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Title: Macrobenthic Community Structure, Secondary Production, and Rates of Bioturbation and Sedimentation at the Kane'ohe Bay Lagoon Floor 
Author: Smith, Craig R; Kukert, Helmut
Date: 1996-04
Publisher: University of Hawaii Press
Citation: Smith CR, Kukert H. 1996. Macrobenthic community structure, secondary production, and rates of bioturbation and sedimentation at the Kane'ohe Bay lagoon floor. Pac Sci 50(2): 211-229.
Abstract: The Kane'ohe Bay lagoon floor is one of the largest shallowwater,
muddy habitats in Hawai'i and is a major repository for sediments and,
possibly, pollutants from the Kane'ohe watershed. Nonetheless, macrobenthic
community structure, secondary production, and particle-mixing rates at the
lagoon floor remain largely unstudied. During 1990-1991, we surveyed macrobenthic
community structure at four stations 12 m deep at the lagoon floor
and evaluated macrobenthic secondary production, as well as particle mixing
and sedimentation, at one representative station. Macrobenthic abundance in
the lagoon during our survey was high (44,000-100,000 individuals m-2
), with
very small deposit-feeding polychaetes dominating the community. This lowdiversity
assemblage was relatively similar throughout the bay and resembled
the communities found in highly depositional environments (e.g., river deltas,
and zones of active erosion and redeposition). Macrobenthic secondary production
at the representative station was low, with a best estimate of 4.9 g m-2
yr- 1 ash-free dry weight (reasonable range 1.2-20 g m-2 yr- 1); this appeared to
be enough production to support <2% of the annual fish yield in Kane'ohe
Bay. Tracer-particle experiments at the representative station, sampled after 7
months and 1 yr, indicated low sediment-mixing rates (diffusive mixing coefficient
~0.9 cm2 yr- 1
), little size dependence in particle mixing, and relatively
high short-term rates of sedimentation (6-7 cm yr- 1
). After corrections for
sediment compaction, these short-term sedimentation rates (2.7-3.7 cm yr- 1
are about three-fold higher than longer-term (decadal) sedimentation rates
(~1.0 cm yr- 1) estimated using Pb-21O geochronology at a nearby site; the
discrepancy may be caused by sediment transport from nearby fringing reefs,
resuspension of bottom sediments by alpheid shrimp, or interannual variability
of sediment flux into the bay. We conclude that the Kane'ohe Bay lagoon harbors
a low-diversity, low-productivity macrobenthic assemblage largely structured
by high gross sedimentation rates. In addition, we conclude that sandsized
particles entering the bay are rapidly (within months) sequestered below
the sediment-water interface, where they remain for at least l-yr time scales.
Pages/Duration: 18 pages
ISSN: 0030-8870

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