First documented broadcast spawning for Cauliflower Coral in Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument

wow,  now this is the kind of great press our corals need to show off how cool they are!~ SOS

First documented broadcast spawning for Cauliflower Coral in Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument
June 9, 2011

First documented broadcast spawning event for the coral species, Pocillopora meandrina (Cauliflower coral) in Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument

Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) workers diving at French Frigate Shoals in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, part of Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument and the Hawaiian Islands National Wildlife Refuge, have photographed for the first time a spawning event for cauliflower coral (Pocillopora meandrina).  Cauliflower coral is a common, reef building coral species found throughout the Hawaiian Islands and the Indo-Pacific, but its spawning had never before been documented.

“The spawning event was spectacular!” reports Fish and Wildlife Service volunteer Lindsey Kramer.  She and her colleagues reported that one or two colonies would begin to spawn in an area, and then neighboring colonies would follow.  Gray, smoke-like puffs of reproductive materials were ejected from each coral in waves, until the water became a hazy gray.  The out-going tide washed the spawning materials away within a few minutes, and the entire event lasted only about 10 minutes across the entire lagoon. Read more at:

http://www.papahanaumokuakea.gov/

High resolution photographs are available for media use at:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/usfwspacific/tags/coralspawning/

Papahānaumokuākea is cooperatively managed to ensure ecological integrity and achieve strong, long-term protection and perpetuation of Northwestern Hawaiian Island ecosystems, Native Hawaiian culture, and heritage resources for current and future generations.  Three co-trustees – the Department of Commerce, Department of the Interior, and State of Hawai‘i – joined by the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, protect this special place.

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