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    Storm record from St. John, USVI in 1987–2011 (St. John LTREB project, VI Octocorals project).
    
  
  
    
    

Storm record from St. John, USVI in 1987–2011 (St. John LTREB project, VI Octocorals project).

Website: https://www.bco-dmo.org/dataset/664267
Data Type: Other Field Results
Version: Final
Version Date: 2016-11-08

Project
» LTREB Long-term coral reef community dynamics in St. John, USVI: 1987-2019 (St. John LTREB)
» Ecology and functional biology of octocoral communities (VI Octocorals)
ContributorsAffiliationRole
Edmunds, Peter J.California State University Northridge (CSU-Northridge)Principal Investigator
Tsounis, GeorgiosCalifornia State University Northridge (CSU-Northridge)Co-Principal Investigator
Ake, HannahWoods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI BCO-DMO)BCO-DMO Data Manager


Coverage

Spatial Extent: N:-18.298056 E:64.803611 S:-18.376667 W:64.668056
Temporal Extent: 1987-06-01 - 2011-12-31

Dataset Description

Names and descriptions of hurricanes near St. John USVI.


Acquisition Description

Based on Tsounis and Edmunds (In press), Ecosphere: 

Physical environmental conditions were characterized using three features that are well-known to affect coral reef community dynamics (described in Glynn 1993, Rogers 1993, Fabricius et al. 2005): seawater temperature, rainfall, and hurricane intensity. Together, these were used to generate seven dependent variables describing physical environmental features. Seawater temperature was recorded at each site every 15-30 min using a variety of logging sensors (see Edmunds 2006 for detailed information on the temperature measurement regime). Seawater temperature was characterized using five dependent variables calculated for each calendar year: mean temperature, maximum temperature, and minimum temperature (all averaged by day and month for each year), as well as the number of days hotter than 29.3 deg C (“hot days”), and the number of days with temperatures greater than or equal to 26.0 deg C (“cold days”). The temperature defining "hot days" was determined by the coral bleaching threshold for St. John (http://www.coral.noaa.gov/research/climate-change/coral-bleaching.html), and the temperature defining "cold days" was taken as 26.0 deg C which marks the lower 12th percentile of all daily temperatures between 1989 and 2005 (Edmunds, 2006). The upper temperature limit was defined by the local bleaching threshold, and the lower limit defined the 12th percentile of local seawater temperature records (see Edmunds 2006 for details). Rainfall was measured at various locations around St. John (see http://www.sercc.com) but often on the north shore (courtesy of R. Boulon) (see Edmunds and Gray 2014). To assess the influence of hurricanes, a categorical index of local hurricane impact was employed, with the index based on qualitative estimates of wave impacts in Great Lameshur Bay as a function of wind speed, wind direction, and distance of the nearest approach of each hurricane to the study area (see Gross and Edmunds 2015). Index values of 0 were assigned to years with no hurricanes, 0.5 to hurricanes with low impacts, and 1 for hurricanes with high impacts, and years were characterized by the sum of their hurricane index values.


Processing Description

Based on Tsounis and Edmunds (In press), Ecosphere: 

Temporal trends of physical parameters were tested through linear regression using 3-year centered moving averages to address the lag of response of benthic community structure to environmental conditions (resulting in the loss of 2 y from the dataset).

Question 2. The seven physical environmental variables were tested for collinearity by screening variables by pairwise linear correlation. This procedure identified four variables that were independent, and these were used for subsequent analyses: hurricane index (Hindex), mean seawater temperature (deg C), rainfall (cm), and minimum seawater temperature (deg C). The physical variables were transformed using 3-year, centered moving averages of each dependent variable to smooth short-term fluctuations arising from stochastic effects, and to address delayed effects of environmental conditions on the communities. As physical conditions were measured on different scales, they were z-score standardized prior to analysis (Sokal and Rohlf 2012), and expressed as resemblance matrix based on Euclidean distances.

Each of the four assemblages was tested for associations with all combinations of the four measures of physical conditions, using Spearman rank correlation (Clarke and Ainsworth 1993). The Bioenv function (Clarke and Ainsworth 1993) was used for correlations, and was followed with a Mantel procedure (Legendre and Legendre 1998) to identify the set of physical variables most strongly associated with the biological variables, with significance evaluated in a permutational framework. The Bioenv function was performed using the vegan package for R (R Development Core Team 2008 [Oksanen et al. 2015]).

