Bleached coral

Bleached coral

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Credit: PETER SCOONES/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Bleached coral (Acropora sp.). This coral has been bleached due to the loss of symbiotic algae (zooxanthellae). The exact mechanism or trigger for the bleaching is unknown, but adverse changes in the coral's environment are factors. Increases in sea temperatures due to global warming and sea pollution have both been cited as probable causes for the death of corals. Photographed off the Maldive Islands in the Indian Ocean.

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Keywords: acropora sp., animal, bleached coral, bleaching, cnidaria, cnidarian, coelenterate, corals, dumping, environment, environmental, floor, global warming, greenhouse effect, heavy metals, indian ocean, invertebrate, invertebrates, maldives, marine, nature, ocean, pollution, sea, seabed, toxins, underwater, wildlife, zoology

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