Niche differences in co-occurring cryptic coral species (Pocillopora spp.)

Erika Johnston, Alex Wyatt, James Leichter & Scott Burgess
Cryptic species that are morphologically similar co-occur because either the rate of competitive exclusion is very slow, or because they are not, in fact, ecologically similar. The processes that maintain cryptic local diversity may, therefore, be particularly subtle and difficult to identify. Here, we uncover differences among several cryptic species in their relative abundance across a depth gradient within a dominant and ecologically important genus of hard coral, Pocillopora. From extensive sampling unbiased towards morphological...
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5 downloads reported since publication in 2021.

These counts follow the COUNTER Code of Practice, meaning that Internet robots and repeats within a certain time frame are excluded.
What does this mean?