BCO-DMO Processing Notes:

-Reformatted column names to comply with BCO-DMO standards.


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Related Publications

Clarke, K., & Ainsworth, M. (1993). A method of linking multivariate community structure to environmental variables. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 92(3), 205-219.
Edmunds, P. J. (2006). Temperature-mediated transitions between isometry and allometry in a colonial, modular invertebrate. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 273(1599), 2275–2281. doi:10.1098/rspb.2006.3589
Edmunds, P. J., & Gray, S. C. (2014). The effects of storms, heavy rain, and sedimentation on the shallow coral reefs of St. John, US Virgin Islands. Hydrobiologia, 734(1), 143–158. doi:10.1007/s10750-014-1876-7
Fabricius, K. E. (2005). Effects of terrestrial runoff on the ecology of corals and coral reefs: review and synthesis. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 50(2), 125–146. doi:10.1016/j.marpolbul.2004.11.028
Glynn, P. W. (1993). Coral reef bleaching: ecological perspectives. Coral Reefs, 12(1), 1–17. doi:10.1007/BF00303779
Gross, K., & Edmunds, P. J. (2015). Stability of Caribbean coral communities quantified by long-term monitoring and autoregression models. Ecology, 96(7), 1812–1822. doi:10.1890/14-0941.1
Legendre, P., and L. Legendre. 1998. Numerical Ecology. 2nd English 918 Edition. Elsevier.
Oksanen, J., F. G. Blanchet, R. Kindt, P. Legendre, P. R. Minchin, R. B. O'Hara, G. L. Simpson, P. Solymos, M., H., H. Stevens, and H. Wagner. 2015. Vegan: Community Ecology Package. R package version 2.3-0. http://CRAN.R-project.org/package=vegan.
Rogers, C. S. (1993). Hurricanes and coral reefs: The intermediate disturbance hypothesis revisited. Coral Reefs, 12(3-4), 127–137. doi:10.1007/BF00334471
Sokal, R. R., and F. J. Rohlf. 2012. Biometry Fourth Edition. Freeman, New York.

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Parameters

ParameterDescriptionUnits
yearYear of hurricane; YYYY unitless
hurricane_nameName of hurricane unitless
distanceDistance of the closest recorded point to Lameshur Bay based on NOAAs every-6-hour data recording kilometers
windWindspeed of the sustained winds for the data point at which the storm made its closest pass to Lameshur Bay miles per hour
interp_distanceDistance of the closest approach to Lameshur Bay based on linearly interpolating the storm track between NOAAs data points kilometers
interp_windWindspeed of the sustained winds at the point of closest approach to Lameshur Bay, based on linearly interpolating the wind speed from NOAAs measurements kilometers
interp_dateJulian date of the closest approach linearly interpolated unitless
lameshur_windWindspeed at Lameshur Bay at the moment of closest approach based on an exponential decay function for windspeed with increasing distance from the storm center and a decay rate of 0.016 km^-1 as reported in PJEs Millepora paper miles per hour
hurricaneSeverityIndexMajor (=1) / minor (=0.5) storm classification based on lines 262-271 of Pete Emunds draft 25y of change manuscript. (Note that corresponding text was cut from the final version of the publication.) unitless

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Deployments

Edmunds_VINP

Website
Platform
Virgin Islands National Park
Start Date
1987-01-01
End Date
2016-09-01
Description
Studies of corals and hermit crabs


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Project Information

LTREB Long-term coral reef community dynamics in St. John, USVI: 1987-2019 (St. John LTREB)


Coverage: St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands; California State University Northridge


