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Assessing the Coral Reef Fish Biodiversity in the Al-Wajh Region of the Northern Red Sea, Saudi Arabia

Assessing the Coral Reef Fish Biodiversity in the Al-Wajh Region of the Northern Red Sea, Saudi Arabia

Faisal Alsaaq

Faculty of Maritime studies, King Abdulaziz University, P.O Box 80401, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

 
* Corresponding author: falsaaq@kau.edu.sa

ABSTRACT

This study presents the current status of coral reef fish biodiversity in the Al-Wajh region, focusing on both near shore and offshore areas. A comprehensive survey was conducted at 30 different stations, encompassing coastal and offshore locations. A total of 117 fish species belonging to 31 families were identified during the survey, with an overall abundance of 20,810 individuals observed. The fish assemblages in the area exhibited a balanced representation by all functional groups across different trophic levels, indicating a healthy state. Of particular interest were the families Chaetodontidae (butterfly fishes) and Serranidae (Groupers), known as reliable indicators of reef health and effective predators, respectively, as they were adequately represented. The family Labridae exhibited the highest number of species (16), followed by Scaridae (13). Overall, the assessment revealed the healthy nature of the Al-Wajh region in terms of fish stock, providing valuable insights for conservation and management efforts.

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Pakistan Journal of Zoology

February

Pakistan J. Zool., Vol. 56, Iss. 1, pp. 01-501

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