Biodiversity Monitoring Stations for Benthic Macrofauna and Meiofauna in the Disko Fan and Hatton Basin Conservation Areas

Published: 15 September 2022| Version 2 | DOI: 10.17632/6dzyz3xcs6.2
Contributors:
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Beatriz Rincon,
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Description

In 2012 and 2013, Fisheries and Oceans Canada surveyed the benthos in two areas closed to bottom contact fishing, the Narwhal Overwintering and Coldwater Coral Zone (now the Disko Fan Conservation Area, DFCA), and the Hatton Basin Voluntary Coral Protection Zone (now the Hatton Basin Conservation Area, HBCA). Samples were collected following protocols recommended by the Arctic Council’s Circumpolar Biodiversity Monitoring Plan for the purposes of providing baseline data for future monitoring of benthic invertebrates in this sensitive region, and for facilitating pan-Arctic comparisons of benthic communities. Five biodiversity monitoring stations were established, four in the DFCA and one in the HBCA, each of which was fully sampled according to those protocols with Van Veen grabs or box corers, drop cameras and temperature recorders attached to the gear. A report summarizing the grab/core-sampled benthic fauna collected during the 2012 survey of the Conservation Areas (Jacobs et al. 2022) and complements another report documenting the epibenthos from the camera transects in the DFCA (Kenchington et al 2022). Data on macrofauna in the 1-cm size fraction, and on foraminiferan meiofauna are provided. In total, 101 macrofaunal taxa were identified and enumerated from 24 sediment samples from the five monitoring stations and one other location in the DFCA, of which biomass data were collected for 90 taxa. Those taxa were from 12 phyla (Annelida, Arthropoda, Brachiopoda, Bryozoa, Chordata, Cnidaria, Echinodermata, Mollusca, Nemertea, Platyhelminthes, Porifera, and Sipuncula) and 51 families, with the Annelida being the most diverse, followed by Porifera, Echinodermata and Bryozoa. Foraminiferan meiofauna were identified from another 12 sediment samples, all from the four monitoring stations in the DFCA. All samples contained both calcareous and agglutinated species. In total, 41 agglutinated taxa were identified, including 36 to species, four to the genus level, and one general taxon. Calcareous foraminifera were identified to 46 taxa, including 34 species, 11 others identified to the genus level, and one general taxon. Additionally, three species of planktonic foraminifera were present, giving a total of 90 taxa. Diversity indices for each sample were provided in the report based on these data for both macrofauna and meiofauna. Multivariate analyses were performed to compare samples and stations by taxon composition and the environment. Those results provide baseline data on the benthic fauna in this area that will serve as a reference for future monitoring of a region that is undergoing rapid environmental change. Reference: Jacobs, K., Bouchard Marmen, M., Rincón, B., MacDonald, B., Lirette, C., Gibb, O., Treble, M., and Kenchington, E. 2022. Biodiversity Monitoring Stations for Benthic Macrofauna and Meiofauna in the Disko Fan and Hatton Basin Conservation Areas. Can. Tech. Rep. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 3487: vi + 86 p.

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Institutions

Fisheries and Oceans Canada Maritimes Region, Fisheries and Oceans Canada Central and Arctic Region

Categories

Marine Benthic Organisms, Benthic Community, Foraminifera, Benthic Ecology, Macrofauna, Sampling Survey, Meiofauna

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