Coral reefs are going through unprecedented declines around the world due to human activity, both on global and local scales. Net Photosynthesis and calcification, commonly referred to as coral reef metabolism, are fundamentally important to measure coral reef function and health, as photosynthesis provides energy for the ecosystem, and calcification builds the three dimensional structure that provides habitat for the organisms. Historically, these measurements in the natural world have been made by collecting samples from the field and analyzing them in the laboratory through time and labor consuming instruments. As a result, it is still not well known how coral reef metabolism has been affected, and how it will change moving into the future.

Our group develops and utilizes two autonomous systems that can measure coral reef metabolism for weeks to months at a time: a dual pH-O2 Eddy Covariance system, and the Benthic Ecosystem and Acidification Measurement System (BEAMS). Both systems make measurements near the seafloor, and use turbulence theory to calculate coral reef metabolism. We have deployed these systems worldwide, and are working to establish long term monitoring sites

Lizard Island coral reef experiments, 2018.



Platz, M.C., Y. Takeshita, E. Bartels, and M.E. Arias. 2020. Evaluating the potential for autonomous measurements of net community production and calcification as a tool for monitoring coral restoration. Ecological Engineering, 158: 1–10.

Cyronak, T., Y. Takeshita, T.A. Courtney, E.H. DeCarlo, B.D. Eyre, D.I. Kline, T. Martz, H. Page, N.N. Price, J. Smith, L. Stoltenberg, M. Tresguerres, and A.J. Andersson. 2020. Diel temperature and pH variability scale with depth across diverse coral reef habitats. Limnology and Oceanography Letters, 5(2): 193–203.

Koweek, D.A., A. Forde, R. Albright, Y. Takeshita, D.A. Mucciarone, A. Ninokawa, and K. Caldeira. 2019. Carbon isotopic fractionation in organic matter production consistent with benthic community composition across a coral reef flat. Frontiers in Marine Science, 5: 1–14.

Fox, M.D., A.L. Carter, C.B. Edwards, Y. Takeshita, M.D. Johnson, V. Petrovic, C.G. Amier, E. Sala, S.A. Sandin, and J.E. Smith. 2019. Limited coral mortality following acute thermal stress and widespread bleaching on Palmyra Atoll, central Pacific. Coral Reefs, 38: 701–712.

Silveira, C.B., A. Luque, T.N. Roach, H. Villela, A. Barno, K. Green, B. Reyes, E. Rubio-Portillo, S. Mead, M. Hatay, M.J. Vermeij, Y. Takeshita, A. Haas, B. Bailey, and F. Rohwer. 2019. Biophysical and physiological processes causing oxygen loss from coral reefs. Elife, 8(e49114): 1–24.


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