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Unprecedented Mass Bleaching and Loss of Coral across 12 degrees of Latitude in Western Australia in 2010-11

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dc.contributor Dept Environm & Conservat
dc.contributor Australian Institute Of Marine Science
dc.contributor Oceans Inst
dc.contributor Csiro
dc.contributor Australian Inst Marine Sci
dc.contributor Dept Fisheries Wa
dc.contributor Commonwealth Scientific & Industrial Research Organisation (csiro)
dc.contributor Marine Sci Program
dc.contributor Pilbara Reg Serv
dc.contributor Marine & Atmospher Res
dc.contributor Univ Western Australia
dc.contributor Biodivers & Biosecur Branch
dc.contributor University Of Western Australia
dc.contributor Australian Institute Of Marine Science (aims) en
dc.contributor.author BELLCHAMBERS, LYNDA M.
dc.contributor.author EVANS, RICHARD D.
dc.contributor.author EVANS, SCOTT N.
dc.contributor.author FRIEDMAN, KIM J.
dc.contributor.author GILMOUR, JAMES P.
dc.contributor.author MIDDLEBROOK, RACHAEL
dc.contributor.author RADFORD, BEN T.
dc.contributor.author SHEDRAWI, GEORGE
dc.contributor.author THOMSON, DAMIAN P.
dc.contributor.author WILSON, SHAUN K.
dc.contributor.author DEPCZYNSKI, MARTIAL R.
dc.contributor.author FIELD, STUART N.
dc.contributor.author HOLMES, THOMAS H.
dc.contributor.author RIDGWAY, TYRONE
dc.contributor.author TAYLOR, HEATHER
dc.contributor.author MOORE, JAMES A. Y.
dc.date.accessioned 2017-03-21T01:09:32Z
dc.date.accessioned 2013-02-28T06:55:30Z
dc.date.accessioned 2013-02-28T06:55:30Z
dc.date.accessioned 2019-10-21T21:55:01Z
dc.date.available 2013-02-28T06:55:30Z
dc.date.available 2017-03-21T01:09:32Z
dc.date.available 2017-03-21T01:09:32Z
dc.date.available 2019-10-21T21:55:01Z
dc.date.issued 2012-12-17
dc.identifier 9333 en
dc.identifier.citation Moore JAY, Bellchambers LM, Depczynski M, Evans RD, Evans SN, Field SN, Friedman KJ, Gilmour JP, Holmes TH, Middlebrook R, Radford BT, Ridgway T, Shedrawi G, Taylor H, Thomson DP, Wilson SK (2012) Unprecedented mass bleaching and loss of coral across 12° of latitude in Western Australia in 2010-11. PLoS ONE 7(12): e51807. en
dc.identifier.issn 1932-6203
dc.identifier.uri http://epubs.aims.gov.au/11068/9333
dc.description.abstract Background: Globally, coral bleaching has been responsible for a significant decline in both coral cover and diversity over the past two decades. During the summer of 2010-11, anomalous large-scale ocean warming induced unprecedented levels of coral bleaching accompanied by substantial storminess across more than 12 degrees of latitude and 1200 kilometers of coastline in Western Australia (WA). Methodology/Principal Findings: Extreme La-Nina conditions caused extensive warming of waters and drove considerable storminess and cyclonic activity across WA from October 2010 to May 2011. Satellite-derived sea surface temperature measurements recorded anomalies of up to 5 degrees C above long-term averages. Benthic surveys quantified the extent of bleaching at 10 locations across four regions from tropical to temperate waters. Bleaching was recorded in all locations across regions and ranged between 17% (+/- 5.5) in the temperate Perth region, to 95% (+/- 3.5) in the Exmouth Gulf of the tropical Ningaloo region. Coincident with high levels of bleaching, three cyclones passed in close proximity to study locations around the time of peak temperatures. Follow-up surveys revealed spatial heterogeneity in coral cover change with four of ten locations recording significant loss of coral cover. Relative decreases ranged between 22%-83.9% of total coral cover, with the greatest losses in the Exmouth Gulf. Conclusions/Significance: The anomalous thermal stress of 2010-11 induced mass bleaching of corals along central and southern WA coral reefs. Significant coral bleaching was observed at multiple locations across the tropical-temperate divide spanning more than 1200 km of coastline. Resultant spatially patchy loss of coral cover under widespread and high levels of bleaching and cyclonic activity, suggests a degree of resilience for WA coral communities. However, the spatial extent of bleaching casts some doubt over hypotheses suggesting that future impacts to coral reefs under forecast warming regimes may in part be mitigated by southern thermal refugia.
dc.description.sponsorship This study was funded by the Department of Environment and Conservation WA, the Department of Fisheries WA, the Australian Institute of Marine Science, the Western Australian Marine Science Institution and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.
dc.description.uri http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0051807
dc.language English
dc.language en en
dc.relation.ispartof PLoS ONE en
dc.relation.ispartof Null
dc.subject Mortality
dc.subject Indian-ocean
dc.subject Island
dc.subject Tropical Cyclone
dc.subject Resilience
dc.subject Climate-change
dc.subject Multidisciplinary Sciences
dc.subject Future
dc.subject Thresholds
dc.subject Conservation
dc.subject Impacts
dc.subject Science & Technology - Other Topics
dc.subject Building Corals
dc.subject Great-barrier-reef
dc.title Unprecedented Mass Bleaching and Loss of Coral across 12 degrees of Latitude in Western Australia in 2010-11
dc.type journal article en
dc.identifier.doi 10.1371/journal.pone.0051807
dc.identifier.wos WOS:000312435900055


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