Response of Trophic Groups of Macrobenthos to Organically Enriched Sediments: A Comparative Study between Temperate and Tropical Regions
This study is aimed to detect the level of environmental disturbance caused by farming activities using trophic groups of macrobenthic assemblages, with emphasizes the difference between temperate and tropical regions. The samples of macrobenthic assemblages were taken from 2 (two) farm sites, i.e. Southern Spencer Gulf, South Australia, where farming of southern bluefin tuna (Thunnus maccoyii) takes place, representing as a temperate region (Site I) and milk fish (Chanos chanos) farms and mangrove area at coastal region of Mngkang Kulon, Semarang, Central Java, Indonesia, representing as a tropical region (Site II). Macrobenthic abundance was categorised based on six major trophic groups.Macrobenthic assemblages dominated by all polychaetes, they are Capitellidae, Cirratullidae, Lumbrineridae, Nephtyidae, and Spionidae at Site I (temperate region), owing to their relatively tolerance to organic enrichment, both at the farm sites and at control sites. Surface deposit feeders (SDF) dominated in abundance at both control and fish farm sites at Site I, whilst subsurface deposit feeders (SSDF) exhibited highest in proportion at Site II over the study period, in particular species of Capittelidae, indicating that both sites has been influenced by fish farm activities. The abundance of deposit feeders was significantly higher at the farm sites than at the reference sites. Organic carbon in the sediment surface is likely to correlate with deposit feeding and sub-surface deposit feeding species richness, whereas total and food particulate matter correlate with species diversity. The result of this comparative study implies that response of trophic groups of macrobenthos to environmental disturbance are considerably similar at both tropical and temperate regions.
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