Category Archives: Uncategorized

Need Another Reason to Conserve Mangrove Habitats? Think about Your Economy.

Mangroves are a very important ecosystem, and yet they are one of the most threatened and fastest disappearing. Since 1980, between 20 and 35% of mangrove area has been cleared, largely to accommodate coastal development and aquaculture.1 As seen in Figure … Continue reading

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A biological House of Cards

Why estimate biodiversity? Why do we even care? The total biodiversity can be used to represent the total amount of information we can learn. The gap between the number of species currently known and the estimated total number of species … Continue reading

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Sponges and Christmas Tree Worms and Corals, Oh My!

We’ve arrived at the last installment of my blog series on colors and coral reefs! I’ve talked about coral pigmentation in relation to coral bleaching and coral reef fish colors, also in relation to coral bleaching. In this post, I’m … Continue reading

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This Fish is No Damsel in Distress

You may be used to hearing about damsels in distress but, as you’ll see, damselfish do not necessarily fit this cliché. To give a little background, damselfish are herbivorous fish that have actually been known to be a key beneficial … Continue reading

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How we can create 3,200 coral reefs in the Gulf of Mexico

In my last post, I discussed a deeply worrying situation that unfolded last year in the East Flower Garden Banks. Thankfully, last year’s bleaching event appears to have been resolved, and the reef is now in recovery. Scientists looking to … Continue reading

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Soft corals aren’t so soft on Parkinson’s Disease

In my last blog post, I discussed the use of coral skeletons as bone grafts in patients with degenerative bone diseases. However, most of the medical advances from coral is in the field of pharmacology, that is, the study of … Continue reading

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Be Wary of the New Fish in Town

Many aquariums boast exhibits of exotic fish from faraway places. While these may seem like harmless attractions behind the glass, these fish don’t always stay behind glass. Oftentimes, these foreign fish are released into local waters, altering their new environment. In my … Continue reading

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Corals of the Caribbean: White Band’s Ghost

Coral reefs are resilient yet gentle ecosystems that are affected by several diseases. They have overtaken the Caribbean reefs and have become a serious deteriorating factor. In my last post I talked about the effect of the Black Band Disease on … Continue reading

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El Niños Past and Present

While it is clear that the current ENSO-driven mass bleaching event has been devastating and widespread, to put it in perspective, it’s essential to look back and compare it to similar incidents in the past. Some of these, which you … Continue reading

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Can Climate Change Cause Diseases in Our Coral Reefs?

Corals are living organisms and as such they are susceptible to diseases. High temperatures can affect the severity of diseases. High temperature is a stressor and as such it can decrease an organisms immune response and increase the virulence of … Continue reading

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