Research results Musandam coral reef expedition 2012
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Research results Musandam coral reef expedition 2012

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From our SCUBA diving volunteer opportunity & conservation holiday on the coral reefs of the Musandam peninsula, Oman (http://www.biosphere-expeditions.org/musandan). Expedition blogs at......

From our SCUBA diving volunteer opportunity & conservation holiday on the coral reefs of the Musandam peninsula, Oman (http://www.biosphere-expeditions.org/musandan). Expedition blogs at http://biosphereexpeditions.wordpress.com/, http://www.facebook.com/biosphere.expeditions1, https://plus.google.com/103347005009999707934/posts.

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  • In addition to their importance to biodiversity, reefs also provide an estimated 4.3 billion € in goods and services annually, directly supporting tens of millions of people living in developing countries that border coral reefs. In general reefs provide these local populations with food, coastal protection, building materials, medicines, and economic value from tourism and fisheries
  • Coral reefs are under threat from the anthropogenic impacts of overfishing, pollution, coastal development, destructive tourism activities, and climate change
  • Due to the thermal sensitivity of reef-building corals, recent climate change models have predicted an increase in the frequency and severity of mass coral bleaching events as a reaction to the rise of ocean. As a consequence it is expected that there will be an increase in coral mortality and phase-shifts in the ecosystem structure, where reef habitats dominated by corals are replaced by competitively dominant algae. These phase-shifts produce a cascade of effects, such as a decline in coral recruitment as well as decay on other species that are dependent on corals, which lead to a degradation of reefs.
  • The Gulf is a shallow subtropical sea, connected to the Gulf of Oman and the wider Indian Ocean through the narrow Straits of Hormuz. The Gulfs shallow nature, restricted water exchange and high latitude position makes the Gulf’s marine climate one of the most extreme endured by coral ecosystems globally
  • The Gulf also has significant seasonal insolation fluctuations and in some areas is a hyper-saline environment year round with salinities regularly >45 ppt.
  • The Persian Gulf is bordered to the west by the Gulf of Oman, part of the Arabian Sea and the Indian Ocean. The Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman are biogeographically connected with one another through the Strait of Hormuz, in the Musandam peninsula, and although both share close taxonomic affinities, each represents very different environmental conditions The Persian Gulf reefs are exposed to the highest temperature (>35ºC) and salinity (>45 ups) known for reefs worldwide, making it an ideal natural laboratory for the study of the effects of herbivory in extreme conditions. The Persian Gulf is biogeographically connected with the adjacent Gulf of Oman, where conditions are much more benign, providing a useful comparative opportunity to understand the implications that warming temperatures may have on ecological processes on coral reefs.

