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Ability of invertebrate indices to assess ecological condition on intertidal rocky shores

Ability of invertebrate indices to assess ecological condition on intertidal rocky shores
Ability of invertebrate indices to assess ecological condition on intertidal rocky shores
The implementation of directives such as the European Water Framework Directive (WFD) and the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) has promoted the development of several tools and methods for assessing the ecological health of marine ecosystems. Within the scope of the WFD and in terms of rocky shores, several multimetric tools were developed based on the macroalgae biological quality element (BQE), in addition to those based on macroinvertebrates.

The WFD requires member states to assess each BQE separately. The present work aimed to test the ability of ecological indices to distinguish sites within anthropogenic disturbance gradients caused by organic enrichment, using macroinvertebrate communities on intertidal rocky shores. Owing to the lack of more specific indices (for rocky shore), indices based on abundance, diversity and/or taxonomic composition were selected from several widely used indices in ecological studies and/or developed for soft-bottom macroinvertebrate communities.

Present findings reveal several indices based on diversity and/or taxonomic composition able to distinguish sites within the disturbance gradients, showing increasing quality from the site nearest the source of organic enrichment to that farthest from it, especially indices calculated using biomass data, and in the summer season. Such results open good perspectives for the use of intertidal macroinvertebrate communities from rocky shores, and also help add the perspective of this biological quality element in the ecological quality assessment of coastal waters.
EU water framework directive, Diversity, Taxonomic composition, Ecological indices, Coastal, Benthic macroinvertebrates
1470-160X
255-268
Vinagre, Pedro Almeida
bec88109-f6a6-4fea-8f23-d488ea5848c7
Pais-Costa, Antónia Juliana
5cb00318-0696-4dfa-bda8-930b570903cd
Hawkins, Stephen J.
758fe1c1-30cd-4ed1-bb65-2471dc7c11fa
Borja, ÿngel
172ba654-32ff-4d0b-b9ca-fe98bbb0e4aa
Marques, João Carlos
a64d605a-a5ec-484d-96a7-a78227c09a5e
Neto, João Magalhães
3d107362-2c5f-4bd7-8d21-a83266701cd1
Vinagre, Pedro Almeida
bec88109-f6a6-4fea-8f23-d488ea5848c7
Pais-Costa, Antónia Juliana
5cb00318-0696-4dfa-bda8-930b570903cd
Hawkins, Stephen J.
758fe1c1-30cd-4ed1-bb65-2471dc7c11fa
Borja, ÿngel
172ba654-32ff-4d0b-b9ca-fe98bbb0e4aa
Marques, João Carlos
a64d605a-a5ec-484d-96a7-a78227c09a5e
Neto, João Magalhães
3d107362-2c5f-4bd7-8d21-a83266701cd1

Vinagre, Pedro Almeida, Pais-Costa, Antónia Juliana, Hawkins, Stephen J., Borja, ÿngel, Marques, João Carlos and Neto, João Magalhães (2016) Ability of invertebrate indices to assess ecological condition on intertidal rocky shores. Ecological Indicators, 70, 255-268. (doi:10.1016/j.ecolind.2016.06.004).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The implementation of directives such as the European Water Framework Directive (WFD) and the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) has promoted the development of several tools and methods for assessing the ecological health of marine ecosystems. Within the scope of the WFD and in terms of rocky shores, several multimetric tools were developed based on the macroalgae biological quality element (BQE), in addition to those based on macroinvertebrates.

The WFD requires member states to assess each BQE separately. The present work aimed to test the ability of ecological indices to distinguish sites within anthropogenic disturbance gradients caused by organic enrichment, using macroinvertebrate communities on intertidal rocky shores. Owing to the lack of more specific indices (for rocky shore), indices based on abundance, diversity and/or taxonomic composition were selected from several widely used indices in ecological studies and/or developed for soft-bottom macroinvertebrate communities.

Present findings reveal several indices based on diversity and/or taxonomic composition able to distinguish sites within the disturbance gradients, showing increasing quality from the site nearest the source of organic enrichment to that farthest from it, especially indices calculated using biomass data, and in the summer season. Such results open good perspectives for the use of intertidal macroinvertebrate communities from rocky shores, and also help add the perspective of this biological quality element in the ecological quality assessment of coastal waters.

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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 3 June 2016
e-pub ahead of print date: 3 June 2016
Published date: 1 November 2016
Keywords: EU water framework directive, Diversity, Taxonomic composition, Ecological indices, Coastal, Benthic macroinvertebrates
Organisations: Ocean and Earth Science

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 403909
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/403909
ISSN: 1470-160X
PURE UUID: c3c44c71-6a81-4460-a159-405ebebc0c9c

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 15 Dec 2016 10:26
Last modified: 07 Jan 2022 21:55

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Contributors

Author: Pedro Almeida Vinagre
Author: Antónia Juliana Pais-Costa
Author: ÿngel Borja
Author: João Carlos Marques
Author: João Magalhães Neto

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