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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Effects of an artificial reef on the surrounding soft-bottom community (central Adriatic Sea)

Published source details

Fabi G. (2002) Effects of an artificial reef on the surrounding soft-bottom community (central Adriatic Sea). ICES Journal of Marine Science, 59, S343-S349


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Create artificial reefs Subtidal Benthic Invertebrate Conservation

A site comparison study in 1997–1999 of sandy sediments surrounding an artificial reef and at a natural site in the Mediterranean Sea, off the coast of Italy (Fabi et al. 2002) found that invertebrate species richness and abundance tended to be similar in the sediments inside the artificial reef area and directly adjacent to it, but lower than at a nearby natural site. Data were not statistically tested. Total invertebrate species richness was 91–109 species/station inside the reef area, 79–88/station 2–20 m away, 92/station 50 m away, and 96/station at the natural site. Average invertebrate abundance was 930–1,000 individuals/m2 inside the reef area, 750–930/m2 2–20 m away, 1,010/m2 50 m away, and 2,060/m2 at the natural site. An artificial reef made of 29 concrete pyramids was created in 1987. Seasonally in 1997–1999, invertebrates were surveyed in the sediments at 17 stations: six within the reef area, eight 2–20 m from the edge of the reef, two 50 m from the reef, and one at a natural site (2.5 nm away). Invertebrates (>0.5 mm) were sampled using a suction sampler from 1,600 cm2 quadrats (3 quadrats/station/survey), identified and counted.

(Summarised by Anaëlle Lemasson)