Reefs

aerial view of coast with plume in water

A huge amount of effort is going into protecting the Great Barrier Reef - often the kilometres away from where the coral is actually living. Researchers now have a better understanding of the system of erosion and sediment transport processes connecting agricultural land with water quality in the Reef. Critical to improving land management practices.

People snorkelling on reef in front of island

There is an imperative to take action to protect and restore the Great Barrier Reef, the question is how we go about it. A new initiative is engaging the community in those decisions.

diver looking down through blue waters at whale shark

They're elusive, whale sharks, so we're keeping an eye on them using satellite tracking to see how far they travel and, in a world first, taking DNA samples to see just how old they are. Here they are on Ningaloo reef.

school of striped yellow fish near reef

Here's one aspect of rising sea levels to think about - the loss in light reflected through ocean waters. Marine ecologists are asking, what are the limits, and threats, to coral skyscrapers? Because coral reefs don't just spread out - they also spread up.

bleached coral

A paper published in Nature Climate Change has revealed the importance of regional differences in sea surface temperature variability in determining the global distribution of coral bleaching risk.

turtle at the water's edge

Ningaloo Reef was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Area in 2011. Scientists are using tracking technology to better understand the region's unique and charismatic species.

diver measuring bleached coral

The only way to prevent further severe coral bleaching on the world’s tropical reefs is to urgently reduce global warming, a new study reveals.

Plane in a hangar

It can be seen from space - the largest structure made of living organisms on Earth. Now the US space agency - NASA - is here to help scientists explore the link between changing conditions and coral health on the Great Barrier Reef.

close up of yellow, mini-submarine on water surface

Community engagement is a key component of the Ningaloo Outlook project which aims to increase the ecological understanding of the Ningaloo Coast World Heritage Area’s deep and shallow reefs and the reef’s shark and turtle populations.