Coral Reefs

, Volume 13, Issue 4, pp 231–241 | Cite as

Kenyan coral reef lagoon fish: effects of fishing, substrate complexity, and sea urchins

  • T. R. McClanahan
Reports

Abstract

Population density, number of species, diversity, and species-area relationships of fish species in eight common coral reef-associated families were studied in three marine parks receiving total protection from fishing, four sites with unregulated fishing, and one reef which recently received protection from fishing (referred to as a transition reef). Data on coral cover, reef topographic complexity, and sea urchin abundance were collected and correlated with fish abundance and species richness. The most striking result of this survey is a consistent and large reduction in the population density and species richness of 5 families (surgeonfish, triggerfish, butterflyfish, angelfish, and parrotfish). Poor recovery of parrotfish in the transition reef, relative to other fish families, is interpreted as evidence for competitive exclusion of parrotfish by sea urchins. Reef substrate complexity is significantly associated with fish abundance and diversity, but data suggest different responses for protected versus fished reefs, protected reefs having higher species richness and numbers of individuals than unprotected reefs for the same reef complexity. Sea urchin abundance is negatively associated with numbers of fish and fish species but the interrelationship between sea urchins, substrate complexity, coral cover, and management make it difficult to attribute a set percent of variance to each factor-although fishing versus no fishing appears to be the strongest variable in predicting numbers of individuals and species of fish, and their community similarity. Localized species extirpation is evident for many species on fished reefs (for the sampled area of 1.0 ha). Fifty-two of 110 species found on protected reefs were not found on unprotected reefs.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Allen GR (1985) Butterfly and Angelfishes of the World. Hans A. Baensch, Melles, GermanyGoogle Scholar
  2. Allen GR (1991) Damselfishes of the World. Hans A. Baensch, Melles, GermanyGoogle Scholar
  3. Bellwood DR (1990) A functional analysis of grazing in parrotfishes (family Scaridae): the ecological implications. Environ Biol Fish 28:189–214Google Scholar
  4. Bohnsack JA (1990) The potential of marine fishery reserves for reef fish management in the US southern Atlantic. NOAA Technical Memorandom NMFS-SEFC-261, MiamiGoogle Scholar
  5. Bray JR, Curtis JT (1957) An ordination of the upland forest communities of sourthern Wisconsin. Ecol Monogr 27:325–349Google Scholar
  6. Carpenter RC (1990) Mass mortality of Diadema antillarum effects on population densities and grazing intensities of parrotfishes and surgeonfishes. Mar Biol 104:79–86Google Scholar
  7. Fischer W, Bianchi G (1984) FAO species indentification sheets: for fishery purposes. FAO RomeGoogle Scholar
  8. Fowler AJ (1987) The development of sampling strategies for population studies of coral reef fishes: a case study. Coral Reefs 6:49–58Google Scholar
  9. Goeden GB (1982) Intensive fishing and “keystone” predator species: ingredients for community instability. Biol Cons 22:273–281Google Scholar
  10. Greene LE (1990) The use of discrete group censusing for assessment and monitoring of reef fish assemblages. PhD Dissertation, Florida Institute of Technology, MelbourneGoogle Scholar
  11. Grigg RW (1994) Effects of sewage discharge, fishing pressure and habitat complexity on coral ecosystems and reef fishes in Hawaii. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 103:25–34Google Scholar
  12. Hay ME, Taylor PR (1985) Competition between herbivorous fishes and urchins on Caribbean reefs. Oecologia 65:591–598Google Scholar
  13. Koslow JA, Hanley F, Wicklund R (1988) Effects of fishing on reef fish communities at Pedro Bank and Port Royal Cays, Jamaica. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 43:201–212Google Scholar
