Acidic oceans endangering baby coralsApril 19th, 2012 - 3:25 pm ICT by IANS
Sydney, April 19 (IANS) Acidic oceans are dramatically altering the ability of baby corals to sense their surroundings, says a study.
A team from the School of Biological Sciences and Global Change Institute of The University of Queensland found that oceans’ acidic conditions are threatening baby corals’ ability to survive.
Christopher Doropoulos from Queensland, who led the study, said acidification caused the coral to settle in less suitable places, threatening their ability to survive, the journal Ecology Letters reported.
“Baby corals are initially found as swimming larvae before they choose their place to attach to the reef and settle for life, a critical step to their survival and the maintenance of coral reefs,” he said, according to a university statement.
“The coral larvae normally have this amazing ability to settle on one particular type of rock-like seaweed called Titanoderma. This stony seaweed is a safe haven for young corals, yet we found that, as levels of ocean acidification increased, the coral larvae avoided this seaweed and started to settle absolutely anywhere,” said Doropoulos.
Working at a remote island on the Great Barrier Reef, the team made the discovery of the disrupted ancient relationship between coral larvae and their favourite nursery habitat.
Doropolous said human development had increased the levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, causing the oceans to become more acidic.
“Ocean acidification also changed the types of seaweeds available to the corals and had a damaging effect on their preferred species of Titanoderma,” added Doropoulos.
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- Fish learn to cope with high CO2 in oceans - Jul 03, 2012
- Indo-Pacific corals more resilient than Caribbean twins - Jul 13, 2012
- CO2 threatens fish's very survival in oceans - Jan 16, 2012
- Coral reefs will survive ravages of warming: Scientists - Apr 17, 2012
- Fish lose ability to smell danger in acidic oceans - Jul 18, 2010
- Could corals survive more acidic oceans? - Apr 02, 2012
- High acidity levels in oceans harming marine life - Dec 05, 2010
- Baby corals use sound cues to reach home - May 15, 2010
- Global warming could lead small fish to engage in 'risky' behaviour - Jul 07, 2010
- Chemicals from seaweeds damage coral on contact - May 11, 2010
- Sea cucumbers could protect endangered corals - Feb 01, 2012
- Just 10 yrs left to save Oz's Great Barrier Reef: Expert - Apr 10, 2011
Tags: acidic conditions, ancient relationship, biological sciences, carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, coral reefs, critical step, ecology letters, global change institute, great barrier reef, journal ecology, larvae, nursery habitat, ocean acidification, oceans, preferred species, safe haven, seaweed, suitable places, surroundings, university of queensland