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Data Paper (Biosciences)
Benthic communities in three Mediterranean touristic ports: MAPMED project
expand article infoEva Chatzinikolaou, Panagiotis Damianidis§, Christina Pavloudi, Aikaterini Vasileiadou, Sarah Faulwetter|, Kleoniki Keklikoglou‡,, Wanda Plaitis, Dimitra Mavraki, Stamatina Nikolopoulou, Christos Arvanitidis‡,#
‡ Hellenic Centre for Marine Research (HCMR), Institute of Marine Biology, Biotechnology and Aquaculture (IMBBC), Heraklion, Crete, Greece
§ Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki, Greece
| Hellenic Centre for Marine Research (HCMR), Institute of Oceanography, Athens, Greece
¶ Biology Department, University of Crete, Heraklion, Crete, Greece
# LifeWatch ERIC, Seville, Spain
Open Access

Abstract

Background

Mediterranean ports are sources of significant economic activity and at the same time they act as recipients of considerable anthropogenic disturbance and pollution. Polluted and low-in-oxygen sediments can negatively impact benthic biodiversity and favour recruitment of opportunistic or invasive species. Macrobenthic communities are an important component of the port biota and can be used as environmental quality indicators. However, a baseline database for benthic biodiversity in Mediterranean ports has not yet been widely established.

New information

Macrobenthic assemblages were recorded in three Mediterranean touristic ports under the framework of the ENPI CBC MED project MAPMED (MAnagement of Port Areas in the MEDiterranean Sea Basin). Samples were collected from Cagliari (Sardinia, Italy), Heraklion (Crete, Greece) and El Kantaoui (Tunisia) ports during February, May and September 2012. The sampling stations were selected according to the different sectors within each port (i.e. leisure, fishing, passenger/cargo vessels and shipyard). A total of 277 taxa belonging to 12 phyla were found, of which the 96 taxa were present in all three ports. El Kantaoui port hosted the highest number of macrobenthic taxa. Mollusca were the most abundant group (34%) in all ports. The highest percentage of opportunistic taxa per station was found before the touristic period in the shipyard of Heraklion port (89.3%).

Keywords

macrobenthos, ports, harbours, Mediterranean, Greece, Italy, Tunisia

Introduction

Mediterranean ports are sources of significant economic activity and they strongly support local, regional and national economic development. The Mediterranean Sea hosts about 480 ports and terminals and is one of the busiest maritime areas of the world (REMPEC 2008). Shipping of goods between the main EU ports and ports located in the Mediterranean reached 598 million tonnes in 2015 (Eurostat 2015), while crude oil transported through the Mediterranean Sea was 421 million tonnes in 2006 (REMPEC 2008). Ports act as recipients of considerable anthropogenic disturbance and pollution due to the activities they are hosting, such as emission of air pollutants, noise, sediment dredging and transport, industrial installations, wastewater discharges, oil spill accidents, storage and spillage of hazardous materials and introduction of invasive species (Darbra et al. 2005). Polluted marine sediments, commonly low oxygen levels and low hydrodynamism can have a negative impact on benthic biota and marine biodiversity, which may favour recruitment by opportunistic or more resistant taxa, including invasive species. Macrobenthic communities are an important component of the port biota and have been commonly used as environmental quality indicators in biomonitoring studies (Gray and Elliot 2010). Therefore, the establishment of a baseline database for benthic biodiversity in Mediterranean ports can offer valuable background information for port management activities, including the identification of biological risks, such as pollution events or invasion by alien species (Mandal and Harkantra 2013).

General description

Purpose: 

This dataset includes macrobenthic taxa identified in three touristic ports in the Mediterranean, located at Cagliari (Sardinia, Italy), Heraklion (Crete, Greece) and El Kantaoui (Tunisia) (Chatzinikolaou and Arvanitidis 2017). Sampling was undertaken seasonally during the ENPI CBC MED project MAPMED in 2012 in different sectors within each port, which were defined according to their distinct usage activities (i.e. leisure, fishing, passenger/cargo vessels and shipyard). Samples were collected during winter (February), before the touristic period (May) and after the touristic period (September) in order to identify the impact of seasonal touristic activities on benthic communities. A detailed comparison of macrobenthic biodiversity amongst different locations - sectors - seasons was performed in order to offer information about the environmental quality at these understudied artificial port environments. A total of 277 taxa belonging to 12 phyla were found, of which 96 taxa were common in all ports. Differences in benthic biodiversity were found between ports and between sectors in each port, while seasonal differences were not apparent (Chatzinikolaou et al. 2018). The El Kantaoui port hosted the highest number of macrobenthic taxa, while the shipyard sector in Heraklion port had the lowest number of taxa. The highest abundance of opportunistic taxa was found in Heraklion port at the passenger ships and shipyard stations.

