School of Earth, Environmental, and Marine Sciences Faculty Publications and Presentations

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Shallow coastal wetlands within the territory of an industrial port in southern Tamaulipas, Mexico, were monitored seasonally over a lustrum, focusing on their fishes assemblage and water parameters. The purpose was to characterize these ecosystems that are affected by different disturbances of industrial origin, document changes, and assess potentially degrading terms as the affectations prevailed over the period of study. The wetlands are differentially affected by impacting land uses in their immediate surroundings, by crude oil leaks, and/or by diverse industrial wastewater discharges. Water parameters varied only slightly over time for most sites, and relative disparities among sites remained. The fishes assemblage was dominated by a native planktivorous species in eutrophic sites and by a native omnivorous fish in the oligotrophic wetland. The sole exotic species found was only the second-most dominant in all sites. The structure of the fish assemblage was maintained over time. Such stability is attributed to moderate temporal variation of water parameters; limited fish migration due to relative confinement of water bodies; and a reduced pool of species with dominant fishes potentially exhibiting trophic plasticity. These degraded aquatic ecosystems support a simplified but relatively stable fishes assemblage and may have reached an alternate steady state that could facilitate environmental management by the port authority.


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Regional Studies in Marine Science



Available for download on Friday, November 01, 2024