coral reef news 2020

October 18, 2020 | 0 Comments | Uncategorized

Researchers from The University of Hong Kong's School of Biological Sciences and The Swire Institute of Marine Science, have for the first time investigated the historical presence of coral communities in the Greater Bay Area, revealing a catastrophic range collapse and loss of diversity that occurred in the last several decades. occurred again this year along the whole length of the reef. Researchers at the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies in Queensland, Australia, found that numbers were declining across the board. This site uses cookies to assist with navigation, analyse your use of our services, and provide content from third parties. HKU researchers reveal the historic range and diversity of corals in the Greater Bay area for the last 5,000 years. "The Reef 2050 Plan, jointly developed with the Queensland Government is the centrepiece of Australia's Reef protection efforts. “I believe a lot of corals are going to get through this bottleneck, they’re not going to go extinct, they’re going to figure out a way to pace with climate change, so long as we give them some room.”. Right now, we’re in the ugly beginning of that process,” Webster says. Using Cybulski's historical data to infer the appropriate steps needed, the team is now returning corals such as Acropora that previously thrived in Hoi Ha, back to their proper home. Meanwhile, in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, which has lost half of its corals in the past five years, an innovative project is putting the tourism industry, which is 90% reliant on the reef, at the heart not just of reef protection, but of actively healing the reef on which it depends. That’s according to a new report from the Australian Research Council’s Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, published this week, which found that mass bleaching events are irreversibly devastating small, medium and large coral populations along the 2,300 kilometre length of the reef. Mr Dietzel said the impact of bleaching in 2020 still had not been accounted for and the overall picture of the reef's health could be worse than the current evidence suggested. Bleaching happens when triggers including warmer water causes coral to expel the algae living in its tissues. Overfishing hits reefs in a number of ways, including by removing herbivores, such as parrotfish, whose grazing constrains coral-damaging algae. "But it's very difficult to say at this stage. Your email address is used only to let the recipient know who sent the email. The reef is at risk of losing its coveted World Heritage status because of ocean warming — fueled by climate change — damaging its health. During a coral bleaching event, reefs lose so much zooxanthellae that they become white and experience massive die-offs. Colton says: “We estimate we’ve prevented around 28.5m gallons of sewage from being directly discharged on to the reef. It can recover if the algae reenters but if the conditions which caused the bleaching persist this is less likely to happen. Now, Suggett’s team have designed a coral clip that’s safer than glue – and much faster to apply. "Reproduction essentially scales the size of the colony, so if you're losing all the big ones, that means you have less reproduction going on, and therefore less baby coral," he said. The lead author of the study said the impact of bleaching in 2020 is not yet known. A healthy fire coral in Bermuda, left, and a bleached one. Timing is everything, though. All rights reserved. US Covid fatality rates highest among top 18 developed countries, Asking questions about protein structure determination. Available for everyone, funded by readers, Scientists are using 3D-printed hexagons to create artificial reefs after a super-typhoon brought devastation, Queensland MP writes report urging Coalition to increase efforts to reduce emissions, especially in Covid-19 recovery response, Ian Sample speaks to marine biologist Prof Maoz Fine about his surprising research on the relationship between increasing ocean temperatures and the Red Sea’s coral reefs, Worldwide study finds Australia among nations with highest shark numbers, but 34 out of 58 nations have half what was expected. Second, the greatest loss was of the ecologically important yet highly-sensitive staghorn corals (Acropora), which now only lives in an area about 50% smaller than its historic range. Thank you for taking your time to send in your valued opinion to Science X editors. All Rights Reserved. “It took several years for us to get a permit to experimentally move heat-tolerant corals from hot mangrove lagoons out to the reefs, a journey that polyps could make naturally,” says Suggett. This year, February saw the highest monthly sea temperatures ever recorded on … It was the most widespread bleaching on record, impacting swathes of the southern reaches of the reef for the first time. The decline occurred in both shallow and deeper water, and across virtually all species. © 2020 Guardian News & Media Limited or its affiliated companies. From coral farming to 3D printing, scientists are using novel methods to save a vital part of our ecosystem, Sun 18 Oct 2020 07.05 EDT When coral dies or is destroyed, the reef shrinks,a problem exacerbated by current sea level rise, making it harder