Australian coral reef regenerates after more than 10 years

Scientists have found that a system of reefs near the coast of Australia “resurrected” in the last decade, after having lost 70% to 90% of its biodiversity according to measurements taken in 1998.

The study was conducted by researchers from James Cook University and the Australian Institute of Marine Science University of Western Australia, and was released on Thursday (4th).

The Scott reef system, located in the coastal region west of the country, was hit by bleaching, a “disease” of corals that occurred due to climate change, according to the study. However, in the last 12 years, the coverage of the barrier reef rose from 9% in 1998 to 44% in 2010, according to scientists.

The research, published this week in the journal “Science” has amazing results because researchers believed that recovery depended on the bleaching of coral larvae from other next. But Scott Reef is situated about 250 km from other corals in an isolated position.

The researchers suggest that herbivorous fish, which remained abundant in the system Scott, their bodies carried in microscopic algae needed for the resurgence of corals.

These conditions may have provided a suitable environment in which young corals settled and grew“, the scientists said in a statement released by “Science”.

The study highlights that the recovery has been helped by the absence of humans in the barrier reef, which lies in a secluded position. It is possible that reef systems recover with nature’s resources, especially when the fish are plentiful and human activities are limited, suggest scientists.

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