Alternate Title

A Reconnaissance of the Deeper Jamaican Coral Reef Fish Communities


A submersible was used to make repetitive dives in Jamaica to depths of 25 m, 50 m, and 100 m. With increasing depth there was a decline in both species and the number of individuals. The territorial damselfish and mixed-species groups of herbivorous fishes were conspicuously absent at 100 m. Few unique species appeared with increasing depth and thus the deep community resembled depauperate versions of the shallower communities. Twelve species were shared between the 3 depths but there was no significant correlation in ranked relative abundance. Thus increasing depth also influenced community organization.