[Coral-List] Fringing reef at La Orchila Island Venezuela how it was in the 70`s

Juan F Urich j_urich at yahoo.com
Mon Dec 19 12:57:03 EST 2005

Hi to all coral list members: I seek your advice as to the following:
  I am currently preparing two manuscripts for publication from my Bachelors thesis in Biology at Universidad Central de Venezuela regarding the coral reef community structure of a typical Caribbean fringing reef that it was in La Orchila Island Venezuela. This thesis was done during 1975-1976. I used 3 line transects along the reef profile 0-30m deep (up to 250m from the coast line), and registered coral species cover and frequencies,  performed the proper statistical signficance tests for the time (sperman rank correlation etc) I compared this reef with Goureau`s descripcion of a Caribbean Coral reef in Discovery Bay Jamaica. I also measured diversity indexes (H´, Hmax, Equitability, and simpsons index). I performed a presences absence similarity test of coral species based on Orloci distance and the resulting disimilaryty dendrogram was able to confirm Lang´s aggresion hierarchy along the zonation. Using cuadrats and distance from transects I am measured Diadema Antillarum
 densities (day time) as well as aboral diameters which I correlated to the dimension of the crevices where they ocurred. Big and intermediate size urchins where tightly aggregated and uncovered in the shallow (0- 1m) short hard substrate back reef. as well as in the Incipient A. Palmata and P. astreoides-P. branneri- S. radians-coral rubble zone. On the M. annularis (pilar growth) zone, small to intermediate size urchins showed less of an aggreagtion pattern (Var/mean ratio),and a greater correlation with crevices. The effect of spatially separated coral morphologies and habitat heterogeneities determined the spatial separation of Diadema size classes. At the time I speculated on the role of spatial heterogeneity on the urchins population dynamics in the face of potential predation.
  I am sorry for extending this story. I just realized I am excercising the abstracts.
  I understand this reef is different now (Dr. Sheila Marquez Pauls; personal communication).
  My big questions to the list are: Is it relevant to publish this work today without comparing how this reef is today. I don´t currently have the support to go back to La Orchila and do the comparison work?
  What other provisions regarding coral systematics, coral reef community structure and other current literature should I take into account?
  Any suggestions as to where to send the manuscripts for publishing?
  Thanks you for appreciated advice to you all.
  Juan F Urich

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