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The ICES North Sea Benthos Project 2000: aims, outcomes and recommendations
Rees, H.L.; Eggleton, J.D.; Rachor, E.; Vanden Berghe, E.; Aldridge, J.N.; Bergman, M.J.N.; Bolam, T.; Cochrane, S.J.; Craeymeersch, J.A.; Degraer, S.; Desroy, N.; Dewarumez, J.-M.; Duineveld, G.C.A.; Essink, K.; Hillewaert, H.; Irion, G.; Kershaw, P.J.; Kröncke, I.; Lavaleye, M.S.S.; Mason, C.; Nehring, S.; Newell, R.; Oug, E.; Pohlmann, T.; Reiss, H.; Robertson, M.; Rumohr, H.; Schratzberger, M.; Smith, R.; van Dalfsen, J.; Van Hoey, G.; Vincx, M.; Willems, W. (2007). The ICES North Sea Benthos Project 2000: aims, outcomes and recommendations. CM Documents - ICES, CM 2007(A:21). ICES: Copenhagen. 22 pp.
Part of: ICES CM Documents - ICES. ICES: Copenhagen. ISSN 1015-4744, more

Available in Authors 
    VLIZ: Open Repository 135146 [ OMA ]
Document type: Conference paper

Keywords
    Benthic communities; Benthic infauna; Ecosystems; Macrobenthos; Sediments; ANE, North Sea [gazetteer]; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Rees, H.L., more
  • Eggleton, J.D.
  • Rachor, E., more
  • Vanden Berghe, E., more
  • Aldridge, J.N.
  • Bergman, M.J.N.
  • Bolam, T.
  • Cochrane, S.J., more
  • Craeymeersch, J.A., more
  • Degraer, S., more
  • Desroy, N.
  • Dewarumez, J.-M., more
  • Duineveld, G.C.A., more
  • Essink, K., more
  • Hillewaert, H., more
  • Irion, G.
  • Kershaw, P.J.
  • Kröncke, I., more
  • Lavaleye, M.S.S.
  • Mason, C.
  • Nehring, S., more
  • Newell, R.
  • Oug, E., more
  • Pohlmann, T.
  • Reiss, H.
  • Robertson, M.
  • Rumohr, H., more
  • Schratzberger, M., more
  • Smith, R.
  • van Dalfsen, J.
  • Van Hoey, G., more
  • Vincx, M., more
  • Willems, W., more

Abstract
    The ICES Study Group on the North Sea Benthos Project 2000 undertook to integrate recent (1999-2002) macrobenthic infaunal and environmental data from various national sources. The main aim was to compare the outcome with that of the ICES North Sea Benthos Survey conducted in 1986, to identify any significant changes and their likely causes. In the process, the exercise yielded valuable lessons for the conduct of international collaborative programmes, as well as insights into the utility of a range of interpretational tools. These are timely in view of increasing requirements for periodic sea-wide assessments of quality status to meet international obligations, such as those under OSPAR, ICES, HELCOM, and EU auspices for European waters. This paper provides an overview of the work which, in contrast to the 1986 survey, was more reliant on the opportunistic gathering of existing data from various sources. This presented special challenges for locating willing contributors, and then for combining and managing the sources effectively, a task which was greatly facilitated by dedicated data management support. The range of interpretational approaches aimed at evaluating spatial patterns and changes over time are summarised and the overall conclusions are presented. North Sea benthic communities appear to exhibit traits both of resilience and adaptability over different scales but continue to be structured by predominantly natural forces. Finally, lessons learnt from the ICES NSBP 2000 initiative are reviewed, and recommendations are made for the conduct of future surveys on comparable scales in the North Sea and elsewhere.

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