Project description

Title: 

MAPMED: MAnagement of Port areas in the MEDiterranean sea basin

Personnel: 

Dr Eva Chatzinikolaou (project management, design and implementation of sampling, taxonomic identification), Dr Panagiotis Damianidis (taxonomic identification), Dr Christina Pavloudi (taxonomic identification), Dr Katerina Vasileiadou (taxonomic identification), Dr Sarah Faulwetter (taxonomic identification), Kleoniki Keklikoglou (taxonomic identification), Wanda Plaiti (taxonomic identification), Dimitra Mavraki (data management), Stamatina Nikolopoulou (data management) and Dr Christos Arvanitidis (principal investigator).

Study area description: 

Mediterranean touristic ports: Cagliari (Sardinia, Italy), Heraklion (Crete, Greece) and El Kantaoui (Tunisia).

Design description: 

During this study, differences in macrobenthic assemblages were examined across three levels: a) geographical differences (three countries), b) use-sectoral differences (3-5 stations within ports) and c) temporal differences (three seasons in relation to the touristic period).

Funding: 

This project has been financed by the European Union under the ENPI CBC Mediterranean Sea Basin Programme in the framework of the project “MAnagement of Port areas in the MEDiterranean Sea Basin” (MAPMED) (Grand Contract 6/2019-25/ 7/2011). This publication has been supported by the LifeWatchGreece infrastructure (MIS 384676), funded by the Greek Government under the General Secretariat of Research and Technology (GSRT), ESFRI Projects, National Strategic Reference Framework (NSRF) and from LifeWatch ERIC.

Sampling methods

Sampling description: 

Five replicates of sediment samples were collected from each station using a box corer (13.5 cm × 13.5 cm × 16 cm) manually operated from a small boat. A Garmin 60 CS portable GPS and a depth meter were available on board to record the exact position and depth of each station respectively. The sediment samples were sieved through a 0.5 mm sieve and then fixed and preserved in 5% formaldehyde buffered with seawater and stained with Rose Bengal. The benthic organisms were sorted out of the sediment under a stereoscope, counted and identified down to the lowest possible taxonomic level.

Quality control: 

All scientific names were standardised against the World Register of Marine Species using the Taxon Match tool (http://www.marinespecies.org/aphia.php?p=match) on 10-03-2021.

Geographic coverage

Description: 

Three Mediterranean touristic ports were selected as study sites and they are presented in Fig. 1. The port of Cagliari (Fig. 1B) is a large port (2.07 km2) located on the southern coast of Sardinia (Italy). The port of Heraklion (Fig. 1C) is medium-sized (0.87 km2) and it is located on the northern coast of Crete (Greece). The port of El Kantaoui (Fig. 1D) is a small touristic marina (0.04 km2) on the eastern Tunisian coast. Both the ports of Heraklion and Cagliari host a leisure marina, large passenger, cruise and cargo vessels, while El Kantaoui port offers moorings only for smaller fishing boats, luxury yachts and boats for sporting activities. Heraklion port has also a shipyard section.

Figure 1.  

The three Mediterranean touristic ports (A) and location of the sampling stations in Cagliari (B), Heraklion (C) and El Kantaoui (D)

Sampling stations were selected in order to achieve good spatial coverage in each port and also to represent sectors with different uses according to the Water Management Units in MAPMED Action Plans (MAPMED 2015). Four stations were selected in the port of Heraklion, five stations in the port of Cagliari and three stations in the port of El Kantaoui (Table 1).

Table 1.

Maximum depth (m), use sectors and coordinates of all sampling stations in the Meditarranean ports of Cagliari, Heraklion and El Kantaoui.

