The Biology of Coral Reefs

The Biology of Coral Reefs

by Charles R.C. Sheppard, Charles R. C. Sheppard, Simon Davy, Graham M. Pilling
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

ISBN-10: 0198566352

ISBN-13: 9780198566359

Pub. Date: 10/04/2009

Publisher: Oxford University Press

Coral reefs represent the most spectacular and diverse marine ecosystem on the planet as well as a critical source of income for millions of people. However, the combined effects of human activity have led to a rapid decline in the health of reefs worldwide, with many now facing complete destruction.

This timely book provides an integrated overview of the

Overview

Coral reefs represent the most spectacular and diverse marine ecosystem on the planet as well as a critical source of income for millions of people. However, the combined effects of human activity have led to a rapid decline in the health of reefs worldwide, with many now facing complete destruction.

This timely book provides an integrated overview of the function, physiology, ecology, and behaviour of coral reef organisms. Each chapter is enriched with a selection of 'boxes' on specific aspects written by internationally recognised experts. As with other books in the Biology of Habitats Series, the emphasis in this book is on the organisms that dominate this marine environment although pollution, conservation, climate change, and experimental aspects are also included. Indeed, particular emphasis is placed on conservation and management due to the habitat's critically endangered status. A global range of examples is employed which gives the book international relevance.

This accessible text is intended for students, naturalists, and professionals and assumes no previous knowledge of coral reef biology. It is particularly suitable for both senior undergraduate and graduate students (in departments of biology, geography, and environmental science) taking courses in coral reef ecology, marine biology, oceanography, and conservation biology, as welt as the many professional ecologists and conservation biologists requiring a concise overview of the topic. It will also be of relevance and use to reef managers, recreational divers, and amateur naturalists.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780198566359
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
Publication date:
10/04/2009
Series:
Biology of Habitats Series
Pages:
352
Product dimensions:
6.20(w) x 9.30(h) x 0.90(d)

Table of Contents

Abbreviations ix

List of Boxes xi

1 Coral Reefs - Biodiverse and Productive Tropical Ecosystems 1

1.1 Introduction 1

1.2 Areas and distributions of reefs 10

1.3 Biodiversity on coral reefs 13

1.4 Coral communities and reef growth 17

1.5 Types of reefs 20

1.6 Profiles and zones of reefs 24

1.7 Biodiversity on reef slopes 30

1.8 Values of reefs to people 32

2 The Main Reef Builders and Space Occupiers 33

2.1 Corals 36

2.2 Soft corals and sea fans 47

2.3 Sponges 50

2.4 Other animal species 55

2.5 Macroalgae 57

2.6 Seagrasses and mangroves 59

2.7 Rates of coral growth, rates of reef growth 62

2.8 Soft substrates 65

3 The Abiotic Environment 66

3.1 Controls on coral distribution 66

3.2 Salinity 66

3.3 Temperature 71

3.4 Light 76

3.5 Nutrients 79

3.6 Exposure and other hydrodynamic factors 84

3.7 Sediment 87

3.8 Seawater carbonate chemistry 91

4 Symbiotic Interactions 98

4.1 What is symbiosis? 98

4.2 Algal-invertebrate symbioses in corals and soft corals 98

4.3 Diversity of zooxanthellae 101

4.4 Physiology of coral calcification 104

4.5 Photosynthesis and carbon fluxes 106

4.6 Nitrogen acquisition and fluxes 113

4.7 Phosphorus 116

4.8 Symbiosis establishment and stability 117

4.9 Coral-microbial associations 122

4.10 Sponge symbioses with non-photosynthetic bacteria, cyanobacteria, and algae 125

4.11 'Macro'or iconic symbioses e.g. fish and sea anemones, shrimps, and fish 127

5 Microbial, Microalgal, and Planktonic Reef Life 130

5.1 Microbial reef life 130

5.2 Trophic links 146

5.3 Zooplankton behaviour and ecology 154

6 Reef Fishes: Diversity, Feeding, and Food Chains 161

6.1 Geographical influences on diversity 162

6.2 Reef fish: colourful for a reason 164

6.3 Trophic ecology of coral reef fish 168

6.4 The coral reef food chain 182

6.5 Impacts on the food chain 184

7 Reef Fisheries and Reef Aquaculture 192

7.1 Fisheries resources on reefs 193

7.2 Practical issues with reef fishes 203

7.3 Live reef fish trade 206

7.4 Aquaculture on reefs 210

7.5 Impacts of fishing 211

7.6 Approaches to managing coral reef fisheries 215

7.7 Controlling coral reef fisheries 218

7.8 Future for reef fisheries 220

8 Coral Reefs in the Modern World 223

8.1 Damaging impacts on reefs 224

8.2 Other physical impacts 231

8.3 Coral diseases 234

8.4 Diseases of other reef organisms 237

8.5 Climate change 239

8.6 Acidification 247

8.7 Sea level rise 249

8.8 Cyclones, hurricanes, typhoons 250

8.9 Synergies, stasis, and feedbacks 253

9 Consequences to Reefs of Changing Environmental Stress 255

9.1 Ecological consequences of environmental impacts 255

9.2 Changes to the main architectural species 259

9.3 Changes on Indo-Pacific reefs 265

9.4 Sizes of the coral 'reservoir' 274

9.5 Changing food chains and trophic balances 275

10 The Future, Human Population, and Management 278

10.1 The time scale available 279

10.2 The elephant in the room 282

10.3 Protected areas and coral reefs 285

10.4 Environmental assessments 288

10.5 Costs, prices, and values 290

10.6 The 'slippery slope to slime' 293

10.7 The future for reefs 293

Bibliography 301

Index 333

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >