Category Archives: Conservation

Latest Posts

Coral Growth Plummets on GBR

A recent study has documented a historical decline in coral growth on the Great Barrier Reef of Australia. A team led by Carnegie’s Ken Caldeira compared measurements of the rate of calcification on a segment of the GBR called Bird Island between 1975 and 1979 to those made at a neighboring Island in 2008 and 2009. The team found that the rates of calcification were 40 percent lower during the 2008-2009 period than in the 1975-1979 period. 140917121225 large 300x199 Coral Growth Plummets on GBR“Coral reefs are getting hammered,” said Caldeira. “Ocean acidification, global warming, coastal pollution, and overfishing are all damaging coral reefs. Coral reefs have been around for millions of years, but are likely to become a thing of the past unless we start running our economy as if the sea and sky matters to us very soon.” Read more here.… More:

Posted in Conservation, Corals, Science, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Specialist Species Targeted for Their Importance

Professor David Bellwood from the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies (Coral CoE) in Australia has published an international study aimed at protecting the most important species within a reef ecosystem. “What we often assume is that if we lose one species on a reef, there are many others that can step in and take over their job,” explains Professor Bellwood. However, he and his colleagues believe a different theory that involves stressing the importance of “specialist” species that play very important and specific roles in maintaining the equilibrium of a reef. 140915153832 large Specialist Species Targeted for Their Importance“It’s not about numbers of species,” adds Professor David Mouillot from the University of Montpellier who led the team. “Biodiversity is important and desirable in an ecosystem, but it is not necessarily the key to being safe and secure.” Using a parrotfish for analogy Professor Bellwood adds: “The parrotfish is a particularly valuable species. To protect ecosystems, we need to ensure that specific jobs are maintained, and that means we must protect the fish that do them.” Read more here!  … More:

Posted in Conservation, Corals, Fish, Invertebrates, Science, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Warming Waters Could Increase Dispersal of Invasive Species

Researchers from NOAA and the University of North Carolina-Wilmington have found that the increasing temperatures of our ocean waters may increase the range and dispersal of invasive species like the Lion Fish. “The results [of their study] will allow us to better understand how the fish communities might shift under different climate change scenarios and provide the type of environmental data to inform future decisions relating to the management and siting of protected areas,” says Paula Whitfield, a research ecologist at NOAA. Researchers used surface and sub-surface temperature readings while observing 40 different species of fish. They found the range of fish is directly correlated to the shifts in temperature shown throughout the differing zones. diver fish smaller 225x300 Warming Waters Could Increase Dispersal of Invasive Species“Globally, fish communities are becoming more tropical as a result of warming temperatures,  as fish move to follow their optimal temperature range.,” said Whitfield. “Along the North Carolina coast, warming water temperatures may allow the expansion of tropical fish species, such as lionfish, into areas that were previously uninhabitable due to cold winter temperatures. The temperature thresholds collected in this study will allow us to detect and to estimate fish community changes related to water temperature.” Read more here!More:

Posted in Conservation, Fish, Science, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Ways to revert threatened status for staghorns and elkhorns drafted

Staghorn coral by Adona9 300x208 Ways to revert threatened status for staghorns and elkhorns drafted

(Staghorn Coral Photo: Adona9)

 Bad news: According to the Endangered Species Act (2006), elkhorn and staghorn corals are listed as threatened. BUT: A new draft recovery plan released by NOAA Fisheries at the beginning of the month identifies criteria that would allow the coral species to be removed from the ESA endangered and threatened species list.  (It’s so nice when someone finds a way to “reverse” damage that humans have done). Elkhorn and staghorn corals have declined by up to 97% since the 1970’s with the main causes of decline being disease, temperature-induced bleaching and storms.  This new plan lists ways to reduce threats (global threats related to climate change and local threats to the species such as habitat loss and pollution) and steps to enhance the population by putting nursery-grown corals back on the reef, as well as addressing research and monitoring. Good news!! For more information see: http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/… More:
Posted in Conservation, Corals, Science | Leave a comment

This Glittery Goniopora is the Best Looking Yet

7131Pieces of the Ocean Goniopora This Glittery Goniopora is the Best Looking Yet
The LPS scene was dominated by green goniopora for decades. They were just so commonplace that everyone had them, or at least tried them out in their reef with mixed results. Then, along came the bright red ones and everyone was like, “ooohhh, ahhhh”. These red gonis have since dominated, as they sported vibrant reddish pink colors and occasionally a blue disc atop their tentacles. While both of those morphs are fine and all, but there’s a new color morph on the block that is set to put all others to shame. It’s a sparkling, glittery red goni, and it is amazing.This stunning piece features reddish, almost copper colored tentacles that are infused with glitter and punctuated with those hypnotic yellow eyes. MORE: This Glittery Goniopora is the Best Looking YetMore:

Posted in Conservation, DIY, Equipment, Events, Fish, Industry, MACNA, Photography, Science, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Neptune Systems WAV Offers “Extreme” Flow and Controllability

3be0Neptune Systems WAV Neptune Systems WAV Offers “Extreme” Flow and ControllabilityNeptune Systems has been feverishly adding new accessories to their Apex controller over the last couple of years, and they’ve finally debuted their very own water pump. Called the WAV, this new system offers extreme water flow and it comes with a mountain of features and interesting selling points that could give some of the long established pumps a good run for their money. The pump is smaller than numerous other powerheads on the market, yet it cranks out over 3200 gallons per hour, all of which is under full Apex control. But we will hit more on that below. Like most pumps, the WAV attaches the wall of the aquarium via strong magnets, though these are are capable of handling tanks with glass or acrylic up to 3/4″ thick. The magnet mount also allows the WAV to vertically pivot +/- 20 degrees and rotate a full 360, letting the flow hit specific areas within the tank.In terms of controlability, the pump is built and designed to be used seamlessly with the Apex controller, and Neptune Systems even gave the WAV its own module, called the 1LINK. There are numerous flow settings through the controller, and the flow rates can be monitored through the Apex Fusion dashboard just like you would water temperature or pH. All in all, there are 8 pre-built flow programs (Constant, Mavericks, Lagoon, Pulse, Huntington, Rincon, Trestles, and Doheny), and users can program the pump to operate under any one of these modes at any time of the day. In addition to controlling the pumps, users will also be able to monitor each and every one that is plugged into the system. MORE: Neptune Systems WAV Offers “Extreme” Flow and ControllabilityMore:

Posted in Conservation, Corals, DIY, Equipment, Events, Fish, Industry, MACNA, Photography, Science, Tanks, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Our Hobby is Under Attack

pijac1 1 Our Hobby is Under AttackWe’re currently facing legislation that could put an end to our hobby as we know it. And no, I’m not sensationalizing the situation. Please don’t make the mistake of thinking you and your home aquarium(s) wouldn’t be affected, because they absolutely could. We first heard about the potential issues at MACNA 2013, and this past MACNA further solidified the urgency of action to protect our hobby. The current issues date back to a 2009 petition by the Center for Biological Diversity (CBD) to move 83 reef-building coral species under the protection of the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Just last month, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) listed 20 of those species (5 Caribbean, 15 Indo-Pacific) as threatened. This happened after scientific information submitted by the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council (PIJAC)—they’re on our side—proved that many of the 83 species did not warrant protection under the ESA. According to PIJAC, the NMFS will likely apply ESA’s “take” prohibitions to the newly listed coral species sooner rather than later. More: Our Hobby is Under AttackMore:

Posted in Conservation, Corals, Fish, Industry, MACNA, Opinion, Science | Leave a comment

Super Rare Ballina Angelfish Shows Up Near Lord Howe Island Video

 For some reason, we’ve been sitting on this story for a couple of weeks and just never got around to actually publishing it. We will let MACNA take the blame for that. Regardless, here is an interesting find out of the waters of Southeast Australia. The crew at Pro Dive were spending a little time getting to know the inhabitants of Lord Howe Island when one of the rarest angelfish in the world just so happened to cross their path. The Ballina Angelfish (Chaetodontoplus ballinae), referred to as “one of those unicorns of the sea”, can be seen casually strolling about in its somewhat abnormally shallow habitat nibbling on stuff as it nervously keeps a safe distance from the diver in pursuit.These fish are incredibly rare. The first described specimen was hauled up in 1959, after which only a handful (or less) have even been seen. The species normally inhabits deepwater reef habitats in excess of 100 meters below the surface, but apparently at Balls Pyramid (just south of Lord Howe Island) they have been spotted in shallower waters.Due to its natural rarity and that its already limited range occurs within marine sanctuaries, the fish is non-existent in the aquarium trade and will continue to be for probably as long as we’re around. Still, it is a beautiful fish that is worthy of its moment in the limelight, and we’d love to see more dive footage of it. Or, we could take Pro Dive up on their offer (in the video clip) to come and dive Balls Pyramid to see them in person. MORE: Super Rare Ballina Angelfish Shows Up Near Lord Howe Island VideoMore:

Posted in Conservation, DIY, Equipment, Events, Fish, Industry, MACNA, Photography, Science, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Reefs.com is the world's leading destination for sustainable coral reef farming and the aquarium hobby. We offer a free open forum and reef related news and data to better educate aquarists and further our goals of sustainable reef management.