Scientists with Mote Marine Laboratory check up on a staghorn coral that has been transplanted to a reef east of Looe Key and fastened—along with its cement pillar—to the service below. Staghorn coral (Acropora cervicornis) was once one of the most abundant corals on Caribbean and Floridian reefs. Today, after severe losses due to coral bleaching and disease, it is listed as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act. The Conservancy is working with Ken Nedimyer to grow this species in his underwater nursery to restore the coral to its former abundance. By comparing the survival and growth rates of multiple coral genotypes at different positions along the reef, Conservancy scientists are learning about genetic and geographic aspects of reef resilience.

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