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The fate of Australian temperate reefs

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The fate of Australian temperate reefs

Postby Helix » Thu Feb 06, 2014 9:42 pm

ABC RN's Big Ideas features a panel discussion from the 10th International Temperate Reefs Symposium, which was held in Perth a few weeks ago. The program is available as a podcast.

The discussion is illuminating, but both the written and spoken intros misinterpret the figures.

It’s Australia’s forgotten coast: the temperate reefs outside the tropics. 85% of temperate fish; nearly all of Australia’s molluscs and sea stars are unique to this environment. And there are nearly three times as many species of seaweeds in these cooler waters than there are corals in the entire Great Barrier Reef. But what’s the current state of and future thread [sic] to our temperate reefs?


The intro confuses endemism and diversity. In fact, diversity is higher in the tropics, but tropical species tend to have low endemism. Many -- probably most -- species occur outside Australian waters and are part of an Indo-Pacific biota. Temperate species, although fewer in number, show a higher level of endemism. They tend to be restricted to southern Australia. (Some are shared with NZ.) The figure of 95% given in the intro in relation to molluscs refers to this level of endemism, not the diversity.

I'm not overexcited about the apples and oranges comparison of seaweed and corals either.
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Re: The fate of Australian temperate reefs

Postby flying spaghetti monster » Fri Feb 07, 2014 11:11 am

Endimism. My new word for the day. Ta.
Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity, but don't rule out malice.
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Re: The fate of Australian temperate reefs

Postby roughbarked » Fri Feb 07, 2014 5:30 pm

flying spaghetti monster wrote:Endimism. My new word for the day. Ta.



+1 :)
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Re: The fate of Australian temperate reefs

Postby justjj » Fri Jul 01, 2016 2:18 pm

I wonder how long it will be before we hear, oh yeah, I know the GBR was great but hey ... it's not the only reef in the sea.
That's STILL a most interesting read ... taa
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Re: The fate of Australian temperate reefs

Postby roughbarked » Sat Jul 02, 2016 12:00 am

justjj wrote:I wonder how long it will be before we hear, oh yeah, I know the GBR was great but hey ... it's not the only reef in the sea.
That's STILL a most interesting read ... taa

It has been great and a great barrier. It has been really wonderful in every way for at least ten thousand years.
What is perhaps of more concern, is if the conditions again occur to create a platform for such a flourishing of life, will the life itself be able to flourish?
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