Biodiversity of marine sessile epifauna at an Aegean island subject to hydrothermal activity: Milos, eastern Mediterranean Sea

C. Morri, C.N. Blanchi, S. Cocito, A. Peirano, A.M. De Biase, S. Aliani, M. Pansini, M. Boyer, F. Ferdeghini, M. Pestarino, P. Dando

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Abstract

Sessile macroepifauna was sampled at six rocky sites between 2 and 90 m depth with a number of different methods involving both underwater photography and collection of specimens. A total of 212 species (or varieties) were identified, belonging to seven higher taxa: poriferans (24 species), cnidarians (32), molluscs (8), serpuloidean polychaetes (33), bryozoans (90), brachiopods (4) and ascidians (21). The combined use of a varied array of sampling methods was effective in obtaining a rich faunal inventory. Deep and offshore sites tended to be richer in species than shallow and inshore sites. In all cases species richness was higher at sites closest to hydrothermal vents on the sea floor. Although there are no comparable inventories of marine sessile epifauna in the Aegean, the high number of species found, with a relatively low sampling effort in a restricted area, indicates that the marine biodiversity of this sea is not as low as traditionally believed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)729 - 739
Number of pages11
JournalMarine Biology
Volume135
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1999
Externally publishedYes

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Aquatic Science
  • Ecology

Cite this

Morri, C., Blanchi, C. N., Cocito, S., Peirano, A., De Biase, A. M., Aliani, S., ... Dando, P. (1999). Biodiversity of marine sessile epifauna at an Aegean island subject to hydrothermal activity: Milos, eastern Mediterranean Sea. Marine Biology, 135(4), 729 - 739. https://doi.org/10.1007/s002270050674