Elevated pCO2 causes developmental delay in early larval Pacific oysters, Crassostrea gigas

<p>**This is a draft version of the following article: Timmins-Schiffman et al. (2012) Elevated pCO2 causes developmental delay in early larval Pacific oysters, Crassostrea gigas. Marine Biology, doi:10.1007/s00227-012-2055-x, which has been published in final form at the link provided below.**</p> <p><br></p> <p>Increasing atmospheric CO<sub>2</sub> equilibrates with surface seawater, elevating the concentration of aqueous hydrogen ions. This process, ocean acidification, is a future and contemporary concern for aquatic organisms, causing failures in Pacific oyster (<em>Crassostrea gigas</em>) aquaculture.  This experiment determines the effect of elevated <em>p</em>CO<sub>2</sub> on the early development of <em>C. gigas </em>larvae from a wild Pacific Northwest population.  Adults<em> </em>were collected from Friday Harbor, Washington, USA (48°31.7’ N, 12°1.1’ W) and spawned in July 2011. Larvae were exposed to Ambient (400 µatm CO<sub>2</sub>), MidCO<sub>2</sub> (700 µatm), or HighCO<sub>2</sub> (1000 µatm).  After 24 hours, a greater proportion of larvae in the HighCO<sub>2 </sub>treatment were calcified as compared to Ambient. This unexpected observation is attributed to increased metabolic rate coupled with sufficient energy resources.  Oyster larvae raised at HighCO<sub>2</sub> showed evidence of a developmental delay by 3 days post-fertilization, which resulted in smaller larvae that were less calcified. </p>
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