Keystone Porgy Species (Sparidae) Overcome the Alien Randall's Threadfin Bream (Nemipterus randalli) for Catch Balance in Space on An Oligotrophic Levant Shelf or Vice Versa?
Since 2008 spatiotemporal and ecological distributions of porgies (sparid, all indigenous fish) were examined in the presence or absence of Randall's threadfin bream, Nemipterus randalli in the present study area. Seasonal fish and environmental parameters samplings were conducted at three transects of the fishing (nMPA) or non-fishing (MPA) regions on an oligotrophic shelf (Levantine Sea) in 2014-2015 for understanding management and ecology of the porgies’ catches. Of 13 sparid fish determined during the present study, five species are rarely found. There were no seasonal significant differences in densities of the sparid fish with or without the alien nemipterid fish. However, there were differences in the densities by the bottom depths, the regions, and soft and hard bottoms vegetated by Caulerpa spp and meadow, respectively. Ecologically, fish assemblages and faunistic characters of the sparid fish were highly variable when excluding the N. randalli as highlighted and follows; i) seasonal variation occurred and ii) the depthwise community assemblages became irregular. N. randalli seemed to balance the sparid catch attributed to the biomass-abundance ratio in the ecosystem or vice versa in this trophically sensitive gulf (ultra-oligotrophic) of the eastern Mediterranean Sea.Show more [+] Less [-]