Long Term Research in Environmental Biology (LTREB) in US Virgin Islands: From the NSF award abstract: In an era of growing human pressures on natural resources, there is a critical need to understand how major ecosystems will respond, the extent to which resource management can lessen the implications of these responses, and the likely state of these ecosystems in the future. Time-series analyses of community structure provide a vital tool in meeting these needs and promise a profound understanding of community change. This study focuses on coral reef ecosystems; an existing time-series analysis of the coral community structure on the reefs of St. John, US Virgin Islands, will be expanded to 27 years of continuous data in annual increments. Expansion of the core time-series data will be used to address five questions: (1) To what extent is the ecology at a small spatial scale (1-2 km) representative of regional scale events (10's of km)? (2) What are the effects of declining coral cover in modifying the genetic population structure of the coral host and its algal symbionts? (3) What are the roles of pre- versus post-settlement events in determining the population dynamics of small corals? (4) What role do physical forcing agents (other than temperature) play in driving the population dynamics of juvenile corals? and (5) How are populations of other, non-coral invertebrates responding to decadal-scale declines in coral cover? Ecological methods identical to those used over the last two decades will be supplemented by molecular genetic tools to understand the extent to which declining coral cover is affecting the genetic diversity of the corals remaining. An information management program will be implemented to create broad access by the scientific community to the entire data set. The importance of this study lies in the extreme longevity of the data describing coral reefs in a unique ecological context, and the immense potential that these data possess for understanding both the patterns of comprehensive community change (i.e., involving corals, other invertebrates, and genetic diversity), and the processes driving them. Importantly, as this project is closely integrated with resource management within the VI National Park, as well as larger efforts to study coral reefs in the US through the NSF Moorea Coral Reef LTER, it has a strong potential to have scientific and management implications that extend further than the location of the study. The following publications and data resulted from this project: 2015    Edmunds PJ, Tsounis G, Lasker HR (2015) Differential distribution of octocorals and scleractinians around St. John and St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands. Hydrobiologia. doi: 10.1007/s10750-015-2555-zoctocoral - sp. abundance and distributionDownload complete data for this publication (Excel file) 2015    Lenz EA, Bramanti L, Lasker HR, Edmunds PJ. Long-term variation of octocoral populations in St. John, US Virgin Islands. Coral Reefs DOI 10.1007/s00338-015-1315-xoctocoral survey - densitiesoctocoral counts - photoquadrats vs. insitu surveyoctocoral literature reviewDownload complete data for this publication (Excel file) 2015   Privitera-Johnson, K., et al., Density-associated recruitment in octocoral communities in St. John, US Virgin Islands, J.Exp. Mar. Biol. Ecol. DOI 10.1016/j.jembe.2015.08.006octocoral recruitmentDownload complete data for this publication (Excel file) 2014    Edmunds PJ. Landscape-scale variation in coral reef community structure in the United States Virgin Islands. Marine Ecology Progress Series 509: 137–152. DOI 10.3354/meps10891. Data at MCR-VINP. Download complete data for this publication (Excel file) 2014    Edmunds PJ, Nozawa Y, Villanueva RD.  Refuges modulate coral recruitment in the Caribbean and Pacific.  Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology 454: 78-84. DOI: 10.1016/j.jembe.2014.02.00 Data at MCR-VINP.Download complete data for this publication (Excel file) 2014    Edmunds PJ, Gray SC.  The effects of storms, heavy rain, and sedimentation on the shallow coral reefs of St. John, US Virgin Islands.  Hydrobiologia 734(1):143-148. Data at MCR-VINP.Download complete data for this publication (Excel file) 2014    Levitan, D, Edmunds PJ, Levitan K. What makes a species common? No evidence of density-dependent recruitment or mortality of the sea urchin Diadema antillarum after the 1983-1984 mass mortality.  Oecologia. DOI 10.1007/s00442-013-2871-9. Data at MCR-VINP.Download complete data for this publication (Excel file) 2014    Lenz EA, Brown D, Didden C, Arnold A, Edmunds PJ.  The distribution of hermit crabs and their gastropod shells on shallow reefs in St. John, US Virgin Islands.  Bulletin of Marine Science 90(2):681-692. http://dx.doi.org/10.5343/bms.2013.1049 Data at MCR-VINP.Download complete data for this publication (Excel file) 2013    Edmunds PJ.  Decadal-scale changes in the community structure of coral reefs in St. John, US Virgin Islands.  Marine Ecology Progress Series 489: 107-123. Data at MCR-VINP.Download complete data for this publication (zipped Excel files) 2013    Brown D, Edmunds PJ.  Long-term changes in the population dynamics of the Caribbean hydrocoral Millepora spp.  J. Exp Mar Biol Ecol 441: 62-70. doi: 10.1016/j.jembe.2013.01.013Millepora colony sizeMillepora cover - temps - storms 1992-2008Millepora cover 1992-2008seawater temperature USVI 1992-2008storms USVI 1992-2008Download complete data for this publication (Excel file) 2012    Brown D, Edmunds PJ. The hermit crab Calcinus tibicen lives commensally on Millepora spp. in St. John, United States Virgin Islands.  Coral Reefs 32: 127-135. doi: 10.1007/s00338-012-0948-2crab abundance and coral sizecrab displacement behaviorcrab nocturnal surveyscrab predator avoidanceDownload complete data for this publication (Excel file) 2011    Green DH, Edmunds PJ.  Spatio-temporal variability of coral recruitment on shallow reefs in St. John, US Virgin Islands.  Journal of Experimenal Marine Biology and Ecology 397: 220-229. Data at MCR-VINP.Download complete data for this publication (Excel file) 2011    Colvard NB, Edmunds PJ. (2011) Decadal-scale changes in invertebrate abundances on a Caribbean coral reef.  Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology. 397(2): 153-160. doi: 10.1016/j.jembe.2010.11.015benthic invert codesinverts - Tektite and Yawzi Ptinverts - pooledDownload complete data for this publication (Excel file)

