A Well-Kept Treasure at Depth: Precious Red Coral Rediscovered in Atlantic Deep Coral Gardens (SW Portugal) after 300 Years | EMBRC

A Well-Kept Treasure at Depth: Precious Red Coral Rediscovered in Atlantic Deep Coral Gardens (SW Portugal) after 300 Years

2016.04.28

A Well-Kept Treasure at Depth: Precious Red Coral Rediscovered in Atlantic Deep Coral Gardens (SW Portugal) after 300 Years

The highly valuable red coral Corallium rubrum is listed in several Mediterranean Conventions for species protection and management since the 1980s. Yet, the lack of data about its Atlantic distribution has hindered its protection there. This culminated in the recent discovery of poaching activities harvesting tens of kg of coral per day from deep rocky reefs off SW Portugal. Red coral was irregularly exploited in Portugal between the 1200s and 1700s, until the fishery collapsed. Its occurrence has not been reported for the last 300 years.

Marta , Evangelista | CCMAR - Centre of Marine Sciences/University of Algarve

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