KIMOCC directly supports complex marine culturing experiments in the framework of the main topics of the cluster of excellence "The Future Ocean“. Main foci of supported projects are acclimatization and adaptation of organisms to climate change and interactions of microbial communities and multicellular organisms.
Furthermore, KIMOCC supports marine research by design, implementation and/or quality management of central facilities/infrastructure that serve various culturing experiments.
In a circulation system we continuously culture and study delicate deep-sea mussels Gigantidas childressi since summer 2014. The mussels were collected at a 650m deep cold seep in the Gulf of Mexico. Gigantidas childressi gain the largest part of their energy from methane oxidizing symbiotic bacteria living in their gills.
To feed these bacteria (and the host mussels) we use a gas mixing device (by HTK, Hamburg) that produces air methane mixtures continuously bubbled into the culture basins.
Methane concentrations are logged by a HydroC™ CH4 FT methane flow-throw sensor (by CONTROS, Kiel). Animals are kept in a dark environment at 7°C water temperature.
Two circulation systems in insulated temperature-controlled environments were set-up to culture benthic foraminifera Globobulimina turgida that live in low-oxygen regions of Kristineberg Fjord, Sweden, and play an important role in sedimentary nitrate budget.
In these culture systems low oxygen conditions are realized by artificial air mixtures that are bubbled into the artificial seawater. The systems also include continuous logging of oxygen, temperature, salinity and pH. Peristaltic pumps allow for taking discrete water samples without opening the systems. Low oxygen conditions are realized by artificial air mixtures.
Collaboration: Prof. Dr. Tal Dagan (ZMB, CAU), Dr. Joachim Schönfeld (GEOMAR)
A culture of jellyfish Aurelia aurita was set-up in 2015. The aim of this culture is to continuously produce diverse life-stages of the jellyfish that subsequently can be transferred into and studied under sterile conditions.
By this, the microbiome of Aurelia aurita can be explored.
Collaboration: Prof. Dr. Ruth Schmitz-Streit (CAU), Dr. Nancy Weiland-Bräuer (CAU), Dr. Jamileh Javid Pour (GEOMAR)
In a special cultivation system, which has extensively been tested at DTU Aqua in Copenhagen by Dr. Cornelia Jaspers, we successfully culture the invasive comb jelly Mnemiopsis leidyi throughout several generations.
The water quality is of fundamental importance for this species to assure daily reproduction. Our cultivation system involves a special filtering unit to work with sterile filtered North Sea water and includes a special light table to better visualize and monitor the animals.
For the M. leidyi culture we maintain ca. 1,000L of Acartia tonsa copepod cultures. Our M. leidyi cultures deliver to 5 sub-projects within the Future Ocean Excellence Cluster.
Collaboration: PI: Prof. Dr. Ruth Schmitz-Streit (CAU), Co-PI: Prof. Dr. Thorsten Reusch (GEOMAR),
Contributors: Dr. Cornelia Jaspers, Dr. Jamileh Javidpour, Claas Hiebenthal (GEOMAR).
Cluster Projects related to the cultivation of M. leidyi by KIMOCC:
- Microbiota changes of the invasive comb jelly Mnemiopsis leidyi in native and invaded habitats. PI: Prof. Schmitz-Streit, Dr. N. Weiland-Krämer (CAU)
- Ecology and evolution of a notorious invader: Is invasion success influenced by rapid adaptation to global change? PI: Dr. C. Jaspers (GEOMAR)
- Biodiversity changes: Causes, consequences and management implications (BIO-C3). PI: Prof. T. Reusch; Contributors, Dr. HH Hinrichsen, Dr. C. Jaspers (GEOMAR)
- Regeneration potential of M. leidyi larvae in relation to temperature and food environment. MSc Project K. Bading, Supervision: Dr. J. Javidpour & Dr. C. Jaspers (GEOMAR)
- Growth and reproduction of ctenophore larvae. MSc Project S. Kaehlert, Supervision: Dr. J. Javidpour & Dr. C. Jaspers (GEOMAR)
The monitoring system comprised a HydroC™ underwater CO2 sensor (by CONTROS, installed in autumn 2013) and SeapHOx sensor set (pH, O2, temperature and salinity; by Scripps Institute of Oceanography, installed in autumn 2013).
Furthermore, regularly taken discrete water samples are analyzed for DIC and alkalinity to ground truth sensor data.
Data are regularly updated on the homepage.
Technical data: see manufacturer data www.contros.eu
The plankton extraction devices comprised a 3-step plankton filtering system for extraction of zooplankton and a skimmer system for extraction of phytoplankton.
With this construction, different plankton fractions are harvested from Kiel fjord and can be used as natural feed of Baltic-Sea plankton-feeders cultured in experimental set-ups at GEOMAR.
Status: in test phase.
Collaboration: Prof. Dr. Rüdiger Schulz (CAU), Dr. Catriona Clemmessen-Bockelmann (GEOMAR).