Author

Dusty Ammann

Date of Award

2023

First Advisor

Amy Smith

Second Advisor

Donald McClelland

Abstract

Coral reefs provide thousands of jobs and millions of dollars in resources to local communities each year. Most cities that exist near the ocean and have access to a local reef will use those reefs to bring in about a third of their total economy. The Great Barrier Reef alone brings in millions of dollars annually. Thousands of species live within reefs, and approximately ⅓ - ½ of all marine species require a coral reef at some point in their life cycle, which demonstrates the diversity and fragility of these ecosystems. The Stony Coral Tissue Loss Disease (STCLD) is threatening these coral ecosystems and its spread is being monitored by multiple organizations like The Global Coral Reef Monitoring Network (GCRMN). The GCRMN has created multiple methods for divers to follow that allow them to catalog and view underwater ecosystems. These methods will be reviewed, along with the state of current knowledge regarding the treatment and spread of SCTLD, focusing primarily on reefs of the Caribbean.

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