms of their content in carbon, nitrogen, phosphorous, silicon and chlorophyll. In the 3DVAR the error covariance matrix has been decomposed in three different operators, which account for the vertical, the horizontal and the biogeochemical covariance (Teruzzi et al. 2014). The biogeochemical operator propagates the result of the assimilation to the OPATM-BFM variables, providing innovation for the components of the four phytoplankton types. The biogeochemical covariance has been designed supposing that the assimilation preserves the physiological status and the relative abundances of phytoplankton types. Practically, the assimilation preserves the internal quotas of the components for each phytoplankton as long as the optimal growth rate condition are maintained. The quotas preservation is not applied when the phytoplankton is in severe declining growth phase, and the correction provided by the assimilation is set equal to zero. Moreover, the relative abundances among the phytoplankton functional types are preserved. The 3DVAR

  1. On the occurrence of the fireworm Eurythoe complanata complex (Annelida, Amphinomidae in the Mediterranean Sea with an updated revision of the alien Mediterranean amphinomids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrés Arias

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available The presence of two species within the Eurythoe complanata complex in the Mediterranean Sea is reported, as well as their geographical distributions. One species, Eurythoe laevisetis, occurs in the eastern and central Mediterranean, likely constituting the first historical introduction to the Mediterranean Sea and the other, Eurythoe complanata, in both eastern and Levantine basins. Brief notes on their taxonomy are also provided and their potential pathways for introduction to the Mediterranean are discussed. A simplified key to the Mediterranean amphinomid genera and species of Eurythoe and Linopherus is presented plus an updated revision of the alien amphinomid species reported previously from the Mediterranean Sea. A total of five exotic species have been included; information on their location, habitat, date of introduction and other relevant features is also provided.

  2. Pleuritis and suppurative pneumonia associated with a hypermucoviscosity phenotype of Klebsiella pneumoniae in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jang, Spencer; Wheeler, Liz; Carey, Roberta B; Jensen, Bette; Crandall, Claudia M; Schrader, Kimmi N; Jessup, David; Colegrove, Kathleen; Gulland, Frances M D

    2010-02-24

    The aim of this study is to document the isolation of a hypermucoviscosity (HMV) phenotype of Klebsiella pneumoniae from 25 cases of suppurative pneumonia and pleuritis and two cases of abscesses in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) from the central California coast, representing the first report of this zoonotic pathogen from the marine environment and only the second report in non-humans. Animals died 2h to 4 days after first being observed sick on beaches. Clinical signs varied from dyspnoea to coma. Gross post-mortem examination of 25 cases revealed fibrinous pleuritis, copious pus in the pleural cavity and suppurative bronchopneumonia. K. pneumoniae isolates obtained from lung and pleural swabs and the hepatic and subcuticular abscesses were highly mucoid on blood agar culture media and were positive to the "string test". Twenty-one of the 27 isolates were examined by PCR and all were positive for rmpA and K2wyz and negative for K1magA genes. Although pneumonia and pleuritis have previously commonly been observed in marine mammals, their association with pure cultures of a zoonotic bacteria, K. pneumoniae HMV phenotype, has not. This report provides further evidence of the role marine mammals play as sentinels of health risks to humans from coastal waters.

  3. Population genetic structure and historical population dynamics of the South American sea lion, Otaria flavescens, in north-central Patagonia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Túnez, Juan I; Cappozzo, Humberto L; Nardelli, Maximiliano; Cassini, Marcelo H

    2010-08-01

    The north-central Patagonian coast is the sea lions most abundant area in Argentina. As occurs along the entire Atlantic coast, the distribution of breeding colonies at this smaller geographical scale is also patchy, showing at least three areas with breeding activity. We study the genetic structure and historical population dynamics of the species in five colonies in this area, analysing a 508 base-pair segment of the D-loop control region. Otaria flavescens showed 10 haplotypes with 12 polymorphic sites. The genealogical relationship between haplotypes revealed a shallow pattern of phylogeographic structure. The analysis of molecular variance showed significant differences between colonies, however, pairwise comparisons only indicate significant differences between a pair of colonies belonging to different breeding areas. The pattern of haplotype differentiation and the mismatch distribution analysis suggest a possible bottleneck that would have occurred 64,000 years ago, followed by a demographic expansion of the three southernmost colonies. Thus, the historical population dynamics of O. flavescens in north-central Patagonia appears to be closely related with the dynamics of the Late Pleistocene glaciations.

  4. Discrimination of carbon and nitrogen isotopes from milk to serum and vibrissae in Alaska Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stegall, V.K.; Farley, Sean D.; Rea, Lorrie D.; Pitcher, K.W.; Rye, R.O.; Kester, C.L.; Stricker, C.A.; Bern, C.R.

    2008-01-01

    Knowledge of diet-tissue stable isotope discrimination is required to properly interpret stable isotope values and to identify possible diet shifts, such as might be expected from nursing through weaning. This study compared ??13C and ??15N of paired serum and vibrissal roots with those of ingested milk (n = 52) from free-ranging Steller sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus (Schreber, 1776)) pups (1-11 months) and juveniles (14-27 months) to estimate diet-tissue discrimination. Mean 15N enrichment from ingested milk to serum was 2.1??? ?? 0.6%??? and ??15N at the root of the vibrissae (representing current growth) were not significantly different from serum values. Milk was enriched for mean 13C by 5.0??? ?? 1.0%??? and 7.3??? ?? 1.2??? relative to serum and vibrissal roots, respectively, which was due to the presence of 13C-depleted lipids in milk. This was confirmed by lipid extraction from a subset of milk and serum samples, resulting in a 5.8??? ?? 1.0??? change only in milk. This study established that vibrissal roots and serum are reflective of a milk diet with approximately 2.0??? 15N enrichment, and vibrissal roots reflect serum and lipid-extracted milk values with approximately 2.0??? 13C enrichment. These discrimination factors are important to establish for stable isotope studies assessing diet shifts. ?? 2008 NRC.

  5. The history and transitent nature of salinity anomalies in the Mediterranean Sea from advanced reanalysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinardi, Nadia; Fratianni, Claudia; Lyubartsev, Vladyslav

    2015-04-01

    Long term, high resolution re-analyses of the Mediterranean Sea circulation and thermohaline structure are now available from the NextData and MyOcean projects. The first is a 60 years re-analysis (1953-2012) done with atmospheric AMIP forcing and the second is 25 years re-analysis (1987-2012) done with ECMWF atmospheric forcing re-analysis. Both concur to have a representation of the longest time series of salinity anomalies in the Mediterranean Sea, the highest space-time reconstruction ever done for the whole basin. The salinity anomalies of the Mediterranean Sea below seven hundred meters of the past 60 years are examined in comparison with the Eastern Mediterranean Transient, a phenomenon Dr. A.Hecht contributed to discover during POEM. Deep water salinity changes and Gibraltar Strait anomalies are also examined in the light of possible feedback mechanisms, as well as the structure and correlation of such salinity anomalies with atmospheric forcing.

  6. Rising Mediterranean Sea Surface Temperatures Amplify Extreme Summer Precipitation in Central Europe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volosciuk, Claudia; Maraun, Douglas; Semenov, Vladimir A.; Tilinina, Natalia; Gulev, Sergey K.; Latif, Mojib

    2016-08-01

    The beginning of the 21st century was marked by a number of severe summer floods in Central Europe associated with extreme precipitation (e.g., Elbe 2002, Oder 2010 and Danube 2013). Extratropical storms, known as Vb-cyclones, cause summer extreme precipitation events over Central Europe and can thus lead to such floodings. Vb-cyclones develop over the Mediterranean Sea, which itself strongly warmed during recent decades. Here we investigate the influence of increased Mediterranean Sea surface temperature (SST) on extreme precipitation events in Central Europe. To this end, we carry out atmosphere model simulations forced by average Mediterranean SSTs during 1970-1999 and 2000-2012. Extreme precipitation events occurring on average every 20 summers in the warmer-SST-simulation (2000-2012) amplify along the Vb-cyclone track compared to those in the colder-SST-simulation (1970-1999), on average by 17% in Central Europe. The largest increase is located southeast of maximum precipitation for both simulated heavy events and historical Vb-events. The responsible physical mechanism is increased evaporation from and enhanced atmospheric moisture content over the Mediterranean Sea. The excess in precipitable water is transported from the Mediterranean Sea to Central Europe causing stronger precipitation extremes over that region. Our findings suggest that Mediterranean Sea surface warming amplifies Central European precipitation extremes.

  7. Plankton in the open Mediterranean Sea: a review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siokou-Frangou, I.; Christaki, U.; Mazzocchi, M. G.; Montresor, M.; Ribera D'Alcalá, M.; Vaqué, D.; Zingone, A.

    2009-11-01

    We present an overview of the plankton studies conducted during the last 25 years in the epipelagic offshore waters of the Mediterranean Sea. This quasi-enclosed sea is characterized by a rich and complex physical dynamics that includes unique thermohaline features, particular multilayer circulation, topographic gyres, and meso- and sub-mesoscale activity. Recent investigations have basically confirmed the long-recognised oligotrophic character of this sea, which enhances along both the west-east, and the north-south directions. Nutrient availability is low, especially for phosphorous (N:P up to 60), although limitation may be relaxed by inputs from highly populated coasts and from the atmosphere. Phytoplankton biomass as chl-a, generally displays low values (less than 0.2 μg chl-a l-1) over large areas, with a modest late winter increase. A large bloom (up to 3 μg l-1) throughout the late winter and early spring is only observed in the NW area. Relatively high biomass peaks are also recorded in fronts and cyclonic gyres. A deep chlorophyll maximum is a~permanent feature for the whole basin (except during the late winter mixing). It progressively deepens from the Alboran Sea (30 m) to the easternmost Levantine basin (120 m). Primary production reveals a similar west-east decreasing trend and ranges from 59 to 150 g C m-2 y-1 (in situ measurements). Overall the basin is largely dominated by small-sized autotrophs, microheterotrophs and egg-carrying copepod species. The phytoplankton, the microbial (both autotrophic and heterotrophic) and the zooplankton components reveal a considerable diversity and variability over spatial and temporal scales, the latter less explored though. Examples are the wide diversity of dinoflagellates and coccolithophores, the multifarious role of diatoms or picoeukaryotes, and the distinct seasonal or spatial patterns of the species-reach copepod genera or families which dominate in the basin. Major dissimilarities between western and

  8. Comparison of two different sea-salt aerosol schemes as implemented in air quality models applied to the Mediterranean Basin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Jiménez-Guerrero

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available A number of attempts have been made to incorporate sea-salt aerosol (SSA source functions in chemistry transport models with varying results according to the complexity of the scheme considered. This contribution compares the inclusion of two different SSA algorithms in two chemistry transport models: CMAQ and CHIMERE. The main goal is to examine the differences in average SSA mass and composition and to study the seasonality of the prediction of SSA when applied to the Mediterranean area with high resolution for a reference year. Dry and wet deposition schemes are also analyzed to better understand the differences observed between both models in the target area. The applied emission algorithm in CHIMERE uses a semi-empirical formulation which obtains the surface emission rate of SSA as a function of the particle size and the surface wind speed raised to the power 3.41. The emission parameterization included within CMAQ is somehow more sophisticated, since fluxes of SSA are corrected with relative humidity. In order to evaluate their strengths and weaknesses, the participating algorithms as implemented in the chemistry transport models were evaluated against AOD measurements from Aeronet and available surface measurements in Southern Europe and the Mediterranean area, showing biases around −0.002 and −1.2 μg m−3, respectively. The results indicate that both models represent accurately the patterns and dynamics of SSA and its non-uniform behavior in the Mediterranean basin, showing a strong seasonality. The levels of SSA strongly vary across the Western and the Eastern Mediterranean, reproducing CHIMERE higher annual levels in the Aegean Sea (12 μg m−3 and CMAQ in the Gulf of Lion (9 μg m−3. The large difference found for the ratio PM2.5/total SSA in CMAQ and CHIMERE is also investigated. The dry and wet removal rates are very similar for both models despite the different schemes

  9. Abyssal and deep circulation in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea (Ionian Sea)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Artale, Vincenzo; Bensi, Manuel; Falcini, Federico; Marullo, Salvatore; Rubino, Angelo

    2016-04-01

    In the mid-1990s, experimental evidences on the Eastern Mediterranean Transient (EMT) were presented and it was shown that the Mediterranean abyssal circulation is not in a steady state but can be subjected to episodic sudden changes (Roether et al., 1996). In the last 10 years the Ionian Sea, the central and deepest part of the Mediterranean Sea, was subjected to relevant scientific interests from a theoretical and experimental point of view. Among these, there is the discovery of the BiOS (Bimodal Oscillating System), one new mechanism that drives a periodic (almost decadal) redistribution of surface and subsurface waters in the Eastern Mediterranean, with considerable feedbacks in the variability of the deep-water formation both in the southern Adriatic and in the Levantine and Aegean sub-basins (Gačić et al., 2010). In the Ionian Sea, numerous recent observational campaigns have been conducted to investigate the behaviour of deep and abyssal waters, at depths between 2000-4000m that are comparable to the mean global ocean depth (Rubino and Hainbucher, 2007; Bensi et al., 2013). There, advection, diffusion and vertical stability of the water masses can assume an important role on the internal quasi-periodical variability, creating the preconditions for catastrophic events such as the EMT or reversals of the Ionian circulation (Pisacane et al., 2006). Since there are no significant deep heat sources in the world ocean, waters that fill the deep ocean can only return to the sea surface as a result of downward mixing of heat from the sea surface to the bottom and vice versa and this occurs through eddy diffusion. Along our presentation, mainly through the analysis of the deepest CTD casts taken from 2009 to 2011 in the eastern basins and in particular in the Ionian Sea, we will show a significant change in the deep thermohaline structure (including its biogeochemical and hydrological characteristics), giving an indication on the time scale of the renewal of deep

  10. Results on SSH neural network forecasting in the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rixen, Michel; Beckers, Jean-Marie; Alvarez, Alberto; Tintore, Joaquim

    2002-01-01

    Nowadays, satellites are the only monitoring systems that cover almost continuously all possible ocean areas and are now an essential part of operational oceanography. A novel approach based on artificial intelligence (AI) concepts, exploits pasts time series of satellite images to infer near future ocean conditions at the surface by neural networks and genetic algorithms. The size of the AI problem is drastically reduced by splitting the spatio-temporal variability contained in the remote sensing data by using empirical orthogonal function (EOF) decomposition. The problem of forecasting the dynamics of a 2D surface field can thus be reduced by selecting the most relevant empirical modes, and non-linear time series predictors are then applied on the amplitudes only. In the present case study, we use altimetric maps of the Mediterranean Sea, combining TOPEX-POSEIDON and ERS-1/2 data for the period 1992 to 1997. The learning procedure is applied to each mode individually. The final forecast is then reconstructed form the EOFs and the forecasted amplitudes and compared to the real observed field for validation of the method.

  11. The Mediterranean Sea system: a review and an introduction to the special issue

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Tanhua

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available The Mediterranean Sea is a semi-enclosed sea characterized by high salinities, temperatures and densities. The net evaporation exceeds the precipitation, driving an anti-estuarine circulation through the Strait of Gibraltar, contributing to very low nutrient concentrations. The Mediterranean Sea has an active overturning circulation, one shallow cell that communicates directly with the Atlantic Ocean, and two deep overturning cells, one in each of the two main basins. It is surrounded by populated areas and is thus sensitive to anthropogenic forcing. Several dramatic changes in the oceanographic and biogeochemical conditions have been observed during the past several decades, emphasizing the need to better monitor and understand the changing conditions and their drivers. During 2011 three oceanographic cruises were conducted in a coordinated fashion in order to produce baseline data of important physical and biogeochemical parameters that can be compared to historic data and be used as reference for future observational campaigns. In this article we provide information on the Mediterranean Sea oceanographic situation, and present a short review that will serve as background information for the special issue in Ocean Science on "Physical, chemical and biological oceanography of the Mediterranean Sea". An important contribution of this article is the set of figures showing the large-scale distributions of physical and chemical properties along the full length of the Mediterranean Sea.

  12. Re-description of Timarete punctata (Polychaeta: Cirratulidae and its occurrence in the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melih Ertan Çinar

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available Timarete punctata (Grube, 1859 is re-described based on type material. In addition, a lectotype and paralectotype are designated for this species. Specimens of T. punctata collected from the western Atlantic, Indian Ocean and Mediterranean Sea were examined and their morphological characters compared using correlation and regression analysis. A number of characters were found to be size- dependent. The presence of T. punctata in the Levantine Sea (but not in the rest of the Mediterranean suggests that it could be a Lessepsian species. This species might have previously been reported in the Levantine Sea as Cirriformia semicincta (Ehlers, 1905.

  13. Mean sea level and surface circulation variability of the Mediterranean Sea from 2 years of TOPEX/POSEIDON altimetry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larnicol, Gilles; Le Traon, Pierre-Yves; Ayoub, Nadia; de Mey, Pierre

    1995-12-01

    We describe the circulation and mean sea level variations of the Mediterranean Sea from 2 years of TOPEX/POSEIDON altimetric data. It is first shown that the response of the Mediterranean Sea to atmospheric pressure forcing is close to an inverse barometer (except at high frequencies) which means that the adjustment is accompanied by a flow through the Straits of Sicily and Gibraltar. We then use TOPEX/POSEIDON to study the mean sea level variations, representing steric effects and integrated large-scale changes of the mass of the Mediterranean Sea. We observe an annual cycle with a fast drop during winter. Steric effects account for about half of the observed variations. The remaining signal is believed to be driven by evaporation minus precipitation (E - P) forcing and internal hydraulic control in the Straits of Gibraltar. Using suboptimal space-time objective analysis, the classic components of the Mediterranean surface circulation are recovered, despite low signal-to-noise ratio (the rms of sea level variability is less than 10 cm). The variable Mediterranean circulation is seen as a complex combination of mesoscale and large-scale variations. The surface circulation is more complex in the eastern basin than in the western basin. In the east it is composed of subbasin-scale gyres, such as the so-called Mersa-Matruh and Shikmona gyres, which do not have an obvious recurrence period. We also observe an intensification of the large-scale cyclonic winter circulation in the western and in the Ionian basins. Several mesoscale structures, such as the Alboran gyres and the Ierepetra gyre, show a clear seasonal cycle, with a maximum in summer. The good qualitative and quantitative agreement of the results with previous data from the Mediterranean illustrates the improved accurary of TOPEX/POSEIDON over its predecessors.

  14. First evidence of European eels exiting the Mediterranean Sea during their spawning migration

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Amilhat, Elsa; Aarestrup, Kim; Faliex, Elisabeth

    2016-01-01

    The migration route and the spawning site of the European eel Anguilla anguilla are still uncertain. It has been suggested that the Mediterranean eel stock does not contribute to spawning because there is no evidence of eels leaving the Mediterranean Sea. To test this hypothesis, we equipped eight...... female silver eels from the south of France with pop-up satellite tags during escapement from coastal waters. Once in deeper water, the eels quickly established diel vertical migration (DVM) between the upper and lower mesopelagic zone. Five tagged eels were taken by predators within the Mediterranean...... to show that eels from Mediterranean can cross the Strait of Gibraltar and continue their migration into the Atlantic Ocean. This finding suggests that Mediterranean countries, as for other EU states, have an important role to play in contributing to conservation efforts for the recovery of the European...

  15. Failure Mechanisms of Ana Slide, Eivissa Channel, Western Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lafuerza, S.; Sultan, N.; Canals, M.; Lastras, G.; Cattaneo, A.; Frigola, J.; Costa, S.; Berndt, C.

    2011-12-01

    Fluid seepage has been considered as the most plausible explanation to account for slope instabilities in the Eivissa Channel in between the Iberian Peninsula and the Balearic Islands, Western Mediterranean Sea. In situ geotechnical tests and sediment cores obtained in the Ana Slide area, on the Balearic slope of the Eivissa Channel, suggest that the development of the basal failure surface (BFS) was favoured by contrasting hydro-mechanical properties between a coarse unit (U7) charged with methane and a fine-grained unit above (U6). The presence of past methane seepage has been inferred from high magnetic susceptibility values found in sediments from the headwall area and is supported by seismic reflection data. Geotechnical data from piezocone tests, laboratory analyses and numerical calculations indicate degradation of the undrained shear strength generated by methane exsolution and expansion as the only plausible mechanism to explain the origin of Ana Slide. The probability of failure for different critical failure surfaces has been investigated by using the SAMU-3D slope stability model taking into account the role of free gas in the development of the landslide. According to SAMU-3D, the most probable failure surface is related to a minimum degradation of the undrained shear strength of units U6 and U7 of 95% and a basal failure surface developed at the base of U6, which acted as a weak layer. Wheeler's theory suggests that 9% of free-gas saturation in U7 is enough to reduce the undrained shear strength by 95%. However, using the theory of the undrained equilibrium behaviour of gassy sediments we conclude that the excess fluid pressure generated by gas exsolution and expansion is not relevant to bring the slope to fail.

  16. Plankton in the open Mediterranean Sea: a review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I. Siokou-Frangou

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available We present an overview of the plankton studies conducted during the last 25 years in the epipelagic offshore waters of the Mediterranean Sea. This quasi-enclosed sea is characterized by a rich and complex physical dynamics with distinctive traits, especially in regard to the thermohaline circulation. Recent investigations have basically confirmed the long-recognised oligotrophic nature of this sea, which increases along both the west-east and the north-south directions. Nutrient availability is low, especially for phosphorous (N:P up to 60, though this limitation may be buffered by inputs from highly populated coasts and from the atmosphere. Phytoplankton biomass, as chl a, generally displays low values (less than 0.2 μg chl a l−1 over large areas, with a modest late winter increase. A large bloom (up to 3 μg l−1 is observed throughout the late winter and spring exclusively in the NW area. Relatively high biomass values are recorded in fronts and cyclonic gyres. A deep chlorophyll maximum is a permanent feature for the whole basin, except during the late winter mixing. It is found at increasingly greater depths ranging from 30 m in the Alboran Sea to 120 m in the easternmost Levantine basin. Primary production reveals a west-east decreasing trend and ranges between 59 and 150 g C m−2 y−1 (in situ measurements. Overall, the basin is largely dominated by small autotrophs, microheterotrophs and egg-carrying copepod species. The microorganisms (phytoplankton, viruses, bacteria, flagellates and ciliates and zooplankton components reveal a considerable diversity and variability over spatial and temporal scales, although the latter is poorly studied. Examples are the wide diversity of dinoflagellates and coccolithophores, the multifarious role of diatoms or picoeukaryotes, and the distinct seasonal or spatial patterns of the species-rich copepod genera or families which dominate the

  17. Applicability of single-camera photogrammetry to determine body dimensions of pinnipeds: Galapagos sea lions as an example.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meise, Kristine; Mueller, Birte; Zein, Beate; Trillmich, Fritz

    2014-01-01

    Morphological features correlate with many life history traits and are therefore of high interest to behavioral and evolutionary biologists. Photogrammetry provides a useful tool to collect morphological data from species for which measurements are otherwise difficult to obtain. This method reduces disturbance and avoids capture stress. Using the Galapagos sea lion (Zalophus wollebaeki) as a model system, we tested the applicability of single-camera photogrammetry in combination with laser distance measurement to estimate morphological traits which may vary with an animal's body position. We assessed whether linear morphological traits estimated by photogrammetry can be used to estimate body length and mass. We show that accurate estimates of body length (males: ±2.0%, females: ±2.6%) and reliable estimates of body mass are possible (males: ±6.8%, females: 14.5%). Furthermore, we developed correction factors that allow the use of animal photos that diverge somewhat from a flat-out position. The product of estimated body length and girth produced sufficiently reliable estimates of mass to categorize individuals into 10 kg-classes of body mass. Data of individuals repeatedly photographed within one season suggested relatively low measurement errors (body length: 2.9%, body mass: 8.1%). In order to develop accurate sex- and age-specific correction factors, a sufficient number of individuals from both sexes and from all desired age classes have to be captured for baseline measurements. Given proper validation, this method provides an excellent opportunity to collect morphological data for large numbers of individuals with minimal disturbance.

