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Title A Tale of Seahorses in Mindanao: Fractal Analysis
Posted by Sharon Rose Tabugo
Authors Sharon Rose Tabugo
Conference The Sixth International Conference on Biological Shape Analysis (ISBSA)
Abstract Seahorses had gained popularity in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and are considered as highly vulnerable species to overfishing and habitat destruction. Thus, there is a need to monitor populations. The Panguil Bay and Murcielagos Bay served as a home of two common seahorses in Mindanao, Philippines that were valuable to trading. This serve as an explorative study to look into the nature of seahorses in the areas. The aim of this study is to use imaging and fractal geometry to look into morphometric complexity patterns of the two common seahorse species, Hippocampus kuda and Hippocampus comes. Herewith, irregular non-euclidean objects are better described by fractal geometry and the measurable value is called the fractal dimension. Box-counting and Lacunarity method were performed with Fraclac v.2.5, and available as a plugin to ImageJ. The method was done to test whether significant differences in fractal dimension and lacunarity values can be species-specific and provide evidence of vulnerability. It is hypothesized that fractals are far from the equilibrium state and thus associated with chaos. Hence, high fractal dimensions have implications to vulnerability of species. High mean fractal dimension (DB) based on box-counting and high coefficient of variation (CV) of lacunarity method was associated with H. kuda (F) and H. comes (F). Both species are morphologically complex and vulnerable. Attributed differences can be due to variation of morphological complexity as they have adapted to their respective microhabitats.
Index terms / Keywords seahorses, fractal analysis, conservation, Hippocampus