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Distribution, Abundance and Diversity of Wrasses (Family Labridae) Along

By walaa on January 26,2009


Magdy A. Alwany


         This study examines the distribution, abundance and diversity of wrasse fishes (family Labridae) on reef flat and reef slope along 70 km of Sharm El-Sheikh coast, Red Sea. The total number of species was 30 species belonging to 15 genera. The average number of species was higher on the reef slope than on the reef flat, but individual numbers were higher on the reef flat than on the slope; (due to schooling of one small fish of one species on reef flat, Klunzinger’s wrasse: Thalassoma rueppellii). This species was the most abundant species (185.0 fish/600 m3), followed by the cleaner wrasse, Labroides dimidiatus (11.7 fish/600 m3). Over all sites, four species (Gomphosus coeruleus, L. dimidiatus, Pseudocheilinus hexataenia and T. rueppellii) were recorded frequently and regularly. Generally, there was no clear zonation preference in the distribution of wrasses: but some species (e.g. T. rueppellii) preferred the reef flat habitat, others preferred the reef slope habitat (e.g. G. coeruleus and Larabicus quadrilineatus). The other species have roved frequently in all zones, but most of them occur frequently on reef slope. Two species only were found at inner reef flat in the study area, while the mid reef flat were dominated by 7 species, finally outer reef flat have 16 species of labrid fishes. All recorded species were found on the reef slope. Both the invertebrate-feeder and omnivores were most abundant in the area of study. They represented by 83.3 % of total fish population on Sharm El-Sheikh Reefs.Key words: Abundance, coral reef fishes, Egypt, Red Sea, species diversity

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