Eelgrass (Zostera marina) and Seaweed Abundance along the Coast of Togiak National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska, 2008–10
We conducted a point-sampling survey to determine eelgrass (Zostera marina) and seaweed abundance in coastal waters adjacent to Togiak National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska, in July 2008–10. Eelgrass was known to be abundant in protected embayments of the southeastern Bering Sea and near the Togiak National Wildlife Refuge, but prior to this study, no systematic ground surveys had been conducted in these areas. We determined mean aboveground biomass of eelgrass to be highly variable among years observed, ranging from 32–72 grams dry weight per square meter (g/m2) during successive years in Nanvak Bay and among the studied embayments in 2010: 47±4 g/m2 in Nanvak Bay, 69±7 g/m2 in Chagvan Bay, and 74±15 g/m2 in Goodnews Bay. Seaweed density, abundance, and frequency scores were also highly variable among years and among embayments and were lower for seaweeds than for eelgrass in Nanvak and Chagvan bays, but not in Goodnews Bay. For all bays, mussels (Mytilus spp.) and gastropods were the most common macro-invertebrates detected during surveys, whereas sea stars, crabs, and sponges were not observed in the embayments.
|Eelgrass (Zostera marina) and Seaweed Abundance along the Coast of Togiak National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska, 2008–10
|David H. Ward, Kyle R. Hogrefe, Michael A. Swaim, Tyronne F. Donnelly, Lucretia L. Fairchild
|USGS Numbered Series
|USGS Publications Warehouse
|Alaska Science Center Biology WTEB