The influence of initial surface chemistry on development of the fouling community at Beaufort, North Carolina
Larval settlement of macrofouling invertebrates is affected by the surface energy of the substratum. We followed the development of the fouling community on 10 substrata of differing surface energy to determine if initial effects on settlement manifest themselves over longer time spans as variation in community structure. We monitored two arrays of silanized glass rods for 3 days to assess settlement, then allowed them to remain immersed. After 30 days the coverage of five groups of fouling organisms-barnacles, tubeworms, Bugula neritina (L), encrusting bryozoans and hydrozoans-was quantified for each surface. Silanization treatments had a significant effect on the structure of the fouling community colonizing rods immersed on 26 June 1988. We observed no such effect for a second array immersed on 2 August 1988. The structure of the communities developing on the substrata immersed in June appeared to be unrelated to initial settlement patterns. The composition of the fouling community varied spatially for both experimental arrays. While surface energy may initially be important in determining the settlement of macrofouling organisms, its effects, over the long term, on development of fouling communities appear indirect at best, and are complicated by temporal variation.
Holm, ER; Cannon, G; Roberts, D; Schmidt, AR; Sutherland, JP; Rittschof, D
Volume / Issue
Start / End Page
International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)