Scientia Marina, Vol 80, No 3 (2016)

A quantitative assessment of the cryptobenthic fish assemblage at deep littoral cliffs in the Mediterranean


https://doi.org/10.3989/scimar.04307.23A

Igor Glavičić
Department of Marine Studies, University of Split, Croatia

Dejan Paliska
MEDIFAS-Mediterranean Institute for Advance Studies, Slovenia

Alen Soldo
Department of Marine Studies, University of Split, Croatia

Marcelo Kovačić
Natural History Museum Rijeka, Croatia

Abstract


The present study provides the first quantitative assessment of cryptobenthic fish species diversity and abundance on hard bottoms below 20 m depth by examining Mediterranean underwater reefs with deep vertical cliffs. Quantitative sampling was performed at depths down to about 45 m and yielded 220 cryptobenthic and 61 epibenthic individuals belonging to 21 species, showing that the cryptobenthic fishes highly outnumbered the epibenthic individuals. The study highlights the high diversity and abundance of this unexplored part of the benthic fish community. The cryptobenthic fish assemblage was dominated by the family Gobiidae in terms of both biodiversity ( > 60% of all species) and abundance ( > 90% of all specimens). Fish species previously considered rare were present and some of them were even numerous in this assemblage. Three out of fourteen recorded habitat variables (depth, rocky cliff surface area vs. the bottom of the cliff area, and the presence of sand as the bottom substrate) were identified as significant for species occurrence. Species were generalist in their choice of shelters since the size and quantity of semi-caves, caves, cavities and even bio-cover type had no significant influence on the species distribution and abundance.

Keywords


cryptobenthic fishes; multivariate analysis; benthos; littoral zone; underwater cliffs; scuba diving

Full Text:


HTML PDF XML

References


Ackerman J.L., Bellwood D.R. 2000. Reef fish assemblages: a re-evaluation using enclosed rotenone stations. Mar. Ecol. Progr. Ser. 206: 227-237. http://dx.doi.org/10.3354/meps206227

Ackerman J.L., Bellwood D.R. 2002. Comparative efficiency of clove oil and rotenone for sampling tropical reef fish assemblages. J. Fish Biol. 60: 893-901. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1095-8649.2002.tb02416.x

Ahnelt H., Kovacic M. 1997. A northern Adriatic population of Thorogobius macrolepis (Gobiidae). Cybium 21: 149-162.

Bakran-Petricioli T. 2007. Marine habitats: Manual for inventory, mapping and monitoring (in Croatian). Dr?avni zavod za za?titu prirode, Zagreb, Croatia, 56 pp.

Bakran-Petricioli T. 2011. Manual for determination of marine habitats in Croatia according to EU Habitat Directive (in Croatian). Dr?avni zavod za za?titu prirode, Zagreb, Croatia, 184 pp.

Ballesteros E. 2006. Mediterranean coralligenous assemblages: a synthesis of present knowledge. Oceanogr. Mar. Biol. Annu. Rev. 44: 123-195. http://dx.doi.org/10.1201/9781420006391.ch4

Beldade R., Erzini K., Gonçalves E.J. 2006. Composition and temporal dynamics of a temperature rocky cryptobenthic fish assemblage. J. Mar. Biol. Ass. UK 86: 1221-1228. http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0025315406014226

Beldade R., Gonçalves E.J. 2007. An interference visual census technique applied to cryptobenthic fish assemblages. Vie Milieu 57: 61-65.

Boudouresque C.F., Ruitton S., Verlaque M. 2003. Anthropogenic impacts on marine vegetation in the Mediterranean. In: Proceeding of the Second Mediterranean Symposium on marine vegetation (Athens, 12-13 December 2003). Regional Activity Centre for Specially Protected Areas, Tunis, pp. 34-54.

Brokovich E., Einbinder S., Shashar N., et al. 2008. Descending to the twilight-zone: changes in coral reef fish assemblages along a depth gradient down to 65 m. Mar. Ecol. Progr. Ser. 371: 253-262. http://dx.doi.org/10.3354/meps07591

Bussotti S., Guidetti P. 2009. Do Mediterranean fish assemblages associated with marine caves and rocky cliffs differ? Est. Coast Shelf Sci. 81: 65-73. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ecss.2008.09.023

Depczynski M., Bellwood D.R. 2003. The role of cryptobenthic reef fishes in coral reef trophodynamics. Mar. Ecol. Progr. Ser. 256: 183-191. http://dx.doi.org/10.3354/meps256183

Depczynski M., Bellwood D.R. 2004. Microhabitat utilisation patterns in cryptobenthic coral reef fish communities. Mar. Biol. 145: 455-463. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00227-004-1342-6

Feitoza B.M., Rosa R.S., Rocha L.A. 2005. Ecology and zoogeography of deep-reef fishes in northeastern Brazil. Bull. Mar. Sci. 76: 725-742.

Fesser R. 1980. Zusätzliche Beschreibung von Speleogobius trigloides Zander und Jelinek (1976) (Gobiidae, Perciformes), sowie neue Fundorte und Freilandbeobachtungen. Verh. Zool.- Bot. Ges. Wien 118/119: 123-126.

Francour P. 2008. First records of Didogobius splechtnai along the French Mediterranean coast and additional comments about D. schlieweni. AIeP 38: 139-141. http://dx.doi.org/10.3750/aip2008.38.2.09

Francour P., Mangialajo L. 2007. Gobius kolombatovici, a common species of Gobiidae in the north-western Mediterranean Sea? Cybium 31: 389-390.