for new corals to grow because their habitat is depth-specific. parrotfish, whose grazing constrains coral-damaging algae, ways to improve the resilience and persistence of coral reefs, heat-adapted corals can thrive in new environments, they thrive better as the water heats, growing faster, corals can pass on their adaptive strategies to their offspring, attract fish populations back to the area, 75% of tropical reefs were hit by bleaching. Jian Wen QIU and Dr. James XIE, several striking conclusions were revealed. In addition, climate change is intensifying periodic weather phenomena, such as El Niño warming events, increasing the temperatures reefs experience and reducing the recovery interval between bleaching events. Led by Ph.D. candidate and National Geographic Explorer Jonathan Cybulski, the team revealed what coral genera were present in the past well before major human impacts, and these include: Acropora, Montipora, Turbinaria, Psammacora, Pavona, Hydnophora, Porites, Platygyra, Goniopora and Faviids. The content is provided for information purposes only. “We’re building resilience in the human community and that translates to resilience in the coral reef community as well.”. The hope is that by building resilience, coral reefs and the communities that depend on them will be able to adapt and survive if the climate stabilises. Previously, the bacteria covered about 1% of reefs, but that has grown to 20 to 30% in some places. "It's very frustrating to see that there's not much done," he said. The information you enter will appear in your e-mail message and is not retained by Phys.org in any form. Some will do better than others – some already are – and scientists are trying to work out why in a bid to build resilience elsewhere. Get weekly and/or daily updates delivered to your inbox. Hong Kong's terracotta tile army marches to the rescue for coral, Great Barrier Reef envoy Warren Entsch urges fellow Liberal MPs to do more on climate change, How Red Sea 'supercorals' are resisting the climate crisis – podcast, Sharks 'functionally extinct' at 20% of world's coral reefs as fishing drives global decline, Coral discovered in uncharted Danish waters – in pictures, How coral transplants could rescue Turkey's threatened reefs, Coalition backs 'cloud-brightening' trial on Great Barrier Reef to tackle global heating. Mr Dietzel, who is completing a PhD on reef observations, says the signs of reef degradation are being ignored, especially by some politicians. To help visitors and residents protect Maui’s coral reefs, the nonprofit Maui Nui Marine Resource Council has installed new coral reef information signs at 39 Maui beaches. And, if the worst happens, it should help people adjust to living with an extinct reef. A study released last year found that the rate at which the reef was adding new coral had fallen by 90 per cent after two bleaching events in 2016 and 2017 in  different areas. While four mass bleaching events up to 2017 were covered by the latest research, the damage to coral species from bleaching in early 2020 is yet to be assessed. You can unsubscribe at any time and we'll never share your details to third parties. The expense and time-consuming nature of such projects means they’ve been largely dismissed, but the method has proved worth the efforts in the Caribbean: this year, Acropora saved from the brink of extinction actually began natural spawning. Separate lab research reveals that corals can pass on their adaptive strategies to their offspring. Indeed, this historical research has already played a critical role in protecting and restoring corals locally. Candidate Ms Vriko YU, also of the Baker Lab at HKU, pioneered a coral restoration project in Hoi Ha Wan Marine Park. Malin Pinsky, associate professor at Rutgers University, New Jersey, who led one recent study, says: “We found that a diversity of reef types provides the variety that evolution depends on. "As corals grow naturally, parts of them will break off and fall to seafloor becoming a part of the sediment. Possibilities of being able to break known biological limitations, Science X Daily and the Weekly Email Newsletter are free features that allow you to receive your favorite sci-tech news updates in your email inbox. Caribbean coral reef decline began in 1950s and 1960s from local human activities Apr 22, 2020 Historical impacts of development on coral reef loss in the South China Sea Some 75% of tropical reefs were hit by bleaching during a global ocean heatwave between 2014 and 2017. We urge you to turn off your ad blocker for The Telegraph website so that you can continue to access our quality content in the future. The Telegraph values your comments but kindly requests all posts are on topic, constructive and respectful. The clip just degrades over time.”, Coral reefs support a quarter of all marine life and the livelihoods of a billion people, The scale of the operation has meant the team have had to create nurseries to supply a stock of corals, by propagating parent lines. ", Larger species are the worst affected, according to researchers, who found that they had disappeared almost entirely from the far northern outskirts of the reef. "I think the most likely scenario is that we'll see a complete change in the species that we'll see there," he said.

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