Articles on Corals

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Everyone wants good news about coral, but we shouldn’t misinterpret the latest findings. Phil Camill

Research good news for coralline algae, but not necessarily for reefs

As Doha disappoints on delivering any real progress on reducing global CO2 emissions, new research demonstrates that a key component of coral reef structures may be more resilient in the face of increasing…
A high level of coral cover doesn’t always mean a high level of species diversity; and diversity is important. Maria Beger

A lot of coral doesn’t always mean high biodiversity

The health and productivity of coral reefs is rapidly declining. Hard corals are the principal builders of coral reef ecosystems; however they are struggling to survive due to pollution, catchment clearing…
The Great Barrier Reef may be huge and long-lived, but without intervention it’s in serious trouble. Landfeldt/Flickr

The decay of the Great Barrier Reef calls for a reckoning

There is a myth about Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, that goes like this: because it is so big, biodiverse, so well-managed and generally bloody awesome, the GBR is immune to climate change and other…
We thought we’d set a safe limit on climate change - 450ppm CO2 - but it may be too high for most of the world’s reefs. Paul Toogood

Climate change guardrail too hot for coral reefs?

One of the ambitions of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is galvanising the international community to avoid dangerous interference with Earth’s climate. To do this, it…
Little penguins are among a number of species that are threatened by climate change. AAP/Rick Stevens

Ocean winners and losers revealed in Marine Report Card

Fish are on the move in Australia’s waters. In southern Australia, scientists, commercial and recreational fishers, divers and beach-goers are reporting the presence of new species. The movement of species…
Coral species Acropora monticulosa is becoming more abundant at the Solitary Islands in northern NSW.

On the move: corals migrate south into NSW’s warming waters

The east coast of Australia is a global hotspot for the effects of climate change, especially in the marine realm, where average water temperatures have increased by almost half a degree over the last…
There will be “winners and losers in the oceans” as its chemistry changes. AAP

Some corals could survive a more acidic ocean

Internal “pumps” found in some corals may help them to endure gradual ocean acidification, giving rise to hope that coral…

Previewing the effects of ocean acidification

Submarine springs along the coast of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula are giving scientists a preview of how coral reefs will react…
The Coral Sea could soon become the world’s largest marine park. babasteve

Does the Coral Sea marine park proposal provide enough protection?

The release of the Coral Sea Commonwealth marine reserve proposal is a milestone achievement in marine protection. The area proposed to be covered is larger than that of many small European nations. In…

Corals sense warming waters and initiate self-suicide

Australian scientists have shed new light on the mechanisms of coral bleaching. The phenomenon that affects coral reefs around…
Coral bleaching is a serious issue, but we’re learning how reefs can best recover. AFP/Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority

Back from the bleach – how isolation helps coral reefs recover

Coral reefs around the world are under pressure from multiple threats. A burgeoning gas industry – such as that near Gladstone – is one of the newest of these. Pollution, sedimentation, declining water…
Protecting coral reefs means thinking about people, not just marine species. Fran Tapia

Poverty, not population, is ruining coral reef ecosystems

Overfishing is a serious problem on many of the world’s coral reefs – a problem that is generally attributed to too many people. But our research has found that economic development, rather than population…

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