Validation of a technique for reconstructing daily patterns in the recruitment of coral reef damselfish
- School of Australian Environmental Studies, Griffith University, 4111, Nathan, Queensland, Australia
Counting growth increments in otoliths recently has become an accepted method of ageing tropical fishes, however, verification is essential for each new species. In this study, growth increments in otoliths of the juveniles of several coral reef damselfishes (Pomacentridae) were deposited daily and a distinct transition from wide to narrow increments coincided with settlement from the pelagic larval phase into the demersal habitat. Thus, the data of settlement for each individual fish could be calculated with acceptable accuracy. The daily pattern of recruitment to a coral reef was successfully reconstructed using the otoliths from a large sample of juvenile fish collected at the end of the breeding season. This was because the original pattern of settlement was preserved in the age distribution for at least 4 to 5 months. This application of otolith ageing techniques may be extended to reveal the temporal patterns of recruitment to many localities encompassing spatial scales larger than would be logistically possible using visual censuses.
- 1 - sciences appliquees, technologies et medecines
- 2 - sciences biologiques et medicales
- 3 - sciences biologiques fondamentales et appliquees. psychologie
- 4 - psychologie. psychophysiologie