Transcript

  • 1. Biosphere ExpeditionReef Check – Musandam 2012
  • 2. Introduction – Coral reefs • Occupy less than 0.1% of the marine environment • Home to 25% of all marine biodiversity Photo by MacGillivray Freeman Films • Provide an estimated 4.3 billion € in goods and services annually
  • 3. Coral reefs – anthropogenicimpacts Photo by G. Hodgson Photo by G. Hodgson
  • 4. Coral reefs - thermal sensitivity Phase-shiftsHoegh-Guldberg (2005) Degradation Decline in coral recruitment of reefs Decay in species abundance
  • 5. Arabian Peninsula • Average temperature fluctuations: < 12ºC to > 36º C
  • 6. Arabian Peninsula • Hyper-saline environment year round (can reach >45 psu) • High seasonal fluctuations
  • 7. Arabian Peninsula Persian Gulf Gulf of Oman • Depth to 200 m (coastal shelf) • Temperature 22 - 31ºC • Salinity 34 – 36 psu
  • 8. Musandam Reef Check 2012 The scientific team
  • 9. Musandam Reef Check 2012 The scientific team
  • 10. Musandam Reef Check 2012 SUBSTRATE Mean Plot of HC grouped by Year 65 60 Significant increase in HC 55 coverage from 2009 to 2012Mean % cover of HC 50 45 F(3,136)=7.312 , p<.005 40 35 30 25 Mean 2009 2010 2011 2012 Mean±SE Musandam
  • 11. Musandam Reef Check 2012 SUBSTRATE Mean Plot of SC grouped by Year 1.2 Significant increase in SC 1.0 coverage in 2012 0.8 F(3,136)= 4.772 , p<.005Mean % cover of SC 0.6 0.4 0.2 0.0 Mean 2009 2010 2011 2012 Mean±SE Musandam
  • 12. Musandam Reef Check 2012 SUBSTRATE Mean Plot of RB grouped by Year 26 24 22 Significant decrease in RB 20 coverage from 2009 to 2012 18Mean % cover of RB 16 F(3,136)= 10.435 , p<.001 14 12 10 8 6 4 Mean 2009 2010 2011 2012 Mean±SE Musandam
  • 13. Musandam Reef Check 2012 FISH Mean Plot of Butterflyfish m2 grouped by Year 0.15 0.14 Significant decrease in the 0.13 mean number of butterflyfishMean number of butterflyfish per m2 0.12 0.11 from 2010 to 2012 0.10 F(3,136)= 4.556 , p<.005 0.09 0.08 0.07 0.06 0.05 Mean 2009 2010 2011 2012 Mean±SE Musandam
  • 14. Musandam Reef Check 2012 – Faqadar Bay FISH Mean Plot of Snapper m2 grouped by Year 1.4 1.2 Significant increase in the 1.0 mean number of snappersMean number of snappers per m2 0.8 from 2009 and 2010 to 2012 0.6 F(3,20)= 7.914, p<.005 0.4 0.2 0.0 -0.2 Mean 2009 2010 2011 2012 Mean±SE Faqadar Bay
  • 15. Musandam Reef Check 2012 – Khayl Island FISH Mean Plot of Grouper m2 grouped by Year 0.026 0.024 0.022 Significant decrease in the 0.020 Mean number of groupers per m2 0.018 mean number of groupers 0.016 0.014 from 2009 and 2010 to 2012 0.012 F(3,28)= 5.110 , p<.05 0.010 0.008 0.006 0.004 0.002 0.000 -0.002 Mean 2009 2010 2011 2012 Mean±SE Khayl Island
  • 16. Musandam Reef Check 2012 – Eagle Bay FISH Mean Plot of Butterflyfish m2 grouped by Year 0.22 0.20 0.18 Significant decrease in the Mean number of butterflyfish per m2 0.16 mean number of butterflyfish 0.14 from 2009 and 2010 to 2012 0.12 F(3,28)= 7.6192 , p<.005 0.10 0.08 0.06 0.04 0.02 Mean 2009 2010 2011 2012 Mean±SE Eagle Bay
  • 17. Musandam Reef Check 2012 – Ra’sShuraytar FISH Mean Plot of Butterflyfish m2 grouped by Year 0.14 0.12 Significant increase in theMean number of butterflyfish per m2 0.10 mean number of butterflyfish 0.08 from 2009 and 2010 to 2012 F(3,24)= 5.239 , p<.05 0.06 0.04 0.02 0.00 Mean 2009 2010 2011 2012 Mean±SE Ras Shuraytar
  • 18. Musandam Reef Check 2012 INVERTEBRATES Mean Plot of Pencil urchin m2 grouped by Year 0.07 Significant decrease in the 0.06 mean number of pencil Mean number of pencil urchins per m2 0.05 urchins from 2010 to 2012 0.04 F(3,140)= 3.519 , p<.05 0.03 0.02 0.01 0.00 Mean 2009 2010 2011 2012 Mean±SE Musandam
  • 19. Musandam Reef Check 2012 – Faqadar Bay INVERTEBRATES Mean Plot of Diadema urchin m2 grouped by Year 1.2 1.1 Significant increase in the 1.0 mean number of diadema Mean number of diademas per m2 0.9 0.8 from 2009 to 2012 0.7 F(3,24)= 3.649 , p<.05 0.6 0.5 0.4 0.3 0.2 Mean 2009 2010 2011 2012 Mean±SE Faqadar Bay
  • 20. Musandam Reef Check 2012 – Eagle Bay INVERTEBRATES Mean Plot of Pencil urchin m2 grouped by Year 0.18 0.16 Significant decrease in the 0.14 mean number of pencil Mean number of pencil urchins per m2 0.12 urchins from 2010 to 2012 0.10 F(3,28)= 4.358 , p<.05 0.08 0.06 0.04 0.02 0.00 -0.02 Mean 2009 2010 2011 2012 Mean±SE Eagle Bay
  • 21. Musandam Reef Check 2012 – Summary Substrate :  Increase in mean percentage cover of HC  Increase in mean percentage cover of SC  Decrease in mean percentage cover of RB Fish : x Decrease in the mean number of butterflyfish per m2 Invertebrates : x Decrease in the mean number of pencil urchins per m2
  • 22. Musandam Reef Check 2012 THANK YOU!