Plenary Speakers

Andrew Thurber

When the small paint the big picture: Using microbes to identify a hydrothermal habitat at the Chilean Triple Junction

The deep sea of Southern Chile remains largely unknown yet hosts one of the few spots on the planet where hydrothermal vent and cold seep habitats may co-occur. The Chilean Triple Junction was recently discovered to host warm sediment at 2900 meters water depth in close proximity to a methane seep. While this may present a model system to study cross vent and seep synergies, there were no obvious surface manifestations of the underlying hydrothermal activity. This begs the question whether the community present was impacted by the warm fluid and associated chemoautotrophic energy. Here we answer that question through analysis of the microbial community structure. Read more...

Sylvie Marylène Gaudron

A reflection on reproductive adaptation to ephemeral and deep-sea habitats in symbiotic bivalve’s species

Bivalves are among the dominant fauna occurring at deep-sea cold seeps, hydrothermal vents and organic falls worldwide. This is due to their ability to establish symbioses with sulphur- and/or methane-oxidizing bacteria, or with cellulolytic bacteria which produce or fragment organic compounds, that sustain the carbon supply to their hosts. Full picture of their reproductive cycle from the emission of the gametes, the larval stages (dispersal), the settlement and the reproduction of the adults (maturity and breeding) is still not fully understood in some of these species. We propose here to present some recent findings on reproduction. Read more...

Benjamin Grupe

Metacommmunities and patterns of diversity in chemosynthetic ecosystems

Over the past decade, metacommunity ecology has been used to examine mechanisms influencing community assembly and the maintenance of biodiversity in patchy communities. This framework is suited to consideration of both local interactions and environmental influences within communities, and spatial processes such as dispersal that link patches across space. Chemosynthetic ecosystems are patchy and hierarchical in nature and fit well into this conceptual metacommunity framework. We have repeated substrate colonization experiments at methane seeps off Costa Rica and Oregon, and hydrothermal vents at Juan de Fuca. Read more...

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