A small coral polyp taken from under a microscope.

Quality control of genetic diversity in coral aquaculture

A coral’s ability to resist warm water bleaching is the result of many factors, including its genetic makeup. The diversity of genetic makeup in corals also gives a better chance for them to survive through many other challenges.

New techniques are being explored to help fast-track the distribution of genes responsible for this tolerance to other areas of the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) in anticipation of future warming through large scale aquaculture.

However, it is unknown how the aquaculture process influences reproduction and genetic diversity through time.

This project will assess how genetic diversity changes over the course of coral reproduction, husbandry, and grow-out in an aquaculture setting.