Evidence from the Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology shows that corals are already naturally adapting to higher temperatures. But the rate of increase may be too rapid for them to keep up.

Shreya Yadav/Madin Lab/Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology

In Oahu’s Kaneohe Bay, researchers with the Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology are engaged in a one-of-a-kind effort to document coral reefs as they undergo bleaching.

Upsilon Andromedae / CC BY 2.0 / Flickr

On this edition of Bytemarks Café, Burt learns about a rare coral that was successfully grown in the lab, and outplanted in Kāneʻohe Bay as part of Coralpalooza. Find out how lab cultivation helped to accelerate their growth and how they will be monitored once established in the wild. 6:30 PM on HPR-1.


It’s now commonly known that many chemicals commonly found in sunscreen are harmful to coral reefs. But that link wasn’t established until 2015 and many challenges to mitigating the negative effects remain.

Courtesy of DLNR / Division of Aquatic Resources

Update, 5:30 PM, May 23rd, 2019: The GET Committee deferred the resolution with a 4-4 split. The resolution will remain in the committee, and will be discussed at a later time.

Members of the Maui County Council on Monday considered a settlement offer in the case of a county wastewater facility. The case is currently scheduled to be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology

The world of Marine science is morning one of its own. Ruth Gates lost her battle with brain cancer last week. She was the director of the Hawaii Institute of Biology and was a champion of coral reefs.

Pockets of Hope Amid Bleached Reefs

Jul 2, 2018
Stop Adani / Flickr

The decline of coral reefs around the world is a troubling sign for the planet’s future. Corals are host to many other creatures, and when reefs die, entire ecosystems can be wiped out. As bleaching events and human impacts continue to raise concerns, researchers at the University of Hawaii have found some pockets of resilience, where damaged reefs have been able to slowly recover. 

Bytemarks Café: The DLNR's Coral Pyramids

May 23, 2018
Department of Land and Natural Resources

Today on Bytemarks Café, Burt and Ryan will find out about a fast-growing coral that the Department of Land and Natural Resources uses to repopulate the reefs. They will hear how these corals are given the 5-star treatment and then out planted as coral pyramids.

Wikimedia Commons
Wikimedia Commons

A move to protect coral reefs in the Pacific is sparking some controversy because of the impact it’s having on local jobs. The government of Fiji banned the export of live corals a week ago—but there’s still some confusion about the policy. HPR’s Bill Dorman has more in today’s Asia Minute.

Wikimedia Commons
Wikimedia Commons

Preserving ocean coral is a priority for many scientists and others around the world, including here in Hawai‘i. One challenge is rising ocean temperatures—but another one can be certain aspects of tourism. HPR’s Bill Dorman has more in today’s Asia Minute.

XL Catlin Global Reef Record
XL Catlin Global Reef Record

A week-long symposium on coral reefs wrapped up with a call to action. A letter sent to the Australian Prime Minister on Saturday urged the government to take steps toward curbing fossil fuel consumption. It was signed by the 2,500 attendees of the International Coral Reef Symposium…held in Honolulu. HPR’s Molly Solomon has more.

Leading Coral Experts Prepare For Symposium in Hawaii

May 11, 2016
Flickr / NOAA's National Ocean Service
Flickr / NOAA's National Ocean Service

Hundreds of the world’s top ocean scientists will gather in Honolulu next month for the 13th International Coral Reef Symposium. It’s the first time the conference will be held in Hawai‘i. 

Leading coral experts say it’s a critical time for our reefs. Warming sea temperatures and increased ocean acidification are continuing to stress these ecosystems. Human activity has also taken a toll: overfishing, runoff of sewage and sediments from the shore.

Wikipedia Commons
Wikipedia Commons

  We’ll learn about a coral nursery program at the Ānuenue Fisheries Research Center. This Division of Aquatics Resources center is experimenting with new ways to quickly grow corals for out planting in damaged reefs. 

NOAA's National Ocean Service / Flickr
NOAA's National Ocean Service / Flickr



Marine scientists are using some biology basics to protect Hawai‘i’s coral. 

Corals release their offspring as swimming larvae that eventually attach themselves to reefs and begin to transform into the skeleton of a coral head.  Researchers with the Hawai‘i Institute for Marine Biology have identified the molecular toolkit used by coral to build their skeletons.

The Conversation: Wednesday, March 23rd, 2016

Mar 23, 2016

Cigarette Tax; Coral Health; Youth Sports Concussions; Musicians Nick and Danny Kaleikini

 SB2690, Increase Excise Tax on Cigarettes and Little Cigars: Tom Yamachika  

  Joining us today is Don Kosak to tell us about the Hawaii Island Game Developer Meetup. Then we have Bryan Czibesz from State University of New York to tell us about an upcoming art exhibit.  Finally, we've invited two scientists from the Bishop Museum. Richard Pyle and Sonia Rowley will talk about coral research in the twilight zone. 

UH Biologists Use Super Coral to Build a Better Reef

May 29, 2014
Flickr / pixtory
Flickr / pixtory

Coral reefs around the world are showing signs of decline. Recent climate assessments indicate the ocean’s temperature and acidity levels are rising. Those trends are particularly harmful to Hawaii, which is home to more than 60% of the nation’s coral. But as HPR’s Molly Solomon reports, scientists at the University of Hawaii are working hard to make sure our reefs have a future.

Dan Dennison / DLNR
Dan Dennison / DLNR

Scientists and state officials are continuing to monitor a coral disease that’s quickly spreading across the north shores of Kauai. Large areas of reef are covered with a type of cyanobacteria, and as HPR’s Molly Solomon reports, the state is hoping to curb the disease by launching a new campaign. 

DLNR's Reef Response website can be found here.

Flickr / Vic DeLeon
Flickr / Vic DeLeon

One of the long-term concerns about that molasses spill in Honolulu harbor is the health of coral. The lingering damage of the spill on the reef ecosystem remains unclear. This week, an Australian study finds another connection between reef health and sharks. HPR’s Bill Dorman explains in today’s Asia Minute.

Molasses Spill Causing Major Reef Die-off

Sep 17, 2013
University of Hawaii
University of Hawaii

As more information about the Matson spill of 1400 tons of molasses comes to light -- one thing is for certain. It’s had a devastating impact on the harbor’s ecosystem. Over 25,000 fish have died so far, but researchers say it’s the surrounding coral that has them most concerned. HPR’s Molly Solomon reports.

Coral Disease, John Cruz, GMO, Keiki Art Camp

Jul 5, 2013

It’s Friday, July 5 – From HPR2, it’s The Conversation

Today: A slice of our past: the Northwest Hawaiian Islands

Randall Kosaki is NOAA's Deputy Superintendent of Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument. He studies the behavioral ecology, the taxonomy and biogeography of Pacific coral reef fishes.

A big success in a smaller venue