Free Content The phytoplankton distribution in Kingston Harbour, Jamaica

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The purpose of this study was to describe the spatial distribution of zooplankton relative to water quality throughout Kingston Harbour. Routine sampling was conducted monthly at 24 stations in the harbor over a 15-month period. In total, 73 different taxa were identified of which the copepods were most important (38 species). The outer harbor region showed the greatest number of species, while the lowest diversity was recorded at Hunts Bay and in the Upper basin region of Kingston Harbour. Mean abundances for the area were high and ranged from a minimum of 3662 animals m−3 in Hunts Bay, to a maximum of 80,464 animals m−3 in the Inner harbor zone at station 8. Results of the zooplankton community similarity index (PSC), using station 4 (located within the Upper basin) as the 'home' or focal station, pointed to the existence of three groups of stations in Kingston Harbour: Upper basin (stations 1–6), Inner harbor (stations 7–15) and Outer harbor (stations 16–23). Hunts Bay (station 24) was not included in any of these groups. Dendrograms using mean Euclidean distance indicated similar groups. These groups of stations could also be identified by dominance of individual species. Temora turbinata was dominant in the Upper basin group (stations 1–6), Lucifer faxoni and Penilia avirostris in the Inner harbor group (stations 7–15), Paracalanus crassirostris in the Outer harbor group (stations 16–23), and Acartia tonsa in Hunts Bay (station 24). Therefore, it may be more reliable to distinguish the zones in Kingston Harbour on the basis of the zooplankton community composition and species dominance, rather than simply on the basis of abundance and diversity. However, the low diversity (indicated by number of species) and low abundances identified Hunts Bay as the most polluted area of Kingston Harbour.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2003

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  • The Bulletin of Marine Science is dedicated to the dissemination of high quality research from the world's oceans. All aspects of marine science are treated by the Bulletin of Marine Science, including papers in marine biology, biological oceanography, fisheries, marine affairs, applied marine physics, marine geology and geophysics, marine and atmospheric chemistry, and meteorology and physical oceanography.
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