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Invasive Kappaphycus alvarezii seaweed killing coral reef

Date: 01 June 2019 Tags: Biodiversity
  • According to recent study, invasive Kappaphycus alvarezii seaweed, which smothers and kills coral reefs, has spread to coral reef areas in Valai island in Gulf of Mannar (GoM).
  • It is set to invade new coral colonies in GoM marine national park and has resulted in decrease in Macrofaunal and fish density.
  • The study was conducted by Reef Research Team (RRT) of Suganthi Devadason Marine Research Institute (SDMRI), Thoothukudi.
  • It has submitted its report to the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFC) by the Reef Research Team (RRT).
  • Kappaphycus alvarezii seaweed is red algae which firmly attaches to coral colonies and forms mat over them. This eventually results in smothering and killing of corals.