The effects of stress on benthic algal communities

Cox, E.J. and Norton, T.A. (1994) The effects of stress on benthic algal communities. In: Sutcliffe, D.W. (ed.) Water quality & stress indicators in marine and freshwater systems: linking levels of organisation. Ambleside, UK, Freshwater Biological Association, pp. 1-14. (FBA Special Publications,4)

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Abstract

The effects of stress on both microalgal and macroalgal communities are considered. On one hand the contrasting approaches of studies of these two communities reflect intrinsic differences in plant size, longevity and ease of handling. On the other hand they reveal that biological monitoring of the potentially deleterious effects of man's activities has focused largely on freshwater environments in which macroalgae only occasionally dominate. Large conspicuous plants can be readily investigated as individuals, whereas it is virtually impossible to trace effects of stress on an individual cell of a vegetatively-reproducing microalga; a population approach is almost inevitably necessary. However, rapid turnover rates, a spectrum of ecological characteristics distributed between many taxa, and the potential for statistical analysis, have facilitated the use of microalgae in environmental impact studies. Failure to extend such investigations into marine systems rests as much on man's ability to ignore environmental deterioration until it affects his quality of life as on the visual dominance of seaweeds around our coasts. However, large gaps remain in our knowledge of both large and small algae; some reported community changes over time are suspect, and the causes of even blatant changes are not always apparent.

Item Type: Book Section
Title: The effects of stress on benthic algal communities
Personal Creator/Author:
CreatorsEmail
Cox, E.J.
Norton, T.A.
Title of Book: Water quality & stress indicators in marine and freshwater systems: linking levels of organisation
Editors:
EditorsEmail
Sutcliffe, D.W.
Refereed: No
Series Name: FBA Special Publications
Number: 4
Page Range: pp. 1-14
Date: 1994
Publisher: Freshwater Biological Association
Place of Publication: Ambleside, UK
ISBN: 0-900386-53-3
Issuing Agency: Freshwater Biological Association
Uncontrolled Keywords: Benthos; Algae; Aquatic communities; Biological stress; Community composition; Seaweeds; Pollution effects
Subjects: Ecology
Limnology
Item ID: 5302
Depositing User: Hardy B Schwamm
Date Deposited: 10 May 2011 13:30
Last Modified: 29 Sep 2011 15:07
URI: http://aquaticcommons.org/id/eprint/5302

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