Respiration in coastal benthic communities

Jack J. Middelburg*, Carlos M. Duarte, Jean Pierre Gattuso

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

6 Scopus citations


This chapter reviews coastal benthic communities with the aim of deriving a global estimate for respiration in these ecosystems. Reefs, mangroves, salt marshes, macroalgae, sea grasses, and unvegetated sediments dominate respiration in the coastal ocean. Estimates of coastal benthic respiration are not well constrained but converge on about 620 Tmol C/a. In coastal benthic ecosystems, autotrophs and multicellular heterotrophs contribute significantly to, and in some systems even dominate respiration unlike in most other oceanic ecosystems in which bacteria dominate respiration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationRespiration in Aquatic Ecosystems
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9780191713347
ISBN (Print)9780198527084
StatePublished - Sep 1 2007
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Oxford University Press 2005. All rights reserved.


  • Benthic ecosystems
  • Macroalgae
  • Mangroves
  • Reefs
  • Respiration rate
  • Salt marshes
  • Sea grasses
  • Sediments

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences


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