Interactions among the unattached red alga Gracilaria gracilis, the dominant species of an algal community, and associated algal species Chaetomorpha linum, Enteromorpha prolifera f. prolifera, and Polysiphonia sp. were studied during and after an algal bloom. It was shown that during their bloom the associated algae Enteromorpha and Polysiphonia sp. significantly decreased the photosynthetic rate of G. gracilis but did not affect its growth rate. It is suggested that the inhibition of Gracilaria gracilis photosynthesis is connected to the impact of extracellular metabolites excreted by Chaetomorpha linum, Enteromorpha prolifera f. prolifera, and Polysiphonia sp. In laboratory experiments, the photosynthetic rate of the associated species was enhanced in the presence of Gracilaria. However, no significant alterations were observed in the content of chlorophyll a, growth, and the dark respiration rates of associated algae when they were kept together with Gracilaria. It was suggested that allelopathic interactions observed among algal species during the formation of the monospecific Gracilaria community, as well as during algal blooms, are not determinative.
Russian Journal of Marine Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Nov 14, 2005
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