A community structure study of Gammaridean amphipods in a thermally impacted estuary at Anclote Anchorage, Florida

Document Type



Master of Science (MS)


Environmental and Urban Systems

First Advisor's Name

Patsy A. McLaughlin

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

George H. Dalrymple

Third Advisor's Name

Martin Tracey

Fourth Advisor's Name

Jose T. Villate

Date of Defense



The present study concerns the relationships of gammaridean amphipods to their environment in a thermally impacted estaury at Anclote Anchorage, Florida. Thermal effluent was created by a oil-fired power plant. Samples were collected bimonthly from January through December 1976, by bottom "grab" sampler. Physico-chemical measurements were also taken. Amphipod species from each sample were indentified and counted.

Temporal effects on amphipod community structure were detected; amphipod diversity, species richness, and density were slightly greater at effluent stations than control stations during the winter and spring, and were slightly lower during the summer and late fall. Species associations that were related to the thermal effluent were detected during the January and March sampling periods.

Total seagrass biomass was the most useful parameter for predicting large amphipod densities. The seagrass Syringodium filiforme was generally associated with high amphipod richness and diversity. Cymadusa compta was the dominant amphipod at Anclote, followed by Elasmopus levis and Amithoe longimana.



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