The species composition and the spatial structure of benthos were studied along a transect running at a depth of 1–18 m on the soft bottom substrates of Zapadnaya Bight of Furugelm Island (Peter the Great Bay, Sea of Japan). This area has been proposed as a major site for long-term monitoring of the Far Eastern State Marine Reserve. Hydrobiological samples of different sizes (16 cm2, 0.025, and 1 m2) were taken by a diving method at 5-m intervals from the shore. Benthic communities were distinguished using principal component analysis (PCA), Sørensen's similarity indices, and similarity dendrograms. The grain size composition of bottom sediment was determined. Three benthic communities at depths of 1–3, 4–8, and 14–18 m and two transitional zones were distinguished in Zapadnaya Bight. The benthic communities are characterized by a relative constancy of species composition within their boundaries, and by stable ratios of quantitative characteristics of other species from different ecological groups. The transitional zones, which are comparable in extension with the communities themselves, are characterized by changes in species composition and the presence of characteristic species; here, the substrate type changes and sediment grain sorting is decreased.
Russian Journal of Marine Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Nov 18, 2007
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