Plum Island Ecosystems LTER Database

Acceptance and utilization of LTER data requires that:

(1) The Principal Investigator be sent a notice stating reasons for acquiring any data and a description of the publication intentions.
(2) The Principal Investigator of the data set be sent a copy of the report or manuscript prior to submission and be adequately cited in any resultant publications.
(3) A copy of any resultant publications should be sent to:

Principal Investigator
Ecosystems Center
Marine Biological Laboratory
7 MBL St.
Woods Hole, MA 02543

Dataset URLs:METADATA: HTML, Rich Text, XML(EML compliant)
DATA: Comma Delimited, Excel file with Metadata and data
Dataset ID:LTE-TIDE-NektonFlumeDensity.04
Dataset Title:Nekton species counts and density from flume net collections along Rowley River tidal creeks associated with long term fertilization experiments, Rowley, MA.
Investigator 1: 
First Name:Linda
Last Name:Deegan
Address line 1:The Ecosystems Center
Address line 2:Marine Biological Laboratory
Address line 3:7 MBL St.
City:Woods Hole
Zip Code:02543
Associate Investigators:James Nelson, David Johnson, Mike Johnson, David Behringer
Keywords:PIE LTER, TIDE, population dynamics, salt marsh, flume nets, fish, nekton, shrimp
Abstract:The flume nets were deployed with the purpose of capturing salt marsh nekton. Nekton species were identified to the lowest taxonomic level using species keys. The TIDE project aims to simulate eutrophication on a large scale by the addition of NO3- aiming to reach 70µM concentrations from May to September every year during the growing season. This fertilization of the marsh has been going on at Sweeney Creek since the 2004 growing season through 2011 and at Clubhead Creek in 2005 and from 2009 till 2015.
Contact: Plum Island Ecosystems LTER Information Manager
The Ecosystems Center
Marine Biological Lab
7 MBL St
Woods Hole, MA 02543
Phone (508) 289 7485
Online URL:
Data File URL
Data File Name LTE-TIDE-NektonFlumeDensity
Beginning Date 9/1/2003
End Date 9/25/2015
Number of Data Records 1906
Other Files to Reference LTE-TIDE-NektonFlumeIndividual
Availability Status Type 1
Quality Control Information
Maintenance Description
Log of Changes: Version 01: January 25, 2012, updated data and metadata. Used MarcrosExportEML_HTML (working)pie_excel2007.xlsm 1/18/12 4:51 PM for QA/QC to EML 2.1.0
Version 02: June 20, 2013 data and metadata updated to comply with importation to Drupal and LTER PASTA. Research location name and description updated.Used MarcrosExportEML_HTML (working)pie_excel2007.xlsm 3/14/13 12:02 PM for QA/QC to EML 2.1.0
Version 03: February 26, 2015, data and metadata updates to comply with importation to Drupal and LTER PASTA. Used MarcrosExportEML_HTML (working)pie_excel2007_Jan2015.xlsm 1/15/15 4:26 PM for QA/QC to EML 2.1.0
Version 04: January 21, 2016, data and metadata updates to comply with importation to Drupal and LTER PASTA. Used MarcrosExportEML_HTML (working)pie_excel2007_Jan2015.xlsm 1/15/15 4:26 PM for QA/QC to EML 2.1.0
Geographic Description "Sweeney Creek", off Rowley River, Ipswich, MA West Creek, off Rowley River, Rowley, MA. Clubhead Creek off Rowley River, Rowley, MA. Nelson Island Creek, off Rowley River, Rowley,  
Location Bounding Box          
West Bounding Coordinate -70.851 -70.852 -70.842 -70.836  
East Bounding Coordinate -70.845 -70.846 -70.836 -70.831  
North Bounding Coordinate 42.724 42.741 42.742 42.744  
South Bounding Coordinate 42.719 42.736 42.738 42.74  
OR if single point location          
Taxonomic Protocols
Organisms studied Anguilla rostrata; Pungitius pungitius; Fundulus heteroclitus; Menidia menidia; Palaemonetes pugio; Sygnathus fuscus; Apeltes quadracus; Crangon septemspinosa; Clupeidae spp.; Xanthida spp.
Methods:Locations: Sweeney (SW), West (WE), Clubhead (CL), and Nelson (NE)
Flume Nets
Each year flume nets (3-4) were installed at roughly equal distances along each creek. The flume nets, installed perpendicularly to the creek channel, consisted of two sides and removable front and back panels. The 6mm mesh net side panels were dug into the marsh so that the marsh surface formed the bottom of the “flume” and attached to PVC stakes at either end. The front (cod end) of the flume was a 3m W x 1.5m H x 3m L conical shaped nylon mesh net that was anchored in the main creek channel to provide a low water refuge for nekton. The back panel was a 3m x 1.5m rectangular net attached to PVC stakes. The size and placement of the nets varied slightly in some years; 2003-2006 flume nets dimensions were 3m W x 10m L x 1.5m H the nets were placed at the creek edge in the low marsh tall Spartina alterniflora (TSA) and extended into the high marsh Spartina patens (SP); 2009-2010 flume nets were 2m W x 5 m L x 1.5 m H and placed in the high marsh (SP) habitat; 2011 flume nets were 3m W x 10m L x 1.5m H and placed in the TSA at the creek edge.
Sampling Collection and Processing
All flume net collections occurred at night within 48 hrs of the monthly spring tide from June to September. Prior to sampling events the nets were lowered to ensure nekton could freely move in and out of the sampling area. At slack high tide teams quietly approached the nets and deployed them capturing any nekton inside the area of during high tide. As the tide fell nekton were funneled into the code end where they were recovered at low tide. In the lab the nekton were identified to the lowest taxonomic level, measured to the nearest millimeter, and weighed to the nearest 0.01 grams. For fishes total length (TL) was measured from the tip of the snout to the end of the caudal fin. Shrimp TL was measured from the tip of the rostrum to the end of the tail. For crab species the carapace width was measured from its widest point.
Fish Exclusion
From 2004-2006, as part of a series of experiments to understand the role of fish in food web controls, a barrier designed to prevent the movement of fish was installed in the right branch of SW and WE. The barrier was constructed of wood, PVC, and NITEX and entrenched into the creek bottom and side walls. Fish on the upstream side of the barricade were removed to create and artificially low density. Each year at the end of the season the fish blocks were removed and reinstalled in the spring of the next year.

