February 1st to 5th 2016
Olhão, Portugal
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Iceland, between boreal and arctic waters: Benthic Tunicates (Chordata: Ascidiacea).

Scientific Exhibition
Biodiversity Effects
Thursday, February 4, 2016 -
17:30 to 19:30

Ramos-Esplá, A.A. 1

1Dept. Marine Sciences, University of Alicante, 03080 Alicante, Spain

Sea squirts represent the class of Tunicata whose adult life is benthic and sessile. This characteristic, together with a free larval stage (lecitotrophic), relatively short empowers as an excellent taxon in biogeographical studies The BIOICE cruises (Benthic Invertebrates of Iceland) were carried around the economic exclusive waters of Iceland during 1991-2004 on the continental shelf and slope (20-2000m depth). They have contributed to enlarge the knowledge about ascidian species, horizontal and vertical distribution and the zoogeographical relationships with the neighboring areas (North Atlantic and Arctic). To date, 61 spp. have been identified for Icelandic waters, of which 5 are added after BIOICE campaigns. The geographical and bathymetrical distribution of ascidian species suggest that Iceland can be divided in three sectors: i) South, continental shelf and upper slope (0-600m depth), related with the Atlantic Boreal region; ii) North, continental shelf and upper slope (0-500m depth), related with the Arctic region; iii) Deep, middle and lower slope (> 600m depth).
keywords: 
Benthic tunicata, Ascidiacea, Iceland, Biogeography

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