  18. Applicability of single-camera photogrammetry to determine body dimensions of pinnipeds: Galapagos sea lions as an example.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristine Meise

    Full Text Available Morphological features correlate with many life history traits and are therefore of high interest to behavioral and evolutionary biologists. Photogrammetry provides a useful tool to collect morphological data from species for which measurements are otherwise difficult to obtain. This method reduces disturbance and avoids capture stress. Using the Galapagos sea lion (Zalophus wollebaeki as a model system, we tested the applicability of single-camera photogrammetry in combination with laser distance measurement to estimate morphological traits which may vary with an animal's body position. We assessed whether linear morphological traits estimated by photogrammetry can be used to estimate body length and mass. We show that accurate estimates of body length (males: ±2.0%, females: ±2.6% and reliable estimates of body mass are possible (males: ±6.8%, females: 14.5%. Furthermore, we developed correction factors that allow the use of animal photos that diverge somewhat from a flat-out position. The product of estimated body length and girth produced sufficiently reliable estimates of mass to categorize individuals into 10 kg-classes of body mass. Data of individuals repeatedly photographed within one season suggested relatively low measurement errors (body length: 2.9%, body mass: 8.1%. In order to develop accurate sex- and age-specific correction factors, a sufficient number of individuals from both sexes and from all desired age classes have to be captured for baseline measurements. Given proper validation, this method provides an excellent opportunity to collect morphological data for large numbers of individuals with minimal disturbance.

  19. Oxidative stress and redistribution of glutamine synthetase in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) with domoic acid toxicosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madl, J E; Duncan, C G; Stanhill, J E; Tai, P-Y; Spraker, T R; Gulland, F M

    2014-01-01

    The aim of this study was to test the hypothesis that oxidative stress and glutamine synthetase (GS) redistribution occur in domoic acid (DA) toxicosis in California sea lions (CSLs, Zalophus californianus). Sections of archived hippocampi from seven control and 13 CSLs diagnosed with DA toxicosis were labelled immunohistochemically for GS and for two markers of oxidative stress, malondialdehyde (MDA) and 3-nitrotyrosine (NT). The distribution and intensity of labelling were compared with the pathological changes seen in haematoxylin and eosin-stained sections. Increased expression of MDA and NT occurred in neurons of the hippocampal formation of CSLs with lesions consistent with DA toxicosis. The degree of oxidative stress was not affected significantly by the chronicity or severity of hippocampal damage. In six out of seven CSLs with chronic effects of DA toxicosis, in addition to the normal glial distribution of GS, GS expression was very strong in some neurons of the subiculum. However, neuronal GS labelling was also seen in one control CSL, an effect that may have been due to previous exposure to DA. GS expression in neurons was associated with decreases in GS labelling in neighbouring glial cell processes. DA toxicosis therefore induces increased expression of markers of oxidative stress in neurons consistent with oxidative stress contributing to the initial DA insult and also the epilepsy that often develops in chronic DA toxicosis. GS redistribution occurred primarily in chronic DA toxicosis, perhaps leading to alterations of the glutamine-glutamate-GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) cycle and contributing to the excitotoxicity and seizures often seen in DA toxicosis.

  20. Marine caves of the Mediterranean Sea: a sponge biodiversity reservoir within a biodiversity hotspot.

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    Vasilis Gerovasileiou

    Full Text Available Marine caves are widely acknowledged for their unique biodiversity and constitute a typical feature of the Mediterranean coastline. Herein an attempt was made to evaluate the ecological significance of this particular ecosystem in the Mediterranean Sea, which is considered a biodiversity hotspot. This was accomplished by using Porifera, which dominate the rocky sublittoral substrata, as a reference group in a meta-analytical approach, combining primary research data from the Aegean Sea (eastern Mediterranean with data derived from the literature. In total 311 species from all poriferan classes were recorded, representing 45.7% of the Mediterranean Porifera. Demospongiae and Homoscleromorpha are highly represented in marine caves at the family (88%, generic (70%, and species level (47.5%, the latter being the most favored group along with Dictyoceratida and Lithistida. Several rare and cave-exclusive species were reported from only one or few caves, indicating the fragmentation and peculiarity of this unique ecosystem. Species richness and phylogenetic diversity varied among Mediterranean areas; the former was positively correlated with research effort, being higher in the northern Mediterranean, while the latter was generally higher in caves than in the overall sponge assemblages of each area. Resemblance analysis among areas revealed that cavernicolous sponge assemblages followed a pattern quite similar to that of the overall Mediterranean assemblages. The same pattern was exhibited by the zoogeographic affinities of cave sponges: species with Atlanto-Mediterranean distribution and Mediterranean endemics prevailed (more than 40% each, 70% of them having warm-water affinities, since most caves were studied in shallow waters. According to our findings, Mediterranean marine caves appear to be important sponge biodiversity reservoirs of high representativeness and great scientific interest, deserving further detailed study and protection.

  1. Climatic features of the Mediterranean Sea detected by the analysis of the longwave radiative bulk formulae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. E. Schiano

    Full Text Available Some important climatic features of the Mediterranean Sea stand out from an analysis of the systematic discrepancies between direct measurements of longwave radiation budget and predictions obtained by the most widely used bulk formulae. In particular, under clear-sky conditions the results show that the surface values of both air temperature and humidity over the Mediterranean Sea are larger than those expected over an open ocean with the same amount of net longwave radiation. Furthermore, the twofold climatic regime of the Mediterranean region strongly affects the downwelling clear-sky radiation. This study suggests that a single bulk formula with constant numerical coefficients is unable to reproduce the fluxes at the surface for all the seasons.

    Key words: Meteorology and Atmospheric dynamics (radiative processes – Oceanography: general (marginal and semienclosed seas; marine meteorology

  2. New Fisheries-related data from the Mediterranean Sea (April 2014

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. STERGIOU

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available As part of its policy, Mediterranean Marine Science started from 2014 to publish a new series of collective article with fisheries-related data from the Mediterranean Sea. In this first collective article we present length frequencies and weight-length relationships for the northern brown shrimp Farfantepenaeus aztecus in the eastern Mediterranean, length-weight relationships for 10 fish species in the North Aegean Sea, the feeding habits for 11 sparid fishes in the North Aegean Sea, a review of the existing literature on the feeding and reproduction of common carp Cyprinus carpio in Anatolia (Turkey and mouth dimensions and the relationships between mouth area and length for seven freshwater fishes from Lake Volvi (Northern Greece.

  3. An oceanic box model of the Miocene Mediterranean Sea with emphasis on the effects of closure of the eastern gateway

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Karami, M.P.; Meijer, P.Th.; Dijkstra, H.A.; Wortel, M.J.R.

    2009-01-01

    The early Miocene Mediterranean Sea had two gateways toward the open ocean: the Indian Ocean in the east and the Atlantic Ocean in the west. Closure of the eastern connection during the middle Miocene had important effects on the water properties and circulation of the Mediterranean Sea. To gain ins

  4. Resolving key drivers of variability through an important circulation choke point in the western Mediterranean Sea; using gliders, models & satellite remote sensing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heslop, Emma; Aguiar, Eva; Mourre, Baptiste; Juza, Mélanie; Escudier, Romain; Tintoré, Joaquín

    2017-04-01

    The Ibiza Channel plays an important role in the circulation of the Western Mediterranean Sea, it governs the north/south exchange of different water masses that are known to affect regional ecosystems and is influenced by variability in the different drivers that affect sub-basins to the north (N) and south (S). A complex system. In this study we use a multi-platform approach to resolve the key drivers of this variability, and gain insight into the inter-connection between the N and S of the Western Mediterranean Sea through this choke point. The 6-year glider time series from the quasi-continuous glider endurance line monitoring of the Ibiza Channel, undertaken by SOCIB (Balearic Coastal Ocean observing and Forecasting System), is used as the base from which to identify key sub-seasonal to inter-annual patterns and shifts in water mass properties and transport volumes. The glider data indicates the following key components in the variability of the N/S flow of different water mass through the channel; regional winter mode water production, change in intermediate water mass properties, northward flows of a fresher water mass and the basin-scale circulation. To resolve the drivers of these components of variability, the strength of combining datasets from different sources, glider, modeling, altimetry and moorings, is harnessed. To the north atmospheric forcing in the Gulf of Lions is a dominant driver, while to the south the mesoscale circulation patterns of the Atlantic Jet and Alboran gyres dominate the variability but do not appear to influence the fresher inflows. Evidence of a connection between the northern and southern sub-basins is however indicated. The study highlights importance of sub-seasonal variability and the scale of rapid change possible in the Mediterranean, as well as the benefits of leveraging high resolution glider datasets within a multi-platform and modelling study.

  5. {sup 137}Cs baseline levels in the Mediterranean and Black Sea: A cross-basin survey of the CIESM Mediterranean Mussel Watch programme

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Thebault, Herve [IRSN, LERCM, Centre Ifremer, BP 330, F-83507 La Seyne sur Mer (France); Rodriguez y Baena, Alessia M. [International Commission for the Scientific Exploration of the Mediterranean Sea (CIESM), 16 Blvd de Suisse, MC-98000 Principality of Monaco (Monaco); Andral, Bruno [Ifremer, BP 330, F-83507 La Seyne sur Mer (France); Barisic, Delko [Center for Marine and Environmental Research, Lab. for Trace Physical Chemistry, Ruder Boskovic Inst., P.O. Box 1016, Bijenicka 54, 10002 Zagreb (Croatia); Albaladejo, Jose Benedicto [Inst. Espanol de Oceanografi' a (IEO), Centro Oceanografico de Murcia - Calle Varadero No. 1, 30740 San Pedro del Pinatar (Spain); Bologa, Alexandru S. [National Institute for Marine Research and Development ' Grigore Antipa' , RO-900581, Constantza (Romania); Boudjenoun, Redouane [Commissariat a l' Energie Atomique (COMENA), Centre de Radioprotection Recherche Nucleaire d' Algeret de Surete, Lab. d' Etudes d' Impact Radiologique, 2 Blvd F. Fanon - BP 399 Alger-Gare, 16000 Alger (Algeria); Delfanti, Roberta [Ente per le Nuove Tecnologie, l' Energia, e l' Ambiente (ENEA), Marine Environment Research Centre, La Spezia (Italy); Egorov, Victor N. [Inst. of Biology of the Southern Seas (IBSS), National Academy of Sciences of the Ukraine, 2 Porspekt Nakhimova, 99 011 Sevastopol, Crimea (Ukraine); El Khoukhi, Tahar [Centre d' Etudes Nucleaires de la Maamora (CNESTEN), BP 1382 RP Rabat 10001 (Morocco); Florou, Heleni [National Centre for Scientific Research ' Demokritos' , Aghia Paraskevi 153 10, P.O. Box 60228, Athens (Greece); Kniewald, Goran [Center for Marine and Environmental Research, Lab. for Trace Physical Chemistry, Ruder Boskovic Inst., P.O. Box 1016, Bijenicka 54, 10002 Zagreb (Croatia); Noureddine, Abdelkader [Commissariat a l' Energie Atomique (COMENA), Centre de Radioprotection Recherche Nucleaire d' Algeret de Surete, Lab. d' Etudes d' Impact Radiologique, 2 Blvd F. Fanon - BP 399 Alger-Gare, 16000 Alger (Algeria)] (and others)

    2008-07-01

    The common mussel Mytilus galloprovincialis was selected as unique biomonitor species to implement a regional monitoring programme, the CIESM Mediterranean Mussel Watch (MMW), in the Mediterranean and Black Seas. As of today, and upon standardization of the methodological approach, the MMW Network has been able to quantify {sup 137}Cs levels in mussels from 60 coastal stations and to produce the first distribution map of this artificial radionuclide at the scale of the entire Mediterranean and Black Seas. While measured {sup 137}Cs levels were found to be very low (usually <1 Bq kg{sup -1} wet wt) {sup 137}Cs activity concentrations in the Black Sea and North Aegean Sea were up to two orders of magnitude higher than those in the western Mediterranean Basin. Such effects, far from representing a threat to human populations or the environment, reflect a persistent signature of the Chernobyl fallout in this area.

  6. Simulated anthropogenic CO2 storage and acidification of the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Palmiéri

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Constraints on the Mediterranean Sea's storage of anthropogenic CO2 are limited, coming only from data-based approaches that disagree by more than a factor of two. Here we simulate this marginal sea's anthropogenic carbon storage by applying a perturbation approach in a high-resolution regional model. Our model simulates that, between 1800 and 2001, basin-wide CO2 storage by the Mediterranean Sea has increased by 1.0 Pg C, a lower limit based on the model's weak deep-water ventilation, as revealed by evaluation with CFC-12. Furthermore, by testing a data-based approach (transit time distribution in our model, comparing simulated anthropogenic CO2 to values computed from simulated CFC-12 and physical variables, we conclude that the associated basin-wide storage of 1.7 Pg, published previously, must be an upper bound. Out of the total simulated storage of 1.0 Pg C, 75% comes from the air–sea flux into the Mediterranean Sea and 25% comes from net transport from the Atlantic across the Strait of Gibraltar. Sensitivity tests indicate that the Mediterranean Sea's higher total alkalinity, relative to the global-ocean mean, enhances the Mediterranean's total inventory of anthropogenic carbon by 10%. Yet the corresponding average anthropogenic change in surface pH does not differ significantly from the global-ocean average, despite higher total alkalinity. In Mediterranean deep waters, the pH change is estimated to be between −0.005 and −0.06 pH units.

  7. Consumers of sea urchins, Paracentrotus lividus and Arbacia lixula, in shallow Mediterranean rocky reefs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guidetti, Paolo

    2004-04-01

    Underwater observations on fish and asteroid consumers (i.e. predators and scavengers) of sea urchins, Paracentrotus lividus and Arbacia lixula, were carried out at several locations in shallow Mediterranean rocky reefs. Observations conducted in the marine reserve of Torre Guaceto (Adriatic Sea) revealed that sparid fishes, Diplodus sargus and D. vulgaris, are the main fish predators of small (sargus were able to prey upon small and medium, and occasionally large (>4 cm) sea urchins, whereas medium and small Diplodus preyed mainly upon small sea urchins. The number of sea urchins preyed upon by fishes was negatively related to sea urchin size for both species. P. lividus appeared to be subject to higher predation levels than A. lixula. The scavenger guild comprised 11 fish species, with D. sargus, D. vulgaris, Coris julis and Chromis chromis accounting for about 80% of scavenger fishes. Observations performed at several locations in the Mediterranean on the predatory asteroid Marthasterias glacialis revealed that only 3% of the detected individuals were preying upon sea urchins. Due to the importance of sea urchins for assemblage structure and functioning of Mediterranean rocky reef ecosystems, these results may have also important implications for management of fishing activities.

  8. Dolphin morbillivirus infection in different parts of the Mediterranean Sea

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    M.F. van Bressem; I.K.G. Visser (Ilona); R.L. de Swart (Rik); C. Örvell; L. Stanzani; E. Androukaki (Eugenia); K. Siakavara; A.D.M.E. Osterhaus (Albert)

    1993-01-01

    textabstractMorbillivirus were isolated from Mediterranean striped dolphins (Stenella coeruleoalba) dying along the coasts of Italy and Greece in 1991. They were antigenically identical to the morbilliviruses isolated from striped dolphins in Spain in 1990.

  9. The Impact of a Warmer Mediterranean Sea on Central European Summer Flooding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volosciuk, Claudia; Semenov, Vladimir; Maraun, Douglas; Latif, Mojib; Tilinina, Natalia

    2014-05-01

    Central European climate is influenced by the Mediterranean Sea, which experienced a strong increase in sea surface temperature (SST) during the last four decades. One example of extreme weather events are cyclones following the "Vb" pathway. These cyclones are generated over the Mediterranean Sea and travel northeastwards around the Alps and then hit countries like Poland and Germany. The cyclones carry large amounts of moisture and cause extreme precipitation, and subsequently flooding, particularly in summer. These floods, such as the Elbe flood in 2002, have devastating societal impacts and also influence ecosystems. To analyse the potential impact of increased Mediterranean SST on extreme precipitation in Europe, a series of simulations with the atmospheric general circulation model (AGCM) ECHAM5 has been carried out. ECHAM5 was run at high horizontal resolution (T159) and integrated for 40 years in each experiment. The control run is forced by SST and sea ice concentration (SIC) climatology derived from 1970-1999. A warmer climate is simulated by using global climatological SST and SIC from 2000-2012. To disentangle the impact of the Mediterranean Sea, an additional simulation was performed with the same global SST and SIC as in the control run, but with the warmer 2000-2012 SST climatology restricted to the Mediterranean and Black Seas. 20-season return levels were derived as a measure of extreme precipitation for daily as well as five day precipitation in JJA (June, July, August). These return levels are estimated as quantiles of a stationary generalised extreme value (GEV) distribution. Although the increase in the number of Vb cyclones is only modest, precipitation return levels in JJA show an increase along the Vb cyclone track, for daily (up to approximately 63 %) as well as for five day (up to approximately 76 %) precipitation extremes. This increase can be attributed to the warmer Mediterranean Sea, as it is observed in both the globally warmer and

  10. Mediterranean Sea response to climate change in an ensemble of twenty first century scenarios

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adloff, Fanny; Somot, Samuel; Sevault, Florence; Jordà, Gabriel; Aznar, Roland; Déqué, Michel; Herrmann, Marine; Marcos, Marta; Dubois, Clotilde; Padorno, Elena; Alvarez-Fanjul, Enrique; Gomis, Damià

    2015-11-01

    The Mediterranean climate is expected to become warmer and drier during the twenty-first century. Mediterranean Sea response to climate change could be modulated by the choice of the socio-economic scenario as well as the choice of the boundary conditions mainly the Atlantic hydrography, the river runoff and the atmospheric fluxes. To assess and quantify the sensitivity of the Mediterranean Sea to the twenty-first century climate change, a set of numerical experiments was carried out with the regional ocean model NEMOMED8 set up for the Mediterranean Sea. The model is forced by air-sea fluxes derived from the regional climate model ARPEGE-Climate at a 50-km horizontal resolution. Historical simulations representing the climate of the period 1961-2000 were run to obtain a reference state. From this baseline, various sensitivity experiments were performed for the period 2001-2099, following different socio-economic scenarios based on the Special Report on Emissions Scenarios. For the A2 scenario, the main three boundary forcings (river runoff, near-Atlantic water hydrography and air-sea fluxes) were changed one by one to better identify the role of each forcing in the way the ocean responds to climate change. In two additional simulations (A1B, B1), the scenario is changed, allowing to quantify the socio-economic uncertainty. Our 6-member scenario simulations display a warming and saltening of the Mediterranean. For the 2070-2099 period compared to 1961-1990, the sea surface temperature anomalies range from +1.73 to +2.97 °C and the SSS anomalies spread from +0.48 to +0.89. In most of the cases, we found that the future Mediterranean thermohaline circulation (MTHC) tends to reach a situation similar to the eastern Mediterranean Transient. However, this response is varying depending on the chosen boundary conditions and socio-economic scenarios. Our numerical experiments suggest that the choice of the near-Atlantic surface water evolution, which is very uncertain in

  11. Propagation regimes and populations of internal waves in the Mediterranean Sea basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurkina, Oxana; Rouvinskaya, Ekaterina; Talipova, Tatiana; Soomere, Tarmo

    2017-02-01

    The geographical and seasonal distributions of kinematic and nonlinear parameters of long internal waves are derived from the Generalized Digital Environmental Model (GDEM) climatology for the Mediterranean Sea region, including the Black Sea. The considered parameters are phase speed of long internal waves and the coefficients at the dispersion, quadratic and cubic terms of the weakly-nonlinear Korteweg-de Vries-type models (in particular, the Gardner model). These parameters govern the possible polarities and shapes of solitary internal waves, their limiting amplitudes and propagation speeds. The key outcome is an express estimate of the expected parameters of internal waves for different regions of the Mediterranean basin.

  12. Speciation of mercury in surface and deep-sea waters in the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horvat, Milena; Kotnik, Jože; Logar, Martina; Fajon, Vesna; Zvonarić, Tomislav; Pirrone, Nicola

    A summary of data recently obtained for mercury analysis and speciation (reactive Hg, total Hg and monomethylmercury (MMHg)) in filtered and non-filtered seawater samples, dissolved gaseous mercury (DGM) and dimethylmercury (DMHg) in open and coastal waters of the Mediterranean Sea is presented. The majority of the results were obtained during an oceanographic cruise aboard the research vessel Urania from 14 July to 9 August, 2000, as part of the MED-OCEANOR Project funded by the National Research Council of Italy. The results are compared with those obtained in contaminated coastal environments of the Adriatic (The Gulf of Trieste and Kaštela Bay) and non-contaminated coastal waters of the eastern Adriatic coast obtained in 1998. Total mercury concentrations in surface ocean waters are relatively low with an average of 0.81 pM (0.49-1.91 pM). Reactive Hg represents a substantial part with an average of 57% of total Hg (15-97%). Most mercury in open ocean waters was present in the dissolved form (32-95%, av. 70%), which is mainly due to the low abundance of particulate matter, a phenomenon well known for the Mediterranean open ocean waters. On average the percentage of Hg as MMHg was about 20%, of which about 66% was present in the dissolved form. The percentage of DGM in the surface ocean waters represents about 9% of total Hg (2.5-24.5%) and may originate from photochemical, biologically mediated mechanisms or diffusion from deeper layer either due to biological and/or to tectonic activity which is typical of the Mediterranean region. The presence of DMHg was confirmed only in waters below 20 m (up to 12 fM), while in surface waters DMHg was below the limit of detection (<0.1 fM). Surface concentrations of Hg in the eastern and western parts are comparable, except for DGM which shows significantly higher concentrations in the eastern part (mean value: 0.22 pM) as compared to the western Mediterranean (mean value: 0.09 pM). The distribution of Hg species with

  13. First record of Kemp’s ridley sea turtle, Lepidochelys kempii (Garman, 1880 (Cheloniidae, from the Italian waters (Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gianni Insacco

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available In this work the authors describe the first case of Lepidochelys kempii stranding (Garman, 1880 happened in Italian waters (Sicily, Messina and considered to be the fifth in the entire Mediterranean Sea. A young individual was recovered with a longline hook in its oesophageal.

  14. Mitochondrial DNA Reveals Genetic Structuring of Pinna nobilis across the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanna, Daria; Cossu, Piero; Dedola, Gian Luca; Scarpa, Fabio; Maltagliati, Ferruccio; Castelli, Alberto; Franzoi, Piero; Lai, Tiziana; Cristo, Benedetto; Curini-Galletti, Marco; Francalacci, Paolo; Casu, Marco

    2013-01-01

    Pinna nobilis is the largest endemic Mediterranean marine bivalve. During past centuries, various human activities have promoted the regression of its populations. As a consequence of stringent standards of protection, demographic expansions are currently reported in many sites. The aim of this study was to provide the first large broad-scale insight into the genetic variability of P. nobilis in the area that encompasses the western Mediterranean, Ionian Sea, and Adriatic Sea marine ecoregions. To accomplish this objective twenty-five populations from this area were surveyed using two mitochondrial DNA markers (COI and 16S). Our dataset was then merged with those obtained in other studies for the Aegean and Tunisian populations (eastern Mediterranean), and statistical analyses (Bayesian model-based clustering, median-joining network, AMOVA, mismatch distribution, Tajima’s and Fu’s neutrality tests and Bayesian skyline plots) were performed. The results revealed genetic divergence among three distinguishable areas: (1) western Mediterranean and Ionian Sea; (2) Adriatic Sea; and (3) Aegean Sea and Tunisian coastal areas. From a conservational point of view, populations from the three genetically divergent groups found may be considered as different management units. PMID:23840684

  15. Importance of the variability of hydrographic preconditioning for deep convection in the Gulf of Lion, NW Mediterranean

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Grignon

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available We study the variability of hydrographic preconditioning defined as the heat and salt contents in the Ligurian Sea before convection. The stratification is found to reach a maximum in the intermediate layer in December, whose causes and consequences for the interannual variability of convection are investigated. Further study of the interannual variability and correlation tests between the properties of the deep water formed and the winter surface fluxes support the description of convection as a process that transfers the heat and salt contents from the top and intermediate layers to the deep layer. A proxy for the rate of transfer is given by the final convective mixed layer depth, that is shown to depend equally on the surface fluxes and on the preconditioning. In particular, it was found that deep convection in winter 2004–2005 would have happened even with normal winter conditions, due to low pre-winter stratification.

