TAG: Coral

Stress Tests for Coral Reefs

Coral stresses

Often called “the rainforests of the ocean”, coral reefs enrich our planet with aquatic life. The coral itself is an animal that hosts a large variety of organisms. They serve as a source of food and shelter to sponges, jellyfish, sea anemones, sea turtles, clams, crabs, shrimp, starfish, oysters and sea urchins – to name a few. Coral reefs are important for a variety of reasons. In addition to providing refuge to marine life, coral reefs protect coastlines against erosion. They also act as sensitive indicators of water quality. This informs us of the overall quality of the eco system…. read more

A Swarm of Robots Could Repair Coral Reefs

coralbot

A swarm of autonomous intelligent robots, or coralbots, could be put to work repairing and restoring coral reefs in areas that have been damaged by weather, human negligence, or destructive fishing practices. Coral reefs are an incredibly important part of the ocean ecosystem, providing food and shelter for many organisms under the sea, as well as providing a living for hundreds of millions of people around the world. When coral reefs are damaged, they can be given a headstart in restoration by the transplantation of healthy pieces of coral, but because human divers are limited in terms of the depth… read more

Saving the Reef

The Great Barrier Reef

The world’s largest coral reef with an eco-system is the Great Barrier Reef located off the coast of Queensland, Australia. The eco-system is composed of over 2,900 individual reefs, 900 islands stretching for over 1,600 miles over an area of approximately 133,000 sq. mi. More than nearly half the reef has vanished in the last 27 years. A coral reef ecologist, Katharina Fabricius, from the Australian Institute of Marine Science told LiveScience that she has been diving to the reef since 1988 and has studied the decline. To gather their data, Fabricius and her colleagues surveyed 214 different reefs near the Great Barrier… read more