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Biota and abiotic environment in the Westerschelde estuary
Heip, C.H.R. (1988). Biota and abiotic environment in the Westerschelde estuary, in: Hummel, H. et al. (Ed.) Hydrobiology and chemistry of the Schelde and Westerschelde: proceedings of the Schelde symposium (May 1987, Terneuzen, The Netherlands). pp. 31-34
In: Hummel, H. et al. (Ed.) (1988). Hydrobiology and chemistry of the Schelde and Westerschelde: proceedings of the Schelde symposium (May 1987, Terneuzen, The Netherlands). Delta Institute for Hydrobiological Research: Yerseke. VI, 67 pp., more

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Keywords
    Marine; Brackish water; Fresh water

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  • Heip, C.H.R., more

Abstract
    An estuary such as the Westerschelde is a highly dynamic environment, both on an ecological time scale where climatic and hydrodynamic forces, mainly the tides, shape a very variable environment and on a geological, evolutionary time scale, since estuaries are young and very unstable habitats. Low species diversity and high adaptability of the resident animal and plant populations are characteristic of estuarine habitats where large fluctuations in submersion, salinity, temperature etc. occur. The existing biota are therefore resilient to environmental stress and effects of the important influx of anorganic and organic pollutants from the river Schelde and its tributaries on the biota in the estuary are not easy to detect.

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