Fragment generation, survival, and attachment of Dictyota spp. at Conch Reef in the Florida Keys, USA
Abbreviated Journal Title
asexual reproduction; vegetative fragmentation; nacroalgae; herbivory; epiphyte; Halimeda; CORAL-REEFS; SECONDARY METABOLITES; MARINE EPIBIOSIS; ALGA; HERBIVORY; HALIMEDA; PARROTFISHES; SURVIVORSHIP; POPULATIONS; MACROPHYTES; Marine & Freshwater Biology
During the past decade, the relative abundance of the brown macroalgae Dictyota spp. has been high in the Florida Keys. Recent studies have shown that members of this genus successfully reproduce via vegetative fragmentation. To investigate the importance of fragmentation on the reef community, this study examined: (1) the degree of epiphytism on benthic organisms, (2) the rate of fragment production through fish foraging activities, (3) the likelihood of fragment entanglement, and (4) the fragment attachment and success rate. It was found that reef fish contributed substantially to the fragment pool; furthermore, most fish-produced fragments produced rhizoids and attached to sand grains within 24 h in the field. Fragments of Dictyota spp. most commonly became entangled around and then attached themselves to the green alga Halimeda tuna, and other Dictyota spp. These results suggest that vegetative fragmentation of Dictyota spp. plays an important role in the changing community structure on the Florida Keys reef tract.
"Fragment generation, survival, and attachment of Dictyota spp. at Conch Reef in the Florida Keys, USA" (2006). Faculty Bibliography 2000s. 6217.