Study area description
Eastern Mediterranean, two sites in northern Crete (Alykes, Elounda), rocky substrate with algal cover, sampling depths 1m 5m, 10m, 15m, 20m; one site in Haifa Bay, Israel, soft substrate, sampling depth 7–13m.
Specimens from Israel were collected on 31.5.2009 and 11.10.2009 in Haifa Bay, (Israel, Eastern Mediterranean Sea) from soft sediments of mixed grain sizes in shallow waters. Sediment samples were taken with a Van-Veen grab (KAHLSICO, model WA265/SS214) 32x35cm, volume 20 l, penetration 20 cm. The sediment was preserved in buffered formalin 10% for 3–7 days, then sieved through a 250 µm mesh sieve and subsequently stored in 70% ethanol. Specimens from Crete were collected in September 2007 and June 2008 from two sites in northern Crete characterized by a continuous hard bottom habitat with dense algal coverage and a moderate wave exposure. At each site, two vertical transects with sampling depths at 1 m, 5 m, 10 m, 15 m and 20 m were defined and five replicates were taken from each transect and depth.Samples were collected by means of SCUBA diving according to the NaGISA protocol (Iken and Konar 2003). A plexiglas frame (25 x 25 cm) with a net of 0.5 mm mesh size attached to its top opening was placed onto the rock and the surface within the frame was scraped off. The sample was collected by a manually operated suction device, supplied by air from an extra scuba tank. Large particles (>2 cm) were collected manually after suction. The samples were subsequently washed through a 0.5 mm mesh sieve, fixed and preserved in 99% ethanol.
This is a combined dataset originating from two projects: NaGISA (Natural Geography in Shore Areas) and a study on the Benthos of Haifa Bay