SedPods: a low-cost coral proxy for measuring net sedimentation

Coral Reefs
By: , and 



Sediment derived from impaired watersheds is a major stressor to adjacent coral reefs globally. To better understand stresses generated by specific processes and events, many coral reef scientists seek to collect physical samples of settling particles and obtain reproducible information about net rates of sediment accumulation on coral reefs. Yet, the tools most commonly used to gather this information, sediment tube traps, only provide information on the gross accumulation of sediment at a site, in that all particles are effectively trapped within the container, unlike what a coral surface experiences. To address the need for an improved measurement of net particle accumulation on coral surfaces, we propose using recoverable sediment pods (SedPods) that can be constructed from readily available materials for under US $20. These devices are inexpensive, easy to fabricate, and allow for capture of particles over a given time span. The particles can then be used for laboratory analysis and accurate calculation of net accumulation rates on a coral surface proxy. In an experiment in Hanalei Bay, HI, we found that net sediment accumulation on rectangular SedPods was an order of magnitude less than gross accumulation in nearby conventional tube traps.

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title SedPods: a low-cost coral proxy for measuring net sedimentation
Series title Coral Reefs
DOI 10.1007/s00338-012-0953-5
Volume 32
Issue 1
Year Published 2013
Language English
Publisher Springer
Contributing office(s) Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center
Description 5 p.
First page 155
Last page 159
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