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On some ecological aspects of the lugworm Abarenicola affinis chiliensis Wells, 1963 (Polychaeta: Scolecida: Arenicolidae) from shallow soft bottoms of northern Chile

By Rodrigo A. Moreno, Nicolas Rozbaczylo, Roger D. Sepulveda, Milko I. Marinkovic, Wolf E. Arntz and Sven Thatje


We conducted an ecological study of a population of the polychaete Abarenicola affinis chiliensis in the shallow subtidal zone of Caleta Guardiamarina Riquelme in northern Chile. The study area is characterized by a hypoxic bottom consisting of fine sands and a silt-clay mixture, with high values of total organic matter content (TOM &gt; 20%). During the two study periods (spring 1996 and 1997), the numerical contribution of A. affinis chiliensis to the total macrofauna was greater than 80%. A similar pattern was recorded for biomass, with A. affinis chiliensis surpassing 95% of the total macrofauna biomass. Statistical analyses did not detect significant differences in environmental and biotic variables between years (with the exception of salinity, which increased slightly),<br/>indicating temporal stability of these variables over the study period. Our results do not support the hypothesis of Wells that seawater temperatures act as a physical barrier impeding the dispersal of Abarenicola species. This hypothesis should be reexamined for some representatives of Abarenicola on the Pacific coast of South America

Topics: QH301, GC
Year: 2007
OAI identifier:
Provided by: e-Prints Soton

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