Extinction Risks for Coral Reefs Essay example

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Coral reef ecosystems around the globe are threatened by human interferences and climate change. This has led to many scientists conducting studies on global coral reef ecosystems to gain a better understanding of the cause and effects of coral reef damage. In both Hodgson’s (1999) and Carpenter et al.’s (2008) studies, they are aware of the continuous degradation of global coral reef ecosystems. Hodgson's study involved conducting a survey on global coral reef ecosystems to see whether human actions were affecting the health of supposed pristine Coral reefs. Carpenter et al. incorporated Hodgson’s study into a compiled study about the possible extinction of reef building corals due to climate change and anthropogenic effects. Carpenter’s …show more content…
The coral reef surveyors were instructed to find the best sites that they believed had the most living coral and were thought to be least affected by human activities. This would allow Hodgson to determine if human activities were having an appreciable effect on the supposed pristine coral reefs, which were distant from urban centers. The invertebrate survey was undertaken at two depth intervals of 3m and 10m. Four 0.5 m wide by 20 m long belts were placed on the coral reef. Over a period of 3-5 minutes the observers counted the number of invertebrates found on the belts. The coral survey was performed, by placing four 20 m long belts on the coral substrate. At 0.5 m intervals the substrate on which the belts were lying was examined and recorded.
After the two and half month survey, the data was collected and interpreted by various means: Cluster analysis, Coral Reef Health Index (CRHI) and Distance Population Index (DPI). The coral reef site that had the highest number of a specific indicator organism was to be used as the baseline indicating the healthiest reef. The other sites would be measured of that site and compared for that specific organism. The cluster analysis divided the sites into nine groups of shared characteristics. This allowed Hodgson to determine if reefs of differing natural and anthropogenic factors were
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