Inter-Research > DAO > v110 > n3 > p227-234  
Diseases of Aquatic Organisms

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DAO 110:227-234 (2014)  -  DOI:

Variation in black and white band disease progression in corals of the Gulf of Mannar and Palk Bay, Southeastern India

T. Thinesh1,2, G. Mathews1, K. Diraviya Raj1, J. K. Patterson Edward1

1Suganthi Devadason Marine Research Institute, 44 Beach Road, Tuticorin 628 001, Tamil Nadu, India
2Present address: Centre for Ecological Sciences, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore 560012, India
*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: Information on the progression of coral diseases and transmission to live corals is scarce despite the fact that coral disease poses one of the most lethal threats to the survival of coral reefs. In this study, in situ progression rates of lesions similar to black band disease (BBD) and white band disease (WBD) were measured in different species of corals from the Gulf of Mannar (GoM) and Palk Bay, southeastern India, during the period between January and December of 2009. Maximum progression rates of 3 and 1.6 cm mo-1 for BBD and WBD, respectively, were observed during May, when the temperature exceeded 30°C. The annual progression rate was 10.9 and 4.9 cm yr-1 for BBD at GoM and Palk Bay, respectively. Significant variation in the progression rate (p < 0.001) was observed between months in all the examined species. Significant correlation between temperature and disease progression rates for BBD (R2 = 0.875, p ≤ 0.001) and WBD (R2 = 0.776, p ≤ 0.001) was recorded. Rates of disease progression were higher in Palk Bay than in GoM. This could be attributed to the higher temperature coupled with higher anthropogenic activities in Palk Bay. Severe mortality was observed due to both BBD and WBD. No sign of recovery was noticed in the disease-affected colonies at either study site. Anthropogenic activities should be checked, and further research on both the transmission and progression rate and role of the diseases in reef dynamics should be carried out to understand the causal factors in reef degradation and generate a plan to manage the reef properly.

KEY WORDS: Black band disease · White band disease · Gulf of Mannar · Palk Bay · Disease progression

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Cite this article as: Thinesh T, Mathews G, Raj KD, Patterson Edward JK (2014) Variation in black and white band disease progression in corals of the Gulf of Mannar and Palk Bay, Southeastern India. Dis Aquat Org 110:227-234.

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