Advertisement

Coral Reefs

, Volume 28, Issue 1, pp 109–117 | Cite as

Coral surface area quantification–evaluation of established techniques by comparison with computer tomography

  • M. S. NaumannEmail author
  • W. Niggl
  • C. Laforsch
  • C. Glaser
  • C. Wild
Report

Abstract

The surface area of scleractinian corals represents an important reference parameter required for various aspects of coral reef science. However, with advancements in detection accuracy and novel approaches for coral surface area quantification, evaluation of established techniques in comparison with state-of-the-art technology gains importance to coral researchers. This study presents an evaluation of methodological accuracy for established techniques in comparison to a novel approach composed of computer tomography (CT) and 3-dimensional surface reconstruction. The skeleton surface area of reef corals from six genera representing the most common morphological growth forms was acquired by CT and subsequently measured by computer-aided 3-dimensional surface reconstruction. Surface area estimates for the same corals were also obtained by application of four established techniques: Simple and Advanced Geometry, Wax Coating and Planar Projection Photography. Comparison of the resulting area values revealed significant differences between the majority (82%) of established techniques and the CT reference. Genus-specific analysis assigned the highest accuracy to geometric approximations (Simple or Advanced Geometry) for the majority of assessed coral genera (maximum accuracy: 104%; Simple Geometry with Montipora sp.). The commonly used and invasive Wax Coating technique reached intermediate accuracy (47–74%) for the majority of genera, but performed outstanding in the measurement of branching Acropora spp. corals (maximum accuracy: 101%), while the Planar Projection Photography delivered genera-wide low accuracy (12–36%). Comparison of area values derived from established techniques and CT additionally yielded approximation factors (AFs) applicable as factors in the mathematical improvement of surface area estimates by established techniques in relation to CT reference accuracy.

Keywords

Coral Surface area Methods Evaluation Computer tomography 

Notes

Acknowledgements

E. Christoph of the Department for Clinical Radiology (University Hospital of Munich) and V. Witt, are acknowledged for their technical support of this work. L. Colgan and C. Williamson contributed to improve this article. We thank the editor Dr. Bernhard Riegl and two anonymous reviewers for their valuable comments. The German Research Foundation (DFG) with grant Wi 2677/2-1 to C.W. funded this research.

