[Coral-List] grading the health of coral reef ecosystem

romila sil romilasil at yahoo.co.in
Sun Feb 17 01:42:23 EST 2008

Hi everybody,

I am interested in knowing whether anybody has an idea
regarding the grading of the health of reef ecosystems
(with the concept of phase shift as the central
idea)so as to enable better management of these areas.

What I believe is that coral- macroalgae competition
is the predominant factor but not the only one in
phase shifts of reef ecosystems. It is like the
protagonist of a story without which the story
collapses. However, there are other factors which lend
their contribution to phase shifts as well,
impersonating the supporting characters of the same
story. Without understanding these seemingly less
important factors, it will be difficult to comprehend
the story and infact the story will be far from

While determining the phase shift if a reef ecosystem,
it is not the algal and hard coral cover alone to look
at; the presence as well as abundance of the other
macrobenthic conponents also needs to be accounted
for. What we need is a system of grading the health of
coral reefs, which should be specific for a small
area, such that we can ascertain the important sites
for immediate active or passive restoration

So this is my opinion on the matter. I would like it
very much if I can get some suggestions rearding this.

Romila Sil.

Romila Sil
MSc. Marine Biology and Oceanography,
Centre of Advanced Study in Marine Biolgy,
Annamalai Univerity,
Parangipetai - 608502,
Tamil Nadu,

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