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22 Φεβ 2014 (πριν από 3 χρόνια και 8 μήνες)

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Along the coast of Mexico, Honduras, Guatemala, and
Belize.


Largest coral reef in the western hemisphere


Amazing display of bio diversity, which is home to 65
species of stony coral, 350 species of
mollusk

and more
than 500 species of fish


More than 724 km long


Farming and mining practices





Introduction of unwanted species

Pesticides used in farming cause immense damage to
the Mesoamerican Reef.

1.
Pesticides reach the reef due to poor infrastructure
and slopes and inclines near the water

2.
Coral needs very special conditions to thrive, and
clean water is crucial

3.
Chemicals cause irreversible damage


Along with its beautiful appearance, coral has many
wasteful uses including


Concrete


Calcium


Souvenirs and jewellery


Medical uses




Coral souvenirs common in gift shops


Coral mining is extremely damaging to the
M
esoamerican reef


Reefs are built over thousands of years, and cannot
grow back quickly


Other damage, like sand erosion and sedimentation
occurs


The loss of coral has huge economic factors, and has
been determined to lose between $137,000 to $1.2
million dollars over 25 years per kilometer squared.


Habitats for fish and other creatures are destroyed


The after math of the BP oil spill had a huge affect
on ecosystem in the surrounding area


145 million barrels of oil has leaked since the spill,
more than 2.5 million per day


More than 8.300 species have been affected by the
oil spill


Toxic chemicals were used to “disperse” the spill,
resulting in even more damage


Coral reefs rely on clean water, and the oil began to
contaminate these, destroying portions

When organisms are introduced to an area, it can
cause devastation. This has occurred in the
Mesoamerican reef, with things like the lion fish and
crown of thorns.


Introduced in the 1990s after an aquarium
was destroyed during a hurricane


Extremely evasive as it has no natural
predators


Efforts to reduce population were mainly
ineffective


The lionfish breeds extremely quickly, and
can release


Studies have shown lionfish reduce the
amount of coral fish by an estimated 80%



The crown of thorns is the second largest sea
star in the world


Outbreaks of crown of thorns cause
devastating and unchangeable destruction
when introduced to coral reefs, as they grow
rapidly and stop other coral from being able
to grow


Sodium bisulphate can be injected to prevent
over population

Despite many terribly destructive influences to
the Mesoamerican coral reef, there is a strong
movement trying to keep the reefs alive.



Organizations like
Healthy Reefs for healthy
people
work to educate, fundraise, and help protect the
coral reefs


Annual report cards are produced which give
detailed information on how the reefs are declining


Coral nurseries have been set up around Belize and
Mexico that grow extremely endangered coral and
have been very effective


Mexico, Guatemala, Belize and Honduras have all
made agreements to protect the coral reefs and
species

Protected areas have been established that
have made a huge impact on the health of the
reef. In these areas, there are many protective
features, including


Maintaining endangered species


Protecting habitat


Banning excessive fishing


Lowering the rate of dangerous introduced
species, like the lionfish

There has been seemingly irreversible damage
done to the Mesoamerican reef, however with
support we can keep this beautiful, bio diverse
and crucial part of our ecosystem alive.


Control of Lionfish in the Mesoamerican Reef
-

GlobalGiving
. (
n.d.
).
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: donate to projects in the developing world supporting
education, health, women and children, and more
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27, 2011, from http://www.globalgiving.org/projects/control
-
of
-
invasive
-
lionfish
-
in
-
the
-
mar
-
reef/


Healthy Reefs Healthy People
-

Healthy Reefs. (
n.d.
).
Healthy Reefs
Healthy People
-

Healthy Reefs
. Retrieved June 27, 2011, from
http://healthyreefs.org


ICRAN. (
n.d.
).
ICRAN
. Retrieved June 27, 2011, from
http://www.icran.org/


Mayan
riviera
: Dive in the Mesoamerican Reef System. (
n.d.
).
Riviera
Maya Travel reservations
rivieramaya

playa del
carmen

cozumel

tulum

yucatan

mayan

location
. Retrieved June 27, 2011, from
http://www.rivieramaya.info/news/2008/02/dive
-
in
-
mesoamerican
-
reef
-
system.html



NOAA Says Invasive Species Prevention and Control Focus Needed
on Non
-
native Lionfish. (
n.d.
).
NOAA Public, Constituent and
Intergovernmental Affairs
-

HOME
. Retrieved June 27, 2011, from
http://www.publicaffairs.noaa.gov/releases2006/nov06/noaa06
-
r499
-
4.html


National
Geographic Mesoamerican Reef: Animals, Photos, Video.
(
n.d.
).
National Geographic
-

Inspiring People to Care About the
Planet Since 1888
. Retrieved June 27, 2011, from
http://www.nationalgeographic.com/wildworld/reef/reef.html


PhysOrg

Mobile: Efforts to spear invasive lionfish not likely to curb
population, researchers say. (
n.d.
).
PhysOrg

Mobile: latest science
and technology news
. Retrieved June 27, 2011, from
http://pda.physorg.com/news/2011
-
06
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efforts
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spear
-
invasive
-
lionfish
-
curb.html


Visualizing the BP Oil Spill. (
n.d.
).
IfItWereMyHome.com
. Retrieved
June 27, 2011, from http://www.ifitweremyhome.com/disasters/bp