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Ecologie de l'étage bathyal dans la Méditerranée occidentale
Carpine, Ch. (1970). Ecologie de l'étage bathyal dans la Méditerranée occidentale. Mémoires de l'Institut océanographique, Monaco, 2. Institut Océanographique: Monaco. 146 pp.
Part of: Mémoires de l'Institut océanographique, Monaco. Musée Océanographique: Monaco. ISSN 0304-5714, more
Peer reviewed article  

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    VLIZ: Aquatic Ecology ECO.67 [98394]


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  • Carpine, Ch.

    Biological and physico-chemical samples have been collected at depths between 200 and 2,000 m, from 4 regions of the western Mediterranean: the occidental and oriental coasts of Corsica, the French continental coasts of Esterel and localities off Monaco. 3 types of equipment have been used; the Brouardel surface sampler (water and sediment samples, microfauna), the 'spatangue' dredge (qualitative and semi-quantitative fauna samples), trawls (vagile macrofauna). From a study of these samples, it has been possible to establish the general environmental conditions and variations: the salinity and O sub(2) content of the water; the carbonates and organic matter content of the sediment. Almost 500 spp have been definitely identified. Other animals are still being studied. Correlations are already well established between the deep-water fauna of the Mediterranean and that of the Atlantic. In particular, there is an important resemblance between the bathyal population of the Mediterranean and that of the boreal Atlantic (Sognefjord). As a result of the present survey, it is possible to add a considerable number of spp to the list of characteristics recognized as exclusive to the deep mud biocoenosis, bringing the total of these characteristics to more than a hundred. The semi-quantitative study based on samples of 50, 2 and 0.1 dm super(3) indicate the geographic and bathymetric variations existing between the different regions and other parts of the Mediterranean. Thus it can be shown that there is a notable decline from west to east of all the fauna, and a reduction of the macrofauna in proportion to the depth within the bathymetric limits explored. However, these quantitative variations do not mask the fundamental time and space uniformity of the biocoenosis. Finally, the problem concerning limits and horizons of the biocoenosis is examined more thoroughly according to the distribution of different ecological groups of the population. It is shown that a bathylittoral transition zone exists, where the littoral and deep systems meet. This zone is defined by a mingling of faunas belong to each of the 2 systems and by the absence of its own characteristics. The presence of a Mediterranean abyssal zone is discussed: the lack of purely abyssal spp of the endofauna makes it impossible to define a biocoenosis in the abyssal zone.

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