Current Corals News and Events

Current Corals News and Events, Corals News Articles.
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Applying environmental genomics to coral conservation
Coral reefs are extremely sensitive to temperature, making them particularly vulnerable to the effects of climate change. But some corals seem able to adapt. Researchers from EPFL and the French National Research Institute for Sustainable Development (IRD) studied a reef in New Caledonia, combining approaches from environmental science and genomics to characterize their adaptive potential and develop targeted conservation strategies. (2020-11-12)

A better understanding of coral skeleton growth suggests ways to restore reefs
In a new study, University of Wisconsin-Madison physicists observed reef-forming corals at the nanoscale and identified how they create their skeletons. The results provide an explanation for how corals are resistant to acidifying oceans and suggest that controlling water temperature, not acidity, is crucial to mitigating loss and restoring reefs. (2020-11-09)

New study uses satellites and field studies to improve coral reef restoration
A recent study published in Restoration Ecology by researchers from Arizona State University's Center for Global Discovery and Conservation Science (GDCS) found evidence that particulate organic carbon levels are one of the most important factors in determining coral outplant survival. (2020-11-09)

Light pollution at night severely disrupts the reproductive cycle of corals
Studying the reproductive cycle of two coral species from the Indo-Pacific Ocean over the course of three months, researchers found that light pollution caused delayed gametogenesis and unsynchronized gamete release. To shed light on the findings, they created a first-of-its-kind global map that highlights areas in the world most threatened by nighttime artificial light. This light pollution impact assessment can help incorporate an important variable in coral reef conservation planning near areas of human activity. (2020-11-05)

Coral larvae movement is paused in reaction to darkness
A new study published in Scientific Reports shows that coral larvae swimming in seawater behave in such a manner so as to temporarily stop swimming due to reduced light, especially blue light. Researchers think that this behavior may play a role in determining where corals settle. (2020-11-04)

Crown-of-thorns eat themselves out of house and home
A world-first study on the Great Barrier Reef shows crown-of-thorns starfish have the ability to find their own way home -- a behavior previously undocumented--but only if their neighborhood is stocked with their favorite food: corals. The starfish will consume available Acropora and ultimately eat themselves out of house and home before dispersing in search of new feeding grounds. (2020-11-03)

Genomic data 'catches corals in the act' of speciation and adaptation
A new study led by the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa revealed that diversity in Hawaiian corals is likely driven by co-evolution between the coral host, the algal symbiont, and the microbial community. (2020-11-02)

Coral researchers find link between bacterial genus and disease susceptibility
Corals that appear healthy are more prone to getting sick when they're home to too many parasitic bacteria, new research at Oregon State University shows. (2020-10-28)

Cauliflower coral genome sequenced
A newly sequenced coral genome offers tools to understand environmental adaptation. (2020-10-27)

Elkhorn coral actively fighting off diseases on reef, study finds
MIAMI--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. (2020-10-23)

NYU Abu Dhabi study discovers how some single-cell organisms control microbiomes
Large swaths of single-celled eukaryotes, non-bacterial single-cell organisms like microalgae, fungi or mold, can control microbiomes (a collection of tiny microbes, mostly bacteria) by secreting unusual small molecules around their cells, maintaining host survival and ecological success, according to a new study by NYU Abu Dhabi (NYUAD) Assistant Professor of Biology Shady Amin. (2020-10-19)

Deep-sea corals reveal secrets of rapid carbon dioxide increase as the last ice age ended
The Southern Ocean played a critical role in the rapid atmospheric carbon dioxide increase during the last deglaciation that took place 20,000 to 10,000 years ago, an international team of researchers report in Science Advances. The chemical signatures of nitrogen and carbon in the coral fossils revealed that ocean carbon sequestration decreased as phytoplankton failed to devour macronutrients supplied by upwelling currents in the Southern Ocean and trap carbon dioxide in the deep ocean. (2020-10-16)

Deep sea coral time machines reveal ancient CO2 burps
The fossilised remains of ancient deep-sea corals may act as time machines providing new insights into the effect the ocean has on rising CO2 levels, according to new research carried out by the Universities of Bristol, St Andrews and Nanjing and published today [16 October 2020] in Science Advances. (2020-10-16)

Was Hong Kong once a coral reef paradise?
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. (2020-10-15)

