Under certain conditions, a reef can support either a thriving coral community or a lush seaweed field, depending on what it started with. Credit: Kai Kopecky, Russ Schmitt Tropical reefs are vulnerable ecosystems, sensitive to a variety of environmental conditions and disturbances, which can change their composition from vibrant coral […]

For scientists attempting to understand how reef ecosystems function, like this one in Palau, they must determine how photosynthetic rates respond to a variety of environmental stressors, including temperature, light availability, carbon dioxide levels, and nutrient availability. A recent study published in the journal PLoSOne demonstrates that reefs, like terrestrial […]

Credit: Shutterstock For the past few million years the world’s oceans have existed in a slightly alkaline state, with an average pH of 8.2. Now, with carbon emissions escalating, there is more CO₂ in the world’s atmosphere. This dissolves in the oceans, altering the chemistry of the seawater by lowering the pH and making it […]