  16. Global warming and mass mortalities of benthic invertebrates in the Mediterranean Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivetti, Irene; Fraschetti, Simonetta; Lionello, Piero; Zambianchi, Enrico; Boero, Ferdinando

    2014-01-01

    Satellite data show a steady increase, in the last decades, of the surface temperature (upper few millimetres of the water surface) of the Mediterranean Sea. Reports of mass mortalities of benthic marine invertebrates increased in the same period. Some local studies interpreted the two phenomena in a cause-effect fashion. However, a basin-wide picture of temperature changes combined with a systematic assessment on invertebrate mass mortalities was still lacking. Both the thermal structure of the water column in the Mediterranean Sea over the period 1945-2011 and all documented invertebrate mass mortality events in the basin are analysed to ascertain if: 1- documented mass mortalities occurred under conditions of positive temperature trends at basin scale, and 2- atypical thermal conditions were registered at the smaller spatial and temporal scale of mass mortality events. The thermal structure of the shallow water column over the last 67 years was reconstructed using data from three public sources: MEDAR-MEDATLAS, World Ocean Database, MFS-VOS programme. A review of the mass mortality events of benthic invertebrates at Mediterranean scale was also carried out. The analysis of in situ temperature profiles shows that the Mediterranean Sea changed in a non-homogeneous fashion. The frequency of mass mortalities is increasing. The areas subjected to these events correspond to positive thermal anomalies. Statistically significant temperature trends in the upper layers of the Mediterranean Sea show an increase of up to 0.07°C/yr for a large fraction of the basin. Mass mortalities are consistent with both the temperature increase at basin scale and the thermal changes at local scale, up to 5.2°C. Our research supports the existence of a causal link between positive thermal anomalies and observed invertebrate mass mortalities in the Mediterranean Sea, invoking focused mitigation initiatives in sensitive areas.

  17. Global warming and mass mortalities of benthic invertebrates in the Mediterranean Sea.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Irene Rivetti

    Full Text Available Satellite data show a steady increase, in the last decades, of the surface temperature (upper few millimetres of the water surface of the Mediterranean Sea. Reports of mass mortalities of benthic marine invertebrates increased in the same period. Some local studies interpreted the two phenomena in a cause-effect fashion. However, a basin-wide picture of temperature changes combined with a systematic assessment on invertebrate mass mortalities was still lacking. Both the thermal structure of the water column in the Mediterranean Sea over the period 1945-2011 and all documented invertebrate mass mortality events in the basin are analysed to ascertain if: 1- documented mass mortalities occurred under conditions of positive temperature trends at basin scale, and 2- atypical thermal conditions were registered at the smaller spatial and temporal scale of mass mortality events. The thermal structure of the shallow water column over the last 67 years was reconstructed using data from three public sources: MEDAR-MEDATLAS, World Ocean Database, MFS-VOS programme. A review of the mass mortality events of benthic invertebrates at Mediterranean scale was also carried out. The analysis of in situ temperature profiles shows that the Mediterranean Sea changed in a non-homogeneous fashion. The frequency of mass mortalities is increasing. The areas subjected to these events correspond to positive thermal anomalies. Statistically significant temperature trends in the upper layers of the Mediterranean Sea show an increase of up to 0.07°C/yr for a large fraction of the basin. Mass mortalities are consistent with both the temperature increase at basin scale and the thermal changes at local scale, up to 5.2°C. Our research supports the existence of a causal link between positive thermal anomalies and observed invertebrate mass mortalities in the Mediterranean Sea, invoking focused mitigation initiatives in sensitive areas.

  18. Characterizing, modelling and understanding the climate variability of the deep water formation in the North-Western Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Somot, Samuel; Houpert, Loic; Sevault, Florence; Testor, Pierre; Bosse, Anthony; Taupier-Letage, Isabelle; Bouin, Marie-Noelle; Waldman, Robin; Cassou, Christophe; Sanchez-Gomez, Emilia; Durrieu de Madron, Xavier; Adloff, Fanny; Nabat, Pierre; Herrmann, Marine

    2016-08-01

    Observing, modelling and understanding the climate-scale variability of the deep water formation (DWF) in the North-Western Mediterranean Sea remains today very challenging. In this study, we first characterize the interannual variability of this phenomenon by a thorough reanalysis of observations in order to establish reference time series. These quantitative indicators include 31 observed years for the yearly maximum mixed layer depth over the period 1980-2013 and a detailed multi-indicator description of the period 2007-2013. Then a 1980-2013 hindcast simulation is performed with a fully-coupled regional climate system model including the high-resolution representation of the regional atmosphere, ocean, land-surface and rivers. The simulation reproduces quantitatively well the mean behaviour and the large interannual variability of the DWF phenomenon. The model shows convection deeper than 1000 m in 2/3 of the modelled winters, a mean DWF rate equal to 0.35 Sv with maximum values of 1.7 (resp. 1.6) Sv in 2013 (resp. 2005). Using the model results, the winter-integrated buoyancy loss over the Gulf of Lions is identified as the primary driving factor of the DWF interannual variability and explains, alone, around 50 % of its variance. It is itself explained by the occurrence of few stormy days during winter. At daily scale, the Atlantic ridge weather regime is identified as favourable to strong buoyancy losses and therefore DWF, whereas the positive phase of the North Atlantic oscillation is unfavourable. The driving role of the vertical stratification in autumn, a measure of the water column inhibition to mixing, has also been analyzed. Combining both driving factors allows to explain more than 70 % of the interannual variance of the phenomenon and in particular the occurrence of the five strongest convective years of the model (1981, 1999, 2005, 2009, 2013). The model simulates qualitatively well the trends in the deep waters (warming, saltening, increase in the

  19. Saharan dust deposition may affect phytoplankton growth in the Mediterranean sea at ecological time scales.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rachele Gallisai

    Full Text Available The surface waters of the Mediterranean Sea are extremely poor in the nutrients necessary for plankton growth. At the same time, the Mediterranean Sea borders with the largest and most active desert areas in the world and the atmosphere over the basin is subject to frequent injections of mineral dust particles. We describe statistical correlations between dust deposition over the Mediterranean Sea and surface chlorophyll concentrations at ecological time scales. Aerosol deposition of Saharan origin may explain 1 to 10% (average 5% of seasonally detrended chlorophyll variability in the low nutrient-low chlorophyll Mediterranean. Most of the statistically significant correlations are positive with main effects in spring over the Eastern and Central Mediterranean, conforming to a view of dust events fueling needed nutrients to the planktonic community. Some areas show negative effects of dust deposition on chlorophyll, coinciding with regions under a large influence of aerosols from European origin. The influence of dust deposition on chlorophyll dynamics may become larger in future scenarios of increased aridity and shallowing of the mixed layer.

  20. Saharan Dust Deposition May Affect Phytoplankton Growth in the Mediterranean Sea at Ecological Time Scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallisai, Rachele; Peters, Francesc; Volpe, Gianluca; Basart, Sara; Baldasano, José Maria

    2014-01-01

    The surface waters of the Mediterranean Sea are extremely poor in the nutrients necessary for plankton growth. At the same time, the Mediterranean Sea borders with the largest and most active desert areas in the world and the atmosphere over the basin is subject to frequent injections of mineral dust particles. We describe statistical correlations between dust deposition over the Mediterranean Sea and surface chlorophyll concentrations at ecological time scales. Aerosol deposition of Saharan origin may explain 1 to 10% (average 5%) of seasonally detrended chlorophyll variability in the low nutrient-low chlorophyll Mediterranean. Most of the statistically significant correlations are positive with main effects in spring over the Eastern and Central Mediterranean, conforming to a view of dust events fueling needed nutrients to the planktonic community. Some areas show negative effects of dust deposition on chlorophyll, coinciding with regions under a large influence of aerosols from European origin. The influence of dust deposition on chlorophyll dynamics may become larger in future scenarios of increased aridity and shallowing of the mixed layer. PMID:25333783

  1. Genetic connectivity between land and sea: the case of the beachflea Orchestia montagui (Crustacea, Amphipoda, Talitridae) in the Mediterranean Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavesi, Laura; Tiedemann, Ralph; De Matthaeis, Elvira; Ketmaier, Valerio

    2013-04-25

    We examined patterns of genetic divergence in 26 Mediterranean populations of the semi-terrestrial beachflea Orchestia montagui using mitochondrial (cytochrome oxidase subunit I), microsatellite (eight loci) and allozymic data. The species typically forms large populations within heaps of dead seagrass leaves stranded on beaches at the waterfront. We adopted a hierarchical geographic sampling to unravel population structure in a species living at the sea-land transition and, hence, likely subjected to dramatically contrasting forces. Mitochondrial DNA showed historical phylogeographic breaks among Adriatic, Ionian and the remaining basins (Tyrrhenian, Western and Eastern Mediterranean Sea) likely caused by the geological and climatic changes of the Pleistocene. Microsatellites (and to a lesser extent allozymes) detected a further subdivision between and within the Western Mediterranean and the Tyrrhenian Sea due to present-day processes. A pattern of isolation by distance was not detected in any of the analyzed data set. We conclude that the population structure of O. montagui is the result of the interplay of two contrasting forces that act on the species population genetic structure. On one hand, the species semi-terrestrial life style would tend to determine the onset of local differences. On the other hand, these differences are partially counter-balanced by passive movements of migrants via rafting on heaps of dead seagrass leaves across sites by sea surface currents. Approximate Bayesian Computations support dispersal at sea as prevalent over terrestrial regionalism.

  2. Population genetic history of Aristeus antennatus (Crustacea: Decapoda in the Western and Central Mediterranean Sea.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annamaria Marra

    Full Text Available Aristeus antennatus is an ecologically and economically important deep-water species in the Mediterranean Sea. In this study we investigated the genetic variability of A. antennatus sampled from 10 sampling stations in the Western and Central Mediterranean. By comparing our new samples with available data from the Western area, we aim to identify potential genetic stocks of A. antennatus and to reconstruct its historical demography in the Mediterranean. We analyzed two regions of mitochondrial DNA in 319 individuals, namely COI and 16S. We found two main results: i the genetic diversity values consistent with previous data within the Mediterranean and the absence of barriers to gene flow within the Mediterranean Sea; ii a constant long-term effective population size in almost all demes but a strong signature of population expansion in the pooled sample about 50,000 years B.P./ago. We propose two explanation for our results. The first is based on the ecology of A. antennatus. We suggest the existence of a complex meta-population structured into two layers: a deeper-dwelling stock, not affected by fishing, which preserves the pattern of historical demography; and genetically homogeneous demes inhabiting the fishing grounds. The larval dispersal, adult migration and continuous movements of individuals from "virgin" deeper grounds not affected by fishing to upper fishing areas support an effective 'rescue effect' contributing to the recovery of the exploited stocks and explain their genetic homogeneity throughout the Mediterranean Sea. The second is based on the reproduction model of this shrimp: the high variance in offspring production calls for a careful interpretation of the data observed under classical population genetics and Kingman's coalescent. In both cases, management policies for A. antennatus will therefore require careful evaluation of the meta-population dynamics of all stocks in the Mediterranean. In the future, it will be

  3. Sea-level change and projected future flooding along the Egyptian Mediterranean coast

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohamed Shaltout

    2015-10-01

    The results indicate that DT can be used to study coastal and deep-water sea-level changes in the study area. The southern Levantine sub-basin sea level has recently risen by an average of 3.1 cm decade−1 and exhibits significant annual sea-level variation of −17 cm to 8 cm. The sea-level variation is significantly affected by several factors: sea-level variation west of the Gibraltar Strait, steric sea level, and sea-surface temperature. The GFDL simulations best describing the recent sea level over the study area, i.e., GFDL-CM3 and GFDL-ESM2M, are used to calculate the two-model ensemble mean (GFDL-2ENM, which indicates that Egypt's Mediterranean coast will experience substantial sea-level rise (SLR this century. The estimated uncertainty over the study area was 4–22 cm by 2100, with the emission assumptions dominating the three sources of uncertainty sources. Comparing the projected SLRs with digital elevation data indicates that Egypt's Mediterranean coast will only be safe from flooding by 2100 if effective adaptation methods are applied.

  4. First occurrence of a Hymenosomatid crab Elamena mathoei (Desmarest, 1823 (Crustacea: Decapoda: Brachyura in the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. ZAOUALI

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Mediterranean fauna is undergoing drastic modifications as a result of anthropogenic activities and global warming. The most important of these is the colonization of the Mediterranean Sea by alien species, many of them entering through the Suez Canal. While many of them are still confined to the Levant Basin, several have extended their distribution westwards to Tunisian waters. The presence of the Indo-west Pacific hymenosomatid crab Elamena mathoei on a rocky shore at Sidi Daoud, Cape Bon Peninsula, Tunisia, is the first Mediterranean record of this species. It is a testimony to the changes in the patterns of invasion in the Mediterranean Sea.

  5. Effect of ocean warming and acidification on a plankton community in the NW Mediterranean Sea

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Maugendre, L.; Gattuso, J.-P.; Louis, J.; de Kluijver, A.; Marro, S.; Soetaert, K.; Gazeau, F.

    2015-01-01

    The effect of ocean warming and acidification was investigated on a natural plankton assemblage from an oligotrophic area, the bay of Villefranche (NW Mediterranean Sea). The assemblage was sampled in March 2012 and exposed to the following four treatments for 12 days: control (~360 µatm, 14°C),

  6. Eight years of wind measurements from scatterometer for wind resource mapping in the Mediterranean Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Furevik, Birgitte R.; Sempreviva, Anna Maria; Cavaleri, Luigi;

    2011-01-01

    Eight years of wind observations from the SeaWinds scatterometer instrument on the National Aeronautics and Space Administration QuikScat satellite and in situ data from 11 locations in the Mediterranean have been considered. The data have been co-located in time and space, and it is shown...

  7. First occurrence of knight rock shrimp, Sicyonia lancifer (Olivier, 1811 (Decapoda: Sicyoniidae in the Mediterranean Sea.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. PATANIA

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The occurrence of the non-native species Sicyonia lancifer  (Olivier, 1811 belonging to Sicyoniidae family is reported for the first time in the Mediterranean Sea. In the following  paper  the distinguishing features of the species are provided.

  8. Comparison of deep-sea sediment microbial communities in the Eastern Mediterranean

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heijs, Sander K.; Laverman, Anniet M.; Forney, Larry J.; Hardoim, Pablo R.; van Elsas, Jan Dirk

    Bacterial and archaeal communities in sediments obtained from three geographically-distant mud volcanoes, a control site and a microbial mat in the Eastern Mediterranean deep-sea were characterized using direct 16S rRNA gene analyses. The data were thus in relation to the chemical characteristics of

  9. Diverse methane concentrations in anoxic brines and underlying sediments, eastern Mediterranean Sea

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Karisiddaiah, S.M.

    Elevated methane (CH sub(4)) concentrations (128-2692x10 sup(3) nM) occur in the hypersaline anoxic brine pools of Bannock and Urania Basins, eastern Mediterranean Sea, compared to low concentrations (17-80x10 sup(3) nM) in the sediments below...

  10. Low water column nitrogen fixation in the Mediterranean Sea: basin-wide experimental evidence.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Agawin, N.S.R.; Tovar-Sanchez, A.; Stal, L.J.; Alvarez, M.; Agustí, S.; Duarte, C.M.

    2011-01-01

    The abundance and nitrogen fixation rates of Trichodesmium sp. integrated down to the deep chlorophyll maximum as well as nitrogen fixation rates in size-fractionated discrete surface water samples were measured across the Mediterranean Sea. The abundance of Trichodesmium sp. was generally low (<50

  11. Low water column nitrogen fixation in the Mediterranean Sea: basin-wide experimental evidence

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Agawin, N.S.R.; Tovar-Sanchez, A.; Stal, L.J.; Alvarez, M.; Agusti, S.; Duarte, C.M.

    2011-01-01

    The abundance and nitrogen fixation rates of Trichodesmium sp. integrated down to the deep chlorophyll maximum as well as nitrogen fixation rates in size-fractionated discrete surface water samples were measured across the Mediterranean Sea. The abundance of Trichodesmium sp. was generally low (20°C

  12. Optimizing Surface Winds using QuikSCAT Measurements in the Mediterranean Sea During 2000-2006

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-02-28

    r.com/ locate / jmarsysOptimizing surface winds using QuikSCAT measurements in the Mediterranean Sea during 2000–2006 A. Birol Kara a,⁎, Alan J...flux algorithms. J. Geophys. Res. 113, C04009. doi:10.1029/2007JC004324. Large, W.G., Danabasoglu, G., Doney, S.C., McWilliams , J.C., 1997

  13. Effect of ocean warming and acidification on a plankton community in the NW Mediterranean Sea

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Maugendre, L.; Gattuso, J.-P.; Louis, J.; de Kluijver, A.; Marro, S.; Soetaert, K.; Gazeau, F.

    2015-01-01

    The effect of ocean warming and acidification was investigated on a natural plankton assemblage from an oligotrophic area, the bay of Villefranche (NW Mediterranean Sea). The assemblage was sampled in March 2012 and exposed to the following four treatments for 12 days: control (~360 µatm, 14°C), ele

  14. Composition and sources of sedimentary organic matter in the deep Eastern Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Pedrosa-Pàmies

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Surface sediments collected from deep slopes and basins (1018–4087 m depth of the oligotrophic Eastern Mediterranean Sea have been analysed for bulk elemental and isotopic composition of organic carbon, total nitrogen and selected lipid biomarkers, jointly with grain size distribution and other geochemical proxies. The distribution and sources of sedimentary organic matter (OM have been subsequently assessed and general environmental variables, such as water depth and currents, have been examined as causative factors of deep-sea sediment characteristics. Lithogenic and biogenic carbonates are the dominant sedimentary fractions, while both bulk and molecular organic tracers reflect a mixed contribution from autochthonous and allochthonous sources for the sedimentary OM, as indicated by relatively degraded marine OM, terrestrial plant waxes and anthropogenic OM including degraded petroleum by-products, respectively. Wide regional variations have been observed amongst the studied proxies, which reflect the multiple factors controlling sedimentation in the deep Eastern Mediterranean Sea. Our findings highlight the role of deep Eastern Mediterranean basins as depocentres of organic-rich fine-grained sediments (mean 5.4 ± 2.4 μm, with OM accumulation and burial due to aggregation mechanisms and hydrodynamic sorting. A multi-proxy approach is hired to investigate the biogeochemical composition of sediment samples, which sheds new light on the sources and transport mechanisms along with the impact of preservation vs. diagenetic processes on the composition of sedimentary OM in the deep basins of the oligotrophic Eastern Mediterranean Sea.

  15. First occurrence of knight rock shrimp, Sicyonia lancifer (Olivier, 1811 (Decapoda: Sicyoniidae in the Mediterranean Sea.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. PATANIA

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The occurrence of the non-native species Sicyonia lancifer  (Olivier, 1811 belonging to Sicyoniidae family is reported for the first time in the Mediterranean Sea. In the following  paper  the distinguishing features of the species are provided. 

  16. Seamount physiography and biology in the north-east Atlantic and Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Morato

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available This work aims at characterising the seamount physiography and biology in the OSPAR Convention limits (north-east Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea. We first inferred potential abundance, location and morphological characteristics of seamounts, and secondly, summarized the existing biological, geological and oceanographic in situ research, identifying examples of well-studied seamounts. Our study showed that the seamount population in the OSPAR area (north-east Atlantic and in the Mediterranean Sea is large with around 557 and 101 seamount-like features, respectively. Similarly, seamounts occupy large areas of about 616 000 km2 in the OSPAR region and of about 89 500 km2 in the Mediterranean Sea. The presence of seamounts in the north-east Atlantic has been known since the late 19th century, but overall knowledge regarding seamount ecology and geology is still relatively poor. Only 37 seamounts in the OSPAR area (3.5% of all seamounts in the region, 22 in the Mediterranean Sea (9.2% of all seamounts in the region and 25 in the north-east Atlantic south of the OSPAR area have in situ information. Seamounts mapped in both areas are in general very heterogeneous, showing diverse geophysical characteristics. These differences will likely affect the biological diversity and production of resident and associated organisms.

  17. A nested Atlantic-Mediterranean Sea general circulation model for operational forecasting

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Oddo

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available A new numerical general circulation ocean model for the Mediterranean Sea has been implemented nested within an Atlantic general circulation model within the framework of the Marine Environment and Security for the European Area project (MERSEA, Desaubies, 2006. A 4-year twin experiment was carried out from January 2004 to December 2007 with two different models to evaluate the impact on the Mediterranean Sea circulation of open lateral boundary conditions in the Atlantic Ocean. One model considers a closed lateral boundary in a large Atlantic box and the other is nested in the same box in a global ocean circulation model. Impact was observed comparing the two simulations with independent observations: ARGO for temperature and salinity profiles and tide gauges and along-track satellite observations for the sea surface height. The improvement in the nested Atlantic-Mediterranean model with respect to the closed one is particularly evident in the salinity characteristics of the Modified Atlantic Water and in the Mediterranean sea level seasonal variability.

  18. Entanglement of Australian sea lions and New Zealand fur seals in lost fishing gear and other marine debris before and after Government and industry attempts to reduce the problem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Page, Brad; McKenzie, Jane; McIntosh, Rebecca; Baylis, Alastair; Morrissey, Adam; Calvert, Norna; Haase, Tami; Berris, Mel; Dowie, Dave; Shaughnessy, Peter D; Goldsworthy, Simon D

    2004-07-01

    In recent years, Australian governments and fishing industry associations have developed guiding principles aimed at reducing the impact of fishing on non-target species and the benthos and increasing community awareness of their efforts. To determine whether they reduced seal entanglement in lost fishing gear and other marine debris, we analysed Australian sea lion and New Zealand fur seal entanglement data collected from Kangaroo Island, South Australia. Contrary to our expectations, we found that entanglement rates did not decrease in recent years. The Australian sea lion entanglement rate (1.3% in 2002) and the New Zealand fur seal entanglement rate (0.9% in 2002) are the third and fourth highest reported for any seal species. Australian sea lions were most frequently entangled in monofilament gillnet that most likely originated from the shark fishery, which operates in the region where sea lions forage--south and east of Kangaroo Island. In contrast, New Zealand fur seals were most commonly entangled in loops of packing tape and trawl net fragments suspected to be from regional rock lobster and trawl fisheries. Based on recent entanglement studies, we estimate that 1478 seals die from entanglement each year in Australia. We discuss remedies such as education programs and government incentives that may reduce entanglements.

