Displaying items by tag: Coral Reefs
A new paper says that both shallow and deep-water coral reefs, even in remote areas, are impacted by plastic. Most of the larger items are from fishing “ghost gear” such as nets. Food wrappers and plastic bottles were also common.
Plastic is an “emerging threat” to reefs which have already been stressed by the impacts of climate change, pollution, and overfishing.
The study examined 84 reefs at more than 25 locations including uninhabited atolls and reefs at depths of 150 metres across the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans.
Anthropogenic debris was found in 77 out of the 84 reefs surveyed, including in some of Earth’s most remote and near-pristine reefs, such as in uninhabited central Pacific atolls.
The Comores, which together with Mauritius, Seychelles, and Madagascar form part of the group of island states in the Western Indian Ocean, is the worst-affected location with nearly 84,500 items of plastic in each square kilometre.
Pinheiro, H.T., MacDonald, C., Santos, R.G. et al. Plastic pollution on the world’s coral reefs. Nature 619, 311–316 (2023). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41586-023-06113-5
While we've known for a while that oxybenzone, an ingredient in sunscreen, can damage and kill coral reefs, the exact mechanism was unknown. A study in Science has now found that oxybenzone only kills sea anemones and mushroom corals when they’re exposed to sunlight. When the corals are exposed to both oxybenzone and UV light, they metabolize the chemical in a way that turns it into a "potent photosensitizer." This causes damaging radicals to form, which are toxic to the animals. It was also found that the coral’s symbiotic algae absorb the toxins produced by the metabolized oxybenzone and protects the coral. This means that corals that are already bleached and therefore lack the algae, may be even more vulnerable to sunscreen damage. Read more: https://www.science.org/doi/10.1126/science.abn2600
It's been 10 years since Nature Seychelles made a splash in the local waters with the launch of its ground-breaking and game-changing Reef Rescuers project. Based on Praslin Island and working in the Cousin Island Special Reserve, the project sought to restore coral reefs damaged by climate change-induced coral bleaching. The herculean task was met with some scepticism and naysaying in some quarters. But a decade down the line, we have proved that, yes, we can restore corals. And we can do so at a large scale.
Watch BBC News coverage of our Reef Rescuers project. Started nearly 10 years ago, the coral reef restoration project, Nature Seychelles' Reef Rescuers project uses the coral gardening method for coral reef restoration. First, corals are grown in underwater nurseries until they reach a size that is suitable for transplantation. Then, the nursery-grown corals are transplanted onto degraded reefs and long-term monitoring of transplantation success is carried out. You can learn more about the Reef Rescuers project on our website: http://natureseychelles.org/what-we-do/coral-reef-restoration
Coral reef managers are increasingly turning to restoration as a strategy to combat reef degradation and promote reef recovery. As a result, different techniques are being used across the globe, making it difficult to choose the right approach for your location’s specific needs and capabilities.
There is an urgent need to act on the warnings of a widespread decline in the productivity of coral reef fisheries, and broaden the focus of tropical marine conservation, say a group of experienced marine scientists. "Burying our heads in the sand as fisheries move and their negative impact is concentrated elsewhere can no longer be an option for marine conservation.
(Seychelles News Agency) - Seychelles has become a leader in the worldwide effort to restore corals grown in underwater nurseries that could help the fragile species adapt to rising water temperatures and climate change. The pioneer in this regard has been Nature Seychelles with their Reef Rescuers project that started eight years ago.
The only way to show that you care a great deal about someting is through action. We take the extreme pollution of our oceans seriously. What better way to demonstrate this but through simple Do-It-Yourself projects that upcycle items.
Spreading from the western Pacific, the lethal heat wave associated to the 2015/17 El Niño hit the western Indian Ocean around February 2016. Here in the Seychelles, the water temperature averaged 30°C for four consecutive months, peaking over 31°C on some days!
A proposal to undertake a large-scale coral reef restoration project in the Colombian Caribbean has been shortlisted for support by the European Outdoor Conservation Association (EOCA). Now, outdoor enthusiasts and project supporters will vote to decide if the project gets to receive funding for long-term sustainability.