This dataset accompanies "Spatio temporal variation in octocoral assemblages along a water quality gradient in the northwestern region of Cuba" . Sampling units were quadrats of 1 m2 (each 1 x 1 m), positioned by a random-systematic design at 10 m depth on the rocky-coral substrate. The number of colonies of octocoral species in thirteen fore reefs was counted to determine the composition, richness and abundance (expressed as density) of octocorals for the period from 2008-2015. Density of six species that most influenced spatial variation of octocoral assemblage structure was compared . Species richness of octocorals was determined in each reef and for the 2008-2015 period. The accumulated species richness was calculated based on 100 randomizations without replacement. This dataset can be used in meta-analysis studies on spatial variations of the structure of octocoral assemblages related to anthropogenic activities and climate variability in the Caribbean Sea, as well as, experimental studies on thresholds to specific pollutants.
- composition and density of octocorals
- fore reefs
- octocoral assemblages
- zooxanthellate octocoral richness