Seasonal variation in tropical benthic Sargassum and associated motile epifauna

Martin-Smith, K.L. (1992) Seasonal variation in tropical benthic Sargassum and associated motile epifauna. In: Proceedings of the 7th International Coral Reef Symposium (2) pp. 881-886. From: 7th International Coral Reef Symposium, 22-27 June 1992, The University of Guam, Mangilao, GU.

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Seasonal variation in 5 species of Sargassum growing on a fringing reef, and their motile epifauna, was quantified monthly for a period of 18 months. Density of adult plants did not vary predictably through the year but individual Sargassum plants displayed seasonal growth; they over wintered as holdfasts with small vegetative shoots and then increased in size from September to February. Maximum size was reached in January/February while reproduction commenced in November and continued until April. Following reproduction, loss of reproductive branches and vegetative shoots occurred. Motile epifauna which was collected and separated in situ, consisted largely of gammarid amphipods, isopods, tanaids, gastropods and errant polychaetes. Broudly similar temporal trends in abundance were observed in all taxa with a peak of abundance in June/July followed by a decrease to a minimum in December-February. This pattern was not merely a dilution effect on epifaunal density as the plants grew, but an actual decrease in numbers. Although habitat architecture was not quantified it is suggested that the motile epifauna are not habitat-limited but are responding to some other factor.

Item ID: 24444
Item Type: Conference Item (Research - E1)
ISBN: 1-881629-03-1
Date Deposited: 10 Jan 2013 05:37
FoR Codes: 06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0602 Ecology > 060201 Behavioural Ecology @ 50%
06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0602 Ecology > 060202 Community Ecology (excl Invasive Species Ecology) @ 50%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9608 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity > 960808 Marine Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity @ 50%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970106 Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences @ 50%
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