The deployment of large man-made structures in inshore coastal areas has the potential for causing significant hydrographical and biological changes in the receiving environments. Often the ability to determine changes resulting from significant impacts has been compromised by the lack of pre-deployment data. The Loch Linnhe artificial reef is a 42 000 tonnes reef complex that is proposed for deployment in the period 2001-2004. A series of baseline data sets were generated in the 4 years preceding construction to facilitate multi-parameter post-reef deployment comparisons. Hydrographical data included a detailed assessment of tidal current dynamics over the complete spring-neap tidal cycle. Sedimentological research included broad-scale remote acoustic surveys coupled with sediment granulometric analysis. Seasonal changes in oxygen levels through the sediment column were also determined. The existing biological community at the proposed site was assessed through monthly diver observation and remote sediment grab sampling. These data sets will form the basis of a comprehensive evaluation of reef impacts and performance to be made post-reef construction. (C) 2002 International Council for the Exploration of the Sea. Published by Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.
- BENTHIC COMMUNITIES
- Marine & Freshwater Biology