Monitoring benthic foraminiferal dynamics at Bottsand coastal lagoon (western Baltic Sea)

Schönfeld, Joachim

Benthic foraminifera from Bottsand coastal lagoon, western Baltic Sea, have been studied since the mid-1960s. They were monitored annually in late autumn since 2003 at the terminal ditch of the lagoon. There were 12 different species recognised, of which three have not been recorded during earlier investigations. Dominant species showed strong interannual fluctuations and a steady increase in population densities over the last decade. Elphidium incertum, a stenohaline species of the Baltic deep water fauna, colonised the Bottsand lagoon in 2016, most likely during a period of salinities >19 units and water temperatures of 18 inline-formulaC on average in early autumn. The high salinities probably triggered their germination from a propagule bank in the ditch bottom sediment. The new E. incertum population showed densities higher by an order of magnitude than those of the indigenous species. The latter did not decline, revealing that E. incertum used another food source or occupied a different microhabitat. Elphidium incertum survived transient periods of lower salinities in late autumn 2017, though with reduced abundances, and became a regular faunal constituent at the Bottsand lagoon.

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Schönfeld, Joachim: Monitoring benthic foraminiferal dynamics at Bottsand coastal lagoon (western Baltic Sea). 2018. Copernicus Publications.

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Rechteinhaber: Joachim Schönfeld

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