Monitoreo de la ictiofauna usando grupos taxonómicos superiores en el Parque Nacional Cabo Pulmo, México
Romeo Saldívar-Lucio & Héctor Reyes-Bonilla


Ichthyofauna monitoring using higher taxa in Cabo Pulmo National Park, México. The uses of biological indicators allow to save time, resources and staff efforts when monitoring programs are conducted. The reef fishes are among the species with biggest potential as indicators since they are conspicuous, easy to identify in the field and have ecological and economical importance. The objective of this study was to evaluate the usefulness of higher taxa to predict fish ecological indices in Cabo Pulmo reef. We generated multiple stepwise regression equations with species abundance data grouped at genera and family levels as factors, and using ecological indices (H´, J´, ?*) as dependent variables. To test the efficiency of the models, the expected indexes were compared with those observed in the field during independent test surveys. Results showed that all models were highly significant, and the best fit occurred at genus level to H´, while those used for ?*, based on family data level, were less precise. The proportion of variables required to apply prediction models of any ecological index never exceeded 41% of the total taxa (genera or families). In conclusion, the use of regression methods to determine higher taxa indicators is adequate and represents a good potential to be used in monitoring programs. In addition, the use of genera and families as indicators provide logistic benefits as training for monitors is less intense and expensive. Finally, the use of expected-observed comparisons to measure the quality of the evaluations can be useful for managers in order to interpret and communicate results of the scientific endeavors to the society, so they in turn can participate and help to improve and facilitate long-term monitoring at Cabo Pulmo National Park.


El uso de indicadores biológicos es una herramienta útil para la descripción de las comunidades y permite ahorrar recursos en programas de monitoreo. Con el fin de evaluar el potencial bioindicador de grupos taxonómicos superiores en el Parque Nacional Cabo Pulmo, México, se construyeron modelos de regresión múltiple por pasos con valores de abundancia agrupados a nivel género y familia como predictores, mediante el uso de variables dependientes, los índices ecológicos de diversidad (H’), equidad (J’) y distintividad taxonómica (?*). Posteriormente se compararon los resultados de los modelos contra los valores de los índices ecológicos observados en un muestreo independiente. Los resultados mostraron que todos los modelos fueron altamente significativos; los valores más altos del coeficiente de determinación se obtuvieron en las regresiones aplicadas a H’, mientras que las usadas por ?* fueron las menos precisas. Los resultados sugieren que los modelos predictivos aquí generados son susceptibles de ser aplicados en un programa de monitoreo. Este estudio sugiere la implementación de un programa de monitoreo a largo plazo basado en bioindicadores de la estructura comunitaria de peces en el Parque Nacional Cabo Pulmo, el cual combine la precisión con la facilidad de obtención de datos.