[Coral-List] Parrot Fish deaths

Frank Muller-Karger carib at marine.usf.edu
Wed Jul 16 21:08:54 EDT 2003

Dianne - an alternative may be some effect from alternating river plumes 
affecting your area.

This is a preliminary observation only based on ocean color satellite 
data (SeaWiFS and MODIS): A large lens of Amazon plume water reached the 
Lesser Antilles in early May 03 and hung around but mainly east of the 
islands apparently through about end of June while dispersing to the 
north and east. In the past few days (early to mid-July) there is an 
indication that perhaps Orinoco water moved into your area.

I also agree with you that massive local discharge may have something to 
do with this phenomenon you observed.


diannewilson wrote:

>Dear Coral List;
>    I live on a small island in the Eastern Caribbean within the Grenadines.  As a dive instructor, I am on the reefs daily.  After 9 days of heavy rain, high seas and winds, the sun and flat seas have returned.  When the weather cleared, what appear to be Stop Light Parrot fish began to wash up on the beach of a sandy bay.  This bay has little to no coral, so they must have been coming from farther out.  In the small teaching area which has several small coral heads, I found 4 dead parrot fish laying on the bottom, all the same species.  There were no apparent injuries.  No other kind of fish have been found dead.  
>The only other anomaly is we are sighting sting rays, usually rare, but we have seen several since the storm.  I can't see how this could affect the parrot fish.  I know parrot fish munch coral for the algae.  Could there have been some run off from the island because of the heavy rain, that has introduced a toxin to the coral?  
>Our coral is generally very healthy.  We have good populations of reef fish, urchins (white and black) and many varieties of coral.  We have some unusual algae in pockets, though it is not wide spread. We are dealing with what we think are the apparent causes of this stringy algae.  Environmental products are in wide use on the island, and we are on our way to a successful phosphate ban.  It is voluntary so use of phosphates are getting more rare.  We are not seeing any black band or bleaching.
>Can anyone offer a suggestion as to why we are seeing dead parrot fish, and if there is anything we have done that we could prevent in the future.
>Many thanks.
>Dianne Wilson
>St Vincent
>West Indies
>Coral-List mailing list
>Coral-List at coral.aoml.noaa.gov

__________________ FMK __________________
Frank Muller-Karger
Institute for Marine Remote Sensing/IMaRS
College of Marine Science
University of South Florida
140 7th Ave. South
St Petersburg, FL 33701

  (727) 553-3335 Office
  (727) 553-1186 Lab.
  (727) 553-1103 FAX

<< carib at marine.usf.edu >>
<< http://imars.usf.edu>>

More information about the Coral-List mailing list