- Success Stories
- Environmental Resource Assessment & Management
Studying Mesophotic Coral Health
Mesophotic coral can live at depths of 500 feet below the ocean surface. Even at this depth, some of the mesophotic corals in the Gulf of Mexico were affected by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010. Our coral scientists supporting NOAA’s National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science are studying the extent of this impact.
Three of our employee owners participated in a mission to extract the corals from the Gulf of Mexico that were then transported to laboratories in Galveston, Texas, Gainesville, Florida, and Charleston, South Carolina. Once the Charleston specimens were housed in custom-made tanks, our scientists began studying and caring for the corals. They feed the colony multiple times daily, and study their growth and reproduction. In an effort to restore the damaged coral colonies in the Gulf of Mexico, the team is studying how to maximize growth and outplanting at a larger scale.