Mabrouk L.,Gafsa University |
Asma H.,Institute National Des Science Et Des Technology Of La Mer Of Sfax Sfax Tunisia |
Bradai M.N.,Institute National Des Science Et Des Technology Of La Mer Of Sfax Sfax Tunisia
Marine Ecology | Year: 2016
The aim of this research was to study spatial and temporal variation in epiphyte cover and leaf biomass of Posidonia oceanica in Eastern Tunisia. Sampling was conducted at four stations on the Mahdia coast during October and December 2010, and April and August 2011, which correspond respectively to autumn, winter, spring and summer in this area. Posidonia oceanica shoots were collected at two depths (5 and 10 m). Cover of macroinvertebrates and macroalgae was estimated on adult leaves. The results showed that leaf and epiphyte biomasses vary significantly according to sampling date, with the highest values recorded in August. We found a high diversity of epiphytic assemblages on the leaves of P. oceanica with clear qualitative and quantitative dominance of Rhodophyceae compared to other groups, followed by Phaeophyceae. Most epiphyte species on the leaves of P. oceanica in Eastern Tunisia are the same as those in other parts of the Mediterranean Sea. No bathymetrical variation in the epiphytic community was found in our study area, which can be explained by the high levels of water clarity in Mahdia. © 2016 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.