Coral reef ecosystems are some of the most complex and important ecosystems in the earth. They are also among the most biologically diverse and economically valuable ecosystems, producing, billions of dollars in food, recreation and tourism activities,coastal protection from storm and wave action.
The biggest threats to shallow corals areoverfishing, poor water quality due to pollution and deforestation, costal development, and overpopulation. Sedimentation, chemical pollution, and overfishing are significant local threats occurring worldwide.
Land use - primarily the removal of forests – and increased population density are the key drivers of long-term shallow coral reef destruction. This pattern is observed worldwide with clear devastating impacts in Madagascar, the Caribbean Islands, and Southeast Asia within the Coral Triangle. “There are many direct evidences that deforestation and land use practices affects near-shore reef ecosystems by in some instance wiping out the entire ecosystems in the very short-term” explained Pierre Fidenci,Founder of ESI, during a conservation talk. That’s why Endangered Species International(ESI) combines conservation efforts on terrestrial (rainforest conservation and restoration) and marine conservation in unison to sustain shallow coral reef biodiversity.
ESI conservation work has shown that:
Increasing forest protection along key places including watershed and coastal areas benefits to coral reef conditions;
Coral reef loss directly causes ongoing fish decline; Coral reef protection leads to fish increase and diversity;
Increased coral reef conservation and protection directly benefits local communities via sustainable fishing and tourism
ESI is deeply involved in saving shallow-water coral reef ecosystems. They are one of the most endangered ecosystems where thousands of species are becoming extirpate (locally extinct) and in the verge of extinction. Join us to save coral reefs!