[Coral-List] Endangered species status will be considered for 82 corals

Douglas Fenner dfenner at blueskynet.as
Fri Feb 12 03:34:02 EST 2010

The U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) section of NOAA has decided that the petition to list 83 species of corals as either threatened or endangered, had sufficient information supporting listing 82 of those species, such that it will make a full review of their status.  One species (Oculina varicosa) was ruled not to have been sufficiently supported and will not be reviewed.
     The petition was submitted by the Center for Biological Diversity, and can be downloaded from their website at www.biologicaldiversity.org  Do a search on "coral" (upper right) to find the petition.
      The petition was primarily based on the paper in Science that a third of reef corals have elevated risk of extinction:
Carpenter, K. E., Abrar M., Aeby G., Aronson R., Bruckner A., Delbeek C., DeVantier L., Edgar G., Edwards A., Fenner, D. and 29 others.  2008.  One third of reef building corals face elevated extinction risk from climate change and local impacts.  Science 321: 560-563.

      The petition makes the argument that these corals are endangered in large part because of climate change.
      NMFS has a year from the original filing date (Oct 09) to make a final decision.  They are asking for submissions of information on these corals.  Submissions must be made by April 12.  A full explanation of the ruling and the request for submissions, where to send submissions and the deadline, are all in an article in a U.S. government publication, the "Federal Register" Vol 75, No. 27, Feb 10, 2010, p. 6616.

To view this article in the Federal Register, go to  http://www.gpoaccess.gov/fr/retrieve.html   then click on 2010, and enter page number 6616 at the bottom.  That will bring up the first page, and you can then go to the second page, etc.

Douglas Fenner
Dept Marine & Wildlife Resources
American Samoa

Are the World's Coral Reefs on Death Row??

The video of a speech by Charlie Veron to the Royal Society can be watched at: https://www.zsl.org/science/news/join-our-campaign-to-save-the-worlds-coral,1209,AR.html

Veron, J.E.N., Hoegh-Guldberg, O., et al.  2009.  The coral reef crisis: The critical importance of <350 ppm CO2.  Marine Pollution Bulletin 58: 1428-1436.  (open access)

Veron, J.E.N.  2008.  Mass extinctions and ocean acidification: biological constraints on geological dilemmas.  Coral Reefs 27: 459-472.    (selected best paper of the year by the journal)

Veron, J.E.N.  2008.  A Reef in Time, the Great Barrier Reef from beginning to end.  Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Mass.  289 pp.

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