Fish and aquatic news » Coral http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news The latest news from below the surface Wed, 23 Oct 2013 11:30:17 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.6.1 Fluorescent color of coral larvae predicts their future http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1386 http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1386#comments Sat, 29 Jan 2011 02:35:06 +0000 Anja http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/?p=1386 A young staghorn coral that fluoresce redder is less likely to settle and develop into coral polyps than young staghorn corals that fluoresce greener. This surprising discovery was made by assistant professor of biology Mikhail "Misha" Matz and his colleagues* at the Austin branch of the University of Texas.

The post Fluorescent color of coral larvae predicts their future appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
A young staghorn coral that fluoresce redder is less likely to settle and develop into coral polyps than young staghorn corals that fluoresce greener. This surprising discovery was made by assistant professor of biology Mikhail “Misha” Matz and his colleagues* at the Austin branch of the University of Texas.

“By simply looking at the color of a larval population, we may soon be able to say which larvae are going to be long-range dispersers and which will be short-range dispersers,” says Matz. “Under global warming, we expect a lot of evolution of this particular life history trait.”

The less likely a coral larvae is to settle, the more likely it is to disperse from its native reef and end up settling somewhere else. If global warming forces coral species to move to cooler regions in order to survive, this will naturally be an important trait.

In their study, Matz and his colleagues crossed different color morphs of the coral species Acropora millepora and subjected the offspring larvae to ground-up calcareous red algae. The ground-up algae is clue that tells the larvae that this is a place where it could settle.

The experiment showed that the larvae that displayed the redder fluorescent color of their parents were less likely to settle and turn into reef-building polyps than their greener siblings.

According to Matz, the correlation between settlement and fluorescence could be completely random. The genes that determine fluorescent color and the genes that control the organisms response to the ground-up red algae may simply be located next to each other in the chromosome and therefore be inherited together.

It is on the other hand possible that the color for some reason have a function to fill as this coral disperse and settle. Matz and hits colleagues will now proceed to investigate if this is the case or not.

Even if the correlation is completely random, the finding is still important since researchers can use the fluorescence as a marker when studying Acropora millepora larvae.

What is fluorescence and why are corals fluorescent?

Fluorescence is the emission of light by a substance that has absorbed light or other electromagnetic radiation of a different wavelength. The emitted light is usually of a longer wavelength than the absorbed light. From a human perspective, really striking examples of florescence occur when the absorbed radiation is invisible to the human eye while the emitted light can be seen.

Why corals are fluorescent and if it serves any particular purpose for them remains unknown.

“Bright, multicolored fluorescence of reef-building corals is one of the most spectacular and least understood visual phenomena in the ocean, and we still have no idea what purpose it serves”, says Matz. “But our discovery is a really good lead towards determining the function of fluorescence.”

The paper “Fluorescence of coral larvae predicts their settlement response to crustose coralline algae and reflects stress” has been published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

http://rspb.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/early/2011/01/22/rspb.2010.2344.short?rss=1#aff-1

* C. D. Kenkel, Integrative Biology Section, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, USA
M. V. Matz, Integrative Biology Section, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, USA
M. R. Traylor, Integrative Biology Section, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, USA
J. Wiedenmann, National Oceanography Centre, University of Southampton, Southampton, UK
A. Salih, School of Natural Sciences, University of Western Sydney, Penrith, New South Wales 1797, Australia

The post Fluorescent color of coral larvae predicts their future appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1386/feed 0
Team of Divers Cleans Up 7 tons of Harmful Waste http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1322 http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1322#comments Fri, 26 Nov 2010 02:03:04 +0000 Anja http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/?p=1322 A diving team from Kuwait has commented that this past Saturday that it had just completed their latest step in cleaning up 7 tons of harmful materials from the coral reef shelf of Qaruh island.

