Encyclopedia of Earth

Common coral reef fishes of St. Martin

Content Cover Image

Blue tang (Paracanthurus hepatus) (By Tewy (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html), CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/) or CC-BY-2.5 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.5)], via Wikimedia Commons)

Introduction 

St. Martin is located the eastern Caribbean Sea that is shared with St. Marteen.  St. Martin is part of the French West Indies.  Over 190 species of reef fishes have been identified during REEF Fish Surveys in St. Martin/St. Maarten.

25 most common species in St. Martin

caption Blue tang—the most frequently observed reef fish in St. Maarten. ''Reef Fish Identification'', New World Publications © 1994. The following ranking is based on the results of 129  REEF Fish Surveys covering a bottom time of 123 hours and 38 minutes. (REEF Geographic Zone Report. St. Martin/St. Maarten combined. 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. 

 

 

caption Brown chromis—the reef fish with the highest mean abundance in St Maarten. ''Reef Fish Identification'', New World Publications © 1994. 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.

 

 

 

Species

% of surveys observed

Mean abundance category

 1. Blue tang

 89.9

 few-many

 2. Sergeant major

 89.9

 many

 3. Bluehead

 89.1

 many-abundant

 4. Spotted goatfish

 88.4

 few

 5. French grunt

 86.0

 few-many

 6. Ocean surgeonfish

 85.3

 many

 7. Stoplight parrotfish

 82.2

 few-many

 8. Foureye butterflyfish

 78.3

 few

 9. Yellowtail snapper

 75.2

 few-many

 10. Bicolor damselfish 

 72.1

 many

 11. Bluestriped grunt

 70.5

 few

 12. Trumpetfish 

 68.2

 few

 13. Brown chromis 

 68.2

 many

 14. Blackbar soldierfish

 68.2

 few-many

 15. Bar jack

 65.1

 few

 16. Yellowtail damselfish

 65.1

 few

 17. Spanish hogfish 

 62.8

 single-few

 18. Redband parrotfish 

 62.0

 few-many

 19. Yellow goatfish 

 62.0

 few-many

 20. Blue chromis 

 58.1

 many

 21. Sharpnose puffer 

 56.6

 single-few

 22.  Yellowhead wrasse 

 55.8

 few-many

 23. Rock beauty

 55.8

 few

 24. Striped parrotfish

 55.8

 few-many

 25.  Banded butterflyfish

 55.0

 few

References and Further Reading

Glossary

Citation

McGinley, M. (2014). Common coral reef fishes of St. Martin. Retrieved from http://www.eoearth.org/view/article/51cbed4e7896bb431f691422

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