Diversity of Corals, Algae in Warm Indian Ocean Suggests Resilience to Future Global Warming
February 15, 2010
Penn State researchers and their international collaborators have discovered a diversity of corals harboring unusual species of symbiotic algae in the warm waters of the Andaman Sea in the northeastern Indian Ocean.
"The existence of so many novel coral symbioses thriving in a place that is too warm for most corals gives us hope that coral reefs and the ecosystems they support may persist—at least in some places—in the face of global warming," said the team's leader, Penn State Assistant Professor of Biology Todd LaJeunesse. According to LaJeunesse, the comprehensiveness of the team's survey, which also included analysis of the corals and symbiotic algae living in the cooler western Indian Ocean and Great Barrier Reef area of Australia, is unparalleled by any other study.
The team's findings will be published during the week ending 20 February 2010 in an early online issue of the Journal of Biogeography.
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