Data Table

Variable Name Variable Description Units Measurement Scale Code Information Number Type DateTime Format Missing Value Code Missing Value Code Explanation
Date Sampling Date   datetime     DD-MON-YYYY NA NA = not available
Creek Creek Sampled   nominal SW=Sweeney- Nutrient Enriched |NE=Nelson- Reference| WE=West- Reference| CL=Clubhead- Nutrient enriched     NA NA = not available
Branch Branch Sampled   nominal L=Left Branch| R=Right Branch| C= Confluence     NA NA = not available
Replicate Number of the replicate net   nominal       NA NA = not available
Fish Treatment Areas with low fish density were ones up stream of the block nets where fish had been removed. Ambient fish density areas were down stream of the block nes and had normal fish densities.   nominal AMB=ambient fish density | LOW=low fish density     NA NA = not available
Species Species identified to the lowest taxonomic level   nominal ANR=Anguilla rostrata American eel|PUP= Pungitius pungitius Ninespine stickleback|FUH= Fundulus heteroclitus Common mummuchog|GRC=Carcinus maenas Green crab|MEM=Menidia menidia Atlantic silverside|PAP=Palaemonetes pugio Grass shrimp|SYF=Syngnathus fuscus Commom pipefish|APQ= Apeltes quadracus Four-spined stickleback|CRS=Crangon septemspinosa Sand shrimp|CLU=Clupeid Herring menhaden etc|XAN=Xanthidae Walking crab spp     NA NA = not available
Number Caught the total number of individuals captured of a species for that sampling effort number ratio   real   NA NA = not available
Nekton density the total number captured divided by the area of the net used, in numbers/m2 numberPerMeterSquared ratio   real   NA NA = not available