Articles | Volume 17, issue 9
Biogeosciences, 17, 2657–2680, 2020

Special issue: Assessing environmental impacts of deep-sea mining...

Biogeosciences, 17, 2657–2680, 2020

Research article 15 May 2020

Research article | 15 May 2020

Are seamounts refuge areas for fauna from polymetallic nodule fields?

Daphne Cuvelier et al.

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Cited articles

Amon, D. J., Ziegler, A. F., Dahlgren, T. G., Glover, A. G., Goineau, A., Gooday, A. J., Wiklund, H., and Smith, C. R.: Insights into the abundance and diversity of abyssal megafauna in a polymetallic-nodule region in the eastern Clarion-Clipperton Zone, Sci. Rep.-UK, 6, 30492,, 2016. 
Baco, A. R.: Exploration for deep-sea corals on North Pacific seamounts and islands, Oceanography, 20, 109–117, 2007. 
Beaulieu, S. E.: Colonization of habitat islands in the deep sea: Recruitment to glass sponge stalks, Deep-Sea Res. Pt. I, 48, 1121–1137,, 2001. 
Bluhm, H.: Re-establishment of an abyssal megabenthic community after experimental physical disturbance of the seafloor, Deep-Sea Res. Pt. II, 48, 3841–3868,, 2001. 
Bluhm, H. and Gebruk, A. V.: Holothuroidea (Echinodermata) of the Peru basin – ecological and taxonomic remarks based on underwater images, Mar. Ecol., 20, 167–195,, 1999. 
Short summary
Polymetallic nodule mining will remove hard substrata from the abyssal deep-sea floor. The only neighbouring ecosystems featuring hard substratum are seamounts, and their inhabiting fauna could aid in recovery post-mining. Nevertheless, first observations of seamount megafauna were very different from nodule-associated megafauna and showed little overlap. The possible uniqueness of these ecosystems implies that they should be included in management plans for the conservation of biodiversity.
Final-revised paper