The impact of tourists on Antarctic tardigrades: an ordination-based model

  • Sandra J. McInnes | British Antarctic Survey, Natural Environment Research Council, United Kingdom.
  • Philip J.A. Pugh Anglia Ruskin University, United Kingdom.


Tardigrades are important members of the Antarctic biota yet little is known about their role in the soil fauna or whether they are affected by anthropogenic factors. The German Federal Environment Agency commissioned research to assess the impact of human activities on soil meiofauna at 14 localities along the Antarctic peninsula during the 2009/2010 and 2010/2011 austral summers. We used ordination techniques to re-assess the block-sampling design used to compare areas of high and low human impact, to identify which of the sampled variables were biologically relevant and/or demonstrated an anthropogenic significance. We found the most significant differences between locations, reflecting local habitat and vegetation factor, rather than within-location anthropogenic impact. We noted no evidence of exotic imports but report on new maritime Antarctic sample sites and habitats.


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Author Biography

Philip J.A. Pugh, Anglia Ruskin University
Department of Life Sciences
12th International Symposium on Tardigrada
Supporting Agencies
UBA F&E Project FKZ 3709 85 157
Tardigrada, soil, alien introduction, maritime Antarctic.
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How to Cite
McInnes S, Pugh P. The impact of tourists on Antarctic tardigrades: an ordination-based model. jlimnol [Internet]. 3May2013 [cited 29Mar.2020];72(1s):e16. Available from: