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Distribution patterns of living benthic foraminifera from Cap Breton canyon, Bay of Biscay: Faunal response to sediment instability

Silvia Hess Frans Jorissen 1 
1 LPG-ANGERS - Laboratoire de Planétologie et Géodynamique - Angers
LPG - Laboratoire de Planétologie et Géodynamique [UMR 6112]
Abstract :

Analysis of living (Rose Bengal-stained) benthic foraminifera in 13 multicorer samples taken along the Cap Breton canyon (Bay of Biscay) revealed that the combination of organic-rich material and sediment instability provides very specific benthic ecosystem conditions. The active canyon hosts different foraminiferal assemblages that appear to be determined by different types and frequencies of environmental disturbance at the sites. Most of them are strongly dominated by shallow-infaunal living taxa that combine a tolerance for low-quality organic matter with a high reproductive potential. Foraminiferal assemblages characterized by high densities, very superficially living taxa and strong dominance of bolivinids and buliminids, follow a poor pioneer fauna dominated by Technitella melo. These assemblages are observed in the narrow canyon axis, where frequent sediment resuspension occurs and affects habitat stability. Assemblages studied from sites outside the canyon axis are still dominated by shallow-infaunal species but show lower foraminiferal densities and higher diversities. Deep-infaunal taxa are only present in some inner meanders and more distal stations. These assemblages are typical for ecological niches that are relatively stable and unaffected by re-sedimentation processes. They have attained a more advanced stage of ecosystem stability. They are influenced by neither lateral sediment nor enriched organic matter input.

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Soumis le : lundi 5 juillet 2021 - 12:00:45
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Silvia Hess, Frans Jorissen. Distribution patterns of living benthic foraminifera from Cap Breton canyon, Bay of Biscay: Faunal response to sediment instability. Deep Sea Research Part I: Oceanographic Research Papers, Elsevier, 2009, 56 (9), pp.1555 - 1578. ⟨10.1016/j.dsr.2009.04.003⟩. ⟨hal-03278015⟩



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