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Biofouling. 2007;23(5-6):357-68.

Mini review: hydrodynamics of larval settlement into fouling communities.

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Department of Integrative Biology, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-3140, USA.


Flowing water delivers planktonic larvae to surfaces, but also dislodges them. This paper reviews experiments in the field and in laboratory flumes, as well as mathematical models, which have revealed how the interaction of ambient water motion with a developing fouling community affects larval settlement. Although mean current velocities across fouling communities in harbours are low, instantaneous velocities can be much higher due to turbulence and to the velocity oscillations of wind chop and ship wakes. As a fouling community develops, its topography becomes more complex and the range of flow microhabitats on the spatial scale of larvae increases. In spite of the prevalence of waves in shallow coastal habitats, and in spite of the importance to settlement of the fine-scale instantaneous velocities encountered by larvae, most studies of flow effects on larval settlement have focused on unidirectional currents and on temporally- and spatially-averaged aspects of the flow.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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