IMIS | Flanders Marine Institute

Flanders Marine Institute

Platform for marine research


Publications | Institutes | Persons | Datasets | Projects | Maps
[ report an error in this record ]basket (0): add | show Printer-friendly version

Additive partitioning of coral reef fish diversity across hierarchical spatial scales throughout the Caribbean
Francisco-Ramos, V.; Arias-Gonzalez, J.E. (2013). Additive partitioning of coral reef fish diversity across hierarchical spatial scales throughout the Caribbean. PLoS One 8(10): e78761.
In: PLoS One. Public Library of Science: San Francisco. ISSN 1932-6203, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 


Authors  Top 
  • Francisco-Ramos, V.
  • Arias-Gonzalez, J.E.

    There is an increasing need to examine regional patterns of diversity in coral-reef systems since their biodiversity is declining globally. In this sense, additive partitioning might be useful since it quantifies the contribution of alpha and beta to total diversity across different scales. We applied this approach using an unbalanced design across four hierarchical scales (80 sites, 22 subregions, six ecoregions, and the Caribbean basin). Reef-fish species were compiled from the Reef Environmental Education Foundation (REEF) database and distributions were confirmed with published data. Permutation tests were used to compare observed values to those expected by chance. The primary objective was to identify patterns of reef-fish diversity across multiple spatial scales under different scenarios, examining factors such as fisheries and demographic connectivity. Total diversity at the Caribbean scale was attributed to beta-diversity (nearly 62% of the species), with the highest beta-diversity at the site scale. (alpha) over bar -diversity was higher than expected by chance in all scenarios and at all studied scales. This suggests that fish assemblages are more homogenous than expected, particularly at the ecoregion scale. Within each ecoregion, diversity was mainly attributed to alpha, except for the Southern ecoregion where there was a greater difference in species among sites. beta-components were lower than expected in all ecoregions, indicating that fishes within each ecoregion are a subsample of the same species pool. The scenario involving the effects of fisheries showed a shift in dominance for beta-diversity from regions to subregions, with no major changes to the diversity patterns. In contrast, demographic connectivity partially explained the diversity pattern. beta-components were low within connectivity regions and higher than expected by chance when comparing between them. Our results highlight the importance of ecoregions as a spatial scale to conserve local and regional coral reef-fish diversity.

All data in IMIS is subject to the VLIZ privacy policy Top | Authors