Coasts drown as coral reefs collapse under warming and acidification — ScienceDaily

A new study shows the coastal protection coral reefs currently provide will start eroding by the end of the century, as the world continues to warm and the oceans acidify.

A team of researchers led by Associate Professor Sophie Dove from the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies at The University of Queensland (Coral CoE at UQ) investigated the ability of coral reef ecosystems to retain deposits of calcium carbonate under current projections of warming and ocean acidification.

Calcium carbonate is what skeletons are made of — and it dissolves under hot, acidic conditions. Marine animals that need calcium carbonate for their skeletons or shells are called ‘calcifiers’. Hard corals have skeletons, which is what gives reefs much of their three-dimensional (3D) structure. It’s this structure that helps protect coasts — and those living on the coasts — from the brunt of waves, floods and storms. Without coral

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The ‘smell’ of coral as an indicator of reef health — ScienceDaily

You might not normally think about what corals smell like — or how the smell changes during heat stress. However, that is what researchers from the University of Technology Sydney (UTS), the University of Sydney and Southern Cross University set out to investigate on the Great Barrier Reef.

Every organism releases a distinct mix of volatile gases that makes up their smell and we are learning that these “smells” can tell us a lot about health. Some individual gases that make up the overall smell even have the ability to influence how an organism copes with stress, and once released from reefs, these gases can affect atmospheric processes.

Despite their importance, these volatile gases have received little attention in tropical coral reefs. This study is the first to explore the overall “smell” of healthy and stressed corals, identifying a distinct chemical diversity.

The research, led by Dr Caitlin Lawson in

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Securing a Future for the World’s Coral Reefs

RIYADH, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Nov. 18, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Prof. Carlos M. Duarte, a professor in Marine Science at the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, KAUST, held a media briefing during the Summit Week of the Saudi G20 Presidency to talk about Securing a Future for the World’s Coral Reefs in the G20 International Media Center in Riyadh.

Professor Duarte highlighted the need for international collaboration as key, as no single nation has the capacity to reverse the threat to coral reefs alone.

Professor Duarte, said:

“The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is committed to the conservation of coral reefs and learning from the resistance of the coral reefs in the Red Sea to damage to be able to share the lessons that we have learnt with the rest of the world but we can’t do that alone

“We need a global partnership

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scientists say Florida reefs have lost nearly 98% of coral

The United States’ coral reefs are in fair condition, according to a recent reef condition status report, but vulnerable to decline. Scientists estimate that along the coast of Florida, where degradation is most severe, perhaps as little as 2% of original coral cover remains.



a fish swimming under water: Photograph: Wilfredo Lee/AP


© Provided by The Guardian
Photograph: Wilfredo Lee/AP

The report, released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency (Noaa) and the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science last week, assesses reefs along the Atlantic and Pacific coasts, from the US Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico to Guam, Hawaii and American Samoa. It is the first of its kind to do so using standardized monitoring data on a national scale. Analyzing records from 2012 to 2018, researchers identify ocean warming and acidification, coral disease and fishing as ongoing threats to coral reefs, indicating a “dire outlook” for these ecosystems.



a fish swimming under water: A parrotfish is swims over a dead coral reef in the Florida Keys national marine sanctuary near Key West, Florida.


© Photograph: Wilfredo Lee/AP
A parrotfish is

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Coral Reproduction Being Disrupted By Experimental Ship Fuel Leaked In Mauritius

As controversy continues to surround the experimental ship oil that was spilled across 125 square kilometers of Mauritius’ coral lagoons this August, new evidence is emerging of the long term impacts from this oil.

There are fears that this type of oil could cause irreversible damage to Mauritius delicate coral reefs, critical for most of the island’s biodiversity, artisanal fishing communities, tourism as well as coastal

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Vital role of coralline red algae for coral reefs — ScienceDaily

Coral reefs are hotspots of biodiversity. As they can withstand heavy storms, they offer many species a safe home, and at the same time, they protect densely populated coastal regions as they level out storm-driven waves. However, how can these reefs that are made up of often very fragile coral be so stable? A team of researchers from Friedrich-Alexander Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU) and the University of Bayreuth have now discovered that a very specific type of ‘cement’ is responsible for this — by forming a hard calcareous skeleton, coralline red algae stabilise the reefs, and have been doing so for at least 150 million years.

The wide variety of life they support is immediately apparent on images of tropical coral reefs. Their three-dimensional scaffolding provides a habitat for a large number of species. However, the skeletons of the coral are often so fragile that they would not be able to

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Australian scientists find huge new healthy coral reef off northern coast

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Australian scientists found a detached coral reef on the Great Barrier Reef that exceeds the height of the Empire State Building and the Eiffel Tower, the Schmidt Ocean Institute said this week, the first such discovery in over 100 years.

The “blade like” reef is nearly 500 metres tall and 1.5 kilometres wide, said the institute founded by ex-Google boss Eric Schmidt and his wife Wendy. It lies 40 metres below the ocean surface and about six kilometres from the edge of Great Barrier Reef.

A team of scientists from James Cook University, led by Dr. Robin Beaman, were mapping the northern seafloor of the Great Barrier Reef on board the institute’s research vessel Falkor, when they found the reef on Oct. 20.

“We are surprised and elated by what we have found,” said Beaman.

He said it was the first detached reef of that size to

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Findings showed coral has core immune response regardless of disease type — ScienceDaily

As the world enters a next wave of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, we are aware now more than ever of the importance of a healthy immune system to protect ourselves from disease. This is not only true for humans but corals too, which are in an ongoing battle to ward off deadly diseases spreading on a reef.

A new study led by researchers at the University of Miami (UM) Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science looked at the immune system of elkhorn coral (Acropora palmata), an important reef-building coral in the Caribbean, to better understand its response to diseases such as white band disease and rapid tissue loss.

In the experiment, healthy corals were grafted to diseased ones. After one week, the corals were analyzed to study the coral’s overall gene expression in response to disease, if they exhibited an immune response, and whether there were different signatures of

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