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Research Paper | February 20, 2022

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Diversity and abundance of Coral Reefs in Palaui Island protected landscape and seascape, San Vicente Sta. Ana, Cagayan, Philippines

Melanie C. Villarao, Marino R. Romero

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J. Bio. Env. Sci.20(2), 106-115, February 2022


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Palaui Island Protected Landscape and Seascape (PIPLS) is one of the Marine Key Biodiversity Areas (KBA’s) in Philippines and it is noted for its enormous coral reef. The study was conducted to assess the health of PIPLS coral reef ecosystem and its diversity. Point Intercept Transect (PIT) method was used to monitor the coral reef condition, diversity, and the supporting fauna of coral reef ecosystem. The overall coral reef percentage cover was 70% which is in good condition. New recruits were found on the area which demonstrate a recovery process. There was a high percentage of live hard corals (42.2%) dominated by Acropora and Porites species, live soft corals (27.2%) dominated by Lobophytum species, and white dead corals (1.2%). Hard and soft corals with the highest density is Porites lobota (12.15%) and Lobophytum pauciflorum (8.41%), respectively. The overall species richness of PIPLS was 89 and a diversity index of 3.6 which means that PIPLS harbours different species belonging to different families but only occur in few numbers. The Simpson index value for all the observation sites indicates that all taxa were equally present. There are six (6) coral life corms thriving in PIPLS, these includes the tabular, branching, solitary, massive, encrusting and digitate corals. The health status of coral reef depends on environmental and human intervention. In order to determine if there are changes on the status and condition of coral reefs in the area and conservation programs being implemented are successful, yearly monitoring should be conducted.


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