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Variability in mesophotic coral reef communities along the Great Barrier Reef, Australia

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dc.contributor Australian Institute Of Marine Science
dc.contributor Univ Sydney
dc.contributor James Cook Univ
dc.contributor James Cook University
dc.contributor Sch Earth & Environm Sci
dc.contributor Australian Ctr Field Robot
dc.contributor University Of Sydney
dc.contributor Sch Geosci
dc.contributor Australian Inst Marine Sci
dc.contributor Australian Institute Of Marine Science (aims) en WEBSTER, JODY M. BRIDGE, THOMAS C. L. DONE, TERENCE J. FRIEDMAN, ARIELL BEAMAN, ROBIN J. WILLIAMS, STEFAN B. PIZARRO, OSCAR 2017-03-21T01:21:02Z 2013-02-28T06:52:56Z 2013-02-28T06:52:56Z 2020-07-20T00:44:04Z 2017-03-21T01:21:02Z 2017-03-21T01:21:02Z 2013-02-28T06:52:56Z 2020-07-20T00:44:04Z 2011-01-01
dc.identifier 8832 en
dc.identifier.citation Bridge TCL, Done TJ, Friedman A, Beaman RJ, Williams SB, Pizarro O and Webster JM (2011) Variability in mesophotic coral reef communities along the Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Marine Ecology Progress Series. 428: 63-75. en
dc.identifier.issn 0171-8630
dc.description Link to abstract/full text - en
dc.description.abstract The composition of sessile benthic megafauna communities on mesophotic coral reefs (50 to 65 m depth) was investigated at 3 sites (Noggin Pass, Viper Reef and Hydrographers Passage) over 500 km of the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) shelf-edge, Australia. High-resolution stereo imagery was collected in 4 separate autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) surveys and used to characterise the substratum and megafauna at each site (2 surveys from Viper Reef, and one from each of Noggin Pass and Hydrographers Passage). Random sampling of 100 images from a 100 x 100 m area at each site indicated that non-reef habitats predominated and that megafauna were largely confined to reef habitats, while a more detailed investigation of these reef substrata revealed diverse benthic megafaunal communities that varied significantly both within and between study sites. There were consistent patterns in the functional ecological groups occupying particular finer-scale habitat types, with phototrophic taxa dominating the flatter tops of submerged reefs and heterotrophic suspension-feeders occupying steeper habitats. Slope angle, water clarity and productivity best explained the distribution of megafauna on reef habitats. Reduced photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) likely excludes most phototrophic taxa from steeper slopes. These results suggest that the extensive submerged reefs on the outer-shelf of the GBR harbour diverse mesophotic reef communities. Given these results, GBR mesophotic coral ecosystems deserve further study, not only of their benthic megafauna but also their fish and mobile invertebrate communities.
dc.description.sponsorship We thank the captain and crew of the RV 'Southern Surveyor' for their outstanding work on the cruise. The project was funded by the Australian Marine National Facility, the Integrated Marine Observing System, the National Geographic Society, the Natural Environment Research Council, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority's Science for Management Awards, and the School of Earth and Environmental Science, James Cook University. We gratefully acknowledge the assistance of A. Edwards with regard to preparing figures. R. B. acknowledges a Queensland Smart Futures Fellowship for salary support. We also thank K. Fabricius and C. Battershill at the Australian Institute of Marine Science and C. Wallace and P. Muir at the Queensland Museum for assistance with taxonomy. S. Smithers, A. Stypel, A. Brazenor, S. Hansen and M. Kramer are thanked for their valuable assistance, as are 3 anonymous reviewers for their helpful comments, which significantly improved the manuscript.
dc.description.uri en
dc.language English
dc.language en en
dc.relation.ispartof Null
dc.relation.ispartof Marine Ecology Progress Series - pages: 428: 63-75 en
dc.subject Autonomous Underwater Vehicle
dc.subject Ecology
dc.subject Slope
dc.subject Growth
dc.subject Environmental Sciences & Ecology
dc.subject Marshall-islands
dc.subject Auv
dc.subject Enewetak Atoll
dc.subject Zonation
dc.subject Marine & Freshwater Biology
dc.subject Oceanography
dc.subject Shelf Edge
dc.subject Octocoral
dc.subject Coral
dc.subject Community Composition
dc.subject Mesophotic
dc.subject Geology
dc.subject Great Barrier Reef
dc.subject Habitat
dc.title Variability in mesophotic coral reef communities along the Great Barrier Reef, Australia
dc.type journal article en
dc.identifier.doi 10.3354/meps09046
dc.identifier.wos WOS:000290248800005

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