Jewels of the Gulf: Deep-sea Coral Educational Video Series

Paragorgia species of coral (“bubble gum coral”) photographed in the Gulf of Mexico June 2017. Photo courtesy of ECOGIG

Paragorgia species of coral (“bubble gum coral”) photographed in the Gulf of Mexico June 2017. Photo courtesy of ECOGIG

What are deep-sea corals?  Why are researchers conducting studies on their health? What type of equipment do scientists use to conduct research at the deep ocean seafloor?

The research and outreach teams with ECOGIG developed three videos that answer these questions and more about Gulf of Mexico coral. The ECOGIG team developed these videos as part of their 12-day science expedition on the exploration vessel Ocean Intervention II earlier this year. Scientists on this expedition were continuing their multi-year investigations on how oil, gas, and chemical dispersants affect marine life and their environment after the Deepwater Horizon incident.

The videos include footage of coral taken by high-resolution cameras mounted on a remotely operated vehicle and interviews with chief scientist Dr. Iliana Baums, Dr. Charles Fisher, Fanny Girard, and Cherisse Du Preez (Pennsylvania State University); Alexis Weinnig (Temple University); Dr. Amanda Demopolous (US Geological Survey); and Dr. Santiago Herrera (Leigh University).

Learn about deep-sea coral:


Jewels of the Gulf: What is a deep sea coral? from ECOGIG on Vimeo.

See how scientists study deep-sea coral:


Jewels of the Gulf: How do scientists study deep sea corals? from ECOGIG on Vimeo.

Understand the importance of studying deep-sea coral:


Jewels of the Gulf: Why study deep sea corals? from ECOGIG on Vimeo.

Read what scientists are learning about deep-sea corals since the Deepwater Horizon incident:

Read more about coral research and the people who study them:

************
This research was made possible in part by a grant from the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI) to the Ecosystem Impacts of Oil and Gas Inputs to the Gulf-2 (ECOGIG-2) consortium.

The Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI) is a 10-year independent research program established to study the effect, and the potential associated impact, of hydrocarbon releases on the environment and public health, as well as to develop improved spill mitigation, oil detection, characterization and remediation technologies. An independent and academic 20-member Research Board makes the funding and research direction decisions to ensure the intellectual quality, effectiveness and academic independence of the GoMRI research. All research data, findings and publications will be made publicly available. The program was established through a $500 million financial commitment from BP. For more information, visit http://gulfresearchinitiative.org/.

© Copyright 2010- 2017 Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI) – All Rights Reserved. Redistribution is encouraged with acknowledgement to the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI). Please credit images and/or videos as done in each article. Questions? Contact web-content editor Nilde “Maggie” Dannreuther, Northern Gulf Institute, Mississippi State University (maggied@ngi.msstate.edu).