The Great Barrier Reef Isn't Looking So Good

Nature |

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Global warming has affected millions of creatures and landscapes. Although, none has been more devastated than the Great Barrier Reef; The number of fish, coral, plants and animal life that have been affected by this devastating phenomenon. Global warming and overfishing in particular have destroyed fish; many fish species are being completely wiped out in regions like the Great Barrier Reef. White striped Humbug Damsel Fish are one of the species. 

Justin Marshall has cited the lack of fish; a member of the science program Coral Watch has attributed the desolation of fish to the “complete ecosystem collapse.” Without the aid of plantlike like corals fish don’t have the shelter or resources they need to survive. A lot of fish feed off of the coral in these reefs and need other types of plants to survive.

Without a lot of fish Marshall attests that the coral could face insurmountable obstacles in rebuilding and re-growing in places like the Great Barrier Reef. Even if certain amounts of coral that survive can’t be saved entirely due to massive coral bleaching. Soft corals that exist on Lizard Island have been tested greatly by global warming.

Those that have the resilience to survive harsher climates and warmer waters have an increased amount of bleach in their stems. Many corals have remained in this state since the beginning of the global warming effects. Some anemones that were observed actually held on to life, pushing back against bleaching due to some evolutionary standards.

Overall, Justin Marshall concluded that more than 90 percent of branching corals had perished around Lizard Island.

Many of the giant corals that had been alive for thousands of years had died. Most of these giants outlived several generations of humans, but ended up being ironically destroyed by them. 

Coral, anemones and giant clams tend to get bleached when water temperatures are too high for too long. They become stressed and expel colored algae that provide a symbiotic energy between plants. Once their energy is expired, the corals become weak and white, appearing to be “bleached.” 

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Kevin Rollins

Contributor

One of the most energetic writers we have on staff, Kevin comes in to work every day with an upbeat attitude and a willingness to learn something new each day. His infectious attitude has made our team a tight knit group and why he has been promoted to team lead by his peers. He focuses on our positive and inspirational stories as well as leads a team of writers.