Corals Week 2018

Celebrate the beauty and importance of coral reef ecosystems.

Transcript: International Year of the Reef. Celebrating these remarkable ecosystems every single day. Coral reefs are a hotspot for marine life of all kinds. Coral reefs support our seafood and fishing industries and help keep our coastal economy strong. Coral reefs protect coastal communities from storms, waves, and erosion and play an important role in many cultures and traditions. The existence of our coral reefs is threatened mostly by climate change, pollution, and damaging fishing practices. The good news is it's not too late to make a difference. But we must act now. Learn how you can get involved and celebrate the International Year of the Reef.

The benthic flora and fauna holds quite the diversity at the appropriately named Clam Gardens, inside Kingman Reef part of the Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument. Photo courtesy of NOAA Coral Reef Ecosystem Program
Don't Give Corals as Gifts

Corals are popular as souvenirs, for home decor and in costume jewelry, yet corals are living animals that eat, grow, and reproduce. It takes corals decades or longer to create reef structures, so leave corals and other marine life on the reef.

Research diver at Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary. Credit: NOAA, G.P. Schmahl
Science for Local Decisions

The NOAA Coral Reef Conservation Program delivers sound scientific information and tools that coastal and marine resource managers need to effectively address the primary threats coral reef ecosystems face.

Several species of reef fish nestle in a cauliflower coral in American Samoa.
Reef Resilience

Just as people tend to get sick when under stress, so do corals. If local stressors to coral reefs are reduced, the corals have a better chance of resisting or recovering from a stressful event such as bleaching. In this way, the reefs are more resilient.

diver at Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary
Take Action

Even if you live far from coral reefs, you can have an impact on reef health and conservation. Learn more about what you can do to support healthy coral reefs.