|Sampling design of monitoring programmes for marine benthos: a comparison between the use of fixed versus randomly selected stations|
van der Meer, J. (1997). Sampling design of monitoring programmes for marine benthos: a comparison between the use of fixed versus randomly selected stations. J. Sea Res. 37(1-2): 167-179
In: Journal of Sea Research. Elsevier/Netherlands Institute for Sea Research: Amsterdam; Den Burg. ISSN 1385-1101, more
Three possible sampling designs for monitoring programmes were compared for both bias and variance of the associated estimators of year-to-year change. The statistical power of the accompanying univariate analysis of variance models was also analysed. The analysis was based on species abundance data from monitoring programmes for soft-bottom marine benthos in The Netherlands. The first design, with random selection of stations in each year, revealed larger variance and smaller power than the second design, in which stations are sampled randomly in the first year and revisited in succeeding years. The third design, with fixed non-randomly selected stations, yielded the largest power, but gives biased estimates of the year-to-year changes. These results suggest the following rule-of-thumb for monitoring programmes focusing on the abundance of marine benthic species: revisit many randomly selected stations, and make little effort per station.