[Coral-List] 20 newly listed coral species

Szmant, Alina szmanta at uncw.edu
Fri Sep 19 16:08:17 EDT 2014

I'd like to point out the irony about all this ESA stuff with the 20 species of corals,  each of which have probably millions of remaining individuals spread out over large geographic areas, and most of them have a number of congeners, compared to that of a terrestrial mammal, (formerly) ESA species, the grey wolf:  there are now after decades of ESA recovery programs  (many Millions of $) only a few hundred individuals remaining in most of it subpopulations, yet it has now been delisted in several US states (notoriously Idaho, Wyoming, Alaska) and now are being exterminated by shooting them from helicopters!  What sense does this make?  These are keystone predators, with documented important structural ecological importance in North American wilderness (what little there is left of this), and yet all these laws and programs really mean nothing if a single wolf happens to impact any human interest at all.   There are many hundreds of corals species; there is only one grey wolf species and maybe only one to three additional species of wolves world-wide, and all of them are threatened or endangered yet they are still hunted by Federal and State agencies as well as trophy hunters.   I honestly cannot get too worked up about the plight of these 20 coral species, or the reefs they are living on, as long as most people (including the members of coral list) give a blind eye to the ecological atrocities we perpetuate daily all around us everywhere we live.  Take off your blinders folks.  If we can't save the few remaining members of an ecological critical species, the species that gave origin to our beloved domestic dog, how can we pretend we are going to save a few coral species which most people can't tell apart from all the similar looking coral species.

"Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people." Eleanor Roosevelt

"The time is always right to do what is right"  Martin Luther King

Dr. Alina M. Szmant
Professor of Marine Biology
AAUS Scientific Diving Lifetime Achievement Awardee
Center for Marine Science
University of North Carolina Wilmington
5600 Marvin Moss Ln
Wilmington NC 28409 USA
tel:  910-962-2362  fax: 910-962-2410  cell: 910-200-3913

-----Original Message-----
From: coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov [mailto:coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov] On Behalf Of Steve Mussman
Sent: Friday, September 19, 2014 3:30 PM
To: Shaye Wolf; coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
Subject: Re: [Coral-List] 20 newly listed coral species

   Hi Shaye,
   Thanks for your clear explanation relating to the purpose and objectives of
   the Center for Biological Diversity and of the impending impacts of the ESA
   listing. Seems pretty straight forward to me. Listers have been discussing
   ways to increase public awareness of the issues affecting coral reefs for
   some time, so let's hope that this step will lead to broader concern and
   ultimately the implementation of a much needed plan of action. I would like
   to point out that the NY Times recently ran an Op-Ed piece that illustrates
   that at the very least the recent ESA listing is increasing exposure to the
   urgency of the issue at hand.
   Now,  we  just  need  to get behind the effort and continue to explore
   additional ways to enhance public awareness and sensibilities so that these
   20 corals may one day be added to the auspicious list of recovering plant
   and animal species .
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