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Present-day and future distribution of the deep-sea glass sponge Pheronema carpenteri in a changing ocean

26 May 2023 - Inês Gregório, BIOPOLIS, CIBIO-InBIO/UP | 14h45 | CIBIO’s Auditorium, Campus de Vairão
Present-day and future distribution of the deep-sea glass sponge <i>Pheronema carpenteri</i> in a changing ocean

Sponges are a crucial component of deep-sea benthic communities, greatly contributing to ecosystem function. Some species, such as Pheronema carpenteri, form highly structured and dense aggregations that contribute to increases in local biodiversity. Pheronema aggregations are classified as Vulnerable Marine Ecosystems, being especially sensitive to anthropogenic activities such as bottom-trawling fisheries. The potential impact that climate change will have on these ecosystems remains unclear, although it is expected to influence species’ available suitable habitat and distribution range. In this talk, the predicted distribution of P. carpenteri both for present-day and under different climate change scenarios (RCPs 2.6, 4.5, 8.5) in the North Atlantic will be presented and discussed. An ensemble approach was used to model the species’ suitable habitat at present-day and to make projections into near- and more distant future based on the different scenarios. The outcomes of this work will be a valuable resource to inform policy towards the management and conservation of this vulnerable deep-sea species and the habitat it forms.

Inês Gregório is a BIODIV PhD student based at CIIMAR (Interdisciplinary Centre of Marine and Environmental Research, Porto). She holds a BSc in Biology and MSc in Applied Ecology, both awarded by the University of Aveiro, Portugal. Her current research is focused on combining ecological modelling and genomic approaches to unravel the adaptive potential and genomic resilience of deep-sea habitat-forming sponges.  

[Moderator/Supervisor: Joana R. Xavier, CIIMAR]
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