  19. Proliferation and demise of deep-sea corals in the Mediterranean during the Younger Dryas

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McCulloch, Malcolm [ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, School of Earth and Environment, The University of Western Australian, Crawley, 6009, Western Australia (Australia); Research School of Earth Sciences, Australian National University, Canberra, 0200 (Australia); Taviani, Marco; Lopez Correa, Matthias; Remia, Alessandro [ISMAR-CNR, via Gobetti 101, I-40129 Bologna (Italy); Montagna, Paolo [LSCE, Av. de la Terrasse, 91198 Gif-sur-Yvette, France, ISMAR-CNR, via Gobetti 101, I-40129 Bologna (Italy); Mortimer, Graham [Research School of Earth Sciences, Australian National University, Canberra, 0200 (Australia)

    2010-07-01

    Uranium-series and radiocarbon ages are reported for deep-sea corals Madrepora oculata, Desmophyllum dianthus, Lophelia pertusa and Caryophyllia smithii from the Mediterranean Sea. U-series dating indicates that deep-sea corals have persisted in the Mediterranean for over 480, 000 years, especially during cool inter-stadial periods. The most prolific period of growth however appears to have occurred within the Younger Dryas (YD) period from 12, 900 to 11, 700 years BP followed by a short ({approx} 330 years) phase of post-YD coral growth from 11, 230 to 10, 900 years BP. This indicates that deep-sea corals were prolific in the Mediterranean not only during the return to the more glacial-like conditions of the YD, but also following the rapid deglaciation and transition to warmer conditions that followed the end of the YD. Surprisingly, there is a paucity Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) coral ages, implying they were largely absent during this period when cold-water conditions were more prevalent. Radiocarbon ages show that the intermediate depth waters of the Mediterranean generally had {Delta}{sup 14}C compositions similar to surface waters, indicating that these waters were extremely well ventilated. The only exception is a narrow period in the YD (12, 500 {+-} 100 years BP) when several samples of Lophelia pertusa from the Ionian Sea had {Delta}{sup 14}C values falling significantly below the marine curve. Using a refined approach, isolation ages (T{sub isol}) of 300 years to 500 years are estimated for these intermediate (800-1000 m) depth waters relative to surface marine waters, indicating a reduction or absence of deep-water formation in the Ionian and adjacent Adriatic Seas during the YD. Contrary to previous findings, we find no evidence for widespread intrusion of low {Delta}{sup 14}C Atlantic waters into the Mediterranean. Prolific growth of deep-sea corals in the Mediterranean ended abruptly at {approx} 10, 900 years BP, with many of the coral-bearing mounds

  20. Proliferation and demise of deep-sea corals in the Mediterranean during the Younger Dryas

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCulloch, Malcolm; Taviani, Marco; Montagna, Paolo; López Correa, Matthias; Remia, Alessandro; Mortimer, Graham

    2010-09-01

    Uranium-series and radiocarbon ages are reported for deep-sea corals Madrepora oculata, Desmophyllum dianthus, Lophelia pertusa and Caryophyllia smithii from the Mediterranean Sea. U-series dating indicates that deep-sea corals have persisted in the Mediterranean for over 480,000 years, especially during cool interstadial periods. The most prolific period of growth however appears to have occurred within the Younger Dryas (YD) period from 12,900 to 11,700 years BP followed by a short (~ 330 years) phase of post-YD coral growth from 11,230 to 10,900 years BP. This indicates that deep-sea corals were prolific in the Mediterranean not only during the return to the more glacial-like conditions of the YD, but also following the rapid deglaciation and transition to warmer conditions that followed the end of the YD. Surprisingly, there is a paucity Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) coral ages, implying they were largely absent during this period when cold-water conditions were more prevalent. Radiocarbon ages show that the intermediate depth waters of the Mediterranean generally had Δ 14C compositions similar to surface waters, indicating that these waters were extremely well ventilated. The only exception is a narrow period in the YD (12,500 ± 100 years BP) when several samples of Lophelia pertusa from the Ionian Sea had Δ 14C values falling significantly below the marine curve. Using a refined approach, isolation ages (τ isol) of 300 years to 500 years are estimated for these intermediate (800-1000 m) depth waters relative to surface marine waters, indicating a reduction or absence of deep-water formation in the Ionian and adjacent Adriatic Seas during the YD. Contrary to previous findings, we find no evidence for widespread intrusion of low Δ 14C Atlantic waters into the Mediterranean. Prolific growth of deep-sea corals in the Mediterranean ended abruptly at ~ 10,900 years BP, with many of the coral-bearing mounds on the continental slopes being draped in a thin veneer

  1. Environmental Assessment for Selected Regions in the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    1992-01-01

    shallow sill and travel eastward along the interface between the dissimilar water masses at a speed of 3 to 4 kt. Temperature differences on the order of...the eastern Mediterranean. OceanoL Acta 9(3): 239-248. Arevalo, L. and T. Garcia (1982). Corrientes de la Costa de Malaga, metodos y resultados. Inf

  2. A critical review of the Mediterranean sea turtle rescue network: a web looking for a weaver

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judith Ullmann

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available A key issue in conservation biology is recognizing and bridging the gap between scientific results and specific action. We examine sea turtles—charismatic yet endangered flagship species—in the Mediterranean, a sea with historically high levels of exploitation and 22 coastal nations. We take sea turtle rescue facilities as a visible measure for implemented conservation action. Our study yielded 34 confirmed sea turtle rescue centers, 8 first-aid stations, and 7 informal rescue institutions currently in operation. Juxtaposing these facilities to known sea turtle distribution and threat hotspots reveals a clear disconnect. Only 14 of the 22 coastal countries had centers, with clear gaps in the Middle East and Africa. Moreover, the information flow between centers is apparently limited. The populations of the two species nesting in the Mediterranean, the loggerhead Caretta caretta and the green turtle Chelonia mydas, are far below historical levels and face a range of anthropogenic threats at sea and on land. Sea turtle rescue centers are acknowledged to reduce mortality in bycatch hotspots, provide a wealth of scientific data, and raise public awareness. The proposal for a Mediterranean-wide rescue network as published by the Regional Activity Centre for Specially Protected Areas a decade ago has not materialized in its envisioned scope. We discuss the efficiency, gaps, and needs for a rescue network and call for establishing additional rescue centers and an accompanying common online database to connect existing centers. This would provide better information on the number and types of rescue facilities on a Mediterranean scale, improve communication between these facilities, enhance standardization of procedures, yield large-scale data on the number of treated turtles and their injuries, and thus provide valuable input for targeted conservation measures.

  3. Distribution of artificial radionuclides in deep sediments of the Mediterranean Sea

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Garcia-Orellana, J. [Departament de Fisica, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, E-08193 Bellaterra (Spain); Institut de Ciencia i Tecnologia Ambientals (ICTA), Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, E-08193 Bellaterra (Spain)], E-mail: jordi.garcia@uab.cat; Pates, J.M. [Lancaster Environment Centre, Lancaster University, Lancaster, LA1 4YQ (United Kingdom); Masque, P. [Departament de Fisica, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, E-08193 Bellaterra (Spain); Institut de Ciencia i Tecnologia Ambientals (ICTA), Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, E-08193 Bellaterra (Spain); Bruach, J.M. [Departament de Fisica, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, E-08193 Bellaterra (Spain); Sanchez-Cabeza, J.A. [Departament de Fisica, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, E-08193 Bellaterra (Spain); Institut de Ciencia i Tecnologia Ambientals (ICTA), Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, E-08193 Bellaterra (Spain); International Atomic Energy Agency, Marine Environment Laboratories, MC-98000 (Monaco)

    2009-01-01

    Artificial radionuclides enter the Mediterranean Sea mainly through atmospheric deposition following nuclear weapons tests and the Chernobyl accident, but also through the river discharge of nuclear facility effluents. Previous studies of artificial radionuclides impact of the Mediterranean Sea have focussed on shallow, coastal sediments. However, deep sea sediments have the potential to store and accumulate pollutants, including artificial radionuclides. Deep sea marine sediment cores were collected from Mediterranean Sea abyssal plains (depth > 2000 m) and analysed for {sup 239,240}Pu and {sup 137}Cs to elucidate the concentrations, inventories and sources of these radionuclides in the deepest areas of the Mediterranean. The activity - depth profiles of {sup 210}Pb, together with {sup 14}C dating, indicate that sediment mixing redistributes the artificial radionuclides within the first 2.5 cm of the sedimentary column. The excess {sup 210}Pb inventory was used to normalize {sup 239,240}Pu and {sup 137}Cs inventories for variable sediment fluxes. The {sup 239,240}Pu/{sup 210}Pb{sub xs} ratio was uniform across the entire sea, with a mean value of 1.24 x 10{sup -3}, indicating homogeneous fallout of {sup 239,240}Pu. The {sup 137}Cs/{sup 210}Pb{sub xs} ratio showed differences between the eastern (0.049) and western basins (0.030), clearly significant impact of deep sea sediments from the Chernobyl accident. The inventory ratios of {sup 239,240}Pu/{sup 137}Cs were 0.041 and 0.025 in the western and eastern basins respectively, greater than the fallout ratio, 0.021, showing more efficient scavenging of {sup 239,240}Pu in the water column and major sedimentation of {sup 137}Cs in the eastern basin. Although areas with water depths of > 2000 m constitute around 40% of the entire Mediterranean basin, the sediments in these regions only contained 2.7% of the {sup 239,240}Pu and 0.95% of the {sup 137}Cs deposited across the Sea in 2000. These data show that the

  4. Biology and new records of the invasive species Branchiomma bairdi (Annelida: Sabellidae in the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. ARIAS

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available First observations on the reproductive biology of the alien polychaete Branchiomma bairdi (McIntosh, 1885 (Sabellidae in the Mediterranean Sea are provided as well as additional Mediterranean records of the species which can help to understand its introduction and spreading. Re-examination of the specimens from Miseno harbour (Tyrrhenian Sea, Italy revealed the presence of B. bairdi in the central-Mediterranean since September 2004. The histological study of individuals collected in Malta revealed that the species is a simultaneous hermaphrodite, developing male and female gametes in the same body segments; embryos are brooded inside the parent tube. However, there is evidence also for asexual reproduction. The species shows a different reproductive pattern from the previously reported population from the eastern-Pacific; this demonstrates its great plasticity and adaptability. Branchiomma bairdi has an invasive behaviour, colonizing large areas in relatively short-time, and reaching relatively high densities (c.a. 50 individuals/m2. Its expansion throughout several Mediterranean localities is largely a consequence of the high capacity of this species to colonize extremely different habitats and substrates, to the occurrence of sexual and asexual reproductive strategies, and the combination of both. Further, B. bairdi appears to be particularly abundant in confined and anthropogenic degraded areas. Finally, our findings strongly suggest that the pathway of introduction in the Mediterranean, previously hypothesized as the Suez Canal (Lessepsian migration, is most likely via the Gibraltar Strait.

  5. Predictive habitat suitability models to aid conservation of elasmobranch diversity in the central Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lauria, V.; Gristina, M.; Attrill, M. J.; Fiorentino, F.; Garofalo, G.

    2015-08-01

    Commercial fisheries have dramatically impacted elasmobranch populations worldwide. With high capture and bycatch rates, the abundance of many species is rapidly declining and around a quarter of the world’s sharks and rays are threatened with extinction. At a regional scale this negative trend has also been evidenced in the central Mediterranean Sea, where bottom-trawl fisheries have affected the biomass of certain rays (e.g. Raja clavata) and sharks (e.g. Mustelus spp.). Detailed knowledge of elasmobranch habitat requirements is essential for biodiversity conservation and fisheries management, but this is often hampered by a poor understanding of their spatial ecology. Habitat suitability models were used to investigate the habitat preference of nine elasmobranch species and their overall diversity (number of species) in relation to five environmental predictors (i.e. depth, sea surface temperature, surface salinity, slope and rugosity) in the central Mediterranean Sea. Results showed that depth, seafloor morphology and sea surface temperature were the main drivers for elasmobranch habitat suitability. Predictive distribution maps revealed different species-specific patterns of suitable habitat while high assemblage diversity was predicted in deeper offshore waters (400-800 m depth). This study helps to identify priority conservation areas and diversity hot-spots for rare and endangered elasmobranchs in the Mediterranean Sea.

  6. Occurrence, sources and transport pathways of natural and anthropogenic hydrocarbons in deep-sea sediments of the eastern Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parinos, C.; Gogou, A.; Bouloubassi, I.; Pedrosa-Pàmies, R.; Hatzianestis, I.; Sanchez-Vidal, A.; Rousakis, G.; Velaoras, D.; Krokos, G.; Lykousis, V.

    2013-09-01

    Surface sediments collected from deep basins (1018-4087 m depth) of the eastern Mediterranean Sea (Ionian Sea, southern Aegean Sea and northwestern Levantine Sea) were analyzed for aliphatic and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons as tracers of natural and anthropogenic inputs. Concentrations of total aliphatic hydrocarbons, n-alkanes and the unresolved complex mixture (UCM) of aliphatic hydrocarbons varied significantly, ranging from 1.34 to 49.2 μg g-1, 145 to 4810 ng g-1 and 0.73 to 36.7 μg g-1, respectively, while concentrations of total polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) ranged between 11.6 and 223 ng g-1. Molecular profiles of determined hydrocarbons reflect a mixed contribution from both natural and anthropogenic sources in deep-sea sediments of the eastern Mediterranean Sea, i.e., terrestrial plant waxes, degraded petroleum products, unburned fossil fuels and combustion of grass, wood and coal. Hydrocarbon mixtures display significant variability amongst sub-regions, reflecting differences in the relative importance of inputs from various sources and phase associations/transport pathways of individual hydrocarbons that impact on their overall distribution and fate. Hydrocarbon concentrations correlated significantly with the organic carbon content of sediments, indicating that the latter exerts an important control on their transport and ultimate accumulation in deep basins. Additionally, water masses' circulation characteristics also seem to influence the regional features and distribution patterns of hydrocarbons. Our findings highlight the role of deep basins/canyons as repositories of both natural and anthropogenic chemical species.

  7. Seemingly divergent sea surface temperature proxy records in the central Mediterranean during the last deglaciation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M.-A. Sicre

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Sea surface temperatures (SSTs were reconstructed over the last 25 000 yr using alkenone paleothermometry and planktonic foraminifera assemblages from two cores of the central Mediterranean Sea: the MD04-2797 core (Siculo–Tunisian channel and the MD90-917 core (South Adriatic Sea. Comparison of the centennial scale structure of the two temperature signals during the last deglaciation period reveals significant differences in timing and amplitude. We suggest that seasonal changes likely account for seemingly proxy record divergences during abrupt transitions from glacial to interglacial climates and for the apparent short duration of the Younger Dryas (YD depicted by the alkenone time series, a feature that has already been stressed in earlier studies on the Mediterranean deglaciation.

  8. Studies and site characterization for a km3 scale underwater neutrino telescope in the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riccobene, G.

    2000-08-01

    NEMO (NEutrino Mediterranean Observatory) is an INFN Collaboration aiming at a feasibility study of a km3 scale underwater Neutrino Detector to be located in the Mediterranean Sea. The Project concerns, at the present stage, an R&D program for marine sites characterization, low power data acquisition electronics and development of Montecarlo codes to study the best performing layout of the detector in collaboration with a team of engineering consultants to study the detector mechanical structure. The major effort of the collaboration was, up to now, the study of deep sea properties, in several sites close to the Italian Coasts. Measurements were performed together with oceanogragraphic Institutions (Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Osservatorio Geofisico Sperimentale) and the Italian Military Navy. Within the end of year 2000 NEMO is going to deploy part of a deep sea test station at 2000m depth. .

  9. The circulation of the Mediterranean Sea: a historical review of experimental investigations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Bergamasco

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available The Mediterranean Sea is an enclosed basin composed of two similar basins and different sub-basins. It is a concentration basin, where evaporation exceeds precipitation. In the surface layer there is an inflow of Atlantic water which is modified along its path to the Eastern basin. This transformation occurs through surface heat loss and evaporation specifically in the Levantine basin. The Mediterranean is furthermore the site of water mass formation processes, which can be studied experimentally because of their easy accessibility. There are two main reasons why the Mediterranean is important. The first one is the impact of the Mediterranean on the global thermohaline circulation, the second reason is that the Mediterranean basin can be considered as Laborartory for investigating processes occurring on the global scale of the world ocean. In this paper we want to provide a short historical review of the evolving knowledge of the Mediterranean circulation that has emerged from experimental investigations over the last decades. We start by describing the old picture of the basin circulation which had stationary, smooth large scale patterns. Then we show the major experiments that led to the discovery of the sub-basin scale circulation and its mesoscale features. We conclude with the dynamical discovery of EMT in the 1990s and the most exciting ongoing new research programmes.

  10. FEATURES AND PROBLEMS WITH HISTORICAL GREAT EARTHQUAKES AND TSUNAMIS IN THE MEDITERRANEAN SEA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lobkovsky L.

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The present study examines the historical earthquakes and tsunamis of 21 July 365 and of 9 February 1948 in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea. Numerical simulations were performed for the tsunamis generated by underwater seismic sources in frames of the keyboard model, as well as for their propagation in the Mediterranean Sea basin. Similarly examined were three different types of seismic sources at the same localization near the Island of Crete for the earthquake of 21 July 365, and of two different types of seismic sources for the earthquake of 9 February 1948 near the Island of Karpathos. For each scenario, the tsunami wave field characteristics from the earthquake source to coastal zones in Mediterranean Sea’s basin were obtained and histograms were constructed showing the distribution of maximum tsunami wave heights, along a 5-m isobath. Comparison of tsunami wave characteristics for all the above mentioned scenarios, demonstrates that underwater earthquakes with magnitude M > 7 in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea basin, can generate waves with coastal runup up to 9 m.

  11. Interpreting elevated space-borne HCHO columns over the Mediterranean Sea using the OMI sensor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Sabolis

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Formaldehyde (HCHO is an oxidation product of a wide range of volatile organic compounds (VOCs and important atmospheric constituent found in both the polluted urban atmosphere and remote background sites. In this study, remotely sensed data of HCHO vertical column densities are analyzed over the Mediterranean Sea using the Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI. Data analysis indicates a marked seasonal cycle with a summer maximum and winter minimum confined to the marine environment during a three year period (2005–2007 examined. A possible retrieval artifact associated with Saharan dust transport over the region is explored by changing intensity of Saharan dust sources in GEOS-Chem following the recommendation of Generoso et al. (2008. Recalculated air mass factors (AMF, based on the new values of aerosol loadings, lead to a reduction of the summertime "hot spot" in OMI retrieval of HCHO vertical columns over the Mediterranean Sea; however, even after the correction, enhanced values are still present in this region. To explain these values, marine biogenic sources of VOCs are examined. Calculations indicate that emission of phytoplankton-produced isoprene is not likely to explain the enhanced HCHO vertical columns over the Mediterranean Sea. Model simulations in conjunction with measurements studies may be required to fully explore the complex mechanism of HCHO formation over the Mediterranean and its implications for the air quality in the region.

  12. Trace element concentrations in the Mediterranean monk seal (Monachus monachus) in the eastern Mediterranean Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Formigaro, Costanza; Karamanlidis, Alexandros A; Dendrinos, Panagiotis; Marsili, Letizia; Silvi, Marina; Zaccaroni, Annalisa

    2017-01-15

    The Mediterranean monk seal (Monachus monachus) is one of the most endangered marine mammals in the world. The biggest sub-population of the species survives in Greece, where understanding the effects of pollution on the survival of the species has been identified as a national research and conservation priority. From 1990 to 2013 we collected tissue samples from 59 deceased monk seals in order to: (i) Define the concentration of trace elements (As, Pb, Cd, Hg, Se, Cr, Ni) in three different matrices (i.e., blubber, liver and kidney), (ii) Determine whether differences in trace element concentrations are age- or gender-related, (iii) Evaluate the potential effects of these pollutants. The study recorded differences in trace element concentrations among matrices, but in general, trace element exposure in Mediterranean monk seals in Greece was low and within the non-acutely toxic levels for Pinnipeds. Only arsenic concentrations were at the upper limit of the normal range observed in other marine mammals (0.69±0.55mg/kg w.w. in blubber, 0.79±0.62mg/kg w.w. in liver and 0.79±0.59mg/kg w.w. in kidney). We recorded also exceptionally high Hg concentrations in a single adult female (24.88mg/kg w.w.). Age- and gender-related differences were also recorded and were due to various biological, ecological and chemical factors. Based on the results of the study, potentially adverse effects on the immune and endocrine system of the Mediterranean monk seal from some pollutants (e.g., As, Cd, Se, Ni, Cr) cannot be ruled out, which may expose the Mediterranean seal population in Greece to epizootics and stochastic phenomena of mass mortality. It is therefore of utmost importance that pollutant monitoring becomes an integral component of the standard monitoring protocol of the endangered Mediterranean monk seal in the eastern Mediterranean. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Monitoring the mesoscale circulation of the Western Mediterranean Sea using SSS derived from SMOS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olmedo, Estrella; Isern-Fontanet, Jordi; Turiel, Antonio; Portabella, Marcos; Ballabrera-Poy, Joaquim

    2016-04-01

    The circulation in the Mediterranean Sea is characterized by the inflow of fresh waters from the Atlantic Ocean through the Strait of Gibraltar. These waters, characterized by their lower salinity, create baroclinic instabilities that spawn eddies with sizes of the order of 100 km. These eddies have been widely analyzed using Sea Surface Temperature (SST) observations. Recent improvements in the Sea Surface Salinity (SSS) retrieval and bias correction methodologies applied to the Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) satellite data have led, for the first time, to the generation of SSS maps that capture the signature of these structures. This opens the door for the generation of high spatial and temporal density maps in the Mediterranean, which can be used in a wide variety of oceanographic applications. In particular, the signature of the Alboran gyre and the eddy propagation across the Algerian coast are well reproduced, allowing for the first time to characterize the baroclinicity of the flow. The SMOS data are strongly affected by Radio Frequency Interference (RFI) and land-sea contamination in the Mediterranean Sea. Two important SSS retrieval algorithm improvements are proposed in this study. First, with more than six years of SMOS data acquisitions, there is enough data to empirically characterize and correct systematic biases. Second, the filtering criterion has been modified to account for the statistical distributions of SSS at each ocean grid point. This allows retrieving a value of SSS which is less affected by outliers originated from RFI and other effects. In this study, high level (spatio-temporally consistent) SSS maps are obtained by averaging the SMOS SSS retrievals using a classical objective analysis scheme and then combining the resulting maps with Sea Surface Temperature (SST) maps by means of multifractal fusion. The SSS fused maps contain well-defined spatial structures, suitable for studying the mesoscale activity in the Western

  14. Abrupt climate shift in the Western Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schroeder, K.; Chiggiato, J.; Bryden, H. L.; Borghini, M.; Ben Ismail, S.

    2016-03-01

    One century of oceanographic measurements has evidenced gradual increases in temperature and salinity of western Mediterranean water masses, even though the vertical stratification has basically remained unchanged. Starting in 2005, the basic structure of the intermediate and deep layers abruptly changed. We report here evidence of reinforced thermohaline variability in the deep western basin with significant dense water formation events producing large amounts of warmer, saltier and denser water masses than ever before. We provide a detailed chronological order to these changes, giving an overview of the new water masses and following their route from the central basin interior to the east (toward the Tyrrhenian) and toward the Atlantic Ocean. As a consequence of this climate shift, new deep waters outflowing through Gibraltar will impact the North Atlantic in terms of salt and heat input. In addition, modifications in the Mediterranean abyssal ecosystems and biogeochemical cycles are to be expected.

  15. A Sea Change : Exotics In the eastern Mediterranean.

    OpenAIRE

    Galil, B.S.; Zenetos, A

    2002-01-01

    The eastern Mediterranean is susceptible to biological invasions because of its placement between the Atlantic, Pontic and Erythrean regions, busy maritime traffic, and lagoons and bays that are crowded with fish and shellfish farms. However, the greatest influx of invaders resulted from the opening of the Suez Canal in 1869, which allowed entry of Indo-Pacific and Erythrean biota. Exotic macro phytes, invertebrates and fish are found in most coastal habitats in the eastern Med...

  16. First record of the sipunculan worm Phascolion (Phascolion caupo Hendrix, 1975 in the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L.M. FERRERO-VICENTE

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Specimens of the sipunculan worm Phascolion (Phascolion caupo Hendrix, 1975 have been collected for the first time in the Mediterranean Sea, thus increasing the number of known sipunculan species of up to 36 in this area. They were encountered on soft bottoms from the coast of San Pedro del Pinatar (Western Mediterranean. Thirty specimens were collected at a depth ranging from 32.6 to 37.2 m, mainly in sandy substrata with high load of silt and clays. 80% of the individuals were found inhabiting empty shells of gastropods or empty tubes of serpulid polychaetes.

