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Phytoplankton community associated with marine sponge Liosina Paradoxa Thiele, 1899 at Sandspit, Karachi  

Hina Jabeen, Seema Shafique, Zaib-Un-Nisa Burhan, Munawwer Rasheed and Pirzada Jamal Ahmed Siddiqui

The phytoplankton community associated with marine sponges was studied seasonally at Sandspit backwater during January to December 2013. The sponge samples were collected from pneumatophores of Avicennia marina and thoroughly washed with seawater. The samples were retained in 200 ml plastic bottles and 4% formalin was added as a preservative. The phytoplankton communities were sorted from the samples and their members were identified using light microscopy. Twenty species, representing three classes were recorded. Ammong them Bacillariophyceae was observeved with highest diversity (14 species) while four species were belonged to Cyanophyceae and two to Chlorophyceae. The highest number of individuals were also recorded for Bacillariophyceae (157 individuals) which indicated that Pinnularia spp. (20%) was the most dominant genus followed by Surirella ovata (17%) and Nitzschia palea (13%) whereas minimum abundance recorded for Chlorophyceae (6 individuals). Highest numerical abundance was observed in summer and lowest during winter season.  Physicochemical parameters of water recorded were temperature (27-35 ± 4.6°C), salinity (35-39 ± 1.47 PSU), dissolved oxygen (0.11-3.44 ± 1.15mgL-1) and pH (7.04-7.69 ± 0.19). The results indicated that phytoplankton diversity is greatly influenced by environmental factors. This is the first study of the phytoplankton community associated with marine sponges in Pakistan. Further study is needed to determine the communities associated with Liosina paradoxa in mangrove area and other sponge species from different regions to understand the interaction between host-sponge and its inhabitants from coastal waters of Pakistan

To Cite this article: Jabeen, H., S. Shafique, Z.U.N. Burhan, M. Rasheed and P.J.A. Siddiqui. 2021. Phytoplankton community associated with marine sponge Liosina paradoxa Thiele, 1899 at Sandspit, Karachi. Pak. J. Bot., 53(6): DOI:  

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