Benthic point transect (PIT)

This transect records observations of benthic cover from a benthic point intercept transect (PIT) survey.

Each transect requires a transect number, the surveyed length (m), and the interval between point observations (m). E.g., points counted every 50 cm can be entered at 0.5m in the “Interval size” box.

Enter the benthic attribute observed at each point at the bottom of the page.

MERMAID will predict the benthic attributes after you type the first three letters. This ensures that all spelling is correct and consistent. Select the benthic attribute by using the ‘up’ or ‘down’ arrow keys or entering more letters so that there is only one choice and press the 'Enter' or 'Return' key to select a name.

Growth forms can be selected from the dropdown list or predicted by typing. Indo-Pacific benthic attributes are included in this version of MERMAID. They can be found using the “Reference” icon at the header of any page. New benthic attributes can be proposed to the MERMAID science team for approval and addition.

The number of rows should equal the total number of expected points based on your transect length and interval size. You will receive a warning if the number of entered rows does not match this.

The percent cover of each benthic attribute along the transect will automatically be calculated and displayed at the bottom of the rows.


Use the ‘tab’ keys to move across to the attribute, growth form and length columns. At the end of the row, press 'Enter' to create a blank row and add a new benthic attribute observation. If the same attribute is observed but with a different length, press the ‘Tab’ key at the end of the row to duplicate the benthic attribute in the next row.