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    Coral population demographics and community dynamics

Coral population demographics and community dynamics

coral and eel

Principal Investigators

Research duration
Lead institutions
University of California, Santa Barbara


NSF Mcr230

Coral population and therefore community dynamics are driven in part by disturbance. Moorea recently sustained two major disturbances, an outbreak of Acanthaster starfish (2006-2010) and Cyclone Oli (2010). My project is quantifying the recovery of coral populations around Moorea as part of the MCR LTER research. Since 2011, we have followed the growth and survival of >8000 colonies of Pocillopora, Acropora, and Porites coral on the fore reef and lagoons of the island. The data are being used to generate population dynamic models that will help identify what process enhance or impede recovery of the reef. Data will be used to project trajectories of recovery into the future, as predictions that can be tested through my sampling and that carried out by others.