Predicting the geographical distribution of Acropora muricata in two lesser-known reef systems of the Andaman Sea

Anakha, M and Sreenath, K R and Joshi, K K and Padua, Shelton and Nameer, P O and Menon, Nandini (2022) Predicting the geographical distribution of Acropora muricata in two lesser-known reef systems of the Andaman Sea. Journal of Coastal Conservation, 26. ISSN 1874-7841

Full text not available from this repository.
Official URL:
Related URLs:


    Coral reefs are undergoing deterioration worldwide due to climate and anthropogenic stressors, notwithstanding the enormous support they provide to marine biodiversity and the essential services to humans. Knowledge about the extent of hard coral distribution is a key requirement for designing conservation strategies such as Marine Protected Areas(MPA). The transboundary island groups of the Andaman Sea—Andaman, Nicobar and Mergui Archipelagos—are largely underexplored and less managed due to their remoteness and various political constraints. In the present study, we developed a maximum entropy (Maxent) based distribution model for the stony coral Acropora muricata by using records of its occurrence and 14 remotely sensed environmental variables along with bathymetry and distance from the shore as predictors. Our model predicted this species’ current distribution, with the mean area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) value of 0.908. The important predictor variables determining the distribution were bathymetry, distance from the shore, calcite, PAR, and ocean current. Many of the unexplored islands, seamounts and shallow patches of the Andaman Sea such as Cinque Island, Invisible Bank, Batti Malv Island, Tillanchong island, Narcondam, Barren island, Than, Dunkin, Cash Island, the southern tip of Zadetkyi, Bruer, Graham, Clara Island, Buda, Lord Loughborough Island, Quoin Island, Tachai, Koh Bon, Ko Payang and several other unnamed sites were predicted as potential areas of occurrence of A. muricata as per this study. The presence of this species, which is the most common hard coral in the Indo-Pacific, indicates the existence of coral reef ecosystems in these areas. Such habitats and the region’s proximity towards the coral triangle imply better chances of connectivity and resilience. This study will contribute toward designing a transboundary conservation network and developing management plans to maintain sustainable fisheries.

    Item Type: Article
    Uncontrolled Keywords: Species distribution modelling; Maxent; Mergui Archipelago; Hard corals; Nicobar Islands; A.muricata
    Subjects: Marine Ecosystems > Coral Reefs
    Marine Biodiversity
    Divisions: CMFRI-Kochi > Marine Biodiversity Division
    Subject Area > CMFRI > CMFRI-Kochi > Marine Biodiversity Division
    CMFRI-Kochi > Marine Biodiversity Division
    Subject Area > CMFRI-Kochi > Marine Biodiversity Division
    Depositing User: Arun Surendran
    Date Deposited: 11 Jan 2023 10:37
    Last Modified: 11 Jan 2023 10:37

    Actions (login required)

    View Item View Item