Human disturbances on coral reefs in Sri Lanka: a case study
1993 (English)In: Ambio, ISSN 0044-7447, Vol. 22, no 7, 474-480 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
The degradation of coral reefs in Sri Lanka has increased substantially over the last decades. Human activities causing this degradation include: mining for lime production, sewage discharges, discharges of oil and other pollutants in connection with shipping and port activities, destructive fishing practices, land and mangrove destruction, tourism and the collecting of fauna such as fish, shells and corals. In this study, three adjacent coral reefs: Bar Reef, Talawila Reef, and Kandakuliya Reef, which are widely scattered patch reefs off Kalpitiiya Peninsula, northwestern Sri Lanka, were surveyed and compared in terms of their fish and coral diversity and abundance as well as human and natural disturbances. Information was gathered by snorkelling in visual overview surveys and by scuba diving in detailed transect surveys. When each reef was ranked according to the extend of live coral cover, and chaetodontid diversity, the results indicated that Bar Reef was in excellent condition, Talawila Reef was intermediate, and Kandakuliya Reef was in poor condition. The diversitity of coral genera, the topographic relief and the proportion of coral rubble, did not follow the same pattern. The number of coral genera found was 49, while 283 fish species belonging to 51 families were recorded. Human disturbance factors on the reefs were found to be net fishing, boat anchoring and ornamental fish collection for the aquarium trade. Bottom-set nylon nets in particular were found to have a very destructive impact on the bottom fauna
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
1993. Vol. 22, no 7, 474-480 p.
fishery, bottom set nets, ornamental fish collection, Bar Reef
Research subject Marine Ecology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-26618OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-26618DiVA: diva2:210739