Gauch H.G. 1982. Multivariate Analysis in Community Ecology. Cambridge Univ. Press, Cambridge, UK, 298 pp. http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511623332

Glavicic I., Kovacic M. 2016. A quantitative sampling method for assessment of deep cryptobenthic ichthyofauna using trimix diving. AIeP 46: 43-47.

Harmelin J-G. 1987. Structure et variabilité de l'ichtyofaune d'une zone rocheuse protégé en Méditerraneé (par national de Port- Cros, France). PSZNI: Mar. Ecol. 8: 263-284. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1439-0485.1987.tb00188.x

Harmelin-Vivien M.L., Francour P. 1992. Trawling or visual censuses? Methodological bias in the assessment of fish populations in seagrass beds. PSZNI: Mar. Ecol. 13: 41-51. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1439-0485.1992.tb00338.x

Hofrichter R., Patzner R.A. 2000. Habitat and microhabitat of Mediterranean clingfishes (Teleostei: Gobiesociformes: Gobiesocidae). PSZN: Mar. Ecol. 21: 41-53. http://dx.doi.org/10.1046/j.1439-0485.2000.00689.x

Jardas I. 1996. Adriatic Ichthyofauna (in Croatian). ?kolska knjiga, Zagreb, Croatia, 533 pp.

Kovacic M. 2008. Live colouration, morphology and habitat of Vanneaugobius dollfusi (Gobiidae) in the northern Adriatic Sea. J. Fish Biol. 73: 1019-1023. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1095-8649.2008.01918.x

Kovacic M., Miller P.J. 2000. A new species of Gobius (Teleostei: Gobiidae) from the northern Adriatic Sea. Cybium 24: 231-239.

Kovacic M., Patzner R.A., Schliewen U.K. 2012. A first quantitative assessment of the ecology of cryptobenthic fishes in the Mediterranean Sea. Mar. Biol. 159: 2731-2742. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00227-012-2030-6

Kovtun A.O., Manilo L.G. 2013. Mediterranean fish Gammogobius steinitzi Bath, 1971 (Actinopterygii: Perciformes: Gobiidae) - A new representative of the Black Sea ichthyofauna. AIeP 43: 307-314. http://dx.doi.org/10.3750/aip2013.43.4.08

La Mesa G., Micalizzi M., Giaccone G., et al. 2004. Cryptobenthic fishes of the "Ciclopi Islands" marine reserve (central Mediterranean Sea): assemblage composition, structure and relations with habitat features. Mar. Biol. 145: 233-242. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00227-004-1315-9

La Mesa G., Di Mucchiuo S., Vacchi M. 2006. Structure of a Mediterranean cryptobenthic fish community and its relationships with habitat characteristics. Mar. Biol. 149: 149-167. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00227-005-0194-z

Lipej L., Orlando Bonaca M., ?i?ko M. 2003. Costal fish diversity in three marine protected areas in the gulf of Trieste (Northern Adriatic). Mar. Ecol. 24: 259-273. http://dx.doi.org/10.1046/j.1439-0485.2003.00843.x

Miller P.J. 1986. Gobiidae. In: Whitehead P.J.P., Bauchot M.L., et al. (eds), Fishes of the North-eastern Atlantic and the Mediterranean 3. UNESCO, Paris, pp. 1019-1085.

Patzner R.A. 1999. Habitat utilization and depth distribution of small cryptobenthic fishes (Blenniidae, Gobiesocidae, Gobiidae, Tripterygiidae) in Ibiza (western Mediterranean Sea). Environ. Biol. Fish. 55: 207-214. http://dx.doi.org/10.1023/A:1007535808710

Prochazka K. 1998. Spatial and trophic partitioning in cryptic fish communities of shallow subtidal reefs in False Bay, South Africa. Environ. Biol. Fish. 51: 201-220. http://dx.doi.org/10.1023/A:1007407200708

Pyle R.L., Earle J.L., Greene B.D. 2008. Five new species of the damselfish genus Chromis (Perciformes: Labroidei: Pomacentridae) from deep coral reefs in the tropical western Pacific. Zootaxa 1671: 3-31.

Smith-Vaniz W.F., Jelks H.L., Rocha L.A. 2006. Relevance of cryptic fishes in the biodiversity assessments: A case study at Buck Island Reef National Monument, St. Croix. Bull. Mar. Sci. 79: 17-48.

Soldo A., Glavicic I. 2013. Fish communities and their depth distribution at vertical corraligen reefs in the Adriatic. Rapp. Commis. Inter. Mer Medit. 40: 776.

Ter Braak C.J.F., Verdonschot P.F.M. 1995. Canonical correspondence analysis and related multivariate methods in aquatic ecology. Aquatic Sci. 57: 255-289. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/BF00877430

Ter Braak C.J.F., Smilauer P. 1998. Reference Manual and User's Guide to Canoco for Windows: Software for Canonical Community Ordination (Version 4). Microcomputer Power, Ithaca, New York, USA, 352 pp.

Willis T.J. 2001. Visual census methods underestimate density and diversity of cryptic reef fishes. J. Fish Biol. 59: 1408-1411. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1095-8649.2001.tb00202.x




Copyright (c) 2016 Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC)

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.


Contact us scimar@icm.csic.es

Technical support soporte.tecnico.revistas@csic.es