First records of fish species at the Chesterfield-Bellona reef complex in the Coral Sea Marine Park

The Chesterfield-Bellona atolls and reefs are a vast reef complex located in the Coral Sea Marine Park, established in 2014 in the New Caledonian Economic Exclusive Zone. In 2013, the New Caledonia government supported the first assessment of fish and benthic habitats conducted over the entire area. The assessment provided a primary knowledge base for establishing the importance of these atolls in terms of biodiversity and fished resources. This comprehensive survey relied on an unbaited underwater video technique that enabled to collect 185 successful camera drops distributed over all shallow habitats in the atolls.

Video analysis revealed 18 fish species that had not been previously reported in this area. These included commercially important species: two species of snapper (Lutjanus monostigma and Lutjanus rivulatus) and an emperor (Lethrinus atkinsoni). Most of the new species observed displayed relatively low occurrences (< 5 individuals over 185 camera drops). They were observed in three habitats: i) live coral-dominated; ii) debris-dominated; and iii) sandy bottoms.


Reference of the survey:   CHESTERFIELD-BELLONA 2013:

Author(s) Pelletier DominiqueORCID1, 2, Powell Abigail2, Roman William2, Carpentier Liliane2
Affiliation(s) 1 : IFREMER, Dept Ecologie et Modèles pour l’Halieutique, F-44311 Nantes, France
2 : IFREMER, Unité Lagons, Ecosystèmes et Aquaculture Durable en Nouvelle-Calédonie, F-98897 Nouméa, Nouvelle-Calédonie
DOI 10.24351/78069
Date 2021-01-15
Temporal extent 2013/06/22 -2013/07/5
Species Parapercis xanthozona
Forcipiger longirostris (longnose butterflyfish)
Aluterus scriptus (scrawled filefish)
Scarus flavipectoralis
Grammatorcynus bilineatus
Arothron hispidus (bristly puffer, stripebelly puffer, white-spotted puffer)
Hemitaurichthys polylepis
Pseudobalistes flavimarginatus (yellowmargin triggerfish)
Chilomycterus reticulatus (spotfin burrfish)
Hologymnosus annulatus (ring wrasse)
Lethrinus atkinsoni
Lutjanus monostigma (one-spot snapper)
Lutjanus rivulatus (blubberlip snapper)
Centropyge loriculus
Paracanthurus hepatus (palette surgeonfish)
Balistoides viridescens (titan triggerfish)
Rhinecanthus lunula
Carangoides orthogrammus (island trevally)
Licence Etalab

How to cite 

Pelletier Dominique, Powell Abigail, Roman William, Carpentier Liliane (2021). First records of fish species at the Chesterfield-Bellona reef complex in the Coral Sea Marine Park. Ifremer.