  17. Toward a dynamic biogeochemical division of the Mediterranean Sea in a context of global climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reygondeau, Gabriel; Olivier Irisson, Jean; Guieu, Cecile; Gasparini, Stephane; Ayata, Sakina; Koubbi, Philippe

    2013-04-01

    In recent decades, it has been found useful to ecoregionalise the pelagic environment assuming that within each partition environmental conditions are distinguishable and unique. Indeed, each partition of the ocean that is proposed aimed to delineate the main oceanographical and ecological patterns to provide a geographical framework of marine ecosystems for ecological studies and management purposes. The aim of the present work is to integrate and process existing data on the pelagic environment of the Mediterranean Sea in order to define biogeochemical regions. Open access databases including remote sensing observations, oceanographic campaign data and physical modeling simulations are used. These various dataset allow the multidisciplinary view required to understand the interactions between climate and Mediterranean marine ecosystems. The first step of our study has consisted in a statistical selection of a set of crucial environmental factors to propose the most parsimonious biogeographical approach that allows detecting the main oceanographic structure of the Mediterranean Sea. Second, based on the identified set of environmental parameters, both non-hierarchical and hierarchical clustering algorithms have been tested. Outputs from each methodology are then inter-compared to propose a robust map of the biotopes (unique range of environmental parameters) of the area. Each biotope was then modeled using a non parametric environmental niche method to infer a dynamic biogeochemical partition. Last, the seasonal, inter annual and long term spatial changes of each biogeochemical regions were investigated. The future of this work will be to perform a second partition to subdivide the biogeochemical regions according to biotic features of the Mediterranean Sea (ecoregions). This second level of division will thus be used as a geographical framework to identify ecosystems that have been altered by human activities (i.e. pollution, fishery, invasive species) for the

  18. Data from investigation on seismic Sea waves events in the Eastern Mediterranean from 1800 to 1900 A.D.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. ANTONOPOULOS

    1980-06-01

    Full Text Available Tsunamis from 1800-1900 A.D. in the Eastern Mediterranean
    Sea between 31-44 N and 18-36 E excluding the Black Sea and
    the Italian coasts of the Adriatic Sea is the object of the present
    paper.

  19. Data from investigation on seismic Sea waves events in the Eastern Mediterranean from 1900 to 1980 A.D.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. ANTONOPOULOS

    1980-06-01

    Full Text Available Tsunamis from 1900 to 1980 A.D. in the Eastern Mediterranean
    Sea between 31-44 N and 18-36 E excluding the Black Sea
    and the Italian coasts of the Adriatic Sea is the object of the
    present paper.

  20. Data from investigation on seismic Sea waves events in the Eastern Mediterranean from 1000 to 1500 A.D.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. ANTONOPOULOS

    1980-06-01

    Full Text Available Tsunamis from 1000 to 1500 A.D. in the Eastern Mediterranean
    Sea between 31-44 N and 18-36 E excluding the Black Sea
    and the Italian coasts of the Adriatic Sea is the object of the
    present paper.

  1. Data from investigation on seismic Sea waves events in the Eastern Mediterranean from 1500 to 1800 A.D.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. ANTONOPOULOS

    1980-06-01

    Full Text Available Tsunamis from 1500-1800 A.D., in the Eastern Mediterranean
    Sea between 31-44 N and 18-36 E excluding the Black Sea and the
    Italian coasts of the Adriatic Sea is the object of the present
    paper.

  2. Gonioinfradens paucidentatus (A. Milne Edwards, 1861 (Crustacea, Decapoda, Portunidae: a new alien crab in the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. CORSINI-FOKA

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available The first record for the Mediterranean Sea of the Red Sea/Indo-Pacific portunid Gonioinfradens paucidentatus (red swimming crab is documented. A detailed description of the specimens collected at Rodos Island (southeastern Aegean Sea is given, while possible introduction vectors of the species in the area are discussed.

  3. Gonioinfradens paucidentatus (A. Milne Edwards, 1861 (Crustacea, Decapoda, Portunidae: a new alien crab in the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. CORSINI-FOKA

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available The first record for the Mediterranean Sea of the Red Sea/Indo-Pacific portunid Gonioinfradens paucidentatus (red swimming crab is documented. A detailed description of the specimens collected at Rodos Island (southeastern Aegean Sea is given, while possible introduction vectors of the species in the area are discussed.

  4. Zooplankton of the Black Sea and the Eastern Mediterranean: Similarities and dissimilarities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A.V. KOVALEV

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available A synthesis of data on abundance and biomass of zooplankton in the Eastern Mediterranean (EMED and the Black Sea shows major differences in the composition and structure of pelagic communities in the two basins. Few Mediterranean planktonic animals have invaded and acclimatised in the Black Sea. The great bulk of Black Sea species is represented by coastal inhabitants that spread throughout the whole basin. This process has been called “neritization” of the Black Sea fauna. Peculiarities in zooplankton assemblages of the Black Sea have been further strengthened over the last few decades due to increasing eutrophication and the massive invasion of the ctenophore Mnemiopsis leidyi. The relative contribution of copepods, cladocerans, chaetognaths, and appendicularians to total zooplankton biomass has notably decreased , whereas gelatinous groups (mainly represented by Mnemiopsis and Aurelia aurita contributed up to 99% of total wet weight in 1995 in the Black Sea.The basic features of planktonic fauna in the Black Sea are mainly due do the geo-morphological characters of the basin and the limited exchanges with the EMED, that are confined to the surface-subsurface layers in the Dardanelles and Bosphorus Straits. However, the dramatic changes that recently occurred in the structure of zooplankton assemblages seem to have been caused by heavy anthropogenic impact on the pelagic system.

  5. Zooplankton of the Black Sea and the Eastern Mediterranean: Similarities and dissimilarities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A.V. KOVALEV

    2001-06-01

    Full Text Available A synthesis of data on abundance and biomass of zooplankton in the Eastern Mediterranean (EMED and the Black Sea shows major differences in the composition and structure of pelagic communities in the two basins. Few Mediterranean planktonic animals have invaded and acclimatised in the Black Sea. The great bulk of Black Sea species is represented by coastal inhabitants that spread throughout the whole basin. This process has been called “neritization” of the Black Sea fauna. Peculiarities in zooplankton assemblages of the Black Sea have been further strengthened over the last few decades due to increasing eutrophication and the massive invasion of the ctenophore Mnemiopsis leidyi. The relative contribution of copepods, cladocerans, chaetognaths, and appendicularians to total zooplankton biomass has notably decreased , whereas gelatinous groups (mainly represented by Mnemiopsis and Aurelia aurita contributed up to 99% of total wet weight in 1995 in the Black Sea. The basic features of planktonic fauna in the Black Sea are mainly due do the geo-morphological characters of the basin and the limited exchanges with the EMED, that are confined to the surface-subsurface layers in the Dardanelles and Bosphorus Straits. However, the dramatic changes that recently occurred in the structure of zooplankton assemblages seem to have been caused by heavy anthropogenic impact on the pelagic system.

  6. Modeling the spatial and temporal population dynamics of the copepod Centropages typicus in the northwestern Mediterranean Sea during the year 2001 using a 3D ecosystem model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlotti, F.; Eisenhauer, L.; Campbell, R.; Diaz, F.

    2014-07-01

    The spatio-temporal dynamics of a simulated Centropages typicus (Kröyer) population during the year 2001 at the regional scale of the northwestern Mediterranean Sea are addressed using a 3D coupled physical-biogeochemical model. The setup of the coupled biological model comprises a pelagic plankton ecosystem model and a stage-structured population model forced by the 3D velocity and temperature fields provided by an eddy-resolving regional circulation model. The population model for C. typicus (C. t. below) represents demographic processes through five groups of developmental stages, which depend on underlying individual growth and development processes and are forced by both biotic (prey and predator fields) and abiotic (temperature, advection) factors from the coupled physical-biogeochemical model. The objective is to characterize C. t. ontogenic habitats driven by physical and trophic processes. The annual dynamics are presented for two of the main oceanographic stations in the Gulf of Lions, which are representative of shelf and open sea conditions, while the spatial distributions over the whole area are presented for three dates during the year, in early and late spring and in winter. The simulated spatial patterns of C. t. developmental stages are closely related to mesoscale hydrodynamic features and circulation patterns. The seasonal and spatial distributions on the Gulf of Lions shelf depend on the seasonal interplay between the Rhône river plume, the mesoscale eddies on the shelf and the Northern Current acting as either as a dynamic barrier between the shelf and the open sea or allowing cross-shelf exchanges. In the central gyre of the northwestern Mediterranean Sea, the patchiness of plankton is tightly linked to mesoscale frontal systems, surface eddies and filaments and deep gradients. Due to its flexibility in terms of its diet, C. t. succeeds in maintaining its population in both coastal and offshore areas year round. The simulations suggest that

  7. Biodiversity loss and turnover in alternative states in the Mediterranean Sea: a case study on meiofauna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bianchelli, Silvia; Buschi, Emanuela; Danovaro, Roberto; Pusceddu, Antonio

    2016-01-01

    In the Mediterranean Sea hard-bottom macroalgal meadows may switch to alternative and less-productive barrens grounds, as a result of sea urchins overgrazing. Meiofauna (and especially nematodes) represent key components of benthic ecosystems, are highly-diversified, sensitive to environmental change and anthropogenic impacts, but, so-far, have been neglected in studies on regime shifts. We report here that sedimentary organic matter contents, meiofaunal taxa richness and community composition, nematode α- and β-biodiversity vary significantly between alternative macroalgal and barren states. The observed differences are consistent in six areas spread across the Mediterranean Sea, irrespective of barren extent. Our results suggest also that the low biodiversity levels in barren states are the result of habitat loss/fragmentation, which is associated also with a lower availability of trophic resources. Furthermore, differences in meiofaunal and nematode abundance, biomass and diversity between macroalgal meadow and barren states persist when the latter is not fully formed, or consists of patches interspersed in macroalgal meadows. Since barren grounds are expanding rapidly along the Mediterranean Sea and meiofauna are a key trophic component in marine ecosystems, we suggest that the extension and persistence of barrens at the expenses of macroalgal meadows could also affect resilience of higher trophic level. PMID:27708343

  8. Biodiversity loss and turnover in alternative states in the Mediterranean Sea: a case study on meiofauna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bianchelli, Silvia; Buschi, Emanuela; Danovaro, Roberto; Pusceddu, Antonio

    2016-10-01

    In the Mediterranean Sea hard-bottom macroalgal meadows may switch to alternative and less-productive barrens grounds, as a result of sea urchins overgrazing. Meiofauna (and especially nematodes) represent key components of benthic ecosystems, are highly-diversified, sensitive to environmental change and anthropogenic impacts, but, so-far, have been neglected in studies on regime shifts. We report here that sedimentary organic matter contents, meiofaunal taxa richness and community composition, nematode α- and β-biodiversity vary significantly between alternative macroalgal and barren states. The observed differences are consistent in six areas spread across the Mediterranean Sea, irrespective of barren extent. Our results suggest also that the low biodiversity levels in barren states are the result of habitat loss/fragmentation, which is associated also with a lower availability of trophic resources. Furthermore, differences in meiofaunal and nematode abundance, biomass and diversity between macroalgal meadow and barren states persist when the latter is not fully formed, or consists of patches interspersed in macroalgal meadows. Since barren grounds are expanding rapidly along the Mediterranean Sea and meiofauna are a key trophic component in marine ecosystems, we suggest that the extension and persistence of barrens at the expenses of macroalgal meadows could also affect resilience of higher trophic level.

  9. Habitat use, vertical and horizontal behaviour of Atlantic bluefin tuna (Thunnus thynnus) in the Northwestern Mediterranean Sea in relation to oceanographic conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, Robert Klaus; Fromentin, Jean-Marc; Demarcq, Hervé; Bonhommeau, Sylvain

    2017-07-01

    We investigated the habitat utilization, vertical and horizontal behaviour of Atlantic bluefin tuna Thunnus thynnus (ABFT) in relation to oceanographic conditions in the northwestern Mediterranean Sea, based on 36 pop-up archival tags and different environmental data sets. Tags were deployed on early mature ABFT (127-255 cm) between July and November in 2007-2014, on the shelf area off Marseille, France. The data obtained from these tags provided 1643 daily summaries of ABFT vertical behaviour over 8 years of tag deployment. Based on a hierarchical clustering of this data, we could identify four principle daily vertical behaviour types, representing surface (≦ 10 m) and subsurface (10-100 m) orientation, moderate (50-200 m) and deep (≧ 200 m) diving behaviour. These vertical behaviour types showed seasonal variations with partly opposing trends in their frequencies. Accordingly, ABFT were more surface orientated during summer, while moderate diving behaviour was more common during winter. Depth time series data further revealed inverted day-night patterns for both of these periods. Tagged ABFT frequented the surface waters more regularly during daytime and deeper waters during the night in summer, while the opposite pattern was found in winter. Seasonal changes in the vertical behaviour of ABFT were accompanied by simultaneous changes in environmental conditions (SST, chla, thermal stratification). Accordingly, surface orientation and moderate diving behaviour appeared to be triggered by the thermal stratification of the water column, though less pronounced than previously reported for ABFT in the North Atlantic, probably indicating adaptive vertical behaviour related to the availability of epipelagic food resources (anchovies and sardines). Deep diving behaviour was particularly frequent during months of high biological productivity (February-May), although one recovered tag showed periodic and unusual long spike dives during summer-autumn, in relation to

  10. Seasonal variation in blood and muscle oxygen stores attributed to diving behavior, environmental temperature and pregnancy in a marine predator, the California sea lion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villegas-Amtmann, Stella; Atkinson, Shannon; Paras-Garcia, Alberto; Costa, Daniel P

    2012-08-01

    Survival depends on an animal's ability to find and acquire prey. In diving vertebrates, this ability is directly related to their physiological capability (e.g. oxygen stores). We studied the seasonal variation in oxygen stores, body temperature and body condition in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) (CSL) as a function of seasonal variation in temperature, primary productivity, diving behavior and reproductive stage. During summer, blood oxygen stores were significantly greater and muscle oxygen stores were significantly lower than in winter. Total oxygen stores, body condition and body temperature did not change between seasons but variations in body temperature were greater during summer. Changes in oxygen stores are partly attributed to diving behavior, temperature and pregnancy that could increase oxygen consumption. Blood and muscle oxygen stores appear to be influenced by reproductive state. Blood oxygen stores are more likely influenced by diving behavior and temperature than muscle oxygen stores.

  11. Strangers in Paradise: The biogeographic range expansion of the foraminifera Amphistegina in the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langer, M. R.; Weinmann, A. E.; Rödder, D.; Lötters, S.

    2012-04-01

    Species distribution models (SDMs) have become important tools in biogeography and biodiversity research over the last decades. They are mainly based on the fundamental niche concept and allow the correlative prediction of species' potential distributional ranges by combining occurrence records with information on environmental (e.g. climatic) conditions. The generated environmental envelope of a species is projected into geographic space, thus defining areas of adequate habitat suitability. Here we apply a species distribution model (SDM) to assess potential range expansions of Amphistegina spp. in the Mediterranean Sea under current und future climate conditions. The model uses an environmental envelope of information from localities where amphisteginids are currently known to occur. Amphisteginid foraminifers are a group of circumtropically distributed, larger symbiont-bearing, calcareous foraminifera that have a well-documented record as detectors of historical climate change. They are currently expanding their biogeographic range in the Mediterranean Sea and rapidly progressing northwestward, closely approaching the Adriatic and the Tyrrhenian Sea. The shift in range locally leads to profound ecological changes where amphisteginids have become the dominant species along entire stretches of coastline. Mass deposits of amphisteginids reflect an increased carbonate production and reduced assemblage diversity, and these are likely to trigger major changes in ecosystem functioning. It is anticipated that the ongoing warming trend will convey the northwestward migration of amphisteginid foraminifers. Our model indicates that further warming is likely to cause a northwestward range extension and predicts dispersal through the straits of Sicily, Messina and Otranto into the Tyrrhenian and Adriatic Sea. Rapid proliferation and the extreme abundances of amphisteginid foraminifera affect the dynamic equilibrium of established foraminiferal biotas. In the eastern

  12. Turbulent mixing in the eddy transport of Western Mediterranean Intermediate Water to the Alboran Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forryan, A.; Allen, J. T.; Edhouse, E.; Silburn, B.; Reeve, K.; Tesi, E.

    2012-09-01

    Western Mediterranean Intermediate Water (WIW) is formed in winter in the North-Western Mediterranean. WIW, identifiable as a distinct temperature minimum layer between Atlantic-Mediterranean Interface waters and the denser Levantine Intermediate Water, is carried down the east coast of Spain in anticyclonic mode water eddies, or “weddies” eventually reaching the Alboran sea. A previous detailed analysis of a weddy in the vicinity of the Almeria-Oran front indicated that it could have accounted for 10% of a winter's production of WIW, but this analysis was unable to consider turbulent dissipation. In this study we present microstructure measurements across a similar observation of WIW in the vicinity of the Almeria-Oran front and show that this figure could be conservative by 15-50% due to the turbulent dissipation associated with a weddy.

  13. Midwater Bioluminescence Assessment in the West Alboran Gyre (Mediterranean Sea)

    Science.gov (United States)

    1991-09-01

    Mediterranean (see Mills and Goy, m 1988, for review), moving up into the upper 100 m during the night. Our night dive observations tented to support that...413 484.7 91.4I 57)491 Nepheloctena white- tent -ade 2939-CGS Creno 511 491.2 86.3 P42)491 Ocyropsis macalata BWI-4 Creno 356 492.2 86.3 F39)491...umbrellar margin. Solmissus (the single most abundant medusa) is also transparent and brightly luminescent from the lateral umbrellar margin,the velum

  14. The Ancestral Carnivore Karyotype As Substantiated by Comparative Chromosome Painting of Three Pinnipeds, the Walrus, the Steller Sea Lion and the Baikal Seal (Pinnipedia, Carnivora.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Violetta R Beklemisheva

    Full Text Available Karyotype evolution in Carnivora is thoroughly studied by classical and molecular cytogenetics and supplemented by reconstructions of Ancestral Carnivora Karyotype (ACK. However chromosome painting information from two pinniped families (Odobenidae and Otariidae is noticeably missing. We report on the construction of the comparative chromosome map for species from each of the three pinniped families: the walrus (Odobenus rosmarus, Odobenidae-monotypic family, near threatened Steller sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus, Otariidae and the endemic Baikal seal (Pusa sibirica, Phocidae using combination of human, domestic dog and stone marten whole-chromosome painting probes. The earliest karyological studies of Pinnipedia showed that pinnipeds were characterized by a pronounced karyological conservatism that is confirmed here with species from Phocidae, Otariidae and Odobenidae sharing same low number of conserved human autosomal segments (32. Chromosome painting in Pinnipedia and comparison with non-pinniped carnivore karyotypes provide strong support for refined structure of ACK with 2n = 38. Constructed comparative chromosome maps show that pinniped karyotype evolution was characterized by few tandem fusions, seemingly absent inversions and slow rate of genome rearrangements (less then one rearrangement per 10 million years. Integrative comparative analyses with published chromosome painting of Phoca vitulina revealed common cytogenetic signature for Phoca/Pusa branch and supports Phocidae and Otaroidea (Otariidae/Odobenidae as sister groups. We revealed rearrangements specific for walrus karyotype and found the chromosomal signature linking together families Otariidae and Odobenidae. The Steller sea lion karyotype is the most conserved among three studied species and differs from the ACK by single fusion. The study underlined the strikingly slow karyotype evolution of the Pinnipedia in general and the Otariidae in particular.

  15. PHARMACOKINETICS OF TRAMADOL HYDROCHLORIDE AND ITS METABOLITE O-DESMETHYLTRAMADOL FOLLOWING A SINGLE, ORALLY ADMINISTERED DOSE IN CALIFORNIA SEA LIONS (ZALOPHUS CALIFORNIANUS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boonstra, Jennifer L; Barbosa, Lorraine; Van Bonn, William G; Johnson, Shawn P; Gulland, Frances M D; Cox, Sherry K; Martin-Jimenez, Tomas

    2015-09-01

    Tramadol is a synthetic, centrally acting, opiate-like analgesic that is structurally related to codeine and morphine. The objective of this study was to determine the pharmacokinetics of tramadol hydrochloride and its major active metabolite O-desmethyltramadol (M1) in the California sea lion (Zalophus californianus). A single dose of tramadol was administered orally in fish at 2 mg/kg to a total of 15 wild California sea lions admitted for rehabilitation. Twenty-four total blood samples were collected post drug administration at 10, 20, 30, and 45 min and at 1, 3, 5, 6, 8, 12, and 24 hr. Blood plasma was separated and stored at -80°C until analysis with high-performance liquid chromatography was performed to determine levels of tramadol and M1, the major active metabolite. The results indicate that the plasma levels of parent tramadol are low or negligible during the first 30-45 min and then reach the predicted mean maximum plasma concentration of 358 ng/ml at 1.52 hr. The M1 metabolite was not detectable in 21 of 24 plasma samples, below the level of quantification of 5 ng/ml in one sample, and detectable at 11 and 17 ng/ml in two of the samples. This study suggests that a 2 mg/kg dose would need to be administered every 6-8 hr to maintain concentrations of tramadol above the minimum human analgesic level for mild to moderate pain. Based on dosing simulations, a dose of 4 mg/kg q8 hr or q12 hr, on average, may represent an adequate compromise, but further studies are needed using a larger sample size. Pharmacodynamic studies are warranted to determine if tramadol provides analgesic effects in this species. The potential for tramadol toxicosis at any dose also has not been determined in this species.

  16. Stable carbon and nitrogen isotope trophic enrichment factors for Steller sea lion vibrissae relative to milk and fish/invertebrate diets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stricker, Craig A.; Christ, Aaron M.; Wunder, Michael B.; Doll, Andrew C.; Farley, Sean D.; Rea, Lorrie D.; Rosen, David A. S.; Scherer, R. D.; Tollit, Dominic J.

    2015-01-01

    Nutritional constraints have been proposed as a contributor to population declines in the endangered Steller sea lion Eumetopias jubatus in some regions of the North Pacific. Isotopic analysis of vibrissae (whiskers) is a potentially useful approach to resolving the nutritional ecology of this species because long-term (up to 8 yr) dietary information is sequentially recorded and metabolically inert once formed. Additionally, vibrissae are grown in utero, potentially offering indirect inference on maternal diet. However, diet reconstruction using isotopic techniques requires a priori knowledge of trophic enrichment factors (TEFs), which can vary relative to diet quality and among animal species. In this study, we provide new TEF estimates for (1) maternal relative to pup vibrissae during both gestation and nursing and (2) adult vibrissae relative to a complex diet. Further, we refine vibrissa-milk TEFs based on an additional 76 animals with an age distribution ranging from 1 to 20 mo. Mother-pup vibrissae TEF values during gestation and nursing were near zero for δ13C and averaged 0.8 and 1.6‰, respectively, for δ15N. In contrast, vibrissa-fish/invertebrate TEFs averaged 3.3 (± 0.3 SD) and 3.7‰ (±0.3) for lipid-free δ13C and δ15N, respectively. Average lipid-free δ13C and δ15N vibrissa-milk TEFs were 2.5 (±0.9) and 1.8‰ (±0.8), respectively, and did not differ among metapopulations. Empirically determined TEFs are critical for accurate retrospective diet modeling, particularly for evaluating the hypothesis of nutritional deficiency contributing to the lack of Steller sea lion population recovery in some regions of Alaska.

  17. The ecology of the Ostracoda (Crustacea) species obtained from the coasts of Iskenderun Bay (Eastern Mediterranean Sea)

    OpenAIRE

    Paçal, Ferda Perçin

    2011-01-01

    Abstract The aim of this study was to understand the ecology of the ostracoda species obtained from Iskenderun Bay, the Eastern Mediterranean Sea. Ecological parameters like temperature and salinity, affecting the distribution of the live ostracoda species are considerably higher in Iskenderun Bay than the middle and western parts of the Mediterranean Sea. This study was carried out along the coasts of Iskenderun Bay between 22-26 September 2002. Total of 27 genera and 56 ostracoda species we...

