A cost-effective approach to enhance scleractinian diversity on artificial shorelines

  • Published source details Toh T.C., Ng C.S.L., Loke H.X., Taira D., Toh K.B., Afiq-Rosli L., Du R.C.P., Cabaitan P., Sam S.Q., Kikuzawa Y.P., Chou L.M. & Song T. (2017) A cost-effective approach to enhance scleractinian diversity on artificial shorelines. Ecological Engineering, 99, 349-357.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Transplant or seed organisms onto subtidal artificial structures

Action Link
Biodiversity of Marine Artificial Structures
  1. Transplant or seed organisms onto subtidal artificial structures

    A randomized, before-and-after study in 2015–2016 on a subtidal seawall on an island coastline in the Singapore Strait, Singapore (Toh et al. 2017) reported that 58–100% of corals transplanted onto the seawall survived, depending on the species, that most survivors grew, and that transplanting corals increased the coral species richness and cover on the seawall. After six months, average transplant survival was lower for Pocillopora damicornis (58%) than for all other hard coral species (Echinopora lamellosa: 100%; Hydnophora rigida: 100%; Merulina ampliata: 91%; Platygyra sinensis: 97%; Podabacia crustacea: 92%). Surviving M. ampliata transplants had negative growth rates (-1 cm2/month), while all other species had positive growth rates (E. lamellosa: 11 cm2/month; H. rigida: 14 cm2/month; P. sinensis: 4 cm2/month; P. damicornis: 26 cm2/month; P. crustacea: 4 cm2/month). Coral species richness and cover on the seawall was higher (8 species, 21% cover) than before corals were transplanted (2 species, 3% cover). Corals were collected from natural reefs, fragmented and reared on nursery tables adjacent to a granite boulder seawall at 4 m depth for nine months, before being transplanted onto the seawall using epoxy putty. Fragments (diameter: 9–16 cm; area: 48–160 cm2) of six hard coral species (36 fragments/species) were randomly arranged in four patches on the seawall at 3m depth during April–August 2015. Corals were counted on the seawall (20 × 3 m section) before and six months after transplants were attached. Transplants were monitored from photographs over six months.

    (Summarised by: Ally Evans)

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