What, exactly, is a coral reef? And how have the world’s reefs changed in the last several decades? What are the stressors undermining reef structure and function? Given the predicted effects of climate change, do reefs have a future? Is it possible to “manage” coral reefs for resilience? What can coral reef scientists contribute to improve protection and management of coral reefs? What insights can biologists and geologists provide regarding the persistence of coral reefs on a human timescale? What is reef change to a biologist… to a geologist?
Clearly, there are many challenging questions. In this chapter, we present some of our thoughts on monitoring and management of coral reefs in US national parks in the Caribbean and western Atlantic based on our experience as members of monitoring teams. We reflect on the need to characterize and evaluate reefs, on how to conduct high-quality monitoring programs, and on what we can learn from biological and geological experiments and investigations. We explore the possibility that specific steps can be taken to “manage” coral reefs for greater resilience.
Additional publication details
|Publication type||Book chapter|
|Publication Subtype||Book Chapter|
|Title||Measuring, interpreting, and responding to changes in coral reefs: A challenge for biologists, geologist, and managers|
|Contributing office(s)||Wetland and Aquatic Research Center|
|Larger Work Type||Book|
|Larger Work Subtype||Monograph|
|Larger Work Title||Coral reefs at the crossroads|