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19
Researcher have found that an imbalance of nutrients in reef waters can increase the bleaching susceptibility of reef corals. Corals are made up of many polyps that jointly form a layer of living tissue covering the calcareous skeletons. They depend on single-celled algae called zooxanthellae, which live within the coral polyps. The coral animal and the associated zooxanthellae depend on each other for survival in a symbiotic relationship, where the coral supplies the algae with nutrients and a place to live. In turn, the algae offer the coral some products of their photosynthesis, providing them with an important energy source. High water temperatures can block photosynthetic reactions in the algal cells causing a build-up of toxic oxygen compounds, which threaten the coral and can result in a loss of the zooxanthellae.

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16
Coral Reefs has published online a study about an invasive species of brittle star. The species was previously restricted to Pacific waters, but surprisingly, growing populations have established themselves at distant points in the Atlantic. Its presence near Brazilian and Caribbean ports indicates that O. mirabilis could have been spread by shipping.

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16
South Pacific countries will experience more extreme floods and droughts, in response to increasing greenhouse gas emissions, according to a new article.

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10
A team of federal and university scientists on a 10-day expedition in the Gulf of Mexico has discovered Lophelia coral growing deeper than previously seen anywhere in the Gulf. Newly available information on Lophelia's growth rate and conditions will inform future environmental review and decision-making for the protection of deep-water coral habitats.

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06
Microbes, sponges, and worms -- the side effects of pollution and heavy fishing -- are adding insult to injury in Kenya's imperiled reef systems, according to a recent study.

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02
Scientists identify melanoma in the coral trout, a species found on the Great Barrier Reef and directly beneath the world's largest hole in the ozone layer.

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01
Rapid rates of coral reef growth have been identified in sediment-laden marine environments, conditions previously believed to be detrimental to reef growth. A new study has established that Middle Reef – part of Australia's iconic Great Barrier Reef – has grown more rapidly than many other reefs in areas with lower levels of sediment stress.

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21
NOAA Ship Oscar Elton Sette arrived back in its homeport of Honolulu a few days ago after a month in Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument. The team of 17 scientists collected nearly 50 metric tons of marine debris, which threatens monk seals, sea turtles and other marine life in the coral reef ecosystem, in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands (NWHI).

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