Freshwater seepages and ephemeral macroalgae proliferation in an intertidal bay: II. Effect on benthic biomass and metabolism

Abstract : Intertidal soft-sediments biomass and metabolism are naturally heterogeneous in time and space at different scales. Particular perturbations such as freshwater seepages and seasonal proliferation of ephemeral macroalgae can intermittently and/or locally create additional variability in these systems. Since the impacts of such environmental stresses on natural processes are not well understood, the hypothesis that they would affect the functioning of the benthic system was tested. An intertidal bay whose structure and functioning has been previously described and where a carbon budget has been calculated, was chosen. The results showed that the metabolism of the intertidal sediments was greatly impacted by the above perturbations. Freshwater seepage increased meiofauna and microalgae biomasses and enhanced the total benthic metabolism (increasing community respiration and gross primary production until 4 and 2 fold respectively) without altering its seasonal trend. Ephemeral macroalgae proliferation had a more important effect on the total benthic metabolism, increasing community respiration and gross primary production 8 and 12 fold respectively and leading to a change in the seasonal trend. (C) 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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Aline Migné, Vincent Ouisse, Cédric Hubas, Dominique Davoult. Freshwater seepages and ephemeral macroalgae proliferation in an intertidal bay: II. Effect on benthic biomass and metabolism. Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science, Elsevier, 2011, 92 (1), pp.161-168. ⟨10.1016/j.ecss.2010.12.023⟩. ⟨hal-01255971⟩

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