The embryogenesis of the sea urchin sand dollar Scaphechinus mirabilis was used as bioindicators of seawater quality from the impact areas of the Sea of Japan/East Sea (Peter the Great Bay) and the Sea of Okhotsk (northwestern shelf of Sakhalin Island and western shelf of Kamchatka Peninsula). Fertilization membrane formation, first cleavage, blastula formation, gastrulation, and 2-armed and 4-armed pluteus formation have been analyzed and a number of abnormalities were calculated. Number of embryogenesis anomalies in sand dollar larvae exposed to sea water from different stations in Peter the Great Bay corresponds to pollution level at each area. The Sea of Okhotsk is the main fishing area for Russia. Anthropogenic impact on the marine ecosystem is caused by fishing and transport vessels mainly. But two shelf areas are considered as “hot spots” due to oil and gas drilling. Offshore oil exploitation on the northeastern Sakhalin Island has been started and at present time oil is being drill on oil-extracting platforms continuously. Significant reserves of hydrocarbons are prospected on western Kamchatka shelf, and exploitation drilling in this area was intensified in 2014. A higher number of abnormalities at gastrula and pluteus stages (19–36%) were detected for the stations around oil platforms near Sakhalin Island. On the western Kamchatka shelf number of abnormalities was 7–21%. Such anomalies as exogastrula, incomplete development of pairs of arms were not observed at all; only the delay of development was registered. Eggs, embryos, and larvae of sea urchins are the suitable bioindicators of early disturbances caused by marine pollution in impact ecosystems.
Archives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology – Springer Journals
Published: May 20, 2017
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