[Coral-List] Species-area curves (Sean Porter)

safran yusri safran_yusri2003 at yahoo.com
Tue Mar 22 22:46:09 EDT 2011

Dear Dr. Sean Porter

We have a report on marine biodiversity of Seribu Islands National Park, 
Jakarta, Indonesia. It is in Indonesian.Currently, we don't have the english 
version of the report but you can contact me directly which part of the report 
you wish to translate.

It is available here: http://terangi.or.id/publications/pdf/tkj2007_web.pdf

In page 78, there is a species area curve for corals, fish, and non coral 
 Safran Yusri
Green web, cheap hosting

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Subject: Coral-List Digest, Vol 31, Issue 16

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Today's Topics:

   1. Re: Tsunami and Atolls, low-lying islands (Verena Wiesbauer Ali)
   2. Re: Tsunami on atolls from ITIC Tsunami Bulletin Board (Don Baker)
   3. Species-area curves (Sean Porter)
   4. Tsunami on atolls from ITIC Tsunami Bulletin (Eugene Shinn)
   5. Re: Coral immortality (Delbeek, Charles)


Message: 1
Date: Tue, 22 Mar 2011 13:57:08 +0500
From: Verena Wiesbauer Ali <marinebiology.verena at gmail.com>
Subject: Re:  [Coral-List] Tsunami and Atolls, low-lying islands
To: coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
    <AANLkTinwHhg+jTxUZfasP+747CAZTZtcPsBWQRgKWM0d at mail.gmail.com>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1

Dr. Fenner encouraged me to post following reply to his question, whether
there were deaths in the Maldives after the 2004 Tsunami, to the group:

Yes there were deaths - must be around 100 because 82 were confirmed dead
and another 26 went missing (don't know if they have turned out dead or
not!?). Anyhow, important is that about 12,000 became homeless, some of
which are still living in temporary shelters (they don't want to leave!). At
least 23 tourist resorts were damaged  and had to be re-built or renovated -
tourism is the Maldivians' livelihood (besides fishing). Here's some more
info: http://www.unep.org/tsunami/reports/TSUNAMI_MALDIVES_LAYOUT.pdf
Now the government has to seriously deal with our low-lying islands, but it
is difficult to convince the people that it would be wise to move to a
larger island.

The danger from Tsunamis to low-lying islands like the Maldives is extremely

Interestingly, it seems that the few mangrove areas we have might have
absorbed some of the devastating power of the tsunami in a few islands:


Verena Wiesbauer Ali, M.Sc.
Marine Biologist / Zoologist
EIA  Consultant: 03/10
Austria and Maldives


Message: 2
Date: Tue, 22 Mar 2011 20:11:20 +0800 (SGT)
From: Don Baker <reefpeace at yahoo.com>
Subject: Re: [Coral-List] Tsunami on atolls from ITIC Tsunami Bulletin
To: Bruce Richmond <brichmond at usgs.gov>
Cc: coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
Message-ID: <770091.1879.qm at web76702.mail.sg1.yahoo.com>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii

Thanks Bruce for explaining the Pacific Atoll issue.......vs  other atolls 
mentioned herein this forum.  The Marshall Islands actually went on alert after 
the Japan earthquake but was downgraded later..even before the wave force hit 
Midway I believe.  Its indeed the bathymetry ......


From: Bruce Richmond <brichmond at usgs.gov>
To: coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
Cc: Gerard Fryer <gerard.fryer at noaa.gov>
Sent: Tue, March 22, 2011 5:45:23 AM
Subject: [Coral-List] Tsunami on atolls from ITIC Tsunami Bulletin Board

Coral - listers,

FYI - Here is a recent posting on the tsunami hazard on atolls by Gerard
Fryer at the NOAA Pacific  Tsunami Warning Center:

