Effects of structural factors on upwelling fouling community, Southeast Brazil


  • Bruno Pereira Masi Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro
  • Ilana Zalmon Universidade Estadual do Norte Fluminense Darcy Ribeiro
  • Ricardo Coutinho Instituto de Estudos do Mar Almirante Paulo Moreira




Biofouling, Successional processes, Multi-experimental design, Predation


To assess the successional pattern of fouling organisms three hypotheses were tested: 1) a thermocline is caused by seasonal upwelling events, and therefore, depth influences the successional trajectory of the fouling community; 2) a reduction in the intensity of natural light of the substrate influences the fouling composition and the successional trajectory; 3) fish predation influences the community composition and its successional trajectory. During one year, up-facing and down-facing PVC panels on open, partially caged or fully caged, and placed at depths of 1.5 and 3.5 meters were monthly sampled by digital photograph to determine the community composition and by contact point to estimate the percent coverage of organisms. The upwelling impact provided different water masses, and light intensity was also a determining factor of the overall successional trajectory of the fouling community. After the installation of full and partial cages, differences were identified in the respective successional trajectories. The results of this study suggest that each physical factor or biological process can change the successional trajectory of the community, and the successional model (e.g., convergent, divergent, parallel, or cyclic) depends on the magnitudes of the determinants that act on the community at each stage of its trajectory.


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How to Cite

Masi, B. P., Zalmon, I., & Coutinho, R. (2016). Effects of structural factors on upwelling fouling community, Southeast Brazil. Brazilian Journal of Oceanography, 64(4), 387-400. https://doi.org/10.1590/s1679-87592016128706404



Original Article