Population distribution of meiofauna in relation to some environmental features in a sandy intertidal region of Goa, west coast of India
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Meiofauna population of Candolim beach mainly composed of nematoda (40.15), harpacticoida (30.75 per cent), turbellaria (23.35 per cent) and other groups which included polychaeta, bivalvia and mystacocardia. The maximum total meiofauna population encountered was 3525.10 per square cm. Temporal variation of meiofauna showed increase of meiofauna population from post to premonsoon season and it was maximum in April. The fauna was very poor in southwest monsoon season. Spatial distribution of meiofauna showed maximum densities at 10 m station. Two way ANOVA among the spatio-temporal variation showed significant variation between the seasons. Vertical distribution of meiofauna showed (i) aggregation of meiofauna population at lower depth. (ii) nematoda throughout the core depth and (iii) other taxa at lower depth. Among the environmental parameters studied grain size, porosity, slope of beach, salinity and availability of food were important factors in the distribution and abundance of meiofauna taxa in the intertidal region of Candolim beach.
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