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Biophysical Characteristics

A student’s guide to the fauna of seashores in West Africa


The countries of West Africa are largely reliant on the sea to feed their growing populations but yet most individuals remain unaware of the effects of the human activities on the health of the ocean. There is a strong need for environmental education but yet the fundamental requirement for ecosystem management is the ability to identify the species and quantify their distribution and abundance. For many groups this is not yet possible in West Africa. This book is an attempt to provide basic information on the the most common species of animals found in the intertidal zone of West Africa. In writing our intention is that it should underpin courses in marine ecology at senior level in secondary schools and at the undergraduate level. In particular, Chapter 2 is intended to provide those unacquainted with marine animal phyla with a simple introduction to their identification.   From this chapter, readers will be led to sections on suggested field exercises is also provided for teachers unfamiliar with the seashore. Our intention is that the book should be freely photocopied by educational establishments and for that reason we have avoided including coloured plates.

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