Port

Station

Depth (m)

Port sector

Coordinates

Cagliari

C1

7.8

Leisure/fishing

39°12'12.2''N; 09°07'25.1''E

C2

4.5

Leisure/fishing

39°12'23.0''N; 09°07'16.7''E

C3

8.3

Leisure/fishing

39°12'34.0''N; 09°06'45.9''E

C4

13.5

Passenger/cargo ships

39°12'29.7''N; 09°06'14.8''E

C5

11.4

Intense maritime traffic

39°12'01.7''N; 09°06'45.2''E

Heraklion

H1

3.7

Leisure/fishing

35°20'38.7''N; 25°08'12.4''E

H3

19.5

Passenger ships

35°20'45.6''N; 25°08'43.3''E

H4

10.5

Cargo ships

35°20'39.5''N; 25°08'55.5''E

H5

19.0

Shipyard

35°20'42.9''N; 25°09'08.6''E

El Kantaoui

E1

2.5

Leisure/fishing

35°53'39.9''N; 10°35'52.1''E

E2

4.0

Leisure/fishing

35°53'34.6''N; 10°35'58.9''E

E3

3.2

Leisure/fishing

35°53'34.1''N; 10°36'05.2''E

Coordinates: 

33.724 and 41.311 Latitude; 7.954 and 27.598 Longitude.

Taxonomic coverage

Description: 

The dataset includes information on macrobenthic assemblages found in the three Mediterranean touristic ports belonging to the following 12 phyla: Annelida, Mollusca, Arthropoda, Echinodermata, Sipuncula, Nemertea, Cnidaria, Phoronida, Chordata, Foraminifera, Platyhelminthes and Priapulida (Table 2).

Table 2.

List of taxa (phylum, class, family and species name) found in the three Mediterranean touristic ports.

