Biodiversity

Common coral reef fishes of West Caicos

September 20, 2010, 7:19 pm

Introduction 

West Caicos is one of the Turks and Caicos Islands in the West Indies.  Over 285 species of reef fishes have been identified during REEF Fish Surveys in the Turks and Caicos Islands.

25 most common species in West Caicos

The following ranking is based on the results of 806  REEF Fish Surveys covering a bottom time of 738 hours and 12 minutes. (REEF Geographic Zone Report. June 3, 2009).  The species are ranked by the percentage of surveys in which a species was observed.  Abundance of fishes in REEF Fish Surveys are estimated using the following categories: 1- single =1 individual, 2-few = 2- 10 individuals, 3-many = 11-100 individuals, and 4-abundant > 100 individuals.  The mean numeric abundance (ranging from 1 - 4) was calculated for each species..  The mean abundance category is determined as follows: mean abundance category 0 - 1.49 = single, 1.50 - 1.99 = single-few, 2.0 - 2.49 = few, 2.5 - 2.99 = few-many, 3.0 - 3.49 = many, 3.5 -3.99 = many-abundant, and 4.0 = abundant.

caption Blue chromis—the most frequently observed reef fishand species with the highest mean abundance in West Caicos. ''Reef Fish Identification'', New World Publications © 1994.

Species

 % of surveys observed

Mean abundance category

 1. Blue chromis

 88.2

 many-abundant

 2. Fairy basslet

 88.1

 many

 3. Blue tang 

 87.1

 few-many

 4. Foureye butterflyfish

 85.7

 few

 5. Bluehead

 84.0

 few-many

 6. Yellowtail snapper

 82.1

 many

 7. Bicolor damselfish

 82.1

 few-many

 8. Black durgon 

 80.4

 few-many

 9. Stoplight parrotfish  

 79.2

 few

 10. Bar jack   

 73.6

 few-many

 11. Nassau grouper  

 73.3

 single-few

 12. Rock beauty   

 73.2

 single-few

 13. Yellow goatfish  

 72.5

 single-few

 14. French grunt 

 68.7

 few

 15. Coney

 67.6

 few-many

 16. Bluestriped grunt

 67.4

 few

 17. Banded butterflyfish  

 67.0

 few

 18. Longspine squirrelfish

 66.0

 few

 19. Yellowhead wrasse 

 66.0

 few-many

 20. Princess parrotfish  

 65.6

 few

 21.  Great barracuda 

 64.8

 single-few

 22.  Horse-eye jack 

 62.7

 few-many

 23. Queen triggerfish 

 62.0

 single-few

 24. Schoolmaster 

 60.3

 few-many

 25.  Squirrelfish

 60.0

 few

References and Further Reading

Glossary

Citation

McGinley, M. (2010). Common coral reef fishes of West Caicos. Retrieved from http://www.eoearth.org/view/article/151381

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