  18. Loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta): A target species for monitoring litter ingested by marine organisms in the Mediterranean Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matiddi, Marco; Hochsheid, Sandra; Camedda, Andrea; Baini, Matteo; Cocumelli, Cristiano; Serena, Fabrizio; Tomassetti, Paolo; Travaglini, Andrea; Marra, Stefano; Campani, Tommaso; Scholl, Francesco; Mancusi, Cecilia; Amato, Ezio; Briguglio, Paolo; Maffucci, Fulvio; Fossi, Maria Cristina; Bentivegna, Flegra; de Lucia, Giuseppe Andrea

    2017-06-23

    Marine litter is any persistent, manufactured or processed solid material discarded, disposed of or abandoned in the marine and coastal environment. Ingestion of marine litter can have lethal and sub-lethal effects on wildlife that accidentally ingests it, and sea turtles are particularly susceptible to this threat. The European Commission drafted the 2008/56/EC Marine Strategy Framework Directive with the aim to achieve a Good Environmental Status (GES), and the loggerhead sea turtle (Caretta caretta, Linnaeus 1758) was selected for monitoring the amount and composition of litter ingested by marine animals. An analogous decision has been made under the UNEP/MAP Barcelona Convention for the protection of the Mediterranean Sea, following the Ecosystem Approach. This work provides for the first time, two possible scenarios for the Marine Strategy Framework Directive GES, both related to "Trends in the amount and composition of litter ingested by marine animals" in the Mediterranean Sea. The study validates the use of the loggerhead turtle as target indicator for monitoring the impact of litter on marine biota and calls for immediate use of this protocol throughout the Mediterranean basin and European Region. Both GES scenarios are relevant worldwide, where sea turtles and marine litter are present, for measuring the impact of ingested plastics and developing policy strategies to reduce it. In the period between 2011 and 2014, 150 loggerhead sea turtles, found dead, were collected from the Italian Coast, West Mediterranean Sea Sub-Region. The presence of marine litter was investigated using a standardized protocol for necropsies and lab analysis. The collected items were subdivided into 4 main categories, namely, IND-Industrial plastic, USE-User plastic, RUB-Non plastic rubbish, POL-Pollutants and 14 sub-categories, to detect local diversity. Eighty-five percent of the individuals considered (n = 120) were found to have ingested an average of 1.3 ± 0.2 g of

  19. Atmospheric occurrence and deposition of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs) in the open Mediterranean Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castro-Jiménez, J; Eisenreich, S J; Ghiani, M; Mariani, G; Skejo, H; Umlauf, G; Wollgast, J; Zaldívar, J M; Berrojalbiz, N; Reuter, H I; Dachs, J

    2010-07-15

    The overall objective of this work is to provide the first evaluation of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs) occurrence and deposition to Mediterranean open seawater. sigma2,3,7,8-PCDD/F air (gas+aerosol) concentrations over the Mediterranean Sea ranged from 60 to 1040 fg m(-3). The highest value (1555 fg m(-3)) was measured in a reference sample taken in the SW Black Sea. No consistent trend regarding the diel cycle of PCDD/Fs was observed. PCDD/Fs transported to the open sea waters from continental areas and across the Atlantic as well as ship emissions may be significant sources to the open Mediterranean. Seawater concentrations in the Mediterranean ranged from 42 to 64 fg L(-1). The sigma2,3,7,8-PCDD/F dry deposition fluxes in the Marmara and Black Seas (210 kg year(-1)) are from 2 to 55 times higher than dry fluxes in the Mediterranean Sea (4-156 kg year(-1)). Analysis of estimated diffusive air-water fluxes and air/water fugacity ratios show that a net volatilization of some PCDD congeners is feasible. However, evidence of a net absorption flux for the rest of PCDD/F is found. When both atmospheric deposition processes are considered together the open Mediterranean Sea is a net sink of PCDD/F, due to the importance of dry deposition fluxes of aerosol-bound PCDDFs.

  20. MidMedPol: Polychaetes from midlittoral rocky shores in Greece and Italy (Mediterranean Sea).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keklikoglou, Kleoniki; Faulwetter, Sarah; Chatzigeorgiou, Giorgos; Badalamenti, Fabio; Kitsos, Militiadis Spyridon; Arvanitidis, Christos

    2013-01-01

    This paper describes a dataset of polychaetes (Annelida) from 14 midlittoral rocky shore sampling sites in Greece and Italy (Mediterranean Sea). The dataset combines the outcome of four different projects studying the hard substrate midlittoral zone in the Mediterranean between 1984 and 2009. Samples were collected by scraping and collecting the organisms from a framed area. The maximal sampling depth was 1.5 m. In total, 123 polychaete species were recorded, five of which are new records for the respective biogeographic sectors of the Mediterranean. The dataset contains 788 occurrence records, fully annotated with all required metadata. These data contribute to the knowledge of a previously very understudied regional habitat, since at present, comprehensive lists of the midlittoral communities in the Mediterranean are provided through only a few, paper-based, studies. This dataset is one of the first electronic data compilations of the Mediterranean midlittoral zone communities and certainly the most comprehensive of its kind, contributing to the ongoing efforts of the Ocean Biogeographic Information System (OBIS) which aims at filling the gaps in our current knowledge of the world's oceans. It is accessible at http://ipt.vliz.be/resource.do?r=mediterraneanpolychaetaintertidal.

  1. MidMedPol: Polychaetes from midlittoral rocky shores in Greece and Italy (Mediterranean Sea)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Abstract This paper describes a dataset of polychaetes (Annelida) from 14 midlittoral rocky shore sampling sites in Greece and Italy (Mediterranean Sea). The dataset combines the outcome of four different projects studying the hard substrate midlittoral zone in the Mediterranean between 1984 and 2009. Samples were collected by scraping and collecting the organisms from a framed area. The maximal sampling depth was 1.5 m. In total, 123 polychaete species were recorded, five of which are new records for the respective biogeographic sectors of the Mediterranean. The dataset contains 788 occurrence records, fully annotated with all required metadata. These data contribute to the knowledge of a previously very understudied regional habitat, since at present, comprehensive lists of the midlittoral communities in the Mediterranean are provided through only a few, paper-based, studies. This dataset is one of the first electronic data compilations of the Mediterranean midlittoral zone communities and certainly the most comprehensive of its kind, contributing to the ongoing efforts of the Ocean Biogeographic Information System (OBIS) which aims at filling the gaps in our current knowledge of the world's oceans. It is accessible at http://ipt.vliz.be/resource.do?r=mediterraneanpolychaetaintertidal. PMID:24723761

  2. MidMedPol: Polychaetes from midlittoral rocky shores in Greece and Italy (Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kleoniki Keklikoglou

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes a dataset of polychaetes (Annelida from 14 midlittoral rocky shore sampling sites in Greece and Italy (Mediterranean Sea. The dataset combines the outcome of four different projects studying the hard substrate midlittoral zone in the Mediterranean between 1984 and 2009. Samples were collected by scraping and collecting the organisms from a framed area. The maximal sampling depth was 1.5 m. In total, 123 polychaete species were recorded, five of which are new records for the respective biogeographic sectors of the Mediterranean. The dataset contains 788 occurrence records, fully annotated with all required metadata. These data contribute to the knowledge of a previously very understudied regional habitat, since at present, comprehensive lists of the midlittoral communities in the Mediterranean are provided through only a few, paper-based, studies. This dataset is one of the first electronic data compilations of the Mediterranean midlittoral zone communities and certainly the most comprehensive of its kind, contributing to the ongoing efforts of the Ocean Biogeographic Information System (OBIS which aims at filling the gaps in our current knowledge of the world's oceans. It is accessible at http://ipt.vliz.be/resource.do?r=mediterraneanpolychaetaintertidal.

  3. First evidence of European eels exiting the Mediterranean Sea during their spawning migration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amilhat, Elsa; Aarestrup, Kim; Faliex, Elisabeth; Simon, Gaël; Westerberg, Håkan; Righton, David

    2016-02-24

    The migration route and the spawning site of the European eel Anguilla anguilla are still uncertain. It has been suggested that the Mediterranean eel stock does not contribute to spawning because there is no evidence of eels leaving the Mediterranean Sea. To test this hypothesis, we equipped eight female silver eels from the south of France with pop-up satellite tags during escapement from coastal waters. Once in deeper water, the eels quickly established diel vertical migration (DVM) between the upper and lower mesopelagic zone. Five tagged eels were taken by predators within the Mediterranean, but two eels reached the Atlantic Ocean after six months and at distances greater than 2000 km from release. These eels ceased their DVM while they negotiated the Gibraltar Strait, and remained in deep water until they reached the Atlantic Ocean, when they recommenced DVM. Our results are the first to show that eels from Mediterranean can cross the Strait of Gibraltar and continue their migration into the Atlantic Ocean. This finding suggests that Mediterranean countries, as for other EU states, have an important role to play in contributing to conservation efforts for the recovery of the European eel stock.

  4. Coralligenous "atolls": discovery of a new morphotype in the Western Mediterranean Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonacorsi, Marina; Pergent-Martini, Christine; Clabaut, Philippe; Pergent, Gérard

    2012-01-01

    Coralligenous habitat and rhodoliths beds are very important in terms of biodiversity in the Mediterranean Sea. During an oceanographic campaign, carried out in northern Cap Corse, new coralligenous structures have been discovered. These structures, never previously identified in the Mediterranean Sea, are named "coralligenous atolls" because of their circular shape. The origin and growth dynamics of these atolls are still unknown but their form does not appear to result from hydrodynamic action and an anthropogenic origin also seems unlikely. However, this kind of shape seems rather closer to that of other circular structures (e.g. pockmarks) the origin of which is related to gaseous emissions. Further studies are needed to confirm this hypothesis through chemical analysis.

  5. Seasonal patterns of wind-induced upwelling/downwelling in the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew Bakun

    2001-09-01

    Full Text Available The historical file of wind observations from maritime weather reports is summarized to identify the characteristic seasonal distributions of wind-induced Ekman upwelling and downwelling in the Mediterranean Sea. Both coastal upwelling/downwelling and wind-stress curl-driven open ocean upwelling/downwelling are treated in a unified description. Vigorous upwelling zones are found in the eastern Aegean Sea, off the west coast of Greece, and in the Gulf of Lyons. The southern coast of the Mediterranean is found to be primarily a downwelling area, although significant coastal upwelling does appear in the Gulf of Sidra during the spring and summer seasons, and along the Algerian coast during summer.

  6. Survival probabilities of loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta estimated from capture-mark-recapture data in the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paolo Casale

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available Survival probabilities of loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta are estimated for the first time in the Mediterranean by analysing 3254 tagging and 134 re-encounter data from this region. Most of these turtles were juveniles found at sea. Re-encounters were live resightings and dead recoveries and data were analysed with Barker’s model, a modified version of the Cormack-Jolly-Seber model which can combine recapture, live resighting and dead recovery data. An annual survival probability of 0.73 (CI 95% = 0.67-0.78; n=3254 was obtained, and should be considered as a conservative estimate due to an unknown, though not negligible, tag loss rate. This study makes a preliminary estimate of the survival probabilities of in-water developmental stages for the Mediterranean population of endangered loggerhead sea turtles and provides the first insights into the magnitude of the suspected human-induced mortality in the region. The model used here for the first time on sea turtles could be used to obtain survival estimates from other data sets with few or no true recaptures but with other types of re-encounter data, which are a common output of tagging programmes involving these wide-ranging animals.

  7. Modelling retention and dispersion mechanisms of bluefin tuna eggs and larvae in the Northwest Mediterranean Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mariani, Patrizio; MacKenzie, Brian; Iudicone, D.

    2010-01-01

    locations of spawning bluefin tuna using hydrographic backtracking procedures; these locations were situated in a major salinity frontal zone and coincided with distributions of an electronically tagged bluefin tuna and commercial bluefin tuna fishing vessels. Moreover, we hypothesized that mesoscale...... processes are responsible for the aggregation and dispersion mechanisms in the area and showed that these processes were significantly correlated to atmospheric forcing processes over the NW Mediterranean Sea. Interannual variations in average summer air temperature can reduce the intensity of ocean...

  8. Sea-level change and projected future flooding along the Egyptian Mediterranean coast

    OpenAIRE

    2015-01-01

    Future sea-level changes along the Mediterranean Egyptian coast (southern Levantine sub-basin) are projected using satellite altimetry data and model simulations. Twenty-one years (1993–2013) of satellite altimetry data, represented by dynamic topography (DT), are examined in light of tide-gauge observations. Current DT changes are examined with respect to five atmospheric/oceanic factors. The qualities of three realizations of the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL) model are examin...

  9. Ocean acidification impacts on nitrogen fixation in the coastal western Mediterranean Sea

    OpenAIRE

    Rees, AP; Turk-Kubo, KA; Al-Moosawi, L; Alliouane, S.; F. Gazeau; Hogan, ME; Zehr, JP

    2016-01-01

    The effects of ocean acidification on nitrogen (N2) fixation rates and on the community composition of N2-fixing microbes (diazotrophs) were examined in coastal waters of the North-Western Mediterranean Sea. Nine experimental mesocosm enclosures of ∼50 m3 each were deployed for 20 days during June-July 2012 in the Bay of Calvi, Corsica, France. Three control mesocosms were maintained under ambient conditions of carbonate chemistry. The remainder were manipulated with CO2 saturated seawater to...

  10. A new morpho-bathymetric map of the Eastern Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mascle, Jean; Brosolo, Laetitia

    2016-04-01

    A new morpho-bathymetric synthesis of the Eastern Mediterranean Sea has been compiled using a digital terrain model (DTM) based on a 100-meter grid. This DTM has been constructed using data provided by several peri-mediterranean Institutes, and collected using various swath bathymetry systems operated by different research vessels. One may estimate that 90% of the seabed extending by water depths higher than 2000m have been mapped using swath systems. The aim of this synthesis is chiefly to illustrate, in detail, the morphological features resulting from the various (sedimentary, tectonic, geochemical, magmatic, etc.) active geological processes operating on the four main physiographic domains, which characterize the Eastern Mediterranean Sea: the Calabria outer arc (Ionian Sea), the Mediterranean Ridge (most of the central basin), the Nile sedimentary cone (off Egypt) and the Eratosthenes seamount (south of Cyprus). For areas not yet covered by swath bathymetric systems the map has been completed by digital data extracted either from GEBCO or from EMODNET DTM files (http://www.gebco.net/data_and_products/gebco_digital_atlas/) (http://www.emodnet-hydrography.eu/). Several artifacts introduced by the use of these files, for example theoccurrences of their grids, can be detected along most of the steep continental slopes not yet mapped in detail, as well as in the southern domain of the Adriatic Sea. Similarly it has not been possible to systematically correct a few, but non-linear, discrepancies in Z values between various DTM files. Such discrepancies result either from the use of data collected by swath systems operating at different frequencies and/or from minor differences in seawater sound velocity corrections.

  11. Single-Species Dominance in a Subsurface Phytoplankton Concentration at a Mediterranean Sea Front

    Science.gov (United States)

    1990-01-01

    light. A the western Mediterranean Sea. Subsequent single diatom species, Thalassiosira partheneia microscopic analysis revealed a gelatinous ...Schrader in gelatinous colonies, represented 98% colony-forming diatom (Thalassiosira par- of the total phytoplankton biomass in the layer theneia Schrader...convergence/divergence regimes semblages are common and the "paradox must also be determined to assess their roles of the plankton " is the norm

  12. New Fisheries-related data from the Mediterranean Sea (April 2015

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P.K. KARACHLE

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available In this second Collective Article with fisheries-related data from the Mediterranean Sea we present the evaluation of bony structures in aging of Barbus tauricus, otolith dimensions-body length relationships for two species (Trachinus draco and Synchiropus phaeton, information on the growth of juvenile Thunnus thynnus and of Ruvettus pretiosus, weight-length relationships for three species (Aulopus fiamentosus, Thunnus thynnus and Tylosurus acus imperialis and data on feeding habits and reproduction of Aulopus fiamentosus.

  13. First record of Taningia danae (Cephalopoda: Octopoteuthidae in the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antoni Quetglas

    2006-03-01

    Full Text Available The capture of a specimen of the oceanic cephalopod Taningia danae Joubin, 1931, caught during a bottom trawl survey carried out off the Algerian coast, is reported for the first time in the Mediterranean Sea. The individual, which was taken at 385-395 m depth, was a juvenile with a 55.6 mm mantle length and age of 132 days. This finding is important as there are few worldwide records of this species.

  14. Seamount physiography and biology in North-East Atlantic and Mediterranean Sea

    OpenAIRE

    Morato, T.; K. Ø. Kvile; Taranto, G. H.; F. Tempera; Narayanaswamy, B.E.; Hebbeln, D.; Menezes, G.; Wienberg, C.; SANTOS, R. S.; T. J. Pitcher

    2012-01-01

    This work aims at characterising the seamount physiography and biology in the OSPAR Convention limits (North-East Atlantic Ocean) and Mediterranean Sea. We first inferred potential abundance, location and morphological characteristics of seamounts, and secondly, summarized the existing biological, geological and oceanographic in-situ research, identifying examples of well-studied seamounts. Our study showed that the seamount population in the OSPAR area (North-East Atlantic) and in Mediterran...

  15. Seamount physiography and biology in the north-east Atlantic and Mediterranean Sea

    OpenAIRE

    Morato, T.; K. Ø. Kvile; Taranto, G. H.; F. Tempera; Narayanaswamy, B.E.; Hebbeln, D.; Menezes, G. M.; Wienberg, C.; SANTOS, R. S.; T. J. Pitcher

    2013-01-01

    This work aims at characterising the seamount physiography and biology in the OSPAR Convention limits (north-east Atlantic Ocean) and Mediterranean Sea. We first inferred potential abundance, location and morphological characteristics of seamounts, and secondly, summarized the existing biological, geological and oceanographic in situ research, identifying examples of well-studied seamounts. Our study showed that the seamount population in the OSPAR area (north-east Atlantic)...

  16. Cloud amount/frequency, NITRATE and other data from ERNST KRENKEL, MUSSON and other platforms in the Mediterranean Sea and Black Sea from 1978-02-11 to 1979-12-20 (NCEI Accession 9000266)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Ocean Station data in this accession was collected in Black Sea and Mediterranean Sea as part of the International Council for the Exploration of Seas (ICES)...

  17. A new alien bryozoan Celleporaria brunnea (Hincks, 1884 in the Aegean Sea (eastern Mediterranean

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ferah Koçak

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available The ascophoran Bryozoa Celleporaria brunnea, a new record for the Mediterranean Sea, was found on Mytilus galloprovincialis collected in the inner part of Izmir Bay (Aegean Sea, Turkey in September 2004. The species was previously reported from the Pacific coast of the United States. Its occurrence in the polluted inner part of Izmir Bay, near Alsancak Harbour, suggests that it has been newly introduced to the area, possibly via ship hulls. The morphological, ecological and zoogeographical characteristics of the species are given and discussed.

  18. Octopus vulgaris (Cuvier, 1797) in the Mediterranean Sea: Genetic Diversity and Population Structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Luca, Daniele; Catanese, Gaetano; Procaccini, Gabriele; Fiorito, Graziano

    2016-01-01

    The common octopus, Octopus vulgaris Cuvier 1797, is a largely exploited cephalopod species in the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean, as well as along the coasts of Africa, Brazil and Japan, where its taxonomic identity is still debated. The assessment of its genetic structure is a pressing need to correctly manage the resource and to avoid overfishing and collapsing of local stocks. Here we analysed genetic variation and population structure of O. vulgaris using thirteen microsatellite loci in seven sampling localities from the Mediterranean Sea and one from the Atlantic Ocean. We also used a DNA barcoding approach by COI gene fragment to understand the phylogenetic relationships among the specimens here investigated and the ones whose sequences are available in literature. Our results reveal high levels of allelic richness and moderate heterozygosity in all samples investigated, and a pronounced differentiation of the Atlantic and Sicilian specimens. This latter aspect seems to support the isolation of the biota within the Strait of Messina. A certain degree of differentiation was detected among the other geographic samples within the Mediterranean Sea, which is more compatible with an island model than isolation by distance. The occurrence of null alleles affected more genetic diversity indices than population structure estimations. This study provides new insights about the genetic diversity and structure of O. vulgaris in the area of interest, which can be used as guidelines for a fisheries management perspective.

  19. Octopus vulgaris (Cuvier, 1797 in the Mediterranean Sea: Genetic Diversity and Population Structure.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniele De Luca

    Full Text Available The common octopus, Octopus vulgaris Cuvier 1797, is a largely exploited cephalopod species in the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean, as well as along the coasts of Africa, Brazil and Japan, where its taxonomic identity is still debated. The assessment of its genetic structure is a pressing need to correctly manage the resource and to avoid overfishing and collapsing of local stocks. Here we analysed genetic variation and population structure of O. vulgaris using thirteen microsatellite loci in seven sampling localities from the Mediterranean Sea and one from the Atlantic Ocean. We also used a DNA barcoding approach by COI gene fragment to understand the phylogenetic relationships among the specimens here investigated and the ones whose sequences are available in literature. Our results reveal high levels of allelic richness and moderate heterozygosity in all samples investigated, and a pronounced differentiation of the Atlantic and Sicilian specimens. This latter aspect seems to support the isolation of the biota within the Strait of Messina. A certain degree of differentiation was detected among the other geographic samples within the Mediterranean Sea, which is more compatible with an island model than isolation by distance. The occurrence of null alleles affected more genetic diversity indices than population structure estimations. This study provides new insights about the genetic diversity and structure of O. vulgaris in the area of interest, which can be used as guidelines for a fisheries management perspective.

  20. Torrential precipitations on the Spanish east coast: The role of the Mediterranean sea surface temperature

    Science.gov (United States)

    Millán, M.; Estrela, M. J.; Caselles, V.

    Floods constitute one of the most important natural risks on the Spanish Mediterranean coast. Although it is very difficult to avoid them, a correct understanding of their principal cause, which is torrential rain, can facilitate their prediction and in this way avoid, at least partially, their catastrophic effects (both loss of human lives and material damage). The work presented here is part of a more extensive study underway in the CEAM (Centro de Estudios Ambientales del Mediterráneo). Its objective is the analysis of the conditions that produce torrential precipitations. These can be explained by the hypothesis of the Back Door Front, a mechanism which on its own permits the development of a potentially unstable mass above the Mediterranean sea. Among the different factors that are valued in this hypothesis, the Sea Surface Temperature is considered to play an important role. It is studied by means of satellite images since this is the only technique that permits a synoptic view of this parameter. NOAH satellite images have been used, applying the split-window operative technique. This work presents initial results that confirm the importance of the Sea Surface Temperature (SST) as a moisture source in the Mediterranean cyclogenesis.

  1. Assessment of butyltin and phenyltin pollution in the sea mullet, Mugil cephalus, along the Moroccan and Spanish coasts (Mediterranean Sea).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hassani, L Hajjaj; Frenich, A Garrido; Benajiba, M H; Rodríguez, M J González; Vidal, J L Martínez; Debdoubi, A

    2006-11-01

    Levels of three butyltin (BTs) compounds, monobutyltin (MBT), dibutyltin (DBT) and tributyltin (TBT), and three phenyltin (PTs) compounds, monophenyltin (MPhT), diphenyltin (DPhT), and triphenyltin (TPhT), were determined in the sea mullet, Mugil cephalus, collected along the northern Mediterranean coast of Morocco, and the south Mediterranean coast of Spain. Also, sediment samples from the Guadalquivir River (Spain) near to its mouth in the Mediterranean Sea were analysed. TBT and TPhT were the predominant compounds in the analyzed samples, and TBT concentrations were higher in liver than in muscle. In general, the total content of BTs in these samples was higher than PT levels. In the Moroccan coast, the highest value of BTs (18.00 mg/Kg wet weight) was found in the west harbour of the Tangier site, while the lowest concentration (0.01 mg/Kg wet weight) was detected in the Oued Laoue site. Concerning PTs compounds, the highest value (4.00 mg/Kg wet weight) was found in the harbour of the M'diq Site and the lowest value (0.01 mg/Kg wet weight) was detected in the Oued Laoue site. On the other hand, organotin (OT) residues were not detected in the water samples of the Spanish coast although TBT was identified in four of the nine sediment samples from the Guadalquivir River at concentrations between 15.45 and 245.07 mg/Kg wet weight.

