Authors: Yoklavich, M., Laidig, T., Taylor, A., Watters, D., Krigsman, L., Love, M.

Abstract: In 2010, the NOAA Deep-Sea Coral Research and Technology Program (DSCRTP) initiated a threeyear study to advance our understanding of DSC off the west coast of the U.S. As part of this study, we conducted a cruise during Fall 2010, which focused on the biology and ecology of the Christmas tree black coral and their use by demersal fishes on three deep offshore banks in the SCB (Hidden Reef, Footprint, and Piggy Bank). Our report provides a summary of the methods and results from underwater surveys of these coral colonies and associated habitats, sponges, and fishes. These surveys were a collaborative effort among researchers from the Southwest Fisheries Science Center (SWFSC) and the University of California Santa Barbara. The objectives of our research were to: 1. Quantify habitat-specific density and size composition of Christmas tree black corals; 2. Determine fish associations with these black corals; 3. Evaluate change in the black corals eight years after an initial baseline survey was conducted; 4. Quantify other corals and sponges occurring at the Hidden Reef study site; 5. Collect corals and sponges to verify identifications on the three study sites.

  • Technical Report
Type: DSCRTP Supported Date: 2013
  • Pacific Council
  • Footprint
  • Hidden Reef
  • Piggy Bank