The role of geomorphology in the distribution of intertidal rocky macroalgae in the NE Atlantic region.

Abstract: It is known that rocky macroalgae distribution depends on several abiotic factors, but little attention has been given to geomorphological influences. This paper analysed the relation between geomorphological variables (active processes, coastal morphology, coastal orientation and lithology) and rocky intertidal macroalgae species at a local scale. Thirteen sites were sampled along the coast of Cantabria (North Spain) in order to obtain covers of macroalgae species. Multivariate analysis and logistic regression were applied, predicting the probability occurrence of macroalgae species as a response to the predictor geomorphological variables. Our results showed that coastal morphology and coastal orientation were the principal geomorphological factors explaining the structure of macroalgae communities. The most significant differences in substrate preferences were found between Bifurcaria bifurcata, that appears in wave-cut platforms oriented towards the east, and Corallina officinalis/Ellisolandia elongata and Gelidium spinosum, which are found in cliffs oriented towards the north and west. Although these variables help to characterise species distribution, their predictive value is still limited, possibly due to other factors influencing macroalgae. Thus, some of the geomorphological variables studied here are among the environmental factors that determined the distribution of intertidal macroalgae communities at a local scale, even if not always in a direct way.

 Fuente: Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science, 2016, 179, pp.90–98

Editorial: Academic Press

 Año de publicación: 2016

Nº de páginas: 9

Tipo de publicación: Artículo de Revista

DOI: 10.1016/j.ecss.2015.10.007

ISSN: 0272-7714,1096-0015

Proyecto español: Environment Department of the Regional Government of Cantabria (Water Management Projects for 2010e2012, 2012e2014 periods)

Proyecto europeo: info:eu-repo/grantAgreement/EC/FP7/287844/EU/Towards Coast to Coast NETworks of marine protected areas (from the shore to the high and deep sea), coupled with sea-based wind energy potential/COCONET/

Url de la publicación: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ecss.2015.10.007