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Structure and dynamics of a benthic invertebrate community in an intertidal area of the Tagus estuary, western Portugal: a six year data series
Silva, G.; Costa, J.L.; Raposo de Almeida, P.; José Costa, M. (2006). Structure and dynamics of a benthic invertebrate community in an intertidal area of the Tagus estuary, western Portugal: a six year data series, in: Queiroga, H. et al. (Ed.) Marine biodiversity: patterns and processes, assessment, threats, management and conservation: Proceedings of the 38th European Marine Biology Symposium, held in Aveiro, Portugal, 8-12 September 2003. Developments in Hydrobiology, 183: pp. 115-128. dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10750-005-1110-8
In: Queiroga, H. et al. (Ed.) (2006). Marine biodiversity: patterns and processes, assessment, threats, management and conservation: Proceedings of the 38th European Marine Biology Symposium, held in Aveiro, Portugal, 8-12 September 2003. Developments in Hydrobiology, 183. Springer: Dordrecht. ISBN 1-4020-4321-X. XV, 353 pp., more
In: Dumont, H.J. (Ed.) Developments in Hydrobiology. Kluwer Academic/Springer: The Hague; London; Boston; Dordrecht. ISSN 0167-8418, more

Available in Authors 
Document type: Conference paper

Keywords
    Benthos; Community composition; Ecological zonation; Environmental factors; Portugal, Tagus R. [Marine Regions]; Marine
Author keywords
    macrofauna; community structure; intertidal habitat; soft-sediments; environmental factors; Portugal

Authors  Top 
  • Silva, G.
  • Costa, J.L.
  • Raposo de Almeida, P.
  • José Costa, M.

Abstract
    The intertidal benthic invertebrate community adjacent to “Parque das Nações”, Tagus estuary, western Portugal, was studied at seven sites between October of 1996 and 2002. Grain size analysis revealed that the area was essentially muddy with total organic matter ranging from 5.4 to 11.4%. Annelida represented more than 85% of the total abundance. The dominant taxa were Oligochaeta, Streblospio shrubsolii, Scrobicularia plana, Hediste diversicolor, Hydrobia ulvae and Cirratulidae. Analysis of abundance revealed high seasonal and interannual heterogeneity, although clear aggregations between winter/spring and summer/autumn sampling periods were detected by multivariate techniques. Paragnathia formica and Dolichopodidae were closely related to winter/spring cluster while S. shrubsolii, Cossura sp., S. plana and Corbula gibba were associated to the summer/autumn aggregation. Although other taxa were abundant in several seasons, constancy in their numbers throughout the year could be observed. Temperature, rainfall and daylight hours were the environmental variables best related to the biological data. Temperature and daylight hours were important for the establishment of the two seasonal aggregations. Rainfall has also shown to be an essential factor on the structuring of this intertidal community, closely related to the abundance increase of Cirratulidade and decrease of Polydora sp., Nephtys spp., Cerastoderma glaucum, Corophium spp. and other Gammaridea. Sediment composition seems to play an important role in changing the community characteristics during the year since some species abundance appear to be favoured by coarser particles and many by fine sediments.

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