THE ABUNDANCE AND DIVERSITY OF BENTHIC CRUSTACEANS ALONG THE COASTAL ZONE OF WESTERN LIBYA

The abundance and diversity of benthic crustaceans along the coastal zone of Western Libya

Najla M. Abushaala, Taher Shaibi, Hassan M. Howaege

Zoology Department, Faculty of Science, University of Tripoli, P.O.Box: 13793, Tripoli, LIBYA

Abstract

This study was conducted in the intertidal zone of six rocky-substrate stations on the western Libyan coast: EL-Shajara harbour, Tajura, Ain azargh, Siahia Regata, Sabratha and Tellil, with a sectorial belt of 35-50 m long vertical to the coast and divided into meters, each square meter representing one sample. Samples were collected during September-October 2004 using a 25 × 25 cm quadrate. As for benthic animals recorded in all the stations, a total of 37 crustacean species were recorded, of which 6 were isopods, 23 decapods, 7 amphipods and one species of balanomorphs. The results showed noticeable difference between stations regarding the number of individuals, ranging between 374 and 4769. The results indicated that there were no significant differences in benthic crustaceans except EL-Shajara – Regata and EL-Shajara – Tellil, where there were significant differences in the number of species.

Keywords: Crustacea, intertidal zone, Libya, abundance, diversity

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