Productivity of a coral reef using boundary layer and enclosure methods

W. R. McGillis, C. Langdon, B. Loose, K. K. Yates, Jorge Corredor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


The metabolism of Cayo Enrique Reef, Puerto Rico, was studied using in situ methods during March 2009. Benthic O2 fluxes were used to calculate net community production using both the boundary layer gradient and enclosure techniques. The boundary layer O2 gradient and the drag coefficients were used to calculate productivity ranging from -12.3 to 13.7 mmol O 2 m-2 h-1. Productivity measurements from the enclosure method ranged from -11.0 to 12.9 mmol O2 m-2 h-1. During the study, the mean hourly difference between the methods was 0.65 mmol O2 m-2 h-1 (r2 = 0.92), resulting in well-reconciled estimates of net community production between the boundary layer (-33.1 mmol m-2 d-1) and enclosure (-46.3 mmol m-2 d-1) techniques. The results of these independent approaches corroborate quantified rates of metabolism at Cayo Enrique Reef. Close agreement between methods demonstrates that boundary layer measurements can provide near real-time assessments of coral reef health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberL03611
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 1 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)


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