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Diversity and structure of nematode communities across mangrove and seagrass vegetations at Gazi Bay, Kenya
C. Bezerra, T.N.; De Mesel, I.; Bouillon, S.; Vanreusel, A.; Moens, T. (2007). Diversity and structure of nematode communities across mangrove and seagrass vegetations at Gazi Bay, Kenya, in: Thirteenth International Meiofauna Conference (THIRIMCO) July 29 - August 3, 2007, Recife, Brazil: Abstract book. pp. [7]
In: (2007). Thirteenth International Meiofauna Conference (THIRIMCO) July 29 - August 3, 2007, Recife, Brazil: Abstract book. Universidade Federal de Pernambuco: Recife. [216] pp., more

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    VLIZ: Open Repository 131758 [ OMA ]
Document types: Conference paper; Summary

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Authors  Top 
  • C. Bezerra, T.N., more
  • De Mesel, I., more
  • Bouillon, S., more

Abstract
    Mangrove benthos has long been assumed to rely primarily on mangrove litter fall, but in recent years, several studies have shown that bacteria, macrobenthos and meiobenthos may preferentially utilize more labile sources such as microphytobenthos and inwelled phytoplankton and seagrass detritus from adjacent shallow waters. The relative importance of these different carbon sources for different consumer taxa, however, remains unclear. We have studied the meiofauna at Gazi Bay, Kenya, based upon samples of a dozen stations from the supralittoral down to the shallow subtidal, covering different mangrove and seagrass vegetations. Nematoda were by far the most abundant taxon throughout the area, followed by Oligochaeta and, depending on the station investigated, Harpacticoida, Polychaeta, Kinorhyncha, and Ostracoda. We identified 135 nematoda genera, with a range of 19 – 60 per station. We hypothesized that densities and genus diversity of nematodes could be linked to sediment organic matter (OM) quantity and quality. For both nematodes and oligochaetes, total densities were indeed positively correlated with OM content, but not with C:N ratio as a measure of OM quality. Nematode genus diversity did not show any clear trend with OM quantity or quality. The most common genus overall was Daptonema , followed by Microlaimus, Desmodora, Metachromadora and Spilophorella.We will present data from a nematode community analysis highlighting shifts in community composition and in ‘dominant’ genera across different vegetation types. Finally, we will present results from a short-term field experiment in which the colonization of fresh mangrove litter fall by nematodes was followed using in situ litter bag incubations.

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