ZOOPLANKTON (SMALL PLANKTONIC COPEPODS) COMMUNITIES IN LIANGA BAY MARINE ECOSYSTEM

Gemma A. Asufre

Abstract


Lianga Bay is an important marine ecosystem that caters diverse organisms with critical roles in marine production. Small copepods are the most abundant zooplankton and are important links in marine food webs. There is no available record of the diversity of small planktonic copepods communities in Lianga Bay. This study was conducted in order to document the biodiversity of zooplankton with special consideration on the small planktonic copepods in Lianga Bay marine ecosystem. Zooplankton samples were collected using conical plankton net. Physico-chemical parameters were also determined. Shannon diversity index was used for diversity analysis. A total of 95 copepod taxa belonging to 41 genera, 17 families and 4 orders were observed in the 2 sampling stations in Lianga Bay from the months of May to July 2009. Among the 95 taxa, there were 15 small planktonic copepods observed dominated by the genus Oithona.. The copepod species were dominated by Paracalanidae with 18 taxa under 9 genera while the family with the highest abundance (20.5%) was Calanidae. Shannon index (4.382) showed high diversity. However, this composition of small copepods in Lianga Bay could not be considered as an indicator of coastal eutrophication due to its less abundance (14.64%) in the overall community structure of copepods in the area.

Keywords


copepods, zooplankton, diversity, planktonic community, Lianga Bay

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References


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