They're more used to taking visitors to the reefs, but COVID-19 gave tour operators time to help check the condition of the corals. What they found doesn't bode well.
Restoring the reef represents one of the most significant science and technology challenges in the history of nature conservation.
United States Department of Defense/Wikimedia
The findings will help determine the age of whale sharks, protecting the endangered animals into the future.
Corals at Scott Reef in 2012, and at the same site during the 2016 mass bleaching.
The Western Australian coral reefs may not be as well known as the Great Barrier Reef, but they're just as large and diverse. And they too have been devastated by cyclones and coral bleaching.
Many Caribbean reefs are now dominated by sponges.
Marine sponges are ancient organisms that have survived mass extinctions. Many are more tolerant of climate change and may dominate over corals in future reef systems.
During mass spawning events coral young rise from their parents to ocean surface.
Australian Institute of Marine Science
Every year buoyant bundles rise from a spawning coral, giving the impression of an upside-down snowstorm.
How the Great Barrier Reef can be helped to help repair the damaged reef.
Corals on the Great Barrier Reef that are tolerant to warmer waters can be used to help repair other parts of the reef damaged by recent coral bleaching events.
Mobile phones can be used as human tracking devices.
You can learn a lot about the movement of people and animals if you tap into the tracking data from many of today's mobile phones.
Scientists assess coral deaths in the worst-affected part of the Reef in November 2016.
Andreas Dietzel, ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies.
Two-thirds of the corals in the northern part of the Great Barrier Reef have died on in the reef's worst-ever bleaching event, according to the latest underwater surveys.
A researcher taking a photo-identification shot of a whale shark.
(C) Peter Verhoog, Dutch Shark Society
How you tell one whale shark from another? Spots and stripes.
Cartier Island marine reserve is part of a network that covers one-third of Australian waters.
Australian Institute of Marine Science
Marine parks need to cover large swathes of ocean, but they also need to cover the right areas if they are to deliver the best conservation. New research off Australia's northwest suggests how.
Professor Morgan Pratchett surveys bleached corals on Australia’s GBR.
Cassy Thompson, ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies
Bleaching has hit a huge swathe of the Great Barrier Reef, with many corals in the reef's remote northern reaches now expected to die as a result of warm waters linked to this summer's El Niño.
Pristine coral on the Great Barrier Reef.
Photo copyright Tom Bridge
Banning fishing helps fish, but it also helps reef recover from cyclones, disease, and coral bleaching.
Outbreaks of crown-of-thorns starfish, which eat coral, have been linked to poor water quality.
Starfish image from www.shutterstock.com
To fix pollution on the Great Barrier Reef, some farming practices will have to change.
A green turtle hatches in the lab.
Immersion in seawater kills sea turtle eggs, suggesting that sea turtles are increasingly at risk from rising seas, according to research published today in Royal Society Open Science.
Soil and water are crucial resources that need to be carefully studied and preserved.
There will be increasing demands placed on our soil and water in coming years, so we need greater research into how to preserve and maintain these precious resources.
A dredging ship in Queensland’s Gladstone Harbour.
AAP Image/Dave Hunt
A new report aims to establish exactly what we do and don't know about the effects of dredging on the Great Barrier Reef, and suggests that managing fine sediments will be one of the biggest challenges.
During an outbreak, crown-of-thorns starfish can number in the millions and decimate coral reefs.
Australian Institute of Marine Science/AAP
Crown-of-thorns starfish are one of the biggest threats to the Great Barrier Reef. Since 1985, the Great Barrier Reef has lost half its coral cover, with almost half of this coral loss due to the crown-of-thorns…
We need to play our cards right if Australia’s marine environments are to keep us afloat.
In many ways, Australia is defined by the oceans surrounding us. We have the world's third largest ocean territory, most of our trade travels by sea, and we have vast offshore resources.
An increase of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the ocean will not only have detrimental impacts on corals, but also the biodiversity…