Seagrasses In The Chagos Archipelago
- Thalassodendron ciliatum (Forsk.) den Hartog is more extensively distributed in the Chagos Archipelago than previously reported, and a second seagrass, Halophila decipiens, Ostenfeld is reported from a single locality. Extensive meadows of Thalassodendron are confined to the submerged banks to the north of the Great Chagos Bank and to the lagoon reef-flat of the Diego Garcia atoll to the south. Vast areas of apparently suitable substrates around the other atolls and the few islands on the Bank itself are totally uncolonised by seagrasses. High water temperatures caused by coincidence of extreme low water spring tides and intense midday insolation are suggested as the main reason for the restricted distribution of Thalassodendron around the atolls and islands whilst extreme geographical isolation may explain the very restricted seagrass flora.
- Drew E .
- seagrasses, seagrass, Thalassodendron ciliatum, Halophila decipiens