Distribution Trends of Foraminiferal Assemblages in Paralic Environments

A Base for Using Foraminifera as Bioindicators
  • Jean-Pierre Debenay
  • Jean-Jacques Guillou
  • Fabrice Redois
  • Emmanuelle Geslin
Part of the Topics in Geobiology book series (TGBI, volume 15)


Increasing pollution by industrial, agricultural, and other anthropogenic chemicals makes it ever more necessary to develop a thorough water management system. Chemical analyses are often used, but they are expensive and can measure only a fraction of the contaminants present at a given time. Such analyses may also require continuous monitoring in rapidly changing environments such as estuaries and coastal lagoons (paralic environments). Moreover, they reveal nothing about the adverse effects of contaminants that are readily taken up into the tissues of resident organisms (Walker and Livingstone, 1992) and that induce biological responses at all levels of biological organization, from the molecular to the ecosystem level (Cairns and McCormick, 1992). Therefore, the need to assess the impact of pollution leads to the study and development of biomarkers and bioindicators that detect the presence of both known and unknown contaminants (McCarty and Shugart, 1990; see also in this volume Geslin et al., Ch. 9; Bresler and Hombach, Ch. 10).


Salt Marsh Coastal Lagoon Benthic Foraminifera Freshwater Input Foraminiferal Assemblage 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Albani, A., Favero, V. M. and Barbero, R. S., 1991, The distribution and ecological significance of Recent foraminifera in the lagoon south of Venice (Italy), Rev. Españ. Micropaleontol. 23(2):29–45.Google Scholar
  2. Alve, E., 1991, Benthic foraminifera in sediment cores reflecting heavy metal pollution in Sorfjord, Western Norway, J. Foram. Res. 21:1–19.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Alve, E., 1995, Benthic foraminifera response to estuarine pollution: A review, J. Foram. Res. 25:190–203.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Alve, E., and Murray, J. W., 1994, Ecology and taphonomy of benthic foraminifera in temperate mesotidal inlet, J. Foram. Res. 24:18–27.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bamber, R. N., Batten, S. D., Sheader, M., and Bridgwater, N. D., 1992, On the ecology of brackish water lagoons in Great Britain, Aquat. Conserv. 2:65–94.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bandy, O. L., Ingle, J. C., and Resig, J. M., 1964, Foraminifera:Los Angeles County outfall area, California, Limnol. Oceanogr. 9:124–137.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bandy, O. L., Ingle, J. C., and Resig, J. M., 1965, Modifications of foraminiferal distributions by the Orange County outfall, California, Mar. Technol. Soc, Trans. 1965:54–76.Google Scholar
  8. Barnes, R. S. K., 1989, The coastal lagoons of Britain: An overview and conservation appraisal, Biol. Conserv. 49:295–313.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Barnes, R. S. K., 1994, A critical appraisal of the application of Guélorget and Perthuisot’s concepts of the paralic ecosystem and confinement to macrotidal Europe, Est. Coast. Shelf Sci. 38:41–48.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Blandin, P., 1986, Bioindicateurs et diagnostic des systèmes écologiques, Bull. d’Ecol. 17:215–307.Google Scholar
  11. Bolstovskoy, E., and Wright, R., 1976, Recent Foraminifera, W. Junk, The Hague.Google Scholar
  12. Bui Thi Luan, Debenay, J.-P., and Pagès, J., 1994, Holocene foraminifera in the Camau Peninsula (Southern Viet Nam), Hydrobiol Trop. 27:23–31.Google Scholar
  13. Cairns, J. Jr, and McCormick, P. V., 1992, Developing an ecosystem based capability for ecological risk assessments, Environ. Prof. 14:186–196.Google Scholar
  14. Caquet, T., and Lagadic, L., 1998, Consequences d’atteintes individuelles précoces sur la dynamique des populations et de la structuration des communautés et des écosystèmes, in: Utilisation des biomarqueurs pour la surveillance de la qualité de l’environnement (L. Lagadic, T. Caquet, J.-E. Amiard, and F. Ramade, eds.) Lavoisier Tec Doc, Paris, pp. 265–298.Google Scholar
  15. Cazamajor, M.N. de, and Debenay, J.-P., 1995, Les foraminifères, bio-indicateurs des environnements paraliques: réaction à divers types de pollution dans l’estuaire de l’Adour, in: Biological Markers of Pollution.ANPP, Annales Volume, Chinon-France (September 1995), pp. 371–378.Google Scholar
