Abstract. In October 1992, the Oceanographic Centre of Málaga of the Spanish Oceanographical Institute (IEO) started a monitoring project, Ecomálaga, which collects physical, chemical, biological and sedimentological data from the Alborán Sea shelf. The project is coordinated with similar projects in the Atlantic and Mediterranean Centres of IEO. The ultimate objective is to understand the long-term changes of the essential marine-environmental parameters. So far, nine quarterly surveys have been carried out – from October 1992 to December 1994. The following variables were registered: abiotic: location, weather, water temperature, salinity, pH, dissolved oxygen, chlorophyll a, nitrate, nitrite, phosphate, silicate; biotic: zooplankton biomass and species composition, and ichthyoplankton. The granulometric composition and organic matter content of sediments are also included. Data are stored in a computerized data base named Ecomálaga Data Base, with contributions from geology, physics, plankton biology and marine chemistry. The data base not only contains separate files for each research topic, but also allows for interchange between these files, resulting in a synoptic data output. It offers the users an output in the form of synthetic records of each station sampled. The analysis of the data indicates seasonal influences and a inshore-offshore gradient, as well as an Atlantic influence on the stations located in the transect closest to the Strait of Gibraltar.
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