sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery

 

Sail-World.com : Parts of the Great Barrier Reef go from Doom to Boom

Parts of the Great Barrier Reef go from Doom to Boom

'Lobophora dominates coral reef'    ARC Centre of Excellence Coral Reef Studies ©    Click Here to view large photo

Marine scientists say they are astonished at the spectacular recovery of certain coral reefs in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef Marine Park from a devastating coral bleaching event in 2006.

That year high sea temperatures caused massive and severe coral bleaching in the Keppel Islands, in the southern part of the GBR. The damaged reefs were quickly smothered by a single species of seaweed – an event that can spell the total loss of the corals.

However, a lucky combination of rare circumstances meant the reefs were able to achieve a spectacular recovery, with abundant corals re-established in a single year, says Dr Guillermo Diaz-Pulido, from the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies (CoECRS) and the Centre for Marine Studies at The University of Queensland.

Dr Diaz-Pulido explains that the rapid recovery is due to an exceptional combination of previously-underestimated ecological mechanisms.

'Three factors were critical. The first was exceptionally high re-growth of fragments of surviving coral tissue. The second was an unusual seasonal dieback in the seaweeds, and the third was the presence of a highly competitive coral species, which was able to outgrow the seaweed.

'But this also all happened in the context of a well-protected marine area and moderately good water quality', said Dr Diaz-Pulido.

'It is rare to see reports of reefs that bounce back from mass coral bleaching or other human impacts in less than a decade or two,' he adds.

Bleached corals -  ARC Centre of?nid=56275 Excellence Coral Reef Studies ©  

'The exceptional aspect was that corals recovered by rapidly regrowing from surviving tissue. Recovery of corals is usually thought to depend on sexual reproduction and the settlement and growth of new corals arriving from other reefs. This study demonstrates that for fast-growing coral species asexual reproduction is a vital component of reef resilience' says Dr Sophie Dove, also from CoECRS and The University of Queensland.

'Coral reefs globally are increasingly being damaged by mass bleaching and climate change, and their capacity to recovery from that damage is critical to their future,' explains Prof. Ove Hoegh-Guldberg of CoECRS and The University of Queensland. 'Our study suggests that managing local stresses that affect reefs such as overfishing and declining water quality can have a big influence on the trajectory of reefs under rapid global change.'

'Clearly, we need to urgently deal with the problem of rising carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, but managing reefs to reduce the impact of local factors can buy important time while we do this,' he says.

Understanding the different mechanisms of resilience is critical for reef management under climate change. 'Diversity in processes may well be critical to the overall resilience and persistence of coral reef ecosystems globally,' Dr Laurence McCook, from the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, says.

The research was partially funded by a Pew Fellowship in Marine Conservation awarded to Dr McCook, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority as well as the ARC Centre of Excellence program.

'This combination of circumstances provided a lucky escape for the coral reefs in Keppel Islands, but is also a clear warning for the Great Barrier Reef. As climate change and other human impacts intensify, we need to do everything we possibly can to protect the resilience of coral reefs,' he adds.

Algal Overgrowth -  ARC Centre of?nid=56275 Excellence Coral Reef Studies ©   Click Here to view large photo



Barren Reef January 2008 -  ARC Centre of?nid=56275 Excellence Coral Reef Studies ©

The research was published this week in the paper Doom and boom on a resilient reef: Climate change, algal overgrowth and coral recovery, in the journal PLoS ONE, by Guillermo Diaz-Pulido, Laurence J. McCook, Sophie Dove, Ray Berkelmans, George Roff, David I. Kline, Scarla Weeks, Richard D. Evans, David H. Williamson and Ove Hoegh-Guldberg.

http://www.coralcoe.org.au




by ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies

  

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

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=56275

3:09 AM Tue 28 Apr 2009 GMT






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

Click for further information on
Environment and the ocean

Related News Stories:

27 Nov 2013  World Oceans Day appeals for funds
16 Nov 2013  Gigantic iceberg sails north from the Antarctic
09 Nov 2013  Sailing and swimming with manatees - Oceans Watch Essay
01 Nov 2013  OceansWatch: cruising sailors give something back in the South Pacific
23 Oct 2013  'The Ocean is Broken' - without fish, there can be no birds
13 Oct 2013  PlanetSolar reaches Paris after successful ocean study
02 Oct 2013  Monaco Yacht Show goes Green
07 Sep 2013  Great Pacific Garbage Patch - the real story
03 Sep 2013  World's largest solar yacht drops anchor after marine science quest
25 Aug 2013  Boat owners: cover vessels to deter seagulls
MORE STORIES ...

News - USA and the World





























































America's Cup: Challenger calls Competitor Meeting ahead of deadline *Feature by Richard Gladwell Sail-World.com/nz,






U.S. Women’s Match Racing Championship - Top teams to battle
Audi-Tron Sailing Series - Melges 20 fleet ready for action
Volvo Cork Week - Front runners emerge on day 3
Nacra 17 Europeans - Big winds halt racing in La Grande Motte
49er and 49erFX Europeans - Tough end to qualifying phase + Video
New Classification Code for consultation released by the IPC
Clipper Round The World Yacht Race fleet heads for London
Volvo Ocean Race - Abu Dhabi and Team Alvimedi head for England
Rio 2016 in the sights of ISAF Youth Worlds 420 sailors
Exciting new International Audi Melges 20 Ranking System now in play
FISU World University Match Racing Championships - GBR women win gold
2014 Seiko 49er and 49erFX European Championship - Day 2
Volvo Ocean Race teams Abu Dhabi and Alvimedica leave Newport, RI
Half Ton Classics Cup - Champagne conditions on Day 2 + Video
ABYC Fourth of July Regatta - Snipes join the action
Volvo Cork Week - Three bullets for ballistic catapult
Nacra 17 Europeans - Besson and Riou lead the overall standings
Formula 16 World Championship - Aussies claim title in Newport
Vestas Sailrocket 3 - The journey beckons
Clipper Round the World - London to provide emotional heroes welcome
ISAF Youth Worlds - Italians to lead RS:X fleet in Tavira   
Vestas Sailrocket 3 - Over the Horizon   
Foiling Week - Italian Moth Championship - Final results   
NYYC Race Week - Yachting history on display   
Rescued sailors reach shore after dramatic ocean rescue   
Half Ton Classics Cup: Swuzzlebubble out front on Day 1 + Video   
New York Yacht Club Race Week - Yachting history on display   
Volvo Cork Week - Thrilling conditions welcome international fleet   
Nacra 17 Europeans: Success for Italy's Bissaro and Sicouri   
America's Cup: 2017 venue short-list reduced to two Cities   
Formula Windsurfing Youth and Master Worlds overall   
49er and 49erFX Europeans: Pitfalls aplenty on day 1 + Video   
ISAF Youth Worlds - Laser Radial sailors look to join list of legends   
Coville soon to chase solo circumnavigation record in giant trimaran   
Fierce competition at the Meanline Fins Slalom Challenge   
Volvo Ocean Race - Team Brunel opt for experienced winner   
Bakewell-White supermaxi designed to take Transpac's Barn Door Trophy *Feature   
Crew rescued by navy patrol from J/111 racer after Mayday in storm   
Team Alvimedica practice in Newport, RI - Photos   
18 foot skiff European Championship (Open Europeans) - Final results   


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 US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT