Project Summary For some endangered coral species like staghorn and elkhorn coral, restoring populations with colonies grown in nurseries may be the best hope for their recovery. Several threats may still limit recovery of these species, however. On many reefs in The Bahamas, elkhorn and staghorn coral populations may not recover due to a species of snail, [...]
Project Summary Corals live within a limited temperature range. As such, they are extremely vulnerable to changes in temperature. During the heat of late summer, sea temperatures that warm even a fraction of a degree above normal temperatures can cause corals to lose the symbiotic single cell algae that live within their tissues providing them with [...]
Project Summary While we know that tropical marine ecosystems support fisheries, recreational opportunities, attract tourists and provide other ecosystem services, what are these ecosystem services worth? How does the health of an ecosystem affect the value of these services? Can the creation of a marine protected area change its value? How does the management of a protected area affect [...]
Project Summary Nassau grouper form large spawning aggregations where thousands of fish come together to spawn annually. While adult Nassau grouper typically rarely move more than a few hundred meters to feed and find shelter, they migrate hundreds of kilometers to spawning sites. Through this project we will understand how adult migrations link home ranges and spawning sites throughout The Bahamas. For [...]
Project Summary The Bahamas has some of the largest remaining populations of endangered Nassau grouper. However, these populations are in decline. In partnership with the Bahamian PhD candidate Krista Sherman, we are unlocking the mysteries of Nassau grouper populations in The Bahamas using advanced genetic techniques. This research is aimed at determining how Nassau grouper from different [...]
From 2011 to 2013, the Atlantis Blue Project Foundation (ABPF) supported the assessment of a total of 214 reefs throughout The Bahamas, including sites on Cay Sal Bank, Andros, the Southern Bahamas, New Providence and Rose Island, the Little Bahama Bank and partial surveys in the Exuma Cays and Berry Islands. Access our Coral Reef Report Card 2016 to learn more.
In 2008, the Atlantis Blue Project Foundation (ABPF) supported the first comprehensive baseline survey of 21 coral reefs around New Providence and Rose Island, Bahamas. Access our Coral Reef Report Card 2014 to learn more.
Nassau grouper migration patterns during full moon suggest collapsed historic fish spawning aggregation and evidence of an undocumented aggregation
Many fish species migrate to form fish spawning aggregations. The temporal and spatial predictability of these migrations and spawning aggregation locations makes species vulnerable to overfishing, as the majority of an adult population within a large region may be harvested quickly with minimal effort.
Integrating population biology into conservation management for endangered Nassau grouper Epinephelus striatus
Groupers are a phylogenetically diverse group and include many ecologically and economically valuable predatory marine fishes that have experienced drastic population declines. Reproduction via spawning aggregations increases the vulnerability of grouper species such as Nassau grouper Epinephelus striatus to overfishing, and this is likely to be a major contributing factor to population declines.