Nick Russell and Mike Maracic

Variegated Sea Urchin Cover Variability
and Predation

Throughout Discovery Bay, it can be
noticed that in different regions of the bay, Variegated Sea Urchin
populations will vary, and they will also cover themselves with
different materials found in their near-by environment. The bay was
divided into three different regions: A, B, and C (Just outside the
Mangroves, at the reef crest, and along the jetty) in order to study
these changes. In each area, Variegated Sea Urchins were collected,
as long as all the material that they were covering themselves with.
The mass and area that this material was covered in was then recorded
to see that the Urchins population was the smallest in region C, but
Urchins in this region were found to have the highest mass and
surface area of covering material on them. The most predation was
also found to occur in region C, while the most variability in
predation occurred at the Reef Crest in region B. It was believed
that Turtle Grass would account for the highest percentage of area
covered on each Urchin, however, Coral Debris was found to account
for the highest numbers.  

Urchin collection.

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