Biodiversity & Conservation

, 15:3685 | Cite as

Faunal change and bathymetric diversity gradient in deep-sea prosobranchs from Northeastern Atlantic

  • Celia OlabarriaEmail author


Despite the plethora of studies, geographic patterns of diversity in deep sea remain subject of speculation. This study considers a large dataset to examine the faunal change and depth-diversity gradient of prosobranch molluscs in the Porcupine Seabight and adjacent Abyssal Plain (NE Atlantic). Rates of species succession (addition and loss) increased rapidly with increasing depth and indicated four possible areas of faunal turnover at about 700, 1600, 2800 and 4100 m. Depth was a significant predictor of diversity, explaining nearly a quarter the variance. There was a pattern of decreasing diversity downslope from ~250 m to ~1500–1600 m, followed by an increase to high values at about 4000 m and then again, a fall to ~4915 m. Processes causing diversity patterns of prosobranchs in the Porcupine Seabight and adjacent Abyssal Plain are likely to differ in magnitude or type, from those operating in other Atlantic areas.


Deep sea Diversity Faunal turnover Northeastern Atlantic Porcupine Abyssal Plain Porcupine Seabight Prosobranchs 


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Copyright information

© Springer 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Southampton Oceanography CentreDEEPSEAS Benthic Biology GroupEmpress DockUnited Kingdom
  2. 2.Departamento de Ecoloxía e Bioloxía Animal, Area EcoloxíaUniversidad de VigoVigo (Pontevedra)Spain

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