Effects of Physicochemical Properties of Water on Distribution of Coral Reefs in Kish Island, Iran
The present study sought to determine the interactions between coral reefs and physicochemical properties of water (depth، temperature، salinity، turbidity، dissolved oxygen، pH، chlorophyll a، and water current velocity) and seabed type and slope in Kish Island، Iran. The study area was divided into 19 zones (eight zones with and 11 without corals). Physicochemical properties of water for each zone were extracted from previous studies over the past years. In summer 2010، field sampling of each zone was also performed using a conductivity، temperature، and depth (CTD) instrument. Non-metric multidimensional scaling (nMDS) and cluster analysis (CA) were then conducted to assess the dispersion of coral reefs and to determine the similarity of coral and non-coral zones، respectively. Finally، the similarity percentage (SIMPER) test was carried out in PRIMER 5 software to identify parameters differentiating coral and non-coral zones. The results of nNMDS analysis revealed differences in spatial distribution of coral and non-coral zones. According to CA results، the coral zone in the north of the island (CR6) and the non-coral zone in the northeast of the island (NC2) were similar in terms of physicochemical properties of water. However، they were significantly different from other coral and non-coral zones (p < 0. 01). SIMPER test showed seabed slope، water current velocity، salinity، depth، temperature، and turbidity to have the greatest contributions in the dissimilarity between coral and non-coral zones (25. 06%، 23. 38%، 13. 88%، 13. 82%، 8. 69% and 8. 61%، respectively).