Phylum Class Family Species Cagliari Heraklion El Kantaoui
Annelida Polychaeta Ampharetidae Amage adspersa x
Annelida Polychaeta Amphinomidae Chloeia viridis x
Annelida Polychaeta Amphinomidae Eurythoe complanata x
Annelida Polychaeta Capitellidae Capitella capitata x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Capitellidae Capitella giardi x x
Annelida Polychaeta Capitellidae Heteromastus filiformis x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Capitellidae Notomastus latericeus x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Chaetopteridae Spiochaetopterus costarum x x
Annelida Polychaeta Cirratulidae Aphelochaeta filiformis x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Cirratulidae Aphelochaeta marioni x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Cirratulidae Cirriformia tentaculata x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Cirratulidae Tharyx killariensis x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Cossuridae Cossura soyeri x x
Annelida Polychaeta Dorvilleidae Dorvillea atlantica x
Annelida Polychaeta Dorvilleidae Dorvillea rubrovittata x x
Annelida Polychaeta Dorvilleidae Protodorvillea kefersteini x x
Annelida Polychaeta Dorvilleidae Schistomeringos rudolphi x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Eunicidae Eunice vittata x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Eunicidae Lysidice unicornis x
Annelida Polychaeta Flabelligeridae Piromis eruca x x
Annelida Polychaeta Glyceridae Glycera lapidum x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Glyceridae Glycera tesselata x
Annelida Polychaeta Glyceridae Glycera tridactyla x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Goniadidae Goniada emerita x
Annelida Polychaeta Hesionidae Psamathe fusca x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Lumbrineridae Hilbigneris gracilis x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Lumbrineridae Lumbrineris latreilli x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Lumbrineridae Scoletoma funchalensis x
Annelida Polychaeta Magelonidae Magelona minuta x
Annelida Polychaeta Maldanidae Euclymene palermitana x x
Annelida Polychaeta Maldanidae Praxillella affinis x x
Annelida Polychaeta Maldanidae Praxillella gracilis x x
Annelida Polychaeta Melinnidae Melinna palmata x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Nephtyidae Nephtys caeca x x
Annelida Polychaeta Nephtyidae Nephtys hystricis x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Nephtyidae Nephtys incisa x
Annelida Polychaeta Nereididae Neanthes acuminata x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Nereididae Nereis rava x
Annelida Polychaeta Nereididae Nereis zonata x
Annelida Polychaeta Onuphidae Aponuphis bilineata x x
Annelida Polychaeta Onuphidae Aponuphis brementi x x
Annelida Polychaeta Onuphidae Diopatra neapolitana x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Opheliidae Polyophthalmus pictus x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Orbiniidae Phylo foetida x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Orbiniidae Scoloplos (Scoloplos) armiger x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Oweniidae Owenia fusiformis x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Paraonidae Aricidea (Aricidea) fragilis x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Paraonidae Levinsenia gracilis x x
Annelida Polychaeta Paraonidae Paradoneis lyra x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Pectinariidae Lagis koreni x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Phyllodocidae Eteone longa x
Annelida Polychaeta Phyllodocidae Mysta picta x
Annelida Polychaeta Phyllodocidae Phyllodoce sp. x
Annelida Polychaeta Pilargidae Ancistrosyllis groenlandica x
Annelida Polychaeta Poecilochaetidae Poecilochaetus serpens x x
Annelida Polychaeta Polynoidae Harmothoe impar x x
Annelida Polychaeta Polynoidae Harmothoe spinifera x x
Annelida Polychaeta Sabellidae Amphiglena mediterranea x
Annelida Polychaeta Sabellidae Dialychone dunerificta x
Annelida Polychaeta Sabellidae Pseudopotamilla reniformis x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Scalibregmatidae Polyphysia crassa x
Annelida Polychaeta Serpulidae Serpula vermicularis x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Spionidae Polydora ciliata x
Annelida Polychaeta Spionidae Prionospio cirrifera x x
Annelida Polychaeta Spionidae Prionospio malmgreni x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Spionidae Spio filicornis x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Sternaspidae Sternaspis scutata x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Syllidae Exogone sp. x
Annelida Polychaeta Syllidae Sphaerosyllis hystrix x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Syllidae Syllis armillaris x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Syllidae Syllis garciai x
Annelida Polychaeta Syllidae Syllis hyalina x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Syllidae Syllis prolifera x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Terebellidae Lanice conchilega x x
Annelida Polychaeta Terebellidae Pista cristata x x x
Annelida Polychaeta Trichobranchidae Terebellides stroemii x
Annelida Polychaeta Echiura ind. x x x
Annelida Clitellata Oligochaeta ind. x x x
Arthropoda Arachnida Pontarachnidae Pontarachna punctulum x
Arthropoda Insecta Insecta ind. x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Ampeliscidae Ampelisca diadema x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Ampeliscidae Ampelisca ledoyeri x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Amphilochidae Apolochus neapolitanus x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Anthuridae Anthuridae ind. x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Anthuridae Cyathura carinata x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Aoridae Aora sp. x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Aoridae Aora gracilis x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Aoridae Aora spinicornis x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Aoridae Aoridae ind. x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Aoridae Autonoe spiniventris x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Aoridae Lembos websteri x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Aoridae Microdeutopus