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Marine Ecology Progress Series

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MEPS 163:245-251 (1998)  -  doi:10.3354/meps163245

Weight-to-weight conversion factors for marine benthic macroinvertebrates

Anthony Ricciardi*, Edwin Bourget

GIROQ, Département de Biologie, Université Laval, Ste-Foy, Québec G1K 7P4, Canada

The measurement of macroinvertebrate biomass involves time-consuming procedures and the destruction of specimens. However, from simple wet weight (WW) measurements, conversion factors provide rapid estimates of ash-free dry weight (AFDW) that facilitate large-scale comparisons of secondary production and energy flow. From a compilation of published and unpublished data, we have calculated general conversion factors for 28 taxonomic groups of benthic marine macroinvertebrates, as well as for several species of commercial importance. Despite methodological and regional differences among studies, narrow confidence limits surrounded mean values for converting from WW to AFDW for polychaetes (16%), prosobranch gastropods (7.5%), bivalves (5.8%), amphipods (16%), and decapods (16.5%).

Biomass · Dry weight · Conversion factors · Marine invertebrates · Energy flow · Benthos

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