NOAA Researchers Discover Reef Bright Spots

Jun 21, 2016

Credit NOAA Photo Library / Flickr

  Scientists working to prevent coral reef destruction have stumbled onto some good news.

In one of the largest global studies reef studies, researchers discovered fifteen “Bright Spots” where reefs were doing better than expected.   The areas weren’t always pristine… but had more fish, and were more resilient to human impact and unfavorable environmental conditions.

Researchers conducted more than 6,000 reef surveys, in 46 different countries to learn what people in these areas did differently.  Josh Cinner is the lead scientist on the study.  He says the solution to protecting those reefs started at a local level.

In addition to the good areas, scientist also discovered a series of ‘Dark Spots’ where reefs were in worse shape than expected. Alan Friedlander is a Marine Biologist from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa.  He says a few places in the Hawaiian island that fall into this category.

 The study on marine reef bright spots was published in the science journal “Nature”. 

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