Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Abstract Populations of microcrustaceans were studied for 24 months in two New Jersey high salt marsh impoundments, and in three separate 14 month studies of high salt marsh pools in northeastern Massachusetts. In Massachusetts high marsh pools, dominants were all harpacticoids: Amphiascus pallidus, Cletocamptus deitersi, Harpacticus chelifer, Mesochra lilljeborgii, Metis jousseaumei, and Nitokra lacustris. The cyclopoids Apocyclops spartinus, Halicyclops sp. and the calanoid Eurytemora affinis were also numerically important. While there was extensive overlap, dominants varied to some extent from year to year and among the three studies. The New Jersey saline impoundment fauna showed extreme dominance (low equitability) in the first summer, somewhat less in the second and much less in the third. Total microcrustacean densities also declined each year. Variation in Apocyclops spartinus densities was the major factor, as this species comprised in three consecutive summers, 95, 85 and 51% of the total zooplankton at one station. Diversity as species richness was highest in a New Jersey freshwater impoundment which compared well with South Carolina salt marsh values. Impoundment diversity which was very low, and comparable with that found in a New Jersey Spartina patens marsh, increased each year becoming progressively more like that found in the Massachusetts pools. Vegetation changed significantly in the New Jersey impoundments over the three years. Spartina patens died-off in the first summer, while S. alterniflora gradually declined each year. A visit to the site twenty years later showed all emergent vegetation to be gone. These successional zooplankton and vegetation changes, together with the possible consequences of interrupted marsh-bay exchanges should be considered before undertaking any coastal mosquito control involving permanent flooding.
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