"The success of this new research not only applies to the Great Barrier Reef but has potential global significance," said lead researcher Peter Harrison.
Scientists may have unlocked the secret that will save Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, as they celebrate the sea plant’s first successful transplant.
The success of these first trials is encouraging -- the next challenge is to build this into broader scale technology that is going to make a difference to the Reef as a whole," Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, chief scientist David Wachenfeld said.
Samples of coral spawn were taken from a segment nearest to Heron Island off the country’s east coast last year. Scientists allowed the samples to mature to larvae before reattaching them to the reef’s damaged areas.
Usually, strong currents, winds, and waves prevent reproductive cells from nestling along the coral. Implementing this new method allows millions of larvae to form which could potentially reverse the amount of damage done to the coral reefs by blast fishing in the Philippines.
"The success of this new research not only applies to the Great Barrier Reef but has potential global significance," said lead researcher Peter Harrison from Southern Cross University.
“There is much more to be done, but this is definitely a great leap forward for the reef, and for the restoration and repair of reefs worldwide,” said Anna Marsden, Great Barrier Reef Foundation managing director. “It’s time to be bold and take some calculated risks because that's the way we'll make a change in how we can help restore our coral reefs.”
According to Harrison, the discovery presents a fresh perspective on the problem which he hopes will only bring new revelations into large-scale restoration through the use of millions of coral larvae.
“I don’t know of any reef system on the planet that is now healthier than it was 35 years ago, and that’s really sad,” the team researcher said. “In South-East Asia, which is the center of marine biodiversity on the planet, it’s estimated that 95 percent of those reefs are highly degraded and are facing serious threats in the coming decades.”
The scientists continue saying that he believes this may be a way to change management of reefs around the world, all of which are suffering due to environmental and climate changes. He added that now is the time for the world to take a reality check and take action to protect nature’s environmental wonders.