Ecology, Environment and Conservation Paper

Special Issue-2014; Page No.(33-43)

ASSESSMENT ON THE CORAL AND REEF FISH COMMUNITIES IN TICAO ISLAND, MASBATE

Clarissa Reboton and Analie Candido

Abstract

The condition of coral and reef fish communities in Barangay Famosa, Ticao Island, Masbate was investigated using the line intercept-transect and the standard fish visual census methods, respectively. The extent of the reef was determined using the Global Positioning System, and coral and reef fish species were identified. The 100-ha patchy reef recorded 161 hard coral species, supporting 69 species of reef fish, 24 of which were target species. Station 1 recorded the highest number of coral species (108) and diversity (2.8929). But in terms of hard coral cover, only Station 3 was fair (30.07%), but with the least number of species (68) and the highest dominance index (0.3097) due to abundance of massive Porites. The other two stations were poor (<15% cover). Despite the low cover, analysis using Manthachitra’s assessment indices revealed very good reef condition in all stations but poor development due to a greater percentage of abiotic-related components. Mortality index was low. Cardinalfishes, damselfishes and catfish accounted for 80% of all fish documented. Station 2 showed to be the most diverse (40 species) but Station 3 was the highest in mean total fish density (355 individuals/500 m2), target fish density (19/500 m2) and biomass (0.30 kg/500 m2). Overall, the site had a very low mean total fish density (217/500 m2) and target fish biomass (0.240 kg/500 m2).

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