  16. Colleuil, B., 1984, Un modèle d’environnement lagunaire soumis aux conditions du climat équatorial tempéré: le lac Nokoué (République populaire du Bénin), Thesis, University of Bordeaux, France, p. 135.Google Scholar
  17. Debenay, J.-P., 1990, Recent foraminiferal assemblages and their distribution related to environmental stress in the paralic environments of West Africa (Cape Timiris to Ebrie Lagoon), J. Foram. Res. 20:267–282.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Debenay, J.-P., and Pagès, J., 1987, Les peuplements de Foraminifères et de Thécamoebiens de l’estuaire hyperhalin du fleuve Casamance (Sénégal). Leur évolution de février 1984 à novembre 1985, Rev.Hydrobiol. trop. 20:231–254.Google Scholar
  19. Debenay, J.-P., and Moguedet, G., 1990, Les lagunes côtières et l’estuaire de la Songolo, au Congo et l’estuaire du fleuve Congo-Zaire: présentation et description des peuplements de foraminifères benthiques, Rev. Paléobiol. 9:15–26.Google Scholar
  20. Debenay, J.-P., Ba, M., Ly, A., and Sy, L, 1987a, Les écosystèmes paraliques du Sénégal. Description, répartition des peuplements de Foraminifères benthiques, Rev. Paléobiol. 6:229–255.Google Scholar
  21. Debenay, J.-P., Arfi, R., and Konate, S., 1987b, Foraminifères récents des milieux paraliques des côtes d’Afrique de l’Ouest, Géol. Méditer. 14:5–13.Google Scholar
  22. Debenay, J.-P., Colleuil, B., and Texier, H., 1993a, Peuplements de foraminifères du lac Nokoué (Bénin) avant fermeture de la lagune. Comparaison avec d’autres environnements paraliques d’Afrique de l’Ouest, Rev. Micropaléont. 36:225–234.Google Scholar
  23. Debenay, J.-P., Perthuisot, J.-P., and Colleuil, B., 19935, Expression numérique du confinement par les peuplements de foraminifères. Applications aux domaines paraliques d’Afrique de l’Ouest, C. R. Acad. Sci. (Paris), t. 316, série II 12:1823–1830.Google Scholar
  24. Debenay, J.-P., Pagès, J., and Guillou, J.-J., 1994, Transformation of a subtropical river into a hyperhaline estuary: The Casamance River (Sénégal). Paleogeographical implications, Paleoecol. Paleoclim. Paleogeogr. 107:103–119.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Debenay, J.-P., Eichler, B. Beck, Bonetti, C, and Coelho, C, 1996, Foraminifers, biomarkers in the mangrove swamps of Bertioga (São Paulo, Brasil), in: 3° reunião especial da SBPC Ecosystema costeiros: do conhocimento a gestão.Anais, Florianopolis, SC, Brasil (May 1996): 448–449.Google Scholar
  26. Debenay, J.-P., Eichler, B. Beck, Guillou, J.-J., Eichler-Coelho, P., Coelho, C, and Porto-Filho, E., 1997, Comportement des peuplements de foraminifères et comparaison avec l’avifaune dans une lagune fortement stratifieé: la Lagoa da conceição (S.C., Brésil), Rev. Paléobiol. 16:55–75.Google Scholar
  27. Debenay, J.-P., Eichler, B. Beck, Duleba, W., Bonetti, C, and Eichler-Coelho, P., 1998, Stratification in coastal lagoons: Its influence on foraminiferal assemblages in two Brazilian lagoons, Mar. Micropaleontol. 35:65–89.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. De Rijk, S., 1995, Salinity control on the distribution of salt marsh foraminifera (Great Marshes, Massachussetts), J. Foram. Res. 25:156–166.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Durand, J.-R., and Guiral, D., 1994, Hydroclimat et hydrochimie, in: Environnements et ressources aquatiques en Côte d’Ivoire, II milieux lagunaires (J.-R. Durand, P. Dufour, D. Guiral, and S. G. F. Zabi, eds.) pp. 59–90, ORSTOM Éditions, Paris.Google Scholar
  30. Eichler, B. Beck, Debenay, J.-P., Bonetti, C, and Duleba, W., 1995, Répartition des foraminifères benthiques dans la zone Sud-Ouest du système laguno-estuarien d’Iguape-Cananeia (Brésil), Boll. Inst. Oceanográf. USP, São Paulo 43:1–17.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Favry, A., Guélorget, O, Debenay, J.-P., and Perthuisot, J.-P., 1998, Distribution des peuplements de foraminifères actuels dans une lagune mediterranéenne, l’Étang du Prévost, Vie et Milieu Banyuls-sur-mer 48:41–53.Google Scholar
  32. Guélorget, O., Lefebvre, A., Martin, J. L., Favry, A., Debenay, J.-P, Vo Duy, S., Supangat, A., Nguyen Tac, A., and Perthuisot, J.-P., 1997. Organisation hydrologique et biologique de la région estuarienne de Can Gio, Delta du Mekong, Vietnam, in: Proc. Symp. Franco-Vietnamien sur l’aquaculture en Zone Tropicale, Na Trang (December 1995), pp. 55–85.Google Scholar
