Monitoring on the Health Condition of Tubipora musica (Stolonifera) using Colony Life-form

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Tubipora musica is soft coral (Alcyonacea) that have aragonite skeleton, so the presence of them become important to build the reef in the world (Veron,1995). The first publication for this species was reported by Linnaeus (1758) as red organ pipe coral that the colony has vertical tube and separated by lateral plates. The red color in their aragonite skeleton was caused by carotenoids or iron salts (Bergamonti et al., 2011). The living T. musica have 8 tentacles (sub class octocorallia) and usually have 3 morphotypes of varying the polyp structure.

First, has long curving tentacles, uniform shape, and short pinnules. Second, polyps have feathery tentacles with no pinnules near the polyp mouth and shorter pinnules in the distal of tentacles. Third, the polyps have tentacles with short pinnules and the appearance of soft tissue waving with water motion (Haverkort-Yeh et al., 2013).

The coral growth generates different morphologies in their colonies, there were six coral growth form have been known, encrusting, sub-massive, massive, branching, foliose and soliter (English et al.,1997). Scleractinian coral have many growth forms reflect the conditions where they growth. For example, the small branching coral usually can be found in the low wave energy and massive growth form can be easily to adapted in high current energy with hump or doom shaped (Edinger and Risk, 2000; Kaandorp et al., 2011; Tomascik et al., 1997).

The growth form of coral also will influence the coral metabolism, such as the photosynthesis, respiration and circulation of organic matter (Meesters etal., 1997). T. musica has two types of growth form that probably caused by adaptive process from environmental such as light availability, sedimentation, current and competition. Two types of them were massive and thick encrusting.

The massive T.musica will abbreviate as octocorallia massive (OM) if colony stand alone and skeleton have similar dimension; octocorallia thick encrusting (OTE) if colony flatter (Veron, 1995). T. musica is benthic modular organism such as scleractinian coral that can survive event part of this module has been death, this called as partial mortality. The partial mortality itself has been manifested by lesions where part of surface colony death or lose their living tissue.

Many cause of the lesions such as, diseases, bleaching, sedimentation, fish grazing and rubble or substrate covered. The size of coral colonies, growth form and physical stress from environment also influence the number of lesions (Meesters et al., 1997). Physical damage to coral colonies can be an indicator to measure the health of coral colonies(Chabanet et al., 2005; Dinsdale and Harriott, 2004).

Meesters et al., (1997) divided two characteristics of physical damage on coral colonies as natural process in living benthic substrate. Type I: rounded lesions usually located above the coral colony are the result of bites from fish such as Chaetodontidae and Scaridae. Type II is a part of a colony that has many deaths and small part coral tissue living remaining in the colony, this is usually caused by competition, grazing and covered by sediment or sand.

T musica hereditary used for drug like in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa that always mixed the traditional drugs with 25 g of T. musica. Arab countries, used T. musica as a mixture of abdominal pain medication, cardiac reinforcement, eye diseases and to stop hemorrhage (Lev, 2003; Lev and Amar, 2002), this tradition started since 10th century (Lev, 2006).

Recently, T. musica used for decorative or curio and for aquarium needs that was famous since 1950s (Bruckner, 2001) while in 2001, 2006, 2007 and 2008 the live trade of T. musica was increase to 2000 pieces (Wood et al., 2012). The purpose of this study was to determine the health of T. musica colonies by viewing lesion characteristics and we address in this questions 1) Are lesion will effect on coral health? 2. What life form of T. musica affect the adaptability of the environment?

About six sites have been surveyed on Lirang Island, Southwest Maluku (Maluku), Indonesia, which is a remote area. A 1 × 100 m belt transect was laid at each site and then counted and recorded T. musica (H) health conditions, less than 50% fracture colonies (B1), more than 50% fracture colonies from the colony (B2) area and death (D ). The life forms of T. musica are also divided into two categories: massive (OM) and thick hardening (OTE).

Monitoring was carried out throughout April 2016. The results showed a total of around 379 T. musica colonies which were dominated by OM (328 colonies) rather than OTE (51 colonies). The total health (H) of T. musica is 87.33%, damage 1 (B1) is 2.63%, damage 2 (B2) is 6.33% and death (D) is 3.69%. In this monitoring, the etiology of the disease in T. musica colonies may not be caused by microbial bacteria, but more attention to other causes, such as mechanical lesions or sedimentation.

To find out more details about Monitoring on the Health Condition of Tubipora musica (Stolonifera) using Colony Life-form can be read in the following research.

Judul: Monitoring on health condition of Tubipora musica (Stolonifera) using colony life-form

Authors: Oktiyas Muzaky Lutfi, Muhammad Arif Asadi, Teguh Agustiadi and Agoes Soegianto *

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