Barry, J. P. Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute, barry@mbari.org
Smith, J. P. Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute,
Whaling, P. Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute,

 
PATTERNS OF BENTHIC MEGAFAUNAL ABUNDANCE IN THE ROSS SEA, ANTARCTICA ESTIMATED USING A TOWED VIDEO SYSTEM
 
The abundance and distribution of benthic megafauna in the southwestern Ross Sea was estimated from video transects using a towed video system. The video system was designed to be towed approximately 2 m above the sea floor and view a 1 m2 area below the tow fish. The system's design allowed it to be used in rocky habitats and its vertical perspective minimized errors in abundance estimates associated with oblique views of the sea floor. Analyses of video transect included measurement of the distance transited and sea floor area observed. Megafauna were identified from video records, supplemented by trawl collections at many stations. Video transects of approximately 300 m long were completed at 27 stations during the 1997-98 field season from depths of 200 to 1300 m in the SW Ross Sea. Deeper transects (>500 m) were usually dominated by deposit feeding holothuroids, while filter-feeding species, including sponges, bryozoans, and holothurians, were most abundant at shallow stations where current speeds were highest.
 
Day: Wednesday, Feb. 3
Time: Poster
Location: Sweeney Center
 
Code: CS69WE1106S