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      Carbon Sources of Sediment and Epifaunal Food Sources in a Tropical Mangrove Forest in North Sulawesi, Indonesia

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          The stable isotope ratios of nitrogen (δ 15N) and carbon (δ 13C) were applied in this study to analyze sediment carbon sources and primary food sources of epifauna in an oceanic mangrove forest in tropical North Sulawesi, Indonesia. Proportional contribution of mangrove-derived carbon to the food sources was compared among epifauna belonging to different feeding guilds. The sediment in the mangrove site with a depleted δ 13C signature (−28.02‰ ± 0.24‰) mainly consists of mangrove-derived carbon. Analysis using Bayesian stable isotope mixing model in the R program shows that mangrove-derived carbon can dominate the food sources of a majority of the epifauna (11 out of the total 18 species), especially 2 sesarmid crabs Parasesarma semperi and Sesarma sp., crab Epixanthus dentatus, and snails Terebralia sulcata and Optediceros breviculum, which belong to various feeding guilds. Mangrove-derived carbon has a proportional contribution to the food sources of fiddle crab Tubuca coarctata and 3 littorinid snails ( Littoraria spp.) close to that of suspended particulate organic matter. Three planktophagous bivalve species ( Anadara antiquata, Anadara sp. and Callista erycina) were found to mainly feed on seagrass-derived materials. Mean proportional contributions of mangrove-derived carbon to the food sources were 50.15%, 59.60%, 46.20% and 27.58% for the carnivorous, omnivorous, phytophagous and planktophagous groups, respectively. The results suggest that mangrove-derived carbon can directly ( via grazing plant tissues) or indirectly ( via deposit feedings) make an important contribution to the food sources of epifauna in the oceanic mangrove forest where the allochthonous input of organic carbon is low.

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          Author and article information

          Journal of Ocean University of China
          Science Press and Springer (China )
          02 September 2020
          01 October 2020
          : 19
          : 5
          : 1169-1176
          1College of Marine Life Sciences, Ocean University of China, Qingdao 266000, China
          2Third Institute of Oceanography, Ministry of Natural Resources, Xiamen 361005, China
          3Research Center for Oceanography, Indonesian Institute of Sciences, Jakarta 11048, Indonesia
          4Observation and Research Station of Coastal Wetland Ecosystem in Beibu Bay, Ministry of Natural Resources, Beihai 536015, China
          Author notes
          *Corresponding author: CHEN Guangcheng, E-mail: gc.chen@
          Copyright © Ocean University of China, Science Press and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2020.

          The copyright to this article, including any graphic elements therein (e.g. illustrations, charts, moving images), is hereby assigned for good and valuable consideration to the editorial office of Journal of Ocean University of China, Science Press and Springer effective if and when the article is accepted for publication and to the extent assignable if assignability is restricted for by applicable law or regulations (e.g. for U.S. government or crown employees).

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