Ecological interactions between zoo- and phytobenthos with regard to defense-mechanisms against grazing pressure

Updated 2002-02-14

Benthic macroalgae communities of the arctic ocean provide habitat, protection, nursery and nutrition to a large number of invertebrates. In contrast to temperate and tropical regions the basic ecological interactions between zoo- and phytobenthos of the Arctic are little understood. Therefore this project for the first time investigates biological and chemical interactions between invertebrates and macroalgae on Spitsbergen/Svalbard (Koldewey Station) with special emphasis on defense mechanisms against grazing pressure. Initial diving-investigations will map the invertebrate fauna which is associated with the macroalgae; the following feeding-experiments with herbivorous animals aim to selectively identify generalists, generalists with preference or specialists. Additional bioassays serve to reveal structural and/or chemical properties of those plants, which affect a specific impact on the grazing of herbivores. Our investigations on the chemical protection of the algae against grazing focus on the basic mechanisms and the chemical structure of potent secondary metabolites carried out in cooperation with natural product chemists.

Time frame

Project time span
2001 - 2050
Data collection
2001 -
Data processing
not specified
Data reporting
not specified

Contact information

Contact person
Wilhelm Hagen
Universität Bremen Fachbereich 2, Marine Zoologie Postfach 330440 D-28334 Bremen
+49 421 218 7245
+49 421 218 2285
Other project contacts
Christian Wiencke, Ulf Karsten, Hendrik Wessels,

Parameters and Media

Parameter groups measured/observed/modelled
Biological effects
Media sampled/studied/modelled
Algae (algae, phytoplankton)
Marine benthos


Regions studied
Biological effects
Biological effects

Data availability

Samples/specimens archived in specimen banks?

Methods & Procedures

Not specified

Additional Information

Is this a bi- AND multi-lateral project (i.e. a project involving cooperation between different countries)?
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