May 1, 2007

CORAL IS DYING: A look at efforts to bring it back:

Mr. Nedimyer focuses most of his efforts on coral, something he got into almost by accident several years ago, through his work as a wholesale dealer in aquarium supplies, a business he has operated for 35 years. One of his products is “live rock,” reef rubble that bacteria colonize. In aquariums, the bacteria help break down waste from fish.

He had permission from the government to gather live rock at a particular site and one day about 10 years ago, he noticed that a few bits of rubble had something growing on them. “I didn’t know what it was at first,” he said. “I saw five of these little things. I kept watching them and pretty soon they started to grow out into staghorn coral.” He set the rocks aside, underwater, and managed to keep the coral growing in spite of storms and other problems. When he found broken pieces of coral he stuck them in other pieces of rock, and “sometimes they would live.”

Read the whole thing, which is very interesting.

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