Skip to main content
×
×
Home

Growth form in Silurian heliolitid corals: the influence of genetics and environment

  • Graham A. Young (a1) and Colin T. Scrutton (a1)
Abstract

Colony growth form in some Silurian heliolitid corals is analyzed by the measurement of their shape in profile. Data are presented for seven species, Stelliporella parvistella, Heliolites interstinctus, H. megastoma, H. daintreei, H. spongodes, Propora tubulata, and Plasmopora scita from three localities in Gotland, Sweden, and three localities in England. Intraspecific growth-form variation is presented on triangle diagrams. These plots allow variation to be compared between species present at each locality and between localities for each species. Results indicate that the overall potential for growth-form variation is genetically controlled and that levels of response to environmental stimuli may differ markedly between species. Stelliporella parvistella is a very plastic species, the only one developing branching growth in addition to other growth forms. Heliolites interstinctus is much less variable, dominantly tabular, domal, and low bulbous in form, but demonstrates a similar response. Propora tubulata has a tightly constrained bulbous growth form that shows little variation between localities. The other species are represented by few specimens, most of which parallel H. interstinctus. The likely moderating influences of light levels, substrate type, sedimentation rate, energy levels, and other variables on growth-form variation and species range are considered. The main environmental factor including ecophenotypic response is concluded to be sedimentation rate. A close correlation between this factor and growth form in S. parvistella indicates that form in this species is a particularly sensitive indicator of sedimentation rate and substrate conditions. No simple equations can be made between specific environments and one particular growth form in these corals.

Copyright
References
Hide All
Barnes, D. J. 1973. Growth in colonial scleractinians. Bulletin of Marine Science 23:280298.
Bassett, M. G. 1974. Review of the stratigraphy of the Wenlock Series in the Welsh Borderland and South Wales. Palaeontology 17:745777.
Bassett, M. G., Kaljo, D., and Teller, L. 1989. The Baltic region. In Holland, C. H., and Bassett, M. G. (eds.), A Global Standard for the Silurian System. National Museum of Wales, Geological Series 9:158170.
Best, M. B., Boekschoten, G. J., and Oosterbaan, A. 1984. Species concept and ecomorph variation in living and fossil Scleractinia. Palaeontogrpahica Americana 54:7079.
Birenheide, R. 1963. Sstandortwechsel von korallen aus dem Eifelmeer (Environment changes in corals from the Eifel Sea). Natur und Museum 93(10):405409.
Bjerstedt, T. W., and Feldmann, R. M. 1985. Stromatoporoid paleosynecology in the Lucas Dolostone (Middle Devonian) on Kelleys Island, Ohio. Journal of Paleontology 59:10331061.
Budd, A. F., Johnson, K. G., and Edwards, J. C. 1989. Miocene coral assemblages in Anguilla, B.W.I., and their implications for the interpretation of vertical succession on fossil reefs. Palaios 4:264275.
Butler, A. J. 1939. The stratigraphy of the Wenlock Limestone of Dudley. Quarterly Journal of the Geological Society of London 95:3774.
Cherns, L. 1983. The Hemse Eke Boundary: facies relationships in the Ludlow Series of Gotland, Sweden. Sveriges Geologiska Undersökning, Avhandlingar och Uppsatser, Serie C number 800, Årsbok 77, number 2.
Coates, A. G., and Jackson, J.B.C. 1987. Clonal growth, algal symbiosis, and reef formation by corals. Paleobiology 13:363378.
Cockbain, A. E. 1984. Stromatoporoids from the Devonian reef complexes, Canning Basin, Western Australia. Geological Survey of Western Australia, Bulletin 129.
Colter, V. S. 1956. On Heliolites caespitosa Salter. Geological Magazine 93:229232.
Dodd, J. R., and Stanton, R. J. Jr. 1981. Paleoecology, Concepts and Applications. John Wiley and Sons; New York.
Foster, A. B. 1979. Phenotypic plasticity in the reef corals Montastraea annularia (Ellis & Solander) and Siderastrea siderea (Ellis & Solander). Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology 39:2554.
Gattuso, J.-P. 1985. Features of depth effects on Stylophora pistillata, an hermatypic coral in the Gulf of Aqaba (Jordan, Red Sea). Proceedings of the Fifth International Coral Reef Congress, Tahiti 6:95100.
