Habitat and Interactions

    Salinispora tropica is found exclusively in sediments off the coast of the Bahamas. This is due to the fact that its temperature optimun lies between 15-28 degrees Celsius. In addition it requires a pH 7-12 for survival. The role this bacteria plays in its envronment is uncertain at the moment. Since it has primarily been found on the sediments in the coastline it is unknown how this organism interacts with the environment around it. On very rare occasions it has been isolated from a sponge, however it is unknown if there is any physiological interaction between the two organisms.

    Like many other bacteria S. tropica produces compounds such as antibiotics to compete and kill other bacteria. Other organisms living in the ocean along the coast of the Bahamas include, red and black mangrove, sea cucumbers, many species of coral including fire coral and other stinging coral species, red lionfish, squirrelfish, and many other tropical fish. There are also many species found mainly in this environment including sea fans, The Man of War Jellyfish and the beehive sponge.

Pictured above are the sea fan, nurse shark, and fire coral in that order.

    The research that has been completed on Salinispora tropica has not indicated any symbiosis with other organisms. On very rare occasions it has been found on sponges, however there is no indication of symbiosis. Researching the organisms that may consume it has not been done. However, it is likely that being a bacteria, it is probably consumed by diatoms, putting it at the very bottom of the food web.

Find out how this organism functions in its environment!