sp. x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Aoridae Microdeutopus anomalus x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Aoridae Microdeutopus stationis x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Aoridae Microdeutopus versiculatus x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Apseudidae Apseudopsis mediterraneus x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Atylidae Nototropis guttatus x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Bodotriidae Bodotria scorpioides x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Bodotriidae Iphinoe serrata x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Bodotriidae Iphinoe tenella x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Bodotriidae Iphinoe trispinosa x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Bodotriidae Vaunthompsonia cristata x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Calliopiidae Apherusa mediterranea x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Caprellidae Liropus elongatus x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Caprellidae Phtisica marina x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Caprellidae Pseudolirius kroyeri x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Corophiidae Apocorophium acutum x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Corophiidae Leptocheirus sp. x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Corophiidae Medicorophium minimum x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Corophiidae Medicorophium runcicorne x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Dexaminidae Dexamine spinosa x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Diastylidae Diastylis rugosa x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Gammaridae Gammaridae ind. x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Gnathiidae Gnathia sp. x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Holognathidae Cleantis prismatica x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Hyalidae Apohyale perieri x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Hyalidae Parhyale aquilina x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Idoteidae Idotea sp. x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Ischyroceridae Ericthonius punctatus x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Ischyroceridae Jassa marmorata x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Leptocheliidae Chondrochelia savignyi x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Leucothoidae Leucothoe incisa x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Maeridae Elasmopus rapax x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Maeridae Maera grossimana x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Melitidae Melita hergensis x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Microprotopidae Microprotopus maculatus x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Nannastacidae Cumella (Cumella) pygmaea x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Nannastacidae Nannastacus sp. x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Nuuanuidae Gammarella fucicola x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Oedicerotidae Kroyera carinata x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Oedicerotidae Perioculodes longimanus x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Oedicerotidae Pontocrates arenarius x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Oedicerotidae Synchelidium haplocheles x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Oedicerotidae Synchelidium maculatum x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Paranthuridae Paranthura japonica x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Photidae Cerapopsis longipes x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Sphaeromatidae Dynamene bidentata x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Sphaeromatidae Sphaeroma sp. x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Stenothoidae Stenothoe elachista x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Tanaididae Tanais dulongii x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Amphipoda ind. x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Isopoda ind. x x x
Arthropoda Malacostraca Tanaidacea ind. x
Arthropoda Pycnogonida Pycnogonida ind.1 x
Arthropoda Pycnogonida Pycnogonida ind.2 x
Chordata Ascidiacea Ascidiacea ind. x
Chordata Ascidiacea Styelidae Botryllus sp. x
Chordata Pisces ind. x
Cnidaria Anthozoa Anthozoa ind. x x x
Cnidaria Hydrozoa Hydrozoa ind. x x
Echinodermata Asteroidea Asteroidea ind. x x
Echinodermata Holothuroidea Cucumariidae Trachythyone sp. x
Echinodermata Holothuroidea Holothuroidea ind.1 x x
Echinodermata Holothuroidea Holothuroidea ind.2 x
Echinodermata Ophiuroidea Amphiuridae Amphiura chiajei x x x
Echinodermata Ophiuroidea Ophiodermatidae Ophioderma longicaudum x x x
Echinodermata Ophiuroidea Ophiuroidea ind.1 x x x
Echinodermata Ophiuroidea Ophiuroidea ind.2 x x x
Echinodermata Ophiuroidea Ophiuroidea ind.3 x
Foraminifera Foraminifera ind. x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Arcidae Arca tetragona x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Cardiidae Cerastoderma glaucum x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Cardiidae Papillicardium minimum x x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Cardiidae Papillicardium papillosum x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Cardiidae Parvicardium exiguum x x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Corbulidae Varicorbula gibba x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Lasaeidae Kurtiella bidentata x x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Lasaeidae Litigiella glabra x x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Lucinidae Ctena decussata x x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Lucinidae Loripes orbiculatus x x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Lucinidae Loripinus fragilis x
Mollusca Bivalvia Lucinidae Lucinella divaricata x x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Lucinidae Myrtea spinifera x x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Mytilidae Modiolus adriaticus x x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Mytilidae Modiolus barbatus x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Mytilidae Musculus subpictus x x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Mytilidae Mytilus edulis x