  2. A New Analysis of the Lions in The Old Man and the Sea%群狮与寡人——《老人与海》寓意新解

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    黄菁

    2015-01-01

    This paper centers on the discussion of the connotative meaning of lions in The Old Man and the Sea. There have been some researches analyzing the symbolic meaning of the lions. These researchers mainly hold that lions symbolize the strength, the youth, the will-power, the transcendence of spirit, the masculinity, and Hemingway' s foresight in writing. But, it should be noticed that lions in the novel mean much more. This paper, taking the biological features and life habits of lions into consideration, endeavors to work out more connotative meanings of the lions in the novel by arguing that they represent the old man' s desire for social interaction.%主要讨论海明威的作品《老人与海》中狮子这一意象的寓意. 已经有许多学者探讨过书中狮子的象征意义. 在众多的见解中,人们认为作品中的狮子象征力与美、青春活力、意志力量、精神超越、男子气概以及作者海明威的写作远见等. 但经过对原著的文本细读,不难发现狮子的寓意远不止这些,本文从狮子的生物特征的角度,尽力挖掘狮子的另一层蕴义,即它们象征着作品中老人对社交和陪伴的渴望.

  3. Assessing the role of submarine groundwater discharge as a source of Sr to the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trezzi, Giada; Garcia-Orellana, Jordi; Rodellas, Valentí; Masqué, Pere; Garcia-Solsona, Ester; Andersson, Per S.

    2017-03-01

    Submarine groundwater discharge (SGD) has been identified as an important source of Sr to the ocean and the SGD-driven Sr flux to the global ocean has been recently re-evaluated (Beck et al., 2013). However, the uncertainty of this value is still high because of the uncertainties related to the determination of SGD flow rates and the paucity of 87Sr/86Sr data in SGD end-members. As carbonates have high Sr concentrations and are subjected to intense heightened weathering, they might significantly influence the SGD input of Sr to the ocean. Here we present data on Sr concentrations and 87Sr/86Sr ratios in three carbonate dominated sites of the western area of the Mediterranean Sea, a semi-enclosed basin characterized by abundant coastal carbonates. The 87Sr/86Sr ratios in groundwater were lower compared to modern seawater (∼0.70916), as expected for areas dominated by carbonate lithologies. Concentrations of Sr and 87Sr/86Sr ratios in groundwater showed conservative mixing in the studied subterranean estuaries. By using SGD flow rates reported in the literature for the study areas, a flow-weighted fresh SGD end-member characterized by a Sr concentration of 27-30 μM and a 87Sr/86Sr ratio of 0.707834-0.708020 was calculated for the eastern coast of the Iberian Peninsula. Integrating these Sr data with literature data (i.e. values of Sr concentration and 87Sr/86Sr ratio from other lithologies as well as SGD flow rates), we also calculated the fresh SGD-driven Sr flux to the entire Mediterranean Sea, obtaining a value of (0.34-0.83)·109 mol y-1, with a 87Sr/86Sr of 0.7081-0.7086. Thus, for the entire Mediterranean basin, SGD is globally a source of Sr less radiogenic compared to seawater. The SGD Sr flux to the Mediterranean Sea represents 5-6% of the SGD Sr flux to the global ocean and the Mediterranean SGD end-member has higher Sr concentration (5-12 μM) than the global SGD end-member (2.9 μM). This confirms the significant role of carbonate lithologies on SGD

  4. Occurrence, sources and transport pathways of natural and anthropogenic hydrocarbons in deep-sea sediments of the eastern Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Parinos

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Surface sediments collected from deep basins (1018–4087 m depth of the eastern Mediterranean Sea (Ionian Sea, southern Aegean Sea and northwestern Levantine Sea were analyzed for aliphatic and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons as tracers of natural and anthropogenic inputs. Concentrations of total aliphatic hydrocarbons, n-alkanes and the unresolved complex mixture (UCM of aliphatic hydrocarbons varied significantly, ranging from 1.34 to 49.2 μg g−1, 145 to 4810 ng g−1 and 0.73 to 36.7 μg g−1, respectively, while concentrations of total polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs ranged between 11.6 and 223 ng g−1. Molecular profiles of determined hydrocarbons reflect a mixed contribution from both natural and anthropogenic sources in deep-sea sediments of the eastern Mediterranean Sea, i.e., terrestrial plant waxes, degraded petroleum products, unburned fossil fuels and combustion of grass, wood and coal. Hydrocarbon mixtures display significant variability amongst sub-regions, reflecting differences in the relative importance of inputs from various sources and phase associations/transport pathways of individual hydrocarbons that impact on their overall distribution and fate. Hydrocarbon concentrations correlated significantly with the organic carbon content of sediments, indicating that the latter exerts an important control on their transport and ultimate accumulation in deep basins. Additionally, water masses' circulation characteristics also seem to influence the regional features and distribution patterns of hydrocarbons. Our findings highlight the role of deep basins/canyons as repositories of both natural and anthropogenic chemical species.

  5. Structure, functioning, and cumulative stressors of Mediterranean deep-sea ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tecchio, Samuele; Coll, Marta; Sardà, Francisco

    2015-06-01

    Environmental stressors, such as climate fluctuations, and anthropogenic stressors, such as fishing, are of major concern for the management of deep-sea ecosystems. Deep-water habitats are limited by primary productivity and are mainly dependent on the vertical input of organic matter from the surface. Global change over the latest decades is imparting variations in primary productivity levels across oceans, and thus it has an impact on the amount of organic matter landing on the deep seafloor. In addition, anthropogenic impacts are now reaching the deep ocean. The Mediterranean Sea, the largest enclosed basin on the planet, is not an exception. However, ecosystem-level studies of response to varying food input and anthropogenic stressors on deep-sea ecosystems are still scant. We present here a comparative ecological network analysis of three food webs of the deep Mediterranean Sea, with contrasting trophic structure. After modelling the flows of these food webs with the Ecopath with Ecosim approach, we compared indicators of network structure and functioning. We then developed temporal dynamic simulations varying the organic matter input to evaluate its potential effect. Results show that, following the west-to-east gradient in the Mediterranean Sea of marine snow input, organic matter recycling increases, net production decreases to negative values and trophic organisation is overall reduced. The levels of food-web activity followed the gradient of organic matter availability at the seafloor, confirming that deep-water ecosystems directly depend on marine snow and are therefore influenced by variations of energy input, such as climate-driven changes. In addition, simulations of varying marine snow arrival at the seafloor, combined with the hypothesis of a possible fishery expansion on the lower continental slope in the western basin, evidence that the trawling fishery may pose an impact which could be an order of magnitude stronger than a climate

  6. Spatio-temporal variability of phytoplankton dimensional classes in the Mediterranean Sea from satellite data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sammartino, Michela; Di Cicco, Annalisa; Marullo, Salvatore; Santoleri, Rosalia

    2016-04-01

    Phytoplankton contributes to fix half of the carbon dioxide released on Earth, becoming a key component not only in the carbon cycle, but also in several biogeochemical cycles. It is involved in the control of greenhouse gases and, consequently, in the effect of climate change on marine system. Therefore, phytoplankton is often considered one of the most common bio-indicator for any environmental changes, which, in turn, can affect the algal community composition and structure. The alteration of the biological, physical and chemical conditions in the ocean can be reflected in the algal assemblage structure, in terms of variation of dominant size class and taxonomic composition. In this work, the seasonal and year-to-year variability of the phytoplankton size class (PSC) spatial distribution has been examined in the Mediterranean Sea using ten year of satellite observations. The estimation of PSCs from space is based on relationship between chlorophyll a (Chl a) and diagnostic pigments that should be verified at regional scales. Our analysis shows that the Mediterranean pigments ratios differs from the global ones; therefore, we regionalized the mathematical relation existing between the Chl a and the diagnostic pigments, used in the in situ PSC identification. This regionally tuned relation allowed to improve the estimation of PSCs from space by reducing the observed bias between modelled and measured PSCs. The analysis of PSC satellite time series allowed, for the first time, to have a quantitative description of the seasonal and inter-annual variability of the spatial distribution of the algal community in the Mediterranean Sea. The results demonstrated that the pico-phytoplankton contributes with high values to the total Chl a, especially in summer and in ultra-oligotrophic environments, such as the Levantine basin. Micro-phytoplankton contribution results high during spring bloom period in offshore areas, characterized by a strong water mixing; while, in

  7. Simulation of aerosol chemical compositions in the Western Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chrit, Mounir; Kata Sartelet, Karine; Sciare, Jean; Marchand, Nicolas; Pey, Jorge; Sellegri, Karine

    2016-04-01

    This work aims at evaluating the chemical transport model (CTM) Polair3d of the air-quality modelling platform Polyphemus during the ChArMex summer campaigns of 2013, using ground-based measurements performed at ERSA (Cape Corsica, France), and at determining the processes controlling organic aerosol concentrations at ERSA. Simulations are compared to measurements for concentrations of both organic and inorganic species, as well as the ratio of biogenic versus anthropogenic particles, and organic aerosol properties (oxidation state). For inorganics, the concentrations of sulphate, sodium, chloride, ammonium and nitrate are compared to measurements. Non-sea-salt sulphate and ammonium concentrations are well reproduced by the model. However, because of the geographic location of the measurement station at Cape Corsica which undergoes strong wind velocities and sea effects, sea-salt sulphate, sodium, chloride and nitrate concentrations are strongly influenced by the parameterizations used for sea-salt emissions. Different parameterizations are compared and a parameterization is chosen after comparison to sodium measurements. For organics, the concentrations are well modelled when compared to experimental values. Anthropogenic particles are influenced by emission of semi-volatile organic compounds (SVOC). Measurements allow us to refine the estimation of those emissions, which are currently missing in emission inventories. Although concentrations of biogenic particles are well simulated, the organic chemical compounds are not enough oxidised in the model. The observed oxidation state of organics shows that the oligomerisation of pinonaldehyde was over-estimated in Polyphemus. To improve the oxidation property of organics, the formation of extremely low volatile organic compounds from autoxidation of monoterpenes is added to Polyphemus, using recently published data from chamber experiments. These chemical compounds are highly oxygenated and are formed rapidly, as first

  8. Tracers confirm downward mixing of Tyrrhenian Sea upper waters associated with the Eastern Mediterranean Transient

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W. Roether

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Observations of tritium and 3He in the Tyrrhenian Sea, 1987–2009, confirm the enhanced vertical mixing of intermediate waters into the deep waters that has been noted and associated with the Eastern Mediterranean Transient in previous studies. Our evidence for the mixing rests on increasing tracer concentrations in the Tyrrhenian deep waters, accompanied by decreases in the upper waters, which are supplied from the Eastern Mediterranean. The downward transfer is particularly evident between 1987 and 1997. Later on, information partly rests on increasing tritium-3He ages; here we correct the observed 3He for contributions released from the ocean floor. The Tyrrhenian tracer distributions are fully compatible with data upstream of the Sicily Strait and in the Western Mediterranean. The tracer data show that mixing reached to the bottom and confirm a cyclonic nature of the deep water circulation in the Tyrrhenian. They furthermore indicate that horizontal homogenization of the deep waters occurs on a time scale of roughly 5 years. Various features point to a reduced impact of Western Mediterranean Deep Water (WMDW in the Tyrrhenian during the enhanced-mixing period. This is an important finding because it implies less upward mixing of WMDW, which has been named a major process to enable the WMDW to leave the Mediterranean via the Gibraltar Strait. On the other hand, the TDW outflow for several years represented a major influx of enhanced salinity and density waters into the deep-water range of the Western Mediterranean.

  9. Population genetic structure of North Atlantic, Mediterranean Sea and Sea of Cortez fin whales, Balaenoptera physalus (Linnaeus 1758) : Analysis of mitochondrial and nuclear loci

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bérubé, Martine; Aguilar, Alex; Dendanto, Dan; Larsen, Finn; Notarbartolo di Sciara, Guiseppe; Sears, Richard; Sigurjónsson8, Johan; Urban-R, Jorge; Palsboll, Per

    1998-01-01

    Samples were collected from 407 fin whales, Balaenoptera physalus, at four North Atlantic and one Mediterranean Sea summer feeding area as well as the Sea of Cortez in the Pacific Ocean. For each sample, the sex, the sequence of the first 288 nucleotides of the mitochondrial (mt) control region and

  10. The wind and thermally driven circulation of the eastern Mediterranean Sea. Part II: the Baroclinic case

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malanotte-Rizzoli, Paola; Bergamasco, Andrea

    1991-04-01

    anticyclonic ones in summer, according to the vorticity input by the wind. When surface thermal forcing is included, the winter-to-summer differences become very small and the yearly pattern is dominant. The second important result is that the intercomparisons of the various numerical experiments in which each driving mechanism is studied in isolation from the others allows us to classify unambiguously the three forcing mechanisms in order of relative importance in driving the circulation in the different sub-basins of the eastern Mediterranean. Specifically, for the Ionian Sea and Sea of Crete the dominant forcing is the inflow at the Straits of Sicily while for the Levantine Sea thermohaline fluxes are the main driving function. The wind-stress forcing induces a seasonal fluctuation only in the meandering path of the Atlantic jet entering the Ionian Sea through the Sicily Straits. We finally carry out a 'central experiment', the most realistic one in which all forcing functions drive the circulation that we compare quantitatively with other model results and qualitatively with observations. Major features can be recognized and are shown to be persistent all year long. These features are also found in the dynamic heights of the general hydrographic surveys of the Physical Oceanography of the Eastern Mediterranean (POEM) programme. The only POEM feature not reproduced by the model, an intense anticyclonic region in the south eastern Levantine, may be attributed to errors and specifically underestimates, of the available thermal fluxes whose effect is partially overcome by the wind-stress forcing. This anticyclonic cell is in fact obtained when the model is driven by the thermal fluxes alone. Overall, the model results compare well with the observational evidence provided by the POEM surveys and the thermohaline vertical circulation cell reproduced by the model is consistent with the preliminary results of the transient-tracer survey POEM-V-87. Finally, many of the persistent

  11. Killer whales attack on South American sea lion associated with a fishing vessel: predator and prey tactics Ataque de orcas a un lobo marino sudamericano asociado a un barco pesquero: tácticas del predador y la presa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Florencia Grandi

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Interactions between killer whales and sea lions are widely known. This work describes the predator-prey behaviour of killer whales and South American sea lion associated with a trawling fishery. In Argentina the predatory behaviours of killer whales and anti-predatory behaviours of South American sea lions have been described from costal based observations, but predator-prey behaviour of these species is poorly known at open waters. Here we describe a killer whale group attack on an individual sea lion, using a video recorded from a trawling vessel and an interview of the ship captain. This predator-prey behaviour represents an example of the complexity of interactions between marine mammals and fisheries along the Patagonian coast.Las interacciones entre orcas y lobos marinos son ampliamente conocidas. Este trabajo describe el comportamiento predador-presa entre orcas y un lobo marino sudamericano asociados a un barco pesquero de arrastre. Particularmente en Argentina el comportamiento predatorio de las orcas y el anti-predatorio de los lobos marinos comunes fueron descriptos mediante observaciones costeras, pero se sabe poco sobre el comportamiento de estas especies en aguas abiertas. En este trabajo, a partir de un video grabado desde un barco de pesca arrastrero, junto con la entrevista del capitán del barco, se describe cómo un grupo de orcas ataca a un lobo marino Sudamericano. Este comportamiento predador-presa representa un ejemplo sobre la complejidad de las interacciones entre mamíferos marinos y las pesquerías a lo largo de la costa patagónica.

  12. KM3NeT: towards a km3-scale neutrino telescope in the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Km3NeT Consortium; Distefano, C.; KM3NeT Consortium

    2009-05-01

    The observation of high energy neutrinos (≳1 TeV) from astrophysical sources would substantially improve our knowledge and understanding of the non-thermal processes in these sources, and would in particular pinpoint the accelerators of cosmic rays. Theoretical predictions indicate that km3-scale detectors are needed to detect astrophysical neutrino fluxes. That is the reason why the three Mediterranean experiments, ANTARES, NEMO and NESTOR are working together on preparing KM3NeT, a large deep-sea neutrino telescope in the Mediterranean Sea which will survey a large part of the Galactic disc, including the Galactic Centre. It will complement the IceCube telescope currently under construction at the South Pole. Furthermore, the improved optical properties of sea water, compared to Antarctic ice, will allow for a better angular resolution and hence a better background rejection. The construction of this detector will require the solution of technological problems common to many deep submarine installations, and will help paving the way for other deep-sea research facilities. In this paper the major activities and the status of KM3NeT are presented.

  13. Mesozooplankton biomass and abundance in Cyprus coastal waters and comparison with the Aegean Sea (eastern Mediterranean

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. C.S. HANNIDES

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Here we conduct the first comprehensive assessment of mesozooplankton abundance, biomass, and taxa composition in Cyprus coastal waters (Levantine Sea.  Mesozooplankton abundance and biomass sampled at several locations around the island ranged from 153 – 498 individuals m-3 and 0.7 – 5.2 mg dry weight m-3, respectively, with significantly larger biomass observed in winter-early spring (March than in summer (September.  The community was dominated by calanoid and cyclopoid copepods throughout the year (80% of total numbers, with higher abundances of predatory taxa (chaetognaths and medusae in winter and cladocerans in summer.  Overall, we find that coastal mesozooplankton communities around Cyprus appear to be more similar to communities in offshore waters or those around the island of Rhodes than to communities along the mainland Levantine coast.  We further highlight regional differences in the eastern Mediterranean by comparing our data with mesozooplankton in the western Aegean (Saronikos Gulf and northeastern Aegean Sea (NEA.  Distinct spatial differences were observed, for example anthropogenic influences in the Saronikos Gulf and the outflow of Modified Black Sea Water in the NEA drove generally greater biomass and abundance in these regions.  Overall, our comparison supports the concept of a latitudinal gradient in oligotrophy in the eastern Mediterranean, with ultra-oligotrophic conditions found in the Levantine Sea.

  14. Roseobacter-Like Bacteria in Red and Mediterranean Sea Aerobic Anoxygenic Photosynthetic Populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oz, Aia; Sabehi, Gazalah; Koblízek, Michal; Massana, Ramon; Béjà, Oded

    2005-01-01

    Bacteriochlorophyll a-containing aerobic anoxygenic phototrophs (AAnP) have been proposed to account for up to 11% of the total surface water microbial community and to potentially have great ecological importance in the world's oceans. Recently, environmental and genomic data based on analysis of the pufM gene identified the existence of α-proteobacteria as well as possible γ-like proteobacteria among AAnP in the Pacific Ocean. Here we report on analyses of environmental samples from the Red and Mediterranean Seas by using pufM as well as the bchX and bchL genes as molecular markers. The majority of photosynthesis genes retrieved from these seas were related to Roseobacter-like AAnP sequences. Furthermore, the sequence of a novel photosynthetic operon organization from an uncultured Roseobacter-like bacterial artificial chromosome retrieved from the Red Sea is described. The data show the presence of Roseobacter-like bacteria in Red and Mediterranean Sea AAnP populations in the seasons analyzed. PMID:15640208

  15. Spatial Gradients in Trace Metal Concentrations in the Surface Microlayer of the Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonio eTovar-Sanchez

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The relationship between dust deposition and surface water metal concentrations is poorly understood. Dissolution, solubility, and partitioning reactions of trace metals from dust particles are governed by complex chemical, biological, and physical processes occurring in the surface ocean. Despite that, the role of the sea surface microlayer (SML, a thin, but fundamental component modulating the air-sea exchange of materials has not been properly evaluated. Our study revealed that the SML of the Mediterranean Sea is enriched with bioactive trace metals (i.e., Cd, Co, Cu and Fe, ranging from 8 (for Cd to 1000 (for Fe times higher than the dissolved metal pool in the underlying water column. The highest enrichments were spatially correlated with the atmospheric deposition of mineral particles. Our mass balance results suggest that the SML in the Mediterranean Sea contains about 2 tonnes of Fe. However, we did not detect any trends between the concentrations of metals in SML with the subsurface water concentrations and biomass distributions. These findings suggest that future studies are needed to quantify the rate of metal exchange between the SML and the bioavailable pool and that the SML should be considered to better understand the effect of atmospheric inputs on the biogeochemistry of trace metals in the ocean.

  16. Uncommon pelagic and deep-sea cephalopods in the Mediterranean: new data and literature review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. QUETGLAS

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Compared to their shelf-living relatives, the biology and ecology of most pelagic and deep-sea cephalopods is currently rather unknown owing to the difficulties to catch them. To cover the lack of information on these cephalopods, scientists have to make use of the limited and fragmentary data gathered from different sources such as sporadic captures, strandings or stomach contents of their predators. Here, we give some biological and ecological information on eleven uncommon pelagic and deep-sea cephalopods collected during more than fifteen years of fisheries surveys in the western Mediterranean Sea. The cephalopods investigated include two epipelagic octopuses (Ocythoe tuberculata and Tremoctopus violaceus, one deep-sea cirrate octopus (Opisthoteuthis calypso, the sepiolid Stoloteuthis leucoptera and seven teuthoid species inhabiting preferentially mesopelagic and bathypelagic waters (Abraliopsis morisii, Ancistrocheirus lesueurii, Brachioteuthis riisei, Chiroteuthis veranyi, Chtenopteryx sicula, Onychoteuthis banksii and Taonius pavo. Although all of these species are either cosmopolitan or present a wide distribution in other oceans, they are nevertheless relatively rare in catches, and therefore remain poorly known. The finding of T. pavo represents the first record of this cephalopod in the Mediterranean.

  17. Deep-sea tsunami deposits triggered by the explosion of Santorini (3500 y BP), eastern Mediterranean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cita, M. B.; Aloisi, G.

    2000-09-01

    The collapse of the Santorini caldera after the catastrophic eruption of the Bronze Age, 3500 y BP, caused a tsunami wave that had catastrophic effects in the Ionian basin, including its deepest parts. Pelagic turbidites of local origin were deposited on the bottom of small perched basins of the Southern Calabrian, Western and Central Mediterranean Ridges (type A homogenite) whereas a megaturbidite of distal origin, presumably triggered by the tsunami wave hitting the shoreline of the Sirte Gulf, was deposited on the Ionian and Sirte Abyssal Plains, extending eastwards as far as the Western Herodotous Trough depositing a thick, acoustically transparent layer (type B homogenite). Three core transects crossing the deformation front of the Mediterranean Ridge are presented and discussed. A fourth transect of giant piston cores was collected on the abyssal plains located to the south of the Mediterranean Ridge. All those to the west of the collision zone contain the Holocene homogenite with a thickness in excess of 20 m, whereas the cores taken from the Herodotous Abyssal Plain east of the collision zone are devoid of the homogenite. Sedimentological analyses were performed on the only giant core that penetrated the sandy base of the homogenite and the underlying pelagic sediments of late Pleistocene (last glacial) age. The African provenance of this typical type B homogenite is corroborated by shallow-water fauna derived from the North African shelf. No sedimentological characteristics peculiar to tsunamiites are observed in the deep-sea homogenite of the eastern Mediterranean.

  18. Characterization of a Strain of Fukuyoa paulensis (Dinophyceae) from the Western Mediterranean Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laza-Martínez, Aitor; David, Helena; Riobó, Pilar; Miguel, Irati; Orive, Emma

    2016-07-01

    A single cell of the dinoflagellate genus Fukuyoa was isolated from the island of Formentera (Balearic Islands, west Mediterranean Sea), cultured, and characterized by morphological and molecular methods and toxin analyses. This is the first report of the Gambierdiscus lineage (genera Fukuyoa and Gambierdiscus) from the western Mediterranean Sea, which is cooler than its eastern basin. Molecular analyses revealed that the Mediterranean strain belongs to F. paulensis and that it bears LSU rDNA sequences identical to New Zealand, Australian, and Brazilian strains. It also shared an identical sequence of the more variable ITS-rDNA with the Brazilian strain. Toxin analyses showed the presence of maitotoxin, 54-deoxyCTX1B, and gambieric acid A. This is the first observation of the two latter compounds in a Fukuyoa strain. Therefore, both Gambierdiscus and Fukuyoa should be considered when as contributing to ciguatera fish poisoning. Different strains of Fukuyoa form a complex of morphologically cryptic lineages where F. paulensis stands as the most distantly related nominal species. The comparison of the ITS2 secondary structures revealed the absence of CBCs among strains. The study of the morphological and molecular traits depicted an unresolved taxonomic scenario impacted by the low strains sampling.

