Extreme storm wave influence on sandy beach macrofauna with distinct human pressures

Mar Pollut Bull. 2016 Jun 15;107(1):125-135. doi: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2016.04.009. Epub 2016 Apr 18.


We evaluated the influence of storm waves on the intertidal community structure of urbanized and non-urbanized areas of a sandy beach on the northern coast of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The macrofauna was sampled before (PREV) and after two storm wave events (POEV I; POEV II) in 2013 and 2014. Significant differences in community structure between PREV and POEV I in the urbanized sector demonstrate higher macrofauna vulnerability, and the community recovery within 41days on this scenario of less frequent events in 2013. On the other hand, significant differences in the macrofauna only in the urbanized sector between PREV and POEV II also highlight macrofauna vulnerability and community recovery failure within 42days on this scenario of more frequent storm in 2014. Urbanization and wave height were the variables that most influenced species, indicating that high storm wave events and increasing urbanization synergism are a threat to the macrofauna.

Keywords: Anthropogenic impact; Community structure; Extreme weather events; Macrofauna; Sandy beaches.

MeSH terms

  • Biota*
  • Brazil
  • Ecosystem*
  • Humans
  • Urbanization*