The question of tsunami hazard on atolls comes up a lot. But if you search
all the catalogs, you'll find very little data on tsunami runup on Pacific
atolls, presumably because there have been so few observations, despite the
five great ocean-crossing tsunamis of the 20th century. The highest value I
am aware of is at Midway in 1952, when runup reached 1.9 meters. That was
for an exceptionally large earthquake, however, magnitude 9, and Midway was
square in the center of the radiated beam and only 3000 km from the source.
Where on the atoll the 1.9 measurement was made I don't know, but from
photographs of cars driving through the flood, I suspect it was on the
lagoon side of the west island. The lagoon had been extensively dredged and
the pass to the NW (facing the approaching tsunami from Kamchatka) had been
deepened and broadened during WWII. I suspect the flooding was a  consequence
of that modification. (BTW, Midway has a tide gauge, but it's pretty crummy;
its measurements of tsunamis are very erratic and vary tremendously with
azimuth). The only other island with measurements approaching Midway's is
Johnston Atoll---another atoll extensively modified by dredging---where the
Chile tsunami of 1960 had a runup of 0.7 meters. Of atolls not extensively
modified to handle shipping, the highest runup I am aware of is at
Kiritimati in 1960, which recorded a runup of 0.3 meters. So if your island
is 2 m high, you are safe.

Why should the hazard be so low? The answer is sea level rise since the last
glaciation. For the last 18k years, coral has been very happy and growing
almost vertically upwards. As a consequence, each atoll in the Pacific has
very steep upper slopes, making the island look pretty much like a spar buoy
to the approaching tsunami. The tsunami just doesn't  interact with the
island much. Unless man has gone in and modified things, runup seems to be
little more than a factor of two from the height of the tsunami on the open
ocean. Compare that to a factor of five or six for open coasts on high
islands (and even more where there is focusing). Even high islands have a
tremendously reduced hazard if they have reefs. For example, the greatest
runup in Tahiti in 1960 was about a meter, and that was opposite a pass
through the reef. By contrast, in 1960 Hawaii saw about 3 meters on open
coasts without focusing and numerous locations where runup approached 10
meters (in Hilo runup reached 11 meters and 61 people died).

Given all the above, what happened in the Maldives in 2004? Runup at those
atolls averaged about 3 meters and many of the islands were completely
inundated. The Maldives, however, stood as a rampart across the path of the
2004 tsunami and were only  2000 km away from the source. The
Maldive-Laccadive Ridge is also shallower than the abyssal Pacific from
which most Pacific atolls rise, so the tsunami was influenced more by the
bathymetry (runup in the Maldives was still systematically less than at
mainland sites). The geography of the Maldives is exquisitely bad for
tsunamis coming from Sumatra. By contrast, there is no island group in the
Pacific lying squarely astride the path of any tsunami from a subduction
zone. Even the Tuamotus, whose closely-spaced islands would appear to make
the group a vulnerable target, are aligned parallel to rather than across
the path of tsunamis from South America.

Take tsunami warnings seriously, but don't overreact.


Gerard Fryer


NOAA Pacific Tsunami Warning Center

91-270 Fort Weaver Road

Ewa Beach, HI  96706-2928, USA

+1 808 689 8207


Bruce Richmond
U.S. Geological Survey

Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center
400 Natural Bridges Drive
Santa Cruz, CA 95060
Phone: (831) 427-4731
Fax: (831) 427-4748

Coral-List mailing list
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Message: 3
Date: Tue, 22 Mar 2011 15:28:24 +0200
From: "Sean Porter" <caranx at polka.co.za>
Subject: [Coral-List]  Species-area curves
To: <coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov>
Message-ID: <EBFA135062EA4F818BFE3D04E4D0139E at ports>
Content-Type: text/plain; format=flowed; charset="iso-8859-1";

Dear Colleagues,

I am writing a review on marine biodiversity and protected area targets. I 
am specifically looking for examples of marine habitat-specific species-area 
curves either published or in reports (grey literature).

If any of you have such information and would be willing to share it please 
could you contact me or forward the relevant reports.

best wishes and thank you in advance,


Dr. Sean Porter
12 Forest Lane
South Africa
+27 33 3434163
+27 82  5148014


Message: 4
Date: Tue, 22 Mar 2011 10:04:09 -0400
From: Eugene Shinn <eshinn at marine.usf.edu>
Subject: [Coral-List] Tsunami on atolls from ITIC Tsunami Bulletin
To: coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
Message-ID: <a06230902c9ae58d5d0ee@[]>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii" ; format="flowed"

Thanks Bruce, Good response and excellent information from Gerard 
Fryer. Thanks for posting it. Effect of tsunamis on Pacific atolls 
was a subject I had never considered. Geologically this is good 
information to remember. Gene