References

  1. Alcala MLR, Vogt H (1996) Approximation of coral reef surfaces using standardised growth forms and video counts. Proc 8th Int Coral Reef Symp 2:1453–1458Google Scholar
  2. Babcock RC (1991) Comparative demography of three species of scleractinian corals using age- and size-dependent classifications. Ecol Monogr 61:225–244CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bak RPM, Meesters EH (1998) Coral population structure: the hidden information of colony size-frequency distributions. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 162:301–306CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Benzion M, Achituv Y, Stambler N, Dubinsky Z (1991) A photographic, computerized method for measurements of surface-area in Millepora. Symbiosis 10:115–121Google Scholar
  5. Bessat F, Boiseau M, Leclerc AJ, Buigues D, Salvat B (1997) Computerized tomography and oxygen stable isotopic composition of Porites lutea skeleton at Mururoa (French Polynesia): application to the study of solar radiation influence on annual coral growth. Compt Rendus Acad Sci III Sci Vie 320:659–665Google Scholar
  6. Bohnsack JA (1979) Photographic quantitative sampling of hardbottom communities. Bull Mar Sci 29:242–252Google Scholar
  7. Bosscher H (1993) Computerized tomography and skeletal density of coral skeletons. Coral Reefs 12:97–103CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Bythell JC, Pan P, Lee J (2001) Three-dimensional morphometric measurements of reef corals using underwater photogrammetry techniques. Coral Reefs 20:193–199CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Chancerelle Y (2000) Methodes d’estimation des surfaces developpees de coraux scleractiniaires a l’echelle d’une colonie ou d’un peuplement. Oceanol Acta 23:211–219CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Cocito S, Sgorbini S, Peirano A, Valle M (2003) 3-D reconstruction of biological objects using underwater video technique and image processing. J Exp Mar Biol Ecol 297:57–70CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Courtney LA, Fisher WS, Raimondo S, Oliver LM, Davis WP (2007) Estimating 3-dimensional colony surface area of field corals. J Exp Mar Biol Ecol 351:234–242CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Dahl AL (1973) Surface area in ecological analysis: quantification of benthic coral reef algae. Mar Biol 23:239–249CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Done TJ (1981) Photogrammetry in coral ecology: a technique for the study of change in coral communities. Proc 4th Int Coral Reef Symp 2:315–320Google Scholar
  14. Fagoonee I, Wilson HB, Hassell MP, Turner JR (1999) The dynamics of zooxanthellae populations: a long-term study in the field. Science 283:843–845PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Falkowski PG, Dubinsky Z (1981) Light-shade adaptation of Stylophora pistillata, a hermatypic coral from the Gulf of Eilat. Nature 289:172–174CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Fisher W, Davis W, Quarles R, Patrick J, Campbell J, Harris P, Hemmer B, Parsons M (2007) Characterizing coral condition using estimates of three-dimensional colony surface area. Environ Monit Assess 125:347–360PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Frahm J, Haase A, Matthaei D (1986) Rapid three-dimensional MR imaging using the FLASH technique. J Comput Assist Tomogr 10:363–368PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Glynn PW, D’Croz L (1990) Experimental evidence for high temperature stress as the cause of El Nino-coincident coral mortality. Coral Reefs 8:181–191CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Goffredo S, Mattioli G, Zaccanti F (2004) Growth and population dynamics model of the Mediterranean solitary coral Balanophyllia europaea (Scleractinia, Dendrophylliidae). Coral Reefs 23:433–443CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Hoegh-Guldberg O (1988) A method for determining the surface area of corals. Coral Reefs 7:113–116CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Holmes G (2008) Estimating three-dimensional surface areas on coral reefs. J Exp Mar Biol Ecol 365:67–73CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Hounsfield GN (1973) Computerized transverse axial scanning (tomography): Part I Description of system. Br J Radiol 46:1016–1022PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Hughes TP, Jackson JBC (1985) Population dynamics and life histories of foliaceous corals. Ecol Monogr 55:141–166CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Jokiel PL, Morrissey JI (1986) Influence of size on primary production in the reef coral Pocillopora damicornis and the macroalga Acanthophora spicifera. Mar Biol 91:15–26CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Jones AM, Cantin NE, Berkelmans R, Sinclair B, Negri AP (2008) A 3D modeling method to calculate the surface areas of coral branches. Coral Reefs 27:521–526CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Kaandorp JA, Sloot PMA, Merks RMH, Bak RPM, Vermeij MJA, Maier C (2005) Morphogenesis of the branching reef coral Madracis mirabilis. Proc R Soc Biol Sci Ser B 272:127–133CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Kanwisher JW, Wainwright SA (1967) Oxygen balance in some reef corals. Biol Bull 133:378–390CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Ketcham RA, Carlson WD (2001) Acquisition, optimization and interpretation of X-ray computed tomographic imagery: applications to the geosciences. Comput Geosci 27:381–400CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Kruszynski KJ, van Liere R, Kaandorp JA (2006) An interactive visualization system for quantifying coral structures. In: Ertl T, Joy K, Santos B (eds) Eurographics/ IEEE-VGTC Symposium on Visualization, pp 1–8Google Scholar
  30. Kruszynski KJ, Kaandorp JA, van Liere R (2007) A computational method for quantifying morphological variation in scleractinian corals. Coral Reefs 26:831–840CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Laforsch C, Christoph E, Glaser C, Naumann M, Wild C, Niggl W (2008) A precise and non-destructive method to calculate the surface area in living scleractinian corals using X-ray computed tomography and 3D-modeling. Coral Reefs 27:811–820CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Marsh JA (1970) Primary productivity of reef-building calcareous red algae. Ecology 51:255–263CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Mergner H, Schuhmacher H (1979) Quantitative ökologische Analyse eines Rifflagunenareals bei Aqaba (Golf von Aqaba, Rotes Meer). Helgoländer wiss Meeresunters 32:476–507CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Meyer JL, Schultz ET (1985) Tissue condition and growth rate of corals associated with schooling fish. Limnol Oceanogr 30:157–166Google Scholar
  35. Muscatine L, Porter JW, Kaplan IR (1989) Resource partitioning by reef corals as determined from stable isotope composition. Mar Biol 100:185–193CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Odum EP, Kuenzler EJ, Blunt MX (1958) Uptake of P32 and primary productivity in marine benthic algae. Limnol Oceanogr 3:340–345CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Odum HT, Odum EP (1955) Trophic structure and productivity of a windward coral reef community on Eniwetok Atoll. Ecol Monogr 25:291–320CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Pichon M (1978) Problems of measuring and mapping coral reef colonies. In: Stoddart DR, Johannes RE (eds) Coral reefs: research methods. United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, Paris, pp 219–230Google Scholar
  39. Rahav O, Benzion M, Achituv Y, Dubinsky Z (1991) A photographic, computerized method for in situ growth measurements in reef-building cnidarians. Coral Reefs 9:204CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Roberts CM, Ormond RFG (1987) Habitat complexity and coral-reef fish diversity and abundance on Red-Sea fringing reefs. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 41:1–8CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Stimson J, Kinzie RA (1991) The temporal pattern and rate of release of zooxanthellae from the reef coral Pocillopora damicornis (Linnaeus) under nitrogen-enrichment and control conditions. J Exp Mar Biol Ecol 153:63–74CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Szmant-Froelich A (1985) The effect of colony size on the reproductive ability of the Caribbean coral Montastraea annularis (Ellis and Solander). Proc 5th Int Coral Reef Symp 4:295–300Google Scholar
  43. Tanner JE (1995) Competition between scleractinian corals and macroalgae - An experimental investigation of coral growth, survival and reproduction. J Exp Mar Biol Ecol 190:151–168CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Vollmer SV, Edmunds PJ (2000) Allometric scaling in small colonies of the scleractinian coral Siderastrea siderea (Ellis and Solander). Biol Bull 199:21–28PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Vytopil E, Willis BL (2001) Epifaunal community structure in Acropora spp. (Scleractinia) on the Great Barrier Reef: implications of coral morphology and habitat complexity. Coral Reefs 20:281–288CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Wegley L, Yu Y, Breitbart M, Casas V, Kline DI, Rohwer F (2004) Coral-associated archaea. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 273:89–96CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Wild C, Woyt H, Huettel M (2005) Influence of coral mucus on nutrient fluxes in carbonate sands. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 287:87–98CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. S. Naumann
    • 1
    Email author
  • W. Niggl
    • 1
  • C. Laforsch
    • 2
  • C. Glaser
    • 3
  • C. Wild
    • 1
  1. 1.Coral Reef Ecology Work Group (CORE), GeoBio-Center and Department of Earth and Environmental ScienceLudwig-Maximilians-University MunichMunichGermany
  2. 2.Department Biology II and GeoBio-CenterLudwig-Maximilians-University MunichMartinsriedGermany
  3. 3.Department for Clinical Radiology, University Hospital of MunichLudwig-Maximilians-University MunichMunichGermany

Personalised recommendations