Institute Ecologia Litoral

el Campello, Spain

Institute Ecologia Litoral

el Campello, Spain
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Martinez-Martinez J.,University of Alicante | Martinez-Martinez J.,Instituto Geologico Y Minero Of Espana Igme | Benavente D.,University of Alicante | Jimenez Gutierrez S.,Institute Ecologia Litoral | And 2 more authors.
Building and Environment | Year: 2017

The Nueva Tabarca fortress constitutes an exceptional example of baroque architectural heritage. However, the aggressiveness of the local environment and the low suitability of the used building stone cause their fast deterioration. The hydro-mechanical properties of the building stones, the characteristics of their porous system (open porosity and pore size distribution), the global climate of the island and the particular microenvironmental conditions of each studied monument explain the weathering process acting on the porous limestone of Nueva Tabarca. Results reveal that Halite crystallization and wind erosion are the main weathering agents. On the one hand, wind plays a critical weathering action because it controls the salt crystallization process, the abrasion by wind-blown particles, as well as the wind-driven rain impact. Different weathering forms are related to each erosion mechanism. On the other hand, the relative humidity in the island determines the agressiveness of the halite crystallization process. Salt damage activity was calculated quantifying not only the number of halite crystallization-dissolution transitions, but also the duration of the driest periods. Finally, a novel parameter (Equivalent Years, Yeq) is defined in order to quantify the representativeness of standarized artificial ageing tests. Yeq expresses the number of years of natural ageing required for achieving the same weathered state of rocks after laboratory procedures. A wide range of Yeq values are obtained for the studied rocks (from 8 to 165 years), showing a strong dependency with both the exposure time as well as the agressiveness of the environment. © 2017 Elsevier Ltd

Tatian M.,National University of Cordoba | Schwindt E.,CONICET | Lagger C.,National University of Cordoba | Varela M.M.,Institute Ecologia Litoral
Spixiana | Year: 2010

Despite the poorly studied biodiversity of the Southwestern Atlantic, several exotic species have already been detected. Here we detail the distribution and abundance of the invasive ascidian Ascidiella aspersa (Müller, 1776) in the SW Atlantic and review its historical records. For this purpose, we determined ascidians collected since 1914 from museum collections and inspected randomly sampled natural biota collections as well as colonization on plates deployed in situ for two years throughout six major harbours along the Patagonian Argentine coast. Museum collections revealed a sudden presence of A. aspersa early in the 1960's. The species is actually distributed over 10 latitudinal degrees in harbours and subtidal areas along the SW Atlantic. Altogether, results suggest that this species, an exotic for the SW Atlantic, is able to colonize new areas. Further studies are needed to assess A. aspersa invasion impacts on biodiversity in the study area.

Garcia-March J.R.,University of Alicante | Jimenez S.,Institute Ecologia Litoral | Sanchis M.A.,University of Alicante | Monleon S.,University of Alicante | And 3 more authors.
Marine Biology | Year: 2016

The rhythms and responses of animals to environmental factors are important issues for their adaptation to natural cycles. These rhythms assure an optimum synchrony between organisms and their environment. Bio-logging enables monitoring these activity cycles remotely. To characterize rhythms and responses of fan mussels (Pinna nobilis) to environmental factors, six individuals were monitored from April 2009 to October 2011. The study was conducted at a station in the western Mediterranean at 11 m depth in Tabarca Island Marine Reserve (Alicante, Spain). Sensors at the station monitored dissolved oxygen (mg l−1), turbidity (ntu), temperature (°C), chlorophyll a concentration (chl a) (mg m−3), current speed (cm s−1), and direction (°). One pattern of gaping activity (P1) occurred from mid-July–early August–early November, whereas another pattern (P2) occurred the rest of the time (i.e., from early November–mid-July–early August). The activity was synchronized among the fan mussels and showed autocorrelation peaks at a period of 21.9–24 h. In P1, the fan mussels opened their valves according to the position and illumination of the sun and moon. In P2, however, individuals did not track sun and moonlight, although their gaping activity was regular and synchronized. Likewise, individuals were unaffected by high-frequency (daily) variation in dissolved oxygen and (chl a). Gaping activity was directly influenced by current intensity and direction. The shift between the two patterns and the presence of similar periods of autocorrelation in the activity time series indicate that P. nobilis has an internal clock. © 2016, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

Guillen J.E.,Institute Ecologia Litoral | Sanchez Lizaso J.L.,University of Alicante | Jimenez S.,Institute Ecologia Litoral | Martinez J.,Institute Ecologia Litoral | And 5 more authors.
Journal of Sea Research | Year: 2013

Results of the monitoring network of the Posidonia oceanica meadows in the Valencia region in Spain are analysed. For spatial comparison the whole data set has been analysed, however, for temporal trends we only selected stations that have been monitored at least 6. years in the period of 2002-2011 (26 stations in 13 localities).At the south of the studied area, meadows are larger, and they have higher density and covering than that in the Valencia Gulf, excluding Oropesa meadow. Monitoring of P. oceanica meadows in the Valencia region in Spain indicates that most of them are stationary or they are increasing their density and covering while no decline was observed in the studied meadows. These results indicate that there is not a general decline of P. oceanica meadows and that the decline of P. oceanica, when it has been observed in other studies, is produced by local causes that may be managed at the local level. This study also reflects the importance of long series of direct data to analyse trends in the population dynamics for slow-growing species. © 2013 The Authors.

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