Published Mar 17, 2023


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Lersy López Gutiérrez

Martha Torres

Esteban Zarza

Alejandro Henao-Castro

Laura Contreras Vega



The study of bacterial communities is highly relevant in relation to the knowledge of global biological biodiversity and the biogeochemical cycles of the planet. Microbiological activity is the basis of ecosystems functioning, among these are the mangroves, which offer a wide variety of goods and services to humanity. Nevertheless, they have been severely impacted by anthropogenic activities such as felling, heavy metal pollution, water enrichment, overexploitation of resources, among others. This research aimed to characterize the culturable bacterial community from the water column and the oyster Crassostrea rhizophorae muscle tissue in a mangrove ecosystem from the Cartagena Bay, Colombian Caribbean as a baseline for future studies on bioremediation treatments. To accomplish this, four samplings were conducted over the course of a year, including contrasting climatic seasons (e.g., windy and rainy), collecting oyster individuals from mangroves and samples from superficial water. The bacterial community comprised 25 species, from which 9 were exclusive for the oyster tissue, 7 for the water column, and 9 generalists isolated from both types of samples. Enterobacter cloacae was the most frequent species during the year, followed by Escherichia coli and Erwinia sp.
There were significant differences in the species composition between the sampling months (ANOSIM, R = 0:492; p=D 0:001), because of the presence of a higher number of exclusive species in December than in the other months. Furthermore, the physicochemical variables that presented a major influence on the bacterial community composition were the wind velocity and the dissolved oxygen. The review of this research findings will allow to detect if any of the identified species could be exploited for bioremediation treatments, and it will contribute to the preservation of marine-coastal water bodies biodiversity.


Bacterial community, Bioremediation, Crassostrea rhizophorae, Swamp, Mangrove

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How to Cite
López Gutiérrez, L., Torres, M., Zarza, E., Henao-Castro, A., & Contreras Vega, L. (2023). Composition of the culturable bacterial community associated with the water column and soft tissues from oysters of the mangrove ecosystem at Honda Swamp, Colombian Caribbean. Universitas Scientiarum, 28(1), 43–63.
Marine Biology, Oceanography, Ecology