The results of a comparative study of the fatty-acid composition in eight species of holothurians that were collected in the Sea of Okhotsk in the area of the Kuril Islands (depths of 90–560 m) are presented. It is shown that interspecific differences in the fatty-acid compositions of the holothurians were consistent with the isotope composition (δ13C and δ15N) and the structural features of the tentacles and the lifestyle of holothurians, as indicators of trophic resources used by these holothurians. According to the results of the cluster analysis, the holothurians were divided into three groups. The first group included suspension-feeding dendrochirotides Eupentacta pusilla and Pseudocnus fallax with a high content of the fatty acid 20:5(n-3), which is a marker of diatoms, and with the δ15N values that are typical of consumers of suspended organic matter. The second group consisted of the dendrochirotides Psolus chitonoides and Psolidium sp. with a much lower content of 20:5 (n-3) and higher contents of 20:4 (n-6) and 22:6 (n-3), as well as high values of δ15N, which are typical of surface deposit-feeders. The third group consisted of surface and subsurface depositfeeders, Chiridota sp., Molpadia orientalis, Pseudostichopus mollis, and Synallactes nozawai. Very high contents of 20: 4 (n-6) and 21: 4 (n-7) were typical of the third group and the highest values of δ15N, indicating feeding on repeatedly recycled organic matter.
Russian Journal of Marine Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Jan 5, 2016
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