[Coral-List] Re: A healthy Reef in the Florida Keys?

Esther Peters esther.peters at verizon.net
Fri Feb 17 11:40:25 EST 2006

Gregor and Phil make good points.  As part of an exercise to look at 
reef classification for the purpose of developing coral reef 
biocriteria, I examined the Coral Reef Evaluation and Monitoring Program 
data from the Keys collected in 1996, looking at coral cover, species 
dominance, and richness, and applying the "coral morphological 
triangles" (conservation class) concept of Edinger and Risk (2000).  A 
preliminary comparison with the results obtained from the 2004 CREMP 
dataset revealed that just in those few years there were significant 
structural and functional changes at some offshore shallow reef sites. 
     And of course, based on long-time Keys' residents and reef 
scientists, we know of even more changes over the past 25 years.  The 
Nature Conservancy's diverse approach is also important to help us 
understand reef dynamics in the Keys and the influences of natural and 
anthropogenic disturbances.  I'm not sure that anyone has figured out 
the "standard, or baseline reef."  My first look at this issue indicates 
that even in the Keys there are several biotopes and more investigations 
are needed as to which one(s) should serve as "reference condition" for 
each class.

Esther Peters

Gregor Hodgson wrote:

> Hi Phil,
> I think that we are about 25 years too late at best to establish a
> "baseline." Might be good to trawl old video?
> Since you raised the "R" word - may I comment that while 'resilency' may be
> a useful heuristic tool, its relevance to coral reef conservation is nil. It
> is impossible to predict what the future holds for individual coral reefs
> given the large scale changes expected in ocean and atmospheric circulation,
> sea level and linked chemical and biological parameters. In fact, basing
> conservation models on our guesses at "resilency" rather than bet-hedging
> will likely increase the chances of losing more reefs. 
> Over the long term, luckily there are several hundred species of corals and
> only one species of human.
> Regards,
> Greg
> -----Original Message-----
> From: coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> [mailto:coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov] On Behalf Of Phil Dustan
> Sent: Thursday, February 16, 2006 7:39 AM
> To: coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> Subject: [Coral-List] Re: A healthy Reef in the Florida Keys?
> Dear Listers,
> 	With all this work, talk, and conferencing on coral reef resiliency 
> underway, I was wondering if anyone can identify a healthy reef (as 
> measured by some suite of measurable parameters) in the Florida Keys or 
> Dry Tortugas that we could use as a "standard, or baseline reef".
> 			Thanks,
> 			Phil
> _______________________________________________
> Coral-List mailing list
> Coral-List at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> http://coral.aoml.noaa.gov/mailman/listinfo/coral-list
> _______________________________________________
> Coral-List mailing list
> Coral-List at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> http://coral.aoml.noaa.gov/mailman/listinfo/coral-list

More information about the Coral-List mailing list