Monday, May 15, 2017

Bigelow Labs on Coral Reefs

Coral reefs provide critical marine habitats that support some of the most highly productive and dynamic ecosystems on the planet. A quarter of all marine life can be found in reef ecosystems, which in turn provide many benefits to people, including food, natural products, medicines, and coastal protection from storms. However, scientists have noted a concerning decline in the health of reefs throughout the world’s oceans during the last several decades.

Dr. Ben Neal, a postdoctoral researcher at Bigelow Laboratory, has spent his career studying reefs. Last summer, Dr. Neal traveled to the Central Pacific to study coralline algae, which play a critical role in reef health but are increasingly threatened by the spread of fungal disease. On May 23, he will present the latest findings from his team’s research in, “Tropical Treasures: How Global Changes are Affecting Remote Coral Reefs.” Guests are invited to join in a discussion on the complex combination of stressors that are impacting remote coral reefs.

Bigelow Laboratory’s Café Sci series is a fun, accessible way for people to engage with leading researchers on critical issues and groundbreaking ocean science. Thanks to generous sponsorship support by First Advisors, the Laboratory is pleased to join with Camden Public Library to offer a special, four-part Café Sci series in 2017.

Dr. Neal’s talk will take place on May 23 at 7 p.m. and is the final presentation in Bigelow Laboratory’s Café Sci series at Camden Public Library. The Laboratory’s popular summer Café Sci series will kick off July 11 at their East Boothbay campus. All Cafe Sci events are free and open to the public. Members of the press are encouraged to attend.

Visit for more information about this special Café Sci series.


Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences is an independent, not-for-profit research institution on the coast of Maine. Our research ranges from the biology and ecology of marine microorganisms to large-scale ocean processes that affect the global environment. Recognized as a leader in Maine’s emerging innovation economy, the Laboratory’s research, education, and technology transfer programs are spurring significant economic growth in the state. Learn more at, and join the conversation on Facebook and Twitter.

Photo courtesy of Bigelow Labs

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