Bioerosión en colonias muertas del coral Orbicella annularis (Scleractinia: Merulinidae) en un arrecife del Parque Nacional Morrocoy, estado Falcón, Venezuela

Patricia Elena Manuitt Brito, Estrella Villamizar, Héctor Guzmán

Resumen


Se estimó la tasa de bioerosión interna y externa sobre colonias muertas de Orbicella annularis en el arrecife de Playa Mero del Parque Nacional Morrocoy (estado Falcón, Venezuela), como parte de una evaluación preliminar de los potenciales efectos de la perdida de esqueleto coralino en la estructura del arrecife y el reclutamiento de especies tras la mortandad masiva de corales ocurrida en el Parque Nacional durante el año 1996. Se realizaron colectas aleatorias de 12 pilares de colonias de O. annularis a profundidades de tres, seis y nueve metros, respectivamente. Posteriormente, siguiendo el eje principal de crecimiento, cada colonia fue cortada a un espesor de 10 mm y fotografiadas mediante rayos X para la detección de huellas correspondientes a grupos bioerosionadores. Para cada corte y huella se determinó el área de superficie erosionada (𝑘𝑔.𝑚−2.𝑎ñ𝑜−1), las tasas de bioerosión externa a partir del ancho de las bandas de crecimiento coralino anual (#𝑏𝑎𝑛𝑑𝑎𝑠.𝑎ñ𝑜−1) y el Índice de Valor de Importancia (IVI) de cada grupo bioerosionador. Se estimó una pérdida de sustrato coralino atribuible a una bioerosión interna promedio de 0,068 𝑘𝑔.𝑚−2.𝑎ñ𝑜−1, siendo el grupo de los bivalvos el bioerosionador interno dominante (IVI = 196,78). La tasa de bioerosión externa estimada fue de 2,97 𝑐𝑚.𝑎ñ𝑜−1 equivalente a 2 𝑏𝑎𝑛𝑑𝑎𝑠.𝑎ñ𝑜−1. Se observaron diferencias estadísticas únicamente entre el número de huellas totales y área total erosionada por los grupos bioerosionadores, descartando un posible efecto de la profundidad en el proceso de bioerosión en colonias muertas de O. annularis el arrecife de Playa Mero.


Palabras clave


erosión, bioerosionadores, esqueleto coralino, Playa Mero, Montastraea annularis

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Referencias


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