Study

Species, trophic, and functional diversity in marine protected and non-protected areas

  • Published source details Villamor A. & Becerro M.A. (2012) Species, trophic, and functional diversity in marine protected and non-protected areas. Journal of Sea Research, 73, 109-116

Actions

This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Designate a Marine Protected Area and prohibit all types of fishing

Action Link
Subtidal Benthic Invertebrate Conservation

Cease or prohibit all types of fishing in a marine protected area

Action Link
Marine Fish Conservation
  1. Designate a Marine Protected Area and prohibit all types of fishing

    A replicated, paired, site comparison study in 2008 of ten rocky seabed areas in the Mediterranean Sea, Spain (Villamor & Becerro 2012) found that marine protected areas prohibiting all fishing (no-take) for at least 10 years had similar overall combined invertebrate, fish, and algae community composition and species diversity to unprotected fished areas. Overall community composition varied geographically, but not with protection status (data presented as graphical analyses). Species diversity was similar across areas (diversity presented as a diversity index). In addition, two of ten filter-feeding invertebrate groups were more abundant inside the no-take areas than outside (see paper for details). In August 2008, three sites inside each of five no-take areas (designated between 1983 and 1998) and three sites in each of five adjacent (paired) fished areas were surveyed at 4–11 m depth. All organisms (invertebrates, fish, and algae), were identified and counted along a 50 m2 transect/site. Filter-feeding invertebrates were sorted into 10 trophic groups.

    (Summarised by: Anaëlle Lemasson)

  2. Cease or prohibit all types of fishing in a marine protected area

    A replicated, paired, site comparison study in 2008 of five shallow rocky seabed areas in the Mediterranean Sea, Spain (Villamor & Becerro 2021) found that no-take marine reserves closed to fishing for at least 10 years, had higher overall abundances of top predators (fish) and carnivore species (fish and invertebrates) and a similar abundance of herbivore species (fish and invertebrates), compared to non-protected areas outside. Overall, top fish predators (two families) and carnivores (three fish families, one invertebrate) were more abundant inside than outside the no-take marine reserves and the abundance of herbivores (one fish and one invertebrate species) was similar (data reported as statistical results and presented graphically for each reserve). In August 2008, five marine reserves along the east coast of Spain were surveyed by underwater visual census. Six transects, 50 × 5 m, were done at each reserve: three in no-take areas and three in unprotected areas nearby (4–12 km). All fish, and two invertebrate species, were identified, counted, and assigned to one of three universal feeding groups (see paper for list of species). Reserves were protected for 10–25 years.

    (Summarised by: Rosslyn McIntyre)

Output references

What Works in Conservation

What Works in Conservation provides expert assessments of the effectiveness of actions, based on summarised evidence, in synopses. Subjects covered so far include amphibians, birds, terrestrial mammals, forests, peatland and control of freshwater invasive species. More are in progress.

More about What Works in Conservation

Download free PDF or purchase
The Conservation Evidence Journal

The Conservation Evidence Journal

An online, free to publish in, open-access journal publishing results from research and projects that test the effectiveness of conservation actions.

Read the latest volume: Volume 18

Go to the CE Journal

Discover more on our blog

Our blog contains the latest news and updates from the Conservation Evidence team, the Conservation Evidence Journal, and our global partners in evidence-based conservation.


Who uses Conservation Evidence?

Meet some of the evidence champions

Endangered Landscape Programme Red List Champion - Arc Kent Wildlife Trust The Rufford Foundation Save the Frogs - Ghana Bern wood Supporting Conservation Leaders National Biodiversity Network Sustainability Dashboard Frog Life The international journey of Conservation - Oryx British trust for ornithology Cool Farm Alliance UNEP AWFA Butterfly Conservation People trust for endangered species Vincet Wildlife Trust