  33. Hayward, B. W., and Hollis, C. J., 1994, Brackish foraminifera in New Zealand: A taxonomic and ecologie review. Micropaleontology 40:185–222.Google Scholar
  34. Jennings, A. E., and Nelson, A. R., 1992, Foraminiferal assemblage zones in Oregon tidal marshes: Relation to marsh floral zones and sea level, J. Foram. Res. 22:13–29.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Kjerfve, B., 1986, Comparative oceanography of coastal lagoons, in: Estuarine Variability (D. A. Wolfe, ed.), Academic Press, New York, pp. 63–81.Google Scholar
  36. Kramer, K. J. M., and Botterweg, J., 1991, Aquatic biological early warning system: An overview, in: Bioindicators and Environmental Management (D. W. Jeffrey and B. Mudden, eds.), Academic Press, London, pp. 95–126.Google Scholar
  37. Levy, A., 1970, Contribution à l’étude des milieux margino-littoraux: influence des facteurs hydrologiques et sédimentologiques sur les peuplements microfaunistiques (foraminifères). Golfe du Lion. Thèse doctorat d’état Sciences, Paris. 2 vols., p. 396.Google Scholar
  38. Loeblich, A. R. Jr., and Tappan, H., 1988, Foraminiferal Genera and Their Classification, 2 vols. Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York.Google Scholar
  39. Matera, N. J., and Lee, J. J., 1972, Environmental factors affecting the standing crop of foraminifera in sublittoral and psammolittoral communities of a Long Island salt marsh, Mar. Biol. 14:89–103.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. McCarty, J. F., and Shugart, L. R. (eds.), 1990, Biomarkers of Environmental Contamination, Lewis, Boca Raton.Google Scholar
  41. Miyao, S. Y. Nshihara, L., and Sarti, C. C, 1986, Caractersticas Físicas e químicas do sistema estuarino-lagunar de Cananéia-Iguape, Boll. Inst. Oceanográf USP, São Paulo 34:23–36.Google Scholar
  42. Murray, J. W., 1968, Living foraminifers of lagoons and estuaries, Micropaleontology 14:435–455.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Murray, J. W., 1971, Living foraminiferids of tidal marshes: A review, J. Foram. Res. 1:153–161.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Murray, J. W., 1973, Distribution and Ecology of Living Benthic Foraminiferids, Heinemann, London.Google Scholar
  45. Murray, J. W., 1984, Benthic foraminifera: Some relationships between ecological observations and paleoecological interpretations, in: Benthos 83, 2nd Int. Symp. Benthic Foraminifera (H. Oertli, ed.), April 1983, pp. 465–469.Google Scholar
  46. Murray, J. W., 1986, Living and dead Holocene foraminifera of Lyme Bay, southern England, J. Foram. Res. 16:347–352.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Murray, J. W., 1991, Ecology and Palaeoecology of Benthic Foraminifera, Longman, Harlow.Google Scholar
  48. Nichols, M. M., 1974, Foraminifera in estuarine classification, in: Coastal Ecological Systems of the United States (H. T. Odum, B. J. Copeland, and E. A. McMahon, eds.) Conservation Foundation, Washington, D.C., pp. 85–103.Google Scholar
  49. Ozarko, D. L., Patterson, R. T., and Williams, H. F. L., 1997, Marsh foraminifera from Nanaimo British Columbia (Canada): Implications of infaunal habitat and taphonomic biasing, J. Foram. Res. 27:51–68.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Pagès J., and Debenay J.-P., 1987, Evolution saisonnière de la salinité de la Casamance (Sénégal). Description et essai de modélisation, Rev. Hydrobiol. Trop. 20:203–217.Google Scholar
  51. Patterson, R. T., 1990, Intertidal benthic foraminiferal biofacies on the Fraser River Delta, British Columbia: Modem distribution and paleoecological importance, Micropaleontology 36:229–244.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Petrucci, F., Medioli, F. S., Scott, D. B., Pianetti, F. A., and Cavazzini, R., 1983, Evaluation of the usefulness of foraminifera as sea level indicators in the Venise lagoon (N. Italy), Acta Nat. Anteneo Parm. 19:63–77.Google Scholar
  53. Phleger, F. B., and Lankford, R. R., 1957, Seasonal occurrences of living benthonic foraminifera in some Texas Bays, Contr. Cushman Found. Foram. Res. 8:93–105.Google Scholar
  54. Redois, F., 1996, Les Foraminifères benthiques actuels, bioindicateurs du milieu marin. Exemples du plateau continental sénégalais et de l’estran du golfe du Morbihan (France). PhD Thesis, University of Angers, France, 2 vol, p. 401.Google Scholar
  55. Redois, F., and Debenay, J.-P., 1996, Influence du confinement sur la répartition des foraminifères benthiques. Exemple de l’estran d’une ria mésotidale de Bretagne méridionale, Rev. Paléobiol. (Genève) 15:243–260.Google Scholar
