Coral Conservation

Can Corals Cope? 

Birch Aquarium has been propagating coral for more than 20 years. Young corals are raised in captivity to trade with other aquarium and zoos to reduce pressure on wild populations. Much like propagating plants from cuttings, fragments from many kinds of coral can grow into new colonies, creating live corals for aquarium displays without harming natural coral reefs.

Did You Know? 

  • Birch Aquarium’s coral displays and behind-the-scenes growing facilities feature both hard and soft corals.
  • Birch Aquarium is fortunate to have had corals spawn in captivity.
  • Members of the Birch Aquarium aquarist team have traveled to Curacao to participate in international research efforts in order to better understand coral spawning events and the best ways to grow young corals in captivity.

Scripps Oceanography Coral Reef Research featured at Birch Aquarium

One of the greatest risks to coral reefs around the world is ocean acidification. Birch Aquarium has teamed up with Scripps Oceanography researcher Dr. Martin Tresguerres to provide an updated look at how ocean acidification impacts corals.


Understanding Corals at the Cellular Level 

Scripps Institution of Oceanography scientists studying coral reefs are diving deeper into the mechanics of how reefs work at the cellular level. Coral reefs are amongst the most biodiverse and productive ecosystems in the world and yet scientific knowledge of coral biology at the cellular level is scarce. By utilizing newly developed immunological techniques, Scripps Oceanography's Martin Tresguerres and David Kline are conducting an experiment to understand and predict responses to human-created stress.