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Title: Omnifarious octocoral observations : ecology and genetics of octocoral communities from Útila, Bay Islands, Honduras
Author: Lovenburg, Vanessa
ISNI:       0000 0004 6495 3564
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2016
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The Oxford English Dictionary defines 'omnifarious' as 'comprising or relating to all sorts or varieties', which quite accurately captures the very nature of octocorals and this thesis. The research reported here, aims to describe undocumented communities of coral reef organisms - the octocorals - which are an emergent dominant component within their threatened ecosystem of the Caribbean. Within the last four decades, coral reefs worldwide have experienced a precipitous plunge in many ecosystem services they provide, and most notably in the Caribbean. The foundation to reef resilience is structured on the ecosystem's ability to repair and restructure itself in the face of environmental shifts. These intricately complex strategies of resilience depend on repair mechanisms provided by a source of biodiversity, much of which remains poorly understood. This work explores many facets of the functioning within this potential future coral reef ecosystem. These reports are one of the most significant contributions to documenting and describing octocoral biodiversity (e.g. species, genetic, and community diversity) of the wider ecoregion of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System within the last three decades.
Supervisor: Speight, Martin ; Rogers, Alex D. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Phylogeny ; Coral reef ecology ; Host parasite interaction ; Mesoamerican Barrier Reef ; habitat ; Cyphoma gibbous ; parasite ; flamingo tongue snail ; genetics ; phylogenetics ; molecular ; ALG11 ; diversity ; Utila ; octocoral ; mtmuts ; ecology ; symbiosis ; Caribbean ; coral ; COI ; host ; biodiversity