Coralliophila Abbreviata: A Significant Corallivore!
Abstract:Predation by Coralliophila abbreviata on Acropora palmata was observed in the field and in a coral reef microcosm. The mollusks removed as much as 16 cm2 of coral tissue/day/animal. The damage was irreversible, and algal colonization quickly occurred over the skeleton in areas stripped of living tissue. We describe aspects of Coralliophila behavior during feeding and following displacement experiments.
The extent of Coralliophila predation on corals appears to be limited on some reefs by fish predation, but these mollusks are significant corallivores when predation pressure is low. Our observations suggest that feeding by Coralliophila can also attract other corallivores (butterflyfish) to a colony, accelerating its death.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: April 1, 1982
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