Mollusca Bivalvia Nuculanidae Lembulus pella x x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Nuculidae Nucula nitidosa x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Pharidae Pharus legumen x
Mollusca Bivalvia Semelidae Abra alba x x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Semelidae Abra prismatica x
Mollusca Bivalvia Solemyidae Solemya togata x
Mollusca Bivalvia Tellinidae Asbjornsenia pygmaea x
Mollusca Bivalvia Tellinidae Gastrana fragilis x
Mollusca Bivalvia Tellinidae Macomopsis cumana x
Mollusca Bivalvia Tellinidae Moerella donacina x x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Tellinidae Peronidia albicans x x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Thraciidae Thracia phaseolina x
Mollusca Bivalvia Veneridae Chamelea gallina x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Veneridae Dosinia lupinus x x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Veneridae Gouldia minima x x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Veneridae Pitar rudis x
Mollusca Bivalvia Veneridae Ruditapes decussatus x x
Mollusca Bivalvia Veneridae Venerupis lucens x x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Bullidae Bulla striata x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Caecidae Caecum subannulatum x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Cerithiidae Bittium latreillii x x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Cerithiidae Bittium reticulatum x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Cerithiidae Cerithium protractum x
Mollusca Gastropoda Cerithiidae Cerithium scabridum x
Mollusca Gastropoda Cerithiidae Cerithium vulgatum x
Mollusca Gastropoda Cerithiopsidae Cerithiopsis minima x
Mollusca Gastropoda Conidae Conus ventricosus x
Mollusca Gastropoda Epitoniidae Epitonium clathrus x
Mollusca Gastropoda Eulimidae Eulima bilineata x
Mollusca Gastropoda Eulimidae Parvioris ibizenca x
Mollusca Gastropoda Granulinidae Granulina marginata x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Mangeliidae Mangelia paciniana x
Mollusca Gastropoda Mangeliidae Sorgenfreispira brachystoma x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Muricidae Hexaplex trunculus x x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Muricidae Nucella lapillus x
Mollusca Gastropoda Nassariidae Tritia corniculum x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Nassariidae Tritia reticulata x x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Nassariidae Tritia varicosa x x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Naticidae Neverita josephinia x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Neritidae Smaragdia viridis x
Mollusca Gastropoda Omalogyridae Ammonicera rota x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Phasianellidae Tricolia pullus x
Mollusca Gastropoda Phasianellidae Tricolia speciosa x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Phasianellidae Tricolia tenuis x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Pyramidellidae Chrysallida indistincta x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Pyramidellidae Eulimella acicula x
Mollusca Gastropoda Pyramidellidae Megastomia conoidea x x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Pyramidellidae Odostomia unidentata x
Mollusca Gastropoda Pyramidellidae Ondina diaphana x x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Pyramidellidae Parthenina terebellum x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Pyramidellidae Pyrgiscus rufus x
Mollusca Gastropoda Pyramidellidae Turbonilla gradata x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Pyramidellidae Turbonilla micans x
Mollusca Gastropoda Pyramidellidae Turbonilla multilirata x
Mollusca Gastropoda Pyramidellidae Turbonilla pumila x
Mollusca Gastropoda Raphitomidae Raphitoma philberti x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Retusidae Retusa truncatula x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Retusidae Retusa umbilicata x
Mollusca Gastropoda Rissoidae Alvania algeriana x
Mollusca Gastropoda Rissoidae Alvania cimex x x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Rissoidae Alvania discors x
Mollusca Gastropoda Rissoidae Alvania mamillata x x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Rissoidae Manzonia crassa x
Mollusca Gastropoda Rissoidae Pusillina marginata x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Rissoidae Pusillina radiata x x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Rissoidae Rissoa aartseni x
Mollusca Gastropoda Rissoidae Rissoa splendida x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Skeneidae Skenea serpuloides x
Mollusca Gastropoda Trochidae Gibbula ardens x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Trochidae Gibbula magus x
Mollusca Gastropoda Trochidae Jujubinus gravinae x
Mollusca Gastropoda Trochidae Jujubinus karpathoensis x
Mollusca Gastropoda Trochidae Jujubinus montagui x
Mollusca Gastropoda Trochidae Jujubinus striatus x x
Mollusca Gastropoda Trochidae Jujubinus unidentatus x
Mollusca Gastropoda Trochidae Steromphala adansonii x
Mollusca Gastropoda Trochidae Steromphala varia x x
Mollusca Scaphopoda Dentaliidae Antalis dentalis x x
Mollusca Scaphopoda Fustiariidae Fustiaria rubescens x
Nemertea Hoplonemertea Amphiporidae Amphiporus sp. x x
Nemertea Hoplonemertea Carcinonemertidae Carcinonemertes carcinophila x
Nemertea Hoplonemertea Drepanophoridae Drepanophorus sp. x
Nemertea Hoplonemertea Oerstediidae Oerstedia dorsalis x
Nemertea Hoplonemertea Ototyphlonemertidae Ototyphlonemertes duplex x
Nemertea Hoplonemertea Prosorhochmidae Prosorhochmus sp. x x
Nemertea Hoplonemertea Tetrastemmatidae Tetrastemma sp. x
Nemertea Palaeonemertea Cephalotrichidae Cephalothrix sp. x
Nemertea Pilidiophora Lineidae Micrura sp. x x
Nemertea Nemertea ind.1 x x
Nemertea Nemertea ind.2 x x x
Nemertea Nemertea ind.3 x
Nemertea Nemertea ind.4 x x x
Phoronida Phoronida ind. x x
Platyhelminthes Turbellaria Turbellaria ind. x
Priapulida Priapulida ind. x
Sipuncula Phascolosomatidea Phascolosomatidae Phascolosoma sp. x x x
Sipuncula Sipunculidea Sipunculidae Sipunculus (Sipunculus) nudus x
Sipuncula Sipuncula ind.1 x x x
Sipuncula Sipuncula ind.2 x
Sipuncula Sipuncula ind.3 x x x

