Corals Over Climate Change

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by grotjansCHS
Last updated 5 years ago

Discipline:
Science
Subject:
Ecology

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Corals Over Climate Change

Corals Over Climate Change

The Great Barrier Reef is huge. So huge in fact, that it can be seen from outer space. But corals themselves are tiny. Corals, belonging to the class Anthozoa, live in huge colonies, making up the reefs we see today. Each individual colony is actually thousands of coral polyps grouped together into a functioning community.

This video helps put a clear picture to damage from the increasingly acidic waters.

The Great Barrier Reef, off the coast of Australia, is home to many fascinating creatures, including corals.

Coral polyps use calcium carbonate from the water they live in to build an exoskeleton, making up the 'reef'. Coral calcification is a very delicate process, and when the water's acidity rises, many of the polyps may die.

With global warming becoming a tangible issue, water temparature and acidity are going up. Global warming has two ways of damaging the corals. The water heats up, causing 'bleaching' to the corals when they can't absorb the algae they need. The other way global warming affects the corals is the aformentioned acid levels. But although this can spell doom for these creatures, things aren't as bad as they could be. Some types of corals are surprisingly resistant to the changes in the environment. While we still have a lot to do in the way of climate change and recovery of the oceans, for now the corals are hanging on.

Information for this Glog obtained from: Poltorak, Katya. “Corals Triumph in the Face of Climate Change—At Least for Now.” Today's Science. Infobase Learning, June 2012. Web. 30 Sept. 2014.


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