Friday, 26 May 2017

Looe Key-Kyle Kenney, Jakob Thayer, Morgan Medus

Looe key’s reef is consistent with a spur and groove formation. Ridges of corals are separated by large sand channels and consistently exposed to high wave energy which makes coral recruitment outside of already inhabited areas tough. This site had the highest biodiversity of corals and fish. It also had the largest amount of structure which provided a large number of niches space for different organisms. The fish on the reef were mostly mature, this suggested that either juveniles seek shelter elsewhere such as in the seagrass meadows or that the fish that reproduce on the reef are not very 

Stoplight Parrotfish at Looe Key
successful. This site was the first to have Acropora palmate (Elkhorn coral). We also saw transplants of Acropora cervicornis that were part of restoration efforts. Unlike other areas, we saw this reef is far enough away from land to be removed from inputs from land. The reduced visibility was due only to wave action causing continued suspended sediments. Looe Key differed from other sites we visited previously in the week. Conch Key was a mangrove island that while some coral was present diversity and population was limited. Coffins Patch and Pillar Patch had increased coral and fish biodiversity compared to the seagrass meadow sites that surrounded Conch Key and made up Old Dan and Old Sweat Banks. Their corals were larger and made more structure. At Looe Key, it was evident that the reef was older and had been building for longer then the patch reefs.

Species list
Fish:
·         Great Barracuda
·         Sergeant Major
French Angelfish at Looe Key

·         Stoplight Parrotfish
·         Black Grouper
·         Mutton Snapper
·         Yellowtail Snapper
·         Bermuda Chub
·         Bar Jack
·         Spanish Hogfish
·         Hogfish
·         Rainbow Parrotfish
·         Four Eyed Butterfly
·         Brown Chromis
·         Midnight Parrotfish
·         Caribbean Reef Shark
Acropora palmata at Looe Key
·         Rock Beauty
·         French Angelfish
·         Yellowtail Damselfish
·         Blue Tang
·         Bicolor Damselfish
·         Beagergory
·         Queen Parrotfish
·         Yellowhead Wrasse
·         Blue Parrotfish
·         Smallmouth Snapper
·         Scrawled Filefish
·         Caesar Grunt
·          Bluestripped Grunt
·         Spotfin Damselfish
·         Nassau Grouper
·         Spotted Eagle Ray
·         Squirrelfish
·         Atlantic Triggerfish
·         Ocean Surgeon
·         Mangrove Snapper
·         Atlantic Spadefish
·         Trumpetfish
·         Black Margate
·         Grey Angelfish
·         Dog Snapper
·         Rock Hind

Invertebrates:
·         Queen Conch
·         Christmas Tree Worm

Algae:
·         Halimeda

Coral:
·         Orbicella annularis
·         Sea Fans
·         Siderastrea sidera
·         Meandrina meandrites
·         Orbicella favelota
·         Montastrea cavernosa
·         Diploria labrinythiformis
·         Porites porites
·         Orbicella franksi
·         Bladed fire coral
·         Acropora palmata
·         Acropora cervicornis
·         Colpophyillia natans
·         Dichocoenia stokesi
·         Sea rod
·         Pseudodiploria strigosa
·         Agaricia

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