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Comparative evaluation of the trophic performance of sea anemones (Cnidaria; Actiniaria): morphology and metabarcoding

Grant number: 22/02519-2
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): June 01, 2022
Effective date (End): May 31, 2023
Field of knowledge:Physical Sciences and Mathematics - Oceanography - Biological Oceanography
Principal researcher:Sérgio Nascimento Stampar
Grantee:Júlia Melo Molina
Home Institution: Faculdade de Ciências e Letras (FCL-ASSIS). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Assis. Assis , SP, Brazil

Abstract

The trophic performance of Cnidaria species is an issue for several approaches, especially in species of the Medusozoa clade. However, the variation of eating habits in different regions and their subsequent characterization in food chains are practically non-existent. Thus, this project aims to analyze and compare the trophic activity of four species of sea anemones, Actinia bermudensis, Anemonia sargassensis, Bunodosoma caissarum and Bunodosoma cangicum, in two different locations. Due to the scarcity of studies focusing on the feeding behavior of anthozoans, mainly of tropical species, the dietary and behavioral characteristics of the trophic ecology of the group, which are fundamental for their development, reproduction and survival, are poorly understood. In this study, therefore, using metabarcoding and morphological analysis techniques, 20 specimens of each species will be longitudinally dissected for analysis of the contents of the gastrovascular cavity and DNA analysis by metabarcoding method. From the results obtained, it is expected to adequately understand the variation of the feeding behavior of the aforementioned species regarding the influence of the locality and the species itself in its trophic performance.

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