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Bednarski VR.2017. Investigation of Diadema savignyi’s role in shaping the abundance of the brown microalga, Sargassum Pacificum, in Mo’orea, French Polynesia. PeerJ Preprints5:e2708v1https://doi.org/10.7287/peerj.preprints.2708v1
The role of Diadema savignyi in controlling the brown microalga, Sargassum pacificum, was studied on the barrier reef of Mo’orea, French Polynesia. A survey of the area was conducted to determine if there was a trend between the number of D. savignyi and the amount of S. pacificum on a coral bommie; no correlation was found. A field experiment involved relocating D. savignyi by placing groups of seven on coral bommies in the backreef outside of Cooks Bay. At the end of the experiment, Sargassum pacificum cover was compared in urchin manipulated coral bommies and non-manipulated bommies. Manipulated bommies experienced a statistically greater decrease in S. pacificum cover. However, the control bommies experienced almost no change, indicating that the increased density of urchins on a bommie caused an increased feeding rate.