No Rocks, No Water, No Ecosystem (EAS)
------------------------------------  -----------------------------------
E. A. Shinn, Courtesy Professor
University of South Florida
Marine Science Center (room 204)
140 Seventh Avenue South
St. Petersburg, FL 33701
<eshinn at marine.usf.edu>
Tel 727 553-1158---------------------------------- 


Message: 5
Date: Tue, 22 Mar 2011 08:21:25 -0700
From: "Delbeek, Charles" <CDelbeek at calacademy.org>
Subject: Re: [Coral-List] Coral immortality
To: Mark Spalding <mark at mdspalding.co.uk>,
    "coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov"    <coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov>
    <09DB2E532F2E564EAA2B49C495D7CDB134C4B1EACF at MAILBOXCLUSTER.calacademy.org>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

Is there anything to suggest that these massive corals slow in growth rate once 
they reach a certain size as is seen in Tridacna clams?

I seem to recall reading somewhere that Pocillopora meandrina in Hawaii have a 
limited life space of about 10 years, which would explain why you do not see 
them above a certain size and why you often find  dead specimens encrusted with 
corallines at about the same size.

Best regards,

J. Charles Delbeek, M.Sc.
Assistant Curator, Steinhart Aquarium
California Academy of Sciences

p 415.379.5303
f. 415.379.5304
cdelbeek at calacademy.org

55 Music Concourse Dr.
Golden Gate Park
San Francisco CA 94118

The world's only aquarium-planetarium-rainforest-living museum.

-----Original Message-----
From: coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov 
[mailto:coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov] On Behalf Of Mark Spalding
Sent: Monday, March 21, 2011 3:23 PM
To: coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
Subject: [Coral-List] Coral immortality

I commend Gene Shinn once again for getting us all thinking. Of course the
suggestion that that a polyphyletic group such as corals might all suddenly
die in a natural cycle of events rather like bamboos is a bit bizarre, and
the original paper (Perry and Smithers) he referred us to does not begin to
suggest that this is what is happening. We all know that corals die, and I
suppose we could also talk about reefs "dying" (in the sense only that
periods of active reef growth are interspersed with periods of non-growth or
even erosion). Most authors then look for indicators of cause, rather than
claiming old age. And throughout geological history there have been many

But I agree with Gene that we need to be a little more critical and  avoid
bandwagons. When diving in the "dying" reefs of the Southern Seychelles
during the 1998 coral bleaching I remember noticing the lack of any large
corals whatsoever on the out reef slopes. Here there were lots of massive
corals (mostly bleached or recently dead), but none in colonies larger than
about 60-80cm diameter. (There were much bigger ones in the lagoons.) I
remember commenting that maybe this sort of coral die-off happens more
regularly than we think. Most of those reefs have made good recoveries, but
the individual corals died. An obvious and interesting study would be a very
large-scale analysis of maximum sizes of corals. My guess is that an old-age
hypothesis would produce a nice simple tailing off size-frequency curve, but
that if there are big global or regional events we might see some nice
breaks in those curves, with major drops in the numbers above certain sizes
indicating such events.  (Maybe someone's already done that?).

That gets at the dying corals (regular natural or human induced
perturbance), but dying reefs need some level of sustained perturbance. I
have to admit that it worries me when a geologist says "don't worry, it'll
get better again". When exactly? Perhaps they've spent too long studying
near-immortality to realise that most people care about now, next year and
the next generation.

And just because some things happen naturally doesn't mean that we should
relax if we produce the same impact by human actions. Whether compounding
threats are synergistic or just mildly additive it's not a clever response
to say let's not worry, its happened before. Giant panda's survived
innumerable cycles of bamboo flowering, but not surprisingly now face
extinction because we added to the problem, mostly through habitat loss.
Think about  it!


Mark D Spalding, PhD
Senior Marine Scientist, Global Marine Team
The Nature Conservancy
Conservation Science Group, University of Cambridge

Reefs at Risk Revisited - www.wri.org/reefs
Recent books: The World's Protected Areas; The Atlas of Global Conservation
World Atlas of Mangroves - www.earthscan.co.uk 

    Date: Fri, 18 Mar 2011 14:04:05 -0400
    From: Eugene Shinn <eshinn at marine.usf.edu>
    Subject: Re: [Coral-List] Coral immortality
    To: coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
    Message-ID:  <a06230903c9a94e76aa1b@[]>
    Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii" ; format="flowed"

