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Main characteristics of the boundary layer macrofauna in the English Channel
Dauvin, J.-C.; Vallet, C.; Mouny, P.; Zouhiri, S. (2000). Main characteristics of the boundary layer macrofauna in the English Channel. Hydrobiologia 426: 139-156. hdl.handle.net/10.1007/978-94-011-4148-2_13
In: Hydrobiologia. Springer: The Hague. ISSN 0018-8158, more
Peer reviewed article  

Also published as
  • Dauvin, J.-C.; Vallet, C.; Mouny, P.; Zouhiri, S. (2000). Main characteristics of the boundary layer macrofauna in the English Channel, in: Liebezeit, G. et al. (Ed.) Life at Interfaces and Under Extreme Conditions: Proceedings of the 33rd European Marine Biology Symposium, Wilhelmshaven, Germany, 7-11 September 1998. Hydrobiologia, 426(1-3): pp. 139-156, more

Available in Authors 
Document type: Conference paper

Keywords
    Abundance; Benthic boundary layer; Biomass; ANE, English Channel [Marine Regions]; Marine
Author keywords
    Macrofauna; Suprabenthic fauna

Authors  Top 
  • Dauvin, J.-C., more
  • Vallet, C.
  • Mouny, P.
  • Zouhiri, S.

Abstract
    Four hundred and thirty two suprabenthic hauls with a modified Macer-GIROQ sledge were taken over the period 1988-1996. Fifteen sites within the English Channel were sampled from the Roscoff and Plymouth waters to the Dover Strait, including the Bay of Morlaix, Bay of Saint Brieuc, the Bay of Seine and the Seine Estuary. The main characteristics of the Benthic Boundary Layer (BBL) macrofauna in the English Channel were elucidated from these data. BBL macrofauna was found over the whole water column sampled (10-150 m). Firstly, the number of species collected was very high (up to 116 species for five hauls) except in the Seine estuary. Numerically, mysids were the dominant group of organisms collected with the sledge, followed by amphipods, cumaceans, isopods and decapods. Abundance and biomass of the fauna were very high in the Seine estuary, especially in the mesohaline and oligohaline zones (maximum >216 000 ind. 100 m-3; >200 g AFDW 100 m-3) where the specialised mysids Neomysis integer and Mesopodopsis slabberi occurred in very high abundance. At other sites, the abundance and biomass were moderate(100-10 000 ind. 100 m-3; 15-2000 mg AFDW 100 m-3). Abundance reached its maximum when mysids or swarms of amphipods of the genus Apherusa were collected, and during the reproduction of the amphipods of the genus Ampelisca, as in June in the Bay of Morlaix. The number of species, abundance and biomass showed seasonal changes in all sites with, in general, lowest values in winter or spring, and highest values in autumn. For the open sea sites, two main geographical gradients were identified: i) in spring, a higher number of species in the western part of the Channel compared with the eastern part of the Channel and, in autumn, a higher number of species in the eastern part of the Channel compared with the western part, and ii) an increasing density gradient from west to east at spring and a decreasing gradient from west to east during the autumn. The suprabenthic fauna of the Channel can be considered as a unique community including three kinds of species: (i) good swimmer species which were common at all the time and all sites: e.g. Anchialina agilis, Gastrosaccus spp., Haplostylus spp. and Apherusa spp., (ii) species present at all sites only at night: e.g. Atylus vedlomensis, Megaluropus agilis, Melphipidella macra, Orchomenella nana, Pseudocuma longicornis, Schistomysis ornata and Synchelidium maculatum, and iii) species collected at one or a limited number of sites only at night: e.g. Ampelisca spp, at Pierre Noire and Diastylis spp. at site F. The Seine estuary supports a typical suprabenthic estuarine community. Elements of the suprabenthic fauna also showed significant daily rhythms which took several forms depending on the species under consideration.

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