Title

Changes in Pigmentation Associated with the Bleaching of Stony Corals

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

1989

Publication Title

Limnology and Oceanography

Keywords

Coral reefs

ISSN

0024-3590

Volume

34

Issue/No.

7

First Page

1331

Last Page

1335

Abstract

Bleaching (loss of pigmentation) is a common response by corals to environmental stress. Changes in pigmentation and the processes that caused them were studied in Montastrea annularis during a natural bleaching event off southeast Florida. Chlorophyll c, peridinin, and diadinoxanthin levels were 35, 17, and 20 times higher in normal corals than in bleached ones. Two processes, loss of zooxanthellae from the coral and loss of pigments from the remaining zooxanthellae, contributed to bleaching. Loss of zooxanthellar pigment accounted for 72% of the decrease in Chl c. The two processes contributed about equally to reduced carotenoid levels.

Comments

©1989, by the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography, Inc.

Additional Comments

NOAA grant #: NA86AA-D-SG068; NSF grant #s: OCE87-45282, OCE87-11852

DOI

10.4319/lo.1989.34.7.1331

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Peer Reviewed

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