Gibson, M. A., and Broadhead, T. W. 1989. Species-specific growth responses of favositid corals to soft-bottom substrates. Lethaia 22:287299.
Goreau, T. F. 1963. Calcium carbonate deposition by coralline algae and corals in relation to their roles as reef builders. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 109:127167.
Graus, R. R., and Macintyre, I. G. 1982. Variation in growth forms of the reef coral Montastrea annularis (Ellis and Solander): a quantitative evaluation of growth response to light distribution using computer simulation. Smithsonian Contributions to the Marine Sciences 12:441464.
Hill, D. 1981. Rugosa and Tabulata. In Teichert, C. (ed.), Treatise on Invertebrate Paleontology, Part F, Coelenterata, Supplement 1. Geological Society of America and University of Kansas Press; Lawrence, Kansas.
Hubbard, J.A.E.B., and Pocock, Y. P. 1972. Sediment rejection by recent scleractinian corals: a key to palaeo-environmental reconstruction. Geologische Rundschau, Bd. 61:598626.
Hunter, C. L. 1985. Assessment of clonal diversity and population structure of Porites compressa (Cnidaria, Scleractinia). Proceedings of the Fifth International Coral Reef Congress, Tahiti 6:6974.
Jackson, J.B.C. 1979. Morphological strategies of sessile animals. Pp. 499555. In Larwood, G. P., and Rosen, B. R. (eds.), Biology and Systematics of Colonial Organisms. Academic Press; London.
James, N. P. 1979. Reefs. Pp. 121132. In Walker, R. G. (ed.), Facies Models. Geoscience Canada Reprint Series 1. Geolgoical Association of Canada; Toronto.
James, N. P. 1983. Reef environment. American Association of Petroleum Geologists, Memoir 33:345440.
James, N. P. 1984. Reefs. Pp. 229244. In Walker, R. G. (ed.), Facies Models. Second Edition, Geoscience Canada Reprint Series 1. Geological Association of Canada; Toronto.
Jaubert, J. 1977. Light, metabolism and growth forms of the hermatypic scleractinian coral Synaraea convexa Verrill in the lagoon of Moorea (French Polynesia). Proceedings of the Third International Coral Reef Symposium 1:484488.
Kershaw, S. 1981. Stromatoporoid growth form and taxonomy in a Silurian biostrome, Gotland. Journal of Paleontology 55:12841295.
Kershaw, S. 1984. Patterns of stromatoporoid growth in level-bottom environments. Palaeontology 27:113130.
Kershaw, S., and Riding, R. 1978. Parametrization of stromatoporoid shape. Lethaia 11:233242.
Kissling, D. L. 1973. Circumrotatory growth form in Recent and Silurian corals. Pp. 4358. In Boardman, R. S., Cheetham, A. H., and Oliver, W. A. Jr. (eds.), Animal Colonies: Development and Function through Time. Dowden, Hutchinson, and Ross; Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania.
Klovan, J. E. 1964. Facies analysis of the Redwater reef complex, Alberta, Canada. Bulletin of Canadian Petroleum Geologists 12:1100.
Laufeld, S. 1974. Reference localities for palaeontology and geology in the Silurian of Gotland. Sveriges Geologiska Undersökning. Series C, No. 705.
Lecompte, M. 1970. Die Riffe im Devon der Ardennen und ihre Bildungsbedingungen. Geologica et Palaeontologica 4:2570.
Leleshus, V. L. 1985. K evolyutsii yestestvennoy prodolzhitel 'nosti zhizni korallovykh polipov v paleozoye Sredney Azii [Evolution of the natural life span of coral polyps during the Paleozoic of central Asia]. Paleontological Journal 1985(2):1721.
Lowenstam, H. A. 1957. Niagaran reefs in the Great Lakes area. Geological Society of America, Memoir 67:215248.
Manten, A. A. 1961. Korallengestalten als Kennzeichen des Milieus. Geologische Rundschau 51:663671.
Manten, A. A. 1971. Silurian Reefs of Gotland. Developments in Sedimentology, 13. Elsevier; Amsterdam.
