Resistance to Coral Bleaching

Students interpret a chart from a scientific experiment to investigate whether corals can become more resistant to bleaching by heat stress. 

In this study, coral colonies of the species Acropora hyacinthus were moved from their original environments to either a moderately variable heat pool (MV, in blue) or a highly variable heat pool (HV, in red). After the corals spent a period of time in their new environments, they were exposed to heat stress. The figure shows each coral colony’s degree of resistance to bleaching, which is measured as the fraction of chlorophyll that remained in the corals after heat stress, compared to non-heat stressed controls.

The educator guidance document includes a captioned figure, background information, graph interpretation, and discussion questions. The student handout includes a captioned figure and background information.

© BioInteractive. Licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 

~ 1 hour


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  • Biology