|Spatial and temporal variations in meiobenthic community patterns at the deep-sea observatory Hausgarten|
Debretsion Andom, W. (2011). Spatial and temporal variations in meiobenthic community patterns at the deep-sea observatory Hausgarten. MSc Thesis. Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research: Bremen. 30 pp.
Diepzee; Gemeenschapssamenstelling; Meiobenthos; Ruimtelijk variaties; Temporele variatie; Marien
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In order to understand the response of the deep-sea meiobenthos to a highly varying, ice-edge related input of phytodetritus, we investigated the abundance and composition of meiobenthos at the arctic, long-term, deep-sea site HAUSGARTEN along the latitudinal transect in two years 2005 and 2008. Nematode communities of the northernmost and southernmost stations of HAUSGARTEN collected only in 2008 were investigated in terms of the genera composition, feeding types, and size and biomass spectra. Taxonomic distinctness with other ecological indicators (Shannon-Wiener H? and W statistics from Abundance Biomass Comparison (ABC)-curve were used to test the ecological conditions of the two stations. Results so obtained indicated that the data showed inter-annual variations between the study years, lower meiofauna abundance recorded in 2005 in relation to low organic input measured in that year. In relation to distance from the ice edge, the southern station (distant from the ice edge) characterised by high abundance dominated by one or two size class nematodes, lower taxonomic diversity and dominated by opportunistic stout and short morphotypic nematodes. While the northern station (closer to the ice edge) characterized by lower abundance, higher taxonomic and trophic diversity coupled with higher proportion of predatory feeding type nematodes. W-statistics and ABC plot were compliant to other ecological indicators that the station closer to the ice edge is under better ecological condition than the station distant from the ice edge. Moreover, this study illustrates the difficulty of overall structuring factors of nematode diversity and the complexity of the relation between food and nematode communities.