Pacific Science Volume 51, Number 2, 1997

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Pacific Science is a quarterly publication devoted to the biological and physical sciences of the Pacific Region.


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Now showing 1 - 9 of 9
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    Note on New Bivalve Records for Easter Island
    (University of Hawaii Press, 1997-04) Trego, Kent D.
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    Abundance and Diets of Rats in Two Native Hawaiian Forests
    (University of Hawaii Press, 1997-04) Sugihara, Robert T.
    Snap traps were set and monitored in two native Hawaiian rain forests on Maui, Hawai'i, to determine the relative abundances, distributions, and diets of rodents. Black rats (R. rattus), Polynesian rats (R. exulans), and mice (Mus musculus) were abundant throughout the mesic to wet forest habitat in both areas from 1600 to 2000 m elevation during both summer and winter trapping periods. Invertebrates, particularly insect larvae, were the most frequently found and abundant food item in the stomachs of both rat species. Consumption of these prey by rats was higher in winter than in summer. Black rats ate more fruits, seeds, and other vegetation than did Polynesian rats. More information about the life history, ecology, and behavior of rats in native Hawaiian forests is needed to document their impact on endemic ecosystems and to develop effective control techniques.
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    Striped Skinks in Oceania: The Status of Emoia caeruleocauda in Fiji
    (University of Hawaii Press, 1997-04) Zug, George R. ; Ineich, Ivan
    A rediscovered population of Emoia caeruleocauda from the Fiji Islands is compared with populations from Papua New Guinea, the Caroline Islands, and Vanuatu. Morphometrically, females from all populations are somewhat smaller than males, although males are significantly larger only in head length and width, and hindlimb length. Females and males do not appear dimorphic in scalation. Interpopulation comparison shows the populations to differ from one another in morphometry and scalation. In morphometry females and in scalation males and females of Fiji and Vanuatu and those of the Carolines and Papua are more similar to one another than each member of a pair is to members of the other pair. These patterns of variation suggest that the Fijian population of E. caeruleocauda is a native one and not introduced.
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    Additions to the Rust Fungi of Hawai'i
    (University of Hawaii Press, 1997-04) Gardner, Donald E.
    In a 1989 publication, the 74 species of rust fungi (order Uredinales) known to occur in Hawai'i were listed, based on newly collected material; herbarium specimens, principally those at the Bernice P. Bishop Museum (BISH); and information provided by F. L. Stevens in his 1925 publication on Hawaiian fungi. Stevens had noted an underrepresentation of this group in Hawai'i, which he attributed to the archipelago's isolation from continental landmasses. Since the time of the 1989 publication, 16 additional rusts have been recognized in Hawai'i. These include both recently introduced species, such as Coleosporium plumeriae Pat. on plumeria, and those recently discovered, such as Puccinia rugispora Gardner and P. rutainsulara Gardner on endemic Rutaceae. New host and location records and other important updating information on this well-defined group of fungi in Hawai'i are also included.
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    Coral Endolithic Algae: Life in a Protected Environment
    (University of Hawaii Press, 1997-04) Shashar, N. ; Banaszak, A.T. ; Lesser, M.P. ; Amrami, D.
    Endolithic algae inhabiting skeletons of living corals appear to be adapted to an extreme environment created by the coral. However, measurements on three coral species from the genus Porites revealed that these corals provide several modes of protection to the algae as well. High concentrations of ultraviolet (UV)-absorbing compounds, mycosporine-like amino acids (MAAs), were found in the tissues of all corals examined, but they were not detected in extracts of the endolithic algae. Coral tissues and skeleton filter 93.98-99.5% of the ambient UV radiation and thus shade the endolithic algae from this potentially damaging radiation. In addition endolithic algae are largely relieved from grazing pressure by herbivorous fish, because only 4% of fish bites on Porites corals resulted in exposed endolithic algae. Thus, the coral skeleton provides a refuge to the endolithic algae from some of the environmental pressures normally experienced by free-living algae on the reef.
