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"News & Views" article on coral-reef degradation published in Nature

USGS Research Marine Biologist Ilsa B. Kuffner describes the significance of new work on the loss of reef-building capacity in the world's coral reefs for the journal Nature.

Relict Holocene coral-reef framework in the Dry Tortugas National Park
Relict Holocene coral-reef framework in the Florida Keys. Like many reefs in the western Atlantic, reefs here were just a few coral species: primary Acropora palmata and Orbicella spp. Recent disturbances have led to declines in the populations of those corals and relative increases in the abundance of more weedy taxa. The photograph was collected during fieldwork under permit DRTO-2018-SCI-0005 from the National Park Service.

In a "News & Views" article entitled "Sea-level rise could overwhelm coral reefs," she summarizes the work of Perry et al. (2018). published in the same Nature issue, and explains the implications of the group's findings for the management and conservation of the world's coral reef ecosystems. Kuffner describes how Perry et al.'s assessment of the capacity of coral reefs to grow fast enough to keep up with projected rises in sea level finds that most reefs will fall behind if nothing is done to restore them.

 

Read what else is new at the St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center.

 

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