MEPS 171:1-14 (1998)  -  doi:10.3354/meps171001

Determining positions for control locations in environmental studies of estuarine marinas

T. M. Glasby*, A. J. Underwood

Centre for Research on Ecological Impacts of Coastal Cities, Marine Ecology Laboratories, A11, University of Sydney, New South Wales 2006, Australia

ABSTRACT: Recruitment and development of subtidal epibiota were sampled using settlement plates to identify appropriate control locations for tests of environmental impacts of estuarine marinas. Sampling was designed to determine how far any effects of marinas may extend and how the position of a location within an estuary may affect the recruitment and development of epibiota. Marinas may have had minor impacts on epibiotic assemblages, but certainly none that extended further than 1.5 km; hence, locations 1.5 km from marinas could potentially serve as controls. Assemblages at the inner end of a creek were, however, likely to be very different from those at positions closer to the mouth. Thus, for studies of marinas situated at the ends of creeks, control locations would need to be in corresponding positions in adjacent creeks. Without information of this kind, impacts may be either detected erroneously or masked because inappropriate control locations might be used.

KEY WORDS: Subtidal organisms · Fouling · Recruitment · Environmental impact assessment · Australia

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