Macrobenthos in the central Arabian Gulf: a reflection of climate extremes and variability Academic Article uri icon


  • 2015, Springer International Publishing Switzerland. The arid subtropical ecosystem of the central Arabian Gulf was used to explore the combined effects of low primary productivity, high salinities, and variable temperatures on the composition and structure of benthic macrofauna at 13 sites encircling the Qatar Peninsula in winter and summer (or late spring) of 2010 and 2011. The low abundance, biomass, and remarkably high species turnover may be a reflection of the oligotrophic, thermally variable, hypersaline coastal environment. The number of species and within-habitat diversity was lowest in the highest salinities but increased with finer-grained sediments and lower salinity. A remarkable temporal variation in species composition observed may reflect insufficient primary production to sustain new populations recruited from the seasonal exchange of water from the adjacent Sea of Oman. Low abundances accompanied by continued replacement of species may be a new model for extremely arid conditions associated with global warming.

published proceedings


altmetric score

  • 0.75

author list (cited authors)

  • Wei, C., Rowe, G. T., Al-Ansi, M., Al-Maslamani, I., Soliman, Y., El-Din, N. N., ... Abdel-Moati, M. A.

citation count

  • 12

complete list of authors

  • Wei, Chih-Lin||Rowe, Gilbert T||Al-Ansi, Mohsin||Al-Maslamani, Ibrahim||Soliman, Yousria||El-Din, Nehad Nour||Al-Ansari, Ibrahim S||Al-Shaikh, Ismail||Quigg, Antonietta||Nunnally, Clifton||Abdel-Moati, Mohamed A

publication date

  • May 2016