Volume 58

The Rationale for Regular, Rapid Reef Assessments Program Within the GCFI Region

Ginsberg, R.N., J.C. Lang
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Date: November, 2005

Pages: 501

Event: Proceedings of the Fifty Eighth Annual Gulf and Caribbean Fisheries Institute

City: San Andres

Country: Colombia


Widespread concern provoked by recent losses of in the wider Caribbean’s coral reef fishery resources, and in the overall condition of its coral reefs, led to the development of the Atlantic and Gulf Rapid Reef Assessment (AGRRA) project. The nearly 800 surveys in the AGRRA database (see www.agrra.org) constitute important baselines against which future shifts in finfish resources and reef health can be assessed locally, but regional-scale interpretations of the data are limited by the confounding of temporal and spatial variation that has occurred during the eight years in which the assessments were conducted. To address these constraints, we propose an international program of rapid reef assessments conducted at regular intervals at sites representative of each sub-region of the wider Caribbean has been proposed. The Gulf and Caribbean Fishery Institute (GCFI), with its strong ties to researchers, mangers and educators, as well as other colleagues, are invited to join with us in helping to achieve this new phase of assessing reef fishery and ecosystem assessment in the wider Caribbean.

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