The post Team of Divers Cleans Up 7 tons of Harmful Waste appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
A diving team from Kuwait has commented that this past Saturday that it had just completed their latest step in cleaning up 7 tons of harmful materials from the coral reef shelf of Qaruh island.

Walid Al-Shattie, the Marine Operations chief of the team, has commented recently to KUNA that this latest step in the cleanup effort utilized a seventy ton crane to help lift the harmful materials above the coral reefs as well as made use of a truck and trailer to transport the materials once they hit land.

Al-Shattie added that the diving team also used airbags and large canvas sacks during their twenty day mission to aid in the efforts to pick up the hazardous material from the coral reefs, and relocate it to more appropriate places in the seabed.

He explained that the team made use of special nets around the island of Qaruh to help contain the hazardous materials until such a time as they could be removed by lifting.

He also noted that the members of the diving team were leery that they may run into some of the old military equipment left over from the Iraqi 1990 invasion, as some military equipment has already been found above the coral reefs at Qaruh and Umm Al-Maradim islands.

That aside, it is good to see that interest in protecting and cleaning up the areas of coral reefs, and even though the face some element of danger, the efforts of this diving team are very much appreciated.

The post Team of Divers Cleans Up 7 tons of Harmful Waste appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1322/feed 0
Marine Lab in Florida Releasing Coral Fragments to Help Restock Reef in Keys http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1219 http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1219#comments Tue, 19 Oct 2010 05:41:43 +0000 Anja http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/?p=1219 This past Wednesday, researchers at the Mote Marine Laboratory released four different kinds of coral at two different locations in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. This action, which was sanctioned by the Sanctuary officials and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, is supposed to help try out the practicality of using “test tibe” coral to restock the damaged or depleted reefs of the world.

The post Marine Lab in Florida Releasing Coral Fragments to Help Restock Reef in Keys appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary 300x194 Marine Lab in Florida Releasing Coral Fragments to Help Restock Reef in Keys

Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary

This past Wednesday, researchers at the Mote Marine Laboratory released four different kinds of coral at two different locations in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. This action, which was sanctioned by the Sanctuary officials and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, is supposed to help try out the practicality of using “test tibe” coral to restock the damaged or depleted reefs of the world.

One of the sites chosen for this momentous test, Mote, is utilizing coral grown in a local nursery to try and replenish stocks of stagorn coral. The second location was decided upon because it seemed to be especially hard done by with the cold snap running through, which caused a coildwater bleaching even this past January.

“Now is an especially good time to do this study because of the cold snap in January,” explained director of Mote’s Center for Aquaculture Research and Development, Dr. Kevan Main. The MCARD reared the coral fragments in partnership with Mote’s Center for Coral Reef Research at Mote’s Tropical Research Laboratory on Summerland Key. “During that cold event, many of the fragmented corals growing at the inshore release site were lost. This gives us an opportunity to see whether we can jump start the recovery of corals at this site with cultured fragments.”

Its good to see that some progress has been made to help the world get its reefs back in tip top form. As we all know, coral reefs are a vital part to the well being of the world’s oceans, and if they go, soon all life in the sea will go.. And we know where that leads….

The post Marine Lab in Florida Releasing Coral Fragments to Help Restock Reef in Keys appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1219/feed 0
Coral Facing Imminent Threat From Toxic Algae http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1190 http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1190#comments Mon, 11 Oct 2010 02:54:15 +0000 Anja http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/?p=1190 Blooms of toxic algae could possibly wipe out coral reefs.

The post Coral Facing Imminent Threat From Toxic Algae appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
reefsounds 300x143 Coral Facing Imminent Threat From Toxic Algae

Healthy reef

Blooms of toxic algae could possibly wipe out coral reefs.

Researchers who have been studying the coral reefs in the Gulf of Oman have sounded the alarm after a big algae bloom laid waste to an entire coral reef in just three short weeks.

Some ninety-five percent of the hard coral directal under the algae died off, and seventy percent fewer fish were found in the vicinity.

