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Corals in Hot Water: Creating Conduits for Better Communication Between Scientists and Managers for Effective Reef Conservation

  • Author(s): Jain, Nayantara
  • et al.
Abstract

Coral Reefs are among the most complex, biodiverse, and interconnected ecosystems on the planet. On a global scale, they are affected by increasing sea surface temperatures, alterations in seawater chemistry, changes in nutrient levels and overfishing. Many predict coral reefs will be the first ecosystemic victim of anthropogenic climate change. However, one of the most powerful ways of buffering a natural ecosystem, such as a coral reef, is to maximize resilience at the local level. The goal of this project is to improve understanding of the status of the reef in the Andaman Island Archipelago, India, and to communicate this understanding to managers to better protect them against global scale changes to come. This project will form a holistic picture of the reef by synthesizing existing data from research projects conducted in the region as well as from local agencies. In so doing, this project will create a semblance of long-term monitoring results adding to an understanding of how the reefs have been affected by different processes over the years. The results will identify the factors that are important for reef conservation at a scale relevant to local reef managers, and will communicate results to Forest Officials in a way that they find useful. This project will create a template that bridges the formidable gap between scientists and administrators by enabling effective communication between them.

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