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Experimental Data on Construction and Erosion of Orbicella Coral Reefs in the Florida Keys, U.S.A.

April 16, 2019

The USGS Coral Reef Ecosystems Studies project provides science that helps resource managers tasked with the stewardship of coral reef resources. This data release contains data on coral-growth rates for Orbicella sp. coral colonies grown at five sites on the Florida Keys reef tract from 2013 to 2015, survey data for census-based carbonate budgeting at Hen and Chickens Reef (Islamorada, Florida), and time-series photographs taken of permanent markers used to measure reef erosion at Hen and Chickens Reef in 1998 and 2015. The time-series photographs document a loss in coral-reef elevation over 17 years at this site. The data will be used to inform resource managers of the capacity for future growth (or loss) of reefs dominated by genus Orbicella in the Florida Keys so that the reef ecosystem might be better understood and managed. The datasets included here were interpreted in Kuffner and others (2019).

Kuffner, I.B., Toth, L.T., Hudson, J.H., Goodwin, W.B., Stathakopoulos, A., Bartlett, L.A., and Whitcher, E.M., 2019, Improving estimates of coral reef construction and erosion with in situ measurements: Limnology and Oceanography, https://doi.org/10.1002/lno.11184.