The algae grows rapidly and hog all the sunlight and oxygen which the coral need to survive.

Add in climate change, development along the coasts, overfishing and pollution and you have a rather bleak outlook for the coral reefs of the world.

The biggest threat facing the coral reefs is climate change, which has caused many coral bleaching events around the globe.

However, this latest discovery, which was published in the journal Marine Pollution Bulletin postulates that algal blooms are just as much a threat to the coral reefs.

Scientists from the United Nations University Institute for Water, Environment and Health had taken it upon themselves to study the environment of two different coral reefs in the Gulf of Oman.

After they finished up their first study, an algae bloom which measured over 500 square kilometers happened in the area.

After the scientists made a return visit some three weeks after the fact, they discovered that the coral under the bloom had been almost completely destroyed.

So, it appears that the coral is facing yet another threat, algae. Scientists are now working on a way to help the reefs, but since this is a new phenomena it might take some time.

The post Coral Facing Imminent Threat From Toxic Algae appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1190/feed 0
Resilient Reefs of Bonair Lend Hope to Dying Corals http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1163 http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1163#comments Tue, 05 Oct 2010 23:29:33 +0000 Anja http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/?p=1163 Researchers are taking a closer look at the reefs in the area, situated just north of Venezuela, to find out why it seems unaffected by the happenings which have killed off some eighty-five percent of the corals in the Caribbean since the seventies.

The post Resilient Reefs of Bonair Lend Hope to Dying Corals appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
Researchers are taking a closer look at the reefs in the area, situated just north of Venezuela, to find out why it seems unaffected by the happenings which have killed off some eighty-five percent of the corals in the Caribbean since the seventies.

In the past three decades, Caribbean coral has gone from sixty-five percent coverage to a paltry twenty percent coverage.

What with algae invasions and new diseases cropping up, much of the coral that stretches from Florida to Bonaire has been wiped out. It seems that the corals of Bonaire have been spared from the devastation, and scientists are scratching their heads looking for an answer.

Bonaire could hold the key to helping all coral survive. What with climate change, and oceans growing warmer, the corals of the ocean are in more peril than ever before, and researchers are frantically trying to find a way to save it. If the coral goes, so does a good supply of food.

“This means millions of people are losing an abundant supply of cheap, nutritious fish,” comments chief scientist of the Washington-based Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation, Andrew Bruckner.

Not only for food, but corals are used in construction materials, protection from waves and attracting tourists.

So by saving the coral, they will not only be saving some much needed food supply, but could also bring back tourism to the areas which have been damaged over the years, and get a good influx of tourist dollars as well, and it all rests with the Bonaire coral…

The post Resilient Reefs of Bonair Lend Hope to Dying Corals appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1163/feed 0
Nursery Grown Corals to be Planted On Forida Keys Reef: http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1138 http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1138#comments Wed, 29 Sep 2010 00:10:23 +0000 Anja http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/?p=1138 The only living coral reef in North America has really been put through a lot by humans, with the hellish effects of a booming population on mainland Florida as well as in the Keys, which is causing some coral to die and a lot of others to become distressed. Researcher are now focusing on a way to try and help repair the damage done, and even restore the reef to its previous glory.

The post Nursery Grown Corals to be Planted On Forida Keys Reef: appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
Elkhorn coral Nursery Grown Corals to be Planted On Forida Keys Reef:

Elkhorn Coral

The only living coral reef in North America has really been put through a lot by humans, with the hellish effects of a booming population on mainland Florida as well as in the Keys, which is causing some coral to die and a lot of others to become distressed. Researcher are now focusing on a way to try and help repair the damage done, and even restore the reef to its previous glory.

Researchers have been raising coral, which is still a living organism, in nurseries so that it can be easily moved into the ocean, with a minimum of fuss and muss. The plan is to begin with Davis Reef in Islamorada (purple island), which has been particularly hard done by, thanks to growth, shipping, and other man made messes.