Oschmann, W. 1989. Growth and environmental hazards of the Upper Jurassic colonial coral Actinastrea matheyi (Koby) from Portugal. Paläontologische Zeitschrift 63:193205.
Pandolfi, J. M. 1984. Environmental influence on growth form in some massive tabulate corals from the Hamilton Group (Middle Devonian) of New York State. Palaeontographica Americana 54:538542.
Pandolfi, J. M., and Burke, C. D. 1989a. Environmental distribution of colony growth form in the favositid Pleurodictyum americanum. Lethaia 22:6984.
Pandolfi, J. M., and Burke, C. D. 1989b. Shape analysis of two sympatric coral species: implications for taxonomy and evolution. Lethaia 22:183193.
Philcox, M. E. 1971. Growth forms and role of colonial coelenterates in reefs of the Gower Formation (Silurian), Iowa. Journal of Paleontology 45:338346.
Powell, J. H. 1980. Paleoecology and taxonomy of some Wenlock tabulate corals and stromatoporoids. Unpublished Ph.D. dissertation, University of Newcastle upon Tyne, England.
Preobrazhensky, B. V. 1980. Morphogenesis in corals: methodological aspect. Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 25(3-4):473476.
Ratcliffe, K. T. 1988. Oncoids as environmental indicators in the Much Wenlock Limestone Formation of the English Midlands. Journal of the Geological Society, London 145:117124.
Riding, R. 1983. Composition, structure and environmental setting of Silurian bioherms and biostromes in Northern Europe. Pp. 4183. In Toomey, D. F. (ed.), European Fossil Reef Models. Special Publication 30. Society of Economic Paleontologists and Mineralogists; Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Schuhmacher, H., and Zibrowius, H. 1985. What is hermatypic? A redefinition of ecological groups in corals and other organisms. Coral Reefs 4:19.
Scoffin, T. P. 1971. The conditions of growth of the Wenlock reefs of Shropshire. Sedimentology 17:173219.
Scrutton, C. T. 1989. Intracolonial and intraspecific variation in tabulate corals. Association of Australasian Palaeontologists, Memoir 8:3343.
Shergold, J. H., and Bassett, M. G. 1970. Facies and faunas at the Wenlock/Ludlow boundary of Wenlock Edge, Shropshire. Lethaia 3:113142.
Stearn, C. W. 1982. The shapes of Paleozoic and modern reef-builders: a critical review. Paleobiology 8:228241.
Stearn, C. W. 1984. Growth forms and macrostructural elements of the coralline sponges. Palaeontographica Americana 54:315325.
Stearn, C. W., and Riding, R. 1973. Forms of the hydrozoan Millepora on a Recent coral reef. Lethaia 6:187199.
Stel, J. H. 1978. Environment and quantitative morphology of some Silurian tabulates from Gotland. Scripta Geologica 47.
Struve, W. 1961. Das Eifeler Korallen-Meer. Der Aufschluß Sonderheit 10 (Die nördlicher Eifel):81107.
Tsien, H. H. 1971. The Middle and Upper Devonian reef-complexes of Belgium. Petroleum Geology of Taiwan 8:119173.
Tsien, H. H. 1981. Ancient reefs and reef carbonates. Proceedings of the Fourth International Coral Reef Symposium, Manila 1:601609.
Veron, J.E.N., and Pichon, M. 1976. Scleractinia of eastern Australia, part 1: Families Thamnasteriidae, Astrocoeniidae, Pocilloporidae. Volume 1. Monograph Series. Australian Institute of Marine Science; Townsville, Australia.
Veron, J.E.N., and Pichon, M. 1982. Scleractinia of eastern Australia, part 4: Family Poritidae. Volume 5. Monograph Series. Australian Institute of Marine Science; Townsville, Australia.
Willis, B. L., and Ayre, D. J. 1985. Asexual reproduction and genetic determination of growth form in the coral Pavona cactus: biochemical, genetic and immunogenic evidence. Oecologia 65:516556.
Young, G. A. 1988. Paleoecology, biostratigraphy, and systematics of Silurian tabulate corals from the Chaleur Bay region, eastern Canada. Unpublished Ph.D. dissertation, University of New Brunswick. Fredericton, Canada.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Paleobiology
  • ISSN: 0094-8373
  • EISSN: 1938-5331
  • URL: /core/journals/paleobiology
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed