Search for Super Corals
GBR Legacy's first collaborative research expedition on the Great Barrier Reef, we set out to provide free access for leading scientists to study corals that may hold the secret to surviving in a warming ocean.
The Big Discoveries
- The first new coral species discovered in 30 years!
- The discovery of the first definitive ‘super coral’ species, Acropora tenuis, was found surviving at all reef sites regardless of the level of bleaching impact
- Super corals: Far northern corals are now considered to be the superstock of Great Barrier Reef coral species.
- 12 live "super coral" colonies were collected by the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS)
- In a world first, nine of the super coral colonies have spawned and are now joining over 200,000 coral larvae from the November 2017 spawning that are successfully settling onto special plates at the National Sea Simulator
- 99 live coral fragments collected by University Technology Sydney (UTS) will be analyzed for their entire biological make up.
- The most diverse branching coral site ever found on the Great Barrier Reef was observed. This reef is a natural bio bank and Dr Charlie Veron has called for greater understanding and preservation of this site to allow its genetic store to be protected.
- Mapping: 30.8 km of reef was mapped, including 12 new reef sites, at a 2 cm resolution. 12 square km were mapped by the drone mapping team.
- Turtle tracking: 'Maree' the female green turtle was tagged. Maree's track shows she moved to Raine Island where she has nested again!
- The deepest dive achieved by an ROV (Remotely Operated Vehicle) in the far northern Great Barrier Reef at 80+ metres, used to explore deep seafloor communities.
- New fish species observed on the Great Barrier Reef - presently only known from northwestern Australia!
- Water Samples: 385 stored water samples for seawater alkalinity and more taken to be studied for bacteria populations by Museums Victoria.
- The very first MangroveWatch survey at Wilkies Island.
- Media: We delivered science direct from the reef to the public
- A public symposium following the expedition where our preliminary results were delivered from each of the research teams involved. This was streamed live on Facebook.
- While this was happening, we also filmed a documentary for international distribution.
Watch an overview of the expedition here