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Large Orbicella Assisted-Reproduction Report

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Author Name: 
Brian K. Walker, Joana Figueiredo

The purpose of this project was to assist the reproduction and propagation of previously-identified, large (≥ 2 m diameter), Endangered-Species-Act (ESA)-threatened-corals of the species Orbicella faveolata from southeast Florida and the Keys, as well as Montastraea cavernosa colonies in southeast Florida -- both species most impacted by the coral disease outbreak. This includes collecting gametes during spawning, fertilizing eggs, rearing larvae and growing recruits into colonies that can be used for restoration. Field collections of southeast Florida large colonies were unsuccessful; however, the other project objectives were still met by raising fertilized Orbicella spat from the Florida Keys and using them in light experiments. The O. faveolata gametes were used to run light experiments to optimize grow-out and the M. cavernosa gametes were used to rear larvae and grow recruits into colonies that can be used for restoration. The outcomes of this project provided numerous colonies of reef-building species and saved their genetic diversity in ex situ tanks.

This report summarizes the field and lab efforts conducted to fulfill PO B39AA7 Tasks 1, 2 and 3 deliverables.

Last Modified:
February 14, 2024 - 10:32am

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