Climate Change Banishes Great Barrier Reef for Sixth Time￼
Greetings to you! In this blog, I want to continue talking about the devasting effects of climate change and how it’s affecting our environment. In particular, Australia’s Great Barrier Reef is now victim to its “sixth mass bleaching due to heat stress caused by climate change,” the reef’s managers explained. This newest update took place “mid-way through a 10-day monitoring mission by UNESCO scientists as they consider whether to add one of the world’s seven natural wonder to their ‘in danger’ list.”
The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA) and Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS) recently said, “…aerial surveys of around 750 reefs show widespread bleaching across the reef, with the most severe bleaching observed in northern and central areas.”
AIMS coral biologist Neal Cantin explained, “More than half of the living coral cover that we can see from the air is severely bleached completely white and can have signs of fluorescence in the colors of pink, yellow and blue. The corals are producing these fluorescent pigments in an attempt to protect their tissue from heat and from the intense sun during these marine heatwaves.”
Earth’s Most Extensive Coral Reef Ecosystem
Now Under Extreme Threat
Australia’s Great Barrier Reef [GBR] stretches an extraordinary 1,400 miles (2,300 kilometers) down the Queensland coast. It contains the earth’s largest display of coral reefs, with 400 types of coral, 1,500 species of fish and 4,000 types of mollucs. Before the pandemic forced borders to close, it attracted around three million tourists each year.
The GBR consists of some “2,500 individual reefs of varying sizes and shapes, and over 900 islands, ranging from small sandy cays and larger vegetated cays, to large rugged continental islands rising, in one instance, over 1,100 meters above sea level. Collectively these landscapes are seascapes provide some of the most spectacular maritime scenery in the world. It is one of a few living structures visible from space, appearing as a complex string of reefal structures along Australia’s northeast coast.”
“Six of the world’s seven species of marine turtle occur in the GBR. As well as the world’s largest green turtle breeding site at Raine Island, the GBR also includes many regionally important marine turtle rookeries. Additionally, the GBR [contains] great scientific interest in the habitat of the dugong (sea cow).”
Coral bleaching occurs when ocean temperatures rise due to climate change. The bleaching (white colored coral) is the direct result of colorful algae leaving the coral when the coral ejects the algae from its tissue, taking away its food source. If these conditions do not improve, the coral will starve and die.
Jodie Rummer, associate professor of Marine Biology at James Cook University in Townsville said, “Even the most robust corals require nearly a decade to recover. So, we’re really losing that window of recovery. We’re getting back-to-back bleaching events, back-to-back heat waves. And, and the corals just aren’t adapting to these new conditions.”
Here’s an Excellent Way for Talking to Kids about Climate Change
One awesome tool for talking to kids about climate change is to read my fourth installment in the award-winning Kobee Manatee® Children’s Educational Picture Book series. It’s titled, Kobee Manatee® Climate Change and The Great Blue Hole Hazard. It’s about climate change and plastic pollution in our oceans.
When you read this award-winning educational picture book to children, you’ll discover it’s a fun and fictional adventure loaded with weaved in facts on climate change and plastic pollution. It effortlessly helps children learn about this serious subject in a fun and entertaining way. Here’s a brief synopsis …
Kobee Manatee®, the protagonist and his seafaring pals, Tess the seahorse and Pablo the hermit crab swim from the Cayman Islands to Belize. Kobee wants to help his cousin Quinn clean up plastic litter at her new, all-veggie underwater bistro called Quinn’s Seagrass Café.
On their Caribbean journey they encounter harmful effects of climate change and plastic pollution. As if that wasn’t enough, several other unforeseen problems occur with a distressed loggerhead turtle, a giant Portuguese man-of-war, and a venomous scorpionfish. They’re all amazed when they discover the extraordinary Great Blue Hole. Then their adventure takes another crazy turn when Pablo plunges into its huge abyss!
Each page includes in-depth, scientific details on climate change and plastic pollution in our oceans with Dr. Tracy Fanara, Inspector Planet & NOAA Scientist. Tracy can be seen on The Weather Channel as a visiting expert and she’s also seen on their “Weird Earth” segments.
We already have Fantastic Reviews on this New Release!
“A well-crafted, thoughtful, and well-illustrated addition to a noteworthy educational book series.” —Kirkus Reviews
“Robert Scott Thayer presents an important environmental message in an engaging story with wonderful characters. Anyone who loves the ocean and wants to help save it should read Kobee Manatee: Climate Change and The Great Blue Hole Hazard. I’m looking forward to the next Kobee Manatee adventure.” —Readers’ Favorite
For young readers who enjoy imaginative tales surrounding affable and heroic sea creatures, as well as parents and/or teachers looking for a way to introduce youngsters to the importance of marine conservation, Kobee Manatee® Climate Change and The Great Blue Hole Hazard offers a perfect blend. Highly recommended! – Chanticleer Book Reviews
Keep watching for more of my updates on climate change!
If you see any sick or injured manatees, please call the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission at: 1-888-404-3922 (FWCC). They are the folks who are responsible for rescuing us in Florida.
Here’s the Save the Manatee Club link to learn more about us manatees …
Here’s a cool link for you to learn more about how we’re rescued and brought into rehabilitation …
~ Kobee Manatee