Seasonal and spatial characteristics of the macrobenthic community in the South Yellow Sea were studied based on data from three voyages carried out in spring, summer and autumn, 2012. Twenty six stations were sampled and divided into three regions (west, middle and east region of South Yellow Sea). A total of 218 species were obtained with Polychaeta and Crustacea being the predominant groups. Mean abundance varied from 151.4 ind. m−2 in spring to 188 ind. m−2 in autumn showing an increasing trend with season, and mean biomass ranged from 12.1 g m−2 in spring to 33.4 g m−2 in summer. Mean secondary productivity varied from 0.21 g (AFDW)/(m2·month) in spring to 0.48 g (AFDW)/(m2·month) in summer. Biomass was significantly different among seasons, and number of species, secondary productivity and Shannon-Weiner index had significant differences among regions. Abundance, Pielou's evenness index and average taxonomic distinctness were not significantly different among seasons nor regions. Overall significant differences of community structure among both seasons and regions were detected. Depth and the distance from shore were important factors influencing the distribution of macrobenthos in South Yellow Sea.

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