Diversity and distribution of cold-seep fauna associated with different geological and environmental settings at mud volcanoes and pockmarks of the Nile Deep-Sea Fan
|Author(s)||Ritt Benedicte1, Pierre Catherine2, Gauthier Olivier1, 3, Wenzhoefer Frank5, 6, Boetius Antje5, 6, Sarrazin Jozee1|
|Affiliation(s)||1 : IFREMER, Ctr Brest, Dept Etud Ecosyst Profonds, Lab Environm Profond, F-29280 Plouzane, France.
2 : Univ Paris 06, LOCEAN, UMR 7159, F-75005 Paris, France.
3 : Univ Bretagne Occidentale, LEMAR, UMR 6539, F-29200 Plouzane, France.
4 : Ecole Prat Hautes Etud CBAE, UMR 5059, F-34000 Montpellier, France.
5 : MPI, Habitat Grp, D-28359 Bremen, Germany.
6 : HGF MPG Res Grp Deep Sea Ecol & Technol, AWI, D-27515 Bremerhaven, Germany.
|Source||Marine Biology (0025-3162) (Springer), 2011-06 , Vol. 158 , N. 6 , P. 1187-1210|
|WOS© Times Cited||53|
|Abstract||The Nile Deep-Sea Fan (NDSF) is located on the passive continental margin off Egypt and is characterized by the occurrence of active fluid seepage such as brine lakes, pockmarks and mud volcanoes. This study characterizes the structure of faunal assemblages of such active seepage systems of the NDSF. Benthic communities associated with reduced, sulphidic microhabitats such as sediments and carbonate crusts were sampled by remotely operated vehicles during two cruises in 2006 (BIONIL) and 2007 (MEDECO). Environmental conditions and biological factors including family-level faunal composition, density and diversity were measured at local and regional scales. Significant differences were detected at different spatial scales: (1) the fauna of reduced habitats differed substantially in activity, diversity and biomass from the non-seep environment at similar water depth, (2) cold seep microhabitats showed differences in community structure and composition related to substratum type as well as to the intensity and location of fluid emissions.|