MEPS 375:209-218 (2009)  -  doi:10.3354/meps07890

Cascading effects of fishing on Galapagos rocky reef communities: reanalysis using corrected data

Jorge I. Sonnenholzner1, Lydia B. Ladah1,3,*, Kevin D. Lafferty2

1CICESE, Department of Biological Oceanography, Km 107 Carretera Tijuana-Ensenada, Ensenada, Baja California, CP 22860, Mexico
2Western Ecological Research Center, US Geological Survey, Marine Science Institute, University of California, Santa Barbara, California 93106, USA
3Mailing address: CICESE, Department of Biological Oceanography, PO Box 434844, San Diego, California 92143-4844, USA
*Corresponding author. Email:

ABSTRACT: This article replaces Sonnenholzner et al. (2007; Mar Ecol Prog Ser 343:77–85), which was retracted on September 19, 2007, due to errors in entry of data on sea urchins. We sampled 10 highly fished and 10 (putatively) lightly fished shallow rocky reefs in the southeastern area of the Galapagos Marine Reserve, Ecuador. After the correction, these are the new results: there was a negative association between slate-pencil urchins Eucidaris galapagensis and non-coralline algae. In addition, pencil urchins were less abundant where there were many predators. An indirect positive association between predators and non-coralline algae occurred. Fishing appeared to affect this trophic cascade. The spiny lobster Panulirus penicillatus, the slipper lobster Scyllarides astori, and the Mexican hogfish Bodianus diplotaenia were significantly less abundant at highly fished sites. Urchin density was higher at highly fished sites. Non-coralline algae were nearly absent from highly fished sites, where a continuous carpet of the anemone Aiptasia sp. was recorded, and the algal assemblage was mainly structured by encrusting coralline and articulated calcareous algae.

KEY WORDS: Trophic cascade · Fishing · Predation · Population structure · Eucidaris galapagensis · Galapagos Marine Reserve · Ecuador

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Cite this article as: Sonnenholzner JI, Ladah LB, Lafferty KD (2009) Cascading effects of fishing on Galapagos rocky reef communities: reanalysis using corrected data. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 375:209-218

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