Marine Aliens II project

Controlling marine invasive species by targetting vectors of dispersal

The classification of ports/marinas in terms of hull fouling potential

Preliminary studies by the Marine Aliens II team have shown that configuration and exposure to water movement is important in determining the composition of the macrofouling flora and fauna that becomes established in the marina/ port. During the summer of 2009, a co-ordinated experiment led by John Bishop (UoP/MBA) was undertaken by four of the institutes within the Marine Aliens II team to study larval settlement and subsequent growth of fouling animals in marinas of varying configuration and environmental variables in 23 marinas across Great Britain. A workshop on the protocols to be adopted and the identification of target species was held in July 2009 at the MBA in Plymouth.

 

Correx settlement panel

A Correx settlement panel prior to deployment in a marina

Correx (corrugated plastic) units providing both vertical and horizontal surfaces were manufactured, and replicate sets were placed in two regions of each marina for periods of two and eight weeks.  Marinas were targeted in SW England (nine sites, MBA), Wales (eight sites, Bangor University), W. Scotland (three sites, SAMS) and E. Scotland (three sites, Marine Scotland).  In addition, temperature loggers and current measurements were taken to determine differences in environmental variables between marinas. Plates were retrieved and scored according to settlement and growth rates of the attached species, and the analysis of data is in process at the time of writing.  The existing fauna in each marina was surveyed as an adjunct to the panel deployments.

Partners NHM QUB Univeristy of Plymouth MBA SAMS