A total of 46,187 individuals were identified down to the lowest possible taxonomic level, from which 15,535 were found in Cagliari port, 11,571 in Heraklion port and 19,081 in El Kantaoui port. A total of 277 macrofaunal taxa were identified in the three ports, from which 32 were present exclusively in Cagliari port, 22 were found only in Heraklion port and 53 were found only in El Kantaoui port. A total of 96 taxa were common between all three Mediterranean ports (Fig. 2). The highest number of taxa in total was found in El Kantaoui port (206), while Cagliari and Heraklion ports had 170 and 165 taxa in total, respectively.

Figure 2.  

Chart showing number of common and unique taxa in the three Mediterranean ports (Cagliari, Heraklion and El Kantaoui).

Mollusca were the most abundant group (34.7%), Annelida (28.2%) and Arthropoda (24.2%) were also highly represented, while each of the remaining groups contributed less than 5% in the benthic assemblages studied (Fig. 3).

Figure 3.  

Distribution of the different phyla found in the three Mediterranean ports (Cagliari, Heraklion and El Kantaoui).

The percentage of opportunistic taxa abundances (i.e. short-lived taxa often characterising disturbed or stressed habitats) was calculated for each station as the percentage of abundances for Capitellidae, Cirratulidae, Spionidae and Oligochaeta taxa (Pearson and Rosenberg 1978, Munari et al. 2005) in the total sample (Fig. 4). The highest percentages (> 50%) of opportunistic taxa abundances were found in Heraklion port at stations H3 (passenger ships) during all seasons and at H5 (shipyard station) in winter and especially before summer. Additionally, in El Kantaoui station E1 (leisure boats), the percentage of opportunistic taxa abundance increased before summer. The percentage of opportunists in Cagliari was generally lower than in the other ports.

Figure 4.  

Percentage (%) of opportunistic taxa abundances in the different stations of Cagliari port (purple: C1, C2, C3, C4 and C5), Heraklion port (orange: H1, H3, H4 and H5) and El Kantaoui (blue: E1, E2 and E3) during the three differerent sampling seasons (dark colours: winter, medium colours: before summer, light colours: after summer).

Additional statistical analysis has been applied to the species composition matrices of the specific dataset by Chatzinikolaou et al. (2018) and Dimitriou et al. (2020) in order to explore the multivariate patterns of benthic assemblages and to calculate benthic diversity and biotic indices for the assessment of the ecological status of the habitats. A detailed comparison of macrobenthic biodiversity amongst the different locations - sectors - seasons indicated significant differences between ports and between sectors in each port, while seasonal differences were not apparent (Chatzinikolaou et al. 2018).

Temporal coverage

Data range: 
2012-2-13 - 2012-9-25.
Notes: 

Three seasonal sampling campaigns were carried out during 2012: one in winter (February), one in spring before the beginning of the touristic season (May) and one in late summer after the touristic season (September).

Collection data

Collection name: 
Benthic communities and environmental parameters in three Mediterranean ports (Sardinia, Crete and Tunisia).
Specimen preservation method: 
5% formaldehyde buffered with seawater.
Curatorial unit: 
Hellenic Centre for Marine Research (HCMR), Institute of Marine Biology, Biotechnology and Aquaculture (IMBBC), Heraklion, Crete, Greece.

Usage licence

Usage licence: 
Open Data Commons Attribution License
IP rights notes: 

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) 4.0 License. All data in the database can be freely used provided it is fully cited even if only partially used.

Data resources

Data package title: 
Benthic communities and environmental parameters in three Mediterranean ports (Sardinia, Crete and Tunisia).
Number of data sets: 
1
Data set name: 
Benthic communities and environmental parameters in three Mediterranean ports (Sardinia, Crete and Tunisia).
Character set: 
UTF-8
Data format: 
Darwin Core Archive.
Description: 

The dataset is available via the MedOBIS (Mediterranean node of Ocean Biodiversity Information System), Integrated Publishing Toolkit (IPT) which has been established through the LifeWatchGreece Research Infrastructure and is hosted in the Institute of Marine Biology, Biotechnology and Aquaculture (IMBBC) of the Hellenic Centre for Marine Research (HCMR). The data are also harvested by and made available through the Ocean Biodiversity Information System (OBIS). The dataset is available as a DarwinCoreArchive and all fields are mapped to DarwinCore terms.

This publication refers to the most recent version of the dataset available through the IPT server or MedOBIS. Future changes to the dataset due to quality control activities might change its content or structure.

