Bending with the wind, coral spawning linked to ocean environment

phys.org | 11/17/2019 | Staff
marishamarisha (Posted by) Level 3
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The relationships between environmental factors and deviation between the full moon and the 'first' spawning day of each year. (a) Sea surface temperature well explains the spawning day deviation from the full moon. (b) Distinct environmental factors at each time range are correlated with the spawning day deviation. Solar, solar flux; Temp, sea surface temperature; Wind, wind speed. Credit: Modified from Sakai et al.

During the early summer, corals simultaneously release tiny balls composed of sperms and eggs, known as bundles, that float to the ocean surface. Here the bundles open, allowing the sperm to fertilize the eggs where they eventually settle on the seafloor and become new coral on the reef.

Event - Night - Occurrence - Happens - Time

This spectacular annual event is known as "mass-spawning," and usually occurs at night. Although the occurrence of mass-spawning happens around the time of a full moon, it is difficult to predict precisely when. Now, a research team from Tohoku University, Ochanomizu University, and the National Institute for Basic Biology have utilized modeling analysis to indicate that environmental factors act as a determinant in the timing of mass spawning.

"Coral spawning is a complex phenomenon," says Shinchiro Maruyama, an assistant professor at Tohoku University. "It is...
(Excerpt) Read more at: phys.org
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