Three new deep water reefs discovered off the coast of Florida

by Owen James

Lophelia coral reefs are fairly common, but often undocumented

Lophelia coral reefs are fairly common, but often undocumented

Image: SAFMC

Good news from Florida, where scientists have discovered several new Lophelia-dominated deep water coral reefs, and can now set about protecting them from dredging.

Here’s a snippet from Science Centric, spotted via the Marine Depot blog:

Vulnerable to bottom trawling fishing equipment that can turn a healthy reef into lifeless rubble, the CATALYST ONE expedition accomplished its objective to survey, map and identify areas that contain deep coral reefs. With this newly acquired information, Reed will submit these findings to the South Atlantic Fisheries Management Council to provide further data for their proposed Deep Coral Habitat Area of Particular Concern (HAPC) to protect these fragile reefs.

Reed has studied the deep coral reefs off Florida’s coast for more than 30 years, and he is largely responsible for gathering supporting data to make the case for the marine protected areas that now exist to protect the shallower Oculina coral reefs that are found 15 to 20 miles off Florida’s east coast.

If you want to learn more about deep water coral conservation, try Lophelia.org or this article on a scientific mission to map the reefs.

Check out Katy's Tropical Fish Guide for more aquarium info.

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{ 1 trackback }

Thre reef | Greengovtv
03.13.12 at 8:04 am

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

jeffry r. johnston 12.19.08 at 9:10 pm

Thanks for the link back! :-)

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