maximum depth 180 feet light needed for photosynthesis Water

Maximum depth 180 feet light needed for

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maximum depth = 180 feet (light needed for photosynthesis) Salinity = 27% – 40% Water temperatures = 18 0 C – 29 0 C (64 0 F – 85 0 F) Coral reefs provide, with their intricacies of spaces and three dimensional structure, a habitat for fish and invertebrates. Large coral reefs (like the Great Barrier Reef in Australia) can provide habitat for over 500,000 species of marine plants and animals .
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Reef Building (Colonial) Corals Hundreds of thousands to millions of corals accumulate together to form a biologically derived rock that we call a coral reef . A coral reef is a biologically derived sedimentary rock which is generations old. The world’s largest coral reef is off the northeast coast of Australia and is called the Great Barrier Reef. 1260 miles long 10 – 90 miles wide Includes at least 200 coral formed islands and keys. Was once the world’s largest coral system, but has been reduced to half its size over the past three decades. Evidence shows that the remaining reef does not have the same color and diversity as before .
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Coral Reefs – Symbiotic Relationship Coral Coral is an animal with a sac-like body making it a polyp. It is related to anemones and jellyfish. Corals secrete calcium carbonate (CaCO 3 ) from the lower half of their bodies, forming a hard, calcified external skeleton. Algae It is a microscopic, single celled photosynthetic plant that lives inside the cells that line the coral’s stomach wall. Algae convert solar to chemical energy through the process of photosynthesis .
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The relationship between a coral and the algae that lives in its stomach is mutually beneficial and therefore a symbiotic one . Each is dependent on the other for its survival. Each provides the other with vital nutrients. Algae using energy from the sun through photosynthesis they produce: a) oxygen b) organic matter (carbohydrates) Both are consumed by the coral which gets 60% of its nourishment from the algae. Algae also assist with the calcification process of the external skeleton.
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Coral Produce CO 2 and waste products that the algae utilize in photosynthesis. Coral reefs are green, gold, and brown from the algae living within them. Coral Reef Bleaching (Coral, algae, and bacteria are all involved.) Coral’s highest water temperature tolerance is 86 0 F (30 0 C). At that temperature bacteria (Vibrio shiloi) in the coral start multiplying out of control. The coral is irritated by this bacterial growth and expels (throws up) the algae that sustain its life. Without the algae, the coral dies, and its white limestone skeleton is exposed. White patches occurring on coral reefs indicate coral reef beaching has occurred . Coral reef beaching impairs the reef and causes it to stop growing.
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Severe bleaching kills the reef building corals, and the reef as a whole dies . The marine life that depends on the coral reef is destroyed as the reef dies. Less severely bleached coral reefs can sometimes recover, but a full recovery takes over a century.
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