Los corales de la costa de los Cayos de Florida e riesgo desaparecer

Miami, Dec 21 (EFE).- The corals found near the coast of the Cayos de Florida (USA) have taken a dramatic shape in the last 30 years and have come across a disappearance due to poor water quality, according to a study by the University of Miami (UM).

“Los conjuntos de corales en los Cayos de Florida near the coast present a loss of species diversity since previous times”, reports the authors of the study, professors of this university Zoi Thanopoulou, Kathleen Sullivan Sealey and Jacob Patus, who acknowledgment of a press release from the institution.

Investigators conducted an analysis of water quality over the course of two years at three locations located between the orilla and up to 500 meters of shoreline off this extensive chain of islands, which conform to the northernmost point of the United States.

Of the 13 sites near the coast that were the subject of study, which uploaded the analysis of the muestras de agua to the state of the Departamento de Protección Ambiental de Florida, the team encountered by its coral rastros, while the other two tenían hasta ocho varieades of coral.

The “significativas diferencias” between both cases “support the idea that the quality of water plays an important paper in the appearance of corals”, indicates the study.

“Water affects the whole life cycle of a coral. If the water is not of good quality, it will affect the recruitment, growth and reproduction of corals,” dijo Sealey, who has studied coastal ecology for three years decades.

For more than 25 years the Cayos have experienced a rapid urban desarrollo, which has collected the waste water of the callas, which the menu contains fertilizers and other contaminants, as well as the leaks of the septic tanks, has changed the composition of the water of the ocean and increased levels of chlorophyll and toxic algae growing in the water.

“We have higher levels of chlorophyll, lower oxygen content and a higher pH level (alkaline) than the elements in the water that most influence the coral reef”, said Thanapoulou.

These factors negatively impact water quality, as do coral and herdsman communities near shore, report the study authors, who warn that the consequences could extend to deeper-water coral reefs, “where it thrives una cuarta parte de las especies marinas del océano”.

“The coral communities on the coast are criaderos de algunas especies de peces y langostas que luego se trasladan a los arrecifes de coral más grandes,” explained Thanopoulou.

Coral reefs in Florida, of which corals form part of the Florida keys, are the third largest coral reef in the world.

According to the Oficina Nacional de Administración Oceánica y Atmosférica (NOAA), Florida’s coral reefers support 70,000 puestos de trabajo and generate approximately $8,500 million in annual sales and revenue.

c) EFE Agency

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