Doctor of Oceanography and Coastal Sciences (POCS)


Oceanography and Coastal Sciences

Document Type



Most equatorial eastern Pacific (EEP) corals can reproduce year-round (Glynn et al. 1991, 1994, 1996, 2000, 2008, 2011, 2012, Colley et al. 2000). Gamete development occurs in several cycles throughout the year with a variable number of maturation cycles and presumably spawning events. The length of the breeding seasons in these corals is species-specific and can be locale-specific. The long-term reproductive dataset of these prior studies was utilized for Diaseris distorta, Pavona gigantea and Psammocora stellata (Colley et al. 2000, Glynn et al. 1996, 2012). Gametogenic trends are investigated in association with seasonal change of several environmental variables in the Galapagos Islands, Ecuador and the Gulf of Panama, Panama including sea temperature (change), precipitation, cloud cover, wind speed, PAR, insolation and photoperiod. Correlations of gametogenesis with the investigated environmental variables were performed, as well as repeated measures logistic regressions of coral reproduction to fine tune the strongest relationship of gametogenesis with an environmental variable for each species. Findings concluded that in the Galapagos Islands, temperature change was most strongly associated with gametogenesis of all three species (Pavona gigantea reproductive activity was most strongly associated with photoperiod (Psammocora stellata was tightly associated with all warm-wet season values (PoC) and lower PAR with warmer sea temperatures in the Gulf of Panama (27-28.5 oC) may create the ‘right conditions” for coral gametogenesis, while also avoiding stress in this equatorial environment.



Committee Chair

Walker, Nancy



Available for download on Saturday, May 23, 2026