Pattern of species succession of soft-bottom macrofauna in the estuaries of Goa, west coast of India
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Multivariate techniques, chord normalized expected species shared (CNESS) and principal component analyses of hypergeometric probability of species matrices (PCA-H) were applied to soft-bottom macrofauna data of Goa estuaries, west coast of India, to assess the pattern of species succession at different sites. These analyses revealed three groups of species that produced three-stages or triangular species succession pattern, corresponding to the three seasons, namely post-, pre- and southwest monsoon. Each site exhibited a different pattern of species succession and compostion. A total of 58 species were recorded among which 18 were new to the local fauna. Dominant species that controlled the orientation of this succession were Polychaetes (Prioniospio pinnata, Clymene annandalei, Nereis capensis), Bivalves (Meretrix casta, Cardium flavum), Amphipoda (Urothoe platydactyla), Echiurida (Thalassema sp.) and Nema- toda at different sites. Species succession was mainly influenced by the southwest monsoon and the local biotic and abiotic factors at specific sites.
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