Preservation of Coral Reefs

This topic submitted by Andrew Fuhrmann ( at 9:26 PM on 3/24/04.

Andrea and Joe return to the boat from Gaulin Reef in San Salvador, Bahamas. See other beautiful phenomena from the Bahamas.

Tropical Field Courses -Western Program-Miami University

There is no doubt that coral reefs are spectacular parts of our planets vast oceans. They are filled with vibrant colors and a wide variety of marine life forms. But if current trends continue, we will not be able to enjoy these sights much longer. "For example, the results of the first global survey of human impact on coral reefs involved 250 corals and 30 countries around the world. The surveys revieled no pristine reefs; in almost every case there were visable signs of human impacts (Hatziolos 4)." Some of these reefs were totally void of high valued species of coral. Were fishing for sharks, lobster, giant clam, and grouper was present there was evidence of "cyanide and blast fishing (Hatziolos 4)." Much of the reefs species are valuable and much of them are harvested relentlessly. These are not the only problems that modern coral reefs are experiencing. Much of the reef populations are enduring hardships due to polution resulting in less successful populations. If these problems and more continue at there current rates, our grandchildrem may not have these wonderful reefs to experience.


Biology of coral reefs:
- Reproduction
- life cycles
- energy concumption
- current status of coral reefs

Economic opportunities of coral reefs:
- tourism
- fishing industry

Human impacts on coral reefs:
- over eploitation
- over fishing of target species
- effects of coastal development
- distructive fishing practices
- cyanide fishing
- inland pollution and erosion
- marine pollution

What is being done?
- Eductating people about problems
- environmental organizations
- government intervention


1. Reefs At Risk: A Map-based Indicator of Threats to the World's Coral Reefs, By: Dirk Bryant, Lauretta Burke, John McManus, and Mark Spalding, World Resources Institute, 1998.

2. Integrated Coastal Zone Management of Coral Reefs: Decision Support Modeling, By: Kent Gustavson, Richard M. Huber, and Hack Ruitenbeek, The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Washington, D.C. 2000.

3. Coral Reefs: Challenges and Opportunities for Sustainable Management, By: Marea E. Hatziolos, Anthony J. Hooten, and Martin Fodor, The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Washington, D.C. 1998.

4. Reefs and Related Carbonates: Ecology and Sedimentology, By: Stanley H. Frost, Malcolm P. Weiss, and John B. Saunders, The American Associatin of Petroleum Geologists, Tulsa, Oklahoma, 1977.

5. Auquatic Invertabrate Cell Culture, By: Carmel Mothersill, and Brian Austin, Praxis Publishing, Chichester, UK, 2000.

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