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Seasonal distribution and abundance of fishes and decapod crustaceans in a Cape Cod estuary

Northeastern Naturalist

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Abstract

Sampling in several habitat types (sand/mud, eelgrass, sand, gravel, macroalgae/mud) during all seasons with a variety of gears in Nauset Marsh, Massachusetts during 1985-1987 found a fauna consisting of 35 fish and 10 decapod crustacean species. Although most of the abundant species were found in several habitat types, species richness and habitat use appeared to be highest for vegetated habitats (eelgrass, macroalgae). The fishes and decapods were numerically dominated by cold-water taxa; however, numerous fish species, represented by rare individuals of predominantly southern forms, enriched the fauna. Species composition of Nauset Marsh could be distinguished from estuaries south of Cape Cod and even from the south shore of the cape. Both fishes and decapods were most abundant during the summer, apparently due to the contributions from spring and summer spawning in the estuary and the adjacent Atlantic Ocean. The location of Nauset Marsh and other estuaries on Cape Cod provide a unique opportunity to evaluate the importance of this region as a faunal boundary to estuarine species.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Seasonal distribution and abundance of fishes and decapod crustaceans in a Cape Cod estuary
Series title:
Northeastern Naturalist
Volume
9
Issue:
3
Year Published:
2002
Language:
English
Contributing office(s):
Patuxent Wildlife Research Center
Description:
285-302
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
First page:
285
Last page:
302
Number of Pages:
18