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Naples, Italy

The Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn is a research institute in Naples, Italy, devoted to basic research in biology. Research is largely interdisciplinary involving the fields of evolution, biochemistry, molecular biology, neurobiology, cell biology, biological oceanography, marine botany, molecular plant biology, benthic ecology, and ecophysiology.Founded in 1872 as a private concern by Anton Dohrn, in 1982 the Stazione Zoologica came under the supervision and control of the Ministero dell'Università e della Ricerca Scientifica e Tecnologica as a National Institute. Wikipedia.


Crocetta F.,Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn
Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom | Year: 2012

The state of the knowledge about the marine alien molluscan species from Italy is provided based on a critical review of records compiled from an extensive literature survey and from unpublished data obtained from 2005 to 2010. Based on the IUCN definition of 'alien', 35 molluscan taxa (18 Gastropoda, 16 Bivalvia and 1 Cephalopoda) are reported here, for each of which the following data (collected up to December 2010) are provided: published and unpublished records from the coastal and offshore territorial seawaters of Italy, including lagoons, within the 14 biogeographical sea divisions covering the Italian shores, date of first record, most plausible vector(s) of introduction and establishment status. The southern Ionian Sea, the northern Adriatic Sea and the eastern-central Tyrrhenian Sea resulted to be the areas most affected by alien molluscan introductions. The rate of records of new alien species (evaluated on the basis of live findings) is quite uniform over five decades, with six to eight species recorded per decade. The analysis of the vectors showed shipping/maritime transport to be the most common vector of introduction (40%), followed by trade (24%). Nineteen alien molluscan species (54%) were considered as established in Italy. © 2011 Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom. Source


Kroeker K.J.,University of California at Davis | Gambi M.C.,Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn | Micheli F.,Stanford University
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America | Year: 2013

Disturbances are natural features of ecosystems that promote variability in the community and ultimately maintain diversity. Although it is recognized that global change will affect environmental disturbance regimes, our understanding of the community dynamics governing ecosystem recovery and the maintenance of functional diversity in future scenarios is very limited. Here, we use one of the few ecosystems naturally exposed to future scenarios of environmental change to examine disturbance and recovery dynamics. We examine the recovery patterns of marine species from a physical disturbance across different acidification regimes caused by volcanic CO2 vents. Plots of shallow rocky reef were cleared of all species in areas of ambient, low, and extreme low pH that correspond to near-future and extreme scenarios for ocean acidification. Our results illustrate how acidification decreases the variability of communities, resulting in homogenization and reduced functional diversity at a landscape scale. Whereas the recovery trajectories in ambient pH were highly variable and resulted in a diverse range of assemblages, recovery was more predictable with acidification and consistently resulted in very similar algaldominated assemblages. Furthermore, low pH zones had fewer signs of biological disturbance (primarily sea urchin grazing) and increased recovery rates of the dominant taxa (primarily fleshy algae). Together, our results highlight how environmental change can cause ecosystem simplification via environmentally mediated changes in community dynamics in the near future, with cascading impacts on functional diversity and ecosystem function. © PNAS 2013. Source


Kroeker K.J.,Stanford University | Micheli F.,Stanford University | Gambi M.C.,Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn
Nature Climate Change | Year: 2013

Ocean acidification represents a pervasive environmental change that is predicted to affect a wide range of species, yet our understanding of the emergent ecosystem impacts is very limited. Many studies report detrimental effects of acidification on single species in lab studies, especially those with calcareous shells or skeletons. Observational studies using naturally acidified ecosystems have shown profound shifts away from such calcareous species, and there has been an assumption that direct impacts of acidification on sensitive species drive most ecosystem responses. We tested an alternative hypothesis that species interactions attenuate or amplify the direct effects of acidification on individual species. Here, we show that altered competitive dynamics between calcareous species and fleshy seaweeds drive significant ecosystem shifts in acidified conditions. Although calcareous species recruited and grew at similar rates in ambient and low pH conditions during early successional stages, they were rapidly overgrown by fleshy seaweeds later in succession in low pH conditions. The altered competitive dynamics between calcareous species and fleshy seaweeds is probably the combined result of decreased growth rates of calcareous species, increased growth rates of fleshy seaweeds, and/or altered grazing rates. Phase shifts towards ecosystems dominated by fleshy seaweed are common in many marine ecosystems, and our results suggest that changes in the competitive balance between these groups represent a key leverage point through which the physiological responses of individual species to acidification could indirectly lead to profound ecosystem changes in an acidified ocean. © 2013 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved. Source


Hochscheid S.,Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn
Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology | Year: 2013

For most of their lifetime, sea turtles have to organize their underwater activities around the necessity to return to the surface to breathe. This group of animals has developed extraordinary diving capacities (over 10. h of single breath-hold dives and dive depths exceeding 1200. m) that allow them to exploit oceanic and neritic habitats, and maintain their role in marine ecosystems, despite the numerous threats imposed on them by human activities. Understanding sea turtle behavior, and the extent of flexibility with which they respond to environmental changes, has been a key element of studies on sea turtle diving behavior for over 25. years. Here, I review the major outcomes of these studies, summarizing published data on dive durations and depths, and identifying the factors that influence the shape and temporal patterns of sea turtle diving. By carefully assembling existing published information in this research field, some unique features emerged (such as the ability of some turtles to rest for extended periods in the middle of the water column), as well as knowledge gaps that require further investigations (such as the behavior and diving capacity of small juvenile turtles). In addition to simply collecting and presenting existing data, this review also highlights the needs for some level of minimum standardization, especially for studies involving electronic telemetry equipment, in addition to clarifying where future effort should be focused. Ultimately, this review is anticipated to serve as a reference guide for scientists and wildlife managers alike, who seek to mitigate threats to sea turtles through specific knowledge-based conservation strategies. © 2013 Elsevier B.V. Source


Smetacek V.,Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research | Zingone A.,Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn
Nature | Year: 2013

Sudden beaching of huge seaweed masses smother the coastline and form rotting piles on the shore. The number of reports of these events in previously unaffected areas has increased worldwide in recent years. These 'seaweed tides' can harm tourism-based economies, smother aquaculture operations or disrupt traditional artisanal fisheries. Coastal eutrophication is the obvious, ultimate explanation for the increase in seaweed biomass, but the proximate processes that are responsible for individual beaching events are complex and require dedicated study to develop effective mitigation strategies. Harvesting the macroalgae, a valuable raw material, before they beach could well be developed into an effective solution. © 2013 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved. Source

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