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The importance of substratum and elevation in recruitment and persistence of ulvoid algal blooms on rocky intertidal shores of the southern Korean coast

  • Sang Rul Park EMAIL logo , Yun Hee Kang , Hyuk Je Lee , Young Wook Ko and Jeong Ha Kim EMAIL logo
From the journal Botanica Marina


Patterns in the recruitment, distribution, and persistence of three Ulva species, which can form green tides, were investigated in relation to surface roughness using artificial substrates on intertidal rocky shores of the southern coast of Korea. The vertical distributions of Ulva pertusa, Ulva linza, and Ulva compressa were well separated: U. compressa usually dominated in the upper zone and U. pertusa and U. linza in the lower zone. Ulva pertusa recruitment was observed during autumn, when inorganic nitrogen concentrations in the surface water column were highest. However, the recruitments of U. linza usually occurred during early winter and spring and that of U. compressa during summer–autumn. Ulva pertusa showed highest settlement on rough surfaces in both zones, whereas this pattern only appeared in the upper zone for U. linza and U. compressa. These results indicate that settlement patterns may be affected by desiccation in the upper zone and waves in the lower zone. Once blooms occurred, U. pertusa persisted for about twice as long as the other two Ulva species, suggesting that U. pertusa played an important role in community change. This is the first documentation of persistence periods related to recruitment in bloom-forming green macroalgae.

Corresponding authors: Sang Rul Park, Department of Marine Life Sciences, Jeju National University, Jeju 690-746, Korea, e-mail: ; and Jeong Ha Kim, Department of Biological Sciences, Sungkyunkwan University, Suwon 440-746, Korea, e-mail:

We thank YJ Bhang, HJ Kim, HA Lee, HY Yun, SH Yang, and SI Kim for their field assistance and laboratory support. Two anonymous reviewers and Dr. Dring provided extremely helpful comments on an earlier version of this manuscript. This research was supported by the Ministry of Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs, Korea (Project title: Long-term change of structure and function in marine ecosystems of Korea), and Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Science, ICT & Future Planning (2012 R1A1A1012429).


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Received: 2013-3-14
Accepted: 2014-1-2
Published Online: 2014-01-31
Published in Print: 2014-02-01

©2014 by Walter de Gruyter Berlin Boston

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