Bonaire's Resilient Reefs Offer Hope for Dying Corals
Source: Inter Press Service
September 29, 2010
Bonaire, Dutch Antilles - Scientists are closely examining the reefs of this island just north of Venezuela to determine why it has escaped the devastation that wiped out 85 percent of the Caribbean's corals since the 1970s.
Just in the past 30 years, coral cover in the Caribbean has gone from a healthy 65 percent to perhaps 20 percent. New diseases and algae invasions have wiped out much of the corals that stretch from the southeastern U.S. state of Florida, where the coral cover is tiny, to Bonaire, where a good portion of those last 20 percent is located. The Caribbean coast of Central America is equally damaged.
Warmer, more acidic oceans predicted for the future because of climate change are expected to wreak even more devastation on the survivors. When the water gets too warm, the corals appear to beach and then usually die.
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