Surveyed 15 April 2010.
The back of Centipede Reef is sheltered from the prevailing wind and sea conditions found within the lagoon of the Great Barrier Reef. Manta tow surveys were conducted on the reef slope. The reef slope is generally steep dropping off into approximately 10m of water to a gently sloping reef base composed mainly of sand, rubble and hard coral. The reef structure has many features including overhangs, bommies and gullies.
The benthic community was dominated by coralline/turf algae, but sponge, soft coral and hard coral were also common. Hard coral cover on the reef back was low with no one coral genus dominant. The dominant coral lifeform was massive, but other forms such as branching, digitate and tabulate corals were also present in decreasing order of abundance. Coral bleaching was not present.
The fish abundance on the back of Centipede Reef was low. Conspicuous groups of reef fishes included damselfish, parrotfish, surgeonfish and baitfish. No crown-of-thorns starfish were observed on the back of Centipede Reef .