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Biodiversity in intertidal rock pools: Informing engineering criteria for artificial habitat enhancement in the built environment
Firth, L.B.; Schofield, M.; White, F.J.; Skov, M.W.; Hawkins, S.J. (2014). Biodiversity in intertidal rock pools: Informing engineering criteria for artificial habitat enhancement in the built environment. Mar. Environ. Res. 102: 122-130.
In: Marine Environmental Research. Applied Science Publishers: Barking. ISSN 0141-1136; e-ISSN 1879-0291, more
Also appears in:
Kennedy, R.; Allcock, L.; Firth, L.; Power, A.M. (Ed.) (2014). Managing Biodiversity in a Changing Ocean. Proceedings of the 48th European Marine Biology Symposium (EMBS), Galway, Ireland, 19-23 August 2013. Marine Environmental Research, 102(Special Issue). Elsevier: Amsterdam. 130 pp., more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 

Author keywords
    Biodiversity; Conservation; Rock pool; Incline; Depth; Ecological engineering; Habitat enhancement; Artificial habitat; Environmental heterogeneity; Urbanisation

Authors  Top 
  • Firth, L.B.
  • Schofield, M.
  • White, F.J.
  • Skov, M.W., more
  • Hawkins, S.J.

    Coastal defence structures are proliferating to counter rising and stormier seas. With increasing concern about the ecological value of built environments, efforts are being made to create novel habitat to increase biodiversity. Rock pools are infrequent on artificial structures. We compared biodiversity patterns between rock pools and emergent rock and assessed the role of pool depth and substratum incline in determining patterns of biodiversity. Rock pools were more taxon rich than emergent substrata. Patterns varied with depth and incline with algal groups being more positively associated with shallow than deeper habitats. Substratum incline had little influence on colonising epibiota, with the exception of canopy algae in deeper habitats where vertical surfaces supported greater taxon richness than horizontal surfaces. The creation of artificial rock pools in built environments will have a positive effect on biodiversity. Building pools of varying depths and inclines and shore heights will provide a range of habitats, increase environmental heterogeneity, therefore creating more possible ecological niches, promoting local biodiversity.

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