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Coral Reef Biome
Transcript of Coral Reef Biome
The Marine Biome
Plants and Animals
Animals in the reef have adapted by using camouflage which hides itself in its environment. Using camouflage, the animal can ambush prey or hide from predators.
Predators like the jellyfish and sea snake use venom to paralyze their prey. Other creatures use it to protect themselves from predators.
Sea creatures use armor to protect themselves from the attacks of predators. The blowfish has a unique armor of spikes that pop out when it is scared.
Zooxanthellae grow inside the polyps of coral for protection. In return, they give the coral vital nutrients.
Coralline algae secretes calcium carbonate to glue itself to the coral.
Sea grasses use their roots to anchor themselves to the soil to keep from floating away when a strong current comes.
Global warming not only heats up our atmosphere, but our oceans as well. This is dangerous to the heat sensitive coral organisms. Ocean warming may cause coral bleaching in which the coral polyps that are stressed by heat and radiation expel the algae that provides the coral with 80% of its energy. This causes the coral to turn white.
Water pollution is believed to be the leading cause of coral reef degradation. Oil, gas and pesticides poison coral and the organisms living in the coral reefs. Human and animal waste that is dumped into the ocean or into waterways that lead to the ocean increase the level of nitrogen in the water causing the overgrowth of algae that smother the coral by blocking sunlight. Trash can also choke and strangle animals and cut off the sunlight for coral.
Fishing in the sea causes permanent damage to coral reefs. By overfishing, a person can take too many fish from a single reef to sustain a population. Fishers may also go to extremes to get the fish they want. They may bang the coral with sticks to even use explosives to kill the fish in the reef.
Coral nurseries grow young coral in a safe environment. Once the coral is grown it is moved to a wild reef to increase the growth of other coral.
Scientists also identify corals and reefs that are resilient to climate impacts and local stresses so they can be used to restore unhealthy reefs.
A relationship that is mutually beneficial to both organisms.
Sea Anemone &
the Clown fish
train themselves to become immune
from anemone's poison.
Anemone provides protection & Clownfish lures food
and cleans up dead tentacles.
A relationship which benefits only one and not the other.
Glass Shrimp & Chocolate Chip Sea Star
Glass Shrimp are almost transparent and use
the sea star as camouflage from predators
A relationship which one benefits and the other is harmed.
Sea Spider & Table Coral
Sea spiders = parasite
Table Coral = host
Spider gains nutrients from coral by taking too many.
Biscayne National Park, Florida
American Samoa, Samoa Islands
John Pennekamp, Florida
Hikkaduwa, Sri Lanka
All species are fighting for the same resources which are limited.
Corals fighting for space
Fish fighting for food