X

Coral Reefs can be Saved by Improving Quality of Water

by Krishna Bora on  August 20, 2012 at 11:05 AM Environmental Health   - G J E 4
A -A +
A research from the University of Southampton and the National Oceanography Center has found that coral reefs can be saved by improving water quality.
 Coral Reefs can be Saved by Improving Quality of Water
Coral Reefs can be Saved by Improving Quality of Water

Corals are made up of many polyps that jointly form a layer of living tissue covering the calcareous skeletons. They depend on single-celled algae called zooxanthellae, which live within the coral polyps.

The coral animal and the associated zooxanthellae depend on each other for survival in a symbiotic relationship, where the coral supplies the algae with nutrients and a place to live. In turn, the algae offer the coral some products of their photosynthesis, providing them with an important energy source.

High water temperatures can block photosynthetic reactions in the algal cells causing a build-up of toxic oxygen compounds, which threaten the coral and can result in a loss of the zooxanthellae.

Without the algae, corals appear white, a state which is often referred to as 'bleached'. Bleaching often leads to coral death and mass coral bleaching has had already devastating effects on coral reef ecosystems.

The study of University of Southampton, published in the latest issue of the journal Nature Climate Change, has found that nutrient enrichment of the water can increase the probability of corals to suffer from heat-induced bleaching.

Within the coral, the growth of zooxanthellae is restricted by the limited supply of nutrients. This allows the algae to transfer a substantial amount of their photosynthetically fixed carbon to the coral, which is crucial for the symbiotic relationship.

Post your Comments

Comments should be on the topic and should not be abusive. The editorial team reserves the right to review and moderate the comments posted on the site.
User Avatar
* Your comment can be maximum of 2500 characters
Notify me when reply is posted I agree to the terms and conditions

Most Popular News on Medindia

P
M
View All >>
X

Ask an Expert

Ask an Expert+
s
Meddling With 'Mating Plug' of Male Malaria Mosqu...
 Meddling With 'Mating Plug' of Male Malaria Mosquito can Help to Control Epidemic
S  Maastricht Drug Trade Boosted by the Dutch 'Cannabis Card'
Maastricht Drug Trade Boosted by the Dutch 'Canna...