Distribution, relative abundance and diversity of deep-sea species at São Pedro and São Paulo Archipelago, Brazil
The goal of the present study is to investigate vertical distribution, relative abundance and diversity of deep-sea species caught using baited traps at São Pedro and São Paulo Archipelago (SPSPA). The surveys were carried out between January 2012 and June 2014 at depths ranging from 170 to 700 m, comprising 53 hauls. Five species of crustaceans, ten of fishes and three of mollusks were caught. The deep-sea geryonid crab Chaceon gordonae was the most abundant species, followed by the Gadiform (Moridae) fish Physiculus sp. The results showed a clear bathymetric stratification, with some species being restricted to shallower layers (170-300 m) and others showing a wider distribution (200-700 m). Several factors can influence the vertical distribution of these species, including oceanographic and biological characteristics. In the future, more studies should be conducted in order to elucidate the interaction between distribution, relative abundance and diversity with various elements that make up the dynamics of this complex ecosystem.