Mangrove & Coral Destruction

Miles of mangrove trees Miles of mangrove trees have died in recent years along the coast of Angola due to a combination of environmental factors, including oil spills. Photo: Joe Hughes

Widespread destruction of mangroves (Bahamas, Australia) and Coral Reefs (Caribbean, Red Sea) has resulted in the loss of some of the worlds most diverse ecosystems. As a side effect, this has greatly increased shoreline hazards and beach erosion rates. The greatest benefit of mangroves is their ability to reduce storm surge. This benefit is long-term and requires no maintenance. The 1999 super typhoon, Orissa, killed over 10,000 people in India drowning many with its powerful storm surge. This number could have been lower if the mangroves had been retained. Mangroves are lost because of clearing for development, logging, and shrimp farming. Coral reefs are lost by mining (Bali, Indonesia), sedimentation from agriculture on the upland (St. Croix, Virgin Islands), bad fishing techniques that kill corals (Pacific Islands), sedimentation from nourished beaches (Waikiki) and a host of other natural and global warming-related causes. Dubai is perhaps the single greatest example of coral reef destruction. The artificial islands built there buried vast coral reefs. Mangroves and coral reefs often provide protection for nearby beaches. Their destruction harms the beach as well.

Surfing in / Mangrove and Coral Destruction

Can killer robots save ocean ecosystems?

Few predators can match the devastating impact of the lion fish. Since arriving in US waters in the 1980s, these fearsome creatures have left a trail of destruction along the Atlantic Coast, from Rhode Island to Venezuela. Lionfish can reduce a flourishing coral reef to barren wasteland in a matter of weeks.

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Pacific Ocean’s hidden wonders revealed on dive to underwater volcano

Scientists believe they have identified a new species of coral and found a rare Dumbo octopus during an expedition 3,000ft (900m) down in the Pacific Ocean.

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Hiding in plain sight: Vast reef found hiding behind Great Barrier Reef

James Cook University, University of Sydney and Queensland University of Technology scientists working with laser data from the Royal Australian Navy have discovered a vast reef behind the familiar Great Barrier Reef.

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Sri Lankan mangroves respond to conservation plan

A year after Sri Lanka launched a mangrove conservation plan, about half of its 37,000 hectares of mangrove forests are in a various stage of revival, officials say.

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World’s deepest blue hole found in South China Sea

A new exploration of a legendary blue hole in the South China Sea has found that the underwater feature is the deepest known on Earth.

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On first International Day, UNESCO calls for protection of mangrove ecosystems

Mangroves are rare and vital ecosystems that help to protect coastlines and mitigate the effects of climate change, but their survival is being jeopardized, the United Nations cultural agency said July 26th,2016, on first World’s Mangrove Day, calling for greater preservation efforts as the international community marks the first ever International Day for the Conservation of the Mangrove Ecosystem.

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A new power plant could devastate the world’s largest mangrove forest

The planet’s largest mangrove forest could be facing serious trouble in the form of two new coal-fired power plants, environmentalists say — and they’re urging the United Nations to draw greater attention to the issue.

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Tanzania: Mangrove Project Bears Fruit

Thanks to a mangrove planting project, villagers have managed to protect their areas, where seawater had been regularly spilling over the farms destroying their crops, and conserve the environment by involving members of the public in planting mangroves.

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Massive mangrove die-off on Gulf of Carpentaria worst in the world

Climate change and El Niño have caused the worst mangrove die-off in recorded history, stretching along 700km of Australia’s Gulf of Carpentaria. And last week it was revealed warm ocean temperatures had wiped out 100km of important kelp forests off the coast of Western Australia.

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Recent / Mangrove and Coral Destruction

In a Harsh Desert, a Watery Forest Survives

June 14th, 2016

The mangroves of Qeshm Island, are uniquely adapted to their brutal surroundings, which are characterized by searing heat, little rainfall, and high salinity.

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The Great Barrier Reef: a catastrophe laid bare

June 7th, 2016

Australia’s natural wonder is in mortal danger. Bleaching caused by climate change has killed almost a quarter of its coral this year and many scientists believe it could be too late for the rest. Using photographs and new data, a Guardian special report investigates how the reef has been devastated – and what can be done to save it.

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Great Barrier Reef Near Whitsunday Islands

June 2nd, 2016

The Great Barrier Reef is the largest reef system on Earth, with more than 3,000 separate reefs and coral cays. It is also one of the most complex natural ecosystems, with 600 types of corals and thousands of animal species from tiny planktons to whales.

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Queensland’s mangrove ecosystem dying in secret

May 20th, 2016

There have been large scale diebacks of mangrove trees in the Gulf of Carpentaria. Scientists are not exactly sure what happened up there in the most remote areas of Queensland, but they know the damage is extensive and unprecedented.

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Mangroves die-off in Queensland’s Gulf Country and Limmen Bight

May 13th, 2016

Experts have been focusing on hundreds of kilometres of mangroves along the coast in Queensland, that have turned a ghostly white. Serious concerns about the situation, which is compared to coral bleaching happening on the Great Barrier Reef, which is the result of warmer ocean temperatures, are raised.

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Continental drift created biologically diverse coral reefs

May 7th, 2016

An international research team has studied the geographical pattern of the evolution of corals and reef fish. Their findings show that today’s geographical distribution of tropical marine diversity is the result of 100 million years of Earth history and the continental drifts that shifted the position of shallow reef habitats.

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Florida’s coral reefs rapidly ‘wasting away’ under stress of climate change

May 4th, 2016

Accelerated acidification of coastal waters has brought about structural decline of only reef in continental US, initially pegged by scientists at around 2050

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Students Reviving Mangrove Wetlands, Bahamas

April 27th, 2016

Students participated in a pilot programme called the Bahamas Awareness of Mangroves (BAM), a project about mangrove education and restoration.

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Endangered mangroves found in Cairns, Queensland

April 13th, 2016

An endangered species of mangrove previously found only in Asia has been discovered in far north Queensland. Environmentalists hope the discovery of mangrove species in north Queensland will aid calls for greater protection of fragile wetlands.

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New database gives scientists hope for helping coral reefs

April 9th, 2016

With the future of coral reefs threatened now more than ever, researchers have announced the release of a new global database that enables scientists and managers to more quickly and effectively help corals survive their many challenges.

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