Coral Reef Research Paper

Coral Reef Research Paper-74
There are three types of reefs: fringing reefs, extending outward directly from the shore; barrier reefs, occurring further offshore with a channel between the reef and the shoreline; and atolls, essentially horseshoe-shaped coral islands enclosing a lagoon.

There are three types of reefs: fringing reefs, extending outward directly from the shore; barrier reefs, occurring further offshore with a channel between the reef and the shoreline; and atolls, essentially horseshoe-shaped coral islands enclosing a lagoon.These large structures are not simply communities of minute polyps. Plants growing on coral surfaces feed herbivorous fish.

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All reef-building coral species enjoy a symbiotic relationship with species of algae called zooxanthellae.

Residing within the coral polyps’ tissues, these photosynthetic one-celled plants are the ultimate source of the energy for the polyp to produce and exude calcium carbonate.

Hughes has spent the past three decades tracking changes on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.

It was in 1998 that the reef faced its first “mass bleaching event”.

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Coral is the common collective name for a large class of marine invertebrate polyps with six or eight tentacles.

The polyps secrete calcium carbonate which forms an exoskeleton into which the polyp withdraws for protection from predators.

While a very few such animals are solitary, the great majority are “colonial” in that they form colonies in which their individual skeleton structures are joined together in a common mass.

While algae can be reabsorbed when the water temperature drops once more, corals will die if this separation is too long.

Coral bleaching is of great global concern, as around one in six people globally rely on coral reefs for food, shelter and livelihoods.

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