Bill Precht's reply

Precht,Bill BPrecht at
Tue Jun 30 11:12:23 EDT 1998


Thank you... and I could not agree more


> -----Original Message-----
> From:	lesk at [SMTP:lesk at]
> Sent:	Tuesday, June 30, 1998 9:11 AM
> To:	coral-list at
> Subject:	Bill Precht's reply
> Thank you, Bill, for that discussion of Belize.  One minor point, to
> file
> under "blind men and the elephant."  My comments re: Belize were from
> personal observations at Tobacco Reef and South Water Caye, as well as
> on
> mid-shelf reefs around Wee Wee and the Pelicans.   Tobacco and South
> Water
> (the spots I visited in 1997) sported luxuriant spurs of Agaricia
> tenuifolia, with isolated patches of A. palmata in shallow and
> scattered A.
> cervicornis sign and a few still-living, though embattled colonies.
> It's
> likely that heterogeneity in exposure and local conditions contaminate
> cross-shelf comparisons here, just as they do on the Great Barrier
> Reef.  I
> just connected the few places I'd been to with the Aronson and Precht
> story, and they happened to rhyme.  Bears a frightening resemblance to
> religion.
> On a graver note, after all this discussion of the importance of
> interacting factors, in explaining our collective wisdom to the public
> shouldn't we continually emphasize that whatever the unique
> combination of
> factors responsible for the death of a specific reef, the prevailing
> factors include several that we CAN do a great deal about?  Even if
> overfishing and eutrophication are not the universal causes of reef
> death
> this year, there is no excuse for them in the first place, and
> ameliorating
> them will hasten reef recovery in any event.
> Les Kaufman
> Boston University Marine Program
> Department of Biology
> Boston University
> 5 Cummington Street
> Boston, MA 02215
> e-mail: lesk at
> phone: 617-353-5560
> fax:   617-353-6340
> "I believe we are on an irreversible trend toward more freedom and
> democracy... but that could change."
> -Vice President Dan Quayle, 5/22/89

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