The Great Barrier Reef is in danger of losing out to global warming due to bleaching. As a result, fish are deserting the habitat, which is not a healthy sign for the ecosystem. A team of scientists is experimenting with sound waves in order to entice the fish back. The scientists have labeled the process "acoustic enrichment." It involves underwater loudspeakers strategically positioned on patches of dead coral. The loudspeakers can replicate the sounds of healthy reefs. These attract the fish and once they return, the dead Coral Reefs get a chance to recover. In the study, the team of scientists from the UK and Australia noted that there was a marked improvement in the arrival of fish.

CNN quotes Steve Simpson, one of the study's authors, saying, “Healthy coral reefs are remarkably noisy places -- the crackle of snapping shrimp and the whoops and grunts of fish combine to form a dazzling biological soundscape.” The fish follow these sounds when they are in search of a place to settle. Obviously, the presence of fish indicates healthy reefs. However, once they become quiet, the shrimps and fish vacate the place.

In the opinion of Tim Gordon, the lead author of the study, the return of the fish could help the recovery of the ecosystems and give the reefs a new lease of life.

'Bleaching events' damage the coral reefs

The Great Barrier Reef is 1500 mile long and has suffered from a number of large scale "bleaching" events.

These were attributable to a rise in water temperatures during the last two decades. It worsened from back-to-back occurrences in 2016 and 2017. This situation could have far-reaching implications including the destruction of natural wonder and "widespread ecological collapse." Acoustic enrichment has some positives.

There was an increase in both the number of fishes and the number of species. The combined effect could mean a healthier ecosystem.

CNN adds the research team tracked the experimental reefs for 40 days. Its observations appear to prove that music and sound could play a major role in rejuvenating the coral graveyards. As Andy Radford, a co-author, explains to CNN, "Acoustic enrichment is a promising technique for management on a local basis." He adds there are other factors also like Climate change, overfishing and water pollution.

Infusing life into dead coral reefs

According to Boston, climate change has affected coral reefs all over the world and researchers are trying to evolve a solution. In the Caribbean, they are busy cultivating coral nurseries. That way, they can transplant fresh coral on damaged reefs. Hawaii is also trying to breed corals that can withstand rising ocean temperatures. A team of British and Australian researchers has gone in for a revolutionary concept of sound therapy. It is all about broadcasting the sounds of healthy reefs to the dying ones. They have done it on the Great Barrier Reef and claim to have some success. They undertook the study from October through December 2017 in a lagoon in the northern part of the GBR

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