Is pollen morphology of Salix polaris affected by enhanced UV-B irradiation? Results from a field experiment in high Arctic tundra

Dan Yeloff, Peter Blokker, Peter Boelen, Jelte Rozema

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This study tested the hypothesis that the thickness of the pollen wall will increase in response to enhanced UV-B irradiation, by examining, the effect of enhanced UV-B irradiance on the pollen morphology of Sali-v polaris Wahlem. grown in a Field experiment on the Arctic tundra of Svalbard. Measurements of pollen morphology were Conducted by light microscopy on plants grown at two sites, Adventdalen and Isdammen. Salix vegetation Was grown under control, enhanced UV-A, and two enhanced UV-B (simulating 15 and 30% reduction ill the thickness of the stratospheric ozone layer) treatments. At the Adventdalen site, pollen wall thickness significantly increased Under enhanced UV-A and UV-B treatments compared with the control. A thicker pollen wall helps to prevent damage by UV-B radiation of the DNA of the pollen. In contrast, plants at the Isdammen site did not exhibit any significant pollen morphological response to the enhanced UV treatments, The inconsistency in plant response to enhanced UV treatments between the two sites may be explained by greater habitat heterogeneity at the Isdammen site: abiotic soil conditions including nutrient and water availability may also have an influence on pollen morphology.
Original languageDutch
Pages (from-to)770 - 774
Number of pages5
JournalArctic, Antarctic and Alpine Research
Publication statusPublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes

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