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Latest Reef Stories

375bde48ee94c2f206eff447ea2227a1
2010-09-01 09:35:00

A team of researchers from Australian and New Zealand have discovered an ancient, massive coral reef in the Pacific Ocean, making it the southernmost reef discovered to date. The ancient reef, which is an estimated 9,000 years old and well over 20-times larger than any existing modern reef, was discovered near Lord Howe Island in the Tasman Sea, some 370-plus miles east of the Australian mainland, according to an August 31 press release published online at ScienceDaily.com. The team of...

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2010-08-26 09:40:00

Xestospongia muta, better known as the giant barrel sponge, is now the most dominant life form in the coral reefs of the Caribbean and the Florida Keys, according researchers from the University of North Carolina (UNC) Wilmington. Working at the Aquarius Reef Base near Key Largo, Florida from August 17 through August 26, UNC Wilmington professor of biology and marine biology Dr. Joseph Pawlik and professor of biology and marine biology Dr. Christopher Finelli have been studying the Caribbean...

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2010-08-24 12:40:00

Chemists discover how oysters bond together to form massive reef complexes Oyster reefs are on the decline, with over-harvesting and pollution reducing some stocks as much as 98 percent over the last two centuries. With a growing awareness of oysters' critical roles filtering water, preventing erosion, guarding coasts from storm damage, and providing habitat for other organisms, researchers have been investigating how oyster reefs form in order to better understand the organisms and offer...

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2010-08-24 10:55:39

Tiny corals face shocking losses when first they settle on reefs, making the full complexity and wonder of the mature coral reef all the more remarkable. Research by Australian and French scientists has thrown new light on coral's dangerous infancy and childhood, in the quest to better understand how coral reefs can re-establish, at a time when they face multiplying threats worldwide. A team from the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies (CoECRS) at James Cook University and CRIOBE,...

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2010-08-23 12:15:00

Next month, scientists plan to monitor corals in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands for signs of bleaching. The reefs become stressed and expel the algae that live inside them when temperatures are warmer than usual.  This causes the corals to lose their color. Corals may die if this continues for extended periods, which could deprive fish of vital food and habitat. Monument deputy superintendent Randall Kosaki said Friday that researchers will study coral in the Papahanaumokuakea...

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2010-08-19 08:34:01

Rising ocean temperatures in waters off the northwestern coast of Indonesia are killing off coral at one of the fastest rates ever recorded, conservationists warned Wednesday, adding that the threat extends to other Asian reefs as well.The Wildlife Conservation Society sent biologists to Aceh province, on the tip of Sumatra Island, in May when waters in the Andaman Sea peaked at 93 degrees Fahrenheit -- a 7 degree rise over long-term averages.The biologists found that the coral was suffering...

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2010-08-18 09:45:09

Australian researchers are a step closer to understanding the rapid decline of our coral reefs, thanks to a breakthrough study linking coral immunity with its susceptibility to bleaching and disease. The discovery was made by Caroline Palmer, Bette Willis and John Bythell, scientists from the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, James Cook University (Queensland) and Newcastle University (UK). "Understanding the immune system of reef-building corals will...

2010-08-18 02:31:18

Wildlife Conservation Society and partners document large-scale coral bleaching and death in wake of sea surface temperature rise The Wildlife Conservation Society today released initial field observations that indicate that a dramatic rise in the surface temperature in Indonesian waters has resulted in a large-scale bleaching event that has devastated coral populations. WCS's Indonesia Program "Rapid Response Unit" of marine biologists was dispatched to investigate coral bleaching reported...

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2010-08-15 06:10:00

Scientists in Australia have found a cluster of dazzling shallow-water corals that could help with the production of possible cancer-fighting drugs and may help to understand global warming, a researcher frmo the University of Western Sydney said Saturday. The fluorescent cluster of corals was found off Lord Howe Island, 400 miles east of the Australia. Some displayed rich reds that proved hard to find and are in high demand for cancer cell studies, said researcher Anya Salih. The...

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2010-08-04 14:02:31

The growing amount of human noise pollution in the ocean could lead fish away from good habitat and off to their death, according to new research from a UK-led team working on the Great Barrier Reef. After developing for weeks at sea, baby tropical fish rely on natural noises to find the coral reefs where they can survive and thrive. However, the researchers found that short exposure to artificial noise makes fish become attracted to inappropriate sounds. In earlier research, Dr Steve...


Latest Reef Reference Libraries

Coral Reef
2013-04-20 15:49:21

Coral reefs are submerged structures consisting of calcium carbonate secreted by corals. Coral reefs are colonies of small animals found in marine waters that enclose few nutrients. The majority of coral reefs are constructed from stony corals, which then consist of polyps that come together in groups. The polyps are like small sea anemones, to which they are very closely related. Unlike the sea anemones, coral polyps secrete hard carbonate exoskeletons which provide support and protections...

601px-Echinophilia
2012-04-03 19:33:28

Chalice Corals, are a family of stony corals in the Pectiniidae family. Members of this family are mostly colonial but at least one species, Echinomorpha nishihirai, is solitary. These corals are endemic to the Indian and Pacific oceans. Pectiniids have a number of different forms but are basically streamlined and smooth. Polyps are large and brightly colored and resemble those of members of the Mussidae family of corals. The polyps are only extended at night. Tentacles are translucent,...

800px-Massive_Starlet_Coral_(Siderastrea_siderea)
2012-04-03 19:03:15

Siderastreidae is a family of colonial, reef building stony corals. Members of this family include symbiotic algae in their tissues which help provide their energy requirements. The World Register of Marine Species lists 7 genera within this family: Anomastraea, Coscinaraea, Craterastrea, Horastrea, Psammocora, Pseudosiderastrea, and Siderastrea. Corals in this family vary in form and include massive, thickly encrusting, columnar, and irregular forms. Corallites are linked by flowing...

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2012-04-03 18:06:52

Horn corals, known as Rugosa or Tetracoralla, are an extinct order of coral that were abundant during the Middle Ordovician to Late Permian stages. They were known as horn corals because of a unique horn-shaped chamber with a wrinkled (rugose) wall. These mostly solitary corals often reached lengths of nearly 40 inches. However, some species could form large colonies. Rugose corals have a skeleton made up of calcite that is often fossilized. Like modern corals, rugose corals were...

800px-Syringoporid
2012-04-03 17:00:56

Tabulata is a family of extinct tabulate corals. These corals lived entirely during the Paleozoic era, being found from the Ordovician to the Permian stages. There are about 300 known genera of tabulate corals, of which Aulopora, Favosites, Halysites, Heliolites, Pleurodictyum, Sarcinula and Syringopora are the most common in the fossil record. These corals were mostly found in the shallow waters of the Silurian and Devonian, after which, they became much less common. They became extinct...

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Word of the Day
cacodemon
  • An evil spirit; a devil.
  • A nightmare.
  • In astrology, the twelfth house of a scheme or figure of the heavens: so called from its signifying dreadful things, such as secret enemies, great losses, imprisonment, etc.
'Cacodemon' comes from a Greek term meaning 'evil genius.'
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