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International Journal of Ecology and Environmental Sciences 27: 105-110, 2001
International Scientific Publications, New Delhi

Change of Benthic Macro-invertebrate Community in a Salt Marsh of the Changjiang Estuary after a
Short-term Tidal Restriction

X.Z. Yuan and J.J. Lu


Changes in the vegetation, sediment characteristics and the structure of the benthic macro-invertebrate community after one-year tidal restriction were studied in the salt marsh of the Changjiang estuary, China. After diking, the number of benthic macro-invertebrate species decreased in the salt marsh, and the species composition changed. The number of species of Polychaeta and Crustacea decreased, and the proportion of Mollusca in the total community increased. The density and biomass of benthic macro-invertebrates also increased. The decrease in species richness and diversity reflected degradation of the salt marsh habitat. The causative changes in various environmental factors are discussed.

Key Words: Benthos, Macro-invertebrates, molluscs, Tidal restriction, Salt marsh, Changjiang estuary.