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Climate change stressors such as rising sea-surface temperatures and ocean acidification negatively influence coral calcification, reproduction, and survival, a problem highlighted in Hawaii following two consecutive coral bleaching events in 2014 and 2015. Sustaining reefs in the face of intensifying climate change requires decisive action informed by solid scientific evidence. To contribute to this agenda, we are currently monitoring the pH and temperature dynamics at two reefs in Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii with high versus low daily pH variability (~0.25 vs. 0.1/day). These data are publicly available in real time and serve to contextualize a large reciprocal transplant experiment to determine the effects of 1) a novel pH regime on coral growth, physiology, and symbiont communities, and 2) the influence of individual environmental history on acute thermal stress response. In addition, corals are being tested for their ability to acquire resistance to climate change in ecological time by exposing them to elevated OA and temperature in either an acute or chronic scenario. Following these initial challenges, corals will be re-exposed to acute climate change stress and monitored for acclimatization. The goal of this work is to develop corals better able to withstand climate-change for use in reef restoration. Once scientifically supported strategies have been developed, managers can apply them to local species to remediate damaged reefs and boost the survival of native communities in a future ocean that will be warmer and more acidic.


Barott, K. L., Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology, USA,

Gates Coral Lab, R., Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology, USA

Lio, S., University of Hawaii, USA,

Glazer, B. T., University of Hawaii, USA,

Gates, R. D., Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology, USA,


Oral presentation

Session #:056
Date: 03/01/2017
Time: 12:15
Location: 305 A/B

Presentation is given by student: No