Seasonal variation in the diet of estuarine bivalves

Date 2018
Temporal extent 2014-03-01 -2014-12-17
Author(s) Jung Alexa SarinaORCID1, Van Der Veer Henk W.ORCID1, Van Der Meer Marcel T.J.2, Philippart Catharina J.M.ORCID1, 3
Affiliation(s) 1 : NIOZ Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research, Department of Coastal Systems, and Utrecht University, P.O. Box 59, 1790 AB Den Burg, Texel, The Netherlands
2 : NIOZ Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research, Department of Microbiology & Biogeochemistry, and Utrecht University, P.O. Box 59, 1790 AB Den Burg, Texel, The Netherlands
3 : University of Utrecht, Department of Physical Geography, P.O. Box 80.115, 3508 TC Utrecht, The Netherlands
DOI 10.17882/56438
Publisher SEANOE
Keyword(s) Wadden Sea, Bivalves, Trophic interactions, Stable isotopes

Estuarine food webs are generally considered to be supported by marine pelagic and benthic primary producers and by the import of dead organic matter from the open sea. Although estuaries receive considerable amounts of freshwater phytoplankton and organic compounds from adjacent rivers, the potential contribution of these living and dead matter to estuarine food webs is often assumed to be negligible and, therefore, not examined. Based on stable isotope analyses, we report the importance of freshwater suspended particulate organic matter (FW-SPOM) for fuelling estuarine food webs in comparison to estuarine SPOM and microphytobenthos. On average throughout the year, this so-far neglected food source appeared to have contributed 50 %-60 % to the food intake of suspension-feeding bivalves such as cockles (Cerastoderma edule), mussels (Mytilus edulis) and pacific oysters (Magallana gigas) at the Balgzand tidal flats, an estuarine site in the western Wadden Sea (12-32 psu). For these species, this proportion was particularly high in autumn during strong run-off of SPOM-rich freshwater, whilst estuarine SPOM (20 %-25 %) and microphytobenthos (15 %-30 %) were relatively important in summer when the freshwater run-off was very low. These findings have implications for our understanding of the trophic interactions within coastal food webs and for freshwater management of estuarine ecosystems.

Licence CC-BY-NC-ND
Acknowledgements We would like to thank Bas Wensveen, Jezte van Zwol, Hans Witte, Sander Holthuisen, Job ten Horn, Arne Dekinga, Maarten Brugge, Dennis Mosk, Niamh McSweeny and the Crew of the RV Stern for the support in collecting and sorting the samples for this study. Also we would like to thank Karsten Dekker, Jort Ossebaar and Stefan Schouten for the support in the Lab. A special thanks to Marcel van der Meer for his valuable feedback on an earlier version of the manuscript.
Sensor metadata

Thermo Scientific Delta V Advantage Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometer equipped with a Flash 2000 Organic Element Analyzer

File Size Format Processing Access
Data file 20 KB CSV Quality controlled data Open access
r script 48 KB TEXTE Open access
READ ME 1 KB TEXTE Open access
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How to cite 

Jung Alexa Sarina, Van Der Veer Henk W., Van Der Meer Marcel T.J., Philippart Catharina J.M. (2018). Seasonal variation in the diet of estuarine bivalves. SEANOE.

In addition to properly cite this dataset, it would be appreciated that the following work(s) be cited too, when using this dataset in a publication :

Jung Alexa Sarina, van der Veer Henk W., van der Meer Marcel T. J., Philippart Catharina J. M., Rodrigues Clara F. (2019). Seasonal variation in the diet of estuarine bivalves. PLOS ONE, 14(6), e0217003-.