Zoobenthos and Zooplankton of the Northern Aral Sea and Possible Ways of the Sea Ecosystem Rehabilitation
Prior to anthropogenic desiccation, the average salinities in the Large and Small Seas differed to some extent. These differences were insignificant during the period from 1961 to 1970 because of sufficient water exchange between the two basins. From 1971 to 1985 after the Auzykokaral strait dried up, and Berg’s strait became shallower, the average salinity in the Small Sea rose 1.5–3.0 g/1 higher than in the Large Sea. However, in 1986 the difference in average salinity between the Small and Large Seas decreased again, primarily because of a change in the direction of flow of the Syrdarya River, which resulted in the diversion of more freshwater into the Small Sea. Since 1988, the average salinity in the Small Sea has decreased by 1.5–2.0 g/1 when compared with the Large Sea. Subsequently, the complete drying of Berg’s strait in spring 1990 has resulted in still sharper differences in salinity concentration between two basins (Table 1).
KeywordsWater Area Bivalve Mollusk Benthic Assemblage Inshore Zone Abra Ovata
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