[Coral-List] Coral mortality in a warmer and acidified ocean

Nicole Crane nicrane at cabrillo.edu
Sat Jan 28 11:18:45 EST 2017

I will plead ignorance as I have not read the paper…but as scientists of living systems - interacting with their non-living systems know, it is as much about the speed and nature of change in the non-living systems as the change itself that controls biological system response.  Documenting historical change is not enough empirical evidence.  There is a nuance to the nature of that change that needs to be captured too.  Again, maybe it was captured in the paper I don’t know.  But the synopsis below is far too simplified.


> On Jan 27, 2017, at 7:45 AM, Risk, Michael <riskmj at mcmaster.ca> wrote:
> Fascinating, Gene.
> I await feedback from the rest of the 8,000-odd on the -list, those who are still able to respond after the recent political changes in your county.
> The implication, or the inevitable conclusion, is that the recent decline in Acropora has been caused by local stresses, not global change. This is something many in the reef community find hard to accept.
> Mike
> ________________________________________
> From: coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov [coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml..noaa.gov] on behalf of Eugene Shinn [eugeneshinn at mail.usf.edu]
> Sent: January 25, 2017 12:43 PM
> To: coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> Subject: [Coral-List] Coral mortality in a warmer and acidified ocean
> *In addition to the paper reviewed in the previous Coral-list here is A
> review published in the blog Co2 Science   Gene
> *
> *Paper Reviewed*
> Stolarski, J., Bosellini, F.R., Wallace, C.C., Gothmann, A.M., Mazur,
> M., Domart-Coulon, I., Gutner-Hoch, E., Neuser, R.D., Levy, O., Shemesh,
> A. and Meibom, A. 2016. A unique coral biomineralization pattern has
> resisted 40 million years of major ocean chemistry change. /Scientific
> Reports/ *6*: 27579, DOI: 10.1038/srep27579.
> Publishing their work in the journal /Scientific Reports/, the team of
> eleven international researchers compared the skeletal structures of
> living /Acropora/ corals with those of well-preserved fossil /Acropora/
> skeletons from the Eocene, Oligocene, and Miocene, noting that these
> latter organisms "have experienced major fluctuations in atmospheric CO2
> levels (from greenhouse conditions of high pCO2 in the Eocene to low
> pCO2 ice-house conditions in the Oligocene-Miocene) and a dramatically
> changing ocean Mg/Ca ratio." By doing so, it could therefore be
> empirically determined whether or not higher levels of CO2 (i.e., ocean
> acidification) truly are a detriment to corals, interfering with the
> process of calcification and disrupting or weakening skeletal structure.
> So is that what they found? Were these major reef building corals harmed
> by ocean acidification and temperature changes of conditions past?
> In a word, /no/. In stark contrast, in fact, Stolarski /et al/. report
> that "the most diverse, widespread, and abundant reef-building coral
> genus /Acropora/ (20 morphological groups and 150 living species) has
> not only survived these environmental changes, but has maintained its
> distinct skeletal biomineralization pattern for at least 40 My." Such
> "remarkable evolutionary stability," they continue, "exists despite
> major global geochemical fluctuations, from greenhouse (high pCO2)
> conditions and low seawater Mg/Ca (calcitic seas) in the Eocene to
> icehouse (low pCO2) conditions and rapidly increasing Mg/Ca (aragonite
> seas) during the Oligocene-Miocene."
> The take home message of the Stolarski /et al/. paper is that the
> skeletal formation process of /Acropora/ is, as they state, "strongly
> biologically controlled," uninhibited by changes in temperature or
> seawater chemistry, including seawater pH/ocean acidification conditions
> that are predicted to occur over the course of the next century and beyond.
> --
> No Rocks, No Water, No Ecosystem (EAS)
> ------------------------------------ -----------------------------------
> E. A. Shinn, Courtesy Professor
> University of South Florida
> College of Marine Science Room 221A
> 140 Seventh Avenue South
> St. Petersburg, FL 33701
> <eugeneshinn at mail.usf.edu>
> Tel 727 553-1158
> ---------------------------------- -----------------------------------
> _______________________________________________
> Coral-List mailing list
> Coral-List at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> http://coral.aoml.noaa.gov/mailman/listinfo/coral-list
> _______________________________________________
> Coral-List mailing list
> Coral-List at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> http://coral.aoml.noaa.gov/mailman/listinfo/coral-list

More information about the Coral-List mailing list