|The role of trophic and oceanographic conditions in the ecology of deep-sea nematodes = De rol van trofische en oceanografische conditiesin de ecologie van diepzeenematoden|
Guilini, K. (2011). The role of trophic and oceanographic conditions in the ecology of deep-sea nematodes = De rol van trofische en oceanografische condities
in de ecologie van diepzeenematoden. PhD Thesis. Ghent University. Marine Biology Research Group: Ghent. ISBN 978-90-90265-36-0. 280 pp.
This PhD study provides a detailed analysis of structural and functional aspects of the ecology of free-living nematodes in different deep-sea ecosystems. The role of food and oceanographic conditions was studied by means of field observations and experiments. Performed experiments are innovative and revealed new insights in deep-sea nematode feeding behavior, rates and mechanisms of colonization, and the role of small-scale disturbances in establishing and maintaining nematode diversity. Field observations from both photosynthetic and chemosynthetic driven ecosystems further revealed the role of both bacteria and phytodetritus in the diet of deep-sea nematodes and provided insights in the influence of oceanographic conditions on both the structure and function of nematode communities. Obtained data rendered post-hoc explanations from which new testable ideas were formulated. Considering the great importance of understanding dynamics of food consumption in different deep-sea ecosystems in order to understand the global carbon cycle and the impact of potential future climate changes, this PhD thesis may serve as pioneer work on which future research can build.