Sea Technology

JUN 2014

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58 st / June 2014 www.sea-technology.com Climate Change Will Localize Coral Reef Growth Researchers have found that in- creasing ocean temperatures due to climate change will soon see reefs retaining and nurturing more of their own coral larvae, leaving large reef systems less interconnected. The study, which was published in Nature Climate Change, was conduct- ed by Nova Southeastern University's Oceanographic Center, the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, the School of Marine and Tropical Biology at James Cook University in Australia, and Sesoko Station, Tropical Biosphere Re- search Center at the University of the Ryukyus, Japan. These fndings have both positive and negative implications. At higher temperatures more coral larvae will tend to stay on their birth reef. This is good news in an other- wise cloudy picture for isolated reefs, because in the future they will be able to retain more of their own larvae and recover faster from severe storms or bleaching events. While more coral larvae will stay close to their parents, fewer will dis- perse longer distances, leaving reefs less connected. The loss of connectivity can make reef systems such as the Great Barrier Reef (in Australia) or the Florida Coral Reef Barrier more vulnerable, so inter- connected reef systems that depend on the recruitment of coral larvae may take more time to recover after a dis- turbance, such as a hurricane, because fewer larvae will disperse from other reefs to the disturbed reef. Weaker connections between reefs can mean that warm-adapted corals, such as those in the Caribbean, may take longer to expand their ranges to the north. Similarly, for isolated reefs, while these can retain more of their own lar- vae, they are left with fewer possibili- ties to change their species composi- tion to adjust to climate change. The results demonstrate that global warming will change patterns of larval connectivity among reefs. On a posi- tive note, the stronger link between adults and recruits means an even greater beneft if local threats are re- duced, such as dredging and fshing methods that can damage corals. NOAA Hydrographic Survey Season Opens NOAA ships, small boats and hy- drographic services contractors have their sailing orders to survey more than 2,000 square nautical miles in U.S. coastal waters this year, collecting data that will strengthen the foundation of U.S. environmental intelligence. The NOAA Offce of Coast Survey will manage and conduct surveys that will measure water depths and collect seafoor data to update nautical charts, identify navigational hazards, support wind farm sitings, map ocean habitats, and assist state governments with their ocean projects. In one project, NOAA Ship Thomas Jefferson will survey in Long Island Sound, performing habitat mapping in Fishers Island Sound as well as con- tinuing post-Sandy hydrographic sur- veys. Since vibrant tourism and com- mercial fshing industries mean more ocean traffc, NOAA ships Rainier and Fairweather will gather hydrographic data to supplement old and sparse depth measurements on nautical charts covering Alaska's Kodiak Island. This year's plans also include data acquisition in San Francisco Bay, San Pablo Bay, Suisun Bay, and Richmond Harbor, California, to address chart- ing discrepancies; Carquinez Strait, California, to chart a shoal that has migrated toward the federal shipping channel; Galveston Bay, Texas, and vicinity in response to requests by pi- lots and port authorities; St. Andrew Bay's Grand Lagoon, Florida, to inves- tigate shoaling and a changing channel course; West Bay and West Bay Creek, along the Intracoastal Waterway north of Panama City, Florida; and a pro- posed anchorage area near Jackson- ville, Florida, to investigate reported hazards to navigation. Longest Underwater Stay Planned for This Fall This fall, Roane State Community College associate professor of biology Bruce Cantrell and adjunct instruc- ocean research www.bartington.com Mag648 Magnetic Field Sensors • Applications in ROV directional compassing • Mag648S: submersible to 2000m • Low power: <15mW consumption • Noise levels down to <10pTrms/√Hz @ 1Hz • Unpackaged versions available for integration into customer systems JUN2014.indd 58 6/4/14 12:15 PM

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