Meeting Abstract

S4-1.4  Thursday, Jan. 5  Larval life and dispersal potential of deep-sea animals from the Intra-American Seas YOUNG, C.M.*; HE, R.; EMLET, R.B.; LI, Y.; QIAN, H.; ARELLANO, S.M. ; VAN GAEST, A.L.; BENNETT, K.; SMART, T.I. ; WOLF, M.; RICE, M.E.; University of Oregon; North Carolina State University; University of Oregon; North Carolina State University; North Carolina State University; University of Oregon; University of Oregon; University of Oregon; University of Oregon; University of Oregon; Smithsonian Marine Station, Ft. Pierce cmyoung@uoregon.edu

Using ocean circulation data, we modeled the potential dispersal distances for 7 species of bathyal invertebrates whose durations of larval life have been estimated from laboratory rearing, MOCNESS plankton sampling, spawning times and recruitment. Methane seep species from the Gulf of Mexico included the gastropod Bathynerita naticoidea, the bivalve Bathymodiolus childressi and the siboglinid polychaete Lamellibrachia luymesi. Non-seep species included the asteroid Sclerasterias tanneri from the Gulf of Mexico, the echinoids Cidaris blakei and Stylocidaris lineata from the Bahamas, and the sipunculan Phascolosoma turnerae, which is found in Barbados, the Bahamas and the Gulf of Mexico. Pelagic larval durations ranged from 3 weeks in lecithotrophic tubeworm larvae to 2 years in planktotrophic starfish larvae. Larval trajectories were modeled with the LTRANS Lagrangian larval transport model (Schlag et al., 2008) using ocean circulation hindcasts produced by either the South Atlantic Bight and Gulf of Mexico (SABGOM) ocean model or the Global HyCOM ocean model. The model predicted significant monthly variation in transport directions and distances for species that reproduce continuously, and significant inter-annual variation in species with seasonal breeding. For example, planktotrophic sipunculan larvae from the Northern Gulf of Mexico were capable of reaching the mid-Atlantic off Newfoundland, a distance of more than 3000 km during a 7-month drifting period, but the proportion retained in the Gulf of Mexico varied significantly among years. Larvae drifting in the upper water column had much longer trajectories than larvae drifting for the same amount of time at bathyal depths. Model results are in strong agreement with genetic information on seep species in the Gulf of Mexico.