  14. Lincoln-Smith MP (1988) Effects of observer swimming speed on sample counts of temperate rocky reef fish assemblages. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 43:223–231Google Scholar
  15. Ludwig JA, Reynolds JF (1988) Statistical ecology: a primer on methods and computing. Wiley, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  16. McClanahan TR (1989) Kenyan coral reef-associated gastropod fauna: a comparison between protected and unprotected reefs. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 53:11–20Google Scholar
  17. McClanahan TR (1990a) Hierarchical control of coral reef ecosystems. PhD Dissertation, University of Florida, GainesvilleGoogle Scholar
  18. McClanahan TR (1990b) Kenyan coral reef-associated gastropod assemblages: distribution and diversity patterns. Coral Reefs 9:63–74Google Scholar
  19. McClanahan TR (1992) Resource utilization, competition and predation: a model and example from coral reef grazers. Ecol Mod 61:195–215Google Scholar
  20. McClanahan TR, Kurtis JD (1991) Population regulation of the rock-boring sea urchin Echinometra mathaei (de Blainville). J Exp Mar Biol Ecol 147:121–146Google Scholar
  21. McClanahan TR, Muthiga NA (1988) Changes in Kenyan coral reef community structure due to exploitation. Hydrobiologia 166:269–276Google Scholar
  22. McClanahan TR, Shafir SH (1990) Causes and consequences of sea urchin abundance and diversity in Kenyan coral reef lagoons. Oecologia 83:362–370Google Scholar
  23. McClanahan TR, Muthiga NA (1992) Comparative sampling of epibenthic subtidal gastropods. J Exp Mar Biol Ecol 164:87–101Google Scholar
  24. McClanahan TR, Mutere JC (1994) Coral and sea urchin assemblage structure and inter-relationship in Kenyan reef laggons. Hydrobiologia (in press)Google Scholar
  25. Roberts CM, Polunin NVC (1991) Are marine reserves effective in management of reef fisheries? Rev Fish Biol Fisheries 1:65–91Google Scholar
  26. Robertson DR (1991) Increases in surgeonfish populations after mass mortality of the sea urchin Diadema antillarum in Panama indicate food limitation. Mar Biol 111:437–444Google Scholar
  27. Routledge RD (1979) Diversity indices: which ones are admissible? J Theor Biol 76:502–515Google Scholar
  28. Russ GR (1991) Coral reef fisheries: effects and vields. In: Sale PF (ed) The ecology of fishes on coral reefs. Academic Press, San Diego, pp 601–635Google Scholar
  29. Russ GR, Alcala AC (1989) Effects of intense fishing pressure on an assemblage of coral reef fishes. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 56:13–27Google Scholar
  30. Sale PF (1991a) The ecology of fishes on coral reefs. Academic Press, San DiegoGoogle Scholar
  31. Sale PF (1991b) Reef fish communities: open nonequilibrial systems. In: Sale PF (ed) The ecology on coral reefs. Academic Press, San Diego, pp 564–598Google Scholar
  32. Sale PF, Guy JA (1991) Persistence of community structure: what happens when you change taxonomy scale. Coral Reefs 11:147–160Google Scholar
  33. Samoilys MA (1988) Abundance and species richness of coral reef fish on the Kenyan Coast: the effects of protective management and fishing. Proc 6th Int Coral Reef Symp 2:261–266Google Scholar
  34. Smith MM, Heemstra PC (1986) Smiths' sea fishes. Springer, New York Berlin HeidelbergGoogle Scholar
  35. Sokal RR, Rohlf FJ (1981) Biometry (2nd ed). Freeman, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  36. Stoddart JA (1984) Genetic differentiation amongst populations of the coral Pocillopora damicornis of southwestern Australia. Coral Reefs 3:149–156Google Scholar
  37. Watts RJ, Johnson MS, Black R (1990) Effects of recruitment on genetic patchiness in the urchin Echinometra mathaei in Western Australia. Mar Biol 105:145–151Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • T. R. McClanahan
    • 1
  1. 1.Coral Reef Conservation ProjectThe Wildlife Conservation SocietyMombasaKenya

Personalised recommendations