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      Effect of Salinity on the Zooplankton Community in the Pearl River Estuary

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          Understanding the relationship between the zooplankton distribution and salinity may provide key information to understand ecosystem function under the condition of a global mean sea level rise caused by global climate change. However, little is known about how increasing salinity level will affect the entire zooplankton community on a large scale. Here we completed 1 year of field investigations on the Pearl River Estuary and analyzed the distribution and structure of the zooplankton community. A total of 68 zooplankton species were identified during the survey. The number and diversity (richness, evenness, Shannon index, and Simpson’s index) of the zooplankton species decreased as salinity increased from 0.10 to 21.26. Salinity negatively affected the abundances of rotifers, cladocerans, and total zooplankton, while it had little effect on copepod abundance. Some salt-tolerant species, such as Keratella tropica, Polyarthra vulgaris, and Paracalanus crassirostris, survived at high-salinity sites. A pattern was observed at all sites: the peak in copepod abundance always occurred when rotifers were abundant (sites S1 and S2) or after rotifer abundance reached a maximum level (sites S3, S4, and S5). In general, salinity was the most important environmental factor shaping zooplankton biodiversity and abundance. This study provides insight into potential biodiversity and structure of the zooplankton community in response to salinity change.

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          Author and article information

          Journal of Ocean University of China
          Science Press and Springer (China )
          15 November 2020
          01 December 2020
          : 19
          : 6
          : 1389-1398
          1Key Laboratory of Eutrophication and Red Tide Control, Institute of Hydrobiology, Jinan University, Guangzhou 510632, China
          2Center for Microalgal Biotechnology and Biofuels, Institute of Hydrobiology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Wuhan 430072, China
          3Southern Marine Science and Engineering Guangdong Laboratory (Zhuhai), Zhuhai 519000, China
          Author notes
          *Corresponding authors: WANG Qing, E-mail: wq2010@ ; YANG Yufeng, E-mail: tyyf@
          Copyright © Ocean University of China, Science Press and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2020.

          The copyright to this article, including any graphic elements therein (e.g. illustrations, charts, moving images), is hereby assigned for good and valuable consideration to the editorial office of Journal of Ocean University of China, Science Press and Springer effective if and when the article is accepted for publication and to the extent assignable if assignability is restricted for by applicable law or regulations (e.g. for U.S. government or crown employees).

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