Numerical Abundance And Species Diversity Of Surface Zooplankton In The Coastal Waters Of United Arab Emirates On The Arabian Gulf A Preliminary Study
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Surface zooplankton of the coastal waters of the United Arab Emirates was studied bimonthly during the period September 1997 to July 1998. Species diversity, numerical abundance and seasonal dynamics were analyzed , at six sites, in the coastal waters of five Emirates including Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Umm Al Quwain and Ras Al Khaimah. A total of 70 taxa and species were identified. At all sites, copepods were predominant in the standing crop with an average of 1945 ind. m'3 and formed ~ 65.5%, numerically, of the total zooplankton community. The meroplanktonic larvae occupied the second rank and constituted -19.7 % of the total zooplankton. Seasonally, the main peak of zooplankton abundance was recorded in winter (January) with an average of 3510 ind. m'3, while September was characterized by the lowest density (1906 ind. m'3). Relatively higher diversity values were recorded at Ras Al-Khaimah and a progressive decline in diversity was observed southward.