2013 UCSD Student Research Showcase

2013 Research Showcase


Master’s students Susan Kram, Samantha Clements & Clinton Edwards will be presenting  posters at UCSD’s 5th annual Division of Biological Sciences’ Research Showcase 2013.  The event is on June 5th from 4-7:15pm in Price Center: Ballroom A/B. 


Susan Kram


Response of calcified and noncalcified southern California macroalgae to increased CO2 and temperature.


Declining oceanic pH associated with Ocean Acidification (OA) is expected to negatively affect calcified macroalgae, but it is unclear how noncalcified macroalgae will respond. Global warming projects increased oceanic temperatures which could further help or harm macroalgae. We determined how CO2 enrichment and temperature increase affected seven species of common southern California macroalgae growth and chlorophyll fluorescence. One noncalcified alga increased growth rates and one calcified alga decreased growth rates under CO2 enrichment; the others were not affected. Another noncalcified alga showed decreased growth rates under increased temperature treatment while calcified alga was not affected. Neither treatment affected chlorophyll fluorescence.


Samantha Clements


Are herbivores picky eaters? An assessment of functional diversity of Acanthurids in Maui, Hawaii


Herbivores on coral reefs are instrumental in mitigating the competitive interactions between reef-building corals and fleshy algae; however, not all herbivores provide the same services. While there has been research on functional diversity of herbivores across families, there is limited information on the functional diversity of species within the family Acanthuridae, containing a majority of herbivorous fish species. My study aims to identify functional diversity within this family through observations of foraging behavior and analysis of stomach contents for three species (Acanthurus nigrofuscus, Acanthurus olivaceus, and Ctenochaetus strigosus) at three sites on the leeward side of Maui.


Clinton Edwards




Coral reef herbivores provide important ecological services by regulating competitive interactions between reef building corals and fleshy algae yet little is known about their global status specifically, how fishing may alter community structure. We conduct a global synthesis of coral reef herbivorous fish by compiling data from peer-reviewed sources and scientific monitoring programs. Our results show that herbivorous fish biomass is more than two-times higher at sites not accessible to fisheries than at accessible sites and is independent of regional effects. Analysis of important feeding sub-groups further identifies that fishing disproportionately reduces the abundance of the larger-bodied Scraper/Excavator and Browser groups relative others. Loss of larger bodied groups likely alters the overall effectiveness of the herbivore community to regulate algal abundance on reefs. This is the first global assessment of the variability in and effects of fishing on coral reef herbivore populations and includes many remote locations that may be useful for developing management targets globally.

One Comment on “2013 UCSD Student Research Showcase”

  1. Is anyone studying the effect of global warming on mollusca, particularly those of shallow water coral reefs in the Indopacific region? My interest is in the gastropoda specifically.

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