Diverse coral communities in naturally acidified waters of a Western Pacific reef


Anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions are acidifying the oceans, reducing the concentration of carbonate ions ([CO32-) that calcifying organisms need to build and cement coral reefs. To date, studies of a handful of naturally acidified reef systems reveal depauperate communities, sometimes with reduced coral cover and calcification rates, consistent with results of laboratory-based studies. Here we report the existence of highly diverse, coral-dominated reef communities under chronically low pH and aragonite saturation state (Omega ar). Biological and hydrographic processes change the chemistry of the seawater moving across the barrier reefs and into Palau's Rock Island bays, where levels of acidification approach those projected for the western tropical Pacific open ocean by 2100. Nevertheless, coral diversity, cover, and calcification rates are maintained across this natural acidification gradient. Identifying the combination of biological and environmental factors that enable these communities to persist could provide important insights into the future of coral reefs under anthropogenic acidification.

In order to allow full comparability with other ocean acidification data sets, the R package seacarb (Lavigne et al, 2014) was used to compute a complete and consistent set of carbonate system variables, as described by Nisumaa et al. (2010). In this dataset the original values were archived in addition with the recalculated parameters (see related PI). The date of carbonate chemistry calculation is 2014-07-08. Funded by a WHOI-OLI Postdoctoral Scholarship to KEF Shamberger, NSF OCE-1041106 to AL Cohen and DC McCorkle, TNC award PNA/WHOI061810 to AL Cohen and the Palau International Coral Reef Center.

Supplement to: Shamberger, K E F; Cohen, Anne L; Golbuu, Yimnang; McCorkle, Daniel C; Lentz, S J; Barkley, Hannah C (2014): Diverse coral communities in naturally acidified waters of a Western Pacific reef. Geophysical Research Letters, 41(2), 499-504

DOI https://doi.org/10.1594/PANGAEA.833900
Related Identifier https://doi.org/10.1002/2013GL058489
Related Identifier https://www.bco-dmo.org/dataset/489014
Related Identifier https://cran.r-project.org/package=seacarb
Metadata Access https://ws.pangaea.de/oai/provider?verb=GetRecord&metadataPrefix=datacite4&identifier=oai:pangaea.de:doi:10.1594/PANGAEA.833900
Creator Shamberger, K E F ORCID logo; Cohen, Anne L; Golbuu, Yimnang; McCorkle, Daniel C; Lentz, S J ORCID logo; Barkley, Hannah C ORCID logo
Publisher PANGAEA
Contributor Yang, Yan
Publication Year 2014
Rights Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported; https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/
OpenAccess true
Language English
Resource Type Supplementary Dataset; Dataset
Format text/tab-separated-values
Size 132 data points
Discipline Earth System Research
Spatial Coverage (134.390W, 7.270S, 134.560E, 7.580N)