    Good! We got to express ourselves about technical aspects of corals
    and reefs. The subject received two kinds of responses. Those that
    agreed that corals die of old age (mainly off-line) and those that
    disagreed (all on-line). I would like to propose another question for
    discussion. What if all the bamboo on earth began to die at the same
    time? Would there be finger pointing and accusations as to who, and
    what, caused it? I think there would be if it were not for the
    Chinese who have been watching such events for centuries. Bamboo is a
    major construction material in Asia and also the main food for
    Pandas. Do some Google searching and you will find that one  species
    dies worldwide at the same time about every 125 years (associated
    with flowering). Other species die on shorter time scales and one in
    northern India flowers and bears fruit once every 40 years leading to
    a plague of rats that consume much of the rice crops leading to
    famine. Now before you say bamboo is in no way related to coral I ask
    how do we know that corals do not naturally go through similar boom
    and bust cycles. Who was diving and paying attention to corals and
    coral recruitment 100 years ago? Unfortunately even the geologic
    record is of little direct help. It is only because of the Chinese
    historical records that we know about bamboo cycles that prevents us
    from becoming hysterical.
    As for Doug Fenners remarks about sea level he is  correct,
    Massive corals in shallow water do reach the surface and can grow no
    more. That can be seen on patch reefs in the Florida Keys. In
    addition sea levels fluctuates and corals are killed when the sea
    goes down. However, for the vast majority of the reef tract bordering
    the clear blue Gulf stream the water is 20 to-30-ft deep and there
    are hundreds of widely scattered heads that are less than 200 years
    old. Coals there have had at least 6,000 years to grow! Why are they
    all about the same size? And why is the reef accumulation no more
    than 1 meter thick over the vast extent of the reef tract? Head coral
    growth-rate is much faster than the known rise in sea level so why
    did they not keep pace and make coral heads 20 ft high? Either, like
    bamboo,  various species died synchronously on some schedule we are
    unaware of, or they were killed by some environmental factor i.e.
    Hurricanes, disease, cold fronts and/or warming evens. Either way it
    is clear that many non anthropogenic events have kept the Florida
    reef tact from outpacing the well-known rise in sea level since the
    last glacial maximum when sea level was more than the length of a
    foot ball field below present I contend that many mysteries remain!
    If only we were doing the science/research aimed at understanding non
    anthropogenic causes of coral death. In stead we keep hammering away
    at the "usual suspects" that is driven by NGOs and other funding
    The remarks concerning Enewetak demonstrate that the Atoll has
    been able to keep pace  with the many sea level fluctuations that have
    occurred over the past 65 million years. I spent 2 months there
    involved in drilling and diving. Unfortunately there are many atolls
    that did not respond well or could not keep up with subsidence. They
    now lie hundreds of meters below sea level and are called guyots.
    A Clarification: I certainly was not suggesting that corals are
    immortal. Just the opposite! Just needed a snappy title. Also, most
    organisms do not die of old age. They die of any number of diseases
    when they become weakened by old age. Could that be what we are
    seeing today? It is interesting that A. cervicornis "sticks" exposed
    in deep trenches made by ship groundings and other causes are more
    robust and often 2 to 3 times the diameter of those that  died
    recently. In our paper (Shinn et. Al., 2003) we carbon 14-dated 39
    randomly collected, (actually hap-hazard), fossil sticks in reef sand
    over a hundred mile long stretch of the Florida reef tract, We found
    specimens that dated from 6,000 years old to the present (all near
    the surface). What was most interesting was a convincing 500 year
    absence of Staghorn centered at 4,500 years ago and another less
    convincing 500 year absence centered at around 3,000 years. The
    4,500-year interval correlates well with a period of inferred ice
    rafting determined from deep sea sediment cores. There were probably
    many climate episodes during the Holocene. Gene

    Reference: Shinn, E. A., Reich, C. D., Hickey, T. D., and Lidz, B.
    H., 2003, Staghorn tempestites in  the Florida Keys, Coral Reefs, 22:


    No Rocks, No Water, No Ecosystem (EAS)
    ------------------------------------ -----------------------------------
    E. A. Shinn, Courtesy Professor
    University of South Florida
    Marine Science Center (room 204)
    140 Seventh Avenue South
    St. Petersburg, FL 33701
    <eshinn at marine.usf.edu>
    Tel 727 553-1158----------------------------------


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