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Distribution and composition of macrozoobenthic communities along a Victoria-Land transect (Ross Sea, Antarctica)

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Rehm, P. , Thatje, S. , Arntz, W. , Brandt, A. and Heilmayer, O. (2006): Distribution and composition of macrozoobenthic communities along a Victoria-Land transect (Ross Sea, Antarctica) , Polar biology . doi: 10.1007/s00300-006-0115-8
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Abstract:

The Victoria-Land Transect Cruise with the Italian research vessel "Italica", carried out in February 2004, was the first large-scale attempt to obtain benthic samples systematically along a latitudinal transect on the Antarctic Ross Sea shelf. Data presented from this survey are based on Rauschert dredge samples, which were taken at four areas at depth ranging from 84 m to 515 m. A cluster analysis based on relative numbers of abundance was performed and demonstrated a change in community structure depending on the location along the latitudinal transect, a change in community structure with depth was not recorded. Dominant taxon of the Ross Sea fauna were the Arthropoda (61 %), followed by Polychaeta (20 %), Mollusca (14 %) and Echinodermata (3 %). Total number of abundance decreased with depth with an exception at Cape Russell, whereas a trend in biomass was not documented. Abundance and biomass proportions of major taxa changed gradually along the latitudinal transect.

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