Factors affecting the detection distances of reef fish: Implications for visual counts

Bozec, Yves-Marie, Kulbicki, Michel, Laloë, Francis, Mou-Tham, Gérard and Gascuel, Didier (2011) Factors affecting the detection distances of reef fish: Implications for visual counts. Marine Biology, 158 5: 969-981. doi:10.1007/s00227-011-1623-9

Author Bozec, Yves-Marie
Kulbicki, Michel
Laloë, Francis
Mou-Tham, Gérard
Gascuel, Didier
Title Factors affecting the detection distances of reef fish: Implications for visual counts
Journal name Marine Biology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0025-3162
Publication date 2011-05
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1007/s00227-011-1623-9
Volume 158
Issue 5
Start page 969
End page 981
Total pages 13
Place of publication Heidelberg, Germany
Publisher Springer
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Detection patterns of coral reef fish were assessed from the meta-analysis of distance sampling surveys performed by visual census in New Caledonia and French Polynesia, from 1986 to 1999. From approximately 100,000 observations relating to 593 species, the frequency distributions of fish detection distances perpendicular to the transect line were compared according to species characteristics and sampling conditions. The shape and extension of these detection profiles varied markedly with fish size, shyness, and crypticity, indicating strong differences of detectability across species. Detection of very small and cryptic fish decreased strongly 1 m away from the line. Conversely, sightings of shy and large species were excessively low in the first meters due to diver avoidance prior to detection. The larger the fish, the greater the fleeing distance. Distance data underscore how inconsistent detectability biases across species and sites can affect the accuracy of visual censuses when assessing coral reef fish populations.
Keyword Strip transect
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Communicated by D. Goulet.

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2012 Collection
School of Biological Sciences Publications
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Created: Fri, 02 Sep 2011, 16:46:21 EST by Gail Walter on behalf of School of Biological Sciences