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Free Content Associations between corals and macro-infaunal invertebrates in Jamaica, with a list of Caribbean and atlantic coral associates

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A comprehensive survey of all macro-in faunal invertebrate associates of 44 species of living coral in Jamaica documents 19 species of associates in 20 coral species. In general, these findings agree with other, qualitative observations of Caribbean associates recorded in the literature. In addition, several new associations are recorded, including a new species of bivalve and at least two coral-boring sipunculans. Distribution of live coral associates on the reef is not related to depth or size of individual coral colonies. However, it is related to the longer term proportional abundances of coral species, which appear to be stable over time and with coral rank on the aggression hierarchy. Presence of associates is also significantly inversely correlated with polyp size. Associate species endemic to the Caribbean and differences in the families of coral which are important hosts in the Caribbean and Indo-Pacific indicate large differences in the evolutionary history of associations in the two reef provinces.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: March 1, 1987

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