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Characteristics that help coral bounce back

New report outlines features that make a reef able to deal with environmental stress

2:03pm, May 20, 2009

A host of factors, including type of coral, amount of algae and water clarity, may affect how well different coral reefs will cope with climate change, says a new report released May 20 by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.

The report — Resilience Assessment of Coral Reefs: Rapid assessment protocol for coral reefs, focusing on coral bleaching and thermal stress — outlines more than 40 indicators for determining a coral reef’s ability to handle environmental stress.

Carl Gustaf Lundin of the IUCN said during a press conference held at the time of the report’s release that the findings could help scientists develop management techniques to increase coral survival.

“We looked at existing features of the reef, and at what helps the reef to recover,” Lundin said.

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