Coral Reef Systems

Concepts and character of a coral reef
Survey and monitoring of living coral cover
Coral reef references
Coral reef papers
Coral reef projects
Coral identification

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Modern reefs are important for their mediation of nearshore ecology, their role as natural breakwaters and their value as fishery and recreational resources. They take on added significance as models for ancient reef systems and their links to natural-resource distribution as well as questions about the evolution of marine life through geologic time.

Coral reefs are biologically produced structures that in time exert control on the surrounding environments. Modern reefs are a focal point for study by varied groups of researchers, each of which has its own perspectives and priorities. Biologists are primarily concerned with individual organisms or interactions among them (ecology).

these pages are copyright 2005 by Jack Morelock