Assessing methods for collecting and transferring viable algae from Signy Island, maritime Antarctic, to the United Kingdom
Acquisition and transfer of algae from distant polar locations to research facilities in the northern hemisphere may take several months, at which point the algae may be non-viable and in a deteriorated state. This study explores the effectiveness of 3% (w/v) Benomyl fungicide (Benlate) pre-treatments, on fungal "spoilage", viability and biochemical status of algae collected from terrestrial and freshwater habitats at Signy Island, maritime Antarctic. The results allow recommendations concerning sampling procedures and species selection for the ex-situ study of Antarctic algae to be made. The three algal taxa examined showed that although the fungicide was not necessary for successful transfer of viable specimens, it had a positive effect on viability. Prasiola crispa is suggested as a target organism for future ex-situ physiological studies.
Authors: Johnstone, Claire, Block, William, Benson, Erica E., Day, John G., Staines, Harry, Illian, Janine B.