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Hawaii News

Nursery on Sand Island experiments with coral to speed up the healing of reefs

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Video by Stanley Lee
On Oahu's Sand Island a small team of coral specialists and technicians has been working for years to restore the slow-growing coral reefs in Hawaii that are being subjected to increasingly frequent bleaching events.
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MARK LADAO / MLADAO@STARADVERTISER.COM

The Anuenue Coral Restoration Nursery keeps some hanging coral on hand for show. Coral is hung elsewhere by putitng plugs on a thread, while in the ocean. The method is problematic in Hawaii because it promotes algae growth and the shape makes them less able to withstand wave action.

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MARK LADAO / MLADAO@STARADVERTISER.COM

Dave Gulko, a coral biologist for the Division of Aquatic Resources, looks over a tank full of pyramidal cement modules with coral fragments glued onto them. The corals, in rooms like this, will entirely cover the 42-centimeter modules after about eight months or so.