Coral Data & Publications
Record 8 of 71 for Flower Garden Banks region search.
||Biogeographic Characterization of Fish Communities within the Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary (2006 - 2007)
||The overarching goal of this collaboration was to provide the Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary (FGBNMS) staff with information on biogeographic patterns within the Sanctuary. This specific project focused on the development of a plan to spatially and quantitatively characterize the fish communities in relatively shallow waters throughout the Sanctuary (<110 ft). This collaboration also included the initial implementation of that plan. The FGBNMS represents the northernmost tropical western Atlantic coral reef on the continental shelf and support the most highly developed offshore hard bank community in the region. The complexity of habitats supports a diverse assemblage of organisms including approximately 250 species of fish, 23 species of coral, and 80 species of algae in addition to large sponge communities. Understanding and monitoring these resources is critical to both sanctuary inventory and management activities. Monitoring of the biological communities has taken place at FGBNMS since the 1970s. This work has focused primarily on monitoring the benthos with video transects and photostations documenting transitions between coral, algae and sponge communities over time. Until relatively recently, little has been done to monitor or characterize the reef fish community. In 1994 the Reef Environmental Education Foundation (REEF) began surveys of the Sanctuary and utilized a combination of REEF personnel, volunteers, and Sanctuary staff to visually census reef fish populations via roving diver surveys. These surveys have been invaluable in terms of species list development and understanding the ranges of these species. Subsequently, a stationary point-count survey technique was utilized to begin to quantify community metrics such as species abundance and trophic structure at selected locations. These data provide an important starting point for characterizing the fish community; however, they are limited in scope of inference to small portions of the Sanctuary coral cap environment and are therefore difficult to utilize in developing population estimates at the scale of the Sanctuary.
||NOAA's Ocean Service, National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS)
|Data (Online Linkage):
||National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA)/National Ocean Service (NOS)/National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS)/Center for Coastal Monitoring and Assessment (CCMA)/Biogeography Branch