Benthic macrofauna of the Andaman Sea
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Macrobenthic fauna in the depth range 11 to 2150m comprised 22 faunal taxa. Of these, the polychaetes were the most dominant group and contributed 76.8%. Distribution of macrofauna was substrate specific with maximum (410m -2)population on clayey deposits and minimum (266 m -2) in coralline sand areas. Mean standing stock was relatively low (6 gm -2) and varied from 0.3 to 74.4 gm -2. Biomass of infauna was considerably lower than those of the epifauna or onfauna and the production decreased rapidly with increasing depth. Qualitative and quantitative impoverishment of the benthic macrofauna in relation to oceanographic characteristics of the Andaman Sea are discussed.
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