bleaching behavior captured in video

see coral bleaching as it happens

For the first time scientists have captured the behavior of a coral as it is undergoing a bleaching event.  Using a combination of microscope, digital camera and smart tablet to record detailed time-lapse videos of a Heliofungia coral’s physical reaction to heat stress they discovered evidence that it employs pulsed inflation. While scientists have known coral bleaching happens when the relationship between the […]

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new zoantharian species

Sphenopus exilis

An unusual new solitary species of zoantharian was discovered while conducting SCUBA surveys around the southern Japanese island of Okinawa. These new polyps were found buried almost completely in the soft sediment of the seafloor with only their oral disks and tentacles protruding above the surface. Most known zoantharians are colonial but these newly discovered polyps are not only solitary but they also lack zooxanthellae. Up to now […]

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corals may need a dose of C

Newly settled mustard hill corals use vitamin C when building their exoskeletons, new research shows.

New research found that when free-floating larvae settle and calcify their skeletons genes associated with vitamin C transport kick on. Without enough C they may even get scurvy. While the process of calcification is not fully understood, Joshua Rosenthal of the University of Puerto Rico and colleagues measured which genes switched on when mustard hill corals (Porites astreoides) transitioned out […]

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