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SCI. MAR., 68 (Suppl. 3): 7-38

SCIENTIA MARINA

2004

MEDITERRANEAN DEEP-SEA BIOLOGY. F. SARDÀ, G. D’ONGHIA, C.-Y. POLITOU and A. TSELEPIDES (eds.)

An introduction to Mediterranean deep-sea biology*

FRANCISCO SARDÀ1, ANTONI CALAFAT2, Mª MAR FLEXAS3,4, ANASTASIOS TSELEPIDES5, MIQUEL CANALS2, MANUEL ESPINO3 and ANGELO TURSI6

2

5 1 Institut de Ciències del Mar (CSIC). Passeig Marítim de la Barceloneta 37-49, 08039 Barcelona, Spain. E-mail: siscu@icm.csic.es GRC Geociències Marines, Dept. Estratigrafia, Paleontologia i Geociències Marines, Universitat de Barcelona, Martí i Franqués s/n, 08028 Barcelona, Spain. 3 Laboratori d’Enginyeria Marítima, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (LIM/UPC), Campus Nord Mòdul D1, Gran Capità s/n, 08034 Barcelona, Spain. 4 Institut Mediterrani d’Estudis Avançats (IMEDEA-CSIC), Miquel Marquès 21, 07190 Esporles, Mallorca, Spain. Institute of Marine Biology, Hellenic Centre for Marine Research, Gournes Pediados, P.O. Box 2214, 71003 Heraklion, Crete, Greece. 6 Dipartimento di Zoologia, Università di Bari, Via Orabona 4, 70125 Bari, Italy.

SUMMARY: This chapter presents the state of the art concerning the deep-sea Mediterranean environment: geology, hydrology, biology and fisheries. These are the fields of study dealt with in the scientific papers of this volume. The authors are specialists who have addressed their research to the Mediterranean deep-sea environment during the last years. This introduction is an overview but not an exhaustive review.

Key words: Mediterranean, marine environment, geology, hydrology, biology, fisheries.

RESUMEN: INTRODUCCIÓN A LA BIOLOGÍA DEL MEDITERRÁNEO PROFUNDO. – Este capítulo presenta los conocimientos que actualmente se tienen sobre el ambiente del Mediterráneo profundo: hidrología, geología, biología y pesquerías, que cons- tituyen el ambiente sobre el cual se han desarrollado las aportaciones de este volumen. Los autores son especialistas que durante los últimos años han dirigido sus estudios al mar profundo. Esta introducción pretende dar una visión general pero no ser una revisión exhaustiva.

Palabras clave: Mediterráneo, ambiente marino, geología, hidrología, biología, pesquerías.

GENERAL TRENDS IN MORPHOLOGY AND SEDIMENTOLOGY

Introduction

nents conditions its general morphology, and the restricted communication with the open ocean is a major factor affecting the sedimentary dynamics and physical oceanography.

The Mediterranean sea, our ancient Mare Nos- trum, Mare Internum or Mediterraneum (“sea between the lands”), is a relatively small but deep basin that is surrounded by continents (Shepard, 1963). The fact that it is landlocked between conti-

*Received June 9, 2004. Accepted October 20, 2004.

A great synthesis in the knowledge of the mor- phology, sedimentology and general geology of Mediterranean Sea came about with the presentation of synthetic bathymetric charts, as shown by Acosta et al. (2002). Bourcart (1960) made the first collec- tion of bathymetric data in the Mediterranean Sea, for the western basin. Geological knowledge pro- gressed further with the work of Carter et al. (1972)

MEDITERRANEAN DEEP-SEA BIOLOGY 7

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