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Coral gardening is benefiting Caribbean reefs, study finds

Tue, 25 Jul 2017 15:41:51 EDT ~ A new study found that Caribbean staghorn corals (Acropora cervicornis) are benefiting from 'coral gardening,' the process of restoring coral populations by planting laboratory-raised coral fragments on reefs. Find out more...

Shale gas development spurring spread of invasive plants in Pennsylvania forests

Thu, 20 Jul 2017 14:23:29 EDT ~ Vast swaths of Pennsylvania forests were clear-cut circa 1900 and regrowth has largely been from local native plant communities, but a team of researchers has found that invasive, non-native plants are making significant inroads with unconventional natural gas development. Find out more...

Coral reefs in the Gulf of Aqaba may survive global warming, new study finds

Thu, 20 Jul 2017 10:06:16 EDT ~ Coral reefs in the Red Seas Gulf of Aqaba can resist rising water temperatures, suggests new research. If they survive local pollution, these corals may one day be used to re-seed parts of the world where reefs are dying. The scientists urge governments to protect the Gulf of Aqaba Reefs. Find out more...

A super-algae to save our seas? Genetic engineering species to save corals

Thu, 20 Jul 2017 09:51:11 EDT ~ Solutions to climate change, and particularly its effects on the ocean, are needed now more than ever. Coral bleaching caused by climate change is a huge threat to coral reefs. Recent extreme bleaching events have already killed corals worldwide and permanent destruction of reefs is projected within the century if immediate action is not taken. However, genetically engineering a group of microalgae found in corals may enhance their stress tolerance to ocean warming and save coral reefs. Find out more...

The way rivers function reflects their ecological status and is rarely explored

Thu, 20 Jul 2017 09:50:33 EDT ~ A research project proposes going beyond the study of river ecosystems and incorporating into the studies routinely carried out a set of processes that regulate not only the fluxes of matter but also the fluxes of energy within an ecosystem. In a recently published paper, the group is proposing a new working framework to study the status of rivers. Find out more...

Bornean orangutans' canopy movements flag conservation targets

Tue, 18 Jul 2017 12:47:20 EDT ~ Bornean orangutans living in forests impacted by human commerce seek areas of denser canopy enclosure, taller trees, and sections with trees of uniform height, according to new research. These orangutans are critically endangered, and despite intense conservation efforts, their numbers continue to decline. Additional habitat management strategies that account for their presence in forests affected by logging and other human activity are needed to ensure the species' survival. Find out more...

Invasive plant species can enhance coastal ecosystems

Mon, 17 Jul 2017 15:08:43 EDT ~ Invasive plant species like seaweed can provide vital ecosystem functions in coastal areas where native habitats such as salt marshes and oyster reefs have severely declined. A new study finds that invasive species could be used to offset the loss of native habitats that provide storm protection, food production and other benefits to billions of people. Find out more...

Oil impairs ability of coral reef fish to find homes and evade predators

Mon, 17 Jul 2017 11:05:05 EDT ~ Just as one too many cocktails can lead a person to make bad choices, a few drops of oil can cause coral reef fish to make poor decisions. Oil impacts the higher-order thinking of coral reef fish in a way that could prove dangerous for them -- and for the coral reefs where they make their home. Find out more...

Climate change: Biodiversity rescues biodiversity in a warmer world

Fri, 14 Jul 2017 14:04:54 EDT ~ Climate change leads to loss of biodiversity worldwide. However, ecosystems with a higher biodiversity in the first place might be less affected a new study. Scientists found that when they experimentally warmed meadows, the diversity of nematode worms living in the soil went down in monocultures, whereas the opposite was true for meadows with many different herbaceous plant species. Find out more...

Botanists discover hundreds of species of fungi in deep coral ecosystems

Wed, 12 Jul 2017 11:04:38 EDT ~ Hundreds of potentially new species of fungi have been discovered in the deep coral ecosystem in the 'Au'au channel off Maui, Hawai'i. These mesophotic coral ecosystems are generally found at depths between 130 - 500 feet and possess abundant plant (algal) life as well as new fish species. Find out more...