Scientists shed new light on viruses' role in coral bleaching
Scientists at Oregon State University have shown that viral infection is involved in coral bleaching - the breakdown of the symbiotic relationship between corals and the algae they rely on for energy. (2020-10-14)

The Great Barrier Reef has lost half its corals
Populations of corals on the Great Barrier Reef have halved in the past three decades - in both shallow and deeper water, and across virtually all species - especially branching and table-shaped corals. These were the worst affected by record-breaking temperatures that triggered mass bleaching in 2016 and 2017. And the Great Barrier Reef was hit with mass bleaching again only a few months ago. (2020-10-13)

Extinctions linked to new assemblages of species
As the world undergoes profound environmental change, identifying and protecting 'novel' communities of species can help prevent extinctions within vulnerable ecosystems. Scientists outline a world first method to detect 'novel' communities of species across all ecosystems. (2020-10-08)

A factor limiting recovery from bleaching in corals
A joint research team has examined the effect of pre-exposure to heat stress on the capacity of symbiotic algae to infect cnidarian hosts using the Aiptasia (sea-anemone)-zooxanthellae (algae) model system. They discovered that the symbiotic algae lose their capacity to infect the host once they are exposed to heat stress. These results suggest that recovery from bleaching can be limited by the loss of symbiont infectivity following bleaching-inducing heat stress. (2020-10-02)

Coral's resilience to warming may depend on iron
How well corals respond to climate change could depend in part on the already scarce amount of iron available in their environment, according to a new study led by Penn State researchers. (2020-09-30)

Is it one or two species? The case of the cluster anemones
Their scientific name is ''Parazoanthus axinellae'' and they are among the most fascinating corals of the Mediterranean Sea. A genetic analysis suggests they may belong to two different species and, therefore, there could be two types of cluster anemone. Researchers claim this may lead to more effective conservation strategies against the negative impact of climate change on this sea population (2020-09-29)

Ocean acidification puts deep-sea coral reefs at risk of collapse
Deep-sea coral reefs face challenges as changes to ocean chemistry triggered by climate change may cause their foundations to become brittle, a study suggests. (2020-09-17)

Can pumping up cold water from deep within the ocean halt coral bleaching?
Rising ocean temperatures cause marine heat waves, which place stress on living coral animals, as well as the photosynthetic algae on which they depend for energy. A new study led by Yvonne Sawall, assistant scientist at the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences (BIOS), is showing potential for the use of artificial upwelling (AU)--or the application of cooler, deep water--as a way to mitigate the thermal stress on corals. (2020-09-16)

Project Phoenix: DNA unlocks a new understanding of coral
A new study challenges more than 200 years of coral classification. Researchers say the 'traditional' method does not accurately capture the differences between species or their evolutionary relationships. They developed a new genetic tool to help better understand and ultimately work to save coral reefs. (2020-09-14)

Shedding light on coral reefs
New research published in the journal Coral Reefs generates the largest characterization of coral reef spectral data to date. These data are an initial step in building a quantitative understanding of reef water clarity. With these data, coral reef scientists can begin to develop models to address fundamental questions about how reefs function, such as how much light reaches the various reef zones or how ecological zonation on reefs might be driven by light absorption. (2020-09-11)

Great Barrier Reef 'glue' at risk from ocean acidification
Scientists have suspected that increasing ocean acidity would weaken and thin the structures underpinning tropical reefs. Now they have irrefutable evidence dating back 30,000 years. (2020-09-02)

Novel technology for the selection of single photosynthetic cells
New research, published in the journal Science Advances, demonstrates how microfluidic technologies can be used to identify, isolate and propagate specific single photosynthetically active cells for fundamental industry applications and improved ecosystem understanding. (2020-09-02)

Warmer, acidifying ocean brings extinction for reef-building corals, renewal for relatives
A new study, published Aug. 31 in the journal Nature Ecology and Evolution, finds that reef-building corals emerged only when ocean conditions supported the construction of these creatures' stony skeletons, whereas diverse softer corals and sea anemones flourished at other times. Without a significant change to anthropogenic carbon emissions, the new findings present stark implications for the present and future of hard-bodied corals while suggesting a silver lining for the diversity of some of their softer-bodied relatives. (2020-08-31)

