[Coral-List] Sharpnose Puffer

Melanie McField mcfield at healthyreefs.org
Fri Jan 2 15:16:55 EST 2009

I also noted the increase in sharpnose puffers in shallow back reefs North
of Half Moon Caye, Lighthouse Reef, and in the Caye Caulker Marine Reserve
(shallowbackreef) Belize, in late November. I didn't see any mortality at
that time. It seems fairly widespread through the NW Caribbean.


On Wed, Dec 31, 2008 at 11:15 PM, <sale at uwindsor.ca> wrote:

> Hi,
> This is in response to the post from Will Welbourn in Roatan.  He has
> apparently seen the same exceptional recruitment pulse (or a similarly
> timed one) to one first reported to me by Kirah Forman, of Belize
> Fisheries, who is based at Hol Chan.  Subsequently I heard from Gerardo
> Gold of CINVESTAV, Mexico that one of his students had seen large numbers
> of this species from sites between Boca Paila and Akumal on the Yucatan
> east coast.  In both cases the animals were present as very large numbers
> of juveniles, and there was also high mortality possibly from disease, but
> equally likely from starvation.  I checked with a number of other fish
> guys around the world and the consensus was that this species, like other
> relatives among the puffers, filefish and trigger fish, is prone to
> occasional exceptional recruitment events.  The interesting thing to me,
> now that we have heard of similar observations in Roatan, is just how
> extensive has the good recruitment been this autumn?  Are there several
> patches of high recruitment (Mexico, northern Belize, and Roatan) or has
> this species been successful over this relatively enormous swath of the
> western Caribbean?
> Peter Sale
> Assistant Director
> United Nations University -- International Network on Water, Environment
> and Health (UNU-INWEH)
> www.inweh.unu.edu
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Melanie McField
Coordinator, Healthy Reefs for Healthy People Initiative
Smithsonian Institution
1061 Queen Helmut St, Belize City, Belize, Central America
tel 501-223-7680  fax 501-223-7681
email: mcfield at healthyreefs.org  or mcfieldm at si.edu

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