MEPS 363:171-182 (2008)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/meps07463

3D visualization and quantification of marine benthic biogenic structures and particle transport utilizing computer-aided tomography

Rutger Rosenberg1,*, Antoine Grémare2, Jean Claude Duchêne2, Earl Davey3, Michael Frank4

1Department of Marine Ecology, Göteborg University, Kristineberg Marine Research Station, 45034 Fiskebäckskil, Sweden
2Université Bordeaux 1, UMR 5805 EPOC, Station Marine d’Arcachon, 2 Rue de Professeur Jolyet, 33120 Arcachon, France
3US Environmental Protection Agency, 27 Tarzwell Drive, Narragansett, Rhode Island 02882, USA
4Lysekil Hospital, Box 203, 45325 Lysekil, Sweden

ABSTRACT: Computer-aided tomography was used to visualize and quantify biogenic structures (e.g. burrows, shells) in 3 dimensions (3D) by scanning 9 replicate cores obtained from a 41 m deep station in the Gullmarsfjord (Skagerrak, western Sweden). The main objective was to visualize and quantify the biogenic structures and their volumes in the sediment. In addition, the particle transport was studied by adding an aluminum oxide tracer to the sediment–water interface (SWI), which was analysed after 57, 80 and 128 h, in 3 replicate cores each time. A new software programme was developed for rapid and accurate analysis. The fauna in the cores, analysed after scanning, were dominated by the brittle stars Amphiura filiformis and A. chiajei. The volumes of ‘active’ biogenic structures, defined as connecting to the SWI, were generally greatest close to the interface with some secondary peaks, probably related to the position of the disc chamber of the brittle stars. A mean volume of 560 cm3 of biogenic structures per m2 of sediment surface was recorded within the sediment (down to a mean depth of 137 mm, where the biogenic structures ceased to be ‘active’). Ejection of particles to the SWI (mounding) was calculated to be between 4 and 40 mm3 h–1


KEY WORDS: Benthos · Bioturbation · Macrofauna · Tracer · Sediment · Amphiura spp.


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Cite this article as: Rosenberg R, Grémare A, Duchêne JC, Davey E, Frank M (2008) 3D visualization and quantification of marine benthic biogenic structures and particle transport utilizing computer-aided tomography. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 363:171-182. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps07463

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