Fisheries restrictions and their cascading effects on herbivore abundance and macroalgae removal at Kenyan coral reefs

E.G. Knoester, Veerle Plug, A.J. Murk, S.O. Sande, R. Osinga

Research output: Other contributionPamphlet

Abstract

This study evaluated the influence of fisheries management on the abundance and browsing of herbivorous fish in Kenya. Herbivorous fish biomass was clearly higher in protected areas, especially of large-bodied species such as unicornfishes and certain parrotfishes. The removal of common macroalgae was up to three-fold higher in protected areas and this correlated well with the higher biomasses of unicornfishes and parrotfishes. In unprotected areas, damselfishes and sea urchins dominated and overall browsing pressure was low. This shows that fishing restrictions can support reef resilience by increasing herbivorous fish biomass of key species and thereby promote macroalgae removal.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherWageningen University & Research
Number of pages1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 19 Jun 2023

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