As the world faces the harsh consequences of climate change and global warming, fish communities in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef are losing color due to such harmful consequences. According to a recent Australian study, fishes may lose even more color as the oceans warm up, and corals continue to bleach. The reds, yellows, and green colors of coral reefs are also starting to fade due to bleaching events. A study recently published in Global Change Biology monitored the alterations in fish community coloration and the environments they live in.
According to ecologist Chris Hemingson and his James Cook University co-workers, coral reefs in the future may not be as colorful as it is today. Their research suggests that coral reefs may be at a transformation point and might lose their color every year. The study examined details and figures around the coral colonies on Orpheus Island, located in the largest living structure on Earth- The Great Barrier Reef. The researchers inspected the variety of colors in the fish communities found around healthy coral reefs and compared it with other areas experiencing the effects of global warming, algae influx, and other impacts over 27 years.
A disaster has affected the world’s largest coral reef for decades now. An increase in bleaching events is predicted in the coming years. Only 2 percent of the Great Barrier Reef is currently safe from bleaching events that have affected other ecosystems for over 30 years. A species’ color and its environment are directly linked to one another. Color is essential to fish. They use their bright colors to attract males and their neutral colors to hide from predators. Bleaching events drive away colorful fish, leaving them more vulnerable, endangered, and habitat-less.
Corals with numerous branches, known as Branching Corals, provide shelter to fish. Thus, the bleaching of corals ultimately impacts the survival of species. However, it is not the end of coral reefs. The structures may continue to survive and adapt to warmer temperatures. But colorful fish communities would become rare in the years to come. According to Hemingson, people may begin to experience grief as fish communities and corals are lost. Scientists and researchers studying the crisis call it ‘ecological grief’. The grief experienced by people can serve as a motivational tool that inspires people to take action and conserve the remaining coral reefs.
To provide the best experiences, we use technologies like cookies to store and/or access device information. Consenting to these technologies will allow us to process data such as browsing behavior or unique IDs on this site. Not consenting or withdrawing consent, may adversely affect certain features and functions. We are compliant with GDPR and CCPA.
Functional Always active
The technical storage or access is strictly necessary for the legitimate purpose of enabling the use of a specific service explicitly requested by the subscriber or user, or for the sole purpose of carrying out the transmission of a communication over an electronic communications network.
The technical storage or access is necessary for the legitimate purpose of storing preferences that are not requested by the subscriber or user.
The technical storage or access that is used exclusively for statistical purposes.The technical storage or access that is used exclusively for anonymous statistical purposes. Without a subpoena, voluntary compliance on the part of your Internet Service Provider, or additional records from a third party, information stored or retrieved for this purpose alone cannot usually be used to identify you.
The technical storage or access is required to create user profiles to send advertising, or to track the user on a website or across several websites for similar marketing purposes.