Effects of Salinity on Contraction, Expansion, and Locomotion Behaviors of the Sea Anemone Anthopleura elegantissima
Ho, Ching-Hsin (Glory)
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Intertidal organisms have been investigated heavily in studies to understand how climate change may affect marine ecosystems, communities, and even individual species. Climate change may increase the environmental stresses of intertidal such as salinity fluctuation. The sea anemone Anthopleura elegantissima is one of the abundant intertidal organisms along the west coast of North America. I examined whether A. elegantissima changes certain behaviors (contraction, expansion, and locomotion) under different salinity conditions. The results suggest that this sea anemone is better adapted to low salinity conditions than high salinities in response to disturbance. Individuals closed up faster in high salinity, and opened up slower in both low and high salinity conditions than in normal salinity. This species preferred to stay in low and high salinity conditions rather than being exposed to the air.