The recovery of benthic foraminifera and bacteria after disturbance: experimental evidence
SourceJournal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, 312, 1, (2004), pp. 137-170
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Aquatic Ecology and Environmental Biology
Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology
In experiments with living meiofauna, sediment is often sieved prior to incubation. This is primarily to remove macrofauna and to increase reproducibility among replicates. At the onset of the experiment, the bacteria are severely disturbed. The effects of these disturbances are ill-known but might affect the outcome of the experimental meiofaunal and biogeochemical studies substantially. We compared the disturbance induced by sieving with the disturbance in microcosms from which meiofauna was removed by flushing with argon. Both experimental situations were compared with untreated cores and the field situation. Neither sieving nor flushing induced changes in the composition of the foraminiferal community compared with the natural situation; the four most abundant species found in the field remained dominant during the experiment. Sieving led to a pronounced disturbance in both bacterial as well as foraminiferal abundance patterns. The depth distribution of some species seems to be related to food, although bacteria might play a regulating role as well. (C) 2004 Elsevier B.V All rights reserved.
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