The current publication refers to the "occurrence" source file (txt file) that is associated with the particular dataset. Additional details about the sampling events can be found in the "event" source file (txt file) associated with the same dataset.

Column label Column description
id A unique identifier for the record within the dataset or collection, auto-incrementing number automatically added by the system (same with eventID).
eventID An identifier for the set of information associated with an Event (something that occurs at a place and time).
samplingProtocol The description of the method or protocol used for sample collection.
eventDate The date-time or interval during which an Event occurred.
year The four-digit year in which the Event occurred, according to the Common Era Calendar.
month The integer month in which the Event occurred.
day The integer day of the month on which the Event occurred.
eventRemarks Comments or notes about the Event.
locationID An identifier for the set of location information (station name).
locality The specific description of the place.
minimumDepthInMetres The lesser depth of a range of depth below the local surface, in metres.
maximumDepthInMetres The greater depth of a range of depth below the local surface, in metres.
decimalLatitude The geographic latitude (in decimal degrees, using the spatial reference system given in geodeticDatum) of the geographic centre of a Location. Positive values are north of the Equator, negative values are south of it. Legal values lie between -90 and 90, inclusive.
decimalLongitude The geographic longitude (in decimal degrees, using the spatial reference system given in geodeticDatum) of the geographic centre of a Location. Positive values are east of the Greenwich Meridian, negative values are west of it. Legal values lie between -180 and 180, inclusive.
geodeticDatum The ellipsoid, geodetic datum or spatial reference system (SRS) upon which the geographic coordinates given in decimalLatitude and decimalLongitude are based.
coordinateUncertaintyInMetres The horizontal distance (in metres) from the given decimalLatitude and decimalLongitude describing the smallest circle containing the whole of the Location.
georeferenceProtocol A description or reference to the methods used to determine the spatial footprint, coordinates and uncertainties.
institutionCode The name (or acronym) in use by the institution having custody of the object (s) or information referred to in the record.
collectionCode An identifier for the collection or dataset from which the record was derived.
basisOfRecord The specific nature of the data record.
occurrenceID An identifier for the Occurrence (as opposed to a particular digital record of the occurrence).
catalogNumber An identifier (preferably unique) for the record within the dataset or collection.
individualCount The number of individuals represented present at the time of the Occurrence.
occurrenceStatus A statement about the presence or absence of a Taxon at a Location.
scientificNameID An identifier for the nomenclatural (not taxonomic) details of a scientific name (Isid of WORMS).
scientificName The full scientific name, not including authorship.
kingdom The full scientific name of the kingdom in which the taxon is classified.
phylum The full scientific name of the phylum in which the taxon is classified.
class The full scientific name of the class in which the taxon is classified.
order The full scientific name of the order in which the taxon is classified.
family The full scientific name of the family in which the taxon is classified.
genus The full scientific name of the genus in which the taxon is classified.
specificEpithet The species epithet of the scientificName.
scientificNameAuthorship The authorship information for the scientificName formatted according to the conventions of the applicable nomenclaturalCode.
nomenclaturalCode The nomenclatural code (or codes in the case of an ambiregnal name) under which the scientificName is constructed.
taxonRemarks Comments or notes about the taxon or name in the original dataset file.

Acknowledgements

This publication has been produced with the financial assistance of the European Union under the ENPI CBC Mediterranean Sea Basin Programme in the framework of the project “MAnagement of Port areas in the MEDiterranean Sea Basin” (MAPMED) (Grand Contract 6/2019-25/7/2011). The contents of this document are the sole responsibility of HCMR and can under no circumstances be regarded as reflecting the position of the European Union or of the Programme's management structures.The authors would like to thank the Management Authorities of the ports of Cagliari, Heraklion and El Kantaoui for their support during the sampling campaigns, as well as all the participating project partners.

Author contributions

Dr Eva Chatzinikolaou (writing of manuscript, project management, design and implementation of sampling, taxonomic identification), Dr Panagiotis Damianidis (taxonomic identification), Dr Christina Pavloudi (taxonomic identification), Dr Katerina Vasileiadou (taxonomic identification), Dr Sarah Faulwetter (taxonomic identification), Kleoniki Keklikoglou (taxonomic identification), Wanda Plaiti (taxonomic identification), Dimitra Mavraki (data management), Stamatina Nikolopoulou (data management) and Dr Christos Arvanitidis (principal investigator).

References