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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.

Creature of the Month: Yellow Saddle Goatfish Work Together

Yellow saddle goatfish are a common site on the reefs of the Red Sea. A team of scientists from Switzerland though have discovered that...

Live fast and die young: same-sex sexual behaviour in a deep-sea squid

In a study published today in Biology Letters, male squid were found to routinely and indiscriminately mate with both males and females.
soft coral

Soft Coral is Reef Building

Scientists have long believed soft corals, one of the many endangered elements of marine life, are only minor contributors to the structure of coral...

Mapping Coral Disease Clusters in the Caribbean

In the last 30 years, more than 90 percent of the reef-building coral in the Caribbean has disappeared because of a disease of unknown...

Scientists Warn of Unprecidented Marine Exctinctions

We knew it was bad, but it is even worse than we thought. World rushing heedlessly towards global marine extinctions.
Mauve Stinger Jellyfish, Pelagia noctiluca, by Andrew Reay-Robinson

Jellyfish blooms move food energy from fish to bacteria

Over the last few years reports of jellyfish blooms around the world have been increasing. This is bad news for the marine food web, as the jellyfish are voracious predators of plankton, but are not readily consumed by other predators. New study shows that jellyfish shunt food energy from fish toward bacteria.