Galveston Bay Benthic Community Structure As An Indicator of Water-Quality
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The objective of this study was to ascertain water quality through investigation of benthic community structure. Various methods of community structure analysis including several species diversity indices, rarefaction curves and a probability of interspecific encounter index were applied to data collected from selected sites in Galveston Bay, Texas. Hydrographic data and sediment analysis were used in interpreting the results of the various methods of investigating community structure. The different methods of analysis used in this study showed very close agreement. It is suggested that 3 of the 5 investigation sites in Galveston Bay showed normal estuarine water quality. 2 other stations showed evidence of large amounts of stress probably due to water quality. One of the 2 was probably stressed due to natural causes, primarily salinity fluctuations. The other, a channel site near a huge industrial complex, showed intermittent stress possibly due to man-made pollution.