Caulerpa cylindracea Sonder invasion modifies trophic niche in infralittoral rocky benthic community
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AuthorsAlomar, C. (Carme); Deudero, S. (Salud); Andaloro, F. (Franco); Castriota, L. (Luca); Consoli, P. (Pierpaolo); Falautano, M. (Manuela); Sinopoli, M. (Mauro)
KeywordsInvasive alien species
The Mediterranean basin is one of the most invaded seas of the world. Invasive species have affected coastal benthic communities inducing structural changes. Since first reports, in the early 90s, Caulerpa cylindracea is considered one of the most important invasive event in the Mediterranean Sea where it has invaded large areas of soft bottoms, seagrass meadows and rocky shores. To assess effects of C. cylindracea in rocky ecosystems, benthic food webs have been compared between invaded and non-invaded coastal conditions through stable isotopes analyses. In addition, the convex hull area of the two types of conditions has been calculated as a proxy for the total extent of trophic diversity within each food web. Results have shown that the trophic niche width is at least 1.4 times wider in invaded conditions than in non-invaded conditions. In addition, this study gives further evidence of similar feeding analogies between the invasive herbivore fish, Siganus luridus and native herbivore ...
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