Macrobenthic community structure response to coastal hypoxia off Southeastern Arabian sea
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The analysis of changes in macrobenthic community using multivariate statistical techniques has been applied to find the structure by the environmental condition. The aim of the study was to evaluate macrofaunal community patterns between natural occurrence of coastal hypoxia condition (30 to 100 m depth) and normoxic bottom waters over the Southeastern Arabian Sea (SEAS). The macrofaunal communities patterns were analyzed by using various statistical methods (e.g. rank correlation, hierarchical clustering, nMDS, BIO-ENV). A clear seasonal difference was found in macrofaunal abundance, biomass, taxonomic composition, diversity and their relation to environmental conditions. Multivariate analysis of Non Multidimensional Scaling (nMDS) showed two major groups macrofaunal communities and ANOSIM results showed a significant difference between macrofaunal community structure in between nornaxia and hypoxia conditions (R=0.913). Spearman rank correlation (using BIO-ENV procedure included in PRIMER, V.6) showed the highest correlation of dissolved oxygen (R=0.678) with community structure. The SIMPER analysis illustrated community pattern changed seasonally with Paraprionospia cordifolia (20.03%) dominated during hypoxia whereas Tharyx sp. (22.63%) dominated in nornaxia conditions. The macrofaunal community patterns revealed contrasting pattern with two seasons, perhaps due to the dissolved oxygen (DO).
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