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First Workshop Held on Deeper Light-dependent Coral Ecosystems
This story entered on 11th Aug, 2008 07:52:28 AM PST

National and international scientists and resource managers recently gathered to help develop the first comprehensive strategy to identify and prioritize research and management needs of mesophotic (deeper light-dependent) coral ecosystems. These relatively pristine coral ecosystems are typically found in tropical and sub-tropical regions between 30-100+ meters in association with algal and sponge communities. Mesophotic coral ecosystems (MCEs) can serve as refugia for shallow water species, which may warrant special resource management attention. This protection will help maintain local and/or regional biodiversity under increasing threats from both natural and anthropogenic sources such as bleaching, disease, harmful fishing practices, overfishing, and climate change. NOAA’s National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS), and OER's National Undersea Research Program (NURP) in partnership with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) sponsored this first ever MCE workshop. The research strategy will guide NOAA, other governmental agencies, and academia as they explore these relatively unknown coral ecosystems.

Contact information:
Name: Kimberly Puglise
Tel: (301) 734-1007

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Updated: August 11, 2008