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Marine richness and gradients at Deception Island, Antarctica

Marine richness and gradients at Deception Island, Antarctica
Marine richness and gradients at Deception Island, Antarctica
Studies of the recovery of the fauna following the 1967–70 eruptions at Deception Island, South Shetland Islands, have made it one of the best-studied marine sites of the Southern Ocean for biodiversity. Using SCUBA we surveyed the mega- and macro-epifauna of its subtidal zones in the entrance (Neptune’s Bellows), immediately inside the caldera (Whaler’s Bay) and well within the caldera (Fumarole Bay). Richness declined from 10 phyla, 13 classes and 35 species at Neptune’s Bellows to three phyla, four classes and five species in Whaler’s Bay and just two phyla, classes and species at Fumarole Bay. Amongst the 35 species we found at Neptune’s Bellows, 14 were previously unrecorded from Deception Island. Despite many ship visits and amongst the warmest sea temperatures in the Southern Ocean, the Non Indigenous Species (NIS) algae were not found in our survey. Deception Island has been recolonized considerably since the recent eruptions, but many taxa are still very poorly represented and the colonizers present are mainly those with planktotrophic larvae. Examination of the literature revealed that to date 163 named marine species have been found within the caldera as well as at least 50 more morphospecies, which are yet to be identified. Species accumulation has consistently increased across eight recent samples reported and the number of species reported there is likely to reach 300 when taxa such as the nematodes are identified to species level. This represents a first meaningful total species estimate for an Antarctic marine area and, as the site is comparatively impoverished, indicates how rich the surrounding Antarctic shelf must be.
benthos, recolonization, south shetland islands, volcano, recovery
0954-1020
271-279
Barnes, David K.A.
f53924ec-169f-4620-9e9b-c51a405bf6ca
Linse, Katrin
74d7ddc0-74a1-4777-ac1d-3f39ae1935ad
Enderlein, Peter
a5ae31b1-e5aa-4a46-96ae-ec9cc9d5226c
Smale, Dan
19528a3a-f66c-474d-ae13-c6405b8014ab
Fraser, Keiron P.P.
7f42cac7-8764-4f94-a80c-cd93ad2649fc
Brown, Matt
4a13cc0c-be76-421a-8592-8ec46e4a309c
Barnes, David K.A.
f53924ec-169f-4620-9e9b-c51a405bf6ca
Linse, Katrin
74d7ddc0-74a1-4777-ac1d-3f39ae1935ad
Enderlein, Peter
a5ae31b1-e5aa-4a46-96ae-ec9cc9d5226c
Smale, Dan
19528a3a-f66c-474d-ae13-c6405b8014ab
Fraser, Keiron P.P.
7f42cac7-8764-4f94-a80c-cd93ad2649fc
Brown, Matt
4a13cc0c-be76-421a-8592-8ec46e4a309c

Barnes, David K.A., Linse, Katrin, Enderlein, Peter, Smale, Dan, Fraser, Keiron P.P. and Brown, Matt (2008) Marine richness and gradients at Deception Island, Antarctica. Antarctic Science, 20 (3), 271-279.

Record type: Article

Abstract

Studies of the recovery of the fauna following the 1967–70 eruptions at Deception Island, South Shetland Islands, have made it one of the best-studied marine sites of the Southern Ocean for biodiversity. Using SCUBA we surveyed the mega- and macro-epifauna of its subtidal zones in the entrance (Neptune’s Bellows), immediately inside the caldera (Whaler’s Bay) and well within the caldera (Fumarole Bay). Richness declined from 10 phyla, 13 classes and 35 species at Neptune’s Bellows to three phyla, four classes and five species in Whaler’s Bay and just two phyla, classes and species at Fumarole Bay. Amongst the 35 species we found at Neptune’s Bellows, 14 were previously unrecorded from Deception Island. Despite many ship visits and amongst the warmest sea temperatures in the Southern Ocean, the Non Indigenous Species (NIS) algae were not found in our survey. Deception Island has been recolonized considerably since the recent eruptions, but many taxa are still very poorly represented and the colonizers present are mainly those with planktotrophic larvae. Examination of the literature revealed that to date 163 named marine species have been found within the caldera as well as at least 50 more morphospecies, which are yet to be identified. Species accumulation has consistently increased across eight recent samples reported and the number of species reported there is likely to reach 300 when taxa such as the nematodes are identified to species level. This represents a first meaningful total species estimate for an Antarctic marine area and, as the site is comparatively impoverished, indicates how rich the surrounding Antarctic shelf must be.

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More information

Published date: 2008
Keywords: benthos, recolonization, south shetland islands, volcano, recovery
Organisations: Ocean Biochemistry & Ecosystems

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 348318
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/348318
ISSN: 0954-1020
PURE UUID: cb2ea683-2b26-4604-8d5f-224202457f64

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Date deposited: 12 Feb 2013 11:59
Last modified: 25 Oct 2017 08:57

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Contributors

Author: David K.A. Barnes
Author: Katrin Linse
Author: Peter Enderlein
Author: Dan Smale
Author: Keiron P.P. Fraser
Author: Matt Brown

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