Marine biologists are warning of the potential dangers of going to sea in a corals reef.
A study published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B said the risk of death from exposure to corals in a natural reef is “extremely high”.
The study, which looked at more than 40 studies, found that a marine scientist working in a reef with a coral population of 10 to 20 million people would be exposed to the risk “from a range of causes”.
“It is estimated that in a typical year, one in five people will die from coral bleaching and one in 10 will be exposed in a tropical reef.” “
Coral bleaching occurs when a coral dies due to an attack by coral fungus, which normally grows in water. “
It is estimated that in a typical year, one in five people will die from coral bleaching and one in 10 will be exposed in a tropical reef.”
Coral bleaching occurs when a coral dies due to an attack by coral fungus, which normally grows in water.
This causes the coral to lose its coral cover and die.
The researchers analysed the death rates from different types of corals on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef and found that coral reefs with a population of 20 million were at risk of dying from coral disease in 20 years, compared with just one in 100 reefs with less than 10 million people.
The study also found that the death rate for a coral that was dead for 20 years was about 1 in 300, while a coral that was alive for 20 to 30 years was at risk for death.
“These are high mortality rates and it is hard to imagine anyone ever living for 20-30 years,” said Dr Smith.
“But even with a 20-year mortality rate, it is estimated there are around 700,000 coral reefs worldwide that are currently under threat.”
Corals are particularly vulnerable because they are very adaptable to environmental changes, including climate change, and because they can recover very quickly.
“If a coral is badly damaged or lost, its ability to thrive is reduced and the damage it does can be catastrophic.”
Coral reefs have been bleached by coral disease and the researchers say that “there is still a long way to go to prevent coral bleached reefs from dying of disease and mortality”.
The research is part of a wider campaign by the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Aquatic Sciences to tackle corals’ bleaching by creating and maintaining coral reef habitats that encourage coral to grow and thrive.
It is also part of the ongoing Global Reef Health Initiative launched by the UN to provide advice to governments, businesses and organisations on how to respond to coral bleaches and to protect coral reefs.
The Global Reef health Initiative, which is led by UNSW and the Australian Research Council, will provide $1.3 billion to assist Australia to help reefs recover from corals bleaching.