The polychaetes (Annelida, Polychaeta ) of Greece: Checκlist, distribution, and ecological characteristics


2001 | 111 pages




Monograph deals with the class of the Polychaetous Annelids (Annelida, Polychaeta) in the Greek seas (Greece, Eastern Mediterranean) providing a checklist of the polychaete species recorded in the area and focusing on their distribution and ecology. An introductory chapter outlines the basic external morphological characters of this group, the polychaete life habits and their significance in benthic ecosystems including also a short review of the history of polychaete research in the Mediterranean and a brief biogeographical analysis of the Greek polychaete fauna. Poiychaetes are the most frequent and abundant marine imetazoans in benthic ecosystems with soft sediments. In undisturbed benthic ecosystems studied around Greece, poiychaetes have been found to account for 50-83% in terms of specimens and 40-67% in terms of species. In disturbed to polluted areas poiychaetes increase at the expense of other benthic groups and may totally monopolise the fauna. The first documents available on benthic Polychaeta recorded from Greece date back to 1891. Since then a great ammount of research has been carried out, some of thenn focusing on Polychaete taxonomy. A

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