Prickly Adaptability: Will Crown-of-Thorn Starfish Populations Survive Rising Ocean Temperature and Acidity?
Crown-of-Thorns starfish outbreaks are of growing concern for the wellbeing of Indo-Pacific coral reefs. When these starfish populations grow too quickly, they feed on corals at rates that don’t allow the ecosystem to recover fast enough. With coral reefs struggling to survive rising ocean temperatures and acidity, it is essential to determine how these conditions affect their predators – in this case, the Crown-of-Thorn starfish. A recent study found that ocean warming and acidification affect larval development but not survivability. Could this mean bad news for coral reefs?Read more