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A Million Species in the Oceans?

The oceans may be home to nearly a million marine species but two thirds of them remain undescribed.

Corals call for fish aid when attacked by Seaweed

Corals in the genus Acropora generate much of the structural complexity upon which coral reefs depend, but they are susceptible to damage from toxic seaweeds. Acropora nasuta minimises this damage by chemically calling goby fishes who within minutes start chomping on the seaweed.
Frog Fish, Great Barrier Reef

Indonesia Coral Reefs Thrive under Centuries Old System

Indonesian coral reefs are thriving under a management system designed in the 17th Century.

Canada Invests $32 Million in Ocean Science

Canada has the longest coastline in the world. The Government of Canada is to provide $32.8 million in support of Ocean Networks Canada (ONC),...
Rich cold-water coral reef in the Whittard Canyon area by the Isis ROV

Scientists unveil first maps of deep sea corals

Proposed marine protected areas will cover just 30% of the UK’s deep sea coral reefs and 3% of the sponge fields, according to the first-ever set of maps detailing where vulnerable deep-sea habitats are likely to be found in the North East Atlantic.
Leatherback Turtle

Changing Weather Threatens Survival of Baby Leatherback Turtles

Critically endangered leatherback turtles face serious threat from climate change in addition to existing egg poaching and fishing dangers. Scientists have discovered a clear link between climate and survival of the leatherback. Warming climate is killing eggs and hatchlings. Action is needed, both to mitigate this effect and, ultimately, to reverse it to avoid extinction. We need to change fishing practices that kill turtles at sea, intervene to cool the beach to save the developing eggs and find a way to stop global warming. Otherwise, the leatherback will be lost.
White tip reef shark

Will Marine Reserve Protect Coral Sea Sharks?

Shark fishing needs to be banned at Osprey and Shark Reef in the Coral Sea for a Marine Reserve to work, concludes a study published yesterday. It is estimated that each year, live-aboard dive boats are directly responsible for generating at least AU$16 M worth of income. Of all the Coral Sea reef systems, Osprey Reef has the highest visitation rate by tourism operators, primarily to conduct shark dives. So, the depletion of reef sharks at Osprey Reef would have serious financial ramifications for the area. To put this into perspective, in the Maldives, the removal of only 20 grey reef sharks, with a market value of only AU$1 000, caused an estimated loss of AU$500 000 annually in diving revenue.

How Healthy are Mediterranean Rocky Reefs?

Intense exploitation over millennia has depleted Mediterranean Sea species from the large to the small. What would a ‘healthy’ Mediterranean rocky bottom look like? There are no pristine sites (i.e. undisturbed by humans) left in the Mediterranean against which to compare the health of current ecosystems. SCUBA divers surveyed the rocky reefs throughout the Med, from Morocco to Turkey.
Bullethead Parrotfish, Chlorurus sordidus

Coral reef fish ‘help protect jobs’

Jobs, ecotourism and diving industries can benefit from having a diverse supply of weed-eating fish on the world’s coral reefs, scientists say. Despite their small size, relative to the sharks and whales that often get more attention, herbivorous fish play a vital role in maintaining the health of coral reefs, which support the livelihoods of 500 million people worldwide, according to a study published this month in the journal Ecology.

Corals in trouble by middle of this century

Nearly one-third of CO2 emissions due to human activities enters the world's oceans, making them less alkaline and affecting calcification of corals. By the middle of the century, corals at the Northern edges of the tropics will be in trouble with the Hawaiian island reefs will be among the first to feel the impact.