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Patterns in fish response to seagrass bed loss at the southern Ryukyu Islands, Japan
Nakamura, Y. (2010). Patterns in fish response to seagrass bed loss at the southern Ryukyu Islands, Japan. Mar. Biol. (Berl.) 157(11): 2397-2406. hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s00227-010-1504-7
In: Marine Biology. Springer: Heidelberg; Berlin. ISSN 0025-3162, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Keyword
    Marine

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  • Nakamura, Y.

Abstract
    An extensive seagrass bed on a fringing coral reef at Amitori Bay (southern Ryukyu Islands) disappeared completely in 2009 after a typhoon. Seagrass bed loss had a significant negative influence on not only seagrass bed residents but also commercially important coral reef fishes that utilize seagrass beds as nurseries or feeding grounds. With seagrass bed loss, mean species’ richness and densities of overall seagrass bed fishes per transect decreased by more than 75 and 85%, respectively. Most of the affected fishes were benthivores, piscivores, detritivores, and herbivores. Of 21 dominant species, 13 disappeared completely and 4 showed severe reductions in densities following seagrass bed loss, whereas the densities of 4 bottom-dwelling gobies did not change significantly. Thus, this study demonstrated that most seagrass bed fishes lack the ability to adapt to seagrass habitat loss, suggesting that increasing global seagrass loss will cause serious reductions in seagrass-associated fishes and fishery resources.

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