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Intertidal Rocky Shore Communities of the Continental Portuguese Coast: Analysis of Distribution Patterns

Intertidal Rocky Shore Communities of the Continental Portuguese Coast: Analysis of Distribution Patterns
Intertidal Rocky Shore Communities of the Continental Portuguese Coast: Analysis of Distribution Patterns
A general description of rocky shore distribution patterns (“zonation”) along the whole Portuguese coast is given to provide the context for comparisons of distribution patterns of mid-shore organisms. In order to test if there was any variation in species distribution and abundance in the upper and lower mid-shore zone (eulittoral) along the entire intertidal Portuguese coast, three main regions were studied (north, centre and south) and nine shores were visited in each region. At each one of the 27 locations, the shore was levelled and a general qualitative description was made, which also aided stratification of subsequent quantitative sampling. An upper zone (littoral fringe) characterised by the presence of encrusting lichens, small littorinid gastropods and cyanobacteria was found on most of the shores along the Portuguese coast. The mid-shore zone (eulittoral) is essentially dominated by barnacles and sometimes mussels. The distribution patterns observed on the lower shore (sub-littoral fringe) showed a distinction between northern shores, where large brown algae are present, and shores located in the central and southern regions, essentially dominated by red algal turf species. Multidimensional analysis and the ANOSIM test have revealed clear differences in the structure of the upper and lower mid-shore zone. Within each level, the northern region was considerably different from the south and central regions. SIMPER analysis revealed the species which contributed to the separation between shore levels and regions. It has also given important information on the geographical decline in abundance of species.
Distribution patterns, rocky shores, intertidal communities, Portugal
0173-9565
69-90
Boaventura, Diana
31709114-21b8-4301-920d-59d682337d99
Re, Pedro
d4dc324f-bb3d-41fb-9e39-8dd29fc7cd0a
Cancela da Fonseca, Luis
a8a14905-f198-4ccd-b72c-bd1ab2800ee2
Hawkins, Stephen J.
758fe1c1-30cd-4ed1-bb65-2471dc7c11fa
Boaventura, Diana
31709114-21b8-4301-920d-59d682337d99
Re, Pedro
d4dc324f-bb3d-41fb-9e39-8dd29fc7cd0a
Cancela da Fonseca, Luis
a8a14905-f198-4ccd-b72c-bd1ab2800ee2
Hawkins, Stephen J.
758fe1c1-30cd-4ed1-bb65-2471dc7c11fa

Boaventura, Diana, Re, Pedro, Cancela da Fonseca, Luis and Hawkins, Stephen J. (2002) Intertidal Rocky Shore Communities of the Continental Portuguese Coast: Analysis of Distribution Patterns. Marine Ecology, 23 (1), 69-90. (doi:10.1111/(ISSN)1439-0485).

Record type: Article

Abstract

A general description of rocky shore distribution patterns (“zonation”) along the whole Portuguese coast is given to provide the context for comparisons of distribution patterns of mid-shore organisms. In order to test if there was any variation in species distribution and abundance in the upper and lower mid-shore zone (eulittoral) along the entire intertidal Portuguese coast, three main regions were studied (north, centre and south) and nine shores were visited in each region. At each one of the 27 locations, the shore was levelled and a general qualitative description was made, which also aided stratification of subsequent quantitative sampling. An upper zone (littoral fringe) characterised by the presence of encrusting lichens, small littorinid gastropods and cyanobacteria was found on most of the shores along the Portuguese coast. The mid-shore zone (eulittoral) is essentially dominated by barnacles and sometimes mussels. The distribution patterns observed on the lower shore (sub-littoral fringe) showed a distinction between northern shores, where large brown algae are present, and shores located in the central and southern regions, essentially dominated by red algal turf species. Multidimensional analysis and the ANOSIM test have revealed clear differences in the structure of the upper and lower mid-shore zone. Within each level, the northern region was considerably different from the south and central regions. SIMPER analysis revealed the species which contributed to the separation between shore levels and regions. It has also given important information on the geographical decline in abundance of species.

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More information

Published date: 2002
Keywords: Distribution patterns, rocky shores, intertidal communities, Portugal

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 188427
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/188427
ISSN: 0173-9565
PURE UUID: c82b1073-9a8a-4fe6-9f25-f636072e6b32

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Date deposited: 24 May 2011 15:34
Last modified: 16 Jul 2019 23:32

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