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Benthic biodiversity indices versus salinity gradient in the southern Baltic Sea
Zettler, M.L.; Schiedek, D.; Bobertz, B. (2007). Benthic biodiversity indices versus salinity gradient in the southern Baltic Sea, in: Devlin, M. et al. (Ed.) Implementation of the Water Framework Directive in European marine waters. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 55(Spec. Issue 1-6): pp. 258-270
In: Devlin, M.; Best, M.; Haynes, D. (Ed.) (2007). Implementation of the Water Framework Directive in European marine waters. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 55(Spec. Issue 1-6). Elsevier: Amsterdam. 297 pp., more
In: Marine Pollution Bulletin. Macmillan: London. ISSN 0025-326X, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Keywords
    Benthos; Oxygen depletion; Salinity gradients; ANE, Southern Baltic [Marine Regions]; Marine

Authors  Top | Dataset 
  • Zettler, M.L., more
  • Schiedek, D., more
  • Bobertz, B.

Abstract
    The need to assess the environmental status of marine and coastal waters according to the EU Water Framework Directive (WFD) encouraged the design of specific biotic indices to evaluate the response of benthic communities to human-induced changes in water quality. In the present study three of these indices, the traditional Shannon Wiener Index (H′) and the more recently published AMBI (AZTI′ Marine Biotic Index) and BQI (Benthic Quality Index), were tested along a salinity gradient in the southern Baltic Sea. The comparison of the three indices demonstrates that in the southern Baltic Sea the ecological quality (EcoQ) classification based on macrozoobenthic communities as indicator greatly depends on the biotic index chosen. We found a significant positive relation between species number, H′, BQI and salinity resulting in EcoQ status of “Bad”, “Poor” or “Moderate” in areas with a salinity value below 10 psu. The AMBI was less dependent on salinity but appear to partly overestimate the EcoQ status. Presently none of these biotic indices appear to be adjusted for application in a gradient system as given in the southern Baltic Sea. A potential approach describing how to overcome this limitation is discussed.

Dataset
  • IOW Macrozoobenthos monitoring Baltic Sea (1980-2005), more

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