Ocean acidification causing coral 'osteoporosis' on iconic reefs
Scientists have long suspected that ocean acidification is affecting corals' ability to build their skeletons, but it has been challenging to isolate its effect from that of simultaneous warming ocean temperatures, which also influence coral growth. New research from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) reveals the distinct impact that ocean acidification is having on coral growth on some of the world's iconic reefs. (2020-08-27)

UBCO researcher uses computer modelling to predict reef health
A UBC Okanagan researcher has developed a way to predict the future health of the planet's coral reefs. Working with scientists from Australia's Flinders' University and privately-owned research firm Nova Blue Environment, biology doctoral student Bruno Carturan has been studying the ecosystems of the world's endangered reefs. (2020-08-25)

New tool for identifying endangered corals could aid conservation efforts
A newly developed genotyping ''chip''--the first of its kind for corals--allows researchers to genetically identify corals and the symbiotic algae that live within the coral's cells, a vital step for establishing and maintaining genetic diversity in reef restoration efforts. (2020-08-25)

Nutrients make coral bleaching worse
Nutrients can aggravate the already negative effects of climate change on corals to trigger mass coral bleaching. A study suggests ecosystem managers can reduce the impacts of coral bleaching by implementing strategies to reduce nutrient stress in areas subject to thermal stress. (2020-08-21)

Native Hawaiian tiger cowries eat alien invasive species
Researchers at the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa's Hawai'i Institute of Marine Biology, have discovered the Hawaiian tiger cowrie is a voracious predator of sponges. Among preferred sponge prey is the invasive Orange Keyhole sponge (Mycale grandis). (2020-08-18)

Surprising coral spawning features revealed
When stony corals have their renowned mass spawning events, in sync with the moon's cycle, colonies simultaneously release an underwater 'cloud' of sperm and eggs for fertilization. But how do the sperm and eggs survive several hours as plankton, given threats from predators, microbes and stresses such as warming waters? A Rutgers-led team has discovered some surprising features in coral sperm and eggs (collectively called gametes), according to a study in the journal PeerJ. (2020-08-18)

Effects of nutrient pollution in marine ecosystems are compounded by human activity
Nutrient pollution in the oceans caused by human activity can significantly impact marine life. The process results in an explosion of plant and algal life in the sea that disrupts delicate marine ecosystems and destroys marine habitats. However, a new review highlights that the problem can be exacerbated by other human actions, such as climate change. The article proposes an integrated solution that involves ecosystem management and includes practical steps to reduce nutrient pollution. (2020-08-17)

Exact climate data from the past
Corals and cave carbonates can reveal the temperatures that prevailed at the Earth's surface at the time they formed. An international team of geoscientists led by Goethe University Frankfurt, Germany, has developed a new method that makes it possible to identify whether the composition of these deposits was exclusively controlled by temperature, or if the formation process itself exerted an additional control. The new method allows scientists to determine past Earth surface temperatures more reliably. (2020-08-10)

Aquatic robots can remove contaminant particles from water
Scientists from WMG at the University of Warwick, led by Eindhoven University of Technology in the Netherlands, developed a 1cm by 1cm wireless artificial aquatic polyp, which can remove contaminants from water. Apart from cleaning, this soft robot could be also used in medical diagnostic devices by aiding in picking up and transporting specific cells for analysis. (2020-08-10)

Joint ASU-Hawaii state study reveals long-term human impacts on reef fish
In a new study investigating human impacts on resource fish biomass on the Island of Hawai?i, researchers from the Arizona State University Center for Global Discovery and Conservation Science (GDCS) and Hawai'i Division of Aquatic Resources (DAR) observed an alarming 45% decrease in fish biomass over a decade of surveys. The scientists proposed actionable solutions to mitigate future losses. The study was published today in Ecological Applications. (2020-08-05)

Coral reefs show resilience to rising temperatures
Rising ocean temperatures have devastated coral reefs all over the world, but a recent study in Global Change Biology has found that reefs in the Eastern Tropical Pacific region may prove to be an exception. (2020-07-23)

Crown-of-thorns enhance their growth by switching diets early
When juvenile crown-of-thorns starfish switch their diets from coralline algae to corals early after settlement, they exhibit enhanced growth rates for longer and will ultimately get much bigger. (2020-07-21)

Genetics could help protect coral reefs from global warming
The research provides more evidence that genetic-sequencing can reveal evolutionary differences in reef-building corals that one day could help scientists identify which strains could adapt to warmer seas. (2020-07-16)

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