  56. Schafer, C. T., 1973, Distribution of foraminifera near pollution sources in Chaleur Bay, Water Air Soil Pollut. 2:219–233.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Scott, D. B., 1976, Brackish-water foraminifera from southern California and description of Polysaccammina ipohalina n. gen., nsp, J. Foram. Res. 6:312–321.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Scott, D. B., and Medioli, F. S., 1978, Vertical zonations of marsh foraminifera as accurate indicators of former sea levels, Nature 272:528–531.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Scott, D. B., and Medioli, F. S., 1980, Quantitative studies of marsh foraminiferal distributions in Nova Scotia: Implications for sea level studies, Cushman Found. Foram. Res. Spec. Publ. 17:58 pp.Google Scholar
  60. Scott, D. B., Piper, D. J. W., and Panagos, A. C., 1979, Recent salt marsh and intertidal mudflat foraminifera from the western coast of Greece, Riv. Ital. Paleontol. 85:243–266.Google Scholar
  61. Scott, D. B., Schafer, C. T., and Medioli, F. S., 1980, Eastern Canadian estuarine foraminifera: a framework for comparison, J. Foram. Res. 10:205–234.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. Scott, D. B., Williamson, M. A., and Duffett, T. E., 1981, Marsh foraminifera of Prince Edward Island: Their recent distribution and application for former sea level studies, Marit. Sed. Atlan. Geology 17:98–129.Google Scholar
  63. Shear, H., 1996, The development and use of indicators to assess the state of ecosystem health in Great Lakes, Ecosys. Health 2:241–258.Google Scholar
  64. Tastet, J.-P., 1974, L’environnement physique du système lagunaire Ébrié, Univ. Abidjan, Ser. Doc. Dep. Sc. de la Terre 11:1–28.Google Scholar
  65. Uschakov, P. V., 1970, Observation sur la faune benthique du littoral guinéen, Cah. Biol. Mar. 11:435–457.Google Scholar
  66. Walker, C. H., and Livingstone, D. R. (eds.), 1992, Persistent Pollutants in Marine Ecosystems, SETAC Spec. Publ., Pergamon Press, Oxford, 272 pp.Google Scholar
  67. Wang, P., 1992, Distribution of foraminifera in estuarine deposits: A comparison between Asia, Europe and Australia, in: Centenary of Japanese Micropaleontology (K. Ishizaki and T. Saito, eds.), Terra Scientific Publishing Co, Tokyo, pp. 71–83.Google Scholar
  68. Watkins, J. G., 1961, Foraminiferal ecology around the Orange County, California, ocean sewer outfall, Micropaleontology 7:199–206.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. Wilson, R. C. H., Harding, L. E., and Hirvonen, H., 1995, Marine ecosystem monitoring network design, Ecosys. Health 1:222–227.Google Scholar
  70. Yanko, V., Kronfeld, A., and Flexer, A., 1994, The response of benthic foraminifera to various pollution sources: implications for pollution monitoring, J. Foram. Res. 24:1–17.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Yanko, V., Arnold, A., and Parker, W., 1999. The effect of marine pollution on benthic foraminifera, in: Modern Foraminifera (Barun Sent Gupta, ed.), Kluwer Academic Publishers, London, pp. 217–235.Google Scholar
  72. Yassini, I., and Jones, B., 1989, Estuarine foraminiferal communities in Lake Illawarra, New South Wales, Proc. Linn. Soc. N.S.W. 110:229–266.Google Scholar
  73. Yassini, I., and Jones, B., 1995, Foraminiferida and Ostracoda from Estuarine and Shelf Environments on the Southeastern Coast of Australia, University of Wollongong Press, Wollongong, 484 pp.Google Scholar
  74. Yazvenko, S. B., and Rapport, D. J., 1996, A framework for assessing forest ecosystem health, Ecosys. Health 2:40–51.Google Scholar
  75. Zaninetti, L., 1982, Les foraminifères des marais salants de Salins de Giraud (Sud de la France): Milieu de Vie et transport dans le salin, comparaison avec les microfaunes marines, Géol. Méditerr. 9:447–470.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jean-Pierre Debenay
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jean-Jacques Guillou
    • 3
  • Fabrice Redois
    • 1
    • 2
  • Emmanuelle Geslin
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Laboratoire de Géologie, Equipe EA 2644Faculté des Sciences, Université d’AngersAngers CedexFrance
  2. 2.Laboratoire d’Étude des Bio-Indicateurs Marins (LÉBIM)Ker Chalon, Ile d’YeuFrance
  3. 3.Laboratoire de Géologie, Faculté des SciencesUniversité de NantesNantes Cedex 3France

Personalised recommendations