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Article

Rhodolith Beds Heterogeneity along the Apulian Continental Shelf (Mediterranean Sea)

1
Department of Biology, University of Bari Aldo Moro, Via Orabona 4, 70125 Bari, Italy
2
CoNISMa, Piazzale Flaminio 9, 00196 Roma, Italy
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Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn, Villa Comunale, 80122 Napoli, Italy
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Department of Life Sciences, University of Trieste, Via Giorgieri 10, 34127 Trieste, Italy
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Department of Biology, University of Naples Federico II, Via Vicinale Cupa Cintia 21, 80126 Napoli, Italy
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Environmental Surveys S.r.l. (ENSU), Via De Gasperi, 74123 Taranto, Italy
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Apulian Regional Agency for the Environmental Prevention and Protection, Corso Trieste 27, 70126 Bari, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2020, 8(10), 813; https://doi.org/10.3390/jmse8100813
Received: 25 September 2020 / Revised: 15 October 2020 / Accepted: 17 October 2020 / Published: 19 October 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Benthic Species and Habitats)
Rhodolith beds represent a key habitat worldwide, from tropical to polar ecosystems. Despite this habitat is considered a hotspot of biodiversity, providing a suite of ecosystem goods and services, still scarce quantitative information is available thus far about rhodolith beds occurrence and ecological role, especially in the Mediterranean Sea. This study reports the composition and patterns of distribution of rhodolith assemblages found in four study areas along ca. 860 km of coast in the Central Mediterranean Sea. These rhodolith beds were studied for the first time and significant differences at all spatial scales have been highlighted, documenting the high variability of this habitat. Rhodolith species composition, morphology and distribution have been discussed considering the potential role of environmental factors in driving these patterns. The need for improving their protection is discussed to complement present conservation and management initiatives, particularly in the frame of the EU Marine Strategy Framework Directive. View Full-Text
Keywords: rhodolith bed; maërl; coralline algae; rhodophyta; habitat mapping; biogenic habitats; conservation; Marine Strategy; Mediterranean Sea rhodolith bed; maërl; coralline algae; rhodophyta; habitat mapping; biogenic habitats; conservation; Marine Strategy; Mediterranean Sea
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MDPI and ACS Style

Chimienti, G.; Rizzo, L.; Kaleb, S.; Falace, A.; Fraschetti, S.; Giosa, F.D.; Tursi, A.; Barbone, E.; Ungaro, N.; Mastrototaro, F. Rhodolith Beds Heterogeneity along the Apulian Continental Shelf (Mediterranean Sea). J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2020, 8, 813. https://doi.org/10.3390/jmse8100813

AMA Style

Chimienti G, Rizzo L, Kaleb S, Falace A, Fraschetti S, Giosa FD, Tursi A, Barbone E, Ungaro N, Mastrototaro F. Rhodolith Beds Heterogeneity along the Apulian Continental Shelf (Mediterranean Sea). Journal of Marine Science and Engineering. 2020; 8(10):813. https://doi.org/10.3390/jmse8100813

Chicago/Turabian Style

Chimienti, Giovanni, Lucia Rizzo, Sara Kaleb, Annalisa Falace, Simonetta Fraschetti, Francesco D. Giosa, Angelo Tursi, Enrico Barbone, Nicola Ungaro, and Francesco Mastrototaro. 2020. "Rhodolith Beds Heterogeneity along the Apulian Continental Shelf (Mediterranean Sea)" Journal of Marine Science and Engineering 8, no. 10: 813. https://doi.org/10.3390/jmse8100813

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