Bill Sharp, a researcher over at Florida Fish and Wildlife Research Institute, has explained that the work to be performed on Davis Reef could aid scientists in better understanding how nursery-grown coral can come to the aid of natural coral.

Researchers also hope that the project will help bring back the long-spined sea urchins, which normally use the coral reefs for shelter.

Not only does the reef provide shelter for a myriad of life in the sea, living reefs are also a major draw in terms of tourism, attracting divers and snorkelers from all over the place, year in and year out.

If the reef could somehow have the damage done to it repaired, and the age of the dam is not too much, then coral reefs can regenerate over time, however it can take decades, hundreds or even thousands of years to replenish to their natural states

The post Nursery Grown Corals to be Planted On Forida Keys Reef: appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1138/feed 0
Largest Destroyer Sunk To Become Part of Artificial Reef off the Coast of N.J. http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1107 http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1107#comments Tue, 21 Sep 2010 04:55:57 +0000 Anja http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/?p=1107 The U.S. Navy Destroyer Arthur W. Radford, a massive 563 footer, is due to be sunk 30 miles from the shore of Cape May County next month. This is the largest ship thus far which has been sunk to become part of an artificial reef system.

The post Largest Destroyer Sunk To Become Part of Artificial Reef off the Coast of N.J. appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
USSArthurWRadford Largest Destroyer Sunk To Become Part of Artificial Reef off the Coast of N.J.

USS Arthur W Radford

The U.S. Navy Destroyer Arthur W. Radford, a massive 563 footer, is due to be sunk 30 miles from the shore of Cape May County next month. This is the largest ship thus far which has been sunk to become part of an artificial reef system.

It is expected that this ship will become the star of the show, and attract many inquisitive scuba divers and fishermen at the Deljerseyland Reef. The reef is the brainchild of New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland to help not only help the environment, but to also promote tourism in the area. Rather than sell the hulk off for scrap, they instead raised the estimated value of $800,000 from private parties interested in supporting the project, and will be trying to do some good with it. The $800,000 raised is being split by the three states, whom will all benefit from the artificial reef project.

Some question the logic behind doing such a project, however it is a very good move, both economically and politically. The green groups will be happy, as it is helping out the environment, and the tax payers will be happy, as the added tourism and influx of funds generated by the reef, should help to ease the drain on their wallets.

The destroyer is currently sitting at the Philadelphia shipyard and awaiting the torpedoes which will place it into its new watery home at the bottom of the sea.

The post Largest Destroyer Sunk To Become Part of Artificial Reef off the Coast of N.J. appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1107/feed 0
Marine Reserve Plans Saved by Billionaire http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1082 http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1082#comments Tue, 14 Sep 2010 22:17:00 +0000 Anja http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/?p=1082 Well, it's nice to see there is still some decency in the world today. A Billionaire from Switzerland has used some of their vast resources to help save plans to create the largest marine reserve in the world, and alleviate the pressures placed upon it from public spending cuts.

The post Marine Reserve Plans Saved by Billionaire appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
Chagos island Marine Reserve Plans Saved by Billionaire

Chagos Islands

Well, it’s nice to see there is still some decency in the world today. A Billionaire from Switzerland has used some of their vast resources to help save plans to create the largest marine reserve in the world, and alleviate the pressures placed upon it from public spending cuts.

Government officials are currently engaged in talks over a 3.5 million GBP deal for Ernesto Bertarelli, America’s Cup-winning yachtsman, to help fund the efforts to police the zone around the Chagos Islands.

The area which is due to be protected, dubbed the MPA, is going to cover quite a bit of area. The proposal is to cover somewhere around 250,000 square miles of sea around the archipelago in the Indian Ocean and include a “not take” reserve which is going to ban commercial fishing.

The plan was approved last April by David Miliband, then foreign secretary, even though there were complaints that the government was not taking the territory’s exiled population into consideration.

