Scientia Marina, Vol 83, No 3 (2019)

Stony corals (Anthozoa: Scleractinia) of Burdwood Bank and neighbouring areas, SW Atlantic Ocean


https://doi.org/10.3989/scimar.04863.10A

Laura Schejter
Instituto de Investigaciones Marinas y Costeras, Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas (IIMyC-CONICET) - Instituto Nacional de Investigación y Desarrollo Pesquero (INIDEP), Argentina
orcid http://orcid.org/0000-0001-5443-4048

Claudia S. Bremec
Instituto de Investigaciones Marinas y Costeras, Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas (IIMyC-CONICET), Argentina
orcid http://orcid.org/0000-0001-5342-7997

Abstract


The presence of ten species of stony corals was recorded at a total of 19 out of 48 sampling stations at Burdwood Bank and neighbouring areas. Scleractinians were recorded only at three stations inside the marine protected area (MPA) Namuncurá I, while the majority of them were recorded deeper than 200 m. Burdwood Bank slope (MPA Namuncurá II + NW slope) was the richest sub-area, with ten species recorded in the present study and another two species mentioned from the literature. For the majority of the species the results here presented represent the only available data in the study area after 50 years (or more), comprising updates of latitudinal and bathymetric ranges. Stony corals were recorded as basibionts of a variety of organisms. Mainly dead skeletons were found providing a suitable settlement substrate for sessile species such as primnoid corals. The presence of a high richness of stony corals on the southern slope of Burdwood Bank, as components of the marine animal forests recorded, also supported the conservation efforts made to create the new MPA named “Namuncurá/Burdwood Bank II” in this region.

Keywords


conservation; cold-water corals; Argentina; MPA; Namuncurá/Burdwood Bank; biodiversity

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