The long term research program ICECUBE (Coastal Underwater Benthic Ecosystems) provides fundamental information on the structural and functional biodiversity of Antarctic coastal benthic ecosystems. The Antarctic marine ecosystem is under threat as a result of global climate change and other anthropogenic influences. Characterising the structure and function of benthic ecosystems and determining ... their relationships to key environmental factors across a range of spatial and biological scales is essential to an improved understanding of Antarctic ecology and wise management of the Antarctic coastal zone. Several sites in the Ross Sea Region, including Cape Evans, New Harbour, Dunlop Island, Spike Cape, Granite Harbour and two sites in Terra Nova Bay, Gerlache Inlet and Tethys Bay were investigated. Dive surveys to characterise the physical habitat, quantify biodiversity (epifauna and flora) of the seafloor, collect sediment cores to determine grain size, stable isotope struture, benthic chlorophyll concentration, algal species composition and relative abundance, collect sea-ice algal cores and make measurements on water temperature, water column chlorophyll fluorescence and changes in photosynthetically available radiation are part of the data collection from these sites. This information will be used to develop models of biodiversity response over multiple spatial scales and levels of biological organisation, that will enable us to better-predict how this valuable ecosystem will respond to trace the movement of primary production through the benthic community.
Thrush, S.F., Hewitt, J.E., Cummings, V.J., Norkko, A. And Chiantore, M. 2010. ß-Diversity and species accumulation in Antarctic coastal benthos: Influence of habitat, distance and productivity on ecological connectivity. PLOS One 5(7): e11899 doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0011899
Norkko, A. Thrush, S.F. Cummings, V.J. Funnell, G.A. Schwarz, A.-M. Andrew, N.L. Hawes, I. Ecological role of ... Phyllophora antarctica drift accumulations in coastal soft-sediment communities of McMurdo Sound, Antarctica. Polar biology 27: 482-494, 2004.
Norkko, J. Norkko, A. Thrush, S.F. Cummings, V.J. Detecting growth under environmental extremes: Spatial and temporal patterns in nucleic acid ratios in two Antarctic bivalves. Journal of experimental marine biology and ecology 326: 144-156, 2005.
Cummings, V.J. Assessing biodiversity on the Antarctic sea floor. Water and atmosphere 11(3): 10-12, 2003.
Cummings, V.J. Marine ecosystems: life beneath the ice. Water and Atmosphere 13(3): 24-25, 2005.
Cummings, V. Thrush, S. Norkko, A. Andrew, N. Hewitt, J. Funnell, G. Schwarz, A.-M. Accounting for local scale variability in benthos: implications for future assessments of latitudinal trends in the coastal Ross Sea. Antarctic science 18(4): 633-644, 2006.
Cummings, V.J. Report from IceCUBE. Water and Atmosphere16(1): 4, 2008.
Norkko, J. Indicators of short-term growth in bivalves: detecting environmental change across ecological scales. Ph.D., University of Auckland, 2005.
Norkko, A. Thrush, S.F. Cummings, V.J. Gibbs, M.M. Andrew, N.L. Norkko, J. Schwarz, A-M. Trophic structure of coastal Antarctic food webs associated with changes in sea ice and food supply. Ecology 88: 2810-2820, 2007.
Schwarz, A-M. Hawes, I. Andrew, N. Norkko, A. Cummings, V. Thrush, S. Macroalgal photosynthesis near southern global limit for growth; Cape Evans, Ross Sea, Antarctica. Polar biology 26: 789-799, 2003.
Schwarz, A.-M. 2003. Life in the dark: plant growth beneath the sea ice. Water and atmosphere 11(3): 14-15, 2003.
Schwarz, A.-M. Hawes, I. Andrew, N. Mercer, S. Cummings, V. Thrush, S. Primary production potential of non-geniculate coralline algae at Cape Evans, Ross Sea, Antarctica. Marine ecology progress series 294: 131-140, 2005.
Thrush, S. Dayton, P. Cattaneo-Vietti, R. Chiantore, M. Cummings, V. Andrew, N. Hawes, I. Kim, S. Kvitek, R. Schwarz, A.-M. Broad-scale factors influencing the biodiversity of coastal benthic communities of the Ross Sea. Deep-sea research II 53: 959-971, 2006.
De Domenico, F., Chiantore, M., Buongiovanni, S., Paola Ferranti, M., Ghione, S., Thrush, S., Cummings, V., Hewitt, J., Kroeger, K., Cattaneo-Vietti, R. 2006. Latitude versus local effects on echinoderm assemblages along the Victoria Land coast, Ross Sea, Antarctica. Antarctic Science 18(4): 655-662.
Grotti, M., Soggia, F., Lagomarsino, C., Dalla Riva, S., Groessler, W. And Francesconi, K.A. Natural variability and distribution of trace elements in marine organisms from Antarctic coastal environments. Antarctic Science 20:39-51, 2008.
Guidetti, M. Marcato, S. Chiantore, M. Patarnello, T. Albertelli, G. Cattaneo-Vietti, R.Exchange between populations of Adamussium colbecki (Mollusca: Bivalvia) in the Ross Sea. Antarctic science 18(4): 645-653, 2006.
Sutherland DL. Surface-associated diatoms from marine habitats at Cape Evans, Antarctica, including the first record of living Eunotogramma marginopunctatum. Polar Biology DOI 10.1007/s00300-008-0426-z, 2008.
Berkman, P.A. Cattaneo-Vietti , R. Chiantore, M. Howard-Williams, C. Cummings, V. Kvitek, R. 2005 Marine research in the Latitudinal Gradient Project along Victoria Land, Antarctica. Scientia Marina 69: 57-63
Thrush, S.F. 2003 Voyage on the Italica. Water and atmosphere 11(3): 12
Cummings, V.J. 2007. Antarctic coastal marine ecosystems (ICECUBE). Progress Report for Ministry of Fisheries Research Project ZBD2006/03, 21p.