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Sediment segregation by biodiffusing bivalves
Montserrat, F.; Van Colen, C.; Provoost, P.; Milla, B.; Ponti, M.; Van den Meersche, K.; Ysebaert, T.J.; Herman, P.M.J. (2009). Sediment segregation by biodiffusing bivalves, in: Van Colen, C. (2009). Tidal flat macrobenthos ecology, recolonisation and succession = Ecologie, herkolonisatie en successie van het macrobenthos in slikken. pp. 145-174
In: Van Colen, C. (2009). Tidal flat macrobenthos ecology, recolonisation and succession = Ecologie, herkolonisatie en successie van het macrobenthos in slikken. PhD Thesis. Universiteit Gent; Faculteit Wetenschappen; Afdeling Mariene Biologie: Gent. ISBN 978-90-902416-6-1. 300 pp., more

Also published as
  • Montserrat, F.; Van Colen, C.; Provoost, P.; Milla, B.; Ponti, M.; Van den Meersche, K.; Ysebaert, T.J.; Herman, P.M.J. (2009). Sediment segregation by biodiffusing bivalves. Est., Coast. and Shelf Sci. 83(4): 379-391. dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ecss.2009.04.010, more

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Keywords
    Bioturbation; Cohesive sediment; Cohesive sediments; Deposition; Erosion; Image analysis; Intertidal flats; Mud; Sand; ANE, Netherlands, Westerschelde, PaulinaPolder; Marine
Author keywords
    intertidal; cohesive; sediment; sand; mud; erosion; deposition; luminophores; image analysis; bioturbation; ecosystem engineering; Ecosystem engineering; Intertidal; Intertidaal; Luminophores; Ecosystem engineering; Intertidal; Intertidaal; Luminophores

Authors  Top 
  • Montserrat, F., more
  • Van Colen, C., more
  • Provoost, P., more
  • Milla, B.
  • Ponti, M.
  • Van den Meersche, K., more
  • Ysebaert, T.J., more
  • Herman, P.M.J., more

Abstract
    The selective processing of sediment fractions (sand and mud; > 63 µm and = 63 µm median grain size) by macrofauna was assessed using two size classes of inert, UV-fluorescent sediment fraction tracers (luminophores). The luminophores were applied to the sediment surface in 16 m2 replicated plots, defaunated and control, and left to be reworked by infauna for 32 days. As the macrofaunal assemblage in the ambient sediment and the control plots was dominated by the common cockle Cerastoderma edule, this species was used in an additional mesocosm experiment. The diversity, abundance and biomass of the defaunated macrobenthic assemblage did not return to control values within the experimental period. Both erosion threshold and bed elevation increased in the defaunated plots as a response to the absence of macrofauna and an increase in microphytobenthos growth. In the absence of macrobenthos, we observed an accretion of 7 mm sediment, containing ca. 60% mud. Image analysis of the vertical distribution of the different luminophore size classes showed that the cockles preferentially mobilised fine material from the sediment, thereby rendering it less muddy and effectively increasing the sand: mud ratio. Luminophore profiles and budgets of the mesocosm experiment under “no waves-no current” conditions support the field data very well.

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