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The temporal variation in the meiobenthos along a bathymetrical gradient (‘Hausgarten’, Arctica): impact of climate oscillations

Dutch title: Temporele variatie in het meiobenthos langsheen een bathymetrisch transect ('Hausgarten', Arctica): impact van klimaatoscillaties
Reference no: 23260+21260
Period: October 2002 till October 2006
Status: Completed

Institutes (2)  Top 
  • Universiteit Gent; Faculteit Wetenschappen; Vakgroep Biologie; Onderzoeksgroep Mariene Biologie (MARBIOL), more
  • Vlaamse overheid; Beleidsdomein Economie, Wetenschap en Innovatie; Agentschap voor Innovatie door Wetenschap en Technologie (IWT), more, sponsor

As part of the multidisciplinary study at the Hausgarten site, coordinated by AWI, the impact of changes in food supply, in addition to other environmental variables, on the smallest sized bottom fauna, the meiobenthos, is studied along a bathymetric transect from Vestnesa Ridge up to Molloy Deep, over a time period of 5 years. Since this transect is running parallel to the retreating Ice Margin it is expected that this area will be impacted by changing ice conditions. Emphasis is on the two most abundant meiobenthic taxa in the Arctic deep sea, nematodes and copepods which will be identified up to species level. These taxa are not only numerous but also diverse and therefore ideal model organisms to study benthic ecosystem processes.

Sampling was performed with the German ice breaker R/V Polarstern during the expeditions Ark-XVI till Ark-XX in summer of 2000 till 2004. Sediment samples were taken with a multi corer (MUC) to avoid disturbance of the surface sediments.
A grant from the Flemish Institute for the Advancement of Scientific-Technological Research in Industry (IWT) finances this research. Promoter is Prof. Dr. Ann Vanreusel and co-promoters are Dr. Sandra Vanhove and Dr. Thomas Soltwedel.

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