Coral reefs provide shelter and food to millions of organisms. In this today time, it is quite difficult to imagine ocean ecosystems without the presence of coral reefs. Organisms grow, reproduce and survive with the help of coral reefs ecosystem decomposers.
What Are Coral Reefs
Coral is a class of colonial animal that belongs to the category of hydroids, jellyfish, and sea anemones. There are many types of coral reefs that are found on earth and classified as fringing reefs, barrier reefs, atolls, and patch reefs.
Coral reefs provide a place to live for a large variety of marine life such as oysters, clams, sea stars, sponges, and various varieties of fish. Experts have linked the presence of Coral reefs with ecology and they believe that corals help in the growth of seagrass, mangrove, and mudflat communities. Coral reefs serve as the center of the activity of marine life and that makes them different from others.
Where are Coral Reefs Found
Corals are found all over the world mainly in oceans whether it is shallow water or deep water. There is a symbolic relation between algae. It has been studied that algae require shallow, clear water that allows light penetration for photosynthesis. And where there is a high amount of algae, coral reefs are also found high in number. Coral reef ecosystem decomposers require tropical or subtropical temperatures that are mainly found in a band 30 degrees north to 30 degrees south of the equator.
When it comes to the USA, coral reef ecosystem decomposers are found in the following states, Puerto Rico, Florida, US virgin islands, Hawai, guan, commonwealth of the Northern Marianas Islands, American Samoa.
Importance Of Coral Reefs
Coral reefs are one of the best biologically diverse and valuable ecosystems present on our planet. As per some estimates, 25 percent of all marine life somehow depends on coral reefs at some point in their life. Above that, Approximately half a billion people depend on coral reef ecosystem decomposers for their food, coastal protection, and income from tourism and fisheries.
Coral reefs provide feeding, spawning, nursery grounds, and habitat to over 1 million aquatic species, including commercial species of fish. People get from coral reefs, especially those who live on small islands. Recreation and tourism opportunities flourish on coral reefs. People come to visit and do various activities like fishing, scuba diving, and snorkeling, which contribute a heavy amount of dollars to local economies.
Coastal infrastructure protection from storms, tsunamis, floods, and erosion.
Coral reefs are great sources of new medicines that could be very beneficial for human beings.
In this current time, there is a high amount of risk on coral reefs due to pollution and increased human activity near oceans. We need to take action to save coral reefs.