Coral reefs’ fleshy future

As oceans become more acidic, fleshy coral relatives may outcompete their reef-building counterparts.

In the prestigious scientific journal Nature, preeminent coral reef scientists recently told the world that it’s time for a change in expectations: “We have to accept that coral reefs around the world are transforming rapidly into a newly emerging ecosystem unlike anything humans have experienced before.”

Coral reefs as we know them are dying. These fragile yet vital ecosystems are under assault from a vast array of forces, from local problems such as pollution and invasive species, to global warming, ocean acidification, and other widespread aggressors. But when corals die, they will not leave a void: other species will take their place. But what might this newly emerging ecosystem look like?

 

 

Christie Wilcox, Hakai Magazine, 4 July 2017. Full article.

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