Living on the edge: Vulnerability of coral-dependent fishes in the Gulf

Jack R. Buchanan, Friedhelm Krupp, John A. Burt, David A. Feary, Gina M. Ralph, Kent E. Carpenter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In the Gulf, multiple human impacts and recurrent bleaching events have resulted in serious declines of coral assemblages, particularly in near-shore areas. However, the degree to which the extinction risk of coral-dependent fishes is impacted by these coral declines has been uncertain. Using primary literature and expert knowledge, coral-dependent fishes of the Gulf were identified and species-specific data on the regional distribution, population status, life history characteristics, and major threats were compiled to determine their likelihood of extinction under the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species' Categories and Criteria. Due to the limited area and degraded and fragmented nature of coral assemblages in the Gulf, all coral-dependent fishes (where data was sufficient to assess) were listed at elevated risk of extinction. Cross-boundary collaboration among Gulf States is necessary for effective management and protection of coral assemblages and their associated communities within this globally important region.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)480-488
Number of pages9
JournalMarine Pollution Bulletin
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 30 2016


  • Arabian Gulf
  • Coral assemblages
  • Extinction risk
  • IUCN Red List
  • Marine conservation
  • Persian Gulf

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oceanography
  • Aquatic Science
  • Pollution


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