A Look at Diadema Urchins by Fincasters


In the early 1980s, the Caribbean saw a massive die off of the long spine sea urchin (Diadema sp.), an important algae grazing invertebrate that cleaned off valuable space for coral settlement. The official cause of the urchin decline was eventually described as an unknown disease, but regardless of the cause, it put coral populations in severe jeopardy of being overgrown by algae. Unfortunately, the small number of urchins that remained (around 3% or less of the previous population) have had slowed success repopulating the Caribbean and surrounding areas. The macroalgae that the urchins once fed on quickly bloomed, overgrowing the corals that were left and causing undue stress on an already pressured system. This obviously alarmed many folks in the scientific community and has led to researchers starting various breeding and repopulating projects. The subject of this latest video from Fincasters is focused squarely on these efforts, with a majority of the story being centered around those of Martin Moe, a researchers and long time force in the aquarium hobby. The Fincast steps us through the many achievements and projects by Martin, but also describes how his research is being used by others to really up the production.


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