Coral Reefs

, Volume 8, Issue 4, pp 163–170 | Cite as

Damage and recovery of coral reefs affected by El Niño related seawater warming in the Thousand Islands, Indonesia

  • B. E. Brown
  • Suharsono


Extensive coral bleaching occurred during sea-water warming (as a result of the 1982/3 El Niño Southern Oscillation event) in 1983 on the shallow reefs in the Java Sea. Mean seawater temperatures rose by 2–3° C over a six month period with values greater than 33° C being recorded between 1200–1500 h. As many as 80–90% of corals died on the reef flats at the study sites, with the major casualties being branching species in the genera Acropora and Pocillopora. Five years after the event the community structure of the study sites has recovered significantly, though coral cover is still 50% of its former level. Contrasting patterns of recovery at two selected sites, in close proximity to each other, are discussed.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • B. E. Brown
    • 1
  • Suharsono
    • 2
  1. 1.Centre for Tropical Coastal Management, Department of BiologyUniversity of Newcastle upon TyneNewcastle upon TyneUK
  2. 2.Centre for Oceanological Research and DevelopmentJakartaIndonesia

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