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Volume 2 (2002), Pages 492-496
Short Communication

Metamorphosis of Benthic Invertebrate Larvae: A Sensitive Indicator for Detection of Changes in Marine Environmental Quality

Key Lab for Science and Engineering of Marine Ecological Environment, First Institute of Oceanography, State Oceanic Administration, Qingdao 266061, China

Received 28 September 2001; Revised 24 November 2001; Accepted 4 January 2002

Copyright © 2002 Xuelei�Zhang.


Many marine coastal ecosystems are threatened by increasing waste discharge, and bioassays are needed because chemical and physical tests alone are not sufficient to assess potential effects on aquatic biota. In light of the fact that larval metamorphosis of benthic invertebrates is usually very sensitive to environmental changes, this paper reviews sensitivity comparisons of larval metamorphosis with other common bioassays in different species and those in different developmental stages of the same species, and it discusses the potential use of larval metamorphosis as an indicator of marine environmental quality.