[Coral-List] Another question about coral disease
cdh5 at cornell.edu
Wed Mar 8 11:24:45 EST 2006
The syndrome in your pictures looks similar to an Acropora white
syndrome that has been reported throughout the Barrier Reef in
Australia, and also in Palau and Marshall Islands. Bette Willis'
group at James Cook has done work on the causative microorganism, and
she is collaborating with others working on that similar syndrome at
other locations in the Pacific. Her email is Bette.Willis at jcu.edu.au
White Syndrome on the GBR has in the past been sensitive to
temperature warming, so it is possible this warm season could be a
triggering event on your reefs. I agree with Josh's excellent point
that there could be a corallivorous predator involved, because of the
particular locations near the base of those dead tissue areas. I've
certainly seen Drupella damage similar to that. It sounds as though
you have already attempted to rule that out.
We will be very interested to hear how this ends up. It will be
valuable to note this if it is a new outbreak of White Syndrome in
>These photos have been taken at Gove/Nhulunbuy area, Arafura sea,
>the Northern Territory, Australia (GPS reading: S12 04.413; E136
>White spots and bands on Acropora corals are not related to coral
>bleaching (quite often affected colonies are located 0.5-1 m deeper
>than unaffected colonies). Also, spots location and distribution
>pattern excludes coral bleaching as a cause of these white spots).
>Predators like Crown-of-thorn starfish are not found in the area
>and Drupiella gastropods are rare.
>What is that, a "white band disease"?
>Your suggestions are appreciated
>Dr Victor Gomelyuk
>Parks & Wildlife Commission
>of the Northern Territory
>Darwin, NT, Australia 0812
>Coral-List mailing list
>Coral-List at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
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