Influence of artificial reefs on the surrounding infauna: analysis of meiofauna

  • Published source details Danovaro R. (2002) Influence of artificial reefs on the surrounding infauna: analysis of meiofauna. ICES Journal of Marine Science, 59, S356-S362.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Create artificial reefs

Action Link
Subtidal Benthic Invertebrate Conservation
  1. Create artificial reefs

    A replicated, site comparison study in 1997–1998 of sandy sediments surrounding two artificial reefs in the Mediterranean Sea, off the coast of Italy (Danovaro et al. 2002) found that the effects of creating artificial reefs on small invertebrate abundance varied with distance to the reefs. Abundance was lower at the artificial reef sites (87–180 individual/10 cm2) compared to nearby natural sites (146–265 individual/10 cm2). However, abundance was higher at sites adjacent to the artificial reefs 2–20 m away (135–332 individual/10 cm2). Authors suggested that the lower abundance at the artificial reef sites was linked with a higher silt-clay:sand ratio and changes in oxygen penetration. In winter 1997/1998 and summer 1998, small invertebrates were surveyed in the sediments surrounding two artificial reefs (groups of pyramids; material unspecified). One was created in 1987, and the other in 1992. Samples were taken with increasing distance from the reef: one at 0 m (artificial reef site), three at 2–20 m (affected adjacent sites), and one at 50 m (unaffected natural site). Sediment samples (3/station) were collected using a core (4.6 cm diameter, 10 cm depth), and invertebrates (37 µm–1 mm) identified and counted.

    (Summarised by: Anaëlle Lemasson)

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