Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Corals Stay Close to Home

Date:
June 27, 2009
Source:
Wiley - Blackwell
Summary:
New DNA analysis reveals that corals in one locality are more closely related than previously thought; results have significant implications for coral conservation.

Scientists sampled DNA from coral reefs in the Indiana Ocean and found that individual corals located in the same group of reefs are more closely related than previously thought.
Credit: iStockphoto/Martin Strmko

The thought of coral reefs tends to conjure up images of tropical vacations, complete with snorkeling among tropical fish in crystal clear waters.

Rapid climate change, and increased pollution, ocean acidification and overfishing threaten to darken this picture considerably. These factors heavily stress corals, and thus put both the countless marine organisms that count on corals for habitat and shelter, and the $1 billion dollar tourism industry fueled by coral reefs at significant risk.

Conservation biologists have been scrambling to find ways to conserve and protect these remarkable sea creatures. However, the design of marine reserves requires knowledge of the distances moved by the mobile juvenile stage of corals so that the natural processes that maintain healthy populations can be encouraged.

A recent study published in Evolutionary Applications by Australian biologist Jim Underwood has found surprisingly that despite the fact that corals cast their eggs and sperm haphazardly into the oceans, certain species of coral show remarkable fidelity to their home range.

Underwood sampled DNA from coral reefs in the Indiana Ocean and found that individual corals located in the same group of reefs are more closely related than previously thought.

These results suggest that since most recruitment of these Indian Ocean coral populations comes from other locally sourced coral, one cannot depend on genetic material from distant populations of corals to replenish or restore degraded local populations. In these regions, marine reserves that maintain high local genetic diversity should be favoured.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Wiley - Blackwell. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Underwood et al. Genetic diversity and divergence among coastal and offshore reefs in a hard coral depend on geographic discontinuity and oceanic currents. Evolutionary Applications, 2009; 2 (2): 222 DOI: 10.1111/j.1752-4571.2008.00065.x

Cite This Page:

Wiley - Blackwell. "Corals Stay Close to Home." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 June 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090626084636.htm>.
Wiley - Blackwell. (2009, June 27). Corals Stay Close to Home. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090626084636.htm
Wiley - Blackwell. "Corals Stay Close to Home." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090626084636.htm (accessed April 23, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Leopard Bites Man in India

Raw: Leopard Bites Man in India

AP (Apr. 22, 2014) A leopard caused panic in the city of Chandrapur on Monday when it sprung from the roof of a house and charged at rescue workers. (April 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Iowa College Finds Beauty in Bulldogs

Iowa College Finds Beauty in Bulldogs

AP (Apr. 22, 2014) Drake University hosts 35th annual Beautiful Bulldog Contest. (April 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
805-Pound Shark Caught Off The Coast Of Florida

805-Pound Shark Caught Off The Coast Of Florida

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) One Florida fisherman caught a 805-pound shark off the coast of Florida earlier this month. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Breakfast Foods Are Getting Pricier

Breakfast Foods Are Getting Pricier

AP (Apr. 21, 2014) Breakfast is now being served with a side of sticker shock. The cost of morning staples like bacon, coffee and orange juice is on the rise because of global supply problems. (April 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins