Coral research reveals different story on growth

Traditional methods of determining past ocean temperatures through coral studies have had to be rethought.

Research conducted on two neighbouring corals near Madagascar has shown that biological growth effects can distort the temperature and climate information that corals store in their cores. The study period took in a 43-year period and looked at the strontium-to-calcium ratios in the two corals, which suggested that the difference in these ratios was actually accounted for by individual growth rather than surrounding sea temperature.

The study suggests that in future, past ocean temperatures should be defined by the study of multiple corals to establish individual differences.

Read more at University of Western Australia