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Australia's Great Barrier Reef is the largest living thing on Earth and is a major destination for the research vessel the "Golden Shadow." William Robbins studies sharks that reside along the reef and how they are negatively affected by climate change.
Robbins suspects sharks often feed at night due to the enhancement of senses in the dark. Scientists observe sharks working together to herd fish. The sharks feed on any fish, helping maintain the balance of the coral reef.
Robbins counts the number of sharks to understand the effects of Australian fishing regulations, management zones, and preservation zones in the Marine National Park. He and his assistant travel to the most exposed portion of Wood Reef to gather data on the shark population.
In 2016, the Great Barrier Reef had a devastating bleaching event that worried researchers who had just been in the region. An El Nino triggered the event, but climate change contributed; 67% of the healthy northern reefs were killed.
Credits: Great Barrier Reef
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The team settles in for a month on the Great Barrier Reef, the largest reef in the world. One scientist is studying sharks and, in a flashback we visit French Polynesia where sharks abound and the team films their natural feeding behaviors for the first time ever. Back on the GBR, the scientists explore the northern reef, which until recently was the healthiest part. The program concludes with new footage of the 2016 bleaching and severe die-off among these corals.
Length: 27 minutes
Copyright date: ©2017
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