sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Boats for Sale MarineBusiness-World Sail-World Racing Cruising Int Magnetic Is RW Photo Gallery FishingBoating
Sail-World.com : Where in the world are our strongest corals?
Where in the world are our strongest corals?

'Seventy Islands, Palau - One of several Rock Islands chains in Palau'    Cohen's Lab

The Palauan archipelago is a composed of more than 250 islands. Among these are about 200 known as the Rock Islands, due their tough limestone composition. These islands form a series of semi enclosed bays south of Palau's most populated island, Koror. These bays are thriving with wildlife and the coral cover and diversity is spectacular, especially when considering the environmental conditions in these areas.

Reef-building corals, build make their skeleton from calcium carbonate (limestone), specifically the aragonite mineral form of calcium carbonate. How difficult it is for them to make aragonite is largely dependent on a quantity called the aragonite saturation, which essentially corresponds to how favorably this mineral can form under the current conditions and is very sensitive to the pH of the water.

Decades of research on coral health and optimal conditions for coral growth indicate that corals can make their skeletons more easily and more quickly when the pH is more basic as opposed to more acidic, or correspondingly when the aragonite saturation is higher. The relationship between coral growth and pH is particularly relevant in the context of global climate change and rising atmospheric concentrations of CO2 - as CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere increase, more CO2 becomes dissolved in the oceans, a process that decreases the pH of the water (commonly referred to as ocean acidification), and decreases the aragonite saturation. Combined with other stressors such as increased temperatures, increased pollution and nutrient input, impacts from overfishing and coastal developments, corals face an increasing number of threats.

Corals in Nikko Bay, Palau -  H. Barkley  

In Palau's Rock Islands, the pH and the aragonite saturation is much lower than in the surrounding outer reefs, however, the corals in these bays show no reduction in growth despite living in conditions we would normally deems stressful for their growth. Our lab made this discovery a few years ago and has been studying the corals in these bays ever since, trying to understand just how they are able to defy our expectations. Why can they thrive under these conditions? Have they always been able to do so? Are the populations in these bays different from those in other regions of Palau? Is there genetic exchange between these resistant corals and other populations in Palau's outer reefs and beyond?

In our current expedition will have a rare opportunity to reach some of the islands farthest from Palau's mainland, such as Helen Reef, the southernmost of Palau's reefs and Kayangel, the northern most. We will characterize environmental conditions at these new sites - for instance, are there other low pH sites we've yet to uncover? Furthermore, we also want to study connectivity between different areas of Palau. By taking tissue samples from corals at multiple locations, we can use genetic techniques to study gene flow between different regions, this can tell us if corals in a particular environment, such as the low pH Rock Islands, are genetically isolated from other populations and have perhaps adapted to these conditions over time. If they are not isolated, it can tell us where these resistant populations could have dispersed to in the past, indicating those areas may show resistance when conditions become stressful in the future. Knowledge that is very important in making adequate management decisions.

We will tour Palau for almost three weeks, stopping at fifteen sites. We are quite fortunate to have use of the vessel M/V Alucia, for our work during this expedition, without which access to the farther reefs like Helen and Kayangel would have been unfeasible.

Anchors away.

Merand is the Palauan word for coral. The Cohen's Lab current expedition to Palau seeks to understand why some
of Palau's coral can thrive in low pH conditions.


For more info, click here


by Hanny Rivera - Cohen's Lab


  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=125861

12:35 PM Fri 22 Aug 2014GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.







Sail-World Cruising News - local and the World







You scratched my seagrass! by Steven Katona, Newport, RI
















Dangerous conditions forecast for NSW boaters by Roads and Maritime Services,


The Galley Guys take on the Vancouver International Boat Show by Greg Nicoll with Frank Leffelaar and Friends,


Are you ready to enter that marina? by Captain John Jamieson, Florida
















Remember to properly dispose of obsolete distress beacons by Australian Maritime Safety Authority,




World ARC fleet bids farewell to Bali by World Cruising Club,




















Multihull Central: Record sales, Outremer blog, Regattas and much more
World ARC crews in Bali
Could your sailing navigation use a tune-up?
Images of marine sunsets by Tripadvisor
4th Multihull Solutions Whitsunday Rendezvous an outstanding success
Citizen science model proposed to fill fundamental ocean data gap
Evans Head volunteers rescue charter boat in dawn operation
Ocean Cruising Club celebrates 60th Anniversary with record gatherings
Shedding light on the life of former lighthouse keepers + Video
Southport Yacht Club celebrates opening of 68th season *Feature
Marine Auctions adds new recruits
2014 Auckland on Water Boat Show: Coming up at the end of September
The Boat Cookbook
Indian Ocean-wide tsunami exercise to test readiness
Blue Planet Odyssey - Aventura makes landfall at St John’s
Round the World racer joins Southern Pacific Inflatables
New exhibition explores role of Royal Australian Navy in WWI
18 anti-piracy weapons for ships to fight pirates
World ARC fleet now arriving in Bali
Skysol Frame Large: A new shading solution for sunroofs
Governor’s Cup Yacht race - Great for cruisers and racers alike   
EU Naval flagship- frigate assist yacht twice maydays in pirate zone   
Australian Maritime Safety Authority coordinates rescue of solo sailor   
An offer a Galley Guy cannot refuse   
Dinghy Safety - More to think about   
Southport Yacht Club’s annual Sail Past and Blessing of Fleet Ceremony   
World ARC fleet to enter Indian Ocean for the first time   
Pack this sailing gear for 'hands-free' lighting   
New earlier date for ICA’s Cruising Prep Seminar proving popular   
World ARC fleet departs Darwin under full sail   
Techno-Sciences chosen for AUS/NZ MEOSAR Infrastructure Deployment   
Marine Rescue crew saves cruiser in trouble in rough conditions   
2014 Mandurah Boat Show - Third largest boat show in Australia   
Blue Planet Odyssey - Northwest Passage gate opens   
World ARC participants tour Litchfield National Park   
Africa Europe Challenge introduces 'Spectator's Package'   
Wanted youth circumnavigators on a 'Voyage of Imagination'   
The crowd-pleasing comforts of catamaran cruising   
Death by Dinghy   
'Sailing Stones' of Death Valley seen in action for the first time   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph, contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW Cru SH
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT