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Tag Archives: Coral

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Product Review: Bashsea I-Sea Coral viewer

  Bashsea I-Sea Coral viewer An aquarium’s glass panel provides a window into an underwater world. Whether the tank mimics a coral reef, a tropical river overgrown with aquatic plants, or a cichilid-filled African lake, these peeks into an otherwise inaccessible environment, is by far the most enjoyable perk of the hobby. That being said, we get so accustomed to seeing our aquatic setups from the front or side panels of the tank, that when an opportunity (such as a water change) arises to look in from above, it feels like seeing entirely different aquascape. This view is normally obscured by the constant water agitation, but now there are tools that allow for top-down observation of the fish tank environment. One such device comes from the well-respected American manufacturer Bashsea and will be the subject of today’s review. … More:

Reef Threads Podcast #258


Just some favia

It was a much longer break than we planned, but we’re back for more podcasting. This week it’s new tanks, growing sponge, coral harvesting for cosmetics, and cleaner-wrasse myths. Thanks for your patience and we hope you enjoy our first 2016 podcast. Download the podcast here, or subscribe to our podcasts at iTunes. Also, follow us on Twitter at reefthreads.—Gary and Christine

Sponsor: Rod’s Food
Rod’s Food website

Corals and cosmetics
Coral to be Harvested for Cosmetics, Jennifer Novoseletsky, Cosmetics and Toiletries

Wrasse myths
5 Cleaner Wrasse Myths, Saltwater Smarts via Reefs.com

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Reef Sediment Studied to Create Record of Diversity

rsmas-coral-340x680Researchers from the University of Miami’s Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science have analyzed sediment of deep water reefs ranging from 30-150 meters, in an effort to create a record of ancient biodiversity. Delving into the gunk lead researcher David Weinstein and his team analyzed the sediment of “mesophotic“ coral reef ecosystems, reefs that lack the high levels of light exposure that tropical reefs experience. “Understanding how these important marine ecosystems that we rely on for food and medicines evolved in the past gives us new insight into how to protect them in the future,” said UM Rosenstiel School alumnus and lead author of the study David Weinstein. “The results of this study provide the first analog to understanding how habitat biodiversity in these systems has evolved since the first reef-building ancient ancestors of modern corals.” The research team collected at four different sites including the St. Thomas, U.S.Virgin Islands, as well as two shallower water reef sites and their findings have suggested light tolerant corals and reefs evolved from much deeper, less exposed environments. “The mesophotic reefs of the Virgin Islands are especially vibrant and may contribute to the recovery of shallow reef systems after disturbance,” said Tyler Smith, coauthor of the study and associate research professor at the University of the Virgin Islands.… More:

Synthetic Coral Could Cleanse Oceans

coralPublished earlier this year in the Journal of Colloid a new study from researchers at Anhui Jianzhu University in China has explained how they have adapted coral like structures into nanotechnology that removes mercury from water. Using aluminum oxide Dr. Xianbiao Wang and his scientists have developed nanoplates capable of removing 2.5 times more mercury than traditional nanoparticles designed to achieve the same result. “Adsorption is an easy way to remove pollutants from water, so developing new products that can do this is a big challenge in environmental remediation,” said Dr. Xianbiao Wang, an author from Anhui Jianzhu University. “The chemical and physical structure of such products is very important, it is interesting to design and fabricate adsorbents with different structures to see how they behave. In particular, materials that mimic biological adsorbents like coral have potentially huge applications.”… More:

Adopt a Coral Genome for $25!


It’s the season for giving, and what better way to show you care about the health of our planet’s coral reef ecosystems than by directly helping to fund research aimed at bettering our understanding of these increasingly imperiled habitats. Dr. Mikhail Matz of the University of Texas – Austin is reaching out to coral enthusiasts everywhere to help expand his research into how Caribbean stony corals are able to adapt and survive through environmental changes. By parsing through the genetic code of these creatures, he hopes to better understand the speed with which corals are able to evolve to meet the challenges brought by climate change, and, ultimately, how we might best ensure their continued survival.… More:

Central Pacific Reefs Battered by El Nino

151201101504_1_900x600Researchers at the Georgia Tech’s School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences have painted a grim picture for the current status of Pacific ocean reefs. El Nino events are especially high this year and the waters surrounding many reefs are heating up quicker and more extensively than scientist had hoped.
“This El Niño event is driving one of the three largest global scale bleaching events on record,” said Kim Cobb, a professor in Georgia Tech’s School of Earth and Atmospheric Science. “Ocean temperatures exceeded the threshold for healthy corals back in the summer, and are continuing to warm. Bleaching occurs when temperatures exceed a threshold that is function of the amount of warming, as well as the length of time at that temperature.”… More:

The Candy Shop Presents a Rare Euphyllia

dscf0989-2 Over the years, one type of coral has become a staple in many aquaria, lending a flowing presence and a surprising array of color, but it is a rare occasion two species of the same genus combine to create a truly unique specimen. Hailing from Indonesian waters, and known affectionately in the hobby as a “Frammer,” the distinctive combination of both Euphyllia divisa and Euphyllia ancora offer owners both the nodular protrusions of a frogspawn and the beveled tentacles of a “hammer” (ancora) Euphyllia.… More:

Sunscreen and Its Effects Upon Coral Reefs

A team of international researchers including professor and diver John Fauth from the University of Southern Florida have battled the sun in a study where they measured the devestating effects of a compound found in commercial Sunscreen, upon coral reefs. “The use of oxybenzone-containing products  needs to be seriously deliberated in islands and areas where coral reef conservation is a critical issue,” Downs said. “We have lost at least 80 percent of the coral reefs in the Caribbean. Any small effort to reduce oxybenzone pollution could mean that a coral reef survives a long, hot summer, or that a degraded area recovers. Everyone wants to build coral nurseries for reef restoration, but this will achieve little if the factors that originally killed off the reef remain or intensify in the environment.”  john-fauth2-548x365Laboratory experiments that exposed coral larvae and cells to increased saturated levels of oxybenzone and conclude both genetic and physical damage was done to both. Larvae exposed to levels similar to those detected in samples collected around reefs were were trapped in their own skeletons, unable to disperse into the water column. The DNA of coral cells was also inhibited or completely destroyed by Oxybenzone causing an an increase in bleaching frequency in seven different types of coral. The team concluded that: “Oxybenzone poses a hazard to coral reef conservation, and threatens the resiliency of coral reefs to climate change.” And that instead of lathering up the lotion we should “Wear rash guards or scuba wetsuits and skip all the hygienic products when you go diving,” added Fauth. “If we could do it for a week at a time, people can certainly forgo it for a few hours to help protect these reefs for our children and their children to see.” Read the abstract and purchase the paper here!… More:


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