Ecology and functional biology of octocoral communities (VI Octocorals)


Coverage: St. John, US Virgin Islands: 18.3185, 64.7242


The recent past has not been good for coral reefs, and journals have been filled with examples of declining coral cover, crashing fish populations, rising cover of macroalgae, and a future potentially filled with slime. However, reefs are more than the corals and fishes for which they are known best, and their biodiversity is affected strongly by other groups of organisms. The non-coral fauna of reefs is being neglected in the rush to evaluate the loss of corals and fishes, and this project will add on to an on-going long term ecological study by studying soft corals. This project will be focused on the ecology of soft corals on reefs in St. John, USVI to understand the Past, Present and the Future community structure of soft corals in a changing world. For the Past, the principal investigators will complete a retrospective analysis of octocoral abundance in St. John between 1992 and the present, as well as Caribbean-wide since the 1960's. For the Present, they will: (i) evaluate spatio-temporal changes between soft corals and corals, (ii) test for the role of competition with macroalgae and between soft corals and corals as processes driving the rising abundance of soft corals, and (iii) explore the role of soft corals as "animal forests" in modifying physical conditions beneath their canopy, thereby modulating recruitment dynamics. For the Future the project will conduct demographic analyses on key soft corals to evaluate annual variation in population processes and project populations into a future impacted by global climate change. This project was funded to provide and independent "overlay" to the ongoing LTREB award (DEB-1350146, co-funded by OCE, PI Edmunds) focused on the long-term dynamics of coral reefs in St. John. Note: This project is closely associated with the project "RAPID: Resilience of Caribbean octocorals following Hurricanes Irma and Maria". See: https://www.bco-dmo.org/project/749653. The following publications and data resulted from this project: 2017 Tsounis, G., and P. J. Edmunds. Three decades of coral reef community dynamics in St. John, USVI: a contrast of scleractinians and octocorals. Ecosphere 8(1):e01646. DOI: 10.1002/ecs2.1646Rainfall and temperature dataCoral and macroalgae abundance and distributionDescriptions of hurricanes affecting St. John 2016 Gambrel, B. and Lasker, H.R. Marine Ecology Progress Series 546: 85–95, DOI: 10.3354/meps11670Colony to colony interactionsEunicea flexuosa interactionsGorgonia ventalina asymmetryNearest neighbor surveys 2015 Lenz EA, Bramanti L, Lasker HR, Edmunds PJ. Long-term variation of octocoral populations in St. John, US Virgin Islands. Coral Reefs DOI 10.1007/s00338-015-1315-xoctocoral survey - densitiesoctocoral counts - photoquadrats vs. insitu surveyoctocoral literature reviewDownload complete data for this publication (Excel file) 2015 Privitera-Johnson, K., et al., Density-associated recruitment in octocoral communities in St. John, US Virgin Islands, J.Exp. Mar. Biol. Ecol. DOI: 10.1016/j.jembe.2015.08.006octocoral density dependenceDownload complete data for this publication (Excel file) Other datasets related to this project:octocoral transects - adult colony height


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Funding

Funding SourceAward
National Science Foundation (NSF)
NSF Division of Ocean Sciences (NSF OCE)
NSF Division of Environmental Biology (NSF DEB)

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This document is created by info v 4.1f 5 Oct 2018 from the content of the BCO-DMO metadata database.    2019-05-23  22:01:09