Words by Abi Scaife
Conservationists have set up ‘coral nurseries’ to help the Great Barrier Reef thrive.
Coral … nurseries?
Right! Like garden nurseries (and Pokemon nurseries if that’s more helpful), these coral nurseries are designed to take coral reefs from a place where they would struggle to survive, to one where they are thriving.
How does it work?
Unlike Pokemon nurseries, these coral nurseries use pieces of coral that have naturally broken off (dubbed ‘fragments of opportunity’) and would not normally survive.
These pieces are taken to nurseries, which are floating aluminium frames in the sea, where they are grown in optimal conditions.
So what happens then?
In these conditions, the coral thrives and grows and, in many cases, spawns. Small pieces of this coral are then removed from the nurseries and planted back in the reef.
This process is having a huge effect on the Great Barrier Reef, making it more resilient and helping it to recover from traumatic events like mass bleaching.
Is this going to fix coral reefs?
Ultimately, we still need to get a handle on climate change and take more steps to protect our world - but this is a great step in the right direction, and is making a huge difference to the ecosystem of the Great Barrier Reef.