You see, the Chagos have been in the midst of a heated debate for a long time now, due to the fact that the islanders were exiled to make way for the Diego Garcia US airbase, and are continuing legal proceedings to return to their homes.

There are still other concerns that the project may fail due to the lack of private funding to offset the amount they would lose from tuna fishing licenses.

So, hats off to the billionaire for trying, and hopefully it will be pushed through. It isn’t often a billionaire steps aside and tries to do something good in the world.

The post Marine Reserve Plans Saved by Billionaire appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1082/feed 0
Scientists are Boring Into Ancient underwater Coral Reef http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1063 http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1063#comments Fri, 10 Sep 2010 04:00:44 +0000 Anja http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/?p=1063 An expedition to the outermost edges of the Great Barrier Reef in Australia has yielded the motherlode – pieces of an absolutely ancient ancestor to the vast, amazing ecosystem.

The post Scientists are Boring Into Ancient underwater Coral Reef appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
An expedition to the outermost edges of the Great Barrier Reef in Australia has yielded the motherlode – pieces of an absolutely ancient ancestor to the vast, amazing ecosystem.

The pieces of the reef which were brought back are believed to have been living some 20,000 years ago, at the peak of the last glacial period, a a time when the Earth was about 9 degrees Fahrengeit cooler than it is today, and the great cities of the United States were buried under 2 mile sheets of ice.

By studying these ancient samples of coral, researchers believe they might just be able to accurately view how the levels of the sea have changed over the past few millennium, this is crucial to predicting how sea levels might change in the coming years.

Actually getting to the ancient samples proved to be a a bit difficult as it lies both on and below the floor of the ocean.

Researchers spent two months aboard the research vessel the Greatship Maya, using a humongous drilling apparatus, and using specially designed earplugs, to bore 34 holes deep into the ancient parts of the reef, at three prime locations. They pulled up 730 feet of coral samples. It is these samples, which will prove most fruitful in ongoing studies.

All in all it was a success, and now mankind is one step closer to unraveling the mysteries of our planet, and the conundrums of the deep blue sea.

The post Scientists are Boring Into Ancient underwater Coral Reef appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1063/feed 0
Sea Urchins Put To Test in Cleaning Up Algae http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1014 http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1014#comments Fri, 03 Sep 2010 03:00:35 +0000 Anja http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/?p=1014 The coral reefs off of Hawaii are being smothered by tons of algae, and efforts have been made to help solve this dilemma. The answer comes from an unlikely source.. Sea Urchins.

The post Sea Urchins Put To Test in Cleaning Up Algae appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
sea urchin Marco Busdraghi Sea Urchins Put To Test in Cleaning Up Algae

Sea urchin - By: Marco Busdraghi

The coral reefs off of Hawaii are being smothered by tons of algae, and efforts have been made to help solve this dilemma. The answer comes from an unlikely source.. Sea Urchins. Sea urchins, commonly known as the “cows of the sea”, are being used along side a new underwater vacuuming system aptly named the “Super Sucker” in an attempt to finally start getting the algae off the reef and get them healthy again.

Researchers from the state Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Aquatic Resources are pleased to announce that the project has been a success, as it has been using sea urchins alongside the Super Sucker for the past year in Kaneohe Bay.

“It exceeded our exectations,” Tony Montgomery, a state aquatic biologist commented. “It actually worked better than we thought.”

The project began in August of last year, where divers were manually removing the offending algae from the reef. Once harvested, the algae was then sucked up using the super sucker.. On another part of the reef however, a bunch of sea urchins were left to do their business. The results were that these cows of the sea were quite the eating machines. While the project is being deemed a success there is still a lot of algae to be removed, and Montgomery is remaining casually optimistic. “We will see how they do with thousands of pounds of algae to eat,” He said.

The post Sea Urchins Put To Test in Cleaning Up Algae appeared first on Fish and aquatic news.

]]>
http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/news/lib/1014/feed 0