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Provision of refugia and seeding with native bivalves can enhance biodiversity on vertical seawalls

Bradford, TE, Astudillo, JC, Lau, ETC, Perkins, MJ, Lo, CC, Li, TCH, Lam, CS, Ng, TPT, Strain, EMA ORCID: 0000-0003-2165-9544, Steinberg, PD and Leung, KMY 2020 , 'Provision of refugia and seeding with native bivalves can enhance biodiversity on vertical seawalls' , Marine Pollution Bulletin, vol. 160 , pp. 1-9 , doi: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2020.111578.

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Recent studies have suggested that increasing habitat complexity of artificial seawalls by modifying surface heterogeneity could enhance exploitable habitat and therefore species richness and abundance. We tested the effects of adding complex tiles (with crevices/ledges) of different heterogeneity (i.e., flat tiles resembling the seawall vs. tiles with crevices of 2.5 cm or 5.0 cm depth) and seeding with native rock oysters, Saccostrea cuccullata (unseeded vs. seeded) on species richness and abundances of intertidal marine organisms on two vertical seawalls in Hong Kong. Tiles were affixed to the mid-intertidal zone of the seawalls for 12 months. The results showed that the tiles with crevices had greater species richness and cover of sessile epifauna than flat tiles. Seeding tiles with S. cuccullata also facilitated natural recruitment of the same species. Our results support the hypothesis that using eco-engineering to increase habitat complexity can enhance the biodiversity of intertidal marine organisms on seawalls.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Bradford, TE and Astudillo, JC and Lau, ETC and Perkins, MJ and Lo, CC and Li, TCH and Lam, CS and Ng, TPT and Strain, EMA and Steinberg, PD and Leung, KMY
Keywords: eco-engineering, biodiversity, coastal defence, ecological restoration, micro-habitat, biodiversity conservation, reclamation, sustainable development
Journal or Publication Title: Marine Pollution Bulletin
Publisher: Pergamon-Elsevier Science Ltd
ISSN: 0025-326X
DOI / ID Number: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2020.111578
Copyright Information:

© 2020 Elsevier

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