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Coral Reefs in Hot Water

By Kaitlin Bonner

St. John Fisher College

Students analyze sea surface temperature (SST) data from NOAA to predict coral bleaching at four locations in the Bahamas. They then compare their predictions to authentic research collected about coral mortality and temperature fluctuations

Listed in Teaching Materials | resource by group HHMI BioInteractive FMN (2017)

Version 1.0.0 - published on 04 Oct 2018 doi:10.25334/Q4MM51 - cite this

Licensed under CC Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International according to these terms

Adapted from: Mapping Coral Bleaching Modified with NOAA and Authentic Bleaching data v 1.0.0



This activity was modified from K. Grayson.  It was implemented in a second semester first year course for biology majors laboratory.  It is one of two activities in the lab, about 1-1.5 hours.  Here the students use Google Sheets to generate SST graphs, including degree heating weeks (DHW).  Using Google Sheets enables students to see each others figures and answer leading questions at the end of the activity.  The activity concludes with students making predictions of bleaching given their results for 2005 and comparing their predictions to observed bleaching by interpreting figures from Eakin  et al. 2010.   


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HHMI BioInteractive FMN (2017)

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