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Interdisciplinary Seminar: Chris Chambers
November 25, 2019 @ 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm
An interdisciplinary seminar from UNC Marine Sciences graduate student, Chris Chambers. Presented by the UNC-CH Department of Marine Sciences and UNC’s Institute of Marine Sciences (IMS). The main location of this event will be in G201 on the ground floor of Murray Hall on UNC-CH campus in Chapel Hill, NC. The seminar will be streamed live to room seminar room 222 at IMS in Morehead City, NC. This event will be held on Monday, November 25th, at 12:20pm.
Seminar Title: Identifying factors that structure deep-sea vent and seep macrofaunal communities
Abstract: Deep sea chemosynthetic ecosystems may provide important insights into how early life may have evolved on Earth, and how it could potentially on other planets. Comparative studies of two such ecosystems, hydrothermal vents and cold seeps, allow for a greater understanding of ecological processes that structure the communities in these similar but distinct environments. However, vents and seeps are typically isolated from one another by distance, depth, and other biogeographic barriers that prevent colonization by larval forms of macrofauna. Guaymas Basin in the Gulf of California (27° 20’ N, 111° 15’ W) is uniquely suited for a comparison study of vents and seeps because it has both ecosystems at similar depths, similar sedimentary settings, and both located close together and separated by no biogeographic barriers. So, Guaymas Basin is ideal to study these ecosystems without other confounding factors. The density, diversity, and composition of different macrofaunal assemblages was measured at vent and seep sites and compared with each other and physiochemical data collected. Despite the chemical and temperature differences in vent and seep fluid, the density and diversity of the communities is controlled mainly by fluid-flux at both ecosystems. Similarly, assemblages at both ecosystems show no overall difference in community composition, with 85% of identified species among dominant families shared by both ecosystems. These results show macrofaunal species may be able to colonize a wider range of environmental conditions than previously thought and support the idea of continuity between macrofaunal communities of vent and seep ecosystems.