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    Checklist of Reef Fishes from Taiping Island (Itu Aba Island), Spratly Islands, South China Sea
    (University of Hawaii Press, 1997-04) Chen, Jeng-Ping ; Jan, Rong-Quen ; Shao, Kwang-Tsao
    A total of 49 families and 399 species of fishes was recorded from the reef area around Taiping Island (Itu Aba Island) in the Spratlys (Nansha Islands), located at 114°21'-114°23' E, 10°22'-10°23' N. Data were collected by underwater observation, specimen identification, and photography during our survey of 19-23 April 1994. A checklist, including previous records, of 50 families and 421 species was compiled. If all midwater pelagic species are taken into account, the number of fish species occurring at Taiping Island is well over 450, a figure below that anticipated for a reef island located close to the equator and Indo-Australian diversity center. Limited reef area and recent reef degradation may be the principal causes of the disparity. Czekanowski similarities for eight regions around Taiwan and in the South China Sea show that the reef fish fauna of Taiping Island most closely resembles that of Green Island, then Orchid Island, Tungsha (Pratas Island), Hsiaoliu- chiu, southern Taiwan, Penghu, and northern Taiwan in that order. The fish fauna of the western coast of Taiwan, which has a predominantly sandy environment, is most different from that of Taiping. The results suggest that the fish fauna of Taiping Island originated by larval dispersal from the Kuroshio Current as is probably the case for southern Taiwan and its adjacent islets. However, 42 species found in this survey, of which 11 are probably undescribed, are not known from the waters around Taiwan. Most of the fish species (95.7%) at Taiping Island are widely distributed, particularly in the Indo-Pacific Region. Fewer than 20 species are restricted in their distribution.
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    Disjunct Distributions of Halobates (Hemiptera: Gerridae) in the Pacific Ocean
    (University of Hawaii Press, 1997-04) Cheng, Lanna
    Five species of Halobates are specially adapted to a pelagic life. They all occur in the Pacific Ocean, each with a well-defined zoogeographical range. Only two species were caught in a series of samples collected between Hawai'i and Tahiti: H. sericeus Eschscholtz, with an amphitropical distribution, and H. micans Eschscholtz, occupying the equatorial zone separating the northern and southern populations of the former. This disjunct distribution pattern may be maintained by zonal equatorial current systems. Although mixing of the two species may occur during seasonal weakenings of the currents, the two populations of H. sericeus appear to be quite separate, with little or no possibilities of genetic exchange.
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    Interactions between Acanthaster planci (Echinodermata, Asteroidea) and Scleractinian Corals at Kona, Hawai'i
    (University of Hawaii Press, 1997-04) Chess, James R. ; Hobson, Edmund S. ; Howard, Daniel F.
    Annual assessments of reef communities at Kona, Hawai'i, from 1985 to 1995 determined that the corallivorous sea star Acanthaster planci preferred as prey the smaller colonies of Pocillopora meandrina over the far more abundant Porites compressa and P. lobata. This finding came from three distinct settings: a Reef-Top habitat, where large (> 15 em) colonies of Pocillopora meandrina were dominant; a Reef-Face/Boulder habitat, where living scleractinians-mainly an encrusting form of Porites lobata-covered <5% of the substrate; and a CoralRich habitat, where living scleractinians-mainly Porites compressa and a massive form of P. lobata-covered >95% of the substrate. Although a corallivore, A. planci was most numerous on the reef face and adjacent boulders, where corals were fewest. There it fed mainly on colonies of P. meandrina, even though this species represented < 1% of the sparse coral coverage. Virtually all P. meandrina colonies in that habitat were < 10 em in diameter, and all seen eaten by A. planci there were <5 em. The sea star was less numerous where corals were most abundant, and there it fed on species essentially in accordance with their relative abundance in the environment. A strong inverse relationship in occurrence between the sea star and small P. meandrina colonies on the reef face and adjacent boulders indicated that this favored prey was a limited resource and that sea-star predation prevented it from becoming established in that habitat.
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    51:2 Table of Contents - Pacific Science
    (University of Hawaii Press, 1997-04)
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