Thirty-year recovery of mollusc communities after nuclear experimentations on Fangataufa atoll (Tuamotu, French Polynesia)

Abstract : A 30-year study of temporal changes in gastropod community structure on the reefs of a Pacific Ocean atoll (Fangataufa, Tuamotu Archipelago) subjected to atmospheric nuclear tests during the 1960s offered the opportunity for an otherwise impossible field experiment that could help ecologists understand mollusc primary succession. Reef molluscs were partly or entirely wiped out by the heat of the nuclear tests and the reefs were recolonized by ocean larvae. On all reefs, community composition before the tests was very different from what it evolved to afterwards. A new method of analysis was developed to study the temporal variation in community composition before versus after the tests (temporal beta diversity). Analyses showed that community compositions diverged through time among the reefs. Only some species can survive the harsh conditions of supralittoral zones, so the same species recolonized them; environmental filtering controlled the development of the new communities. In the reef flat and edge zones, differences in community composition seem to be the result of neutral stochastic colonization by larvae coming from the open ocean. All reefs developed a community composition quite different from that before the nuclear tests.
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Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, Royal Society, The, 2015, 282 (1810), 〈10.1098/rspb.2015.0750〉
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https://hal-univ-perp.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-01174175
Contributeur : Olivier Savoyat <>
Soumis le : mercredi 8 juillet 2015 - 15:04:32
Dernière modification le : mardi 15 mai 2018 - 11:34:02

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Pierre Legendre, Bernard Salvat. Thirty-year recovery of mollusc communities after nuclear experimentations on Fangataufa atoll (Tuamotu, French Polynesia). Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, Royal Society, The, 2015, 282 (1810), 〈10.1098/rspb.2015.0750〉. 〈hal-01174175〉

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