Seamounts, Ridges, and Reef Habitats of American Samoa

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Book Chapter

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bathymetry, geomorphology, submarine volcanism, seamounts, American Samoa, South Pacific, coral reefs, coral reef habitat

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The Samoan volcanic lineament in the southwest Pacific Ocean extends from the large subaerial islands of Savai’i and Upolu (independent nation of Samoa) in the west to the small island of Ta’u (American Samoa) in the east. Hart et al. in addressing the longstanding debate as to whether or not the Samoan volcanic lineament is plume driven, along with the direction of the lineament's age progression, established a Western Samoa Volcanic Province (WSVP) and an Eastern Samoan Volcanic Province (ESVP). A new compilation of available multibeam data reveals 51 previously undocumented seamounts, and delineates major submarine rift zones, eruptive centers, and volcanic plateaus. Moving from a regional to local scale, and with regard to specific coral reef habitats, we report the results of three Pisces V submersible dives to the submerged flanks of Tutuila, with overall objectives of species identification of deep water fish and invertebrates, determining the base of extensive live bottom as well as relations to any prior benthic terrain classifications at 100 m and deeper.

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Citation / Publisher Attribution

Seamounts, Ridges, and Reef Habitats of American Samoa, in P. T. Harris & E. K. Baker (Eds.), Seafloor Geomorphology as Benthic Habitat: GeoHAB Atlas of Seafloor Geomorphic Features and Benthic Habitats, Elsevier, p. 791-806