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Reef morphology and sediment attributes, Roatan, Bay Islands, Honduras


A reef monitoring program off Roatan, Bay islands, Honduras has produced base line data for platform bathymetry, major macrofauna distribution, and sediment attributes. Because erosion accompanying accelerated island development will be increasing in the near future, measurements of total suspended solids and sedimentation rate were made. Results show TSS range from 8 to 70 mg/l in the summer and 30 to 222mg/l in the winter. Sedimentation rates in the fore reef, where finer-grained terrigenous material would potentially accumulate, are 0.14mg/cm2/day to 7.07mg/cm2/day in the summer and 41 to 71mg/cm2/day in the winter. The summer values are well within the ranges of published results from other Caribbean carbonate platforms, however winter values are up to ten times that of other localities.

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Mehrtens, C.J., Rosenheim, B., Modley, M. et al. Reef morphology and sediment attributes, Roatan, Bay Islands, Honduras. Carbonates Evaporites 16, 131–140 (2001).

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Key words

  • coral reefs
  • Roatan
  • Honduras
  • carbonate platforms
  • sedimentation rates