Fortes, Miguel .
Seagrass Biogeographic Affinities in the Seas of East Asia Revisited: 1988 to 2008.
The 23 seagrass species so far known from 13 countries bordering the seas of East Asia were subjected to Cluster and Principal Components Analyses. The results reveal two major clusters: (1) Cluster A, bounded in the north and west by the South China Sea, in the southwest, by the lower part of the Gulf of Thailand, in the east by the Philippine Sea, and in the south by the Indonesian Seas. This cluster includes Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, and the Philippines; and (2) Cluster B, distinctly located in the waters of the adjacent Yellow Sea, East China Sea and Sea of Japan. This cluster includes China, DPR Korea, Republic of Korea, and Japan. The separation of Brunei from Cluster A and the greater dissimilarity values between DPR Korea and Republic of Korea and both their dissimilarities with China and Japan reflect more the lack of data than the true pattern of distribution of the species in the area. Seagrass biogeography and migration patterns in East Asia are best explained by vicariance, although accretion tectonics, which brings about distribution by accumulation and juxtaposition of communities, cannot be ruled out. In general, the results of the study update and confirm the findings of Fortes (1988) involving the Indo-West Pacific affinities of Philippine seagrasses.
The results of the study pose both as a significant contribution and a major challenge to regional coastal seagrass conservation planning. The clusters identify sets of sites that together represent the overall biodiversity of the relevant area. However, the consequences of decisions involved in the application of the concept have not yet been tested.
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1 - University of the Philippines, Marine Science Institute CS, 1 Velasquez St., University of the Philippines Campus, Diliman, Quezon City, Quezon, Rizal, 1101, Philippines
Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Topics
Date: Wednesday, July 30th, 2008
Time: 9:30 AM