  19. The timing of Mediterranean sapropel deposition relative to insolation, sea-level and African monsoon changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grant, K. M.; Grimm, R.; Mikolajewicz, U.; Marino, G.; Ziegler, M.; Rohling, E. J.

    2016-05-01

    The Mediterranean basin is sensitive to global sea-level changes and African monsoon variability on orbital timescales. Both of these processes are thought to be important to the deposition of organic-rich sediment layers or 'sapropels' throughout the eastern Mediterranean, yet their relative influences remain ambiguous. A related issue is that an assumed 3-kyr lag between boreal insolation maxima and sapropel mid-points remains to be tested. Here we present new geochemical and ice-volume-corrected planktonic foraminiferal stable isotope records for sapropels S1 (Holocene), S3, S4, and S5 (Marine Isotope Stage 5) in core LC21 from the southern Aegean Sea. The records have a radiometrically constrained chronology that has already been synchronised with the Red Sea relative sea-level record, and this allows detailed examination of the timing of sapropel deposition relative to insolation, sea-level, and African monsoon changes. We find that sapropel onset was near-synchronous with monsoon run-off into the eastern Mediterranean, but that insolation-sapropel/monsoon phasings were not systematic through the last glacial cycle. These latter phasings instead appear to relate to sea-level changes. We propose that persistent meltwater discharges into the North Atlantic (e.g., at glacial terminations) modified the timing of sapropel deposition by delaying the timing of peak African monsoon run-off. These observations may reconcile apparent model-data offsets with respect to the orbital pacing of the African monsoon. Our observations also imply that the previous assumption of a systematic 3-kyr lag between insolation maxima and sapropel midpoints may lead to overestimated insolation-sapropel phasings. Finally, we surmise that both sea-level rise and monsoon run-off contributed to surface-water buoyancy changes at times of sapropel deposition, and their relative influences differed per sapropel case, depending on their magnitudes. Sea-level rise was clearly important for

  20. Annual Acoustic Presence of Fin Whale (Balaenoptera physalus) Offshore Eastern Sicily, Central Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sciacca, Virginia; Caruso, Francesco; Beranzoli, Laura; Chierici, Francesco; De Domenico, Emilio; Embriaco, Davide; Favali, Paolo; Giovanetti, Gabriele; Larosa, Giuseppina; Marinaro, Giuditta; Papale, Elena; Pavan, Gianni; Pellegrino, Carmelo; Pulvirenti, Sara; Simeone, Francesco; Viola, Salvatore; Riccobene, Giorgio

    2015-01-01

    In recent years, an increasing number of surveys have definitively confirmed the seasonal presence of fin whales (Balaenoptera physalus) in highly productive regions of the Mediterranean Sea. Despite this, very little is yet known about the routes that the species seasonally follows within the Mediterranean basin and, particularly, in the Ionian area. The present study assesses for the first time fin whale acoustic presence offshore Eastern Sicily (Ionian Sea), throughout the processing of about 10 months of continuous acoustic monitoring. The recording of fin whale vocalizations was made possible by the cabled deep-sea multidisciplinary observatory, “NEMO-SN1”, deployed 25 km off the Catania harbor at a depth of about 2,100 meters. NEMO-SN1 is an operational node of the European Multidisciplinary Seafloor and water-column Observatory (EMSO) Research Infrastructure. The observatory was equipped with a low-frequency hydrophone (bandwidth: 0.05 Hz–1 kHz, sampling rate: 2 kHz) which continuously acquired data from July 2012 to May 2013. About 7,200 hours of acoustic data were analyzed by means of spectrogram display. Calls with the typical structure and patterns associated to the Mediterranean fin whale population were identified and monitored in the area for the first time. Furthermore, a background noise analysis within the fin whale communication frequency band (17.9–22.5 Hz) was conducted to investigate possible detection-masking effects. The study confirms the hypothesis that fin whales are present in the Ionian Sea throughout all seasons, with peaks in call detection rate during spring and summer months. The analysis also demonstrates that calls were more frequently detected in low background noise conditions. Further analysis will be performed to understand whether observed levels of noise limit the acoustic detection of the fin whales vocalizations, or whether the animals vocalize less in the presence of high background noise. PMID:26581104

  1. Dissolved inorganic carbon, alkalinity, temperature, salinity and other variables collected from discrete sample and profile observations using CTD, bottle and other instruments from METEOR in the Aegean Sea, Mediterranean Sea and others from 2001-10-18 to 2001-11-11 (NODC Accession 0084620)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — NCEI Accession 0084620 includes discrete sample and profile data collected from METEOR in the Aegean Sea, Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean Sea - Eastern Basin,...

  2. Mediterranean sea eddy kinetic energy variability from 11 years of altimetric data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pujol, M.-I.; Larnicol, G.

    2005-12-01

    The eddy kinetic energy (EKE) variability of the Mediterranean Sea over eleven years (1993-2003) was studied using merged (T/P, Jason, ERS and Envisat) altimetric data. Special efforts were made to improve the data selection and the mapping procedure. The introduction of the Mean Dynamic Topography [Rio M.-H., Poulain P.-M., Pascual A., Mauri E., Larnico G., 2005, "A mean dynamic topography of the Mediterranean Sea computed from altimetric data and in situ measurements", submitted to J. Mar. Syst. (Liège Colloquium special issue).] made it possible to derive the absolute dynamic topography. Thus, an improved and more complete data set was obtained, which enabled previous studies based on altimetric data ([Iudicone D., Santoreli R., Marullo S., Gerosa P., 1998, "Sea level variability and surface eddy statistics in the Mediterranean Sea from TOPEX/POSEIDON data", J. Geoph. Res. 103 (C2), 2995-3011.]; [Ayoub N., Le Traon P.-Y., De Mey P., 1998, "A description of the Mediterranean surface circulation from combined ERS-1 and TOPEX/POSEIDON altimetric data", J. Mar. Syst. 18 (1-3), 3-40.]; [Larnicol G., Le Traon P.-Y., Ayoub N., De Mey P., 1995, "Mean sea level and surface circulation variability of the Mediterranean Sea from 2 years of TOPEX/POSEIDON altimetry ", J. Geoph. Res. 100 (C12), 25,163-25,177.]; [Larnicol G., Ayoub N., Le Traon P.-Y., 2002, "Major changes in Mediterranean Sea level variability from 7 years of TOPES/Poseidon and ERS-1/2 data", J. Mar. Syst. 33-34, 63-89.] to be enhanced. In particular, for the first time a relatively accurate description of the mean EKE distribution in the Mediterranean Sea could be provided. The mean EKE structure is the consequence of the superposition of different variability components. As previously described in other studies, mesoscale, seasonal and interannual components play a key role in this variability, but the contribution of long-term decadal signals, as well as sporadic events, are also important. In addition, a

  3. Multiproxy assessment of Holocene relative sea-level changes in the western Mediterranean: sea-level variability and improvements in the definition of the isostatic signal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vacchi, Matteo; Rovere, Alessio; Marriner, Nick; Morhange, Christophe; Spada, Giorgio; Fontana, Alessandro

    2016-04-01

    After the review of 918 radiocarbon dated Relative Sea-Level (RSL) data-points we present here the first quality-controlled database constraining the Holocene sea-level histories of the western Mediterranean Sea (Spain, France, Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Malta and Tunisia). We reviewed and standardized the geological RSL data-points using a new multi-proxy methodology based on: (1) modern taxa assemblages in Mediterranean lagoons and marshes; (2) beachrock characteristics (cement fabric and chemistry, sedimentary structures); and (3) the modern distribution of Mediterranean fixed biological indicators. These RSL data-points were coupled with the large number of archaeological RSL indicators available for the western Mediterranean. We assessed the spatial variability of RSL histories for 22 regions and compared these with the ICE-5G VM2 GIA model. In the western Mediterranean, RSL rose continuously for the whole Holocene with a sudden slowdown at ~7.5 ka BP and a further deceleration during the last ~4.0 ka BP, after which time observed RSL changes are mainly related to variability in isostatic adjustment. The sole exception is southern Tunisia, where data show evidence of a mid-Holocene high-stand compatible with the isostatic impacts of the melting history of the remote Antarctic ice sheet. Our results indicate that late-Holocene sea-level rise was significantly slower than the current one. First estimates of GIA contribution indicate that, at least in the northwestern sector, it accounts at least for the 25-30% of the ongoing sea-level rise recorded by Mediterranean tidal gauges. Such contribution is less constrained at lower latitudes due to the lower quality of the late Holocene index points. Future applications of spatio-temporal statistical techniques are required to better quantify the gradient of the isostatic contribution and to provide improved context for the assessment of 20th century acceleration of Mediterranean sea-level rise.

  4. Major changes in Mediterranean Sea level variability from 7 years of TOPEX/Poseidon and ERS-1/2 data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larnicol, G.; Ayoub, N.; Le Traon, P. Y.

    2002-06-01

    Seven years of combined maps of TOPEX/Poseidon (T/P) and ERS-1/2 altimeter data are used to describe the surface circulation variability in the Mediterranean Sea. As described in the past, the Mediterranean Sea level variability is a complex combination of a wide range of spatial and temporal scales. However, this paper gives an improved estimation of sea level statistics (rms, annual, semiannual cycle). Moreover, the longer period (1993-1999) and the merging of T/P and ERS-1/2 altimeter data allows us to observe with a good accuracy the major changes that occurred in the Mediterranean Sea and, in particular, at basin and sub-basin scales. First, important interannual signals were found in the Ionian basin where the cyclonic circulation has clearly intensified since 1997. In the Levantine basin, although the Ierapetra eddy exhibits a clear seasonal cycle, it is not always present during our period of observation. These interannual changes seem to be correlated with the variability of the Mid-Mediterranean Jet, which produces strong meanders. A new view of the circulation in the south of the basin is indeed suggested by considering that the eddies observed in the Mersa-Matruh and Shikmona areas represent meanders of the Mid-Mediterranean Jet rather than permanent structures as commonly described. Secondly, the seasonal cycle of the Alboran gyres is confirmed. Moreover, these gyres and the Ierapetra eddy constitute the most intense signals of the Mediterranean Sea variability. Finally, this descriptive study illustrates the need to continue monitoring the surface circulation in order to better understand the dynamics of the Mediterranean Sea.

  5. Megaturbidite triggered by the ad 365 Cretan earthquake in the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polonia, Alina; Bonatti, Enrico; Camerlenghi, Angelo; Gasperini, Luca; Lucchi, Renata; Panieri, Giuliana

    2013-04-01

    Destructive earthquakes/tsunamis have affected repeatedly the circum Mediterranean highly populated coastal regions. A record of these past events can be provided by large-volume turbidites or megaturbidites, detected in the marine sedimentary record (Polonia et al., 2012). Megaturbidites have been identified in the Ionian basin (central Mediterranean) that is located between two tectonically active subduction zones (i.e. the Calabrin Arc to the North and the Hellenic Arc to the East). The uppermost megabed, has been named "Homogenite" (Kastens and Cita, 1981) or "Augias turbidite" (Hieke, 1984). Its well defined stratigraphic position, above the regional marker sapropel bed S1, has been interpreted as evidence that it was deposited in a single, basin-wide event capable to put into suspension simultaneously sediment at a basin-wide scale. Absence of absolute dating of the megabed and of a detailed chronostratigraphy of the deposits above and below the turbidite, have allowed a number of different correlations of this megaturbidite with the 3500 yr BP Minoan eruption of Santorini and related tsunamis in the Aegean Sea (Kastens and Cita, 1981), to the 7.600 ± 130 yr B.P. collapse of a flank of the Etna Volcano (Pareschi et al., 2006) or to the 365 earthquake in the Mediterranean (Vigliotti, 2008). Based on studies of sediment cores we collected from the Ionian seafloor (mineralogy, micropaleontology, elemental and isotopic geochemistry and radiocarbon dating), we show that the Homogenite/Augias turbidite (HAT), up to 20-25 m thick, was related to multi-source turbidity flows triggered by the 365 AD tsunami. We were able to reconstruct the different units deposited in response to the 365 AD Cretan earthquake/tsunami and the results confirm that the HAT is a unique instance of deep sea tsunami deposit. Backwash flows and related gravity-driven processes are the primary means of downslope sediment transport. An older similar deep sea megaturbidite was deposited in the

  6. Messinian Salinity Crisis - DREAM (Deep-sea Record of Mediterranean Messinian events) drilling projects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lofi, Johanna; Camerlenghi, Angelo

    2014-05-01

    About 6 My ago the Mediterranean Sea was transformed into a giant saline basin. This event, commonly referred to as the Messinian salinity crisis (MSC), changed the chemistry of the global ocean and had a permanent impact on both the terrestrial and marine ecosystems of a huge area surrounding the Mediterranean area. The first fascinating MSC scenario was proposed following DSDP Leg XIII in 1970 and envisaged an almost desiccated deep Mediterranean basin with a dramatic ~1,500 m drop of sea level, the incision of deep canyons by rivers on the continental margins, and a final catastrophic flooding event when the connections between the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic were re-established ~5.33 My ago. In spite of 40 years of multi-disciplinary research conducted on the MSC, modalities, timing, causes, chronology and consequence at local and planetary scale are still not yet fully understood, and the MSC event remains one of the longest-living controversies in Earth Science. Key factor for the controversy is the lack of a complete record of the MSC preserved in the deepest Mediterranean basins. Anywhere else, the MSC mostly generated a sedimentary/time lag corresponding to a widespread erosion surface. Correlations with the offshore depositional units are thus complex, preventing the construction of a coherent scenario linking the outcropping MSC evaporites, the erosion on the margins, and the deposition of clastics and evaporites in the abyssal plains. Recent activity by various research groups in order to identify locations for multiple-site drilling (including riser-drilling) in the Mediterranean Sea that would contribute to solve the open questions still existing about the MSC has culminated in two DREAM Magellan+ Workshops held in 2013 and 2014. A strategy and work plan have been established in order to submit an IODP Multi-phase Drilling Project("Uncovering A Salt Giant")including several site-specific drilling proposals addressing different scientific

  7. The Prevailing Weather and Traffic Conditions in the Evaluation of a Future ECA in the Mediterranean Sea. A view into the Western Mediterranean

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcella Castells i Sanabra

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Appendix III of MARPOL's Annex VI sets out the criteria and procedures for designating an emission control area (ECA.These criteria includes: a clear delineation of the proposed ECA; types of emissions proposed for control, land and sea areas at risk; emission quantification and impact assessment; prevailing weather conditions; data and quality on marine traffic; land based measures concurrent with the ECA adoption and the relative costs of reducing emissions from ships. This paper analyses the climate parameter together with traffic conditions: prevailing weather conditions as a parameter to be kept in mind for the adoption of a future ECA in the Mediterranean Sea. Preliminary results would show how marine emissions coming from existing traffic will impact the sea and land ecology in the Mediterranean area.

  8. Mixed layer warming-deepening in the Mediterranean Sea and its effect on the marine environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivetti, Irene; Boero, Ferdinando; Fraschetti, Simonetta; Zambianchi, Enrico; Lionello, Piero

    2015-04-01

    This work aims at investigating the evolution of the ocean mixed layer in the Mediterranean Sea and linking it to the occurrence of mass mortalities of benthic invertebrates. The temporal evolution of selected parameters describing the mixed layer and the seasonal thermocline is provided for the whole Mediterranean Sea for spring, summer and autumn and for the period 1945-2011. For this analysis all temperature profiles collected in the basin with bottles, Mechanical Bathy-Thermographs (MBT), eXpendable Bathy-Thermographs (XBT), and Conductivity-Temperature-Depth (CTD) have been used (166,990). These data have been extracted from three public sources: the MEDAR-MEDATLAS, the World Ocean Database 2013 and the MFS-VOS program. Five different methods for estimating the mixed layer depth are compared using temperature profiles collected at the DYFAMED station in the Ligurian Sea and one method, the so-called three-segment method, has been selected for a systematic analysis of the evolution of the uppermost part of the whole Mediterranean Sea. This method approximates the upper water column with three segments representing mixed layer, thermocline and deep layer and has shown to be the most suitable method for capturing the mixed layer depth for most shapes of temperature profiles. Mass mortalities events of benthic invertebrates have been identified by an extensive search of all data bases in ISI Web of Knowledge considering studies published from 1945 to 2011. Studies reporting the geographical coordinates, the timing of the events, the species involved and the depth at which signs of stress occurred have been considered. Results show a general increase of thickness and temperature of the mixed layer, deepening and cooling of the thermocline base in summer and autumn. Possible impacts of these changes are mass mortalities events of benthic invertebrates that have been documented since 1983 mainly in summer and autumn. It is also shown that most mass mortalities

  9. GHRSST Level 4 ODYSSEA Mediterranean Sea Regional Foundation Sea Surface Temperature Analysis (GDS version 1)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — A Group for High Resolution Sea Surface Temperature (GHRSST) Level 4 sea surface temperature analysis produced daily on an operational basis at Ifremer/CERSAT...

  10. GHRSST Level 4 EUR Mediterranean Sea Regional Foundation Sea Surface Temperature Analysis (GDS version 2)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — A Group for High Resolution Sea Surface Temperature (GHRSST) Level 4 sea surface temperature analysis produced daily by Ifremer/CERSAT (France) using optimal...

  11. Protogrammus alboranensis n. sp. (Teleostei: Callionymidae, a new species of dragonet from the Alboran Sea, western Mediterranean Sea

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    Carlos Farias

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Protogrammus alboranensis n. sp. is described on the basis of four specimens from the Alboran Sea, western Mediterranean Sea. It is characterized within the genus Protogrammus by a total of nine unbranched rays on the second dorsal fin, eight unbranched rays on the anal fin, a very small preopercular spine with an upcurved main tip and one point on the dorsal margin, which is lacking an antrorse spine at the base, the first and second spines of the first dorsal fin filamentous and much longer than the first ray of the second dorsal fin in males, the tip of the last ray of the second dorsal fin reaching beyond the caudal fin base in males, and the anal fin distally black in the males (translucent in females. A key to the species of Protogrammus is presented; the zoogeography of the species is discussed.

  12. SeaConditions: a web and mobile service for safer professional and recreational activities in the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coppini, Giovanni; Marra, Palmalisa; Lecci, Rita; Pinardi, Nadia; Cretì, Sergio; Scalas, Mario; Tedesco, Luca; D'Anca, Alessandro; Fazioli, Leopoldo; Olita, Antonio; Turrisi, Giuseppe; Palazzo, Cosimo; Aloisio, Giovanni; Fiore, Sandro; Bonaduce, Antonio; Vittal Kumkar, Yogesh; Ciliberti, Stefania Angela; Federico, Ivan; Mannarini, Gianandrea; Agostini, Paola; Bonarelli, Roberto; Martinelli, Sara; Verri, Giorgia; Lusito, Letizia; Rollo, Davide; Cavallo, Arturo; Tumolo, Antonio; Monacizzo, Tony; Spagnulo, Marco; Sorgente, Rorberto; Cucco, Andrea; Quattrocchi, Giovanni; Tonani, Marina; Drudi, Massimiliano; Nassisi, Paola; Conte, Laura; Panzera, Laura; Navarra, Antonio; Negro, Giancarlo

    2017-04-01

    Reliable and timely information on the environmental conditions at sea is key to the safety of professional and recreational users as well as to the optimal execution of their activities. The possibility of users obtaining environmental information in due time and with adequate accuracy in the marine and coastal environment is defined as sea situational awareness (SSA). Without adequate information on the environmental meteorological and oceanographic conditions, users have a limited capacity to respond, which has led to loss of lives and to large environmental disasters with enormous consequent damage to the economy, society and ecosystems. Within the framework of the TESSA project, new SSA services for the Mediterranean Sea have been developed. In this paper we present SeaConditions, which is a web and mobile application for the provision of meteorological and oceanographic observation and forecasting products. Model forecasts and satellite products from operational services, such as ECMWF and CMEMS, can be visualized in SeaConditions. In addition, layers of information related to bathymetry, sea level and ocean-colour data (chl a and water transparency) are displayed. Ocean forecasts at high spatial resolutions are included in the version of SeaConditions presented here. SeaConditions provides a user-friendly experience with a fluid zoom capability, facilitating the appropriate display of data with different levels of detail. SeaConditions is a single point of access to interactive maps from different geophysical fields, providing high-quality information based on advanced oceanographic models. The SeaConditions services are available through both web and mobile applications. The web application is available at www.sea-conditions.com and is accessible and compatible with present-day browsers. Interoperability with GIS software is implemented. User feedback has been collected and taken into account in order to improve the service. The SeaConditions iOS and

  13. Environmental control on Emiliania huxleyi coccolithophore calcification in the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Amario, Barbara; Grelaud, Michael; Ziveri, Patrizia

    2016-04-01

    The Mediterranean Sea, a "natural laboratory" characterized by strong environmental gradients, is likely to undergo serious alterations due to climate change and ocean acidification. These processes are expected to affect also phytoplankton distribution. Coccolithophores are the only phytoplankton calcifying group and laboratory studies on E. huxleyi, the most abundant and widely distributed species of coccolithophores worldwide, yield strain-specific results. Culture experiments must be integrated with observations in the natural environment to understand existing interactions between drivers, and to verify population structures in different areas. Two transects spanning the south-western and south-eastern basins have been investigated, combining data from April 2011 (Meteor cruise M84/3) and May 2013 (MedSeA cruise). E. huxleyi coccolith morphometry was analyzed to determine average mass and length. These results were then compared with morphological observations performed on the largely dominant E. huxleyi Type A through scanning electron microscope (SEM). We distinguished four main calcification morphologies within E. huxleyi Type A: low-calcified (A1), medium-calcified (A2), high-calcified with closed central area (A3a), and open central area (A3b). E. huxleyi coccolith mass was strongly and positively correlated with the relative abundance of a particular morphology. Moreover, the calcification morphologies were preferentially distributed in the Mediterranean according to specific combinations of environmental variables, which included the carbonate chemistry system. The distribution of E. huxleyi Type A calcification morphologies in the Mediterranean is likely to be influenced by climate changes. Coccolithophore calcification degree is connected to the carbon cycle through photosynthesis / calcification ratio and sedimentation (particulate inorganic and organic carbon reaching the seafloor). This study aims to provide a basis for future investigations on the

  14. Influence of chemosynthetic ecosystems on nematode community structure and biomass in the deep eastern Mediterranean Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. Lampadariou

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Mud volcanoes are a~special type of cold seeps where life is based on chemoautotrophic processes. They are considered to be extreme environments and are characterized by unique megafaunal and macrofaunal communities. However, very few studies on mud volcanoes taking into account the smaller meiobenthic communities have been carried out. Two mud volcanoes were explored during the MEDECO (MEditerranean Deep-sea ECOsystems cruise (2007 with the remotely operated vehicle (ROV Victor-6000: Amsterdam, located south of Turkey between 1700 and 2000 m depth (Anaximander mud field; and Napoli, south of Crete, located along the Mediterranean Ridge at about 2000 m depth (Olimpi mud field. The major aim of this study was to describe distributional patterns of meiofaunal communities and nematode assemblages from different seep microhabitats. Meiofaunal taxa and nematode assemblages at both mud volcanoes differed significantly from other Mediterranean sites in terms of standing stocks, dominance and species diversity. Density and biomass values were significantly higher at the seep sites, particularly at Amsterdam. Patterns of nematode diversity, the dominant meiofaunal taxon, varied, displaying both very high or very low species richness and dominance, depending on the microhabitat stu